“Don’t waste time trying to make him think that materialism is true! Make him think that is is strong or stark or courageous–that it is the philosophy of the future. That’s the sort of thing he cares about” –> remember how the devil often skips trying to convince you by strong argument of something and instead just appeals to emotion or desire to influence your actions, or will just flat out strike at whatever part of you he has the biggest or most convenient stronghold on.
Unconscious difficulties with religion not brought to the surface, without clarity = exploitable point
The devil will flat out lie to you and tell you that God’s not going to help you but will leave you to “do things on your own”
Devil technique: “Keep his mind off the most elementary duties by directing it to the most advanced and spiritual ones.” –> @todo: what are the “elementary duties” vs. “advanced ones”. how does this relate to Hebrews 5-6 where they talk about the elementary teachings of Christ?
Devil technique: keep the focus on sins and irritations, anything that distracts from prayer, especially prayers of physical healing.
Things associated with evil (AVOID): irritation, judgment, quarreling, terror, self-pity, contented worldliness
“Hence [by having double standards] from every quarrel they can both go away convinced, or at least nearly convinced, that they are quite innocent. You know this kind of thing: ‘I simply ask her what time dinner will be and she flies into a temper.’ Once this habit is well established you have the delightful situation of a human saying things with the express purpose of offending and yet having a grievance when offense is taken.” …watch out for and be cautious of the second half of that statement 😉
God works from the center outward, gradually bringing more and more of your conduct under his control and new Godly standards
Effectiveness of prayer should not be judged by whether it produces the desired feeling.
“Wherever there is prayer, there is danger of His own immediate action” 🙂
“He pours out self-knowledge in a quite shameless fashion”
When you are attending to God, the devil is defeated. The devil will try to get you to turn your gaze away from God to yourself…don’t fall to that temptation
The devil often works not through putting things into your mind but by keeping things (ie. godly things) out.
differentiate mood from concentration of will and intelligence in prayer
“For if he ever comes to make the distinction, if he consciously directs his prayers ‘Not to what I think thou art but to what though knowest thyself to be,’ our situation is, for the moment, desperate”
Are you directing your prayers to an image of God, a physical object that represents God, or to the REAL god himself?
The devil may try to paint a picture of terror about your future and fill you with self-pity about a happy past…–> counter = belt of truth
“The Enemy [ie. God], true to His barbarous methods of warfare, allows us to see the short misery of His favorites only to tantalize and torment us”
From the preface:
- no uncreated being except God, God has no opposite (no such thing as perfect badness)
- devils = angels gone bad…abuse their free will to oppose God and therefore by extension, God’s people
- Satan = opposite of Micheal, not God
- images (symbolic representations) of angels have wings in art & literature to suggest swiftness of unimpeded intellectual energy & human form because man is the only rational creature we know
- Bad angels are practical. Two motives: fear of punishment, hunger to dominate