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To destroy Adam and Eve’s relationship with God, Satan used speech, lying to them about the forbidden fruit (Genesis 3:1-14). Instead of using the serpent as his preacher, Satan today uses human beings ( 2 Corinthians 11:13-15) who give the appearance of God’s faithful messengers. They are teaching lies and false doctrines (1 Timothy 4:1-3). They may be teaching in Satan’s synagogues, or church (Revelation 2:9), or they may be teachers in the Lord’s church (1 John 4:1; Acts 20:29, 30). 

One way Satan is so successful in destroying the church, is by destroying what God says about the home. As Satan did to Eve, his preachers may ridicule what God has said, making fun of the truth and the true messenger (Genesis 2:17; 3:1ff; Galatians 4:6). We can never underestimate the efforts of Satan to destroy our families, and our church family as well.


Satan realizes the critical importance of the family to the salvation of the souls of the husband, the wife and the children, to the future of the church of Christ, and to the well-being of society. Satan uses deceitful devices (2 Corinthians 2:9-11) and false teachers and preachers. Satan “. . . steals my words everyone from his neighbor.” (Jeremiah 23:25-30; See also 1 John 3:10; John 8:44; I John 4:1).

One, Satan tries to steal God’s word that marriage is for life – (Matthew 19:1-9; Genesis 2:24 and Romans 7:1-3).

Two, Satan tries to steal God’s words by denying that adultery is a “heinous crime” (Job 31:9-11), hated by God (Malachi 2:16).

Three, Satan tries to steal God’s word that a person must repent (get out of an adulterous relationship); baptism does not purify an adulterous situation (1 Corinthians 6:9; Acts 2:38; Matthew 3:8 . . . ).

Four, Satan tries to steal God’s word that a person can “live in adultery.” God affirmed that the Colossians “walked” and “lived in” fornication, uncleanness, et al. (Colossians 3:5-7). In Matthew 19:9 the word “commits” or “commiteth” is present tense. This indicates habitual, continuous action, in the state of adultery – not merely a one-time act, briefly taking place the moment two people are united.

The law is, “one man for one woman for life.” The one exception is adultery (Matthew 19:9). To withstand Satan’s wiles, clothe yourself and your family in God’s armor (Ephesians 6:11-17).

Curtis Cates, Via YokeFellow Memphis School of Preaching July 17, 1991



Several years ago, rangers in the Kruger National Park in Africa needed too thin the elephant population. They decided to send a large number of elephants to other parks. Because of the elephant’s size and the difficulty in transporting them long distances, it was decided to only send juvenile elephants and adult female elephants. Adult bull elephants were just too large to transport.

All seemed to go smoothly until rangers at Pilanesberg National Park in South Africa, the new home of the first shipment of elephants, began to discover dead white rhinos. At first, they suspected poachers. However, upon closer investigation, they discovered that the rhinos still had their precious horns, the usual target of poachers, and they were not killed by gunshot wounds, but by deep puncture wounds.

To discover what was happening, the rangers set up hidden cameras throughout the forest. What they found astonished them. The culprits were bands of young, aggressive male elephants. They would knock down a rhino then gore him to death with their tusks.

According to zoologists, this kind of behavior is unheard of in elephants. What could have caused this behavioral aberration? The rangers speculated that it was the absence of the leadership of adult bull elephants. They knew that in normal circumstances, the adult bulls kept the younger bulls in line.

To test their theory the rangers brought in a number of older bulls. Sure enough, in a short period of time, the older bulls let the younger bulls know that such ruffian behavior was unacceptable. Within weeks, the harassment of other animals in the parks ceased.  The young bulls were photographed following the older bulls around and imitating their more appropriate and civilized behavior.

What happened to the elephants is what we see happening in our society today. Nearly 40% of our children are being raised in a home where fathers are absent. Lacking that male leadership and role model that is crucial to normal child development, many young men are behaving like animals. The size of our prison populations attests to this fact. The difficulties schoolteachers are having controlling their students attest to that fact. 

A community that allows a large number of young men to grow up in broken homes, dominated by women, never acquiring any stable relationship to male authority, never acquiring any rational expectations for the future — that community asks for and gets chaos. Beloved we are now living in a day of chaos!

Solomon said, “Train up a child in the way he should go and even when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6). Paul taught, “Fathers provoke not your children to wrath; But nurture them (or bring them up) in the chastening and admonition of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4). “Chasten thy son, seeing there is hope; And set not your heart on his own destruction proverbs” (Proverbs 19:18) 

Via an email sent to Tommy 9/8 2000


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