satan playing chess

Satan is your enemy: 25 Strategies he uses against you

Carl is a biblical scholar, minister, husband, father and life coach. In his mid-twenties he had a powerful encounter with God and saw miraculous healings as a result. He passionately shares these stories and empowers others to fulfill their God-given potential.

Some people think God is the source of all their problems. He isn’t. Trouble is, the devil makes us think He is. This is what Brother Hagin called, “stinking thinking.” If we haven’t taken the time to renew our mind by meditating on God’s Word then we’ll inevitably fall prey to Satan’s machinations. A careful examination of the Holy Writ reveals the devil, to be the source of all our problems (unless of course, you are creating them;). God is for us, not against us (Rom 8:31). God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all (1st Jn 1:5). Not only are we born into a cursed earth, subject to evil spirits which blind man to the light of the Gospel but John’s first Epistle describes the whole world ‘lying in wickedness’ (1st Jn 5:19).

We don’t start out on firm footing in this world because the odds are stacked so vehemently against us. But God through the precious blood of His Son, enables our victory as overcomers. We are overcomers because Christ overcame for us (Rev 3:21), but without Him, we are defenseless. Lest we eat the flesh of Christ and drink His blood, we have no life in us (Jn 6:54). Christ was not speaking literally in this passage, but in essence, He was saying, “Just as you take food and drink within your body and it becomes a part of you, so you must receive Me within your innermost being so that I can give you life.”

The Gospels are full of symbolism and imagery. To take each and every passage literally, is foolish. We must rightly divide the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15). Not only must we receive and believe on Christ but fully comprehend the majestic spoils now in our possession, because of His sacrifice. Click here to find out what Jesus did for you…

Please understand, that without knowledge of Holy Scripture, some of us might think God is the cause of so many bad things coming our way. Some people are superstitious, placing a charm here or a hex there to alleviate their misery but in doing so are actually engaging with familiar spirits that seek to do them harm. Malevolent and seducing spirits have always entertained the spiritually curious. Satan loves unauthorized ventures into his dark domain. Superstitious practices are on the rise in these harrowing times.

The allure of the occult is seemingly unprecedented at this point in time. People yearn for answers, even from the realm of superstition which promises much but enslaves the desperate. If you’re reading this article by happenstance, and are desperate for assistance in whatever predicament you might find yourself in, then consider the God who loved you so much, He was willing to sacrifice His only begotten Son on your behalf (Jn 3:16-19; 1st Jn 4:9). Christ died a gruesome death on your behalf, paying your outstanding wages of sin. If you don’t let Christ pay for your sins in this lifetime, you’ll spend eternity paying for them in Hell.

Inferiority is a trap

Lucifer was an anointed cherub situated in close proximity to God’s glory. He saw what it was like to be worshiped. By comparing himself to God, he felt inferior. It could be argued that ‘comparison’ was the first sin. Lucifer wanted to be ‘like the most High’ (Isa 14:14) and was desirous of worship. We are warned against comparing ourselves to others in scripture (2 Cor 10:12).

By making comparisons to others who might have more talent, ability, money, looks or smarts, inferiority will most assuredly set in. In Lucifer’s case, as an angel he was created superior to man, yet inferior to God (Heb 2:7). Because God created man in His image and likeness (Gen 1:26), jealousy took root in Lucifer’s heart. Consequently, he sought to hurt God deeply by causing His precious creation to fall. Each time a soul enters Hell another part of God’s creation is lost for eternity. This grieves our Heavenly Father deeply.

Beware of making comparisons with others

In order for inferiority to exist at all, there must be a comparison of some kind. In the Garden of Eden, Satan made Eve feel inferior by suggesting, if she ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, she’d be ‘like God, knowing good and evil’ (Gen 3:5). Ironically, Adam and Eve were already like God, being created in God’s image and likeness but notice, Satan’s conjecture that Eve was inferior in her present state was the very bait he used to entice her. Once she took the fruit, insecurity set in and she ran for a fig leaf to cover her shame (Gen 3:7).

Beware of comparison which creates a sense of inferiority. This either causes envy of others or deep dissatisfaction in ourselves. A fig leaf was not satisfactory to cover shame because only a blood sacrifice would do. By offering Adam and Eve animals skins (Gen 3:21), God was alluding to the sacrifice of His Son, whose blood covers all sin and shame. Reproach (shame) is a snare of the devil (1 Tim 3:7). All believers are presently seated in Heavenly places, the righteousness of God and joint-heirs with Christ. You have nothing to feel inferior about because Jesus took your reproach (Isa 53:4). Beware of Satan’s attempt to place shame on you.

Study your enemy

The famous book “The Art of War,” is an ancient Chinese military treatise, written by Sun Tzu. Within its pages, the primary takeaway is that before one goes to war, one must fully understand not only the enemy, but the strategies he consistently utilizes. Understanding the multifaceted strategies of our enemy is one of the keys to victory. The other key, is knowing who you are in Christ Jesus. Sadly, we are born into enemy territory. We live in a multidimensional sin war, not of our choosing. We were born with hostility towards God because of our Adamic sinful nature, albeit God made restitution through Christ, for all who choose to believe on Him. Yet our war with the world, flesh and the devil rages on, until we leave this earth. The devil has no intrinsic authority over the believer in Christ, he can only gain a foothold through deception or ignorance.

By taking time to review the following scriptural references, you’ll no longer be ignorant of the strategies Satan uses to defeat you. Indeed, why would Satan change strategies at this juncture, having proven successful?  The old saying that ‘knowledge is power,’ is particularly prescient when it comes to the wiles of Satan. Knowing how he has wreaked havoc on the saints down the years, is half the battle. The other half is applying the necessary resistance to offset his schemes. If we submit to God and resist the devil, he will flee (Jam 4:7), albeit that doesn’t mean he won’t return at a later season (Lk 4:13). If he returns, he must be resisted once more. The following list comprises the key strategies of Satan, your adversary, who is the potential source of many of your problems. Study them carefully, for greater comprehension of his rascality:

25 Strategies that Satan uses against you:

  1. Temptation leading to rebellion (Gen. 3:2, Cor. 11:3).
  2. Instigator of every and all works of darkness, moral sedition and sex perversion (Eph. 5:11; 6:12; Acts 16:18; Rom. 1), including the spirits Incubus and Succubus.
  3. Purveyor of the works of wickedness (Col. 1:21).
  4. Spiritual blindness preventing men from receiving the Gospel of Christ (2 Cor. 4:4).
  5. Stealing the Word of God when a listener fails to understand or comprehend the word which was sown (Mt. 13:19).
  6. All deceptions and false religions stem from the devil (2 Cor. 11:14; 1Tim. 4; Rev. 12:9).
  7. Killing and destroying at every opportunity (Jn. 10:10).
  8. Sowing tares, tempting, and sifting saints (Mt. 4:3; 13:25; Lk. 22:31).
  9. Promoting counterfeit worship and miracles (2Th. 2:8–12; 1Cor. 10:20).
  10. Causing storms (Job 1:18–19; Eph. 2:2).
  11. Ruling nations (Mt. 4:8–9; Dan. 10).
  12. Executing death (Heb. 2:14–15).
  13. Accusing the brethren (Christians) (Rev. 12:10).
  14. Hindering prayers (Dan. 10:12–21).
  15. Opposing the gospel (Eph. 6:1–18).
  16. Supervising demons (Jn. 12:31), fallen angels (Rev. 12:7–12), and fallen man (Jn. 8:44).
  17. Causing sickness and disease (Mt. 4:23–24; 9:32–33; 15:22; Acts 10:38).
  18. Causing infirmities (Mt. 8:17; Lk. 13:16; Jn. 10:10; Acts 10:38).
  19. Causing lunacy and mania (Mt. 4:23–24; 17:14–21; Mk. 5:1–18).
  20. Urging suicides (Mt. 17:15; Jn. 10:10).
  21. Agitating lusts (Jn. 8:44; Eph. 2:1–3).
  22. Lying and false prophecy (1Ki. 22; Mt. 24:11, 24; 2Cor. 11:13–15).
  23. Propagating false doctrines (1Tim. 4; 2Tim. 4; 2Th. 2; Rev. 13).
  24. Oppressing men (Acts 10:38).
  25. Persecuting Christians and warring on saints (Eph. 6:10–18; 1Pet. 5:8–9).

Christ died to destroy and cancel all these works of the devil for believers, and to give complete mastery over them (Col. 2:14–17; 1Pet. 2:24; Lk. 10:19; Jn. 14:12; Mk. 16:17–18).

Our ongoing responsibility

The good news is the curse of the law, (i.e., sickness, poverty and spiritual death) has already been absolved by Christ via His death, burial and resurrection (Gal 3:13-14). Therefore, you have the lawful right to live victoriously until Christ’s return…but the question is, will you? Sustained victory requires some good old fashioned willful determination in resisting the devil and his strategies. That’s up to you, and no-one can do it for you.

The only works listed above that will not be put down in this dispensation of Grace, are:

1) Sin and rebellion among men, living in a world of wickedness.
2) Satan’s rule of the nations; the reign of death (for the unsaved).
3) Continued opposition of Satan toward the saints.

These three, will be done away with, in the Millennial Reign of Christ (Eph. 1:10; 1Cor. 15:24–28; Rev. 21:1–8; 22:3).

Click here to find out exactly what Christ did for you on the cross and the many spoils of victory already in your possession.

Have you believed on the Lord Jesus Christ? If not, click here to find out more…

Author: Carl G.M. Joseph



Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, vol. 1 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1996), 313.

Finis Jennings Dake, The Dake Annotated Reference Bible (Dake Publishing, 1997), 1 Jn 3:8.

Steve Foss, Satan’s Dirty Little Secret: The Two Demon Spirits That All Demons Get Their Strength From, (Creation House Publishing, 2007).

Related keyword searches:

Is God my problem?
Is God my enemy?
Is God for me?
Is the devil my enemy?
Strategies of Satan
The Art of War
Sun Tzu

Join the discussion

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Further reading

God is a Consuming Fire

The Book of Hebrews outlines our correct attitude toward Almighty God. “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be moved, let us be...