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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Michael Youssef » Michael Youssef - Satan's Playbook

Michael Youssef - Satan's Playbook

Michael Youssef - Satan's Playbook
Michael Youssef - Satan's Playbook
TOPICS: The Invisible War, Spiritual warfare

If you look at the world today, you're gonna discover that the forces of evil are no longer underground like they used to be. The forces of evil are no longer invisible. The forces of evil are no longer hidden from view as they were once were. Now, they operate in the open. These forces of evil being the foot soldiers of the father of lies, and that is why they lie as to their purpose. And the reason they lie, just like Satan, listen carefully please, is because they want to deceive the well-meaning but non-discerning person. They want to deceive the apathetic and the unconcern. That's the purpose. Throughout the series of messages that I'm starting today, I'm going to reveal to you the powerful Satanic deception, the invisible war, because it's invisible to most people, not to the believers.

The Satanic deceptions that we are experiencing today, is the same old tired formula that Satan used with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. It's the same one. What he does, he just dress it in a nice modern dress, and it looks new to the undiscerning to the unsuspecting. He disguise it as a new thing, but it's not. It's just to mislead the simple. It's to misguide the confused. It is to misdirect the directionless. Now, to show you how this is an old lie, I want you to look with me very quickly at Acts 20:28. Paul speaking to these leaders in the church of Ephesus. I've been to Ephesus, it's now called Ismir. Here is what he said, "Pay full attention". Pay full attention. Can you say those words with me? "To yourselves". He's talking to the leaders. To yourselves.

I wish so many Christian leaders, those of us in leadership really take this to heart. "And to all the flock over whom the Holy Spirit has given you oversight". To do what? "To care for the church of God," which is talking about Jesus, "He obtained with his own blood". He purchased with his blood. It's not, our church, it's not some pastor's church, it's not some preacher's church, it is the church of Jesus Christ. He said, "I know after my departure fierce wolves will come among you, and they will not spare the flock; and from among yourselves," and the churches. "From among yourselves will rise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after themselves". Not after Jesus, but after themselves.

If we are not seeing that today, I don't know where you are. These three verses literally could take a series of messages, just the three verses. But several things that I need you to know about the commanding general of the army of your enemy and the enemy of your soul. You need to know several things, he's cunning, he's conniving, he's clever, he's deceptive, and he's a chameleon. And he even uses, as Paul said, people from among them. That's church people. And that is why he's ruthless, he's ruthless, he's ferocious. This commanding general of the enemy's forces of this invisible war. But please, please, do not let this frighten you. This whole series of messages is designed not to make you afraid, but to give you courage and to give you the tools to be in victory and have victory.

I'm gonna show you again, and again, and again, that he who's in us is greater than him. He who's in us is greater than him. It's just a matter of knowing how to appropriate God's power for you to have victory. Some of you might be asking, "But Michael can really the enemy of our soul uses people in the church or even church leaders to destroy and some ministries and to destroy some churches"? I wanna explain that but yes, I'm not talking about that church of Jesus Christ that is the elect of God from every tongue, tribe and nation, that is the church. And Jesus said, "Of that church, the gates of hell will not overcome it". But the local churches and the local ministries can be impacted by this invisible war unless they're alert as to the tricks of Satan.

Think about this invisible war like a regular war. Can a soldier in a regular war become helpful to the enemies army? How? Cowardice, ignorance, that's a big one I'm gonna come to, not paying attention or lack of resolve. In the same way, surrendering your life to the lordship of Jesus Christ is only the first step. That's only the first step. It's not the end of the story. Surrendering to the lordship of Jesus Christ is important. It is a decisive step by acknowledging that there is no other way to salvation except through Jesus, you have moved from darkness to light. You move destination from hell to heaven. Oh, but you're not yet finished your journey. You are not yet sanctified.

Let me put it this way. Your spiritual being is like a house that has many doors, many doors, many doors. Each door opens into your soul. Each door needs to be bolted securely to prevent illegal entry on a regular basis in spite of the fact that you have surrendered your life to Jesus Christ, to his lordship, not all of these doors are bolted. Not all of these doors continuously being bolted. And if one of Satan's foot soldiers comes in and push on one of these doors, sooner or later, one of those doors are gonna swing open. Ah, now he found a way into your soul. Now he actually found your Achilles heel.

You say, "What are you talking about, Michael"? I'm gonna tell you exactly what I'm talking about. Unresolved anger is a door. And if you leave it unbolted, and not taking care of it under the power and the blood of Jesus, he's gonna keep coming through that door, he's gonna keep coming through this door in your life, and he is going to create havoc with all of your relationships. Not just one. Fear is a door. Bitterness is a door. Hatred is a door. Lying is a door. I'm just giving you some examples. So you understand what I'm talking about. These are many other doors. If they're not continuously, continuously, continuously bolted, you're gonna give your enemy access to your soul. But there is a big gate, not just a door, a gate, and that is the gate of ignorance.

Beloved, I have learned this lesson. I should say, I'm learning this lesson, I don't wanna get too arrogant here. The very hard way, and that is why I wanna help everyone, anyone, anyone, anyone, to avoid these painful experiences. And that is truly your first step of having victory over the enemy of your soul. That's your first step. It is the first step of knowing your enemy's modus operandi or his operating manual. Now, this is not difficult to have the manual, Satan's operating manual, it's not difficult but it's hard to defeat it without Jesus. You know, in sports, a coach protects his playbook with his life, with his life, why? Because if the opposing team got hold of that playbook, they're toast, because they will work their strategy to defeat them.

Satan's playbook or manual is easy to find, but difficult to defeat. You need to know, you need to know how he attacks, when he attacks, and where he attacks. That way, you are constantly in a state of readiness, in a state of readiness. Please hear me right. An informed army that have intelligence, accurate intelligence, an informed soldier never get overwhelmed by surprise attack because he is informed, because he's aware, because he takes precaution. But I want to repeat, I want to repeat, if some of you are hearing this talk about readiness, and bolting doors, and being alert, and all of this and you got worried and you say, "Oh my goodness gracious, this is gonna be hard work," stop, that is not what's all about, it isn't.

In this invisible war, you need to know that the outcome has already been decided. In this invisible war, in this invisible war, the ultimate victory has already been achieved. In this invisible war, the enemy has already been vanquished. Please listen to me. We are the only army in all of history that has been granted success before firing a single shot, amen. Give God glory. Well someone will say, "Well, Michael, I'm not afraid of the devil". Praise God. That's how it ought to be. That's how it ought to be. You must never be afraid of the enemy of your soul. You must never be afraid of Satan, never. But here's the question. Here's the question. Is Satan afraid of you? Is Satan afraid of you? That really is more important? I mean, just think about this, is he afraid of you? This is a far more important question. What have you done lately to scare the devil? What victory have you scored to make him run for his life and run for cover?

I promise you, the devil does not want some of you to hear the rest of this message. In fact, I think the devil will try to stop some of you from hearing the rest of this series. I promise you, why? Because he knows you're gonna be blessed with the tools for victory over him. And so he will do everything in his power to keep you from becoming alert, aware of his tricks, of his tactics, of his modus operandi. Question, where did the devil come from? Great question. There are two passages in the Bible that tell us exactly where the devil came from, okay. And I want you to just jot them down and please when you go home read them carefully. Isaiah 14:12-15, and Ezekiel 28:11-19. Let me repeat those. Isaiah 14:12 -15, Ezekiel 28:11-19. These two passages give us the most definitive answer to the question about Satan's origin.

Look at verse 12 of Isaiah 14. "How have you fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How are you cut down to the ground, you who have weakened nations"! Listen to me. This is one of those paradoxes in the scripture. Lucifer literally means light bearer, or it could be translated as a brilliant one, or as the shining one. Ezekiel 28:12, that's the other passage. It says, "You were the signet of perfection, full of wisdom perfect in beauty". Now, here is what I need to tell you about Lucifer. He was one of the principle servants of the Lord God in the heavens. He is one of the created angelic beings. Verse 14 of Ezekiel 28, "You were the anointed guardian cherub". Ah, but you must remember this, the light of Lucifer was the light of a mirror. You know how sometimes when sun reflects on the mirror you see light coming out the mirror, it's a reflective light not an original light.

Why do I say this? It's not the torch, it's a reflection because his light was never originating with him. He was so close to the throne of God that he reflected the light of God. And don't ever forget, Lucifer worked in the highest level of heaven and while Moses had to cover his face when he saw in the presence of God, Lucifer didn't, Lucifer was able to look on the throne of God. He was able to voice praise and adoration and worship to God. Oh, beloved, listen to me, this is what makes Satan a cunning and dangerous adversary for us humans if we face him alone. Don't ever try to face him alone. He's been around for a long, long, long, long time, and he knows all the tricks. You only face him with Jesus. Only face him in the power of the Holy Spirit. What happened to Lucifer? Well, he was not only beautiful, perfect, wise, serving at the throne room of God, God gave him a delegated executive authority.

Think about it this way. All your corporate executives think about it. God delegated to him executive authority. Question, how many others were working for him? Well, as the kids will say, zillions. We don't know, there could be billions or trillions, we don't know. There were unnumbered angelic beings. One third of them followed him and his foolishness, and he wanted to conduct a coup d'état. He basically wanted to conduct a coup and unseat God from his throne so that he sits on the throne in order to receive worship. That's really the whole point of it. He wanted to be worshiped then, he wants to be worshiped now. His ego was unstoppable. He wanted to unseat God and take his place. Replacing God, something that millions and millions and millions of people trying to do every single day. They're trying to put the self in the place of God. But listen, it's not only irrational, it's impossible.

Isaiah 14:13, in addressing Satan it says, "You said in your heart, 'I will ascend to heaven above the stars of God, I will set my throne on high.'" In fact, in those two verses, I, I, I will, I will, I will. Five times, five times. Lucifer becomes so proud of his beauty intellect capacity and attainment that he failed to recognize that everything he has was from God and without God he's nothing, actually he is less than nothing. If you forget everything I've said, please, please, please don't forget what I'm gonna tell you.

I'm coming close to the end. Lucifer's sin has been reproduced again, and again, and again, and again, trillions of times again, and again, every single day, but here's what I'm gonna tell you. I could cry. I really could cry. Worse than all of that, worse than all of that, Satan's sin is reproduced among Christians when they fall for his lies. You see, pride is what got Satan thrown out of heaven and pride destroyed many a church leader, why? Because if you are not aware of the sin of pride, if you're not conscious of the sin of pride and constantly repenting of it, it will destroy your judgment. It will make you covet things you have no right to. It will alienate you from God. Whatever form of pride the Lord will reveal to you in your life, hand it over to him, hand it over to him, and then keep on handing it over to him. Keep on handing it. Otherwise, you'll open the door wide for Satan to come in, in one of the doors that I talked about.
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