The lie always begins with the question, “Is God good enough?” That’s what Satan was tempting Eve with, questioning God’s goodness.
The Temptation and Fall of Man
3 Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?”
2 And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’”
4 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
That’s what Satan tried to tempt Jesus with in the wilderness — to question Jesus’ authority and to question whether God, the Father, was a good God who would provide and rescue.
Satan Tempts Jesus
4 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. 3 Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” [If…]
4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”[a]
5 Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, 6 and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written:
‘He shall give His angels charge over you,’
and, [If… again and this is implying a testing of God’s provision… “Will God really provide for your needs?”]
‘In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.’”[b]
7 Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’”[c]
8 Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9 And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”
11 Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.
That’s what Satan does with us every day. He tries to get us to question God’s goodness in the face of so much evil, sadness, suffering.
The enemy wants us to doubt God’s goodness — that He is good enough… to provide fully for us, to protect us from evil, to be with us in the midst of painful circumstances, to use everything for good, to not abandon us…
We often want our independence, but when the consequences come, we want to blame God for not rescuing us from the problems we ourselves have created.
The question is, “Who is holding onto the reins of your life — your past, present, and future?” Is it really God? Or is God on the “side-lines” of your life, the One to Whom you refer at times, to whom you turn only when you are desperate?
The real question is not whether God is good enough. The question is in whom do we believe and on whom do we rely? Ourselves? Another? Circumstances?
Perhaps we aren’t experiencing God’s goodness because we are living independently of it.
Perhaps, we are relying on our own “goodness” or the goodness of the rest of humanity to protect, direct, and influence us.
Maybe that’s why we sense that something is missing…