first attack Satan made was against the home. He invaded Eden and led the first husband and wife into disobedience and judgment. Satan is still attacking the home today. This does not mean that all wrecked homes are the fault of Satan, for often the flesh has a lot to do with the problems. If a Christian marries out of God’s will, the enemy can have a field day in that home. If either or both partners are too immature for the demands of marriage, Satan can find openings for subtle (and not so subtle) attacks. If the married couple does not obey the Bible and “leave father and mother” but instead permits the parents to interfere, then Satan has an easy time attacking that marriage.
There are some specific areas of attacking mentioned in the Bible, and these should be noted by Christians who are married:
“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the later times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron. Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth” (1Timothy 4:1-3).
Our Lord makes it clear in Matthew 19:12 that not everyone is supposed to get married. Some people are hindered from marriage because of birth, perhaps some physical problem. Others cannot marry because of the responsibilities men have placed upon them; and still others must remain single in order to serve God better. Singleness is a Christian option if God so wills; but for most people, marriage is the will of God. However, Satan’s approach is to convince the person to stay single and just live together as the better option avoiding the commitment that comes with marriage. But we know according to the Word of God that “Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge” (Hebrews 13:4). This compromise of living together outside of marriage has become commonplace in our society today and it is destroying the foundational fabric of marriage. The only sexual relationship that God endorses and blesses is that of one man with one woman, for one lifetime in biblical marriage. All other sexual relationships are condemned and judged by God.
“Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve” (1Timothy 2:11-13). “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body” (Ephesians 5:22-23).
Headship is not dictatorship. Headship is leadership demonstrated with agape love. Christ is the Head of the church in a living, loving relationship; likewise, the husband ought to be the head of the wife in a living, loving relationship. Please note that the subjection of the woman is not subjugation. Man and woman are made out of the same basic material. Additionally, they are one in Jesus Christ (Galatians 3:28). God in His infinite wisdom gave the role as spiritual leader in the home to the man. This role cannot be shared, for anything with two heads is a monster.
This is not to suggest that husbands are more spiritual than their wives. Since they are the spiritual leaders in the home, they ought to be more spiritual, but often, they are not. But wise is that dedicated Christian woman who encourages her husband in the spiritual things of the Lord and helps him be a better spiritual leader in the home.
Satan desires to disrupt the chain of command that God has ordained. If he can readjust the chain of command, then the marriage at best will be unstable. May each one of us strive by the grace of God to fulfill our God-given role in the family unit.
I read somewhere that 50% of married couples admit that one partner or the other had been unfaithful. Usually these affairs have been passing experiences, not repeated; but they have had in them the seeds of all kinds of problems in the home. This is why Paul wrote:
“Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: it is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife. Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency” (1Corinthians 7:1-5).
Several principles emerge from this important passage of Scripture. First, sex in marriage is not sinful, and there must be mutual understanding that governs the intimate life of the Christian couple. We are not supposed to “use” each other selfishly. Second, abstinence is permitted for a season for spiritual reasons; but do not put yourself into a place of temptation. Satan is so subtle that he can tempt a Christian man who is simply driving down the highway and innocently looks up at a billboard! Marriage is one help to spirit-control in the area of sex.
It has been my experience as a Christian physician and as an evangelist for Reformers Unanimous that the husband and wife who are considerate of one another, and who fulfill their marriage vows and follow the Bible will not be interested in any other man or woman. Satan knows when husbands and wives are robbing each other, and he arranges for extramarital opportunities to gratify the normal desires of the body. Husbands and wives who use sex as a weapon with which to fight, instead of a tool with which to build are asking Satan to wreck their home.
Satan Gets The Wife Too Busy Outside The Home.
According to 1Timothy 5:9-16, the early church had an organized program for assisting Christian widows. There were, of course, no government agencies or welfare programs in that day. The widows had to qualify before the church would accept them. Paul counsels the younger widows:
“I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully. For some are already turned aside after Satan” (1Timothy 5:14-15).
The yielded Christian wife should find her primary purpose along with her joy and fulfillment in her home. Be that as it may, Satan is eager to get the wife away from the home and interested in exciting experiences apart from her husband and family. This kind of temptation is especially dangerous to the gifted wife who has abilities she can barter in the business world. I am not saying that it is wrong for a wife to work outside the home. I am saying that both the husband and wife had better be alert to Satan’s temptations. When outside the home is more inviting and exciting than inside the home, then you can be sure Satan is at work to wreck that marriage. The woman described in Proverbs 31 did much of her work outside of the home. However, her desire was God’s will. Her purpose in life was to care for and build her family. She found her joy and fulfillment in her home, not outside of her home.
It is a serious thing to be a husband or wife, a father or mother. God holds the husband responsible for the spirituality of the home (Ephesians 5:18). Satan attacks the husband and father, seeking to lead him out of the will of God. Satan also attacks the wife and mother. This is why Christian couples need to read the Word and pray daily along with finding a ministry inside their local church where they can serve God as a couple, or if they have children, as a family unit. Invariably when I have encountered a family having problems, I discovered that either the husband or wife, or in some cases both, have stopped praying and reading the Word daily.
Your home needs the same spiritual defenses as the individual: the inspired Word of God, the imparted grace of God, the indwelling Spirit of God, and the interceding Son of God.