I don’t like to brag about my good works, or my unselfish acts of service to my country. But I must share this.
Yesterday I received a call from the United States Treasury Department. The nice man with an Indian accent said I qualified to receive $8400 from the government. Wow! My lucky day, I thought.
I asked what I had done to deserve this. He replied that because I had faithfully paid my taxes every year, never filed for bankruptcy, and built up a good credit rating, the government wanted to reward me.
“Yes,” he assured me.
“How much?” I asked again.
“$8400.” was his promise.
However, as I thought about it for a moment, I had to turn down this nice jester! I told the U.S. Department official, that I really appreciated it. But with the government being broke and going heavily into debt, I didn’t feel right about taking the $8400. So, I told him the government could keep the money. “They need it worse, than I do,” I kindly told the Treasury worker.
Surprisingly he just hung up! I thought he would at least say, “Thank you!” After all, how many people would turn down $8400 out of patriotic devotion for their country?!
Following the call, I went to Arby’s for a fried-chicken salad. All the while smiling, and feeling so good about myself!
Actually, as I thought more about it, I wondered, “Do people really believe this stuff?” I guess some do. Are folks really fooled by these scams? Evidently. Or the man with the Indian accent would find another line of work. Incidentally, this guy sounded like the “Microsoft technician” who called me last month about “problems with my computer.” He said he would help me!
Falling for these scams is not much different from falling prey to Satan’s schemes. When you think about it, the Devil comes up with some pretty incredible lines. When he calls you, he says things like:
“No one will know.”
“Go ahead and take a peek.”
“You deserve to be happy.”
“There’s lot of money in this for you.”
“Everyone is doing it.”
“You can’t help it.”
“You’re only human.”
“If you love him, you will.”
“Your wife doesn’t understand you.”
“Go ahead. One drink never hurt anyone.”
“Everything is relative. There’s no absolute truth.”
“You have a right to your private life.”
“Where’s God when you need him?’
“You will not surely die.”
And the list goes on. Ad nauseam.
But the devil is liar! Jesus said so. He called the devil “a murderer from the beginning.” And further warned that the devil, “does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it” (John 8:44).
However, Satan speaks convincingly. He is cunning. Crafty. And tricky. Because of his unscrupulous behavior, the Bible warns us to sober-minded and watchful. To be strong and stand up against his wiles. To be armed spiritually to fight against his sinful shenanigans.
When the Devil calls, refuse his age-old ruse. Let him know that you don’t believe him. And that you’re not buying! Hang up, if necessary. Or maybe a little humor will cause him to hang up! But above all follow James’ advice:
“Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you”
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman