The Soul and Satan: A DialogueBy David Burnette
Thomas Hooker on how to use the Word of God to combat Satan’s accusations:
Satan: Do you not see how weak and poor you are, how destitute of all saving grace, and how contrary you walk to God?
Soul: It is true, yet it is just as true that “whoso confesseth and forsaketh his sin shall have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).
Satan: But do you not see that you are full of pride and weakness, and secretly unwilling to come to duties?
Soul: It is true that I am so, yet I hate this way and desire to forsake it, and therefore shall find mercy. The Word says so in Isaiah 55:7.
Satan: But are you privy to God’s counsel? Secret things belong to God.
Soul: Indeed, I know not what God’s secret will is; yet I know that the Word says that He has no pleasure in the death of a sinner, but invites such daily to come unto Him (Ezekiel 33:11).
Satan: But many deceive themselves. Mercy is as a black swan, a rare bird; and few obtain it. And why then may not you be deceived as well as others?
Soul: But the Lord will not deceive me, and the Lord knows my heart; and the Word knows what the Lord knows.
Satan: But may you not be deceived in the letter of the Word? The Word is true indeed; but how do you know that you rightly apply it, and that the Word and your heart agree together?
Soul: Why, I desire as earnestly to have my sin purged as I do to have it pardoned. I know my heart by the Word, and to the Word I repair. The Lord knows that I hate all sin inwardly, and reform it outwardly, to the extent of my weak power; and therefore I know I shall find mercy. Show me a place of Scripture that says I do not rightly apply the Word, and I will believe it; but I will not believe you, for you are, as you were from the beginning, a liar.
– Thomas Hooker (1586-1647), The Poor Doubting Christian Drawn to Christ, 55-56