Question: “Why does God allow Satan to attack us?”
Answer: Satan’s attacks against us come in various forms. 1) He uses the ungodly world (which he controls, 1 John 5:19) to stir up fleshly lusts within us that tempt us to sin. 2) He uses the unbelieving world to attempt to deceive us with worldly “wisdom” opposed to God’s truth. 3) He uses false Christians to try to mislead us into a false gospel centered on a false Jesus. 4) He sometimes physically afflicts us or our loved ones with sickness, crime, tragedy, or persecution. Knowing that God is the sovereign Ruler of the universe, we naturally ask, why does God allow Satan to attack us in these ways?
The Bible teaches that God allows Satan a certain amount of freedom (see Job 1:12), but that freedom is always limited. Satan cannot do all that he wishes. Satan chooses to attack God’s children (see 1 Peter 5:8), and his design is always evil; Satan is a murderer (John 8:44). In contrast, God’s design in allowing certain satanic attacks is always good; God loves His children (1 John 4:16). Joseph faced many satanic attacks in his lifetime, but in the end he could speak with confidence of two opposing purposes behind the same events: “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good” (Genesis 50:20).
We cannot blame God for what Satan does. Our vulnerability to satanic attack started with Adam’s choice to follow Satan’s lying suggestions in the garden of Eden. When Satan attacked Job through the loss of his family, wealth, and health, Job didn’t blame God. Notice Job 1:21–22, “And he (Job) said: Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.”
As believers experience the attacks of Satan, they can trust the truth of Romans 8:28, “We know that all things work together for good to those who love God…” Therefore, the assumption is that we will experience “good” things and “bad” things, but “all” of these things can be made to contribute toward “good” ends as God works them out. So even the attacks of Satan, although evil, can and will have a “good” result, ultimately, as God uses them to conform us to Christ, His Son (see Romans 8:29). Attacks from Satan, along with all other tribulations, can cause believers to love God more, resist Satan more, practice patience, and grow stronger in our faith in many other ways. Praise God for His sovereign protection. Thank Him for His plan to make everything—even Satan’s attacks—”work together for good” for you!