“He (the devil) was a murderer from the beginning and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44).
As we begin Holy Week, the truth of Jesus’ harsh words to those who rejected Him expose the prince of darkness. Every moment of this week reveals God’s tremendous love for us. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. God sent the Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him” (John 4:16-17).
The world was separated from God when the father of lies deceived Adam and Eve. His words, “you will not die” (Gn.3:4) were a lie as their friendship with God did die.
Yes, driven by pride and envy, he was a murderer from the beginning as he knew God could not be deceived. Therefore, he preyed upon the man and woman created in God’s image and likeness (Gn. 1:27) and destroyed God’s loving plan for man and woman–for us.
To restore our friendship, God, who is rich in mercy, sent His Son to save us. This was not just a nice thing that God did for us or a story we retell each year. As Jesus was the innocent victim, the spotless Lamb, who was betrayed, mocked, spat upon, scrouged, crowned with thorns, falsely accused, stripped naked, and nailed to a cross. This was His battle against the father of lies, and He won by conquering sin and death.
Sadly, the deceiver continues to whisper lies as people are readily distracted and approach Holy Week with complacency. Christ is the answer to so much sadness, loneliness, and the sense of feeling unloved. He shed every ounce of blood for every human person so that we all may be united with God and participate in His life. Our purpose is to live in this relationship and shine forth the love of God in a world of brokenness, sorrow, and darkness.
Do not let the ‘murderer’ distract you from opening your mind and heart to the truth of God’s love for you. God is faithful, He searches for you and says, “Where are you?” (Gn. 3:9) for only one reason – Love. He has set you free from the hunter’s snare (Ps.124:7), and in Him, you find rest (Mt. 11:28). Once you are convicted of this truth, you will live the theological virtue of charity fully.