Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. ~ Colossians 3:2
Recently someone posed the question: Can Satan read the minds of humans? I am so glad that this question was asked because it caused me to open my Bible and study. Let’s open the Bible together to figure this one out.
The quick answer is NO, the Bible does not support the idea that Satan can read the minds of people; God is the only one who can read minds and the Bible is full of Scriptures to support that only God is omniscient (all knowing) , a few that I found are: Genesis 6:5; Isaiah 66:18 and Psalms 94:11.
In addition to the Scriptures above, Hebrews 4:12-14 affirms that “the word of God”, which is Jesus, is the “discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart”. It is also clear in this passage that “neither is there any creature” that can discern thoughts. Take a look:
Hebrews 4:12-14 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. 14Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.
Something else to consider is that we have examples in the Bible of times when God grants the ability for some of His people to read minds, I think of Peter in the account of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5:1-11.
Satan is a trickster and he uses mediums such as magicians, astrologers, fortunetellers and sorcerers to affect the minds of God’s people but Deuteronomy 18:10-12 tells us that such things are an abomination to the LORD. In the Old Testament we can read of King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream which came from God. The King forgot his dream and he called upon the magicians, astrologers and sorcerers to help him to remember and they could not. Then God gave the same dream to His prophet Daniel and in turn Daniel was able to tell the King about it. You can read about this in Daniel 2.
So rather than reading the minds of people, Satan uses man’s sinful nature to tempt him to do ungodly things. He uses the roots of sin: the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and pride to tempt man, just as he did with Adam and Eve in the Garden (Genesis 3). He tempted Jesus in the desert in the same way (Matthew 4:1-11). And Jesus always responded with Scripture. John warns against allowing worldly things to take over our minds:
1 John 2:15-17 15Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 17And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
The truth is that although Satan cannot “read our mind” he can “pollute our mind” with the ungodly things that this world offers. Then he can study to see what this stuff that we are thinking about causes us to do. When we are busy thinking on the things that we ought not to be thinking on, we are replacing every good thing with junk. The Devil uses that junk against us. Paul admonishes us to renew our minds:
Romans 12:1 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
The way that we “renew” our minds is to be daily in the Word (Psalms 119:11; Ephesians 4:23; Colossians 3:16; 1 Peter 1:13). We must have regular time that we spend reading and meditating upon God’s Word (the Bible) or the things of this world will creep in and muddy up our minds and help Satan to use that “junk” to lead us into temptation.
Paul encourages us about the things that we should think on:
Philippians 4:8-9 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
The above passage comes with a promise of peace. When we are busy spending time doing what pleases God, we will naturally avert the wiles of the devil. Our greatest defense in fighting off the attacks of Satan is to take on the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God and then he will have nothing that he can use to make us fall into temptation (Ephesians 6:10-18).
Satan cannot read your mind, but he can use his devices to pollute your mind, study your reactions and tempt you to do the things that will not please the LORD. How long did it take you to read this post and study the Scriptures that I offered? Consider this: All the time that you spent here was time that you used to study the things of God. You have renewed your mind and you have defended your mind against the Enemy. Praise God for that!