From Diabolical Wars by H.H Pope Shenouda III

10 . He is malicious in his pretended kindness:
His kind words are a malignant means to overthrow people.
He "shows sympathy" for you when you fast and calls you to eat,
for your own health! He warns you against diseases and
weakness! He says to you, "Beware lest you should kill your
body which is a talent with which you may glorify God.
Hearken to the apostle saying, "For no one ever hated his own
flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it...." (Eph 5:29).
He "sympathises" with you when you become spiritually active
and when you keep awake in prayers, reading and kneeling

down in worship (Metania) and calls you kindly to go to sleep
and have rest.
He is so 'kind' that he is anxious about you, fears that you
may fall into 'extravagance' and calls you to limit your
When you are in deep spiritual practices, he says to you, "there
is no need for all this, the fathers teach us that the medium way
has saved many...". Accordingly he says, "Beware of
extravagance lest the devil should strike you with a right blow
which is harder, and lest you should fall in vain glory which is
the worst evil of all vices." He even proceeds to say,
Undoubtedly, this extravagance in struggling is the work of the
devil and he does not intend any good for you! Hearken to the
words of the Holy Bible, "Do not be overly righteous, Nor be
overly wise: Why should you destroy yourself?" (Eccl 7:16).
The 'kind-hearted' devil pities you when you weep for your
He says to you, "Why do you weep and live in sadness, this is
not the way of God... Did not God forgive your sins and wipe
them out with His Blood? Why then do you weep for them?
Do you want to keep weeping till you destroy your nerves and
your soul and be shown up before people? Did not the Holy
Bible say, "Rejoice in the Lord always..." (Phil. 4:4). He goes
on pressing till you lose the humility of heart, lose the tears of
repentance and cool down.
Thus, it becomes easy for you to sin and perhaps you return to
sinning. Of course, he makes you forget the words of the Bible,

"... by the sadness of the countenance, the heart is made
better." (Ecc. 7:3).
The 'kind-hearted' devil justifies your mistakes for you so
that your conscience may not be weary.
He prevents you from rebuking yourself, having regard for your
feelings! He is 'compassionate' for you lest you should fall into
sorrow and despair! Thus, in all your mistakes he offers you
various excuses and justifications advising you, "Do not say of
everything, 'that it is wrong' , and do not rebuke yourself
exceedingly or this will lead you into suspicions. Indeed, this is
wrong, but you did not mean it. Your intentions are good and
they intercede for you and God looks into intentions... It is
wrong, but what could you have done? The circumstances were
pressing and believe me, if I had been in your place I would
have done nothing else. God does not require from you that
which is beyond your ability; so do not be distressed.. "
By justifying your mistakes, he puts your conscience at ease, so
that you are able to swallow a camel, He gets you away from
repentance, from caution and from being on guard and from
honesty in the little things.
The 'kindness' of the devil is not charity, but a means of
overthrowing people. So beware of him, do not listen to him,
be firm with yourself and behave cautiously. Be sure that the
devil is dishonest in all his wars against you; all his pieces of
advice are not faithful even though they may have a good
appearance. He wants nothing but your perdition.
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