THE REAL ENEMY

Scripture Reading: I Peter 5:6-11

“Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.” (I Peter 5:8,9)

Yesterday we dealt with anxiety. God tells us what to do when we become anxious — “casting all your anxieties upon Him, for He cares for you.” Most anxiety comes from fear. We become afraid of what we may experience. But we must remember that fear does not come from God — “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (II Timothy 1:7). So, what is the source of our fear and anxiety?

The real enemy is the devil. He is the ultimate adversary. He attacks us when we are weak — “the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” He comes to us when we are most vulnerable and causes us to doubt, to fear, and to be anxious. He robs us of the joy and peace God wants us to have. He is a thief and a liar. He causes us to have anxious thoughts, and his attacks are relentless.

Therefore, we have to be sober-minded. We must realize that Satan is the real enemy, and that he causes us to fear, for God has not given us a spirit of fear. We must be aware of his tactics and we must know our enemy. In addition to being sober-minded, we must be watchful. Expect him to show up. Expect him to sow seeds of doubt. Expect him to cause us to be fearful and anxious. Expect him to cause conflict and division.

When the devil attacks us, we must resist him. Remember what Jesus did when Satan attacked Him during His forty days in the wilderness — Jesus quoted Scripture to him (Matthew 4:1-11). Why did Jesus do this? Because of the power of the Word of God; it is the sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17). The Word of God is our offensive weapon against Satan. When he brings doubt, fear and anxiety, take out your sword. Quote Scripture to him. Go on the offensive. When our Lord Jesus did this to Satan, we are told — “Then the devil left Him” (Matthew 4:11a).

We must resist Satan and we must remain firm in our faith. We have to trust our Lord Jesus Christ no matter what. We have to fix our eyes on Him, who is the the founder and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:2). We must remember how much Jesus cares for us, and how He comes to us in our distress and carries our sorrows. He alone is able to deliver us from this trial. He alone can take away our fear and anxiety. But we have to be firm in our faith.

This passage is so appropriate considering the worldwide trial we are experiencing — “the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.” This is a world-wide pandemic. When we pray, let’s not only pray for ourselves and our loved ones, but let’s remember to pray for all who are suffering throughout the world. They are experiencing the same kinds of fear and anxieties that we are.

Lord Jesus Christ, You are my King and my Lord. You defend me from the attacks of the evil one. His doom is sure. Enable me to be sober-minded, to be watchful, to resist the devil, and to remain firm in my faith. Let me keep my eyes on You. I pray for all throughout the world who are filled with fear and anxiety. I pray that You will use this trial to bring many to Yourself and to strengthen the faith of Your own.

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2 thoughts on “THE REAL ENEMY

  1. Sharon Goodman says:

    This morning I am quite anxious. I am waiting to hear from my sister who is having a second mammogram because the first one showed something questionable. My sister had breast cancer 15 years ago. I had breast cancer 2 years ago.
    Your devotion this morning has reminded me of who the real enemy is…and it’s not cancer. Thank you for helping me to remember to cast my cares on Jesus and trust Him through this time of uncertainty.
    I praise God for working through you to draw all of us closer to our loving Savior.

    • Shelton Sanford says:

      Sharon,

      I just read your comments. I am praying for you and for your sister this morning as I prepare to post another devotional.

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