THE ENEMY

Scripture Reading: Ephesians 6:10-20

“Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.” (Ephesians 6:11)

It is important to know as much as we can about the enemy. This passage focuses on Satan who is God’s great enemy. He is hell-bent on destroying Christ’s Church. The Bible teaches that there is a personal prince of evil. He is a fallen angel who has great power. However, he is not omnipotent. God alone is omnipotent. Satan is a deceiver and a liar. He is sinister and cunning.

When Satan was cast from heaven, he was filled with fury and envy (Luke 10:18; Isaiah 14:12). Satan’s anger is directed toward God and His people. His purpose is to dishonor God and to defeat God’s people. He walks around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour — “Be sober minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (I Peter 5:8). We must never underestimate Satan’s subtle ways and his deceptive strategies — “And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light” (II Corinthians 11:14).

Satan’s methods are crafty. In our passage his methods are described as “the schemes of the devil.” Here are some of his strategies. He attempts to mix error with just enough truth to make it plausible (Genesis 3:1-5). Satan misquotes Scripture (Matthew 4:6). He masquerades as an angel of light (II Corinthians 11:14). He enters places where you would not expect him (Matthew 24:15). He promises people that good can come through wrongdoing (Luke 4:6,7). He attacks us at our weakest places. He subtly confuses us and leads us into wrong.

Satan has a powerful, well organized army — “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (v. 12). These are not frail human beings; they are a host of evil spirits who war against us.

The good news is that Jesus fights for us — “He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in Him” (Colossians 2:15). Satan’s doom is sure — “And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Revelation 20:9).

Lord Jesus, give me strength to resist the schemes of the devil. Let me see through his crafty ways and enable me to fight against the temptations that he will bring before me today.

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