Nothing is more encouraging than when the devil is on the run.
Resistance is indispensable when lifting weights and using exercise equipment to build muscles. If too little weight is placed on the bar, muscles aren’t challenged to heft it. Current muscle mass may be maintained and toned, but increased muscle mass probably won’t occur. A similar circumstance materializes when using exercise equipment. If the resistance isn’t increased, muscle mass won’t be challenged and therefore increase. Resistance may not be pleasant, but toning and increasing muscle depend on it.
Resistance is also essential when confronting my arch enemy Satan. “So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7 NLT)
Since the beginning of time, Satan has been the arch instigator of evil. Eve fell to his schemes as did Adam, and so has every human being since then. Me among them. When I fail to resist, I continue to plunge headfirst into his dastardly schemes. Allowing his temptations to get the best of me only leads to disappointment, discouragement, anger, and failure to live up to God’s standards.
James speaks as if I have the power to resist the devil. And I do. But not in my own capacity. Only by relying on the indwelling presence and power of God’s Spirit can I hope to overcome and defeat the work of Satan in my life. God promises no temptation will be so intense that I can’t sidestep Satan’s evil campaigns. I simply have to ask for God’s wisdom to help me see the door of escape.
Continual resistance builds my spiritual muscles. As my spiritual muscle mass intensifies, falling to Satan’s schemes becomes rarer. My successes will outnumber my losses. Eventually, the things that once grabbed my attention-but shouldn’t have, will become less attractive. Satan may tempt me with new distractions, but, like the old ones I no longer desire, I can learn to live without these too.
Let God assist you in resisting the devil so you too can enjoy spiritual success.
Prayer: Eternal and powerful God, we trust Your power to help us resist our enemy and overcome his evil plans to destroy us.