Evil is running rampant in our world. Don't be like an ostrich and hide your head in the sand thinking it won't touch you or your loved ones. Instead, we are to be proactive and engaging in spiritual battle.
The first step is to submit to God. Is there sin in your life? You can't beat evil if evil has a hold on you. You must first get things straightened out with God.
Once you've made things right, then it is time to resist!
The Word promises us that if we resist the devil, not only will he leave us, he will flee. In other words, you can stand your ground and run the devil off.
How do we resist? By getting ever closer to God. The closer you are to God, the less chance the devil has to get his teeth into you. The Word also tells us when resisting, we are to cleanse our hands and purify our hearts. The devil cannot get his hooks into you if you are living a righteous life. (A righteous life is one where you are in right-standing with God. No sin is separating you and God.)
Cleansing our hands and purifying our hearts makes me think of being washed with the water of the Word. If the Word reigns in your thoughts it will be much easier to say no to temptation.
A passage that I find comforting is 1 Corinthians 10:13 that tells us that there are no new temptations. He has seen it all, but He promises to make a way of escape from each and every temptation. I've often heard people say they just didn't have the power to escape temptation; but, what I've noticed is that people will put themselves into an environment where they can easily fall into sin. If you're an alcoholic, hanging out at happy hour at the neighborhood bar and grill is not the place for you. Those subject to impure thoughts need to stay away from the swimsuit edition of Sports Illustrated or the Victoria's Secret catalog. If you are tempted to gossip, don't hang out on coffee break with known tale-bearers. Just sayin'.
The next time you face temptation, don't just start shaking in your boots. Stand your ground and remind the devil you are a blood-bought child of God. Resist! And when God reveals a way of escape, take it.
Tomorrow we will talk about defense and offense.
Scripture links for further study:
- James 4:6-8
- Ephesians 5:26
- 1 Corinthians 10:13
- Hebrews 10:21-23
- 1 Corinthians 6:10-12
- Revelation 1:5
- Revelation 7:14
This post is Day 17 of my series, 31 Basics for Believers. You can find all the posts here.