“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” 1 Peter 5:8
This is one of the most instructive verses in the Bible, concerning our “adversary, the devil” because he is not just an adversary or the adversary; he is “your adversary”, i.e. our personal opponent! This verse shows us our need to be in control of ourselves (sober) and watchful (vigilant) for this relentless enemy. This verse also teaches us that “the devil” is not an evil force, or an imaginary character, he is a “he”, an entity, with a personality and a “will”.
“And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.” 2 Timothy 2:26
What a horrible thought to be “captive” or bound by the devil, by contrast God’s desire is to loose us, and set us free (John 8:36)! “Your adversary” is a “thief” who comes “to steal, and to kill, and to destroy” (John 10:10) and will use “any means” to corrupt our “minds”, “through his subtilty”!
“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” 2 Corinthians 11:3
“Your adversary” is a “deceiver” (Job 12:6), he has “false apostles…deceitful workers… ministers” (2 Cor. 11:13-15) who counterfeit God’s words and works. He is a thief that “taketh away the word that was sown” in people’s hearts (Mark 4:15) to hinder their salvation. Satan is a “liar, and the father of it” (John 8:44), misapplying scripture, desiring to be worshipped (Mt. 4:1-10). Satan is the “tempter” (1 Thess. 3:5) seeking to “sift you as wheat” (Luke 22:31). Satan is the “accuser of our brethren” (Revelation 12:10) trying to overwhelm believers with guilt. He is a “dragon” (Revelation 12:3) and the “king of terrors” (Job 18:14), our only hope is to “resist the devil” through submission to God.
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7
Have you noticed how close the word devil is to “evil”, just one letter different; and how similar God is to “good”? Our need, as stated above, is to overcome evil (devil) with good (God)!
“Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21
Have you submitted yourself unto God yet? If not, then you are “lost”, and blinded by the “god of this world” (2 Corinthians 4:4), you are still in “darkness”, and still under the “power of Satan”.
“To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.” Acts 26:18
Friend, open your eyes to the light and receive “forgiveness of sins” by praying for God to “avenge” you of your “adversary” like the widow in Christ’s story below. No one is so bad that they cannot be saved and no one is so good that they don’t need to be saved. Don’t get devoured, be saved today…
“And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary.” Luke 18:3
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