Preserved in Jesus Christ – Day 14
Know Your Enemy
When the late captain of the South African National Cricket team, Hansie Cronje, was involved in a match-fixing scandal, he admitted his complicity. His excuse that it was the devil that made him do it, was met with scorn and ridicule.
How delighted Satan must have been by that reaction. The more people scoff at the belief that Satan exists and is active in the lives of men, the better he can go about his godless activities, tempting men to rebel against God.
The Bible reveals Satan as the greatest enemy of God and man. In Ephesians 2:2, he is described as the ruler of the spiritual powers in space, the spirit who now controls the people who disobey God.
It is a mistake to ignore his existence and an even bigger mistake to under-estimate the influence and impact he can have on those you love.
Jesus was well prepared for his encounter with Satan (Matthew 4:1-11). He had just been baptised and received his Father’s seal of approval, when the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the desert where he fasted for 40 days.
There, the devil tempted the hungry Jesus to turn stones into bread, to test God’s love for him and finally, he offered Jesus all the worlds’ kingdoms if he would worship him. The Bible tells us that after Jesus rejected the devil, angels came and ministered to him.
Satan comes to us with his devilish tricks in our most vulnerable moments. He can leave us emotionally battered and bruised, but he can be resisted effectively. For Satan is a conquered enemy. His power and dominion over believers was broken at the cross (John 12:31).
If we submit to God and resist the devil, he will be powerless to harm us. He will run away (James 4:7).