I PETER 5:8: “Be clear-minded and alert. Your opponent, the Devil, is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” (ISV)
OBSERVATION: How do we win the battle over the enemy of our souls – the Devil? This is an important question, and we must be clear-minded and alert. Many may dismiss the reality of Satan, but Jesus never did. And Jesus never took His enemy for granted. There is a real battle, and there is also a clear pathway for victory.
The pathway for victory is not always what it appears. I have seen so many believers who think that the battle is won by the volume of their prayers, or by the number of times they shout – “I rebuke you Satan!”. Now, don’t get me wrong. I truly believe that we have complete victory over the enemy in the Name of Jesus Christ. Yet, this victory is not found in a shouting match with our adversary. This victory is found in our positioning with our Savior.
The first thing Peter exhorts us to do is to humble ourselves – for in this battle we need the Grace of God!
- “Therefore, humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, so that at the proper time he may exalt you.” (I Peter 5:6, ISV)
Humility recognizes that the battle is not ours, it is the Lord’s! It places us under the mighty hand of God, and positions us in the place where His grace is received. It is Jesus’ victory on the cross that brings the victory, not our strength, efforts, or even the skill or eloquence of our prayer. Humility reminds us that our victory is only found in the Cross of Jesus Christ!
The next thing Peter exhorts us to do is to make the “exchange of grace”. What is this exchange?
- “Throw all your worry on him, because he cares for you.” (I Peter 5:7, ISV)
Worry and fear are the enemies of faith. Humility places us under the mighty hand of God. This hand is opened wide, and waiting for us to commit our worry and fear to Him. Yet, we must place these in His hand. Grace always calls us to faith, and faith always calls us to action. If we truly trust Him, if we truly know that He cares for us – then we will release our grip on the concerns of our life and surrender them into the power of His mighty care! Only when we do this are we prepared to resist the Devil! As long as he has a target on our heart through worry and fear, he will continually land his fiery darts in our life!
Having received God’s great grace, and having surrendered our worry and fear, placing them into His mighty hand, we are now positioned to resist the Devil!
- “Resist him and be firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you by the Messiah Jesus to his eternal glory, will restore you, establish you, strengthen you, and support you.” (I Peter 5:9-10, ISV)
Faith is the assurance of God’s grace and care for our lives. We do not resist the Devil by shouting at him, we resist the Devil by standing firm in our faith, and by leaving all of our worry and fear in God’s mighty hand. This does not always bring instant victory. It brings strength and hope in the battle, and leads us ultimately to the pathway of God’s victory. The enemy will flee, rest assured. Yet, every battle is not over in 5 seconds. Peter makes this clear. “…After we have suffered a little while – the God of all grace, who called us by the Messiah Jesus to his eternal glory, will restore, establish you, strengthen you, and support you!”
Our victory is sure – if we stay under the mighty hand of God – through our Lord Jesus Christ!
Lord, help me to release all of my worry and all of my fear to You today. I know that the battle is Yours and not mine. The victory has already been won on the Cross of Jesus Christ. Help me to stay positioned in Your grace, and be my victory over every attack that the enemy brings against me!
In Jesus Name!