Do You Know Your Enemy?

Did you know that we have an enemy?  This enemy is called the devil and he endeavors to fight us in our Christian life every day.  Let me be clear this enemy is not a cartoon that carries a pitchfork wearing red leotards.  The devil is a spirit that is fighting and waring against Christians today.  His job is to defeat us, and the devil’s goal in life is to destroy our faith in God.

Today I want to share the schemes the devil uses to snare people. Or we could say it another way – I’ll share with you the devil’s attributes.

  • The devil is a liar, so he lies to us
  • The devil’s goal is to ruin your soul and body.
  • The devil is the ruler of the physical world, not the spiritual world
  • If you are a sinner today, the Bible teaches that you are under the power of Satan (the devil) and not God.
  • The devil wants to blind the mind of those who do not know God
  • The devil has nothing good to offer you, but he’ll make it look good.
  • We can find places in the Bible where the devil will inflict disease on God’s people.
  • The devil’s job is to oppose the righteous, and he does in any way available to him.

Maybe right now, you are thinking, “You give this spirit a lot of definition! He seems strong!”  Well, I can share with you that through the power of our mighty God, we have the ability to defeat the devil!  So even though the devil is powerful, we can defeat him in our lives by turning ourselves toward Jesus.

Many people in this world want to live better than they do, but the devil keeps getting the upper hand with them again and again.  Well-intended people will try to get victory on their own, but they keep falling back into sin that they swore they would never do again.  Today I want to share with you how to defeat the devil.  Because that’s what God wants for us.  He wants us to have the ability to destroy the devil’s powers every day in our life.

The first thing to remember about defeating the devil is that “There is a devil, and he wants to devour you.”

1Peter 5:8

“8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”

So the scripture teaches us– there is a devil, and he absolutely wants to devour us.  We know when Jesus was born into the world, the devil was working hard that day, and all his forces came to be.  Remember, at that time, the king heard of Jesus’s birth and had all the babies killed?  The devil knew the Messiah had been born and would provide a way to destroy the works of the devil.  But let me tell you today, God is more powerful than the devil ever will be!

In Bible history, when the people crucified and sealed Jesus in the tomb, they thought the devil won, and I believe the devil thought he won too.  But the truth is God defeated the devil on the third day when He raised Christ from the dead!  From that time forward, God’s people could defeat the devil through the power of Christ.  If we look back at 1Peter, it says, “There is a devil, he’s our adversary, he’s our enemy, and he wants to devour us.”  Today, you might say, “Brother Ross, I don’t have any enemies.”  Trust the Bible; you do!  The devil is your enemy!

What does the devil do?  Verse 8 of 1Peter chapter 5 shows that he prowls around looking for a victim to devour.  We know what lions do in the wild; they lay in wait and stalk their victims.  When we read accounts of people who have encountered these big cats like lions and tigers, the common piece in the story is that they could feel eyes watching them.  The scripture is true. The devil is stalking and endeavoring to devour us.

Another thing that lions and the devil have in common is they are both opportunists.  Lions are masters of the surprise attack!  If you are moving along in life and everything seems to be going smooth – look out!  The devil may be preparing to pounce!

1Corithians 10:12

“12 Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.”

This scripture teaches us that we need to be carefully watching for the enemy at all times.  We need to take heed, be careful, and make sure that we are ready for the enemy’s attack.  Another characteristic shared by the devil and lions is looking for weaknesses to exploit.  When we study lions and their behavior, we learn that lions often pick out the weakest member of the herd.  So when the lion is hunting for its meal, it’s also looking for the weakest to attack.  The steps are simple; 1) the lions find the weakness, 2) then exploit it.  The devil works the same way in peoples’ lives.  My challenge to you today is that if you have a weakness in your life and know this, take it to God and deal with the weakness.  Because I guarantee if you know you have a weakness, the devil knows it too, and he’s watching.

James 5:16

“16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”

When we honestly address the problems in our lives and confess them earnestly in prayer, the devil loses the opportunity to take advantage of our weakness. Don’t forget; the devil is endeavoring to destroy you!  He wants to take away your faith and destroy your ability to serve God!  But today, we can defeat the devil through the power of the blood of our dear Lord Jesus Christ!  Victory over the devil begins with the blood of the lamb of Christ!  This experience is not something we earn or grow into.  Our victory is entirely about Jesus and what He did for us on the cross.  When we give our heart to Jesus, we claim the “blood of the lamb” on our life.  It’s then the devil is defeated.

This verse in Revelation describes the angels at the throne praising God, and we hear them say:

Revelation 5:12

“12 Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.”

Today I can tell you that Christ is this lamb, He is worthy of our praise, and when we give our heart to Him, we have the power to defeat the devil in our lives.

The first way we defeat the devil is by giving our hearts to God.  The second way we can defeat the devil is with the bold word of our witness.  If you possess Salvation, you have a testimony.  To defeat the enemy, we need to use our testimony or witness as a tool for God against the devil.  A witness or a testimony is speaking with your voice about what God has done for you.  You can do this in church, outside of church, and you can do this with your friends.  God wants you to be a witness for Him.  I will share something with you the devil doesn’t want to hear.  He doesn’t want to listen to you praising or giving God glory for the things God has done in your life.  So we can defeat the devil with our witness because the devil doesn’t want to hear us praising God.

The last way to defeat the devil in our lives is not being in love with ourselves.  In other words, we can’t be in love with ourselves and expect to defeat the devil in our life.  We must have Jesus as both our Savior and our Lord.  Meaning Jesus needs to be our pilot, He needs to be our leader, our director, and the head of our lives.  When we place ourselves above God, the devil can take advantage of our lives.

Romans 12:1

“12 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

Has the devil won too many battles in your heart and life lately?  If so, then one or more of the areas we covered is probably lacking in your experience with Jesus.  Here are a few questions for you to consider.

  1. Have you accepted the blood of the lamb for forgiveness of sins, and accepted His victory over your sins?
  2. Is your testimony clear, and are you using it as a tool to defeat the enemy?
  3. Have you given your heart and body as a living sacrifice or consecrated to Jesus?
  4. Is Jesus truly ruling on the throne of your heart, or is it your “self”?
  5. Would you be willing to die for Christ this morning?

We have an enemy today seeking to devour us.  So how are you doing with this enemy?  I will proclaim to you once again that through the mighty power of the blood of our Lamb Jesus Christ, we can have victory over the devil!  We can defeat him in our lives and have power over sin today!