The enemy, the devil, Satan, is strategic in his driven efforts to “steal, kill, and destroy” our life in Christ. Though he utilizes temporal things in this life and in this world, his goal is to secure an eternal impact in our lives that will result in us separating from God.
He may use one massive event, or a swarm of smaller events; he may carry out his plans all in one day, or work them over a long period of time, either way he uses everything that is at his disposal. He is limited by God, but he is not yet totally locked up; that day is coming, but for now he runs amuck.
At this point some might say, “You are going to trigger fear in your readers, they are going to think they see the devil’s minions behind every tree!”
First of all, Jesus encourages us to not give way to fear. Second, fear is not avoided or conquered by remaining ignorant of truth and reality. Third, “perfect love casts out fear” (1 John 4:18) so the more we fall in love with God the more fear will be driven from our hearts. If we are overcome with fear, let us draw near to God with our whole heart, with all of our mind, and by utilizing all our strength in our pursuit of Him.
Discerning the devil’s current strategies should be done through praying in partnership with the Holy Spirit. He is our Counselor, our Peace, our Teacher, and the source of our discernment. While we can (and should) discern a lot of things through the use of our limited intellect and our incomplete knowledge of the scriptures, it is the Holy Spirit that will take our blurred vision and provide the final focusing of our spiritual eyes.
So, let me encourage us all to engage in prayer as we study the scriptures and as we evaluate our strengths and weaknesses.
One of the enemy’s strategies is to test our defenses with small tests; they are tests, not attacks. If we are having small incidences of temptation in our life, the enemy just might be clandestinely hidden nearby testing the perimeter of our life to see where a full-on attack with temptation would be most effective.
Has the enemy been discreetly testing one of your weaknesses lately? Has he been doing reconnaissance by using small things to test your resolve in your defenses?
If we are willing to fulfill a small temptation, we just might fall for a big version of the temptation which would be tantamount to a 2,000 pound bomb being detonated in our life. The destruction in our life (and perhaps the lives of our friends and family) would be enormous.
The following passage may be very familiar to us, but let’s be deliberate in slowly reading every word of it. After all, it is from the Word of God; the scriptures are always supernatural in truth and in their effect upon our lives… if we will receive them deep into our mind, our heart, and our soul.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.
In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”
~ Ephesians 6:10-18
Let’s be faithful and discerning Watchmen on the security walls of our lives. The enemy has not left the battlefield, he has not quit the war. He is very much active in preparation, in reconnaissance, in testing our perimeters, in propaganda, in psychological warfare, and in full-on assaults. He does not sue for peace, and he does not take prisoners “alive” unless he thinks that they can be turned for his use or tortured for his pleasure.
“… in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes.”
~ 2 Corinthians 2:11
Lest we give too much of our attention to the enemy, let us draw near to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, let us worship Him, and let us give Him the honor and glory in our daily lives in all that we do and in all that we are. After all, He has a great strategy for our victory, if we will keep in step with Him at every moment!
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