Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. (James 4:7b)
Pastor John’s Notes:
Jesus Christ is our victorious king. He has overcome the power of our enemy the devil. While the devil is now powerless, he does have the ability to influence us. He now works covertly and directs his primary effort in temptation and the corruption of our thought life. If he can influence us by corrupting and redirecting our thoughts, he gains power. But we can resist. Once the enemy is correctly identified and resisted, he becomes powerless again and flees.
It is important to understand that as free-will agents, we are continually open to suggestion. The Holy Spirit, present within every believer, is a continual source of wisdom and enlightenment. But we also have our own thoughts as well as ideas suggested to us by outside sources. Our enemy can use many different sources to sway us. The devil even used Simon Peter once to sway the mind of Christ, at which point Jesus cried out, “Get behind me, Satan!” It takes a great deal of careful thought to discern the source of our ideas, whether they come from God, from within ourselves, or from the enemy. When we understand that an idea comes from the enemy, we are to resist and rebuke him. Once this is done, he will leave us.
Lord, give me a discerning heart to perceive the devil’s schemes. Also give me a discerning heart so that I can hear your voice. Teach me how to resist and rebuke the enemy once he is identified. Set me free from every snare he might set for me.