We who are Christians have a cunning, deceitful, and busy enemy. He seeks to turn those who follow God away. He even tempted our Lord. His name is SATAN. Concerning him and his activity, Scripture says, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.” (1 Peter 5:8-9).
Christian, notice three courses of action in the above text:
- Be sober, that is, be aware, alert, and awake.
- Be vigilant, that is, be watchful, careful, and on guard.
- Resist, that is, struggle against, and don’t give into.
Consider three things that the devil wants to do:
1. Satan Wants To Keep You Out Of The Lord’s Church. The saved are in the church (Acts 2:47). But the devil doesn’t want you to become a Christian; he doesn’t want you to be part of the saved. You who are reading these words, who have never obeyed the gospel, are right where Satan wants you to be. He is happy! The church preaches the gospel (Ephesians 3:10), glorifies God (Ephesians 3:21), and acts under the leadership of Christ (Colossians 1:18), so Satan is glad you are not part of this activity—he already has you!
2. Satan Wants To Get You Back Into The World. If Satan doesn’t succeed in keeping you out of the church, he will do everything he can to get you back into the world. Certainly the Bible teaches that a Christian can stop serving God and return to the pollutions of the world (2 Peter 2:20-22; Hebrews 10:28-31), and Satan will rejoice if that happens to you. He has succeeded in the past (2 Timothy 4:10; James 4:4), and will be working hard to weaken your faith, corrupt your morals, exhaust your resolve, undermine your convictions, and get you to quit the service of God. If you let him, then he will succeed!
3. Satan Wants To Make You Worthless To The Cause Of Christ. If Satan can’t keep you out of the church or get you back into the world, he will try to make you ineffective to the cause of Christ. He will seek to get you uninvolved in the church and her work. We are to be zealous and active in the service of God 1 Corinthians 15:58; 1 Thessalonians 1:3; James 2:17), so if Satan can keep us ignorant and apathetic, make us lazy and discouraged, get us self-absorbed and self-concerned, he will be successful in making you totally worthless to the cause of Christ. But, he cannot do this if you don’t let him!
Are you a Christian? Are you active and involved in the work of God? Are you seeking first the kingdom? If not, you have succumbed to the enemy! Don’t be ignorant of Satan’s devices (2 Corinthians 2:11). Resist the devil (James 4:7). Be vigilant against the old serpent (Revelation 12:9-10). Don’t befriend the world (1 John 2:15-17). Always allow God to guide your life in all ways and at all times!