: Authority Over
The Devil !
"These signs shall follow those who believe: They shall use the authority of my name to cast out demons... " (Mark 16:17 smf).
"Submit yourselves to God Resist the devil and he will flee from you " (Jas 4:7).
"Be watchful and
careful. Your enemy the devil prowls and roams around like a roaring
lion looking for someone to devour to tear apart and eat. Be firm in
the faith and resist him... " (1 Pet 5:8,9 smf).
Who is the real lion? Jesus is!
The Scriptures refer to Him as "the Lion of the tribe of Judah" (Rev 5:5). Because we abide in Him, and He in us, we also share in His "lion-nature": We who believe on Jesus become "lion-like. "
"The wicked flee when no one is chasing them. The righteous, however, are as bold as a lion " (Prov 2 8:1 smf).
b. Don't Give Him Power. What are we trying to say? Simply this: The devil can have only as much power over our lives as we allow him to take. He no longer has the authority to control our attitudes and actions for his own purposes.
No, the devil is not a real lion. His roar, however, can be very loud and very long. A roar cannot bite, but it can scare you.
If we retreat every time the devil roars, we will never learn how to stand firm in the faith and resist him. If we never resist the devil, we will never see the tail-end of the devil heading over the nearest hill.
c. Run Toward The Roar. When the lions go hunting, they are very clever. All the younger, strong lions gather down-wind from the herd of animals they are going to attack. In this way, the animals do not pick up the scent of the lion.
The old worn-out lions, whose teeth are almost gone, and who cannot run fast enough to catch prey, are put upwind where their scent and roar will frighten the animals. Those who are frightened by the roar, run toward the young lions.
The animals who "run towards the roar" are safe and cannot be hurt by the old lions. The animals who flee from the roar run into the trap and are injured or killed by the strong younger lions.
The point is obvious. Don't run from your adversary the devil and his roaring. Run toward the roar. Resist him and he will flee from you.
d. Seeds Of Deception.
How does the devil roar his way into our daily lives? He does so by way of our thoughts and feelings. He sows seeds of doubt and fear into the ground of our hearts and minds. If he can tempt us to cultivate or nurture these seeds - they will grow into very large weeds. When they do, our Christian life can be greatly weakened, or even destroyed.
There are all kinds of seeds which the devil sows: seeds of doubt, fear, disobedience, greed, lust, jealousy, pride, anger, resentment, self-pity and many more.
He will try to sow the same seed over and over again until some take root and grow. Once the roots grow deep, it's hard to pull the weed out.
The devil will even deceive us into thinking it is a natural part of our life. We then give in and put up with it, even though it may be painful to us - and to others. When we do, the enemy has taken control over that part of our lives, even though he has no authority to do so.
3. Resist The Devil !
a. Stand Firm In Faith.
How then can the watchful Christian stand firm in the faith and resist the devil? The same way Jesus did in His humanity while here on earth:
1) By the authority of God's Word; 2) By the power of God's Spirit.
We now know that the devil no longer has dominion or the right to rule over our lives. The scepter is now in Jesus' hand, not that of the enemy. As we, by the Spirit, speak out our confession of faith, "JESUS IS LORD!" - Satan must bend his knee and bow his head. It is demon powers who will tremble in torment when we face them in the mighty Name of Jesus.
b. Speak The Word In Faith.
As we submit and come under the authority of God's Word and God's Spirit, that authority comes upon us. We then speak that word as follows:
The Spirit Himself then moves to energize the word, and the enemy flees along with his lying thoughts and feelings.
We submit to God by filling our minds with His Word and our hearts with prayer. For every wrong, evil, negative thought the enemy would sow into our minds, there is a right, good, positive thought from God's Word.
The Scripture says we can "overcome evil with good" (ROM: 12:21). Every time the devil seeks to give us a push in the wrong direction, we need to push him back - twice as hard - with the truth and power of God's Word.
c. The Laugh Of Faith. It is true, we should not take our enemy lightly or under-rate his ability. He is both smart and strong. Apart from God's Spirit and His Word we will lose every battle. Satan can outsmart us every time. The Scripture says that we are always to be aware of his clever tricks and schemes (2Cor 2:1 1).
However, while we are to respect the devil, we are not to fear him. In fact, we can boldly oppose him in the strong Name of Jesus and be assured of victory.
Our enemy has a loud roar, but his is a big bluff. He will act like he is not hurt, and even mock the Name of the Lord, hoping we will give up.