Tuesday, November 6, 2012

1 Peter 5:8-9

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.

Since the beginning of mankind, one has sought to undermine and destroy the glorious work of God. History has given Him many titles, “the Deceiver,” “Old Slewfoot,” “the Devil.” His myriad of titles all seemingly leave those who utter them with a sense of darkness and evil that is intrinsic to the one who holds the titles. His titles all give an indication as to the goal of the devil. He seeks not to build, but to destroy. He does not desire to help, but to hurt. His heart is one of rebellion. His mind is one of deception. His actions drip with subversion and sabotage. Any thing of his that seems like light ends in darkness. All promises he makes are hollow and misleading. Here in 1 Peter 5, God tells us of the devil’s ultimate purpose in dealing with believers: “as a roaring lion, [he is] seeking whom he may devour.” Being devoured by a lion is not something that you recover from. National Geographic sometimes plays the “lion vs. gazelle” clip (as a hint, the gazelle loses). At the end of the clip, the gazelle doesn’t go prancing off into the sunset. Rather, it’s carcass lies in the middle of the savannah reeking of destruction and decimation. This is the devil’s end game for us. He does not offer us pleasure in sin for our own good, but rather because he knows in the end we will be battered and gutted spiritually. God knows this, and issues this warning. Just as it is not wise for the gazelle to hang out near the lion’s den, we should wisely guard our hearts and minds from the destruction pits that Satan often uses to maim God’s Kingdom builders. God goes one step further and tells us how to resist this devastating force: “faith.” Our only hope in the face of an adversary is not our reasoning power (for that was what failed Eve), but rather it is a surrendered reliance on the only One who can help, and Who has eternally already defeated this subverter.
Food For Thought: Read James 4:7. What two steps does James give to us regarding overcoming our foe?