Sunday, July 16, 2017

"Jesus, would you get that for me?"

The Word for today:
Acts 21:37-22:16
Yesterday, we found out that we are born into citizenship in the kingdom of darkness. The only way to renounce that citizenship is to enter into a new relationship with Jesus Christ.
But when we divorce the devil, does he retain any "visitation rights?" The answer is a resounding "No!" Today we'll examine the scriptural basis for our complete emancipation from our former kingdom and king.
Satan would like us to think he has more power than he does. But Jesus' death and resurrection secured his utter defeat:
The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work. (1 John 3:8)
Satan is powerless because God has taken away his weapons:
Having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. (Colossians 2:15)
Although Satan's ultimate defeat has been sealed, his final destiny still awaits him. For now, Satan is active in the world. We are engaged in a struggle with him every day:
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. (Ephesians 6:12)
One of Satan's ploys is to accuse Christians. The Bible calls him the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night (Revelation 12:10). But his accusations have been rendered meaningless, because through Jesus' death, our sins have been forgiven. He also divides believers, and he tries to thwart the advancement of the gospel. (1)
Another of Satan's methods is temptation to sin. He tempted Jesus (2), but Jesus resisted, and so can we:
No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. (1 Corinthians 10:13)
God has given us weapons with which to resist Satan:
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. (Ephesians 6:13-17)
In addition, our very awareness of the devil's devices equips us to deal with his attacks:
We are not unaware of his schemes. (2 Corinthians 2:11)
God's power far outweighs Satan's power. Satan can do nothing outside of what God allows him to do. This is vividly depicted in Job 1:12 and 2:6, where God permits Satan to test Job's faithfulness. (The thought that God allowed Satan to cause Job hardship might be disconcerting to some, but the scene reminds us that God was in control all along, and Satan had to abide by the limits God set.)
Always remember:
Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world. (1 John 4:4)
So when the devil knocks on your door, just lift your voice and call out, "Jesus, would you get that for me?"
(1) 1 Thessalonians 2:18; (2) Luke 4:1-13

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