Know Your Enemy

To live a legacy worthy of a true follower of Christ, we must know who Christ is.  That is a given.  The more we study Christ, the more we become like Him.  If spiritual warfare were a game, this would be our offensive game plan.  We are to attack with scripture, our sword, sending Satan running for cover.  It is all well and good to be prepared to strike out at the enemy; however, that is only one side of the game plan.  We must also think defense.  Putting our guard up.  Protecting ourselves and even anticipating what might be coming at us.  If the Christian soldier can get into the mind of the enemy, Satan, before he strikes, Satan’s attempts to derail us will be all but futile.

Have you ever taken time to analyze him?  How has he affected your life?  What have you learned from his attacks on you?  I get an icy chill through my veins when I try to truly understand the way Satan works, but look at it this way … knowing Satan means being able to fend off his attacks before it gets too messy.  So, how do we get to know this guy?  We start with the Bible.  The lower story as my church calls it.  Once we know our lower story, the connection to today’s life, the upper story, should fall into place.  Three Biblical stories come to mind when I analyze Satan’s character.  Let’s see what they have to say about this worthy adversary.

The story of Job: Job had it all.  A great family.  Great job.  Great relationship with God.  Everything was smooth sailing for him until out of nowhere, like a ravenous bird attacking a carcass, Satan turned his world upside down.  His livestock, his family, his health … everything was ripped away.  Decimated.  Though Job remained firmly rooted in his faith at first, he soon fell into sorrow, cursing the day he was born (Job 3: 11).

Ever been there before?  You think life is smooth sailing, then all of a sudden your world is rocked.  What can we learn from this?  Satan attacks when all seems well, when we tend to have our guards down.  Keep that guard up!  Dig into God’s Word on a regular basis.  Keeping scripture in our hearts will assist us in fending off those attacks when they come, and believe me, they will come!  Don’t be blindsided.  Anticipate, counter with scripture, and destroy the enemy.

The story of the temptation of Christ: Jesus had just fasted for 40 days.  Can you wrap your mind around that?  40 days!  Satan knew Jesus was physically weak, so he went in for the haymaker punch that would end it all.  Not once, not twice, but three times Satan came at Christ.  How did Christ respond?  With God’s Word.  It burned Satan like none other!  He even tried twisting scripture to make Jesus jump off the pinnacle of the temple, letting angels catch him.  Christ fired right back with God’s truth!  After the third attempt went awry, Jesus screams out for Satan to leave, and like a defeated child, Satan left.

What can we learn here?  Number one, Satan not only attacks when we least expect it—he attacks when we are weak too.  Christians must constantly be on guard, anticipating attacks at any time.  Secondly, Satan likes to twist scripture, making us misinterpret it.  To overcome this, get involved in Bible studies.  Talk to your pastor.  Read the Bible even more.  Finally, when Satan strikes, tell him to get behind you.  Yell at him!  This is passionately shown in the new movie War Room where Pricilla Shire takes it to Satan here: Tell him to get out in Jesus’ name!  If there is one thing Satan fears, it is the One who has already won.

The story of Revelation: Ah, yes.  The final say.  We already know that Christ has won if you look into John’s vision in Revelation.  This story is best told through the Bible itself.  “And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death” (Revelation 12:11).  Park on that one.  It is only through the blood of Christ that Satan was defeated.  The battle has already been won!  Take refuge in that thought.  Let that drive you through the temptations of life because in the end, Christ always has the final word.

You should be noticing a pattern here.  The answer to every attack of Satan comes through our defense: Christ Jesus.  He is not only our offense, slashing at Satan with God’s Word, but He is our defense as well, protecting us against Satan’s attacks.  And there is nothing that will prepare us for battle better than putting on the full armor of God.  “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” (Ephesians 6: 13). Submit to Him, and fight the good fight.  If Jesus fights every battle for you, it is impossible to lose.

(Let Unspoken’s “Good Fight” be your anthem in the battles you face.  Check out the lyric video below.)

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