BIBLE STUDY LESSON # 37...AUGUST, 08 , 2010
"Knowing Your Enemy Part 3 – Satan’s Kryptonite"
In the previous two lessons I have shown you some of the attributes of Satan as well as the various ways he attacks us. This week I want to focus on how we deal with Satan and his attacks.
I intentionally gave this week’s lesson a title to express the power we have over Satan. The title may make it seem that there is some secret formula, much like kryptonite, that we can use to defend ourselves against our attacks. The truth is, the formula is not a secret and not anything complicated or complex. It is actually very simple. God gives us specific directions for dealing with Satan and all we have to do is follow it.
If you are looking for something simple, you are on the right track. Some people want to make spiritual warfare seem mysterious, but it really shouldn’t be. Every Christian is equipped to deal with the enemy no matter if you have been saved one week or 50 years. At the same time, I will tell you that even though the methods are simple, they are not easy. It is only through a daily ongoing relationship with God through Jesus Christ that you will be able to put these principles in action. I do want you to realize that when you put these principles into action, it is more effective that kryptonite.
We deal with two kinds of attacks from Satan.
The first type of attack is completely out of our control and has nothing to do with anything we have done in our life. This is the type of attack the Job underwent. Dealing with these trials is really very simple. Whenever you are going through a trial, no matter how severe the first thing you need to do is to turn to God and seek his direction. Like I mentioned last week, when things go wrong we tend to point to God with a blaming finger, but most of us who have done this realize that it never gets us anywhere. We have to recognize God’s sovereignty and stop blaming Him for everything. He is the creator. We are only creatures that He created. We have no right whatsoever to question anything He does. Until you understand and accept that, you are going to struggle in your relationship.
The second thing we need is to do a personal inventory. Take a good long look at yourself and your relationship with God and try to determine if this attack may have been brought on by sin in your life or bad decisions. If so, you need to repent and forsake those things which are separating you from God. Once you have done that, once again I stress that you need to seek God for His direction.
The third thing that you need to do is to humble yourself and cry out to God.
"I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me."—Psalm 57:2.
Stop trying to fix everything yourself and let God have control. We have all heard the expression “Let go and let God”. If you can learn how to do this, then you will be able to withstand any attack that Satan throws your way.
Don't be discouraged, but rather be patient and wait on the Lord.
But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31 NKJV
But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. James 1:4 NKJV
When we grow weary it is easy to get discouraged. Even after Job lost virtually everything, there were more attacks to come. You have to be steadfast in your faith if you truly want to overcome the power of Satan in your lives.
Sin and Temptation
The second way Satan attacks us is to try to tempt us to follow him down a path, and once we do that, it becomes self destructive. I hear people all the time blaming Satan for everything in their lives, when really it is their actions that cause the problems. Let’s look at how Jesus reacted to Satan’s temptations.
Then Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, being tempted for forty days by the devil. And in those days He ate nothing, and afterward, when they had ended, He was hungry. And the devil said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread." But Jesus answered him, saying, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.' " Then the devil, taking Him up on a high mountain, showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
And the devil said to Him, "All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. "Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours." And Jesus answered and said to him, "Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, 'You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.' " Then he brought Him to Jerusalem, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down from here. "For it is written: 'He shall give His angels charge over you, To keep you,' "and, 'In their hands they shall bear you up, Lest you dash your foot against a stone.' " And Jesus answered and said to him, "It has been said, 'You shall not tempt the LORD your God.' " Now when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from Him until an opportune time. Luke 4:1-13 (NKJV)
Jesus answered Satan simply and consistently. When Satan tempted Him, He quoted scripture, and at one point commanded him to “Get behind me”, which is to say, get out of my way and stop hindering me. He did not stand there and call him names or blame him for everything. In fact he did not raise a single accusation against Satan. His word was a sufficient answer.
There are a couple of interesting things to note in this passage. Notice that Jesus was tempted and fasted for 40 days. The conversations that we see here occurred AFTER the initial 40 days. This is a good indication of the persistence of Satan. Even after 40 days of unsuccessfully tempting the Lord, he was still trying to lead him astray. Also notice that the last portion of the passage states that only after Satan had exhausted every means he had available did he leave. It also says that he “departed Him until an opportune time”.
Satan had every intention of coming back and trying again.Satan will not give up and we should not give up either. We must get up every day ready for anything he throws our way. There is never time to rest or be complacent, though I see people doing exactly that all the time. It is no wonder that Satan is gaining control of our nation while God’s people are sitting idly by.
Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. James 1:12-15 (NKJV)
We are tempted when drawn away by our own desires. Satan knows our desires and uses those against us whether it be money, sex, or power. Temptation is a fact of life. We must learn to endure temptation.
Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. James 4:7 (NKJV)
I would like to point out that it is impossible to resist the devil and endure temptation when we are hanging out with sin. We turn on the TV or the internet and we allow those images to enter our minds and that is the beginning of temptation. If you have desires that are contrary to God, then don’t entertain those desires.
One of the most misunderstood verses in the Bible is in Psalms 37.
Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart. Psalms 37:4 (NKJV)
People read this and think that God is going to fulfill all of their desires, when the verse does not say that at all. What it says is, if you delight yourself in the Lord, He will give you the appropriate desires. You heart will be filled with Godly desires, not fleshly ones. The key is to “Delight yourself in the Lord”. We do this by giving God our full attention. We need to turn over our hearts, our minds, our souls, and our physical bodies to God completely.
It is important for us to recognize that our daily battle against sin is never over. We fight the battle until the day we die. Daniel was more than 80 years old when he was put in the lion’s den, but he was still fighting the battle. If you are growing tired, then look to God for strength. If you are not tired, then you are not in the fight, plain and simple.
Taking On Satan
Many of us make the mistake of trying to stand toe to toe with Satan when the battle is not ours at all. I don’t have time to go into detail, but I will say this. Do not waste your time trying to fight with Satan. As I mentioned earlier, Jesus was not drawn into an argument with Satan and we should not be either. The power that Satan has comes from God. We don’t have to understand it, but we do have to accept it. When dealing with the enemy, look towards God, not towards Satan. This is just the opposite of what our flesh would have us to do, but it is the key to victory.
Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, "The Lord rebuke you!" Jude 1:9 (NKJV)
Michael the archangel certainly had the power to take on Satan, yet he left that between Satan and God. We need to do the same. All the power and tools have been given us to lead a victorious life. As I stated earlier, there is nothing complicated about it. It simply takes hard work and complete dedication to the Lord. I hope this has been helpful and more than anything I pray that each one of you who reads this will be willing to take up the daily battle in your lives and not give in to the power of Satan.
I will leave you with a passage from the book of Timothy.
But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. I urge you in the sight of God who gives life to all things, and before Christ Jesus who witnessed the good confession before Pontius Pilate, that you keep this commandment without spot, blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ's appearing, which He will manifest in His own time, He who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, dwelling in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see, to whom be honor and everlasting power. Amen. 1 Tim 6:11-16 (NKJV)
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