Know Your Enemy! – VII

May 20, 2013

I Peter 5:6-9

(All quotations are from the New King James Version)

One thing I have learned about our enemy is that he is an imitator, not an originator.  What I mean is he takes the things of God which are pure and perfect and copies them as, what you might call, a cheap imitation.  The problem is that cheap imitation has so infatuated most of humanity that they blindly pursue the imitation rather than discover the glorious real thing!  So most of the world follow the devil – all the way to hell!

I discovered another of Satan’s cheap imitations in I Peter 5:8 and 9:

    Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, walks about like a
    roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.  Resist him, steadfast in the faith,
    knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in
    the world.

How is this an imitation of what God has done?  In Genesis 49, the patriarch Jacob prophesied concerning his twelve sons, the progenitors of the twelve tribes of Israel.  Of Judah, he said in verse 9, “Judah is a lion’s whelp [cub, offspring]….”  Our Lord came from the tribe of Judah, and in Revelation 5:5 He is identified as “…the Lion of the tribe of Judah….

Can you see where I am going with this?  Jesus Christ is the true Lion of God – Satan is the false lion, a cheap imitation of the One who is “…the way, the truth, and the life.” (emphasis mine).  And what does this imitation lion do?  He “…walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.”  This is entirely in keeping with the descriptive characteristic applied to the thief – the devil – in John 10:10, “The thief does not come except…to kill…”; and John 8:44, “He was a murderer from the beginning….

Remember, Lucifer was created an angel – pure spirit – and spirits are not portrayed as needing rest or sleep.  So the devil spends all his time – 24/7 – seeking whom he may devour.  I have said before that we are not the primary targets that stand in the way of his destructive goal – to be God (Isaiah 14:14; II Thessalonians 2:4).  That primary target is shown in Revelation 12:4, where the great red dragon is seen standing before the woman (Israel), “…to devour her child [Jesus Christ] as soon as it was born.”  Satan did his worst in trying to destroy God’s Son, but, as it says in Revelation 12:5, “…her Child was caught up to God and to His throne.” – out of reach of the devil!  So whom does he seek now to devour?  Us – believers in and followers of the Lord Jesus Christ!  You see, if he can no longer touch the Son, he can hurt the Father by causing trouble for and harm to His other sons and daughters – you and me!

The evil one’s tireless quest to devour and destroy is seen in Job 1:7 and 2:2.  God asked Satan where he had been.  He answered, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.”  Matthew Henry puts forth the idea that the devil’s roaming involves no rest.  In Job, the ceaseless roaming is emphasized.  In I Peter, the purpose of the walking about is emphasized:  “… seeking whom he may devour.

And so Peter warns us, “Be sober, be vigilant….Resist him, steadfast in the faith…”  (I Peter 5:8, 9).  In other words, be clear-minded, be ever-watchful, resist the devil, cling steadfastly to the true faith!

In another few blogs we will examine in detail what some of these terms mean applied to our Spiritual battles.  In the meantime, continue to learn more in getting to Know Your Enemy!  And the Lord will help you better to resist him.

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