Beware of Old Tricks

“We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.” (1)

Taken off Guard

Unexpected disturbances frustrate life. They can really throw us off guard. Life is going along at a steady pace, and all is well, then bam! Everything turns upside down, apparently for the worse. How can you stay positive? We live in a strange place where the devil rules with his cohorts and influences. Our antagonist has lots of crafty contrivances that can go unnoticed; all the while he seizes many opportunities. Perhaps this is why the Bible warns us not to give him opportunity. Certainly, it puts us at odds with Satan and the world. Could it be this enemy is behind the daily unwelcome intrusions? He is still up to his old tricks – look at some of the outward ways he can sway people and bamboozled life:

• A bothersome argument that becomes out of control.
• The unexpected intrusion that leaves you confused and shocked.
• An abrupt unreasonable demand.
• An outward attack of verbal words, cutting criticism, or condemnation intended to hurt.
• Communications that are misunderstood and left unresolved.
• Disrespect, leaving you powerless.

The list goes on and on!

Recognize when we are weak

I recall how susceptible I was to Satan’s attacks when my son died a violent death. My mind was bombarded with distractions that overwhelmed me. In my deepest distress, I was the most vulnerable to the adversary’s lies. He is the father of lies, who secretly whispers lies aiming to capitalize on our weaknesses that cause us to doubt and question the validity of God’s goodness. This enemy’s sinister designs are motivated to rob us of rest, peace and happiness. Truth overcomes darkness: the Lord is gracious and kind, loves us, and is for us.

Taking every thought captive

“We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we re taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. (2)

The lies the Prince of Darkness whispers are attacks of self-accusations…after all he is the accuser of the brethren, and his aim is to tear us down by discouraging us. Introspectively, under his assaults we can feel demoralized and disheartened. To safeguard our souls we need to keep alert to his tactics. “We should wear faith and love to protect us, and the hope of salvation should be our helmet.” (3) To guard our thoughts and minds. Watch and pray! Earnest prayer can destroy attacks from the enemy by tearing down any lofty thing that rises up against the authority of Christ. Aim to live a peaceful life by dwelling on good things that promote good and well-being. “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” (4) Receive Jesus into your very heart allowing Him to fill you with things that are commendable, holy, and pure. When we submit to His Kingship over our body, soul, and mind we are held by His sustaining grace that stabilized us.

Lord, I come and submit my life to You. I pray for wisdom and the ability to keep alert to Satan’s tactics. Help me be watchful so I would be wise to detect the enemy’s schemes. Amen

Footnotes:

1. 1 John 5:19 nas
2. 2 Corinthians 10:5 nas
3. 1 Thessalonians 5:7b esv
4. Philippians 4: 8 nas

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