As any good athletic coach knows, a good part of preparing for game day is done by reviewing the opponent’s past games and seeing how they attack and defend themselves. So it is in spiritual warfare; we are not to be ignorant of Satan’s wiles. You see, Satan is portrayed as a lion on the prowl. He doesn’t play fair; he doesn’t go “by the rules”. He’s slick, crafty, and continually appealing to our fleshly desires and designs.
I’ve concluded that at least a part of his effectiveness in our lives stems from the fact that we do not take the Word of God seriously. You see, Scripture reading and Scripture believing will make us wise. Oh of course we resist the “mortal” sins like adultery and such, but what happens to our logic when the Scriptures talk about forgiveness, debating, envy, wrath, strife, backbiting, whisperings, swellings, and tumults? Face it saints, as long as we do not take personal responsibility in these areas Satan will rip us to shreds personally and corporately because under no circumstances are any of these sins any more acceptable in God’s eyes than adultery would be. To steal, kill, and destroy is the devil’s “platform”, and when we sow to these fleshly areas the only harvest that we can receive is corruption. Beloved, may we be fully clothed that we may stand against, and not conform to, the devil’s wiles.
How we need to change, by God’s grace of course, our thinking, our speech, and our behavior. We must change because God’s Word does not! Did God say and really mean what He said about murmuring and complaining? Contentment? Keeping yourself pure? Of course He did, and for good reason – that it might go well for you.
God wants our lives to be full of His grace, mercy, peace, and tenderness. It’s not His will at all that we be troubled. How do we get off track? Sometimes we place our feelings or understanding above the written Word, and in doing so we grieve the Spirit of God whose activity in our lives is to keep us from those subtle, “acceptable” sins of the flesh.
Put out the fire of the flesh with the water of the Word and, believe me, you’ll experience a peace beyond your wildest dreams. You see, it’s the little foxes that spoil the vine.