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THE BOOK OF GOD'S PROMISES

Defeating The Devil

By J. Stephen Lang

CBN.com -- Can people in our day and age really believe in Satan, an actual devil? Why not? With so many people believing in reincarnation, astral projection, and other New Age beliefs, why not a devil? Unlike those other beliefs, belief in Satan is clearly taught in the Bible, in addition to being an article of faith for Christians for two thousand years.

Maybe we've outgrown the old pictures of the devil, with horns, a pitchfork, and a pointy tail. Fine. The Bible shows no concern about the devil's looks. The Bible is concerned with a spiritual being that acts in direct opposition to a loving, merciful God who wants people to lead full, rewarding lives.

"If I am casting out demons by the Spirit of God, then the Kingdom of God has arrived among you."

Matthew 12:28

When the seventy-two disciples returned, they joyfully reported to him, "Lord, even the demons obey us when we use your name!"

"Yes," he told them, "I saw Satan falling from heaven as a flash of lightning! And I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy, and you can walk among snakes and scorpions and crush them. Nothing will injure you. But don't rejoice just because evil spirits obey you; rejoice because your names are registered as citizens of heaven."

Luke 10:17-20

"You know what happened all through Judea, beginning in Galilee after John the Baptist began preaching. And no doubt you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the Devil, for God was with him."

Acts 10:37-38

When Jesus appeared to Paul on the Damascus road, he specifically mentioned tearing down the works of the devil:

"I am going to send you to the Gentiles, to open their eyes so they may turn from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God. Then they will receive forgiveness for their sins and be given a place among God's people, who are set apart by faith in me."

Acts 26:18

The apostle Paul, like Jesus, understood the incredible power of Satan. He understood even better that God was much stronger, and would ultimately triumph.

The Bible's classic passage about our safety from Satan is Paul's Letter to the Ephesians. It reminds us that, frail though we are, we have a divine "armor" to protect against the powers of darkness.

Put on all of God's armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies and tricks of the Devil. For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms.

Use every piece of God's armor to resist the enemy in the time of evil, so that after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that you will be fully prepared. In every battle you will need faith as your shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed at you by Satan. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.

Ephesians 6:11-17

Humble yourselves before God. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you. Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you.

James 4:7-8

Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the Devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour. Take a firm stand against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that Christians all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.

1 Peter 5:8-9

When people keep on sinning, it shows they belong to the Devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy these works of the Devil. Those who have been born into God's family do not sin, because God's life is in them. So they can't keep on sinning, because they have been born of God. So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the Devil. Anyone who does not obey God's commands and does not love other Christians does not belong to God.

1 John 3:8-10

The Book of God's Promises -- Copyright, 1999 by J. Stephen Lang. All rights reserved, used with permission.

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