“Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.”.
1 Peter 5:8-9 NLT
Watch out for your great enemy – The devil!
The word devil is used of Satan, the prince of demons. Matt 9:34, 12:24) and it is derived from the Greek word, daimonion and daimon meaning evil spirits and dalmonizomal, to have or be possessed by the devil.
The word demon is not found in the scripture but it means evil Spirit or devil. Satan is the prince of demons and there are many. Demons are disembodied spirits, more or less like shadows and do not seem to operate in the material world except through possession of men or animals. see the verse of Jesus and the swine.
Therefore, can a Christian be demon-possessed?
First, the word possessed means to take control of. So to say a Christian is a demon-possessed means a demon has inhabited the body and taken full control.
But what does the Bible say about this?
The moment we accepted Christ to be our Lord and personal Saviour, He came into our lives and His Spirit made our body home, therefore, we became new beings with the Spirit of Christ living in us.
The Spirit of Christ is light and according to this verse, 2Corithians 6:14, light and darkness cannot live together. Our body is the Temple of God, so how can the devil inhabit where God is already?
Now while a Christian cannot be possessed, but it is possible for a Christian to come under demonic attack/ influence. The word influence means to have an effect on something or someone.
How can this be?
For unbelievers and Christians, there is a limit to what Satan and his demons can do without the person’s cooperation however conscious or unconscious it may be. Satan attempts every possible medium in order to accomplish his purpose.
As Christians, there is a hedge over us so befors the devil can influence us, he looks for an entry point otherwise known as a broken hedge.
A broken edge simply means a broken fellowship with God. Rejection of the truth of God’s word.
Imagine you give your kids instruction to always keep the doors locked and one day, they go out to play and forget to lock the door. And while they were distracted, a thief comes into the house and steals valuables or a wild animal gains entry and harms anyone it comes in contact with. This is what happens when we allow distraction of life push us to let our guards down and lose focus from what is most important- Communion with the Father. We open a door.
And if communion with God is broken, we fall into the trap of feeding our weaknesses.
In the book of Galatians 5:19-21, we are given an example of these weaknesses.
“The cravings of the self-life are obvious: Sexual immorality, lustful thoughts, pornography, chasing after things instead of God, manipulating others, hatred of those who get in your way, senseless arguments, resentment when others are favoured, temper tantrums, angry quarrels, only thinking of yourself, being in love with your own opinions, being envious of the blessings of others, murder, uncontrolled addictions, wild parties, and all other similar behaviour.
Haven’t I already warned you that those who use their “freedom” for these things will not inherit the kingdom realm of God!”
Galatians 5:19-21 TPT
Demons gain entrance through the open door and use this vulnerable point as a foothold/legal ground to bite and afflict us.
The bite of the serpent can manifest through;
1. False enticement/ Temptation.
2. Condemnation/ Accusation
The serpent does not stop. He will keep trying to penetrate and always return to observe if there is an entry point for it to latch on its fangs. And just like a thief, he doesn’t come announced. he tries to sneak into our lives but if we are spiritually alert, the discernment alarms would go off.
Then, it becomes up to us to raise a standard against him. And we do this by abiding in Christ with continual meditation on the word. There is a constant struggle between good and bad in the hearts of men and It is a battle we must keep fighting. Apostle PAUL puts it succinctly here;
“If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall.’
1 Corinthians 10:12 NLT
The deceiver would try to lure you to accept his lies. He is not in control of your life but would want to make you believe he is.
We don’t pray to never experience temptations, that would be unbiblical, but we pray to stay alert always in order to recognize the signals. There is no room for lukewarmness. On the battlefield, to lose guard can be costly.
To stay alert means to be aware, not paranoid of the devices of the devil so we can resist it. Awareness helps us make quicker and informed decisions. Once we recognize, we can resist.
The good news is we are not powerless against the wiles of the evil one.
“Look, 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.”Luke 10:19 NLT
Jesus has won the war. On the cross, He overcame the devil but we need to stand fast in the liberty that had been purchased for us.
We resist through the power of the Holy Spirit that activates the word living in us.
The word is light and when applied, illuminates all the dark areas in our lives that the demons may try to lurk.
In every way Satan tried to tempt Jesus, Christ used the scripture to counter him.
For it is written,
Man shall not live by bread alone
Thou shall not tempt the Lord thy God.
Thou shall worship no other God.
Hence, when the devil tries to sow thoughts in your mind, feelings, contrary to the will of God for your life, rebuke him. Take up the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God, fight back and he will leave you alone.
Remain in an unbroken fellowship with God by the study of the word, meditate on it and pray to Him always. It is a great weapon against the forces of evil and to pierce holes in shadows.
We don’t need a special time or place to commune. Even while at your desk working, going about daily chores and engagements, you can speak to God in your heart. He hears our thoughts too. Ultimately, time in His presence fortifies us and reminds us of the power we have in Him over the darkness.
I rest with this,
“Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.”
Zechariah 4:6 KJV
You are loved💚💛💙