Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Victims or Victors?

As I read the words, they jumped right into my life. I can’t quote them directly and I wish I’d noted where I saw them. They were penned by Beth Moore, that much I know. She said something along the lines of this: 

“We needn’t succumb to the temptation of listening to the lies of the enemy.”

She didn’t say we don’t have to listen to the voice of the enemy. She said we needn’t crumble to the temptation of listening to his lies. Her honesty turned what I thought I knew right on its head. 

I’d thought of myself as a victim of the enemy, our accuser. As I heard his whispers, the accusations that he wields like a skilled warrior, my habit was to use defensive tactics that symbolically felt like cowering in a corner and covering my head until the pummeling was over.

What Beth suggested was profound: 

I choose to listen to his lies. 

I play an active role in the assault. 

I am not merely a victim without control, but I participate in the process.

When my mind fixes on his whispers, I am choosing to succumb to temptation. 

It’s as easy as succumbing to the temptation for chocolate. Or for some people an unbridled tongue, or a cigarette, or others a shot of whisky or a risquĂ© video. 

God’s lesson for me, delivered by my “friend” Beth (whom I’ve never met - just for the record), was confirmed by two precious sisters within the same week.

My friend and mentor, Doreen has advised for years to not believe the lies of the evil one. Doreen is quick and faithful to point my mind toward the truth of God’s character and His Word. She reminded me again during a prayer meeting that his lies are rampant and we must actively stay on guard.

My friend Deborah sat with me over breakfast and described an assault by the evil one that was eerily similar to one I’d recently experienced myself. She was driving, everything was fine, and the accusations came like a flood. They centered around regrets of parenting and incidents from nearly 20 years ago.  Deborah’s response was far different from my own and transformed Beth’s words from sound wisdom to realistic application.

Deborah said aloud, “That’s all you’ve got?  Well Christ has already redeemed that and I walk in victory and freedom!”  

Go, Deborah! That’s walking it out and choosing against temptation to listen. 

Through the power of God’s Word we can position ourselves as offensive warriors against the accuser. We go after him with the truth, with the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Fiery darts from the devil cannot penetrate our shield of faith. We are victors in Christ, not victims of the enemy!

Looking into God’s Word, we see that our role in spiritual warfare is active, not passive.  I pray for the Lord’s help and provision of rapid discernment. May He provide strength to resist the devil through the power of His mighty Name. 

Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. James 4:7 (NASB)

Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Ephesians 6:13 (NASB)  

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8 (ESV)

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)

When He arrived at the place, He said to them, "Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” Luke 22:40 (NASB)

Your Turn:

When have you felt overwhelmed by the lies of the enemy?

Do you tend to think of yourself more as a victim or a victor?

Leave your comments below or continue the conversation on Facebook or Twitter!

Be Strengthened today, by His Word,
Psalm 119:28


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