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Drawing Near to God – Part 2
1/7/2014

Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. James 4:7 (NKJV)

We’re looking at a 4-part devotional series titled, “Drawing Near to God.”  In Part 1 we looked at our first way, which is our complete submission to God and His will; to His Word as absolute authority, and to Jesus as the Lord of our life.   Let’s take a look at our second way to draw near to God.

2.     Resist the devil (James 4:7b)

This word, resist, used in James 4:7 comes from two Greek words: “stand” and “against.”  So, we need to “resist the devil” by standing against his schemes—we need to resist his lies within our every thought (Eph 6:13-14; 2 Cor. 10:3-5).

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (NKJV)

I think there are a couple of common mistakes made within the lives of Christian men and women that clearly hinder their walk with God.  The first problem is a lack of preparation for spiritual warfare—many believers fail to consistently prepare for the spiritual battles with the enemy by failing to place their protective armor on daily (Eph. 6:10-18). 

We need to remember, the battle is ongoing and will not stop until we see Christ face-to-face.  So it is imperative for us to identify the warfare from the enemy and then “resist” him.

The second common mistake within the lives of believers is their reluctance to stand firm.  The Apostle Paul told the believers in Ephesus, “…having done all, to stand - Stand therefore (Eph 6:13-14).  Standing firm simply means doing what we know to be right by God’s written word rather than doing what we feel like doing—it is resisting the devil.  God makes us a promise if we do this, and that is the devil will flee (James 4:7).

Satan and his emissaries are going to hang out and continue to attack and tempt us in the same areas we have been susceptible to in the past until we “stand fast.”  On the other hand, he will be sent packing by every believer who stands against his schemes by the authority of what Jesus did upon the cross.  We must understand, we can never stand in our own power, but in the power of the Holy Spirit who has been given to us as a Helper in all things (John 14:16; John 15:5). 

…‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’  Says the LORD of hosts. Zechariah 4:6 (NKJV)

I want to encourage you today, draw near to God by first submitting to Him in every area of your life, and then by resisting the devil’s tempting lies—those evil thoughts popping into your head.  Take the thoughts captive and throw them in the trash.  Use the power of God to fight the enemy of God. 

STUDY QUESTION: What does James 4:7 tell us to do?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you attempting to resist the enemy in your own power, only to find you are unable to resist? 

PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Let’s seek the power of the Holy Spirit when being tempted by Satan.  Let’s choose to submit to God’s will for every decision we make, and resist the devil.

LET’S PRAY: Father, thank You for sending the Holy Spirit as our helper.  Thank You for giving us the wisdom through Your Word to know how to be victorious in fighting temptations as well.  Help us to identify any thought that is not of You.  Fill us with Your Holy Spirit today Lord.  In Jesus’ precious name, amen…

Be blessed, Pastor Scott

 

 


Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000