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September 10, 2019, 5:50 AM

Our Adversary and Our Defense


This week marks 18 years since the 9/11 attacks.  While each personal reaction was probably somewhat unique, chances are that most of us of age at the time remember where we were when it happened and maybe a special prayer service.  Shocked by the brutality and evil on what seemed like a very normal, quiet morning, the victims were unsuspecting, blind to the risks, unprepared and virtually powerless.  Realizing that such a brutal, remorseless enemy had been among us seemed sobering and made everyone draw a little closer to encourage, support, and unite.

Leaving the physical and geo-political world aside, in a spiritual sense, we don’t have to be surprised or taken by the enemy of our soul; we are both warned of the adversary and enemy (the devil) and have a Heavenly Father that will faithfully guide us to home in heaven, if we’ll be faithful.

1st Peter 5:6-9 identifies both our friend and our foe when it states, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist stedfast in the faith.”  This spiritual (not physical) enemy is formidable and able to take every one of us, except we also have a strong defense when the Holy Spirit rules our hearts and lives. 

As an Old Testament allegory, Jehoshaphat was once defenseless.  From II Chronicles 20, “O our God, wilt thou not judge them? for we have no might against this great company that cometh against us; neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon thee.  And all Judah stood before the LORD, with their little ones, their wives, and their children. Then upon Jahaziel …. came the Spirit of the LORD in the midst of the congregation.  And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the LORD unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God's.  ….. Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them: for the LORD will be with you.”

James 4:7-10 says, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.  Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.”

Isaiah 59:9 states, “when the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.”  In Romans 8:32 we read, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?

2nd Peter 1:4-10 reminds us, “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.  And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.  For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.  Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall.”

We can have a “Victory in Jesus”!!

Bro. David Cosby


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