Grace to You Resources
Grace to You - Resource

We are studying the book of Ephesians these days. And it may seem like an abrupt transition from the celebration of Christmas to the passage we’re looking at, but this is the one that the Lord has laid before us this morning. It’s Ephesians 6, and we’re going to be looking at verses 10 through 13—more of an overview of that, as you will find out in a moment. Let me read these verses to you, Ephesians 6:10–13. This is where we find ourselves, in our ongoing study of this amazing epistle.

He wraps up the epistle, does Paul, by saying, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 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.”

Again, it might seem like a complete change in subjects from the celebration of the birth of Christ to talking about the strategies of the devil. But you can’t think about the birth of Christ without understanding that the devil did a mass execution of young male children at the very time of our Lord’s birth. The devil has always fought the purposes of God, and he expressed his hatred of God even in the massacre of those children under the edict of wicked men.

Wherever you may be in this story of the incarnation of Christ, you’re never going to be far from the devil. He was there at the beginning, he was there through the ministry of our Lord, and he was there at the end as well. He came for Jesus at the beginning, and he came for Him again at the end.

Our Lord understood the functions of the devil; He knew him well. He know him once as Lucifer, the anointed cherub, a heavenly and holy angel, and maybe actually the leader of heavenly worship. But he had forfeited that in his desire to usurp the place of God and been thrown out of heaven, along with all the other rebelling angels; and they became the forces of demons that do Satan’s bidding in the world. And we need to know about them, and that’s why Paul begins to wrap up this letter by saying, “Finally.” You need to understand how to resist the devil.

We’ve had an amazing time going through Ephesians. The opening three chapters describe the elements of our salvation, and we saw the glories of our salvation, being “blessed . . . with all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies in Christ.” We came into chapter 4, 5, and 6, and we moved from salvation to sanctification, and we’ve been looking at all that the Lord requires of us as we walk worthy of our salvation, as we walk in the light, as we walk in love, as we walk in truth, as we walk in unity and wisdom, as we walk in the Spirit, as we joyfully worship, as we humbly submit ourselves to one another. And we have been going through the very practical aspects of our relations in sanctification. We’ve talked about husbands and wives and parents and children, the most intimate of relationships. And last week we even talked about how we are to live in terms of our non-family relations, in relation to work.

And so we talked about salvation, we’ve talked about sanctification. But this epistle is not finished until we understand that if you are in Christ, if you belong to Him, if you are walking in a worthy manner, you are going to engage in an inevitable war. And this is so important for us to understand.

What Paul has to say about this really flows down through verse 18, and we’ll be looking at more of it next week. You can’t go naively into life, even as a Christian, without understanding what you are confronted by from the forces of hell. You do not want to be ignorant of Satan and Satan’s devices. You do not want to give Satan an opportunity; an opportunity to advance his purposes in your life is to breach the very essence of what it is to be a Christian, and that is to live to the honor and glory of Christ.

There’s a statement at verse 13 that I just would point you to as we look at the passage. What we’re going to say this morning has as its goal that you will be able to resist the devil in the evil day. We’re talking about having the power to resist the devil. Another way to say it is in verse 11: “That you will be able to stand firm.” At the end of verse 13, again: “Having done everything, to stand firm.” Again in verse 14: “Stand firm.”

This all assumes that you’re going to be under attack, and this attack is coming from Satan. Now let me broaden the scope of this picture for a moment and say this: A Christian life is difficult, it is challenging, and it is a battle on two fronts. One, internally. We fight on the inside because we still have remaining sin. We have not yet had the redemption of our bodies; we still, as Paul says in Romans 7, do things we don’t want to do, and fail to do things we desire to do. And he summed it up by saying, “Who will deliver me from the body of this death?”

There is an internal struggle, and it is waged around three impulses: the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—named specifically in 1 John 2. So we understand that internal struggle. We understand the struggle with temptation. We understand the words of James, that sin wants to find a place and conceive in us. Maybe initially in some rather innocuous or innocent form, but eventually it brings sin and ultimately can bring death.

So we all understand that. We understand the spiritual struggle of the flesh and the spirit. We’re not to walk in the flesh, we’re to walk in the Spirit. That is a struggle. And we understand the means to victory are the graces that the Lord has given us through His Word and His Spirit, and we can be victorious.

But I want to talk with what Paul is laying before us here—not about an internal attack but about an external attack. Internally we struggle because of the weakness of our flesh, the remaining sin. Even though we have been forgiven, even though we have been recreated, even though sin no longer has total dominion over us, it is still there. And if you think it’s not there, 1 John 1 says you’ve called God a liar, and the truth is not in you. So we all battle sin on the inside, and we know that.

But the war that Paul is talking about here is not internal, it is external. It is the assault from the devil, and I think it’s important to understand the pathology of this, and that’s what I’d like to share with you this morning.

Internally the flesh is where the struggle lies; externally it’s the devil, the devil, and he has schemes, and he is aided by “rulers” and “powers” and “world forces” and “spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.” That just means in the spiritual realm. “Heavenly places” is mentioned at least three times in Ephesians. The first time, it says that we have received “all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places.” That is to say, all spiritual blessings in the spiritual realm. The spiritual realm has holy angels, and it has heavenly blessings, but the spiritual realm also has unholy demons and unholy assaults. So we are the most blessed and the most attacked.

And Satan does his work through the world system. He can’t come inside a believer—and I’ll show you that. You don’t have to worry about the devil getting inside of you. You don’t have to worry about demons. There is no place in the New Testament where there is ever an effort to expose a demon in a believer—why? We’ll see that in a moment—because Satan operates outside of us. He operates inside nonbelievers. He operates inside of them because they have mutual desires.

In John 8, Jesus said to the leaders of Israel, He said, “You are of your father the devil, who is a liar and a murderer, and whose desires are the same as yours. You’re a child of the devil because you have the same affections, the same longings, the same desires.” But when you become a believer and a new creation, Satan no longer has that internal access, and that is very important for us to understand.

Nonetheless, we have to be vigilant because he is in the world. In 2 Corinthians chapter 2 and verse 11 it says that we have to be alert because we don’t want any advantage to be taken of us by Satan. And so we cannot be ignorant of his schemes. You don’t want to be ignorant about the plans and designs and methods of Satan. Even though they are external, they find our evil impulses at the crossroads of the lust of the flesh—the lust of the eyes and the pride of life—and can lead us to sin.

In fact, Peter in 1 Peter 5:8 says, “Be alert”—be vigilant. “Your adversary”—mark that—“your adversary”—he’s writing to believers—“your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” He’s stalking believers—not that he has access to them, but he stalks them through the system of the world in which we find ourselves.

Three times in the gospel of John, Satan is called the ruler of this world, three times—John 12, John 14, and John 16—“the ruler of this world.” It’s been common for me to hear people say in recent months, “Who’s running this country? Who is running this country?” I can tell you exactly who’s running this country: Satan is running this country. The devil is running this country, and he runs every other country and every other nation and every other kingdom in the world. He is “the ruler of this world.”

Back in Ephesians 2 he is called, in verse 2, “the prince of the power of the air . . . [who works] in the sons of disobedience.” Notice that. He works in the sons of disobedience through “the course of this world.” So mark that: He works in the sons of disobedience. Second Corinthians 4:4 says, for one thing, he blinds the minds of those who do not believe. He has internal access to his own children, the children of the devil.

So there is no escaping, for them, his impact. And since he is a liar and a murderer, according to John 8, we expect the world to be full of lies and death because that’s his ploy. Hebrews 2 says that he has “the power of death,” and by that power he has held men captive “all their lives.”

So there’s no possible way to escape him as long as we’re in this world. First John 5:19, “The whole world lies in the power of the evil one.” And by “world,” we’re simply talking about humanity with all of its ideologies and all of its institutions and all of its systems. It’s all under his control. That doesn’t mean that it’s all always blatantly evil, because Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. He is a deceiver; he is a deceiver, disguised as an angel of light.

He possesses the world systems. He leads them, he designs them, he creates their structures on a supernatural level using human agents, and he uses those agents and those systems to prowl and seek unsuspecting Christians to do damage to their lives—but not from the inside.

Maybe it’s summed up as well as anything in Revelation 12:17, where it says about the devil that he “[makes] war with . . . [those] who keep the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus.” He doesn’t have to make war with everybody else; he already owns them, they’re part of his enterprise. But he “[makes] war with . . . [those] who keep the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus.”

Satan, for most of his operation, will stay hidden below the surface, particularly in a religious and refined culture. He’s happy to work in a secretive way. But eventually as that culture gets more and more corrupted and more and more blatant in their transgressions, he doesn’t have to hide. So pretty soon he surfaces, as he is doing in our country now.

I read an article the other day that said it may well be that the first government-authorized religion in America will be Satanism. It’s finding its way into elementary schools, where there are Satan clubs. People have cultivated this fascination with death and with the devil and demons. It shows up in the media, it shows up in the movies, it shows up in the baser aspects of our culture.

The devil is a very inviting figure to this society, pulling him and his demon powers up from their clandestine place. But he is very limited. He is totally limited, in one sense, to only what God allows him to do, and he is only able, as far as believers go, to affect them from the outside. You can’t say the devil made you do something. You don’t ever need to think of somebody who’s a Christian being possessed by a demon; there is no such thing. You don’t have to bind demon spirits. You don’t have to speak to them as if they had access to a believer and you could dismiss them. And I want to show a verse that will help you with that—several in 1 John.

First John 4:4. John is talking here about the evil spirits, “the spirit of antichrist”—any evil spirit, any spirit that denies Christ. And in verse 4 he says, “You are from God, little children”—believers—“and have overcome them.” “You have already overcome them. You have already, in Christ, triumphed over them.”

In 1 John also, back in chapter 2, you have to look at verses 13 and 14. He says in the middle of verse 13, “I am writing to you, young men”—meaning young believers who are more than just children in the faith—“I am writing to you, young men, because you’ve overcome the evil one”—“You have already overcome the evil one.”

Verse 14, “I have written to you”—he says it another way—“young men, because you are strong, the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.” If you are a believer, and the Word of God abides in you—and it does in every believer—then “you have overcome the evil one.” He has no access to you internally. And that’s why it says in 1 John 4:4, “Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.” And that is a contrast. “He who is in you” is different than “he who is in the world.” “He who is in the world” is Satan; “He who is in you” is the Holy Spirit.

Back in chapter 2 of 1 John, three times John says you have an anointing from God, you have an anointing from God, verse 20, verse 27. You have an anointing from God, and that anointing is none other than the Holy Spirit. First Corinthians 6:19–20, you’re the temple of the Spirit of God. Christ lives in you, Romans 8:9: “If any man have not . . . Christ, he’s none of his.”

So you have living in you God Himself. The Father has made His abode with you, the Spirit dwells in you, and the Son also. So verse 4 says: “Greater is He who is in you”—who is God—“than he who is in the world”—who is the devil. It’s important that you understand that so that you don’t fall into the foolishness of thinking that you can be susceptible to demon-possession. And I’ll give you a great illustration of that very truth in John 14. It’s worth taking a moment to look at, John 14.

Our Lord is talking to the disciples; He’s anticipating the coming of His arrest and death, and He knows that Satan is involved in this. He even refers to it as the hour of darkness, as the darkness comes for him, meaning Satan. But I want you to look at verse 30 of John 14, very important: “I will not speak much more with you”—this is the last evening with His disciples before His arrest and crucifixion the next day. “I will not speak much more with you, for the ruler of the world is coming”—he’s on his way. Again, this is “the ruler of the world” who we know is Satan. And this is so important: “He has nothing in Me.” “He has nothing in Me.” Ou oudeis—that is a double negative; that is emphatic. “He has no access to Me. He has no power over Me, he has no authority over Me, he has no control over Me, he has no claim on Me, he has no access to Me. He has nothing, absolutely nothing”—that’s why it’s a double negative. “He has absolutely no access to Me.”

He does—has a realm, and let me show you that back in Luke 4. This is very important also. Satan is tempting our Lord; and of course Satan has no access to Him, so his temptations go nowhere. But in verse 5 Satan tries this particular temptation: “He led [Jesus] up and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.” That is some kind of supernatural moment. Christ is lifted out of the confines of His humanity, and the devil shows Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. “And the devil said to Him, ‘I will give You all this domain and its glory.’” “What makes you think you have that as your possession to give Me?” Answer: “For it has been handed over to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.”

You want to know why the world is the way it is? Because the devil is in charge of it. It was handed over to him by sovereign God. The devil is God’s devil, and he operates within the confines of God’s will; but he runs the world system. This is reason enough to understand that the world is a deadly, deceptive, and dangerous place. It isn’t just that nonbelievers will face the presence of Satan in an eternal hell; they’re under his power now, in their temporal life as well.

So the devil says, “I am the ruler of all the kingdoms of the world.” And again, I go back to what I said a moment ago. If you wonder who’s in charge, there’s your answer: He’s in charge. No amount of deception and no amount of killing should surprise anybody, no amount of evil. He has authority over the world, and he rules the kingdoms of the world. He also controls the people, the people who are outside the kingdom of God who are called the children of the devil both in the gospel of John and in the epistle of John, 1 John.

What about us as believers? Go back to 1 John 4, verse 4, “You’re from God, little children.” “You’re from God.” There’s a difference; there’s a distinction. There are two kinds of people in the world and only two, chapter 3 of 1 John, verse 10: “the children of God and the children of the devil”—and the difference is obvious—“the children of God and the children of the devil.” As “the children of God,” we have overcome the spirits that assault and deny Christ, we have overcome that spirit world, because “greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.”

Let me show you even further. Go over to chapter 5 of 1 John, verse 4, 1 John 5:4, “Whatever is born of God overcomes the world”—we have overcome Satan; we have overcome the world. “And this is the victory that has already overcome the world—our faith.

“Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” We have overcome the evil one. We have overcome the world. This is amazing truth.

Dropping down in chapter 5 to verse 18: “We know that no one who is born of God sins”—in the sense that the same pattern of unbroken sin is carried on—“but He who was born of God keep him”—that is Christ, who was born of God; we celebrated that this morning—“and the evil one does not touch him.” If you’re born of God as Christ was born of God, if you have received the new birth, Satan can’t lay his hands on you; he can’t take hold of you.

So what we’re talking about in terms of this kind of conflict in Ephesians is the reality that Satan cannot be in us because the Spirit of God is in us, and He alone dwells within the believer. But He influences us by the world. It’s not fatal because we have by our faith and the grace of salvation, overcome the world. We’ve entered into victory in Christ. So you don’t need to fear that Satan might take over your life, demons might come invade you; it’s not possible. You are a child a God; that cannot be altered for all eternity.

But here we are, living in the world. And if we go back to Ephesians at this point, we see Paul saying, “Look, it’s going to take some strength to resist this complex of evil in which we all live.” And that’s the essence of this portion of Scripture. We are those who belong to God. We’ve overcome the evil one so that he can’t touch us. We’ve overcome the world so that it can’t pull us in. We’ve become the temple of the Spirit of God, so demons have no internal access to us, neither does Satan.

So the question is, this passage poses, How do we resist? Because that’s the objective, right, to resist and stand, to resist and stand. There’s nothing about chasing demons. You don’t have apostolic power; you can’t go around casting out demons like Christ and the apostles could. You don’t want to be thinking you can send demons away, because there are times when the Lord uses demons for His own purposes, and only He knows the sovereignty of those purposes, such as Paul in 2 Corinthians 12 where he says, “I asked the Lord to remove a messenger from Satan who was really stabbing me in my flesh”—some demon powers that were tearing up the church at Corinth—“and I asked the Lord to get him out, and the Lord said, ‘No, because My strength is perfected in your weakness.’”

There are times when the Lord lets out the rope a little bit on Satan or demon forces to do damage around us—not in us, but around us. And you might think, “Well, we need to chase them all away.” Well, you might not want to be in a hurry to do that when you understand that in Paul’s case he was going to learn the greatest lesson you could ever learn, and that is the lesson of your own weakness by having to face the reality of that demon.

One day Satan came to Jesus, and he said, “I want to tackle Peter. I want to attack Peter.” And the Lord said, “Go for it.” This is what he said about Job. You remember Jesus said to Peter, “Satan desires to have you that he may sift you like wheat.” But He said, “I’m not going to fail you.” So you don’t want to be thinking you have some kind of sovereign knowledge of the kingdom of darkness and foolishly running around thinking you can express the same kind of power that Christ had over demons or the apostles had.

There were some people in the book of Acts who tried that. They were called the sons of Sceva, and they were trying to cast out demons from some individual, and the demons shouted back and said, “Jesus we know, and Paul we know. But who are you guys?”

You want to understand that it’s a marvelous reality to understand you have overcome the evil one. He can’t touch you; he functions outside. And you have also overcome the world in a final and full sense—sin doesn’t have dominion over you; Satan doesn’t have dominion over you; the world doesn’t have dominion over you. But its power and its influence can come at you at the point of the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life.

You say, “Well, how can I protect myself?” That’s exactly what this passage is going to talk about. This is how you resist and stand firm.

Obviously the world is dangerous. Chapter 2, “Don’t love the world or any of the things that are in the world. The world is passing away.” This world system is temporal. But you have to know the schemes of Satan, and he comes at you with the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, the pride of life basically designed into the fabric of the system in which you live.

If you’re trying to stand firm and resist, it’s not a good idea to look at pornography, it’s not a good idea to cultivate in your heart pride, lust of the eyes, greed, personal ambition, selfishness, sexual desires. Cultivating those things is the opposite of what you want to do because in that weakness of that moment you open the door of the lust of the eyes, with the lust of the heart, or the pride of life, and it leads to sin.

And James talks about that, doesn’t he? He says that sin starts in the heart. It’s cultivated there because we’ve allowed ourselves to be tempted. And that’s where the cultivation of sin begins, and it leads externally, eventually, to sin, and he goes on to say it even leads to death.

So that is the layout of the passage before us. Can I just give you a few points? First point I want to make is that the power in resisting is verse 10: “Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.”

The power of resisting isn’t us. “The weapons of our warfare are not fleshly,” 2 Corinthians 10. He has the power: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” “There’s no temptation taken [me] but such as is common to man: [and] God is faithful, who will not allow [me] to be tempted above what [I’m] able, but will with the temptation make a way of escape.”

Chapter 3 of Ephesians verse 20 says, “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us.” That’s the Holy Spirit working in us. The power is the Lord. You’re like a guard; if the enemy approaches, you don’t fight the battle, you go to the commander, tell the commander, and He’ll come out and fight that battle for you. This isn’t about flexing some spiritual muscles of your own; this is about turning to Christ for strength. That power that works in us is the very power that raised Christ from the dead.

So our strength is found in Him. I was thinking of Colossians 1, “Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work, increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness.” If you want to be steadfast, stand firm and resist. There’s the formula: “strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might.” It’s turning to the Lord, walking in submission, obedience to Him and to the Holy Spirit.

So this is a very challenging battle; we all understand that. But the formula for victory is laid out here, and we find our strength in the Lord. But there’s something more than that. We have to have the armor on as well. Not only do we have to find our strength in Him, but look at verse 11: “Put on the full armor of God,” because you’re not going to be able to stand firm against the methods of the devil unless you have the armor of God. Paul wrote this letter probably with Roman soldiers all around him, and he would look at the equipment of a Roman soldier and see how that could be wonderful imagery for understanding what it is to have God’s armor so that we can resist.

So the strength is in the Lord. You have to put the armor on. We’re going to say a lot about that next week when we go down to verses 14 to 17. We’ll talk about the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the feet—the shoes of the gospel of peace, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, sword of the Spirit; that’s all necessary.

So we have the preparation; that is to be strong in the Lord. We have the armor; we’ll lay that out in more detail. The third thing to think about here is the nature of the enemy. And that really takes you into verses 11 and 12. The end of verse 11 introduces “the schemes of the devil,” and then it further explains it: “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood.” It’s not a human battle. Humans are involved, but they’re just the pawns of the satanic force.

“But [rather, our struggle is] against the rulers . . . the powers . . . the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God,” because you’re fighting a spiritual battle that is far beyond the capability of any human strategy, far beyond.

It’s folly to think that you can stand against Satan without your armor, because the battle is supernatural. Look again at verses 11 and 12. Satan has schemes. You want to make sure you understand those schemes. Verse 12, the complex of Satan’s force is basically revealed as “rulers,” or “principalities”; “powers,” “world forces of this darkness,” and “spiritual power” or “spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenlies.” And this is really amazing insight. We’re fighting demon powers.

In other words, it’s not that we are in hand-to-hand combat with them, it is that trying to live a godly Christian life when you’re trying to navigate your way through a world—a complex world that is under the layers and layers and layers of demonic authority is difficult. The devil and Satan, according to Revelation 12:9, “deceives the whole world,” “the whole world,” and his deceptions are subtle and fearful. So we have to be alert.

By the way, those rulers, powers, world forces, spiritual forces are ranks of angels, levels of angelic operation. In chapter 1, they’re used to refer to holy angels, verse 21. Here they’re used to refer to fallen angels and demons. There is a hierarchy of angelic structure and organization for holy angels, and Satan has his own hierarchy of fallen angels, demons, ranked and stratified to accomplish his purposes in the world.

It’s a very ancient core of demons. They’ve all been around since creation. They’ve all been in the same condition since they fell. None of them have disappeared, except those who were cast into the pit. The rest of them are running loose. They operate Satan’s enterprises in the world system; and this is powerful, powerful spiritual force, which is Paul’s way of saying, “You don’t want to go out there like a naïve child because what you’re facing is very, very powerful.”

It’s a challenge to live in this world. Can you have victory? Well, that’s verse 13: If you “take up the full armor of God,” you’ll “be able to resist in the evil day”—what’s “the evil day”? Any day that’s evil—“and having done everything,” you’ll “stand.”

Victory is standing. Victory is standing; it’s being faithful, and it requires resisting. Notice there: “to resist, to resist.” This is the language of James. In James chapter 4 and verse 7, listen to what James says: “Resist the devil and he will”—what?—“flee from you.” You don’t have to chase him and send him anywhere. “Resist.” Resist.

Peter said the same thing. Listen to the words of Peter, 1 Peter 5:9. Verse 8 says, “Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. But resist him, firm in your faith”—talking about resistance. And really the only way to resist is to have on the armor. With that armor “you’ll be able,” says Ephesians 6, “to stand firm,” to stand firm.

So that leads us up to that most important subject of the armor of the believer, and we’ll look at that next time. Let’s bow in prayer.

Our Father, we thank You for the consistency of Your Word, for its clarity. Thank You for showing us not only glimpses of Your holy kingdom but even of the unholy kingdom. We rejoice that You have not left us ignorant about Satan’s devices. We should never be a victim of his methods. Lord, help us to understand his limitations—what he can never do. He cannot touch us. He cannot touch us any more than he could touch Christ. He had nothing in Him, and he has nothing in us because we are the temple of the Spirit of God. We are in Christ, and Christ is in us. But he comes at it from the avenue that he does have, and that’s in the world system. He sets himself up as our adversary, to hinder the work of the Spirit of God, to hinder Your work, Father, to hinder Your work, blessed Christ, and to devour and do damage to our usefulness and our spiritual impact.

So Lord, help us to stand firm, to resist the devil. Continue to direct us to understand what that means, even as we look at the armor of the Christian. But for now we know it starts with the breastplate of righteousness. As long as we’re walking in obedience to You, we are not giving the devil any opportunity. So Lord, keep us faithful, and may our focus always and only be on Christ. May all we do express love and devotion and obedience to Him.

We thank You for the victory that is already ours in Christ. We thank You that we have overcome Satan, the evil one; we have overcome the world, not because of anything we have done but because You have defeated Satan for us; and You have defeated the world for us, and it’s in that triumph that we live. There’s no reason for us to be seduced by the world. We have within us the Spirit of God and the truth of the Word of God that can establish us in ways that give us strength to resist Satan. That’s our desire: for Your glory and for the blessedness and the impact of Your church. We pray these things in our Savior’s name. Amen.

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