Ephesians 6:10-12 – Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
Ephesians 6:10-20 is a truth found in Scripture that applies to all people, yet it is a truth that we oftentimes claim to believe that rarely influences our actions during the day. In John 10:10, Jesus explains that “the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” While Jesus came to give life, Satan is present to destroy. When you consider the reality of evil forces in this world, it is incredible to consider how nonchalant we tend to be about the presence of evil.
If you are living in opposition to God, you are not a threat to the enemy and he will continue to deceive you into thinking the life you are living is good and is how you are meant to live. If you are living in opposition to God, the enemy will do all he can to keep you comfortable. Realize that one of the top lines on his job description is to deceive. His desire is to deceive the nations and to convince all that God is not good or real. He deceived Adam and Eve in the very beginning and now, because of their sin, all people who are separate from Christ are dead in their sin. Satan’s strategy for you, if you are lost, is to convince you that you are NOT lost. It is to deceive you into thinking you were made for yourself, made for this world, made to please yourself. Even as you read this, you may doubt the existence of Satan in the first place.
Consider CS Lewis’ words: “There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by both errors, and hail a materialist or magician with the same delight.”
I recently saw an interview with a prominent Satanist in the United States. As you look in to this man’s eyes, you can see the evil in him. He is an example of having an “excessive and unhealthy interest” in Satan (obviously!). Interestingly, most Christians and non-Christians fall to the other side of the spectrum: To disbelieve his very existence.
As Christians, we claim to believe in the existence of the devil. Yet, are we living our theology? Are we living out the belief that Satan does exist and that he is against us? Paul reminds us in Ephesians 6 that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness. Therefore, we must live ready to be in a battle.
As you read this, you are in a battle. In fact, you may not have even made it this far. If you haven’t made it this far, it might be simply because your flesh’s attention span has won. Or it may be that there are influences pulling you away from thinking on these matters. As Christians, the more we acknowledge the work of our enemy, the more prone we will be to fight against him.
May we be a people that does not merely believe with our minds that we are in a battle, but that we believe in our hearts as well. May we be a people who put on the full armor of God, believing that “If God is for us, who can be against us?