May 12, 2021 – Wednesday
1 Peter 5:8-9 NIV
8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.
Pastors and anyone who has been a Christian for some time, want new Christians to know that having left the world of the devil and having joined the world (greater world) of Jesus they will be attacked by the devil and his minions. Before he did not care how you lived, but as soon as you became a Christian, a follower of Christ, you became his enemy and the devil became your enemy. So, as verse eight above says, Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
What the devil wants to devour is not you literally, but your faith, your belief in what Jesus did for you on the cross. He wants you to reject the idea of grace, that Jesus paid the price for your sins on the cross and then arose three days later defeating death. He wants to trip you up anyway he can so you will walk away from your belief in Jesus as your Savior and Lord. He especially comes after you as a new believer, but he never stops watching, looking for some way to trip you up to get you to renounce your faith. We have seen this throughout the past two millennia up to our own time where great men of faith have fallen. Some so far as to reject Jesus.
Peter thus says, Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. Great advice. We need to recognize when the devil is tempting us and Resist him! With temptation all around us, we need to be standing firm in the faith with prayer, Bible reading/study, and fellowship with other believers. Additionally, whatever we are going through, we are to know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. This suffering, from the Greek pathema, doesn’t have to mean physical suffering, but it can. Strong’s defines it as something undergone, i.e. hardship or pain; subjectively, an emotion or influence. And it happens to fellow believers all over the world. It can be a deserved promotion given to someone undeserving or it can be much worse the loss of a loved one due to disease or persecution.
The number one thing to do when you find yourself under attack is to turn to God for as verse ten tells us, And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. It is He who gives us the strength to stand firm and steadfast with our fellow believers as we go through whatever it is we will have to go through. No matter what it is, we have the Holy Spirit always with us. The two verses preceding our verses for today also tell us how to be prepared as well, Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. After all, it He who sent His Son to pay the price for our sins so we might have a place in heaven. So, turn to Him, His love and mercy are without bounds. We are blessed to know Jesus as our Lord and Savior with the Holy Spirit indwelling in us as believers.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I depend upon You, for it is You alone that makes it possible for me to do whatever I am able to accomplish. And when I can no longer do it, I know I can turn to You and You will take care of me, either taking me home or making it possible to survive what I thought I could not survive. You make it possible for me to experience joy in this life as I look forward to the next. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.