Playing “nose tackle” in college suited my “appetite for action” to near perfection. Lining up against the Buckeyes of Ohio State, the Tigers of Auburn, the Arkansas Razorbacks, the Texas Tech Red Raiders and other formidable foes was thrilling to say the least. But standing over the football as the eleven best in college football approached the line of scrimmage like a band of ruthless gladiators dressed in “burnt orange” uniforms was down right awful. Thirty-eight straight victories and two national titles gave the Texas Longhorns the awe, fear and respect as the most dominating team in America. For three straight years they embarrassed me. Three lopsided victories. Three humiliating defeats. “Down set hut hut” might as well have been the whistle of a freight train roaring down the Astroturf. I hated their arrogance. I dreamt bad dreams about them. My pickup license plate even had an anti-U.T. slogan printed on it. But the more I fought them, the worse I performed on the field.
The only enemy I’ve ever fought that was more humiliating than the Longhorns was the one who “breaks the huddle” every day and comes after me with all out vengeance. His I.Q. is like six million and he knows every weak spot in my defensive formation. He has more offensive plays than the Dallas Cowboys and more shots on goal than a Russian Hockey team.
He hides in the internet behind the scantily clothed and misguided women who try to make a buck off of our straying basal instincts. He disguises himself in Victoria Secret underwear and Sports Illustrated swimsuit models’ lusty poses. He broadly beckons his prey from Hollywood’s screenplays on movie and T.V. screens throughout our land. His many degrees in psychology make our minds a playground as he drags up old failures and allures us into new and greater ones.
A close friend of mine, noted author and speaker, met this arch rival face to face when his admiration for a woman turned into an 18 month bout of lust. One day as this woman was walking away from him and into a room, his eyes followed after her and his mind imagined an intimate relationship. His fantasy came to a screeching halt when his mind played a trick on him. In a virtual dream, the woman stopped as she went through the doorway and in his imagination, she turned around and stared at him. A pair of slimy red hands extended from her shirt sleeves and long bloody fingers reached up and began to peel the skin down off of her forehead to expose a face inside her skin that was not her own. The face was that of Satan, sticking his tongue out and jeering at my friend.
The woman wasn’t Satan in any way. But the devil was using the woman as a front to ruin my friend’s marriage, his ministry and his life.
The man’s emotional affair ended in a split second. Recognizing the devil jolted
him into sanity, and sent his heart running home like a lost puppy dog; who had just caught a glimpse of a home he’d been missing for years.
If Hell is everything Satan deserves and heaven is everything Jesus deserves, imagine the gratitude, the amazement, the awe, the fear, the respect, and the life-changing thrill it is to run from the enemy and run to the cross. To run to the heart of the One who bought your freedom and your ticket from eternal darkness to eternal paradise.
Understanding God’s Adversary
Mark these Key Words: Satan
Old Testament Viewpoint
Ezekiel 28:14-15; Isaiah 14:12-14;
Ezekiel 28:14-15 You were the anointed cherub who covers, and I placed you there. You were on the holy mountain of God; You walked in the midst of the stones of fire. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created until unrighteousness was found in you.
Isaiah 14:12-14 How you have fallen from heaven, O star of the morning, son of the dawn! You have been cut down to the earth, You who have weakened the nations! But you said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God, and I will sit on the mount of assembly in the recesses of the north. I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.
New Testament Viewpoint
I Timothy 4:1 ; 1 Peter 5:8; John 10:10; Revelation 20:10
I Timothy 4:1 But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons.
1 Peter 5:8 Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
John 10:10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.
Revelation 20:10 And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
What is God saying?
1) Describe Satan’s early days before his fall.
2) What was Satan’s original downfall?
3) What metaphors are used for Satan?
4) What other actual names does Scripture use for Satan?
5) How does Satan work on believers? What is his goal for you and me?
6) What is Satan’s ultimate destiny?
7) How can you avoid that destiny?
What else of significance do you see God saying in this passage?
How does this passage relate to me today? What changes does it bring to my life?
What is your greatest battle with Satan? How are you doing in that battle?
Memory Verse: 1 Peter 5:8
Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
A Adoration: Father, today I praise You for…
C Confession: Father, please forgive me for…
T Thanksgiving: Father, today I’m thankful for…
S Supplication: Father, the people & things that I wish to pray for today are…