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Learn to know the enemy and how he operates
Minister Riley Nelson, Richmond Hill Church of Christ

Peter wrote, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world” (1 Peter 5:8, 9).

While those in the world may not care about this warning, the child of God should treat it seriously. Satan is trying to take the mind of man from God.

The attacks made by Satan come many times when not expected. He knows the times when a person is weak and vulnerable.

The only way for a person to be successful in avoiding the snares of Satan is to be watchful for his advances. This means during times of stress and times of relaxation.

People can never let their guard down when it comes to Satan.

Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden when Satan attacked. God had prepared a beautiful place for man to live. He had provided all man needed, and then Satan came and destroyed the tranquility of the garden.

How could such an evil being persuade man to sin? His talk with Eve led to her sinning against God and being a stumbling block to Adam. Satan appealed to her just as he appeals to man today — with the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye and the pride of life. Man must always be aware of the “roaring lion,” lest he be devoured.

Today, Satan dulls man’s senses to moral wrongs by the use of television and movies. The works of the flesh (Gal. 5:19ff) seem to make up the biggest part of the scripts of most shows today. Moral issues of the day are clouded in the minds of some, but God’s word tells man what is right and what is wrong.

The Internet, while a useful tool for good, can also be used as a snare of Satan.

Parents must be aware of what their children are surfing on the Web.

Christian adults need to be aware lest they also are overcome by the lust of the flesh. Many have been overcome by the plague of pornography while doing harmless searches that led to addictions.

In every life, there come times of weariness. It might be during periods of great trials when our faith begins to weaken. Satan will be there at those times (James 1:2 -12). Just as Jesus used Scripture to overcome Satan when He was tempted, so should man. God’s word can serve as a barrier against sin, but one must know what the word says. That means that the word must be studied and followed.

Peter gave the following advice to all Christians, “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you” (1 Peter 5:7).

Christians sometimes begin to feel that they are alone. This is another of the devil’s ploys to try to overcome man. In the Old Testament the account of Elijah serves to show that there are others who have not given in to Satan. “Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him” (1 Kings 19:18). Christians are not alone. Faithful Christians stand ready to help “bare one another’s burdens” (Gal. 6:2).

One must work to never give in to Satan. Be a faithful student of God’s word, be obedient to that word and live for God each day.

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