Guarding Yourself Against the Enemy
Today’s lesson I want us to study in The Word of God how we as believers can guard ourselves against the enticements of the enemy. By the help and Grace of God we can begin to learn how to hold fast and how to gain wisdom about the tricks and the ways that Satan and his workers of darkness come against us.
Handout: Guarding Yourself Against the Enemy
Lately in the lessons we have been studying different aspects of how Satan attacks and I want to continue because the Lord has pressed this greatly upon my heart. As children of The Most High, we have many promises from our Father that He will always honor. We have the blessings that He gives and we can live a joyous life. Through accepting Christ, The Son of God into our hearts, we inherit eternal life. All the good things that God has, He gives to us. However, we also have an adversary, the devil and he is a sly fox. We have done lessons in the past that warns us against some of his tactics. A lot of times he causes bad things to happen that we recognize as bad things. However, there are times when he comes against us with things that are very appealing to our fleshly natures and it doesn’t seem so bad until after we are entrapped, then our eyes are opened to the horror and the havoc it causes in our lives. Yes Dear one, let us not be ignorant. Satan has MANY ways to entice a believer and he can come at us with things and with ways we never even expected.
Many times when people talk about how Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, people come down really hard on Eve and talk of her as if she was pure evil. Let me say it now, she was human just as we are human and Satan deceived her, he enticed her with the fruit and made it seem so appealing and she in her weakness she gave in to his devices. Like Eve, you and I are no match for the devil’s tricks on our own. We must study and know God’s word so that we can have the tools we need to resist those temptations and enticements and so that we can recognize them as what they really are, as soon as the first thoughts of them are placed in our mind.
Psalm 119:11 “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.”
We can all learn a very valuable lesson from Miss Eve and the horror she must have felt after she had eaten and given to her husband to eat of the fruit. Let us go now to God’s word and see what we can do to protect ourselves against this happening in our lives so that we can obey God and continue to walk in the Spirit.
Galatians 5:16 “This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
You’ve seen that verse many times in the lessons that God has given me. Please do not be bothered by this. God presses these things on my heart often because He understands that we as human beings learn through repetition. I want every believer to get His word embedded into our hearts so that we know them and not only know them, but that we live them. I want them to become a lifestyle for us. This is the only way to live a victorious life in Christ. Come with me now to 1 Thessalonians 5 in which we will be studying for this lesson today.
1 Thessalonians 5:16 “Rejoice evermore. 17Pray without ceasing. 18In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. 19Quench not the Spirit. 20Despise not prophesyings. 21Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. 22Abstain from all appearance of evil. 23And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24Faithful is He that calleth you, who also will do it. 25Brethren, pray for us.
These verses hold the key things to help us to guard ourselves against the enticements of Satan. Let us now break each verse down one by one so that we can understand how to use this wisdom in our lives.
Key 1. Rejoice Evermore.
In other words Be Happy and rejoice in the Lord! A lot of times people today sadly believe that we have to wait till we get to Heaven before we can be happy in the things of God. That is not the case! We can live life in the joy of the Lord while we are here even in the midst of the things that seem hard or painful. There is joy and happiness in serving the Lord.
Psalm 16:11 “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”
Psalm 32:11 “Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.”
Psalm 35:27 “Let them shout for joy, and be glad, that favour my righteous cause: yea, let them say continually, Let the LORD be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant.
If you don’t really quit understand how to be happy, Seek the Lord, and also please read the lesson plan for last week called The Pursuit of Happiness. Children of God, our souls were created to be joyful, and if we do not joy in the Lord, our flesh will yearn and will try to find joy in other things and believe me, Satan will be right there to happily offer things to us that seem to bring happiness but in the end, destruction and death. Yes! Be joyful in the Lord all the days of your life, our Father loves us and has provided all things that we need to be happy! Thank You Lord!
Key 2. Pray Without Ceasing.
This is very important. Prayer is one of the main tools and weapons in which we fight the enemy because we cannot protect ourselves. We need the Holy Spirit to fight for us. Some don’t understand how they can possibly pray without ceasing. I remember as a young girl when my dad read this verse to me, before he explained it, I was thinking, how in the world can I pray without ceasing? I have to go to school and I have things I have to do at home, how can I just pray all the time? I came to learn over the years of relationship with God what my Dad explained to me and that is, that it isn’t difficult at all to pray continuously, it is a joy and privilege.
To pray without ceasing is simply to have open communication with God at all times. Unceasing prayer is simply seeing and understanding that He is ever present. Let me explain. If you are in your place of dwelling and your spouse or someone is there with you. You may not be continually talking to them, but you are aware that they are there. All throughout the day you and that person communicate and interact in some way. It’s the same with the Lord. He is always with us. Even if we can’t see Him! That is wonderful isn’t it. Throughout our days, we should be aware that He is right with us and we should be communicating with Him. We should be seeking His counsel about all things big and small. We should be talking with Him in our hearts in our thoughts giving Him praise, and thanking Him. We should be including Him in EVERY SINGLE AREA of our lives. Even the things that we are ashamed of or the things we don’t like about ourselves. God can help us with those things only when we give them to Him. He knows them anyway. Believer, be aware of His presence in your life at all times and you will find that this will help you in your daily walk with Him. It is comforting to know that He is always with us and will never leave! Praise His Holy Name! Thank You Jesus!
Hebrew 13:5 “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
Jesus said in Matthew 28:20 I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
Key 3. Be Thankful Giving Thanks.
As children of God we should live lives of active gratitude. Dissatisfaction is a pitfall that makes us wide open to an enticement of evil. Our souls need satisfaction. Constant ongoing feelings of dissatisfaction is a warning that something is missing, it’s a red flag that something is wrong. Of course there will be times when our flesh will act up and we will at times be dissatisfied but then the Holy Spirit comes and we see that we are being unthankful and then reminds of the many blessings that He bestows upon us. In this instance, I’m writing to you about those dissatisfied feelings that happen day after day after day. In many societies today, we are bombarded with thoughts in our minds due to the suggestion of others, and if we are not careful and aware those suggestions can cause us to feel dissatisfied. Think about it. Many companies spend millions of dollars for advertisements through television, radio, and newspapers trying to get us to think we need more material things. Sometimes if we are not careful our feelings will trick us into thinking we are less satisfied than we really are. We have to stop again and count our blessings and know that God is supplying our need and if there is something we want, we can go to Him about this in prayer and if it is His will, He will supply it. Material things, no matter how much or how little we have do not bring true soul satisfaction. God is the only source for that. We need to understand that and actively be thankful for the things He has blessed us with. We also need to show thanks to others for the things they do, that make our lives better. These are all gifts from the Lord. Be ye thankful.
Colossians 3:15 “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.”
Key 4. Quench Not The Spirit!
When a child of God quenches the Holy Spirit, we put out that fire of the Spirit, that passion that is essential for us to stand against the enemy. To Quench means to douse, to extinguish, to put out, to smother or stifle. Hebrews 12:29 says for our God is a consuming fire. Many times the fire of the Lord is mentioned in His word. This passion of the Lord, His fire is what burns in our hearts and keeps us going. This is where the term used so often here in the South where I am from, “On fire for the Lord.” If we quench the fire and the will of the Holy Spirit for our lives, our flesh will be apt to seek that passion or fire elsewhere and will get burned! The fires of evil will destroy us, but the fire of the Spirit will give us life. The fire of God can consume us and not destroy! Think back about Moses when he saw the burning bush.
Exodus 3:2-4 “ And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. 3. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. 4. And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I.”
The fires of Satan always destroy. His fires consist of anger, lust, and rage and they all end in destruction. The fire of God is the only fire and passion that will guard us against the fires of destruction. There is an old saying that says you fight fire with fire. Some of you may be thinking, I would fight fire with a water hose, I say that jokingly. Yes natural fires we fight with water but in Spiritual fires we fight the fires of Satan with the Fire of the Holy Spirit! When we quench the Spirit in our lives we are filled with Him. When we are half filled, we are also half empty.
Ephesians 5:18 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.”
When we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we are walking as He leads and doing as He bids and when we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we are full and nothing else can get in. This will guard against Satan trying to fill us with his garbage. Yes, we must pray diligently that we are filled with the Spirit and that we do not quench Him. We must pray that His fire would burn hot within our souls and that the Lord would use us to ignite His fire in those around us.
I feel led to stop here but will continue this study next week if be God’s will. I urge you to study these keys and get in God’s word and apply them to your own lives so that you can stand strong against the attacks of Satan and walk in the victory of our Lord, Jesus Christ!
Dear Righteous Holy Father,
We come to You today thanking You for Your Love, Mercy, and Grace. Thank You Father for forgiving us when we sin and for helping us to want to do better. Father we thank You for the countless blessings in our lives and we ask that You remind us of those everyday and help us to dwell on the things we have in You so that we will live satisfied in You. You are so good Father and we know that it’s only in You that we find peace and joy. Father we ask today that You show Your favor to this ministry and help us to ever obey You. We ask that You help us to reach the whole world with the gospel of Your Son Jesus Christ. Lord we ask that You bless all those that come and read, and those that go and teach what they have learned of You. Father help us to discern what is good and what is evil when Satan comes at us trying to deceive. Help us to hide Your word in our hearts that we will not sin against You. Thank You LORD for dying for our sins so that we could be saved and have eternal life and have it abundantly. Help us to go forth this week and to serve You and serve others as You would have us to so that our joy may be full. Lord thank You for being everything that we will ever need or want. You are life and You are EVERYTHING. We love and adore You Father and We thank You for always being here and never leaving us. Bless Your children we ask and help us to please Your heart. In the lovely name of Jesus we pray and ask. Amen.
May 8, 2016