Whenever someone hears the word of the Kingdom, the evil one (Matthew 13:19), also called Satan (Mark 4:16) and the devil (Luke 8:12), attacks endeavoring to steal the word from the person. Without exception, everyone who hears is targeted. The parable of the sower that is recorded in the above verses also reveals that the attacks continue throughout life. We must learn to resist our personal adversary, or we will not endure to the end. The beginning of resisting is awareness.
One third of the angels joined forces with the devil, many of which still function as demons in the world. They desire to live in people causing much wickedness. These demons are also identified as unclean spirits and evil spirits with Satan as their ruler (Matthew 12:24). These evil forces have striking impact in the world affecting our character, behavior, and development. The Scriptures state the following about the devil:
John 14:30 − He is the “ruler of the world”
2 Corinthians 4:4 – He is “the god of this world”. The word “world” in John 14 is from the Greek word kosmos, correctly translated world. However, the word “world” in 2 Corinthians 4 comes from a different Greek word aion that means age. John declares Satan is the god of this world, while Corinthians states he is the god of this age.
Ephesians 2:2 − He is “the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.”
The word “devil” comes from the Greek word diabolos basically meaning one who falsely accuses, slanders, divides people without any reason. He is the accuser, the slanderer. Can you see his work in our world today? The devil’s proper name is Satan which from the Hebrew root means hostile towards, opposed, adversarial. Simply stated, Satan is our adversary.
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.
The following designations reveal the insidious, wicked ways he attacks us:
Revelation 12:9 – He is the deceiver. He deceives with lies and falsehoods.
John 8:44 – He is a murder, liar, and the father of lies. His first deception with Eve was based on lies.
1 Thessalonians 3:5 − He is the temper. He is able to insinuate evil thoughts and designs into our minds as he did with Judas - “the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot to betray him” (John 13:2).
Revelation 9:10 – He is the destroyer who attacks our bodies with sickness and disease and our minds with evil thoughts.
Revelation 12:7 – He is the accuser of the brethren.
This troubling information can be intimidating, even terrifying, and seemingly insurmountable. We are in a spiritual war with a vicious supernatural enemy that we cannot combat with our own limited abilities. The good news is we are not alone for we have a supernatural victor in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Colossians 2:15. When He [Jesus] had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.
Hebrews 2:14. Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself [Jesus] likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil,
Ephesians 1:21. He is far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.
1 Peter 3:22. Who [Jesus] is at the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, after angels and authorities and powers had been subjected to Him.
We do not have to be trampled underfoot because Jesus rescued us from this present evil age and the domain of darkness.
Galatians 1:4-5. who [Jesus] gave Himself for our sins so that He might rescue us from this present evil age [aion], according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forevermore. Amen.
Colossians 1:13. For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son,
Even though Jesus already defeated the evil one, his complete demise will not be realized until Jesus returns. Satan knows his destiny is the lake of fire; therefore, he desires to steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10) as many as possible until Jesus
Revelation 12:12. …Woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, knowing that he has only a short time."
We are directed to be on alert and put on the full armor of God.
1 Peter 5:8-9. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.
Ephesians 6:12-13. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.
Read the rest of Ephesians 6 to understand the full armor. Prayer is a vital part of our armor. The instruction Jesus provided about prayer emphasizes the importance in our warfare. We cannot contend without God’s daily help, so we pray.
“And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil [one].”