Resist The Devil

 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.  (1 Pet 5:8-9)

I haven’t been to the zoo in forever, but I have recently gotten to watch a new show that comes on TV called “Fatal Attractions”. I know it sounds like some crazy show, but it actually about people who have “exotic pets” that ultimately end up being attacked by them. It makes for a great reality series anyway. One of the most prominent animals on this show is the lion. I had no idea until I watched several times that ANYONE would even consider having a lion as a pet.  Lions are fierce, and in most cases untamable, they let out a roar that will stop anyone in their tracks in an instant. Nonetheless, there are people in this world who will entertain having a pet lion.

Peter describes the devil as walking about “like a roaring lion”, the idea behind this seems to be that the devil is not quiet or secret in the things he does, he is there in front of us all the time, and it is obvious. But Peter says to be “sober, be vigilant”. The word sober is usually thought of as the opposite of “drunkenness” but actually means to be “clear minded” or to “think clearly”, and be vigilant, or watchful, for the devil who walks about as a roaring lion, coincidently, seeking whom he may devour.

I have often wondered about this passage, In light of the word “roaring” concerning the devil. It is absolutely without question that none of us would ever go near a “roaring lion” but how many times have we been guilty of standing on the edge of right and wrong, and we were fully aware of it? The devil is not picky in whom he devours, the devil is constantly walking back and forth looking for faithful Christians to see what obstacles he can toss in their way in order for them to stumble. The devil is crafty, and the devil knows the weaknesses in the lives of Christian people.  But Peter also gives a remedy to the problem saying to “resist him” by being “steadfast in the faith”. Remember that “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom 10:17). Peter is giving the idea that resisting the devil involves our growing in faith, but finally he says to understand that “the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world” .

Know this, that no matter what struggles we may face, there are other Christians out there who battle with things very similar, or the same, and there are others out there who continue to be faithful to God in the midst of their struggles. Don’t listen to the devil roar, and continue to stay close by, Paul says that if we “resist the devil he will flee from you”. What a great privilege it is to serve a God who has given us the remedy to fight the battles we face.