Many Christians struggle to find the balance between accepting that there is a real spiritual enemy operating in the world today and giving satan too much attention. The only thing worth discussing about the devil is how utterly defeated he is and how we have victory over him in Jesus’ name!
Is the devil real? Yes. Should you be afraid of him? NO!
Is the devil real?
When our kids were little, before the conveniences of handheld electronics, we were their entertainment on car rides! To pass the time, we used the standard variations of I-spy until we all became bored, and then Ashley created a new game. It was called Real or Fake? The object being to learn the difference between what was truth and what was make-believe. Eventually, the question arose, “Is the devil real or fake?”
After a moment of deep thought, our then four-year-old, Hannah, exploded with her newfound revelation: “The devil is real, but his weapons are fake!”
To this day that is still the most profound description that I have heard on the power of the enemy!
Like a Roaring Lion
Peter described satan in 1 Peter 5:8, saying “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (emphasis added). Notice that the devil parades around like a lion. He isn’t a lion. He just pretends to be.
Jesus is the Lion of Judah (Revelation 5:5). He is our King and protector. His roar is full of power and grace.
But the enemy is the accuser. He stalks around, pretending to be big and powerful and scary. He roars threats against us, stirring up fear wherever he goes. The devil also pretends to be God Himself. He whispers in our ear accusing us, flaunting our mistakes in our face, and acting like God is mad at us. He tells us we’re unworthy of the love of Christ.
What a liar!
The Toothless Cat
The devil is real, but Scripture is clear that he is defeated. Jesus disarmed satan’s power when he rose from the dead, and the truth is that he no longer has any power to operate in our lives as believers. When we trusted in Jesus, we changed Kingdoms and entered into all of the benefits of a New Covenant.
Jesus humiliated satan through His death, burial, and resurrection. Now you can laugh in the enemy’s face and say, “You think you can throw all that condemnation in my face? Jesus wiped that out on the cross!”
“And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.”
— Colossians 2:13-15
Qualified for Inheritance
“Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.”
— Colossians 1:12-14, emphasis added
Jesus has qualified us to receive every benefit of the New Covenant. Because of His perfect sacrifice, we can enjoy forgiveness, healing, prosperity, deliverance, peace, and protection. That is not to say that the enemy, the thief, won’t come looking to take them from us! In fact, the only reason a thief comes sniffing around is because you have something that he wants! If healing and prosperity were not ours, then he would not be after them.
Jesus warned us, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).
The only real weapon that loser has left is deception. If the thief can convince us out of what is already ours, he gains a foothold in our life. He roars his lies of sickness, lack, and anxiety, hoping you’ll believe him and hand over your inheritance. He has no rights anymore to operate in your life and no power to do so. So don’t let his lies deceive you!
Take Yourself off the Menu
Remember, “the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.”
The devil is nothing more than a wanna-be, toothless lion. Jesus stripped him of his power and made a public spectacle of him. He doesn’t even have the power to devour us. That’s why he’s seeking whom he may devour. He has to have our permission! Like a lazy bear looking for an easy picnic basket, he is wandering around waiting for an opportunity.
This is good news! It means that we don’t have to be afraid of the enemy because he has already been defeated! He is a loser, a failure, a miserable little worm who isn’t worthy of your attention.
The devil is real, but his lies and accusations are totally false. Refuse to be lion bait today, and take yourself off his menu!