2 Corinthians 2:11 – “…lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.” NKJV
Joshua 9:3-4a – “But when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and Ai, 4 they worked craftily, and went and pretended to be ambassadors.” NKJV
Without doubt God’s greatest desire for us that we be saved! He has no desire for mankind greater than full salvation and complete deliverance. He wants us to become what He has already declared us – Overcomers! Most have realized or will that this Christian walk is not a bed of roses and there are battles to be fought. Most have realized that a battle won is not a war won nor a battle lost is a war lost. As long as sin lasts and Satan is loosed from the pit there will be conflict. As long as we live in these fleshly bodies there will be temptation. However, it is important to remember no one sin can be regarded paramount nor can any sin be lightly regarded. Any attempt or temptation to compromise with the devil is to invite certain disaster and court sure destruction.
If we can hold it in our hearts and minds that there will be battles lost and times of retreat we can more readily maintain our hope. However, I firmly believe that if or when we lose a battle and are forced into a temporary retreat it is imperative that we find out the true cause of the set back. How? Through prayer! If we come before God in repentance and prayer He will open the curtain and allow us to look beyond the veil and see. Prayer will give us understanding but it takes more than prayer to regain or reclaim the lost ground. We do not render the devil totally defeated in a moment of victory for the process of deliverance is gradual and often slow.
The Law or Plan of God given to believers that brings peace, joy, happiness, life and health is not given for the purpose of admiration but obedience. We are in a spiritual war and that war pits God’s forces against the devil’s legions. The secret to winning any war lies in strategy. If you fail to plan you plan to fail. Joshua had planned the war against the inhabitants of Canaan carefully. He had taken his forces and driven a wedge westward from Jericho into the heart of the land dividing the forces of the enemy. He then quickly turned south and destroyed the forces there before coming back North to finish the job. He had a plan, God’s plan!
We face a problem in today’s world in our failure to apply God’s Divine Strategy to our daily lives. I have witnessed, too often, believers and churches develop a hold the fort mentality and in so doing offer little or no offensives. So it is legitimate to ask, how often do we apply God’s Divine Strategy to our daily action or planned war against our souls? Some live hit or miss and miss more than they hit resulting in being outmaneuvered by the enemy. Satan is not only a roaring lion he is a subtle serpent and the roar of the lion is far less dangerous than the hiss of the snake spiritually.
Joshua 9 is a classic example of the subtility, trickery and deception of the devil and exposes the gullibility of man, especially when he becomes overconfident through a few victories. Thank God our God is Sovereign, Omnipotent, Omniscient and Omnipresent. He overrules our mistakes and failures for His glory. In this passage and account we find a revelation of the wiliness of the devil and a lesson worthy of learning in today’s world. In this account we can learn things that will help us expose the devil and move into the victory possessing the place of promise in God our Canaan.
Due to time and space we will pause here and pick up next time and hopefully provide some valuable information and tools to use in our daily lives in defeating the devil daily. God bless you as you go through this wonderful day!