Scripture: 1 Peter 5:8-11
8Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. 10And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. 11To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Because the devil is on the prowl seeking to devour someone… be clear-headed and watchful. The devil is our adversary.
Resist the devil, remaining firm in our faith; others throughout the world in the family of Jesus are suffering too.
After our suffering, the God of all grace, who has called us to share in the same glory as the crucified and resurrected Jesus will “restore, confirm, strengthen and establish” us.
Peter continues in his theme of faithful perseverance in the Gospel faith even in the face of difficult, trials, and suffering. This time he recognizes that the devil, our adversary, seeks to make the most of these troubles. The devil sneaks around like a lion in order to devour his prey. There’s nothing like trouble, suffering and darkness, to kick up the temptation to quit believing God… and the devil seeks to make the most of the opportunity.
Peter gives a command and a commendation:
- The Word of God calls us to resist by remaining firm in our faith. Faith here is the revelation of the Gospel and God’s love for us in Christ Jesus. Faith here is also the active choice to continue believing and trusting God through our sufferings.
- Remember that we are not alone in our sufferings. Together with all those who suffer for their faithful obedience to Jesus we will experience God’s salvation. He will restore, confirm, strengthen and establish us.
So here’s the thing, when the pressure comes, when I’m worried about what others think of Jesus and His people and His ways (and of me), then I should be wise to the temptations that come to challenge my faith so it crumbles like a cookie in the mouth of the devil. No. Stand firm. Your resistance to the devil by exercising faith in Jesus taps into Jesus’ victory and glory.
Our Heavenly Father, may you have dominion always. You know how weak I am. Yet, I am asking for grace to boldly persist in trusting Jesus today. Protect us from the evil one and strengthen your church today by your Spirit that we might persist in faith, love and obedience to our Lord Jesus Christ. AMEN.