James 4:7 (NIV)
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
The first six verses of this chapter have been showing us how we fail and why we fail… and then we come to a list of 10 very short commands that direct us in the way of righteousness. It conjures up images of a General addressing his troops and giving them their marching orders… so we better pay attention! Here are two:
Command #1: Submit yourself to God. Give Him full command of your life. The puritan Richard Baxter captured it well when he prayed, “Lord, what thou wilt, where thou wilt, and when thou wilt.” In other words, we need to know what He says and then do what He says. God is not your “co-pilot.” He is your King.
Command #2: Resist the devil. The call to resist implies that he is on the attack. And what gets you on Satan’s radar screen? Your submission to God. Your obedience to God is one of the greatest threats to the devil, and so he attacks. Don’t ignore it. Don’t write it off in your arrogance. Resist it! Push back with the spiritual armor found in Ephesians 6 and your enemy will flee.
You’re a soldier in the Lord’s army, Private. Act like it.
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