OceanSide church of Christ
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TEN THINGS ABOUT OUR ENEMY (1)
Victor M. Eskew
A. The enemy of the Christian is the devil.
1. I Peter 5:8
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.
2. The name “Satan” carries the definition: “opponent, adversary, and enemy.”
B. When one goes against his enemy, it is essential for him to have an understanding of the opponent.
1. In the movie, “A League of Their Own,” Dottie knew the weaknesses of her sister, Kit. She told the catcher: “High fast balls. She can’t hit them; can’t lay off them.”
2. Football teams know their opponents. Offences, defenses, key players, etc.
3. The United States military knows the enemy when it enters into a conflict.
C. We, too, need to know our enemy well. Let’s look at some of the things we need to know.
I. OUR ENEMY IS EVIL
A. Three times the devil is referred to as “the wicked one” (Matt. 13:19; I John 2:13-14; 3:12).
When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth is not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart…
B. Dictionary.com gives the following definition of evil.
1. Morally wrong, bad
2. Harmful, injurious
3. Characterized and accompanied by misfortune for suffering
4. Bad conduct or character
5. Marked by anger and irritability
C. Jesus summarizes Satan well in John 8:44.
Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
D. It is hard for us to comprehend just how evil Satan really is.
1. Vlad Dracula, the prince of Wallachia
2. Joseph Stalin, the dictator of the Soviet Union
3. Adolf Hitler, the Chancellor of Germany
II. OUR EMEMY IS MILITANT
A. Definition: vigorously active and extremely aggressive
B. Several passages of Scripture reveal Satan’s militant nature.
1. Job 1:7
And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
2. Matthew 13:19
…then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart…
3. II Corinthians 2:11
Lest Satan should get advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
4. II Cor. 11:3
But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
5. I Peter 5:8
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about seeking whom he may devour.
C. It is difficult for us to imagine just how militant Satan is.
1. Violent crime
3. Sexual deviance
4. False religions
5. Division: nations, churches, families, and individuals
6. Daily temptations of all men
D. He is so aggressive that Paul exhorts us to “put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Eph. 6:11).
III. OUR ENEMY FIGHTS ON MANY FRONTS
A. We see Satan fighting on many fronts in the crucifixion of Jesus.
1. The envy of Jewish leaders (Mark 15:10)
2. The betrayal of Judas (John 13:2)
And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him.
3. The illegal trials of the Jews
4. The false witnesses willing to testify against Jesus
5. The unwillingness of the legal officials to execute justice
6. The denial of Peter (Luke 22:31)
And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat.
7. The brutality of the Roman soldiers
8. The mockery of the masses at the foot of the cross
9. The horrible means of execution: crucifixion
B. Satan still works on many fronts today.
1. The national front: abortion, homosexuality, sanctuary cities, etc.
2. The home front: abuse, divorce, adultery, vices, busy schedules
3. The church front: apathy, slothfulness, disregard for God’s Word, division, weak leadership
4. The personal front: constant temptation
IV. OUR ENEMY HAS AN END IN MIND
A. I Peter 5:8
…seeking whom he may devour.
a. Strong (2666): to drink down, that is, gulp entire
b. Thayer: swallow down, to devour, to swallow up, destroy
2. Robertson: “But the devil’s purpose is the ruin of men.”
B. The number of good men and women that Satan has brought to utter ruin is numberless.
1. Saul (I Sam. 15:23b)
Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.
2. King Agrippa (Acts 26:27-28)
King Agrippa, believest thou the prophets? I know that thou believest. Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.
3. Elders, preachers, and members have been brought to ruin by divorce, drugs, pornography, alcohol, covetousness, false teaching, etc.
V. THE ENEMY MUST NOT BE UNDERESTIMATED
1. “There is no greater danger than underestimating your opponent” (Lao Tzu).
2. “He who exercises no forethought but makes light of his opponents is sure to be captured by them” (Sun Tzu).
3. Title of a book: “Understanding the Enemy: The Mistake that Starts Wars”
B. The enemy knows exactly what it wants. The enemy knows how to get it. The enemy will patiently endure until the end is accomplished. They enemy will love you, meet with you, and fellowship you, if need be. They live by this rule: “All is fair in love and war.”
1. Most movements have agendas, whether they are written or unwritten.
2. All movements definitely have goals they desire to achieve.
3. LGBTQ goals
a. Universal acceptance of the gay lifestyle
b. Discredit all scriptures that condemn homosexuality
c. Muzzle preachers and the “Christian” media
d. Grant special privileges and rights
e. Overturning laws pertaining to pedophilia
f. Indoctrinate children and future generations through public education
g. Securing all the legal benefits of marriage
C. Two verses:
1. I Peter 5:8
Be sober, be vigilant…
2. I Thessalonians 5:6
Therefore let us not sleep as others do; but let us watch and be sober.
D. Remember, the enemy is evil and has an end in mind.
1. If we think they are not intent, we are wrong.
2. If we think they will tire, we are wrong.
3. If we think they are not strong, we are wrong.
4. If we think they are ignorant, we are wrong.
5. If we think they are unorganized, we are wrong.
6. If we think they do not see us as their enemy, we are wrong.
A. The Christian is at war with an enemy that is hard to imagine, much less truly understand and appreciate.
1. The bully at school
2. The sociopath who has no conscience
B. “Underestimating the enemy is the sure path to defeat” (Hos. 4:6)
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…