“But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me.”
When it comes to following God and living a life that is pleasing to God, you can make your walk easier by being fully committed to God only. This is God’s intention, but even so, people can still fall short of this.
Satan, the devil, comes along and tells you stuff, stuff that makes you question God and stuff that makes you question your right-standing with Him. There is a saying, possibly coined by Hitler, that goes something like this: “If you tell a person a lie long enough, they will start to believe it.”
Well, Satan used this strategy far before any man came to earth. He didn’t have a place in Adam and Eve’s life, but he still came and spoke lies to them and brought them to a place where they questioned God’s authority. Soon, they gave in and believed the lie. At this point, they opened themselves up and let the enemy in.
Related: Who are you opening your door to?
If you find that you are trying to do everything right, but everything wrong keeps happening, it might be a good idea to go back through your metaphorical house and close all doors and windows to the enemy. God calls our body the Temple, and this Temple is where the Holy Spirit lives when we have Jesus in our heart. So, for the sake of this article, I am referring to your body as a house.
In this article, I want to make known to you, how the devil comes in and what you can do to send him out. I want you to understand how to get through your day in the safety of the Lord and not as a slave to the enemy, Satan.
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It is through sin that the devil comes into your life
Ephesians 4:27 ESV
“and, give no opportunity to the devil.”
If you knowingly, and in some cases, unknowingly, allow the devil to come into your life, he will mess up your house. In fact, he will destroy your house and leave it uninhabitable.
Of course, you likely have an idea when you are engaging in sin. In most cases, people know the big sins; lies, stealing, murder…
But what about the subtle sins; pride, envy, bitterness, and even to a degree, anger?
It is very easy to have these in your heart while not even seeing it yourself. But God sees it, and Satan also sees it. When it comes to living apart from sin, it’s important for you to understand how to identify sin and also to know the difference between sin and temptation.
The devil doesn’t make you sin, the devil only plants a seed, a thought. What you do with that seed determines what comes of it. If the devil puts a thought in your mind, for example; “Are you sure that your faith in Jesus is good enough?” and you dwell on that thought, it can lead to more issues. It can lead to you questioning whether you are saved, whether God loves you or not, and whether you are actually forgiven of your sins.
This can lead to further problems, including, falling away from your faith in Jesus. Now, if you hear that same question come into your mind, and you quickly reject it, you will be less likely to struggle with who you are in Christ and who He is in you, and you won’t be likely to backslide into sinful living.
When you understand how the devil operates, you will see him coming a mile away. If you search yourself and you find any strongholds the enemy has in you, you can break those by confessing them to God and turning away from them. However, if you don’t even bother to look for signs of the devil in your life, you run the risk of wicked roots forming deep within; roots that are hard to remove.
How do I know if I am sinning?
“Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.”
Sometimes it’s possible for you to live in sin and not even know it. Again, these would be less obvious sins, but whether small or large sins, God see’s sin as sin. This Scripture is the one I use to determine if something will be counted as sin in my life or not. Before I do something that I’m unsure of, I will quote this verse to myself.
When I am about to do something and I come to a point of debate about whether it’s right or wrong and whether I should or shouldn’t, I have learned to turn away from it or set it aside. In most cases, the Holy Spirit is prompting me that it isn’t right and that I need to turn from it.
If you are doing something or acting in some manner and you get a thought that it might not be right or good behavior according to God, just remember; Satan will never give you a thought that you are doing wrong or acting badly, nor will he ever prompt you to do something good. His goal is for you to sin and fall. If you do get a feeling that something is wrong and maybe sinful, or to do a good deed, you can be confident that this lines up with God’s character.
Even though it might seem like you are denying yourself in the moment, if you turn away from something that doesn’t quite feel right, you will at least not risk negative consequences. However, if you ignore the inner warnings, you may run right into a situation that is not only sinful, but that also has lasting effects in your life.
Satan will tempt you up front and condemn you after you sin. If you do something and then immediately feel bad for it, it is likely sin. God will convict you of your sins. This means, He will bring them to your attention and put it on your heart to confess them and repent from them. Satan, however, will condemn you for them. He will remind you of them and make you feel like you are no good.
Learning how to identify when you are being tempted is the best way to stay out of sinful living. It’s perfectly normal to not always know what is or isn’t sin, or when you’re being tempted. That is why God gave the Holy Spirit as your Helper. The more tuned into God you are, the easier you will hear Him speak to you through His Spirit in you.
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If Satan is attacking you, remember; Jesus already defeated him
1 John 3:8
“But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil.”
Satan works hard to make you believe that he is powerful. Let me enlighten you; if you have Jesus living inside of you, Satan is weak. However, if you do not accept God the Son, Jesus, then Satan is powerful to defeat you.
Apart from Jesus, you can’t stand against the devil. He has power and authority and dominion over those who are slaves to him. If you don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus, then you automatically are under the authority of Satan.
Jesus died on a cross for our sins and was resurrected three days later. This act of love was to make us right with God and to take back the power, authority, and dominion from Satan. Now, this only applies to those who faithfully accept Jesus and His work on the cross. If you accept Jesus, you receive His Spirit in you, as well as, His power and authority over the devil.
Then, when Satan comes to you, a child of God, you can send him away in the Name of Jesus. If you do have sin in your life, you can identify the spirit of the enemy within you and the sin, and you can cast that spirit off of you with the Name of Jesus. When you command the enemy to leave you, he must. But you must also be sure to be done with all known sin in your life, otherwise, he will remain.
If you are trapped in sin or addiction, turn to Jesus for power to break free
If you find that you are struggling with depression or anger or fear or stress, these are all characteristics of the devil. These will bring you down further as long as you feed them. The name of Jesus alone has the power to break these and to lift your spirit out of bondage, but your participation is necessary. If you are willing to open your bible and read the Word of God during an attack, instead of turning to drugs or alcohol, God is powerful to help you break free.
Mindsets, habits, and addictions run deep in us and it takes a supernatural force to break these. If you live in this world, you are in spiritual warfare. If you try to tackle the enemy alone, he will wreck you. So, if you try to break free from addictions, bad habits, and evil mindsets under your own power, your efforts and victories will be short-lived. But full surrender to Jesus and His authority is where you will find lasting power over these things.
The bible is the written Word of God. In most bibles, there is an index at the back of the book. If you are struggling with fear, go to the back and look up fear. Then, read the Scriptures that are provided. This might not be the perfect way to study the bible, but it is a great thing to do when the enemy is attacking you.
If you are about to turn to sin, or about to do something that will set you back in life, give God a chance. Open the bible and spend some time reading. Pray about what you are reading; ask God to open your eyes and ears to His Word and to show you what you need to see. God wants you to turn to Him and to live for Him. If you are willing, even when under heavy bondage or spiritual attack, He will accept you and work with you and help you. But you need to seek Him first.
I have lived in bondage to the devil for many years. I have been defeated by him and have lived depressed for a good portion of my life. I struggled with drugs and alcohol and many other harmful sins because I was defeated in spirit and had virtually given up. However, when I did turn to Jesus, He was faithful to help me.
I encourage you to take a close look at your life. Whether you are neck-deep in sinful living or are living for Jesus, it’s important to come to God in full surrender and ask Him to search you and show you if there is sin. God will show you. At this time, as thoughts of sinful acts come to mind, confess them and repent from them. Ask God to strengthen you and to keep you from these sins. Sometimes, you will be set free completely, and sometimes you will need to keep repeating this process.
For me, I have found that faith is a big factor in this. When I tried to quit smoking, but worried that I might smoke again, I surely did smoke again. When I finally brought the addiction to God and tried to quit again, but this time while believing that God has delivered me from it, I was truly delivered from it.
God has a great plan for every one of His children. The only way to reveal the plan He has for you is for you to turn from sin and make yourself available to the service of God. Make sure all doorways to the devil are closed. Each day, strive to avoid sinful living and try to use any known talents for growing God’s Kingdom. God will work with you and show you the way as you make yourself available. This is how you will experience the life God intended you to live; this is how you will have victory over the devil.
If you don’t have a relationship with Jesus, you can follow this link (Prayer for Salvation) to find out how. Also, if you need prayer for your life or your family, feel free to fill out a private prayer request in the provided prayer box in this article. My wife and I would love to pray for you.