In war, each side has a goal. The end goal might be to defeat the enemy army and force it to surrender. To reach that goal, an army will determine smaller objectives that need to happen, such as claiming a key territory or destroying a communication system.
Our enemy, the devil, has a goal: to pull you away from God. That’s it. Satan doesn’t really care about your marriage, your children, your friendships, your job, or your home. He wants you to suffer in those areas only insofar as your suffering leads to his ultimate purpose. His eye is on the prize: you!
Make no mistake about it. Our enemy wants to crush our spirit and extinguish our faith. He’s not the cause of every bad thing that happens. He’s not that powerful. But he does leverage bad things as mechanisms to deflate our faith.
When something bad happens, Satan introduces doubts into your mind.
Our adversary tries to persuade us to doubt our relationship with God:
- Maybe God is punishing me for a sin I committed.
- Maybe I’ve fallen out of His grace.
- This must be a sign that God is angry with me.
Our adversary distorts our thinking about ourselves:
- I’ll never recover from this blunder.
- I’m a failure.
- Everyone is disappointed in me.
The Bible teaches us, “Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8) He encircles us and waits for an opportune moment to pounce. When misfortune strikes, he piles on with his lies and tricks.
Satan may be a prowling lion, but he’s a mere housecat compared to our Defender. Revelation 5:5 says, “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered.” The Lion of Judah is Jesus. He has conquered.
Note the tense. He has conquered. Satan is already a defeated enemy. He knows his time is short. So he stirs up as much trouble as he can. He’s desperate.
But we don’t need to be desperate. The Lion of Judah is on our side. As the worship song declares:
Our God is the lion
The Lion of Judah
He’s roaring with power
And fighting our battles
And every knee will bow before Him
His truth stands up against the devil’s lies. When you’re tempted to believe that God has rejected you, reject the lie! When your self-perception is sinking, hold onto the hand of Jesus, who pulls you out of the pit and sets your feet on the solid ground of His truth.
We know who wins the war. The Lion of Judah has conquered! Through Him, our souls are safe.
This article builds on ideas contained in the introduction of Equipped: The Armor of God for Every Struggles. Click here for more about the book.