As Christians, we know the war has been won, but there are still battles to fight. We can be victims or victors in these battles, depending on our knowledge and understanding of what we are fighting. God knows the strategies the enemy uses, and He shows them to us in His Word, so that “we are not ignorant of his devices, lest satan should get an advantage” (2 Corinthians 2:11). In this passage, Paul says to forgive those who have grieved us, and comfort them, so that they won’t be swallowed up by sorrow. This implies that the enemy attacks us by reminding us of our sin and our unworthiness. If he has a strategy against us, we need a strategy against him. So what do we do when we are attacked?
STEP 1: Recognize him
The devil doesn’t know new tricks. His attacks are always the same. If you can begin to recognize them, you can stop them before they hit you. A favorite attack of his is to accuse us. Revelation 12:10 calls satan “the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them day and night before our God”. His tool is deception. In the Old Testament, he accused Job of not loving God, and only loving what had been provided for him. He came before God’s throne and said, “He doesn’t really love you.”
But he can no longer come before God and accuse you. If you continue reading Revelation 12:10, it says that he was hurled down when Christ’s mission was accomplished. Luke 10 says, “I saw satan fall like lightning from heaven.” He no longer has access to the throne.
So instead, he comes to us. He speaks to our conscience and makes us believe that our sin has separated us from God – “He doesn’t really love you.” It’s the same trick, but to a different audience. He tells you that God is against you, angry with you, or punishing you. He picks at your old scabs. He tells you that nobody could love you, much less a perfect God. When you begin to believe that God is against you, recognize that as an attack.
STEP 2: Resist him
James says, “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). How do we resist him? Again, God provides the answer for us. In the wilderness, Jesus resisted him by using scripture. Jesus responded to temptation with the words, “It is written.” God’s word is our sword, which cuts through the doubts and deceit from the enemy. Ephesians 6 tells us to “Stand firm, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. Take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” We resist the enemy by keeping our eyes on Jesus. By reminding ourselves of the truth—that we are righteous through Christ. By believing He is who He says He is, and we are who He says we are. Revelation 12:11 says, “They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb.” What power can his accusations have when the Lamb of God has taken away our sin? (John 1:29).
STEP 3: Remind him
Remind him that the grave is empty. Remind him that he already lost. Remind him that Christ has justified you, and His blood has given you perfect standing. When the enemy comes against you, remind him that Jesus’ blood has paid those accusations! Remind him that Jesus himself defends and represents you, as your advocate in Heaven. Remind him that you are healed, whole, and perfected through the blood of the Lamb. Say it out loud – there is power in the words you give voice to. Rebuke him in the name of Jesus and, as you remind him of these things, let it also remind you of the depth of God’s love for you.
When he tries to come through your front door, stand in his way. Recognize him by his lies, resist him with God’s truth, and remind him that he has no place in your life.