February 9, 2012 • By Ed Wrather
Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. - James 4:7-8 NKJV.
It was in a Bremen, Georgia, Wal-Mart that 25-year-old Thomas Woods attempted the abduction. Brittney Baxter was looking at toys in the toy aisle with her mother nearby when the attack occurred. Woods grabbed Brittney and attempted to carry her away, but he was unprepared for a seven-year-old second grader to fight back. Brittney said this about how she fought back, “I was kickin' and screamin' and then he put his hand over my mouth, but I kept kicking.” Woods dropped Brittney and fled from the store. Brittney said that she was thankful that her parents and teachers had taught her how to fight when a stranger attacked. Woods is a parolee on parole for manslaughter, and he was arrested a short time later. (thewiregrassnews.com 02.09.12; Fox News 02.09.12)
A little seven-year-old girl gives all of us an example of what to do when we are experiencing a spiritual attack. Brittney did what she had been taught to do and was being obedient to her parents by fighting back. The first step in winning a spiritual battle is to be obedient to God. “Submit to God.” Do what God would have you to do and not what the devil, or the world, or your flesh may want. If you have sin in your life, the place to begin your battle is on your knees in confession as we are told in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” That is how you do what the apostle James tells you to do when he says, “Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”
The next step in fighting a spiritual battle is to “resist.” Your resistance has already begun when you submit yourself to God. However, there is more to it than that. Jesus gives us a couple of examples of how to resist and overcome the devil and his demonic minions. When Jesus was tempted by the devil in the wilderness (Matthew 4), Jesus responded with the Word of God. When Jesus was tempted by the devil to use the power of God to give Himself food, Jesus responded by saying, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” When the devil tempted Jesus to demonstrate His power, Jesus responded by saying, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’” When the devil tempted Jesus with the kingdoms and riches of this world if Jesus would worship him, Jesus responded by saying, “For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’” As we are told in Ephesians 6:17b to, “take...the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
Another example given by Jesus in fighting spiritually is given when He cast out demons His disciples were unable to cast out in Mark chapter 9. When Jesus was asked by His disciples why they could not cast the demons out, Jesus responded by saying, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting (Mark 9:29).”
In addition, to the examples given to us by Jesus in the Gospels, we are told in Ephesians 6:11 to “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” The apostle Paul then describes the “armor of God” in verses 12 through 18.
So, before you give up and wave the white flag of surrender to the temptations of the devil and his demons...in the words of Brittney Baxter try some “kickin' and screamin’.” Do some screamin' and quote the Word of God out loud and in your mind. Do some kickin' and pray in the Name of Jesus for God to come to your aid. Because if you “resist the devil” he will “flee from you.”