“I have come that you may have life and have it to the full” (John 10:10). For many years that was the only part of John 10 that I focused on. Let’s be honest, it’s worth the focus! Who of us does not want life to the fullest, abundant life, life as it was truly intended? Any time we taste of this abundant life we want more. We want to hang on to it, to relish the moment, or to relive it again and again. What gets much less press is the first half of that same verse: “The thief comes to kill, steal and destroy.” Do we believe that? Do we believe that this very day Satan is attempting to kill our will, steal our joy and destroy our lives? If we don’t believe that then we have bought into the lie – the lie that says Satan is no longer an issue since he was defeated through the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus.
One of the most blatant statements against this lie is Peter’s word to the elders and young men in the first century church. “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.” (1 Peter 5:8-9) This statement was made by Peter AFTER the Resurrection. He saw the devil as a real force to fight against, warning the people to be on guard on a day to day basis.
I’m not one to give the devil more credit than he is due or to make him the focus of my day. I am, however, aware that he is still lurking, wanting nothing more than to ruin my walk with Jesus. God invites us into full awareness through Peter’s (and Jesus’) statement. Jesus calls us to be aware of the real evil that exists, however, through Him we have “life to the fullest” that He longs to provide for us.
Lie: The devil is no longer a real consideration because of the Cross
Truth: Our enemy is still attempting to kill, steal and destroy our lives
“Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8)