Today we know much about the Devil and Demons. Isaiah 14:12-15: “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou come down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the height of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shall be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.”
Rev. 12:9: “So the great Dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the devil and Satan, who decieved the whole world, he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.”
1st Peter 5:8, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking who he may devour.”
But does the devil know who you are? Pastors, Preachers, Deacons, Teachers, Moms and Dads! ,Does he know you by name? How did Paul get that way? Why did demons know Paul? Was it because of the stonings, stripes, imprisonment, shipwreck, snakebites? Please know that God and Paul had such a relationship that they were on intimate terms. And because of this relationship, while the Apostle Paul lived, the devil had no peace. This morning I found at least…
4 Steps On How To Make The Devil Nervous:
1. Committed Christians Make The Devil Nervous:
Committed Christians are those who are sold out, washed in the blood, filled with the spirit, and schooled in the word.
To me, one of the most beautiful and meaningful passages is found when Paul: in essence says: “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (Gal. 2:20)
What does this verse mean? Let us examine this passage and then compare it to our own lives to see if we are as committed to Christ as Paul was. We Must Die! Paul first stated, “I have been crucified with Christ.” I believe that Paul has reference to his own conversion. Paul taught the Romans, “knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.” (Rom. 6:6). The act of baptism is what Paul was speaking! When we were baptized, we died to sin and thus figuratively “crucified” ourselves with Christ.
I don’t believe water baptism saves you, but it is very important to be baptized. Water baptism is an experience after salvation to confirm and strengthen your commitment to live a godly life. The baptismal waters represent a burial ground. When you’re buried with Christ in baptism, you are proclaiming to heaven, earth and hell that the old you no longer exists. To be buried with Jesus means that your old self died to sin just as Jesus did when He was made sin for us (Romans 6:3, 6, 10-12). That’s why we are immersed. It’s a picture of burial.
Coming up out of the water signifies our being raised to new life in Christ. To be raised with Jesus means making Him Lord of every area of your life—spirit, soul and body. You’ve been bought with the blood of Jesus and you belong to Him. Every day you now ask, “Lord, where do You want me to go? What do You want me to say? What do You want me to be? Not my will, but Thy will be done.”
As Christians, we cannot continue to live in the ways of sin. We must live a life that the Lord and His will have dictated. Therefore, the next logical step is to be raised to live with Christ. Christians Must Surrender All! “It is no longer I who live,” Paul states. Here I believe we can see what kind of commitment Paul had made to live for the Lord. We must understand that if we want to live as Paul lived, we must realize that we must surrender our wills to the will of Christ. Yes, we are alive physically. Yes, we must still make proper choices and overcome temptation! However, we do these things by making the choice when we obeyed the gospel to allow Christ to live in us.
We do this by allowing His word to dwell in us. In an interesting passage found in Galatians, Paul states that those who walk after the Spirit “. . .do not do the things that you wish” (Gal. 5:17). To be totally committed to Christ is allowing Him to guide us in our lives. Doing and living the way He lived, following the examples that He set (1 Cor. 11:1; 1 Peter 2:21-22). Justified by Faith A committed life to Christ does not come by accident. It is a life that is purposefully lived. Paul explains, “I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” It will take great faith to live for our Lord. Paul had this faith in Christ . This faith that we have will lead us to walk by faith.
2 Tim. 4:6-8: “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who loves His appearing.”
Wouldn’t that be wonderful to be able to state these same words when it comes our time to die? I believe Paul could state these words because of he was totally committed to God in his life. I also believe that if we would be totally committed to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we could declare the same thing. It will take commitment on our parts to go to heaven! Thus, I ask you, “how committed to the Lord are you?”
2. Praying Christians Make The Devil Nervous:
Time you spend with the Lord is more effective than the time you spend for the Lord. *The devil would rather have you work, for work can be done in the flesh. True prayer can only be done in the spirit. The devil doesn’t care how many people talk Christianity, He cares how many live it on their knees.
Read Eph. 6:18-19: “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel.”
James 5:16: “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”
3. Forgiving Christians Make The Devil Nervous:
One of Satan’s best tools is to get Christians working against each other.
Col.3:13: “Forbearing one another, and forgiving one each other, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.” Use the Lord’s Prayer here Matt. 6:9-15.
4. United Christians Make The Devil Nervous:
*I Cor.1:10: Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”
Those demons who chased off the sons of Sceva were showing the whole world the difference between the true power of God at work in the life in a man of God and the fake spirituality of those who only had the appearance but not the reality of God’s power. Those demons unwittingly triggered a mighty revival in Ephesus! God can use demons to start a revival if he has too, but I would rather let God begin a revival by using you and I! Let the revival begin in me! Let in begin in me, spread through the church and then spill out into the world around me. Does the devil know who you are?……The evil spirit said: “Jesus I know and Paul I know, but who are you” ? After the sons of Sceva were chased away by the man possessed by demons, a mighty revival broke out in Ephesus and lives were forever changed. That’s the result of a true revival! They threw out their occult books and all their idolatrous materials; over 50,000 pieces of silver worth of unclean materials were destroyed because those Christians now had the real thing.
Does the devil know your name?
A few years ago a national Radio Talk Show Host and a call-in listener were talking about Christianity in America. As the conversation continued, the host, who is an avowed agonistic, said, “Why do Christians think they had anything special to do with the founding of this country… Anybody who reads history books knows that Christianity was no more involved in America’s founding than any other religion.” Unfortunately and inaccurately that seems to be the prevalent thought of many Americans today. But the truth of the matter is we are a nation that has been shaped by the Judeo-Christian ethic found throughout the Bible. We are a Biblical nation from our very roots. But are we a Christian nation? To answer that question we must define the meaning of the question itself. If being a “Christian nation” means that everyone is a Christian, then we are not a Christian nation. But if it means that Christianity was the religion of the overwhelming majority of our nation’s Founding Fathers and if its influence is undeniably seen in our nation’s Founding Documents, and that Christian ethics and moral codes were accepted as the rule for our social order, then yes, we are a Christian nation! Certainly those throughout America’s history were not shy about this fact. The Legislature of New York declared in 1838: “This is a Christian nation. Ninety-nine hundredths, if not a larger proportion, of our whole population, believe in the general doctrines of the Christian religion.” It was the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court in the year 1892 that declared in the court’s opinion the United States was a “Christian nation.” Our nation’s twenty-eight president, Woodrow Wilson in his famous address, “The Bible and Progress,” stated the following, “America was born a Christian nation. America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scripture.” Today let’s look at America in the context of Christianity’s influence upon it.
1. America’s Beginnings:
It is safe to say that the Christian faith was involved in practically every aspect of our nation’s beginnings. Christopher Columbus in 1504 wrote his reason for setting forth to discover a new land to be: “I was led of the Holy Spirit to carry the message of the Gospel to undiscovered lands.” The purpose of the Pilgrims in coming to America was to establish a political commonwealth governed by biblical standards. The “Mayflower Compact” stated that they had come for “the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith.”
The Pure-i-tans, realizing the backslidden state of the Church of England set forth to America for the stated purpose of showing how a nation could prosper it citizens lived under the laws of God. (1) Plymouth Charter says the Colony was established: “To advance the enlargement of the Christian religion to the glory of God Almighty.” (2) Delaware Charter defines the purpose of their Colony, “To further propagate the Holy Gospel.” (3) Virginia Charter assures the right for people to live in “Christian peace” and instructs the people to: “Propagate the Christian religion to such people who yet live in ignorance of the true knowledge and worship of God.” (4) The Rhode Island Compact: “We submit our persons, lives, and estates unto our Lord Jesus Christ, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.” On July 4, 1776 Continental Congress signed the “Declaration of Independence” which states their belief in Creator God. Before signing they called the signers to prayer and fasting to the God of the Bible. Now think of the role the Christian Church and its pastors played in America’s early days. A Preacher wrote our “Pledge of Allegiance.” Another Preacher, wrote the Hymn “My Country ’Tis of Thee.” Yet, another Preacher wrote the introduction of the first Amendment to the Constitution. First part goes:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; Prior to the War Between the States, 90% of all of America’s College Presidents were Preachers of the Gospel. Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown, Dartmouth, William and Mary and Columbia were founded by Christian preachers and church affiliations with the expressed intent to educated youth for Christ. John Harvard a Pastor in Charlestown, Massachusetts and the man for whom Harvard University was named stated that the purpose of the University was, “That every student be plainly instructed and earnestly pressed to consider well the main ends of his life and studies: to know God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life and therefore to lay Christ in the bottom as the foundation of all knowledge and learning, and see that the Lord only giveth wisdom. To let everyone seriously set himself by prayer in secret to seek Christ Jesus as Lord and Master.” Even Harvard’s original seal, which can be seen on the campus today, states these words, “Truth for Christ and the Church.” Columbia University wrote that it was founded for: “the chief things that are aimed in this college are to teach and gauge the children to know God and Jesus Christ and to love and serve Him in all sobriety.” American’s first schoolbook was the “New England Primer.” It has the Lord’s Prayer on its cover. It taught the alphabet in Theological verse. A. In Adam’s fall we sinned all. B. It’s Heaven to find, the Bible’s mind. C. Christ crucified for sinners died. Hold in your hand a one dollar bill. On the back is the Great Seal of our nation. On the seal is an unfinished pyramid. Above it is the eye of God. It is surrounded by the words in Latin, “God has smiled upon our beginnings.” And since 1865 purposefully printed in the center of our currency are the words,” In God We Trust.” The Influence of God upon the founding of our great nation is so evident that no one who was a student of historical accuracy would reasonably deny it. And where has this denial of God brought us as a Nation? Think with me for a moment.
2. America At The Present:
Of course there is much that is good about America; she is still the greatest nation on earth. But even so we have much to be concerned about. Such as Abortion, Gay Marriage,
3. America’s Hope:
Good sense would tell us that if we were once great as a nation then it would behoove us to return to that which made us great in the beginning. But what are we to do? Can we really make any difference? Indeed we can. 1. We must Pray. 2. We must work within the Process. 3. We must Participate. 4. We must Persevere. 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” Ps 33:12: “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people He has chosen as His own inheritance.”
How many times have you found yourself in this spot? A spot commonly referred to as, between a rock and a hard place? Here, God had freed His children from Egypt using Moses as the messenger and deliverer. He brought them out of Egypt and into the path of the Red Sea with the Egyptian army hot on their heels. They had to go forward and the only way to go was the direction of the Red Sea.
So God parted the sea and allowed His children to pass through it on dry ground, then immediately closed it back up swallowing the Egyptian Army. Here we learned of how God made the impossible possible and protected His children from certain death by the hands of the Egyptians. What is your rock and hard place? No matter what it is, God has the answer. He did not have your soul bought and paid for just so you could die. He bought and paid for your soul so you may have eternal life. Now is the time to get focused on the promised land not on the past.
No matter where you have been and no matter what you have done, He is waiting for you. You have to make the choice to follow Him and to allow Him to lead you to the promise land. He has a plan for each one of us, however, just like the Children of Israel, we seem to continue to wander in the wilderness. In the wilderness God provided food, shelter and water for the Children of Israel. And so He does today. I have come before you today an ordinary man who faces the same temptations everyday that anyone else faces. Even though temptation is ever present, it is never more than the next person faces and there is always an answer provided.
1 Cor 13: 13: There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
No matter what temptation you are facing, there is an escape. We must also understand that God is concerned with our soul not our body. He is not concerned with what can kill the body but rather what can kill the soul. You see the killing of the body cannot separate us from God only the killing of the soul can do that. So what is your wilderness? Drugs? Alcohol? abuse? hate?….. God doesn’t care where you are coming from, He only cares that you follow Him back to the promised land. He will guide you and strengthen you. He will grant you a full pardon and never leave you nor forsake you. It is only us that forsakes Him. Here in Exodus God did not leave the Israelites in Egypt to die nor did he allow the Egyptian Army to kill them at the Red Sea.
He continued with them and, even though they kept turning back to their sinful ways, He provided for them all they needed to sustain life and to live in the wilderness until they finally decided it was time to take God at His Word and surrender there all to Him.
God provided Manna (Ex 16:35) to the Israelites for forty years as they wandered. Now look at this again. These were not non believers, they were the Children of God and he delivered them out of Egypt. He did not deliver them out to die. No, He delivered them out to live.
He, once again, had to show the Israelites that He was their God and thus their Protector. He used Moses to part the Red Sea. And after the winds came, and the sea was parted, they passed and the Egyptians were swallowed up and all drowned.
Again, I must tell to you, God has no cares of, where you have been or what you have done. He is waiting with open arms to welcome you back to His home. He is waiting to pardon you and give you eternal life. His plan is for you to reach the promise land.
We have to try to get away from allowing the lust of the flesh to guide us and begin to allow God to guide. We have to stop listening to our desires and begin to realize God’s desire for us. Even after He parted the Red Sea and allowed them to pass on dry ground, as soon as they were left alone, they began to worship idols and party and forgot about God.
Then Moses came back down the mountain and saw these things. God could have just left them there to die, could have stopped providing manna and water, yet He chose to continue to provide for them. He allowed for forgiveness and He allowed them to continue to the promised land. As I said earlier, They had to go forward and the only way to go was the direction of the Red Sea. The other side was the promised land. The only way to go to heaven is through Jesus Christ. To the child of God I say, and if this speaks to you…whatever crutch you use for an excuse not to be fully committed to Jesus, don’t you think it’s time to throw it away?
To you that may be here and don’t have a personal relationship with God, do you want to stay in the wilderness or do you want to go to the promised land? If you want the promised land then what are you waiting for? What is holding you back?
“Oh pastor, I have done terrible things in my life”. So did king David. He sinned with a married woman, had her husband killed. He the one that wrote “The Lord is my Shepard” “Well pastor I plan on becoming a Christian but not today”.
A young man from Temple Baptist who helped us in our VBS this past week told me that he talked to one young boy about the Lord a few weeks back and the boy told him he know he needed to be saved but not just yet. He had made big plans now since he was about to graduate. Well, about three weeks ago I worked a funeral…it was that boy. Killed in a car wreck. He was one of the three that was killed. A week ago Friday we burred a little 2 year old boy. June 11th we burred a 19 year. He drowned in a pool.
One person commits suicide about every 40 seconds, one person is murdered every 60 seconds…Currently, the world death rate per day holds at 153,000 people. This in turn translates to 6,390 deaths per hour.
ONLY ONE LIFE, ‘TWILL SOON BE PAST; ONLY WHAT’S DONE FOR CHRIST WILL LAST.
So I ask again….What are you waiting on?
Prayer of Salvation or the Sinner’s Prayer:
If you want to invite Jesus to come into your heart and save you from your sins pray this prayer: Dear God…I am a sinner…I’m sorry for my sins…I admit I am a sinner and I am asking you to forgive me of all my sins.
I believe in my heart that You are the only Son of God, that You died for my sins and that You rose again the third day. Thank you Jesus for dying for me. Thank You for shedding Your Blood on the Cross so that I could be saved.
Now, thank You Jesus for saving my soul from hell and writing my name in the Lambs Book Of Life. I ask this all in Your Name, Amen.
If you prayed that prayer with a sincere heart you are now a child of God. Please let us know and we will put you on our praise item list. May God richly bless you.