The Devil Prowls
Did you know THE DEVIL PROWLS? 1 Peter 5 tells us about the devil prowling beginning in verse 6 which reads:
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that He might lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.
Be alert and of sober mind. 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 the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.
While we were created in the image of God, our human nature means that we are tempted to sin continually and, as a result, none of us is without sin (Proverbs 20:9, John 8:7). Since the time of Adam, man has been sinful. However, that does not mean we should just accept our sinfulness. We are offered forgiveness of our many sins if we but ask for forgiveness through the grace of God (Acts 2:38).
But let’s go back to this Devil mentioned in 1 Peter 5:6-9. Why does the devil prowl? A prowl suggests a desire to be undetected. As a result, we make bad decisions thinking we did it all on our own without realizing the role of the devil in suggesting sinful behavior. We must know our Bible well enough to detect the difference between sinful behavior and God inspired behavior. When we know the difference and sinful options are put before us, our conscience will tell us the difference. But our conscience does not control the choice we make. The sinful behavior might look very attractive at the moment and all of us are capable of rationalizing which means finding numerous excuses for engaging in the bad behavior. The devil is very skillful in helping us find rationalizations. When we fall for the rationalization, it means the devil has been successful in his prowling around. The devil got you.
Now you might reason, this isn’t me. I have not robbed a liquor store or committed any other crime so I have eluded the devil all day today. But think of the moment in which you were angry with someone or thing. Consider the remark you made that would not be considered kind or the commitment you made and did not keep. What was going on in your head during those events? Were you talking with the devil or not being on guard and thus letting the devil get too close to you? Where was God in your thinking when these thoughts entered your mind? What was your attitude like toward others, toward God and toward yourself?
The devil is never far away and is watching for the right moment to strike. What is the devil telling you right now? He might be saying, ‘I don’t prowl. I’m your friend. I just want you to have a good time.” Then if your “good time” gets you in trouble, what does the devil do? Listen to him laugh because you fell for it.
While you consider yourself a wonderful person, are there times when your guard is let down so that the devil might strike? Think about how to keep that guard up. Part of that is avoiding places where you will be tempted and avoiding the people whose influence on you is negative. The devil is on the prowl as we saw in 1 Peter 5. Don’t let him get you.
Kenneth Oosting, Ph D
THE DEVIL PROWLS
The primary purpose of the study questions is to help the reader to more fully grasp the significance and implications of the topic. Recipients may send comments or responses to God’s Plan for Service by email to [email protected] or mail to GPS, 1226 Knox Valley Drive, Brentwood, TN 37027.
- Think about the decisions you have already made today and the way in which you talked to others.Did the devil affect how you handled these situations?
- Not all bad decisions are directly sinful.Some are just stupid.But think of a sinful act. Did you ask for forgiveness?
- Open your Bible to 1 Peter 5.What does it say to you?