Summary: The attributes of Satan are discussed according to text verse as well as methods for a Chrisitan to overcome the enemy.
Pleasant Hill Baptist Church of Quitman MS
Pastor Michael DePhillips
Message: "A roaring lion" 1 Peter 5:8 (scripture text)
The first rule of warfare is to know your enemy and the more you know about you enemy, the better able you’ll be to come up with a means of defeating him.
*General Matthew B. Ridgway, former U.S. Army Chief of Staff wrote in his autobiography, SOLDIER, "there are two kinds of information that no commander can do without – information pertaining to the enemy he faces which we call "COMBAT INTELLIGENCE" and information on the terrain where the battle will be fought.
We must know how our "spiritual enemy" thinks, what motivates him and his intrinsic nature to overcome him but the first thing we must study is the nature of our enemy, the devil. Peter described the devil as a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Most big-game hunters consider the lion to be one of the most dangerous animals on the planet. Near our home in Louisiana there was a man who kept some lions in cages he had set up in his yard out in the swamps. I used to love to go there and watch the lions and the tigers but the best time to go was when they were feeding them! They would roar and fight with each other to get the biggest portion of food and it would almost make you hair stand up on end. With the wealth of information available to us today through media, one of the things we’re able to know is how a lion hunts. They watch their prey to see which ones are slow or weak or sick or young or crippled or old and then they launch their attack by charging.
This is really a tactic to push the animal they’re hunting towards one or more lions that have concealed themselves for the ambush. Sometimes lions lope towards a herd of animals and roar to get the herd moving around so they can see which animals are the easiest prey.
* You might find it interesting to know that a real lion actually suffocates the victim by clamping its mouth over the nose and mouth of the victim or by holding the throat. Our enemy suffocates the Christian by shutting off his ability to pray and suffocating us "spiritually".
There have been some who would tell you that the devil is a toothless lion with no ability to hurt us but I would say to you that Satan is a fierce opponent and a deadly enemy. We do ourselves a serious disservice if we discount his existence, take him lightly or believe that we can defeat him in our own strength. Peter also called the devil an ADVERSARY which is someone who opposes us. A real enemy is one who doesn’t like you simply because you exist and who takes personal pleasure in opposing you.
Want you to turn in your Bibles to Revelation 12:7-17 (read) Prayer for confusion in demonic ranks and a binding of their hindrance over the remainder of this service. Pray for a loosing of holy angels to minister unto the saints that they might process the message into their hearts through angelic protection. Jesus once told the disciples when they returned from a great soul winning and healing and casting out demon campaign that they were to rejoice in the fact of their salvation and that he had given them power to trample on scorpions and serpents and to overcome all the power of the enemy yet the average Christian is living a defeated life because we have our eyes focused in the wrong places. Jesus told Peter that the gates of hell wouldn’t prevail against the church and that there was to be a binding and loosing of things on earth to loose things in the heavenlies. The Apostle Paul told us that our battle isn’t with flesh and blood but a "spiritual battle in the heavenly places against principality and power and spiritual wickedness in high places".
And we still choose to show up with a pocketknife at a gunfight and wonder why we lose the battle! There is a story told by a preacher friend of mine whose father fought in that war with a boy from Alabama. They were in boot camp and the whole base was in an uproar because a General had shown up unexpectedly to inspect the troops. They were standing in formation out in the sun in the middle of the day and the General was going up and down the line asking each soldier questions when he finally came to this old boy from Alabama.
Now this old boy wasn’t exactly the pick of the litter and he had been struggling all through bootcamp when the General came up to him and said, "Son, what’s your serial number?" and the boy from Mississippi shouted at the top of his lungs, CORNFLAKES SIR!