YOUR ADVERSARY THE DEVIL

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world (1 Pet. 5:8).

Now in the second year of their coming unto the house of God at Jerusalem, in the second month, began Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and the remnant of their brethren the priests and the Levites, and all they that were come out of the captivity unto Jerusalem; and appointed the Levites, from twenty years old and upward, to set forward the work of the house of the Lord. 9 Then stood Jeshua with his sons and his brethren, Kadmiel and his sons, the sons of Judah, together, to set forward the workmen in the house of God: the sons of Henadad, with their sons and their brethren the Levites. 10 And when the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, they set the priests in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites the sons of Asaph with cymbals, to praise the Lord, after the ordinance of David king of Israel. 11 And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the Lord; because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid. 12 But many of the priests and Levites and chief of the fathers, who were ancient men, that had seen the first house, when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice; and many shouted aloud for joy:13 So that the people could not discern the noise of the shout of joy from the noise of the weeping of the people: for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the noise was heard afar off. (Ezra 3:8-13).

Now when the adversaries of Judah and Benjamin heard that the children of the captivity builded the temple unto the Lord God of Israel; 2 Then they came to Zerubbabel, and to the chief of the fathers, and said unto them, Let us build with you: for we seek your God, as ye do; and we do sacrifice unto him since the days of Esarhaddon king of Assur, which brought us up hither. 3 But Zerubbabel, and Jeshua, and the rest of the chief of the fathers of Israel, said unto them, Ye have nothing to do with us to build an house unto our God; but we ourselves together will build unto the Lord God of Israel, as king Cyrus the king of Persia hath commanded us. 4 Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building, 5 And hired counsellors against them, to frustrate their purpose, all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia. 6 And in the reign of Ahasuerus, in the beginning of his reign, wrote they unto him an accusation against the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem. (Ezra 4:1-6).

When Christians “rejoice” over their successes, should they be careful how loud they shout?  Who might be listening? When the shouts of joy are heard, will vultures be circling? Ezra 3:8-4:6 tells of the seemingly innocent “offers of assistance” one might have to “build your buildings.”

Adversaries cannot stand for Christians to be left alone, and as you see in the passage above, there will always be an enemy who is willing to pay an infiltrator to destroy a true Christian endeavor.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world (1 Pet. 5:8).

3 thoughts on “YOUR ADVERSARY THE DEVIL

  1. How true!!! Just try to read the Bible with your kids in the morning, and see how many extra phone calls mysteriously start coming in! In every good endeavor, we find road blocks and discouragement. Perhaps that should make us smile, and take heart, knowing our effort was enough of a concern to Satan to merit his attack! But we should also pray for that hedge about us, as Satan described in Job 1:10 and David mentions in Psalms 34:7 after he had to change his behavior to escape Abimelech. Like Nehemiah and Moses, we can ask the Lord to remember us for good for our labor (Nehemiah 13:31), and to establish the works of our hands (Ps 90:17). Not least, we also need to consider daily what KIND of work we are pouring our efforts into, and pray for wisdom to know the best, most lasting things to focus on.

    1Cor 3:8-15
    8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.
    9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.
    10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
    11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
    12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
    13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.
    14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
    15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I see this as a particular challenge: “knowing our effort was enough of a concern to Satan to merit his attack!”

      We must be focused day in and day out–being careful not to forget who is our help and our comfort too.

      Like

  2. Beth,
    When I read this, I wondered what experience prompted it. But now I think it’s better without your elaborating about this. I’d forgotten the opposition they faced, its unexpectedness and unusual character.
    Thank you!
    Maria

    Like

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