Switching Sides of the Battle
What is the biggest conflict you are facing today? Is it with a spouse? Is it with your boss? Is it with your bank account? Maybe it’s with alcohol, tobacco, or some other vice? Perhaps it’s an illness or a family member’s illness?
To be sure, all of these can feel like monumental and even impossible challenges. Most of us are facing something that is keeping us up and night wringing our hands, but I can promise you, whatever those trials are, they are not the biggest or worst wars you are waging. Although the world is fraught with battles and struggles that headline the news, there is one conflict that trumps them all—it’s the battle for your immortal soul and salvation.
When you became a Christian, you switched sides in this battle. You used to be on Satan’s side, and now you’re on God’s side—and Satan isn’t happy about it! His number one goal is to get you back, and he’s always tempting you to disobey God and make the switch again. His job description, as found in John 10:10, is “to steal, kill and destroy.”
With that in mind, you can expect that a continual battle will wage on inside you. You will want to make your own decisions instead of relying on God’s instruction in your life. You’ll think you know better than God. When you start giving in to these thoughts, you start changing sides, and Satan puts another successful tick mark by your name.
- James 4:7 “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
Know that you’re not alone in your temptation. God promises to show the way out. When you disobey and give in to sin, remember that God can help you escape. Remember, no matter what, God is always for YOU. He’s willing and waiting for you to seek his counsel.
Unfortunately, the world is loud and busy, and it’s very easy to not listen to His wise counsel, especially when other counsel looks more fun and instantly gratifying. That’s how Satan helps us to forget that God exists. He makes the world, and its ever-ready, ever-accessible advice easily attained by offering it up on a silver platter. He makes you think YOU are in control, and YOU are at the center of the universe. When you are in the middle of that temptation, remember that God is in control and will help you if you simply call on Him.
- 1 Corinthians 10:13 “The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”
Exercise: List three temptations that Satan often uses on you. Now thank God ahead of time that he will show you how to not give into them next time.
NO TEMPTATION HAS OVERTAKEN YOU EXCEPT WHAT IS COMMON TO MANKIND. AND GOD IS FAITHFUL; HE WILL NO LET YOU BE TEMPTED BEYOND WHAT YOU CAN BEAR. BUT WHEN YOU ARE TEMPTED, HE WILL ALSO PROVIDE A WAY OUT SO THAT YOU CAN ENDURE IT.