James 4:7-8 – Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
You must follow the two commands in this verse in proper order. First, you must submit yourself to God by give up your selfish pride. Submitting to the Lord also involves putting on the whole armor of God, an image that includes everything from placing your faith in Him to immersing yourself in the truth of God’s Word (see Eph. 6:11–18). Second, you must resist any temptation that the devil throws your way. Then the Evil One will have no choice but to flee, for you belong to the army of the living God.
Do you have a hard time resisting the temptations the Enemy throws your way? You see, Satan isn’t omniscient, he can’t read your mind or see into your heart, he’s dependent solely upon trial and error to see what works. Therefore, if he sees that a headache will keep you from worship and Bible study, guess what will happen. You’ll have headaches perpetually. If he sees that your kids acting up causes you to pull back, stay home, and not be where you should be, he’ll have found the key to slowing down your walk. Notice, you do not have to overcome the devil, you simply have to resist him. Your challenge this week is to tap into the power of God as you submit to Him and then do your best to resist the devil and the many ways he is trying to cause you to stumble. Get close to the Lord this week and He will equip you to overcome any trial or temptation.