READING: Exodus 19-21
It’s simple: it’s not the devil that we need to fear — it’s God.
I’ve read much about spiritual warfare, and far too many books give the devil much more attention than the Bible does. He’s considered the demon behind every rock, the cause behind every bad choice, the spirit that blocks every attempt of the people of God to do well. In some ways, the attention we give him grants him much more power and influence than he deserves. We wind up fearing him and striving to “ward him off” not unlike the animists around the world try to ward off their own false gods.
I’ll say it again, though: it’s not the devil we are to fear — it’s God. Moses and the people of God learned that lesson when God displayed His power on Mt. Sinai. His voice echoed in thunder, lightning, and a trumpet blast. Smoke rose from the mountain. The power of God was so evident that the people feared even having Him speak to them. Read, then, Moses’ response: “Don’t be afraid, for God has come to test you, so that you will fear Him and will not sin” (Exo. 20:20).
God displayed His glory so that the people might stand in awe of Him, fearing Him to such an extent that choosing to sin should not even be an option. If the people truly feared God with holy reverence, they would make the right choices when temptation arose.
It’s no different for us today. Perhaps we make sinful choices not only because we choose to follow the devil’s lead — but more importantly, because we don’t fear God enough to say “yes” to Him and “no” to the enemy.
ACTION STEPS: Consider these steps today:
- Seriously contemplate how your life would change if you really feared God.
- When temptation comes, think first about standing before a holy God, answering for your decisions. Let holy respect drive you to obedience.
- Spend the day praising God for His greatness.
PRAYER: “Lord, You are great. You are mighty. You are worthy of my praise. You are all I need to convince me to fight temptation today.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Exodus 22-24