How to Avoid Being Destroyed by the Devil (Part 2): How to Fight Back Against the Devil


Our enemy, the DevilThe Bible says in James 4:7: "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." 

As you may recall, we are in a series titled "How to Avoid Being Destroyed by the Devil". Last week, the first message in the series was titled, "The Unseen Devil is Just as Real as Our Unseen God". In that message, we covered three important points, which are as follows: 

Daniel Whyte III

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1. We need to understand that Satan has the power to take thoughts out of our minds. 

2. We need to understand that Satan has power to put thoughts in our minds.

3. We need to understand that Satan will try to get us to do the right thing in the wrong way. 
Our message for today is titled, "Why You Must Fight Back Against the Devil". 

I. God Commands Us to Resist the Devil 

The Bible exhorts us to fight. James 4:7 says, "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." The word "resist" literally means "fight back."  

Let's say a policeman goes to arrest a criminal, and the criminal resists arrest. What does that mean? It means he is doing everything in his power to keep the policeman from arresting him. He is fighting back. 

When Satan attacks, the average Christian prays. Now there is nothing wrong with praying, but the promise is not, "Pray, and I will make the Devil flee from you." The promise is "Resist the devil and he will flee from you." Many Christians don't know what it is to have the devil flee, because they have never resisted him. 

The average Christian never hears much about the enemy; and as a result, most of his actions are God-ward. But God didn't promise, "Pray, and I will make the Devil flee from you." He did not say, "Tithe, and I will buy him off." He didn't say, "Go soul-winning, and the Devil won't bother you." What He did say was, "Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you." "Resist" is the key word. If the Devil is to flee, we must resist him. 

One of Andrew Jackson's boyhood friends said, "I could throw Andrew nine times out of ten, but he wouldn't stay throwed." 

Billy Bray, the Cornish miner, often did battle with the Devil. One day, Billy was digging little shriveled-up potatoes in his garden. The Devil began to put thoughts into Billy's mind: "Billy, if God loved you, you would have big, nice potatoes instead of those little shriveled-up ones!" He kept bothering him until Billy shouted out loud, "You Devil, I've got your tricks at home in a Book, and it says in John 8:44 that you are a liar and the father of it. Besides that, when I served you, I didn't have any potatoes at all! Now git!" 

Billy Bray did what we must learn to do: "Resist the devil and he will flee from you." Fight back. 

Not a single verse in the Bible tells you to run from the Devil. There is a verse that says, "Flee also youthful lusts," but the Bible never says flee from the Devil. The Bible says to make the devil flee from you. 

Most Christians take only God-ward actions. For instance, a Christian may be worrying over unpaid bills and finding it hard to go to sleep. So they pray for help not to worry. 
Now there is nothing wrong with praying, and we should pray about everything. But the problem is, those worries are put into the mind by Satan. He is saying, "You can't pay your bills. What are you going to do next week when the other bill comes due?" 

We read in Philippians 4:6, "Be careful for nothing." or "Don't even worry about one thing." Now, the Devil says, "Worry." But God says "Don't even worry about one thing." The only way to get rid of worry is to take Satan-ward action. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you. The moment you begin to worry, realize that this is the Devil telling you to do something that God has already told you not to do. God said do not worry about even one thing, and the Devil is putting the thought into your mind to worry about your bills. 

The way to get rid of worry is to resist the Devil. And when he flees, so will the worry. 

II. The Tools We Have for Fighting Back 

But how do we fight back? If this is a battle, what are our weapons? Turn with me to Ephesians chapter 6, verse 10. This passage describes the Christian's armor: 

      Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
      Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
      For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
      Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
      Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
      And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
      Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
      And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:  

Now, notice that there is only one offensive weapon in the Christian's armor. You have the helmet of salvation, a shield of faith and a breastplate of righteousness. Your feet are shod with the preparation of the Gospel, and you take the Sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God. The Sword is the only offensive weapon mentioned. And the Sword of the Spirit is just as sharp as it ever was. 

Matthew Henry had the following to say about this passage in his famous commentary: 

The Christian armour is made to be worn; and there is no putting off our armour till we have done our warfare, and finished our course. The combat is not against human enemies, nor against our own corrupt nature only; we have to do with an enemy who has a thousand ways of beguiling unstable souls. 
The devils assault us in the things that belong to our souls, and labour to deface the heavenly image in our hearts. We must resolve by God's grace, not to yield to Satan. Resist him, and he will flee. If we give way, he will get ground. If we distrust either our cause, or our Leader, or our armour, we give him advantage. The different parts of the armour of heavy-armed soldiers, who had to sustain the fiercest assaults of the enemy, are here described. There is none for the back; nothing to defend those who turn back in the Christian warfare.  

To the Christian armed for defense in battle, the apostle recommends only one weapon of attack; but it is enough, the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. It subdues and mortifies evil desires and blasphemous thoughts as they rise within; and answers unbelief and error as they assault from without. A single text, well understood, and rightly applied, at once destroys a temptation or an objection, and subdues the most formidable adversary.  

Hebrews 4:12 says, "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." 

III. We Are Already Guaranteed Victory in the Fight With the Devil 

First John 4:4 reads, "Greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world." This verse is an encouragement to fight. This verse is a statement of fact. It is not a magical formula that causes the devil to flee when you quote it. Simply quoting this verse will not insure victory over temptation. The statement of fact is an encouragement to fight because it is an assurance of victory. God is saying that you have within you a greater power than he that is in the world; and if you fight back, you can win! 

Looking at a jet plane, I may say, "Greater is the thrust of those jet engines than the force of gravity." But saying it all day long will never cause that plane to leave the ground. I have just stated a fact; but if that plane flies, its engines must be put into operation. 

First John 4:4 is an encouragement to fight, but you must resist the Devil if you expect him to flee. The power in you is great enough for a victory, but the victory is not automatic. We must take action toward Satan. 

We must learn to use this power and how to resist the Devil. We must put James 4:7 into practice: "Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you." 
Here are some takeaways from this message: 

1. Realize that you have to actively resist the devil.

2. Accept and use the tools that God has given to you

3. Realize that we already have the victory in our fight with the devil. 


Now, if you are listening today and you do not know Jesus Christ as your saviour, then you are still under the Devil's power -- you are still on your way to hell. If you want to be delivered from the Devil, from sin, and from hell, allow me to share with you from God's Word how you can accept the free gift of salvation that Jesus Christ died and rose from the dead to give to you. 

1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God's law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: "For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not." Romans 3:23 reads: "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God."   

2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: "For the wages of sin is death..."   

3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: "But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."  

4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: "For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast."   

5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."   

6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."   

"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."   

If you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me the following simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen. 

Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in twenty-three foreign countries. He is the author of seventeen books. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry which publishes a monthly magazine called The Torch Leader. He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts, The Prayer Motivator Devotional and the Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, and the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message. He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor's degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, and a Master's degree in Religion from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica for twenty-five years. God has blessed their union with seven children. Find out more at

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