Often, the first place the devil attacks is the mind. This is why the mind is called the devil's playground. Because thoughts are forerunners to actions, if Satan can inject wrong thinking, he'll eventually trip you up.
The Devil's Garbage Dump
Think about it. Things like depression, fear and temptation almost always begin in your thoughts. Satan wants nothing more than to use your mind as his garbage dump. He'll whisper things like, "You'll never overcome that;" "God doesn't love you;" or even, "Just one look, one taste, one feel won't hurt."
These are what the apostle Paul referred to as arguments and obstacles that exalt themselves above the knowledge of God (2 Cor. 10:5). In other words, Satan's attacks most often begin as thoughts that he builds up to be more real and tangible than the truth of God's Word. When we entertain these thoughts for too long, we eventually act out upon them.
We all know the power of this:
- When you think about your life to compared someone on Facebook, you start to feel down.
- When you think about an unknown situation, you begin to worry.
- When you start to think about an ooey, gooey chocolate something, you eventually have to have it!
Truly, where the mind goes, the man follows.
But as a Christian, you don't have to take it. The Bible promises that you can resist the devil and he will flee (James 4:7).
How to Resist the Devil
So how do you resist the devil? Ultimately, if the attack starts in the mind, then you should begin there. And that's precisely what Paul instructed. He said that we are "bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ" (2 Cor. 10:5). Practically speaking, this means that when a negative or tempting thought pops into your mind, you take it captive by countering it with a truth from God's Word.
Let's try this for a few situations.
Lust: "I clothe myself in Christ and I stop thinking about indulging my flesh and its desires" (Rom. 13:14).
Anxiety: "I cast all of my worries on the Lord because He cares for me" (1 Pet. 5:7).
Discouragement: "God has turned my sadness into joyful dancing" (Ps. 30:11).
While it's true that you might not be able to control the thoughts that drop into your mind, you don't have to entertain them, and your life doesn't have to be controlled by them. Satan will flee and his influence in your life will diminish when he realizes that your mind is ruled by God's Word and no longer open to his trash.
Kyle Winkler equips people to live in victory. His mobile app, Shut Up, Devil!, is the No. 1 spiritual warfare app; and his recent book, Silence Satan, has helped thousands shut down the enemy's attacks, threats, lies and accusations. Kyle holds a Master of Divinity in biblical studies from Regent University. Get daily encouragement from Kyle on Facebook and Twitter.
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