James teaches us to “surrender (submit) ourselves to God” then we are to “resist” the devil. God promises us if we take those two attitudes, the devil will “flee from us.” The word “resist” means to set against or to oppose. As I already mentioned yesterday the first step in resisting evil is submission to God. The other side of submission to God is resistance to evil. They are two sides of the same coin. Jesus set the perfect example for us in his temptations as Matthew chapter four says. Verses 8-10 says, “Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him, ‘All these things I will give you if you will fall down and worship me.’ Then Jesus said to him, ‘Away with you, Satan! For it is written, you shall worship the Lord your God and Him only you shall serve.’”

The Christian life is often a battle. (Duh?) It’s not a bed of roses or an easy chair. It’s rift with struggles, temptations, trials, suffering and hardship. If you’re not experiencing any of those right now, wait until tomorrow. Jesus told us that as long as we’re in this world there will be trials and sorrows. The source of that pain and hurt is the evil one. Ask Job! He was the victim of the insidious attacks of Satan to the degree most of us (thankfully!) will never experience. Realize that the pains, hurts, and hardships and temptations of life are the instruments of Satan to draw you from God into his rebellious thinking. But we need not fear him. He has no power over us at all unless we flip the coin over and submit to him and his ways of thinking rather than God. We’re to resist. We must not let him gain a foothold on any ground in our lives. He wants to devour our souls, ruin our lives, and destroy God’s wonderful plans and purposes for our lives. We must resist!

Jesus resisted Satan’s temptations, both at the beginning of His ministry and at the end. Satan fled! He will flee from us as well. John MacArthur writes, “Here is a pledge that the devil can be defeated, as powerful as he is. Even those held in his power (1 John 5:19) can be triumphant. The Lord Jesus defeated him at His temptation and at the Cross (John 12:31–33) and left him vulnerable. He cannot hold a sinner against that sinner’s will. He can’t even lead a believer into sin without the consent of that believer’s will. When confronted and resisted with the truth of the gospel, he flees, releasing his hold as that repentant sinner who believes is delivered from darkness to light. After salvation he comes again and again through the world system’s working on the flesh, but can be defeated repeatedly by the believer who has the ‘sword of the Spirit’ and the rest of the armor (Eph. 6:10–17).”