I’ve been reading through the book of Ephesians each day as I get ready to spend the fall preaching through it. It is interesting how something new jumps out at me each time.
Today, it was in chapter 4, verse 27. It says, “Give no opportunity to the devil.”
This pertains to how we fight the idols of our heart and the sins and temptations we fall into. If you think about it, we give the devil plenty of opportunities to tempt us to sin, to react to our negative emotions, to believe lies. We surround ourselves with people and situations that make it easy to sin, all because we believe we won’t sin. Believing we are strong enough.
Here’s an example. If you are struggling in your marriage to have a good attitude towards your spouse or your kids, to respect your husband or love your wife. Do you have friends who encourage you to do that? Who lovingly listen and then challenge with the gospel the areas of your heart that need to be challenged? Or, do you have friends who simply agree with you that you married a loser or have the worst kids on the planet and you should throw in the towel or at least not try as hard? If it’s option 2, you are giving an opportunity to the devil.
Maybe like most guys, you struggle with porn. Do you have an accountability software on your phone, iPad, computer? Do you spend hours late at night after everyone is in bed on the computer. If you don’t have software on your stuff, staying up late, you are giving the devil and opportunity.
If you are single, do you have friends holding you accountable to not give your heart away? Challenging you if you jump from one relationship to the next because you can’t be alone? If not, you are giving the devil an opportunity.
I could go on and on in other areas of our lives. The point is, we give the devil plenty of opportunities to tempt us to sin. All because we think we can handle it. We let our guard down because we believe we are strong enough.
Do you agree? What areas of your life do you give the devil an opportunity? How have you protected your life, heart, mind or eyes from giving the devil an opportunity?