Tuesday, January 23, 2018

When the Lion Roars: Five Promises Christians Can Claim

Blog posts ideas don't always pop into my head fully formed. Sometimes, I open my computer and stare at the blank page, my brain equally blank because I have no idea what to write.

On those days, I use an unusual story prompt: my photo app. I open the photo file and scroll through until something catches my attention or an idea comes to mind. Today, I decided to try a variation on the story-prompt theme. I opened a free photo site and scrolled through until I saw the photo of the roaring lion. A verse from 1 Peter came to mind and a blog post was born. 

"Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour." 1 Peter 5:8 nasb 

The lion's roar is a terrifying sound, and can be heard up to five miles away. According to lionalert.org, "lions roar to tell other lions where they are, to show how big they are, and to warn lions from other prides to keep away from their home territory."   

The lion's roar is a loud message that says, in a way, "I'm here and so big you can't get away. Don't tangle with me. Don't invade my space." It's a message of pride that defies other animals to venture into his territory. 

How does that translate to the spiritual realm? 

1) The lion's roar proclaims his size. The evil one roars to proclaim his dominance over us. He would have us believe he's the biggest, baddest lion in the area, but that's a lie. 

"Greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world." (1 John 4:4) 

If Scripture is true, and it is, Satan is not greater, or more powerful, than our God. 

2) The lion's roar proclaims his proximity. In a way, the roar says, "I'm right on top of you. I have you now." The enemy of our souls would have us believe he's so close we will not be able to resist or flee. Jesus, however, said He and His Father would live in us. 

"If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him." John 14:23 

No matter what the enemy says, He cannot evict our Father. 

3) The lion's roar proclaims his ownership. When the lion roars to proclaim his territory, he defies other lions to risk entering. As Christians, however, we do not belong to the world or the powers of this world. 

"Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body."  1 Corinthians 6:19,20 nasb

Regardless of what the enemy claims, he does not have authority over us. 

4. The lion's roar proclaims his power. The roaring lion would have other lions believe he is big enough and powerful enough to defend that which is his. In that same way, the evil one would have us believe he is powerful enough to destroy us and that God cannot snatch us from his claws nor deliver us in time of danger and temptation.

"No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it." 1 Corinthians 10:13 niv

5. The lion's roar proclaims his victory. A victory in advance of battle is nothing more than a prideful boast. We may experience battle with the evil one, but we have all we need for battle, and we fight a defeated foe.

"Therefore, put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand." Ephesians 6:13 

God has already given us the defensive weapons to protect ourselves from the onslaught of the evil one. He has also given us the Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God, which is the only offensive weapon we will ever need. We must know Scripture, however, to use it. We do have power, but we must be prepared before the lion roars. 

Lions roar, because that's how they're made. The evil one also roars with pride and defiance, because that's who he is. Fear and defeat are his objectives, but we can stand firm in the face of his tactics, if we remember the truth God has given. 

The power, authority, and ownership of our souls were bought by Jesus with His precious blood. The enemy's claim on us has been broken. We have been set free, from sin, death, and the roar of the lion. 

Today, let's evaluate the roar of the evil one in our lives. Do we tremble with fear when he threatens? Does fear cause us to run straight into his lair? Let's remember Whose we are and live as those who have been redeemed. 

We have been freed, so let's live free.
In case you missed yesterday's post, here's the link: When Where You Arrive is Not Where You Meant to Go

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