What’s your worst temptation, the one that has repeatedly taken you off at the knees? Discouraged? Yeah, I know. Maybe you thought, if you just trusted in Jesus, all that stuff would be over and done with. Instead, maybe it got worse. That’s because of this truth:
Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8b)
If you go hiking in certain parts of Africa, you have to know lions see you as pretty tasty lunch. Knowing that, you take precautions. The same is true for how we must prepare to fend off the persistent attacks of Satan. What sort of precautions? Look at the first part of the verse:
Be sober-minded; be watchful. (1 Peter 5:8a)
There’s a reason it says on the pill bottle “Do not drive or operate heavy machinery.” If you can’t think clearly, you cannot react quickly. That’s why so much trouble comes to those who are drunk or stoned. Lions don’t attack the prey who are alert and ready; they go after the ones who are distracted, asleep or slow. Being clear-headed alone is not enough. You have to also pay attention. Don’t text and drive; don’t go bopping through life without staying alert for dangerous situations.
A buddy of mine has been sober for over 30 years. He told me the temptation to imbibe “never sleeps.” So, he stays alert, watchful, so he can steer clear of any temptation that might prove too much. Good advice for all of us.
Staying clear-headed and watchful are good defensive measures against the constant temptations of life. But there are offensive measures given in this passage as well.
More, next time.