June 29, 2011

Vigilant in His Call

1 Peter 5:8-11

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
1 Peter 5:8


Every serious-minded child of God identifies with Peter’s struggle for spiritual consistency. Bold to declare his allegiance to Jesus, Peter was also quick to sell out his commitment under pressure (Mark 14:2931, 66-72). Paul describes our dilemma: “Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me” (Romans 7:21).

The truth is that where the Lord works, Satan “prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” Jesus announces free forgiveness, yet Satan makes us question whether we are worth saving. When truth is declared, Satan questions the Bible’s reliability. Where a spouse is loyal, Satan entices infidelity. Satan is committed to derailing God’s work.

So we are called to “be alert and of sober mind.” How? First of all, we need to learn God’s truth. We must accept God’s Word, take it into our heart, and obey its commands.

We must also listen to advice. By seeking the guidance of trusted, seasoned believers, we learn from the experience of others and tap into their God- given wisdom and insight.

Also we must live in prayer. We daily humble ourselves before God, confessing our sins and seeking his guidance.

Satan is on the prowl. But we need not fear. God’s grace equips us to be vigilant and to stand firm in him.

Lord, I know I am your child, but I am often assaulted by the evil one. Protect me from temptation and write your truth on my heart. Amen.

About the author — Calvin Hoogendoorn

Rev. Calvin Hoogendoorn serves as senior pastor of First Christian Reformed Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Previously he served two churches in Illinois. He and his wife, Carla, have three daughters.

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