“So then, submit yourselves to God. Resist the Devil, and he will run away from you.” James 4:7
Often times I want to resist the devil in my own strength. I tell myself I can keep him at bay, I can just say no, I can walk away and that it will make him run away. But the devil in not afraid of me. He is afraid of God within me. Submitting to God is the first step because it is His power within me that gives me the strength to resist the devil. It is God within me that makes the devil run.
What does it mean to submit to God? Lexicon :: Strong’s G5293 – hypotassō – to obey, to subject oneself to. So in submitting to God, what are we to obey? There are three things/persons specifically mentioned in the Bible to obey.
Obey His Word – We should obey His commands, those instructions that are explicitly given. There are many many scriptures about the importance and blessings of obeying His Word. There are also Scriptures that discuss the consequences of not obeying.
“If you obey the commands of the Lord your God, which I give you today, if you love him, obey him, and keep all his laws, then you will prosper and become a nation of many people. The Lord your God will bless you in the land that you are about to occupy.” Deuteronomy 30:16
A consequence of not obeying: “And so people become enemies of God when they are controlled by their human nature; for they do not obey God’s law, and in fact they cannot obey it.” Romans 8:7
Obey your parents– We should obey our parents, and no where in this command is an age limit.
““Respect your father and mother” is the first commandment that has a promise added:”
Ephesians 6:2 and “Children, it is your Christian duty to obey your parents always, for that is what pleases God.” Colossians 3:20
Obey your leaders – We are called to obey our leaders. This is demonstrated throughout the Scriptures, even with ungodly leadership. When followers disobeyed the leaders, the respectfully explained why.
“Obey your leaders and follow their orders. They watch over your souls without resting, since they must give to God an account of their service. If you obey them, they will do their work gladly; if not, they will do it with sadness, and that would be of no help to you.” Hebrews 13:17
When we submit ourselves to God, obeying not only His Word but our parents and leaders, He will empower us to resist the devil. The devil will flee from His presence in our lives as He has already had the victory over the devil.