READ: Genesis 49-50, Psalm 17, Matthew 17, Acts 17
How very frustrating it must be to be the devil. Whatever the devil means for evil (Gen. 50:20), God has the ability to turn for good. Time after time victory cigars in hell have been blown out by the realization of certain defeat grasped from the jaws of victory. “This just in: The cross is still bloody but the blasted tomb is now empty!” God’s unmatched ability to turn the schemes of the enemy into the good of the saints has made both devil and demons insecure. Poor devils. Their only certainty is defeat. God’s faithfulness has robbed them of their parties.
We should not assume, however, that man has no part to play in God’s interventions.
When evil has surrounded us, we must long for deliverance. John Owen reminds us: “Longing, breathing, and panting after deliverance is a grace in itself, having a mighty power to conform the soul to the likeness of the thing longed for.” When evil is seducing us, we have to run away like Joseph, we must purpose with the Psalmist, “I have purposed that my mouth will not transgress…I have kept away from the paths of the destroyer” (Ps. 17:3-4). When we play our part, God confronts the devil and casts him down. Jesus then keeps us as the apple of His eye, sheltered under His wings (Ps. 17:8).
When we think too highly of ourselves, we stumble and are vulnerable to the evil of our enemy. Too much belief in ourselves leads to powerlessness. We often wonder why we can’t cast out devils (Matt. 17: 16). It is because we are too fond of our dignity and not dependent enough on Jesus. Some things He alone can do. Some things we can’t do unless we are willing to fail or appear foolish. Even if it is done through us, it still has to be Jesus that casts down Satan.
It is the lowly and faith filled follower that makes the devil depressed.