Take Heart… the enemy’s roar is but a whisper in the presence of our Almighty God.
There was a season in my life where it seemed like the enemy had more power than our Almighty God. I remember crying out to God saying, “Your Word tells us that the enemy “prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). Why does he have so much power? Why is his ‘roar’ so loud?”
Thankfully, the truth is that our Lord Jesus is the bigger lion with the loudest roar. He is the Lion of Judah and seated on the throne. And the enemy is a defeated foe.
As followers of Christ, we often need that reminder. We can get overwhelmed by the enemy’s roars through the fears and doubts, temptations and lies he throws at us to the point that we no longer hear the loudest roar of our mighty God and the truth of His Word.
The apostle John paints for us a glorious scene in heaven in which our Lord Jesus Christ is called the Lion of the tribe of Judah: “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered” (Revelation 5:5).
But do we live like a people whose King has conquered? Or do we let the roars of the enemy and our sin drown out the truth of God’s Word and His mighty power that promises us victory in Jesus?
Let’s look at some ways we can faithfully pick up our mighty weapons of God’s armor, His Word, and prayer in order to daily live in Christ’s unshakable victory.
Do we live like a people whose King has conquered?
I recently heard about a Sunday school teacher who asked her class why Daniel wasn’t afraid when he was thrown into the lion’s den, and one little girl said, “because the Lion of Judah was in there with him.” Oh, that we could have such faith!
One of the most powerful pictures of how the Lion of Judah hems us in with His protection is through His armor as outlined in Ephesians 6:10–18. I believe that each piece of the armor is related to the Person and work of Christ. We are clothed in His protection through the helmet of His salvation, the breastplate of His righteousness, the belt of His truth, the sandals of His peace, and the shield of His faithfulness. We are given the mighty weapons of God’s Word and prayer to fight against the enemy’s lies and temptations.
But how do we do that practically?
The Roar of God’s Word
We see in Matthew 4:1–11, that Jesus faced a brutal battle against Satan in the wilderness after He had been fasting for forty days. The incarnate Jesus was most likely physically and mentally exhausted when the enemy came at Him with the roars of temptations. Isn’t that just like Satan, strategically attacking us when we are alone and at our weakest?
But Jesus stood His ground. In this exchange between Him and the devil, it’s almost as if they are engaged in hand-to-hand combat, swords drawn and clashing. Satan’s sword was forged in lies and brandished with twisted words of half-truths. Jesus, even though He was physically weakened, kept picking up His sword, forged in the refining fires of the truth of God’s Word, and striking His foe throughout this battle.
How stunning to see the Living Word use the written Word as His weapon of choice. We, too, can wield God’s Word as a weapon against the enemy’s lies and temptations. That’s why it’s so important to study God’s Word and hide it in our hearts.
In a particularly difficult season for our family, my husband Rick and I began to read and pray God’s Word together, often out loud. We’d spend time each morning praying God’s Word over our marriage and over our children. One of our favorite passages we prayed was Psalm 91. We prayed it so much that we ended up memorizing it without really trying.
How stunning to see the Living Word use the written Word as His weapon of choice.
The Roar of Prayer
The enemy wants to keep us from prayer because he is threatened when God’s people pray. That’s why I think Paul’s teaching about the armor closes with focusing on the importance and power of prayer (see Ephesians 6:18).
Prayer is often elusive for us, isn’t it? I know I have been there. May we not let that continue to be our story, where the enemy wins by keeping us from prayer because we are so busy serving God or because we are apathetic or bored with prayer. What if, instead, we could discover a fresh commitment to being prayer warriors?
Let’s ask God to awaken our hearts for prayer and to help us not take it for granted. A very practical way to pray more consistently is to get a notebook as a prayer journal where you write out your prayers to God. I began doing that almost twenty years ago and found that it helps me keep my mind from wandering and to stay focused in prayer.
Some ideas include:
- Write out the prayers we find in Scripture as your own prayers for your loved ones.
- Journal prayers of worship and praise to your God. You can write your own or take a passage like Psalm 145 and write it out as a prayer of praise.
- Focus on one of God’s names or attributes that mean the most to you right now.
- Write a prayer of thanksgiving, listing all you can be thankful for, even on the hard days.
- Turn your fears or worries for loved ones into prayers on their behalf.
- Write a prayer of lament when the storms of life threaten to overtake you. David modeled this often (see Psalms 6, 13, and 77).
May we choose to run to His Word and prayer as our mighty weapons to fight the enemy and to stand in the victory that Jesus has already won for us through His death, resurrection and ascension. And may we always remember the words our Lord Jesus spoke over His disciples, just hours before His arrest and crucifixion:
“I have said these things to you, that in me, you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
Adapted from The Loudest Roar by Judy Dunagan (©2022). Published by Moody Publishers. Used with permission.
JUDY DUNAGAN is the author of The Loudest Roar: Living in the Unshakable Victory of Christ. A wonder seeker of God and His Word, Judy is passionate about discipleship and making God’s Word and prayer come alive in everyday life. She is a speaker and Bible teacher and an acquisitions editor of women’s Bible studies and books at Moody Publishers. Judy and her husband, Rick, live in Colorado and are the joyful grandparents of five grandchildren. Connect at: judydunagan.com where you will find some free prayer resources.