Studying in Second Chronicles this week, I seemed to be getting downloads from Heaven as several verses leapt off my screen and quickly rooted in my heart. Hezekiah’s story begins to unfold in chapter thirty and his life has been an inspiration to me since the first days of reading my bible with an awakened mind, twenty-plus years ago. Today I refreshed myself with the story of Hezekiah’s ascension to the throne in Israel, his fearless commitment to spiritual reformation in the land, his prioritizing of worship among God’s priests and people and, ultimately, his success in awakening a nation as he pointed them back to fervent commitment to their God. On the heels of these moving accounts in chapters 30-31, chapter 32 opens with the rising up of the enemy. Is this not the pattern? Someone in the Kingdom (you?) commits to undiluted surrender to Christ and begins to move in intentional strides toward righteousness and purpose…and on the horizon appears intense opposition.
“And they shouted it with a loud voice in the language of Judah to the people of Jerusalem who were on the wall, to frighten and terrify them, in order that they might take the city.” – 2 Chronicles 32:18
This verse reminded me that the enemy knows how to speak my language. Go back and read it again. Satan and his demons have been committed observers of the human race since the collapse of Adam and Eve in the garden. The enemy is not omniscient and cannot know everything – but the enemy is indeed informed and Hell knows precisely how to come against you and me. Allow me, in this post, to use the name Satan as the representative of all the forces and designs of opposition against God. He is the unholy king over every fallen angel. He is the prince of the power of the air and is strategic in his assault against the people of God. The world system is under his sway and he has our culture on auto-pilot, cruising downhill at a 1,000 miles per hour with the brake lines cut. When he comes against you, he knows how to speak to you. He knows exactly what causes you to tremble. Satan is aware of your weakest points and he constantly beats on that bruise. We all have an inner-voice and, for Christians, that voice is to be harmonious with the voice of the Holy Spirit. Satan seeks to impeded, distort and interrupt that voice with a consistent barrage of doubt, fear, guilt and accusation. He is, at the core of his diabolical being, a liar. He lies about everything…and he knows how to speak your language. This is why you sometimes since fear. This is why you might occasionally wrestle with hopelessness. He wants you to be suspicious and paranoid of others. He insists that God is not for you and that He has no genuine love and concern for you. He knows your emotional dialect, your mental accent and your spiritual communication patterns. So he interrupts, seeks to talk over all that is good, and defies you to trust in the goodness of your God.
But you do not have to listen to Him.
Jesus declared that His sheep know His voice (John 10:14-16, 27) and His cadence keeps our hearts and minds secure. The enemy speaks loudly and frequently but, as the great reformer and hymn writer, Martin Luther, penned long ago, “one little word shall fell him”. Ultimately, the course of my life is heavily determined by whom I yield my mind to the most. I can listen to the voice of doubt, fear, dread, self-pity, paranoia and deceit. I can actually do that every day if I choose, or intermittently if that better suits me. Or I can take authority over that vile verbiage and command it to cease. You and I are under no obligation to entertain the dialogue of Hell. We do not have to listen to the enemy – we must not listen to him. We are not called to some presumed level of diplomacy and submit ourselves to people who speak against God’s voice over our lives. Paul said that he didn’t give a minute to people like this (Galatians 2:5). We must protect our minds and keep our heads about us, saints. The enemy knows your language and is likely speaking to you today, seeking to derail you from God’s appointed pathway in your life.
I dare you to refuse him. I dare you to resist him until he flees from you. I dare you to frustrate the schemes of Hell with the decrees of Heaven. I challenge you to stand in the full armor of God which affords no gaps of penetration for your opposition. I exhort you to be stirred and to boldly withstand the taunts of the adversary when he comes to dislodge you from the place of God’s blessing. You have Kingdom rights, authority and privileges. Use them today and you will soon find that the enemy will leave you for a season, seeking some other one whom he might devour, because he has learned that you are one who refuses to fight with him on his terms.