by Neil Anderson
Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts
Paul instructs us to make no provision for the flesh. What if we do ? We are told to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. What if we don’t? James 4:7 admonishes us to “resist the devil and he will flee from you.” What if we don’t resist him? Is he required to flee from us if we don’t take our stand against him? No, if we don’t resist him, he doesn’t have to go. We have the assurance of God’s protection, but we must assume our responsibility to personally resist Satan.
Ephesians 6:10-17 outlines the armor of God which believers are instructed to put on in order to “stand firm against the schemes of the devil” (verse 11). But if we go into battle without some of our armor, are we impervious to getting wounded? No, if we fail to cover ourselves with the armor God has provided, we are vulnerable.
James 4:1 reveals that the source of our quarrels and conflicts is the pleasures that “wage war in your members.” Paul instructed, “Do not let sin reign in your mortal body that you should obey its lusts” (Romans 6:12). The world, the flesh and the devil are continually at war against the life of the spirit within us. But what if we don’t fight back? Will we still be victorious over the pleasures and lusts which strive to reign over us? No, they will control us if we remain passive.
Choosing truth, living a righteous life, and donning the armor of God is each believer’s individual responsibility. I cannot be responsible for you, and you cannot be responsible for me. I can pray for you, encourage you in the faith
, and support you, but if you go into the battle without your armor on, you may get hurt. As much as that may be a matter of concern for me, I still cannot make those decisions of responsibility for you. Those choices are yours alone.
Prayer: Loving Father, thank You for investing Yourself in me. Equip me to graciously invest myself today in ministry to others.