Winning Against Evil

I. Set your mind on victory. How?

A. Be alert

1 John 5:19 - We know that we are children of God and that the world around us is under the control of the evil one.

2 word pictures the Bible gives to help visualize our situation:

1. We live behind enemy lines.

  • When you look at it like this it makes you want to hide, but look what Jesus prayed for us.

John 17: 15-18 - I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. 16 They do not belong to this world any more than I do. 17 Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth. 18 Just as you sent me into the world, I am sending them into the world.

2. Satan is a roaring Lion

1Peter 5:8 - Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.

  • What is the first rule of Lion tamers? Never turn your back on the Lion!

B. Be Humble

  • An attitude of humility is powerful in defeating evil.

Proverbs 16:18 - Pride goes before destruction, and haughtiness before a fall.

  • We set our minds on victory by being humble. Understanding that the only defense is an offense of submitting to God.

James 4:6-7 - But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” 7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

C. Be confident.

  • Wait, how can I be humble and confident at the same time? Being humble means I am putting my trust in God and not myself.

  • I am confident because…

    • God’s presence 1 John 4:4 - …the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

    • God’s promise Romans 16:20 - The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. May the grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.

    • Because of your prayer’s Matthew 6:13 - Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from the evil one  

II. Know your Enemy

A. The World | The philosophy and influence that reigns on this earth.

  • The Bible uses the word “world” to refer to this planet but also to point to a “without God” philosophy of life. It is the idea of being worldly instead of godly.

1 John 2:16 - For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father but are from this world.

  • This world is not ideologically neutral. It is evil because of the sin of mankind.

  • The strategy over the world : To love the Lord

1 John 2:15 - Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you.

  • We fall for the worlds ideology because we love the things of the world.

  • We need a greater love. The deepest need in us is to love. That’s why we are all searching for someone who desires us.

B. The Flesh

Matthew 15:18-20 - But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.”

  • We still have a sin nature

Ephesians 4:21-24 - Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, 22 throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. 23 Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24 Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.

  • Praise God when he comes we will be resurrected with a new body and the old man of sin will stay in the ground!

  • The strategy over the flesh | To serve one another in love

Galatians 5:13 - For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love.

  • The sinful nature is completely narcissistic. Selfish. The secret is not trying to stop being selfish, it is to start serving others.

C. The Devil

  • We can take Satan too seriously / fall out of peace

  • We do not take him seriously enough / and be fooled by him and then dishonor the cross in which Christ conquered the devil on our behalf.

  • The strategy over the devil | Spiritual Armor

Ephesians 6:10-18 - A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. 12 For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. 14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. 16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.

  • 7 things: 1. Truth 2. Righteousness 3. Readiness to share Good News 4. Faith 5. Salvation 6. God’s Word 7. Prayer

  • Leave out any of these and it opens a way to be attacked.

III. Overcoming Evil in my daily life

Romans 12:21 - Don’t let evil conquer you but conquer evil by doing good.

A. Overcome Sin

John 8:34 - Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin.”

  • Sin seems to have a hold on all of us

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 - Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men 10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

  • How do we overcome sin? | REPENT / turn around. Step into your position as a freed son of God.

John 8:34-36 - Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave of sin. 35 A slave is not a permanent member of the family, but a son is part of the family forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free.

  • Confess, agree with God that what you have done is wrong. (1 Jn 1:9)

Acts 3:19 - Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord,

  • This time of refreshing, refreshing your spirit, When you repent you are refreshed.

B. Overcome Trials

  • We all face painful circumstances that are part of living in a fallen world.

  • The truth is God uses trials to grow us. To make us more like Him.

God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world. —C.S. Lewis

  • How do we overcome Trials? | Decide to REJOICE

James 1:2-4 - Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing

  • We don’t rejoice for trials, you rejoice that God is working in in trial to do 2 things. To develop maturity and enable ministry.

C. Overcome temptation

  • Think of it as a hunting and fishing context. We lure a fish out from the place he’s protected. We bate a hook and distract him from his safe place.

  • Something has to happen for it to be temptation. You see something, experience something, a distracting thought. These things lure us out.

  • Temptation is not sin. You cannot stop from being tempted.

You can’t stop the birds from flying over your head, but you can stop them from building a nest in your hair. —Martin Luther

  • Overcome temptation | by not just rejecting it but react to it.

Luke 22:46 - “Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation.”

  • If we say I’m going to quit thinking about that, we think about it.

  • Reject and react. Pray…

  • The best thing to do is worship. Don’t dwell on temptation because God promise a way of escape.

Summary

Evil exists. Our world wants to deny it exists. You as a child of God cannot be naïve about that. If we want to overcome evil in our lives, we need to set our mind on victory! Be alert, be humble and be confident. Know your enemy and have strategies against those things set against you, the world, the flesh, and the devil. We overcome evil in our lives by repenting of sin, rejoicing in trials, and rejecting and reacting to temptation.