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Avenues of Influence

Updated: Dec 21, 2020

The world is all the richer for having a devil in it, so long as we keep our foot upon his neck (William James)

If we have victory over the Prince of Darkness through Christ, then why do we indulge ourselves in that which is not right or moral? Daniel Defoe offers his thought, “The devil’s laws are easy, and his gentle sway makes it exceedingly pleasant to obey.” God does not rid us of all inclinations toward wrongdoing the moment we believe. We must break the old patterns of behavior and close the avenues of influence to which we are vulnerable. Death to sin and self is a process much like that which happens when the root of a tree is severed. When the root system is destroyed the tree dies. It often takes some time before a difference is noticed, but eventually the tree withers. When the Holy Spirit takes up residence in our bodies the root system nurturing our sin nature is destroyed and a process of death begins.

“The enemy will not see you vanish into God’s company without an effort to reclaim you” (C.S. Lewis). Principalities and powers entice us through our weaknesses and will travel any road left open to them. It is imperative that we barricade the thoroughfares of our hearts by submitting ourselves to the Lord. “Fellowship with God is something one dare not cover for it smothers to death. It is like a tender infant or a delicate little plant, for long nurturing is the price of having it, while it vanishes in a second of time, the very moment … that we try to seat some other unworthy affection beside Him” (Frank Laubach).

When we walk with the Lord demons no longer have free access to our will. Then why do some believers wrestle with issues and continually seek prayer for deliverance? In most instances it is because they have not crucified the flesh. Many are seeking a prayer, an instant answer, or some effortless way to conquer carnal desires. There is no easy way to overcome human weakness! You cannot cast out the desires of the flesh—you must crucify them. It is easy to be a Christian but it is hard to die. The Apostle Paul declared, “I die daily.” There is no Biblical instance of a believer praying for another believer to be delivered from demons. So how do we deal with our propensity towards wrongdoing? Fellowship with God and close every road, those avenues of influence through which we find ourselves yielding to sin.

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