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Can Satan ‘Devour’ True Christians?

At least, if you go on and on and on and on slipping away from the vigilance of faith and fighting sin and the devil, you have no reason to think you are saved. It doesn’t matter what you prayed long ago. It doesn’t matter what card you signed. It doesn’t matter in baptism. It doesn’t matter what your parents did. Salvation is real. It is real. It is real. It is a work of God in a human heart, and there are effects from it. And one of the effects is, when the lion comes, you fight.

There is a promise in this passage which is just staggering. It is in this passage. It is also way back in chapter 1. In 1 Peter 1:5, it says that Christians are “kept” (or, as the ESV says, “guarded”)—precious word: kept by the power of God “through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time”—through faith, through resisting the devil, firm in your faith. If you say, “I am kept, I am kept by the power of God,” and you don’t resist him, firm in your faith, you are contradicting God.

God says, “I am going to keep you by my power through your faith against the devil.” And you say, “I’ll take that, but I won’t believe.” It is like I go into a king’s hall, this great king in some enchanted empire, and he takes the ring off his finger and he puts the ring on my finger and he says, “Sir John, as long as you wear this ring, you will be invincible.” I say, “I will be invincible?” “You will be invincible.” “I will write that down. I will be invincible.” And I walk out. I take the ring off and I sell it, pocket the money and say, “I am invincible. He said. I got it written it here. You will be invincible.”

There is something wrong with that. There is something wrong with hearing God say, “You are kept by my power through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed,” and then say, “I am kept by his power. And if Satan comes, I don’t need to fight by faith, because I am safe.” That is like taking off your ring.

But God will not let the elect—born of God, called—take off their ring. The evidence that you are a child of God is that you keep the ring on. The badge of the children of God is battle. The badge of the children of God is battle against sin and the devil, not perfection. That badge, that crown, that comes later. But the fight, I will fight. I will not lay down my shield. I will not take off my ring. I will not rip off my badge. I am a believer. And he will keep me safe through the faith that he himself works in me.