Video by Kenneth Copeland Ministries

I was at my lowest point in life, feeling completely defeated. The enemy’s attacks had left me overwhelmed and powerless.

I had tried everything – praying, quoting Scripture – but nothing seemed to work.

“Resist the devil and he will flee from you,” I earnestly recited from James 4:7, willing with all my heart for it to be true.

Yet the torment continued and the devil persisted in his scheming against me.

Exhausted and discouraged, I opened my Bible once more and my eyes fell again on those now-familiar words.

However, this time, something new jumped out at me – the first part of the verse I had been overlooking…

Submit Yourself to God

Submit Yourself to God

The full verse in James 4:7 says:

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”

Our power to stand firm when the enemy attacks starts with submitting ourselves fully to God first.

This act of submission is an essential prerequisite that empowers your ability to resist and send the devil fleeing. Without intentional submission, your resistance won’t be as effective.

So what does it mean to submit yourself to God?

It certainly requires much more than just gaining head knowledge of Bible verses or trying to “behave” like a Christian outwardly.

True submission runs much deeper than that.

It means humbling yourself before God and surrendering your will completely to His will and His commands.

It will often require denying yourself and making hard choices to obey God even when it’s difficult or painful. But this level of willing obedience will bring you into an intimate relationship with Christ.

When you submit, you are saying along with Jesus in Luke 22:42 and meaning it with every fiber of your being:

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”

As you make this posture of submission your lifestyle, the devil loses ground.

Obedience Activates Your Authority

Obedience Activates Your Authority

Here’s something powerful to know: the authority you have as a believer over the devil is activated by your obedience to God.

In other words, your power to resist Satan is tied directly to your submission.

The more consistently you obey God in the small, daily choices you make, the more He will entrust greater spiritual authority to you.

Just as you wouldn’t hand your car keys to a twelve-year-old, God will not fully release His power into rebellious hands.

However, as you walk blamelessly in obedience, tremendous authority becomes available to you through Christ. That’s why submission in the small stuff matters so much.

For example, when God prompts you to have a difficult conversation or forgive someone who hurt you, yet you ignore His voice, the power of resistance you could have had diminishes.

But when you follow through in prompt obedience, your strength to stand firm in the face of future attacks increases.

Obedience draws you into a closer relationship with God, where the flow of His power can move unhindered.

Walking in intimacy with Christ is the source of your strength against the enemy’s strategies.

The Foundation of Submission

The Foundation of Submission

Trying to resist the devil without first submitting to God is like trying to build a house without laying the proper foundation.

It might work for a while, but the structure won’t withstand storms. For your “house” to be secure, you need a firm foundation of intimacy with Christ through submission.

Jesus modeled this perfectly for us. Out of His deep love relationship with the Father, He chose complete submission, even to the point of death.

Philippians 2:8 tells us:

“And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!”

Verse 9 goes on to say:

“Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name.”

Because Christ submitted fully, God enthroned Him above all powers and principalities!

You can have this same authority as you walk in obedience to the firm foundation of Christ.

So keep pressing in close to Jesus, allowing the Holy Spirit to search your heart and reveal any areas He may be calling you to submit more fully.

As you obey God’s Word and submit to His will the devil will flee from you. Resist him from the strength of your intimate relationship with the all-powerful King of kings!

Key Takeaways

  • Your power to resist the devil starts with submitting fully to God first.
  • True submission requires humbling yourself and surrendering your will in obedience.
  • Obedience activates the authority you have over the devil as a believer.
  • Submitting to God in the small daily choices strengthens your ability to resist.
  • An intimate relationship with Christ gained through submission is the foundation of your strength against the enemy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What if I feel too weak to resist the devil?

A. Remember that it’s not about resisting in your own strength!

Come to God and acknowledge your weakness and need for Him. Humbly submit yourself to the Lord and draw closer in your relationship with Him.

Ask for His power and protection to cover you. Stand firm on the foundation of Christ’s sacrifice, not your own ability.

Q. Why do I need to surrender so much of my will to God?

A. Because your will is tainted by worldly desires and fleshly impulses. You may want things that pull you away from God’s perfect plan for your life.

Surrendering your personal desires to Him cleanses your heart and brings freedom and victory. Dying to self opens the way for His spiritual power to take over.

Q. What if others don’t understand my choices to obey God?

A. Walking in obedience sometimes means difficult sacrifices that others question. But remember that submission is about honoring an audience of One – the Lord.

The approval and understanding of other people does not determine the value of following God’s call on your life.

Stand confidently in the knowledge that He will use your obedience to further His Kingdom.

Q. How can I grow in intimacy with Christ through submission?

A. Pursue the Lord in prayer and Bible study. Ask Him to search your heart and reveal areas you need to surrender.

Journal about what obedience looks like for you. Share vulnerably with other believers and ask for prayer.

Study Jesus’ example of submission. Act promptly when God speaks. Stay sensitive to His quiet guidance through the Holy Spirit.

Q. What does it mean to “submit yourselves therefore to God”?

A. Submitting yourself therefore to God means surrendering your will and desires to Him, acknowledging His authority over your life, and obeying His teachings and commandments.

It is an act of humility and trust in His wisdom and guidance.

Q. How can I purify my heart?

A. To purify your heart, you need to confess and repent of your sins, asking for God’s forgiveness.

Continually seeking His presence through prayer, studying scripture, and being dedicated to following His ways will also contribute to the purification of your heart.

Q. What is the significance of resisting the devil?

A. Resisting the devil means standing firm in your faith and refusing to succumb to his temptations and attacks.

By putting on the armor of God (Ephesians 6:12-18) and the strength He provides, you can overcome satan’s lies and schemes.

This resistance allows you to maintain a strong relationship with God and live according to His will.

Q. How can I draw near to God?

A. To draw near to God, you need to cultivate a deep communion with God through regular prayer, worship, and studying His Word.

By seeking His presence and desiring His will in all aspects of your life, you can develop a closer relationship with Him.

Q. What does it mean to be double-minded?

A. Being double-minded refers to having a divided loyalty or wavering in your commitment to God.

It involves holding conflicting beliefs, struggling to make decisions, and being easily influenced by the world.

The Bible encourages us to be single-minded, and wholly devoted to God and His ways.

Q. How can I resist temptation?

A. To resist temptation, you should rely on the full armor of God (Ephesians 6:12-18) which includes truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith, salvation, and the Word of God.

Staying vigilant, seeking support from other believers, and relying on the strength and guidance of the Holy Spirit will also help you overcome temptation.

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