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Psalm 35 is a prayer that King David prayed against his enemies, who were attempting to kill him. In my next blog articles, I will be writing about three enemies that seek to kill every person.
Our enemies are: the world’s system, our own human instinct to live separate from God’s direction, and the devil.
Today’s article is focused on the devil. We will learn a few facts about this enemy and discover how to pray verses from Psalm 35 for God’s protection from demons and the devil.
The Devil’s Deception
The very first temptation and sin pictures a major scheme of your enemy, the devil. Adam and Eve were sinless, but the devil came to them in the form of a snake.
The Book of Genesis puts it like this, “Now the snake was the most cunning animal that the Lord God had made. The snake asked the woman, ‘Did God really tell you not to eat fruit from any tree in the garden?'” (Genesis 3.1).
Every temptation begins by questioning God’s word. In many ways our enemy tempts us to disobedience with the words, “Did God really tell you?”
Behind every disobedient and life-destroying choice is a belief that God can’t be trusted and that we are better off by not following his direction.
The “Big Three” Temptations
The devil tempted Jesus at the beginning of his ministry. The three temptations that he gave to Jesus are typical of the temptations we all face.
(1) Temptation #1 – Use your power for yourself. Jesus had all power and authority at his disposal (Matthew 28.19). The devil tempted him to use his power to satisfy his hunger, instead of living by the direction of the Heavenly Father.
He said, “If you are God’s Son, order these stones to turn into bread” (Matthew 4.3).
Think about the number of times when we are tempted to use our power, our resources, our personality, and all of the gifts that God has given us to serve ourselves.
(2) Temptation #2 – Tempt God to rescue you when we defy his clear guidance.
From the very top of the Temple the devil said, “If you are God’s Son, throw yourself down, for the scripture says,
‘God will give orders to his angels about you;
they will hold you up with their hands,
so that not even your feet will be hurt on the stones.’” (Matthew 4.6)
I fill my stomach with wrong foods and don’t exercise enough. However, if I develop a heart condition, I will certainly be asking for a miracle of God’s healing.
That’s one among many of the ways that we can fall subject to temptation #2.
(3) Temptation #3 – Make disobedient compromises to achieve power and greatness.
Matthew records this encounter as follows: “Then the Devil took Jesus to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in all their greatness. ‘All this I will give you,’ the Devil said, ‘if you kneel down and worship me'” (Matthew 4.8-9).
Power, acceptance, notoriety, greatness, fame and the like are extremely strong desires. The devil doesn’t come to us with horns and a pitchfork when he presents this temptation. He may come in a suit or an adoring crowd or a new car or house.
The devil is more subtle than to ask us to kneel before him. He just wants us to compromise our principles. He tells us that the ends justify the means and that we won’t actually become like the means we use.
Prayer for Victory
Jesus ended the model prayer and taught us to pray for deliverance from the evil one. He said, “Do not bring us to hard testing, but keep us safe from the Evil One” (Matthew 6.13).
Psalm 35 gives us a framework to pray for God’s protection against the seductive aspects of the devil. As we put the words of this Psalm into our own words, God will hear our prayers for victory.
Consider these verses, as you pray for God to defeat the work of the devil in your life. Below each verse is a suggested prayer.
Verse 1 – Oppose those who oppose me, Lord,
and fight those who fight against me!
Dear God, please fight against any demon or spiritual power that is fighting against me.
Verse 4 – May those who try to kill me
be defeated and disgraced!
May those who plot against me
be turned back and confused!
Dear God, help me be aware of the plots of the enemy to defeat or disgrace me. Turn them back.
Verses 7-8 – Without any reason they laid a trap for me
and dug a deep hole to catch me.
8 But destruction will catch them before they know it;
they will be caught in their own trap
and fall to their destruction!
Dear God, the enemy of my soul wants to kill, steal and destroy my life. Catch him in his own trap and bring about his end.
Praise in Victory
We are no match for the devil. In comparison to the devil, we are weak and he is strong.
However, the devil cannot match the power of God at all. As we live in an obedient relationship with Jesus, he will protect us and deliver us from the schemes of our enemy.
We can use the words of verses 9-10 to praise God for his victory in our lives.
Then I will be glad because of the Lord;
I will be happy because he saved me.
With all my heart I will say to the Lord,
“There is no one like you.
You protect the weak from the strong,
the poor from the oppressor.” (Psalm 35.9-10)
Suggested prayer: Dear God, there is no one like you. I am glad that you have revealed the schemes of the enemy in my life. You have protected me from this strong and deceptive adversary. With all my heart I praise you.
May We Pray for You
Maywood Baptist Church has a prayer team who is honored to pray for you. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or private message me on Facebook. I will pray for you and ask the prayer team to pray, too.