“Then the LORD asked Satan, “Have you noticed my servant Job? He is the finest man in all the earth. He is blameless-a man of complete integrity. He fears God and stays away from evil.” Job 1:8 NLT
If you are a person of integrity like Job you too shun evil. But that does not mean you won’t be confronted by it. If you are a believer in God evil notices you, desires you, and finds you. Evil constantly lays traps for you hoping you will take the bait and get ensnared. Evil wants to destroy you and your relationship with God. Let’s get some encouragement on how to fight back and keep on shunning evil.
THE FLESH IS WEAK
“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Mark 14:38 NIV
Jesus; the author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2), says we must, “Watch and pray,” so as not to be engulfed by temptation. The meaning of the word, “Watch,” here means to give strict attention to, to be cautious, active, to keep awake. So we must keep strict watch of ourselves when it comes to temptations. But that’s not all. Jesus also said we must pray. All the diligence in the world won’t help us if we don’t pray regarding temptation. Jesus tells us why: “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (Mark 14:38 NIV) The Holy Spirit is powerful enough to handle any and all temptations. But our flesh is miserably weak. One of the first steps to overcoming evil is realizing this fact; acknowledging how weak we are, and how much we need God’s help. Pray earnestly as Jesus said not to fall into temptation.
REAL LIFE SCENARIO
Let’s look at a real life scenario of shunning evil. Our brother enjoys going to a particular restaurant on his off day to unwind. There he studies and meditates on God’s word using his Bible apps on his cell phone. The atmosphere there is quiet and conducive to this. It is not long before Satan comes in the form of a female who pretends to be a believer like our brother. They talk about the scriptures, and seem to be having a good time encouraging one another. They meet at this restaurant a few times and discuss the word of God. Then our supposed sister suddenly makes her move. She uses the old damsel in distress routine to see just how much our brother is into her. She hints that she’s having financial trouble. Our brother doesn’t pay much attention to this because frankly it sounds just like the old damsel in distress routine. Later the same day the sister calls our brother on the phone and tries to force him to give her some money. Her tone is completely different from when they were discussing the scriptures. She keeps asking him for the money. She then tells our brother in a stern, angry voice that if she doesn’t get the money her phone will be turned off that same day (they won’t be able to talk). After she realizes he’s not going to give it to her she hangs up. This is someone our brother met only a week ago and had a few Bible discussions with at a restaurant. What made her feel she was entitled to his money? Our brother couldn’t stop thanking God and rejoicing after the lady hung up the phone because God had answered his prayer by revealing to him who this person really was. This was not the Christian she pretended to be. This was one of Satan’s drama queens sent on a mission to take down our brother.
You think the Devil stopped there? Of course not. The next morning the woman kept texting and calling our brother to meet her at the restaurant for a cup of coffee (this time her treat of course hah hah) as if nothing ever happened. But wait, I thought her phone was supposed to be turned off by now? I guess she got the money from somewhere else, or she was just lying in the first place to get some money. Anyways our brother ignored her texts, calls, and voicemails. Why? Because the scriptures say:
“But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who CLAIMS TO BE A BROTHER OR SISTER but is sexually immoral or GREEDY, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or SWINDLER. DO NOT EVEN EAT WITH SUCH PEOPLE. What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.” 1 Corinthians 5:11-13 NIV
The Bible also says to shun those who:
“THEY WILL ACT RELIGIOUS, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. STAY AWAY FROM PEOPLE LIKE THAT” 2 Timothy 3:5 NLT
KEEP SHUNNING EVIL
About a week later our brother was in his restaurant spot meditating on the word of God when that same woman pulled up in her car. As she was about to come in our brother was making an exit through another door, avoiding her altogether. Some would say, “That’s stupid, he’s in a public place, he paid his money, he has a right to be there just as much as she does.” But our brother would say that he decided to SHUN EVIL. He would say he knows from past experiences the drama this type of person is capable of causing. Hence he chose to avoid it. Our brother enjoys his peace much more than demanding his rights. He believes he was obeying God by leaving the restaurant when that woman arrived. And that he was protected from who knows what kind of drama she may have caused.
“Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil.” Proverbs 3:7 NIV
SHUN CERTAIN PEOPLE
The Bible is filled with scriptures telling us to avoid certain kinds of people. Here’s a couple:
“Make no friendship with an angry man [woman]; and with a furious man thou shalt not go: Lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul.” Proverbs 22:24-25 KJV
“I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people.” Romans 16:17-18 NIV
You are obeying God when you shun evil, and that includes evil people who are out to harm you. Some people love drama, they run to it. But the wise hate mess and run away from it.
Our brother decided to stop going to that restaurant, yes, all because of that woman. That’s his choice. He strongly believes he knows what kind of person this is and the potential danger she poses. When God says shun evil, shun it. Don’t arrogantly try to battle evil in your own strength demanding your rights. You will lose. Sometimes the battle plan of God is to walk away from a situation, even RUN AWAY from it! Here’s one:
“RUN FROM sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body.” 1 Corinthians 6:18 NLT
Running away doesn’t always make you a coward.
Remember, though you may be a person of integrity like Job which means you shun evil, that doesn’t mean evil won’t find you. But when it does pray, and always be on the watch. The Holy Spirit is very willing to help us where we are weak, and to keep shunning evil.
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