Daily Bible Reading Reflections

Don’t Give the One Who’s Looking for “an Opportune Time” an Opportunity

Today’s Bible reading is Job 11 and Luke 4.

And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness for forty days, being tempted by the devil. (Luke 4:1-2)

Jesus withstood these temptations, repeatedly returning to “It is written.”

And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time. (Luke 4:13)

The devil departed, but only until another opportunity arose.

Years later, Christians would be encouraged by the apostle Peter:

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1 Pet 5:8)

The devil continues to prowl, looking for an opportune time.

The apostle Paul calls for all to be on the alert, humbly aware of our personal vulnerabilities:

Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil. (Eph 4:26-27)

What an important warning that I need to keep at the forefront of my mind:

  • When I pick up my smartphone…
  • As I move my wrist to click an Internet link…
  • As I think about what to Google…
  • When I’m itching to weigh in on social media…
  • When I don’t get my way…
  • When I’m angry…
  • As I’m looking for a diversion from my frustrations…
  • When I feel a pull in the direction of bitterness…
  • As I’m packing my bags to head out of town…
  • When I’m tempted to cheat…
  • When it would be advantageous to lie…
  • When the darkness is offering a place to hide…

…my Father in heaven has warned me: give no opportunity to the one who’s seeking “an opportune time” to devour you.

I can’t keep the lion from prowling, but I can refuse to give him an opportunity. My Lord withstood the temptations of this adversary. Today, he’s calling me to be strong in the strength of his might.

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