Deliver Us From Evil

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"Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, make the most of your time, because the days are evil. So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is." (Ephesians 5:15-17).

You may wonder why evil is so hard to recognize. If it were easy, we could all avoid pitfalls and traps laid by the wicked and those that are trying to take advantage of unsuspecting people. Everyday we hear about girls who fall into the traps of evil men, some over the Internet who have no clue that these men are out to do them harm. We also read about young men who are arrested because they were encouraged to do something wrong to prove themselves. We even see people in authority, pastors, teachers, priest, managers, physicians who are arrested when their evil actions come to light.

The period of a person's life from about the age of 15 to about the age of 25 or 30, is a very vulnerable time in which mistakes can be made that are life changing. The teen years are a time when children are pushing away from their parents and parents are beginning to give their children more responsibility in preparation for them leaving the nest. The early twenties are a time when many children are embarking on their pursuits and making their own decisions. It is during this period that evil most often strikes.

Proverbs 1:8,10,15 are some of the verses warning young people to avoid evil. "Hear, my son, your father's instruction, And do not forsake your mother's teaching; My son, if sinners entice you Do not consent; My son, do not walk in the way with them. Keep your feet from their path."

Proverbs 27 - Teaches us today?

Proverbs 27:12 "(12) A prudent man sees evil and hides himself, The naïve proceed and pay the penalty"

Psalm 55:19-21 (Theme: Oppressed And Betrayed - But God Supports). "(19) God will hear and answer them-Even the one who sits enthroned from of old-With whom there is no change, And who do not fear God. (20) He has put forth his hands against those who were at peace with him; He has violated his covenant. (21) His speech was smoother than butter, But his heart was war; His words were softer than oil, Yet hey were drawn swords."

Today's question. How do you avoid evil?

Jesus gave us a clue when in Matthew 11:11 he talked about the greatness of John the Baptist. "Truly, I say to you among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he."

John the Baptist's life was prophesized 400 years before Jesus in Malachi 3:1. "Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming, says the Lord of hosts." Followed by the last verse in the Old Testament; "And he will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse." (Malachi 4:6).

John the Baptist prepared the people to be spiritually alert and to repent of their sins. By doing so and accepting the Messiah, they have the opportunity to have an entirely new and different relationship with God through the birth of their personal spirits and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

We avoid evil by being attentive to the Holy Spirit. This is done through improved spiritual discernment as you study God's word and with the help of more mature Christians who have the gift of prophecy (discernment).

When you see evil or even think you have come near it, hide from it by following a different path. If you are not quite sure, stop long enough to discuss it with another Christian who can offer discernment. Do not do things alone. This is what the evil one wants. To isolate you from people who can give good advice. Take hold of your ego and pride. Pray.

Dear God, deliver us from evil. Amen.

The Newness Of Life Daily Bible Message is designed for those who like to take a short respite from the day's responsibilities to enjoy the contemplation of God's word. This daily message is based primarily upon the belief that to read some of Proverbs and some of Psalm everyday will provide us with great spiritual growth and development when done consistently with discipline.  Phillip Saxton and contibute to Newness Of Life Ministries (NOL) Phillip Saxton, www.NewnessOfLife.com. Phillip can be reached at saxton AT MiTowne dot com

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