“Lead me in the right path, O Lord, or my enemies will conquer me.Make your way plain for me to follow.” Psalm 5:8 NLT
The opening scripture is taken from Psalm 5:8. It’s a prayer of David and one that I believe we should all pray daily. A similar scripture can be found in Psalm 27:11:
“Teach me your way, Lord; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors.”
These verses are part of David’s earnest prayers to the Lord and in both, he asked the Lord to lead him aright so his enemies do not conquer him. It is clear that the prayers stem from an understanding that a departure from the ways of God will make a Christian vulnerable to be defeated by the enemy.
For centuries, faithful men and women of God have taught that all men should flee the sinful life and live holy unto the Lord. 2 Timothy 2:9 states:
“Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: … “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity.”
Inscribed with certainty in the foundations of God is an exhortation that all who call on the name of Christ MUST depart from iniquity. And when we fail to do this, we literarily veer away from the true foundation and we know from Psalm 11:3 that when our foundations are negatively affected, there is nothing the righteous can do.
Disobedience and sin gives the enemy an upper hand in our lives and leaves us open to be conquered. In the book of Judges, we see Israel’s cycle of sin, defeat and restoration. An example is in Judges 2:13-16:
“They forsook the Lord… And the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel. So He delivered them into the hands of plunderers who despoiled them; and He sold them into the hands of their enemies all around, so that they could no longer stand before their enemies. Wherever they went out, the hand of the Lord was against them for calamity, as the Lord had said, and as the Lord had sworn to them. And they were greatly distressed. Nevertheless, the Lord raised up judges who delivered them out of the hand of those who plundered them.”
Whenever we abandon God’s ways, we open the door for the enemy to afflict us (Ecclesiastes 10:8b). When we repent and return to His ways, we are restored. And while we rejoice in God’s promise to forgive and to cleanse us if we confess and repent of our sins, we must however guard against a life of continuous sin. A strong admonition against this is in Hebrews 10:26-29:
“If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think someone deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified them, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?”
We all want to live victorious and triumphant Christian lives. But we must understand that sin is a barrier to the victorious life we so long for. Knowing that sin can allow the enemy to conquer us should be a strong deterrent from sinning and a great encouragement to commit to living for the LORD.
Another related reason to walk in obedience is that mentioned in 2 Corinthians 10:4-6. Apostle Paul states:
“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.” NKJV
In other words, our capacity to effectively resist the enemy and victoriously bring all and every area of our lives in alignment with the will of God is dependent on our obedience. We are only able to punish all disobedience (rebellion) to God’s will in our lives when our obedience is complete.
Purity enables us carry the prevailing power of God. Obedience preserves us and denies the enemy the power to conquer us. This in no way denies the truth that we will be tempted and tried but it does assure us that when we refuse to compromise in doing what we know to be God’s will, the enemy will not prevail over us.
In Daniel 3 is an example of how obedience can keep us from being conquered. The 3 Hebrews boys chose to obey God and though sentenced to death and cast into the fire, God preserved them that they were not conquered – not even by the blazing furnace they were cast into.
Father, we commit our lives into Your hands, asking that by Your Spirit You will daily renew the grace on our lives to live for You, we pray that You will lead us and our families and our brethren across the globe in Your paths so that the enemy will not subdue or conquer us; we pray that You will cause us to live victorious and triumphant lives all to Your glory and honor in Jesus name.