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 The Devil Has His Limitations

"We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the one who is born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one does not touch him." - 1 John 5:18

There is a lot to think about in this little verse. I want to point out the last phrase only. I don't pretend to know all about the "evil one" and the spiritual world that surrounds us, but I do want to comment on this verse.

I acknowledge that this is just one verse of many concerning the devil. We do need to study the whole Bible to get the complete picture. Yet this verse does have something specific to say to us. The point that John makes here is that the evil one "cannot touch" the person who is born of God.

There are three key groups of words in John's sentence; "the evil one", "does not touch", and, "born of God".

We know that the "evil one" is indeed the devil who has a heavenly host of angels with him in his pursuits.

The Greek word for "touch" means, "to fasten to". To me the thought is simple. The devil cannot fasten, hold onto, or attach himself to a person "born of God".

That leads us to the last group of words; "born of God". My understanding of this phrase is that someone who is born of God has been born again by receiving the Holy Spirit into his life. It is for this reason that the devil cannot live within, or be attached to a born again Christian. God and the devil cannot reside in the same human body.

1 Peter 5:8 says that "the devil walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour".  This statement says that Satan is not omnipresent . He is not in all places at all times.  He has "to walk about"  This verse also says that the devil may be around us trying to influence us to do evil, yet John says he cannot touch us even under these circumstances.

The lesson to be learned here is that the devil has his limitations when it comes to Christians.   He does not have power over us unless we give it to him, or unless the Lord allows it.  Even if the Lord does allow such a thing, Satan cannot attach himself to us.   Does this shed some light on the devils abilities?  This should give us all more confidence.    


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