The Devil on the Leash

The devil is a cunning, crafty creature. He knows much about our life. He watches us day by day. Sometimes he does not merely watch, but is very busy. He has many tools with which he may pry into our lives. He’s not stupid, ignorant, or careless. The very opposite is true. He does not reveal himself as some weird creature, causing us to recoil in fright. Oh no, he is too smart for that. He wants to be our friend. He wants us to believe that he is helping us. He wants to give us a “thrill” in life. Always he seeks to make himself appealing, his presence always appreciated.

Do you walk with the devil on the leash? You perhaps are puzzled with such a question. Walk with the devil on the leash? How is that possible?

Let me explain. As born again young people, we do not desire to entertain the devil. We do not enclose him in our bosom and seek his fellowship. We do not give ourselves over to his dictates, so that we leave the church, go every night to places of ill fame, make friends with people of evil repute. We do not throw aside all our Christian training and discipline. No, we want to be Christians. We want to walk in the shadow of our Savior. Our joy is in the promised salvation in Christ. We love the church and all its’ many activities. We have our conversation in heaven

Yet, if we are very honest with ourselves and take a closer examination of our lives, do we really treat the devil as we ought? Scripture tells us, “Resist the devil and he will flee from thee”. James 4:7. Do we always do that? Are we always faithful in resisting him?

To be perfectly faithful to this text would mean that we are completely delivered from sin. That we all confess, we are not. Yet, the question remains, do we always strive with all our power to resist him? Do we really try?

In answer to that question, we must admit that all too often we walk with the devil on the leash. Oh, we don’t want to walk with him in our arms. We don’t want to embrace him whole-heartedly. Neither do we want to resist him, so that he flees away and leaves us alone. Our sinful nature and evil desires like to court with him on the pathway of life, let him have a little to say, and take him for a stroll on the avenues of our experience. Is that not true?

But how? There are various ways. The devil knows our weaknesses, he will appeal to them. What do we read? Is it always pure? Every sort of literature – books or magazines? The devil has much power in this field. He is always ready to go for a walk – if we only lend an ear. Do we snap the leash?

We all have many friends. Everyone does. Are they true friends? This includes your dates as well. With whom do you date and what do you do? Be careful, the devil likes dates loaded with dynamite. Society season is upon us. As children of the covenant, God gives us this wonderful opportunity to fellowship with godly friends. Use it, young people, with all your power and enthusiasm. It will strengthen you against the power of the devil.

So we could go on, cheating in school, the off-color joke, the lie that is told, the person we kill with the tongue, the evil thought, the suggestive gesture, etc.

The devil is not a gentle pup, rather he is a roaring lion. Take him for a walk, and he will take us for a run. Give him a finger, he will devour our whole body.

Let us be on our guard. Sin and the devil appeal to our flesh. The old man of sin loves it. Fight it! Turn away from it. By the power of God’s grace, don’t leash the devil, don’t court with him, but resist him and the farther he will flee, the safer we will be. Our victory is through the power of faith. May God five us grace to exercise it.

Originally Published in:

Vol. 19 No. 7 October-November 1959