Have you ever heard the saying, “The devil made me do it….”?  It’s often an excuse people use when they do what they know they shouldn’t.  But in reality, it’s a pretty lame excuse, for the devil cannot make you do anything unless you let him persuade you.  It is written in James 4:7, Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 
    God gives us a three-step instruction how to live a life of victory over the devil, and you would have to work at it to misunderstand it, for it is clear and concise.  Step one is to submit yourself therefore to God.  That’s pretty clear, isn’t it?  Yet, many want to skip over that first and most important step, and go right to the next.  That’s like packing to go on a trip in your car, and not filling the fuel tank.  You can plan and hope, but you’re not going anywhere.  Without a CURRENT and living relationship with God, you are up the proverbial creek without a paddle, in that you may know who HE is,  but when you call, He doesn’t know YOU.  Liken that to knowing who a particular movie star is, but do they ever call YOU?  That’s the point: you knowing God, and God knowing you.
    If you’re submitted to God, you’re saying unto Him, Lord, YOUR will be done in my life, not mine.  I’ll do YOUR pleasure, I’ll serve YOU, every day of my life.  I’m YOURS, Lord, do with me as You will.  What happens when you do that?  God takes responsibility for what happens to you.  He sends His angels to watch over you, to keep you in all your ways, and they will bear you up in their hands, lest you dash your foot against a stone.  Yes, it really says that in Psalm 91, go read it for yourself.  I don’t know about you, but that is pretty exciting news, seeing how I hate stubbing my toes. 
    Before I go any further, I already know there’s someone out there saying, Well, I submitted my life to God years ago, and yet bad stuff still happens to me.  Let me explain something, there are those who submitted themselves unto God when they were thirteen years old, but haven’t spoke to Him since.  Remember what I said about a CURRENT and living relationship?  Any relationship requires nurturing if it is to grow and thrive.  Just as raising a child means you have to FEED it, your Spirit man must be fed daily to thrive, and a once-a-week or once-a-month drive by the local church isn’t going to get it.  If you’re a married person, tell me, did you get married and just go off to live by yourself somewhere without your mate?  If you did, you likely don’t have much of a relationship with that person anymore.  Think of you and God being married, and the Honeymoon never ending for all eternity.  Imagine drifting off to sleep each night thinking about how much you love God, and waking up in the morning thinking about how much God loves you. There are benefits of having a living relationship with God.
    Among those many benefits, we find God grants us authority over certain things.  We are given authority to prevent the devil from carrying out his plans of evil in our lives.  In Luke 10:19, the Lord Jesus told His disciples, which by the way, extends unto His modern-day disciples, namely YOU, if you are His, Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.  Did you grasp the awesome extent of authority and protection you have been granted?  That means you have a choice.  You don’t have to let the devil have his way with you, killing, stealing, destroying everything in your life.  You can stop him cold in his tracks.  Here’s how.  Having submitted yourself unto God, you take the next step:  RESIST THE DEVIL.  That doesn’t mean you get passive and let him do his thing.  It means you stand your ground and demand he cease what he is doing against you, your family, and those you are in earthly authority over.
    People have told me, I tried resisting the devil, but that didn’t help.  Oh, is that right?  Then I guess God must be a liar.  Here’s a clue:  God is NOT a liar.  Check your “SUBMIT” meter.  Is it running low?  Check and adjust your level of SUBMIT as necessary.  Now, we will say you know YOU ARE HEALED BY THE STRIPES OF JESUS.  The devil will come saying, Oh, think so?  We will just see about that.  About that time, the devil will put some kind of symptoms on your body, to see what you will do.  If you are like most, you will say, Gee, the Bible says I’m healed by the stripes of Jesus, but maybe that doesn’t always work.  Well, you blew it, because you submitted to the devil instead of to God, calling God a liar, and calling the devil’s lies, the truth.  Bad move.  That’s one to avoid at all costs.  Moving right along….you don’t TRY resisting the devil….you DO IT!!!  And…….??
    And, the Bible says, HE WILL FLEE FROM YOU.  Who will flee from you?  The devil!  Why would he flee from you?  Because, as a child of God, you are under authority from God, and the devil is no match for you.  He is much more afraid of you, than you need be of him!  As a child of God, submitted unto God, you are extremely dangerous to the kingdom of darkness, and he will avoid many confrontations with you, for he will always lose every battle against you…as well as the war; that is, if you submit yourself to God, and resist the devil.  How can you win every battle with the devil?  Because the power of God will defend you, for you are a child of the Most High.  And God has never lost a battle in all eternity, and He isn’t going to start now.
    So remember those three simple steps the next time the devil comes giving you trouble.  Don’t try doing them out of order, for it won’t work.  Submit yourselves therefore unto God, RESIST THE DEVIL, and he will flee from you.  Isn’t it wonderful? God makes it so simple, even a child can understand.