A Strong Man Armed, and a Stronger Than He

"When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome, him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils." - Luke 11:21-22

Next to his friends and allies, a soldier ought to be acquainted with his enemies. We ought not to be ignorant of Satan. Our Lord draws a picture of his power.

Christ speaks of Satan as a 'strong man.' The strength of Satan has been only too well proved by his victories over the souls of men. He who tempted Adam and Eve to rebel against God and brought sin into the world, he who has led captive the vast majority of mankind and robbed them of heaven - that evil one is indeed a mighty foe. He who is called the prince of this world is not to be despised (John 14:30). He is very strong.

Christ speaks of Satan as a 'strong, armed man.' Satan is well supplied with defensive armor. He is not to be overcome with slight assaults and feeble exertions. He that would overcome him must put forth all his strength. Satan is also well supplied with offensive weapons. He is never at a loss for a means to injure the soul of man. He has snares of every kind, rank and description. He knows exactly how every rank,

class, age, nation and people can be assailed with most advantage. The devil is well armed.

Christ speaks of man's heart as being Satan's 'palace.' The natural heart is the favorite abode of the evil one and all its faculties and power are his servants to do his will. He sits upon the throne which God ought to occupy and governs the inward man. He works in the disobedient (Ephesians 2:2).

Christ speaks of Satan's possessions as safe. A man dead in sin is at ease about spiritual things and does not fear the future. He has no anxiety about hell. He has a devil-given thoughtlessness and insensibility about his soul. Let us no more jest about the devil than about the executioner at the gallows.

Thank God, Christ is stronger than Satan. Jesus overcame him on the cross, plucks his captives from his hands, and breaks the chains with which he binds them. Are you delivered?
-J.C. Ryle