The Lion's Roar

Bible Book: 1 Peter  5 : 8-11
Subject: Satan; Jesus, The Lion; Jesus, Victory In

F.R. Malty once said, "Jesus promised His disciples three things; namely, that they would be: (a) completely fearless; (b) in constant trouble; and (c) absurdly happy." 1

Every believer has three enemies - the world system, the flesh, and the Devil. The first has been described as "the external foe" or the spirit of the age; the second has been designated as "the internal foe"; and the third enemy, the Devil, also known as Satan or Lucifer is "the infernal foe". Peter's focus in these verses is on our conflict with the Devil. Southern Baptist revivalist, Vance Havner (1901-1986) writes, "The Adversary is not in the first two chapters of the Bible, nor is he in the last two." 2

I. A State Of Readiness (v. 8)

Dr. Stephen F. Olford (1918-2004) frequently mentioned "R.F.A.", which stands for "Ready For Anything". As believers we must remain in a state of readiness.

Peter exhorts us to "be sober" or self-controlled. We can see this was not always the case for Peter as he shares his testimony in 1 Peter 4:3-4: "For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles-when we walked in lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you."

Paul's writes in Ephesians 5:18: "And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit."

Peter also encourages us to "be vigilant" or watchful and alert. It has been wisely said, "The price of liberty is eternal vigilance." Peter reminds us about "[our] adversary the devil" (see: Zechariah 3:1 and Revelation 12:10). We also read that Satan "walks about like a roaring lion" (1 Peter 5:8). This  phrase is found in the following passages: (Psalm 22:13, Proverbs 19:12, Proverbs 20:2, Proverbs 28:15, Isaiah 5:29, and Ezekiel 22:25).

From the book of Job we learn what is happening behind the scenes: "Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. And the Lord said to Satan, 'From where do you come?' So Satan answered the Lord and said, "From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it" (Job 1:6-7).

Peter continues to write that the devil is "seeking whom he may devour" (1 Peter 5:8). In a similar way a predator or prowler is just looking for a house to burglarize. Some foolishly fail to trim the bushes, turn on the outside lights around their house and leave their door open. Criminals are looking for vulnerability of their potential victims.

II. A Stance Of Resistance (v. 9)

Peter calls us to "Resist [the Devil], steadfast in the faith" (v. 9a).

The classic passage dealing with spiritual warfare is found in Ephesians 6:10-20, which says, "Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints- and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak."

In Hebrews 12:4 we read about ". . .striving against sin" and in 1 Peter 5:9 we read about striving against Satan. James exhorts, "Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from

you" (James 4:7). The seven sons of Sceva attempted to resist the devil without submitting to God in faith (Acts 19:11-20) and were shamefully unsuccessful. Faith is the key to resisting the Devil. The Bible tells us: "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1) and we read in Romans 10:17: "So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God."

During His temptation in the wilderness, Jesus boldly, believingly declared to the devil, "It is written, it is written, it is written" (Matthew 4:4,7,10). Notice that Jesus was quoting from the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy.

Peter also reminds us about the fellowship of suffering when he writes: "knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world" (1 Peter 5:9b). Although some times we are called upon to stand alone as Elijah, the prophet of God, stood before the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel or Athanasius of Alexandria, who stood against the world, we must realize that we are part of a fellowship. The model prayer recorded in Matthew 6 we do not find "I, me, or my" but "us".

Jesus said, "In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, / Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done / On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, / As we forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, / But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever Amen" (Matthew 6:9- 13).

III. A Statement Of Resolution (vv. 10-11)

It is like Peter is saying, "Therefore, be it resolved. . ."

A. A Resolution About The Grace of God

First, he makes a resolution about the grace of God in verse 10a. There are two errors about salvation: first there are those who trust in works for salvation, refuted by Paul in Ephesians 2:4-10; and those who believe they are saved by grace and kept by works, refuted by Paul in the book of Galatians. We are saved by grace, we are kept by grace, and we need God's grace each day. In the words of the famous hymn, "Amazing Grace" by John Newton, "Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; 'Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, / And Grace will lead me home."

Peter continues, "after you have suffered a while" (v. 10b). Some would tell us that God never wants His children to experience sickness and suffering. Job (Job 1:8-12), Trophimus (2 Timothy 4:12) and the apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 12:7) are just a few examples of strong believers that suffered physically. The writer to the Hebrews reports: "And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets: who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again. Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. Still others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented- of whom  the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us" (Hebrews 11:32-40).

Peter reminds us of the purpose of suffering as a believer. It is to "perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you" (v. 10c). The perspective of a person who has suffered rejection, ostracism and isolation from unbelievers is much more eternal than those who have not felt the displeasure of the world against them.

B. A Resolution About The Glory Of God

Peter also makes a resolution about the glory of God in verse 11.

May we say with the psalmist: "Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, / But to Your name give glory, / Because of Your mercy, / Because of Your truth" (Psalm 115:1).


Martin Luther was right when he wrote:

"A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing; Our helper He, amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing: For still our ancient foe doth seek to work us woe;

His craft and power are great, and, armed with cruel hate, On earth is not his equal.

"Did we in our own strength confide, our striving would be losing; Were not the right Man on our side, the Man of God's own choosing: Dost ask who that may be? Christ Jesus, it is He;

Lord Sabaoth, His Name, from age to age the same, And He must win the battle.

"And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us, We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us:

The Prince of Darkness grim, we tremble not for him; His rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure, One little word shall fell him.

"That word above all earthly powers, no thanks to them, abideth; The Spirit and the gifts are ours through Him Who with us sideth: Let goods and kindred go, this mortal life also;

The body they may kill: God's truth abideth still, His kingdom is forever." 3

Satan is an imitator and an impostor. He declared his intentions in his "I will" speech recorded in Isaiah 14:12-15. He is a master of disguise. Satan "walks about like a roaring lion," but Bernard of Clairvoux writes, "Lion or Worm? 'Infidels fear the devil as a lion, but those who are strong in the faith despise him as a very little worm." John reminds us in his first epistle: "He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world" (1 John 4:4b).

In C.S. Lewis's famous Christian allegory, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the children discovered that they could go through the back of the old wardrobe and travel into another dimension of time and space, to the land of Narnia; the witch represents Satan, and Aslan, the lion, represents Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

Jesus Christ, "the Lion of the tribe of Judah" (Revelation 5:5), roared when he replied three times to the Devil at the time of His temptation in the wilderness, "It is written" (Matthew 4:4,7,10). Later, from the cross, we hear Jesus, the Lion, roar, when He declares, "it is finished" (John 19:30) after He paid the price for our sin. John prophesies that Jesus, the Lion, will roar, "it is done" (Revelation 21:6).

This final roar signals the end of time as we know it and as believers in the Lord Jesus Christ we joyfully anticipate the Lion's roar.


I. D.E Thomas, A Word From the Wise: Solomon Speaks On Today's Issues (Chicago: Moody Press, 1978), p. 69.
2. Vance Havner, Day by Day (Old Tappan: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1953), p. 249.
Martin Luther, "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God" (1529)

3. Available from: Accessed: 09/27/07 By Dr. Franklin L. Kirksey, pastor First Baptist Church of Spanish Fort 30775 Jay Drive Spanish Fort, Alabama 36527 Author of Sound Biblical Preaching: Giving the Bible a Voice

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