Satan Wants Your Kidsby Rusty Miller
"Your adversary, the devil, prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8).
Satan wants your kids.
There are two reasons Satan wants them: First, as evidenced by the passage above, Satan wants to destroy the lives of anyone he can attack, and kids, being generally more vulnerable than adults, especially Christian adults, are a prime target of his scheming. Second, he believes if he gets your kids, it will be easier for him to get you (for evidence, see Job 1:18-19), and he wants you, too.
Satan's ultimate goal is to defeat God and his people, and though we know that this is a battle he cannot win (1 Cor. 15, Heb. 2, Rev. 20, etc.), that does not stop his attempts, and it does not exempt us from his efforts.
Fortunately, we are not left defenseless against such a powerful adversary. In Peter's metaphor above, we see Satan as a lion, certainly not a foe to be taken lightly, but we have examples in the Old Testament of God's servants being able to defeat lions (Samson, Jud. 14:5-9; David, 1 Sam. 17:34-36), so we can take comfort in God's ability to protect His own from this great an opponent.
However, "Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places" (Gal. 6:12). We cannot doubt the strength of our adversary and his armies. Clearly, we are going to have to recognize his power, so that we can learn to depend on the One who is more powerful. We must also be prepared to meet Satan's attacks on all fronts, including those against our children.
This latest outbreak of violence against kids is but another effort by Satan to destroy the lives of families. Families broken down by grief, or families corraled by fear are more susceptible to questioning God and His protections. If Satan can convince people that God is powerless, he wins the souls of those people, and if he can convince those with a broad influence (television reporters, teachers, etc.), he may also be more able to win some without a more personal attack.
In addition, drugs are another way in which Satan will try to win your kids. How many families have been destroyed by this great evil? We must understand that Satan is not happy when families live as God would have them, so he will seek to destroy whatever may bond them to God by any means necessary.
How then, do we meet our adversary? First, Peter says to "Be of sober spirit, be on the alert"(1 Pet. 5:8). We need to realize that if Satan is determined to get to us, even through our kids, we must be prepared to look for and recognize his attacks. Study what you can on drugs and other forms of sin which are so prevalent among young people. Be prepared when your children ask about common social evils. Only when you are knowledgeable can you prepare your children for when they are confronted with these sins.
In addition, Peter says, "Resist him . . ." (v. 9). James gave his readers this two-part admonition: "Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you"(Jas. 4:7). Resistance to Satan will not be easy, especially for your kids. He has as his resources all that the world characterizes as fun and desirable, and for us to resist will require willpower and prayer.
Paul recommends the "full armor of God"(Eph. 6:11) and he details what it will take to stand firm against Satan. At least three times in this description, directly or indirectly, he deals with God's word (truth, v. 14; the gospel, v. 15; word of God, v. 17). Thus, we cannot underestimate a true knowledge of God's will and a desire to put that will into practice. This will help us to defeat Satan, and it will help our kids as they see our influence.
Satan wants your kids, but Satan will not win. It is incumbent on us then, not to give up, for we will win as well if we stand with God. Paul said, "In due time we shall reap if we do not grow weary"(Gal. 6:9). In this case, we will reap children who have the desire and ability to defeat Satan on their own. We will reap saved kids. We will reap victory.