Today’s devotion from Martin Luther was another excellent one. I’ve mentioned this daily devotional before, and I just want to say again what a value the book has been for me.
This particular entry has to do with the temptations and attacks of Satan that we feel every day. Some days, of course, we feel it more than others, and this devotion applies to this days especially.
The Messenger of the LORD camps around those who fear him, and he rescues them. ~Psalm 34:7
This is one of the most remarkable passages in the Psalms. We can claim it as our own. But you might say, “I don’t see or feel God’s angels around me. Actually, I feel like I am under the power of the devil and am being led to hell.” My answer would be, “Don’t let yourself think that way! If you had been handed over to the devil, he wouldn’t let you live one hour without plunging you into a life of crime. As a matter of fact, he probably wouldn’t even give you time to do anything wrong, but would kill you right away. You are still alive because of the protection of the holy angels. The time will come when you have to leave this earth and, with God’s permission, you may be subjected to Satan’s anger. But God, in his mercy and undeserved kindness, will strengthen you through his Word.”
When you are handed over to Satan, it will only be for a very short time. This isn’t to condemn you but to test you, to bring about salvation and endless blessings. Christ said, “A single grain of wheat doesn’t produce anything unless it is planted in the ground and dies. If it dies, it will produce a lot of grain” (John 12:24). In the same way, Christ was handed over to murderers, but only for a short time and to bring about salvation. So when you feel Satan bothering and tempting you, pray and thank God that you won’t fail but that you are only going through a trial in order to be purified. Jeremiah comforts us by saying, “I keep this one thing in mind: the LORD’s mercy. We were not completely wiped out. His compassion is never limited” (Lamentations 3:21-22).