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Hearing the Roar

Photo by: chris jd

By now many of us have heard the tragic outcome of the 56 wild animals let loose from an exotic animal park by a Zanesville, Ohio man– before killing himself.

According to news reports, 49 of the animals, including a wolf, two grizzly bears, nine male lions, and 18 Bengal tigers, have died. One grizzly bear, three leopards and two monkeys have been captured and transported to the Columbus zoo.

After learning that the animals had been let loose just before dark,  authorities closed schools, barricaded roads, warned the community, and told officers to shoot-to-kill-on-sight before something worse happened.

Since then communities around the country have been reviewing local laws to make sure they are doing everything possible to keep exotic animals in the wild rather than in people’s backyards.

Am guessing that more than a few of us have also spent some time thinking about a spiritual parallel. It’s widely known that the apostle Peter describes our spiritual enemy as being “like a roaring lion” stalking human prey (1Peter 5:8).

Interestingly, Peter describes the danger just after assuring us of how much God cares about us. Before warning us about the devil, the apostle urges us not to be afraid to humble ourselves before the Lord, nor to resist submitting ourselves to one another (i.e. submitting to the good of others rather than assuming that our interests are all that matter) (1Peter 5:5).

Before alerting us to a danger we should watch for and resist Peter writes, “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you (vv6-7).

It is then that he adds, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (v8).

Peter’s caution might raise some questions. What does our spiritual predator do that causes Peter to liken him to a roaring lion? How does he roar? Is the devil trying to frighten or unnerve us to the point that we forget the presence and care of our God?

Peter does seem to imply that the roar could involve some kind of suffering when he adds, “Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world” (v9).

While wondering what Peter is thinking of, I remember the night his Lord said to him, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren” (Luke 22:32).

Since we have since had a chance to read the rest of the story, what did “the roar” turn out to be in Peter’s life? Could it have been the “roar within” of his own fears, followed by the overwhelming damage to his own pride when he failed to live up to his own expectations (22:33)? Is that why he talks about how important it is to humble ourselves under the hand of God, so that, in due time, he can lift us back up (1Peter 5:6)?

Seems like it could be helpful for us to compare notes with one another about “the roar” of our enemy. What do you see in the Bible and from your own experience that might help us recognize the strategies of our enemy?

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20 Responses to “Hearing the Roar”

  1. jam200 says:

    The roar of the lion is greater than the bite. Satan has already been defeated by Jesus. However, his roar can still scare us. We defeat Satan by calling on the Word of God and in essence drown him out. The “word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against thee.”

    Would appreciate prayers for our son, Nathan. He’s struggling right now with who he is. While he is a Christian, he is turning more and more internal. He’s fighting depression and his marriage is not going well.


  2. SFDBWV says:

    Juan, Thank you for the opportunity to pray for you and your son.


  3. SFDBWV says:

    In thinking about Marts subject this morning I am compelled to bring my train of thought over from my last post on yesterday’s topic into this one.

    At first my thoughts went to how a lion seeks out its prey then who is normally its prey.

    The lion seeks out the young and weak to prey upon, seldom does it take on healthy animals as it doesn’t want to be injured in the attack.

    When it does take on a healthy adversary it usually loses its fight and goes off tired and hungry to find a weaker or younger target to prey upon.

    Having said all of that and knowing the habits of lions I then am left to wonder why are so many healthy Christians under attack?

    It leads me to observe two things, the first being that often healthy Christians aren’t who are attacked directly but rather subtly by someone they love coming under attack.

    The other comes from watching once again the animal kingdom and seeing how so many healthy parents often put themselves under attack to save their young.

    Jesus Himself came under attack from Satan, but overcame him; however Jesus gave Himself as a sacrifice so that others may live.

    It leaves me to wonder how many Christians suffer because they suffer in place of another, going willingly into the lions den in order to allow another to be free.


  4. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends!

    I believe, as Juan has so eloquently expressed it, we all journey through valleys and hilltops. I pray to keep a balance between the two extremes of light and dark in daily living. Peter does describe a dark image (1Peter 5:8), counseling believers in Christ to cast all our cares upon the Lord and to be disciplined and alert. But, Paul also describes the manifestation of Satan among believers as “disguis(ing) himself as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14).

    I might say I am more watchful in my own faith walk that I do not feel so “triumphant” as to wander off the Way through abandoning a Scriptural discipline for a message that disguises itself as righteous. Perhaps I am simply describing my own personal journey. But, it seems to me there are two dangers Paul describes for followers of Jesus Christ.


  5. Toml5169 says:

    When I think about the roar of the adversary my thoughts go back to the nation of Israel and the fear they felt over the giants of the land. In Numbers 13:33 we read ” There also we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak are part of the Nephilim); and we became like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.” We become afraid, weak and food for the enemy when we hear the growl and become “grasshoppers in our own eyes”. We believe old lies about ourselves and shrink back in fear that our new identity is not really who we are. We don’t fully believe that the one in us is greater than he that is in the world. We forget the battle is not ours but tbe Lord’s; all because we hear the roar, believe the lie and see ourselves through the grasshopper eyes of fear and doubt. Rise up children of the tribe of Judah (praise) and put our faith in the lion and king of Judah; then and only then will the roar be silenced. We can’t defeat Satan but the one whose presence goes before us, just as He would have done with Israel, is mighty to save. Is it not interesting that Peter uses the roar of a lion to describe Satan’s prowling and our Lord Jesus is referred to as the lion of Judah.
    Be blessed.

  6. poohpity says:

    Wow, Mart, there are so many ways that satan seems to work his way into our lives. Some seem to be in your face while others are very subtle. Some small ways seem to be mixing some truth with lies and if one does not stand on God’s whole Word telling the difference can be difficult but God has offered the gift of discernment. Then it can take the stance of roaring like people do to boast about how Godly they are and how righteous they seem while judging others similar to John 8:3-11. Satan can even tell us to seek happiness that is dependent on the things happening around us rather than a joy and peace that comes from fully trusting God in every circumstance. Another that is more subtle is self reliance although it may seem beneficial in the long run it is just pride. Fear can also be a weapon of satan just like he used with Peter.

    The one thing I find peace in, is knowing that whatever satan can bring into our lives God can turn it around and use it to benefit someone. Relying on emotions and not truth often times lead us astray when we come into any circumstance that gets our minds off of God and we start looking at the things around us we begin to sink. Gosh the list of satan’s wiles can go on and on but hopefully being aware that we have a God who cares for us to help us see and hear and be aware and realize that that battle is the Lord’s and we can trust Him fully to take of us will give us peace. After all God has given us some very good armor to protect us.

  7. poohpity says:

    Posted at the same time, Tom and said similar things great minds think for themselves, lol!!

  8. oneg2dblu says:

    The Roar of the Prowling One is how he first terrorizes every thing he plans to prey upon. Many flee and even trip over themselves. The only defense for us, is everything found in who we pray upon, in our moments of fear of that roar, and the actual threat that even silent darkness can bring. The chase is certainly part of it, and we cannot out run this enemy, so we must use our weapons that God gave us, to protect us from all the Wiles of our Enemies. Silently stalking is also an effective approach he will use, surprizing many, and capturing those who are unprepared.
    To great areas of exposure to being caught and killed, are Inactivity and Unbelief. If God had given us the ability to hide, we could possibly remain undetected,
    but He has given us His Armor instead. He wants us to be actively involved, not crouching in the corner attempting to hide, but making a stand, like being on a hill as a mighty warrior , as one being seen from a great distasnce, standing with God, and ready for battle.
    Satan knows his match, Satan knows his final end, and he wants as many along with him as he can catch, but the Battle is already the Lord’s to win. We are to
    be Prepared, Ready for Battle, and be on God’s side.
    Then, we will win the daily challenges Evil presents in the life of every one of God’s Army. Gary

  9. foreverblessed says:

    To get the contact between Jesus and ourselves to a minimum, that is a strategy.
    In my life, focusing on things that went wrong, too much focus, and I ended depressed.
    With all bad things around us, in our bodies, in our families, when we do not set our eyes on Jesus, we loose contact.(I pray for you son, Juan).
    We overcome evil with good. The good is Jesus in us, focus on Him, is what I do now, but years ago I thought that you must face the bad things, not looking at it, and only looking to Jesus seemed childish. Now I see that that was a lie from the adversary.
    Jesus has overcome, we must stand with Him. I am learning now to keep praising God, even when feeling sick, I say that I feel sick to God, and ask His help to praise Him.
    Sing spiritual songs, say out loud the points of faith. Where Jesus is growing in us, the evil will slowly have to move out.
    Pat, thanks for your story (last topic), and amazingly encouraging words you wrote!

  10. foreverblessed says:

    To add to the scripture Mart gave 1 Peter 5:5-9,
    there is also the line: cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.
    That was the thing I did not do, I told God my anxiety and walked off and took them with me. So my thoughts stayed with my anxiety. And not on Jesus.
    Jesus says: Look to me and be saved.
    It is a discipline for me to do this, tell God my anxiety, and leave them with Him, and I can go on praising Him. It is a matter of telling myself, no stop this negative thinking, I just told God about them, He is all powerful He is the strong Lion, and while thinking that my thoughts go on how great God is. Then the next second I think of the bad, and how easy to repeat it over and over again. Say stop again, think of How great our God.
    Going to another christian and praying together and singing spiritual songs together helps.
    1 Peter 5:10 is also beautiful.
    A lot of us have written here our sufferings, and of loved ones we know, but the end is great, we will be stronger because of them, because God will make us strong, firm and steadfast.

  11. Regina says:

    Good Evening All,

    Hope all is well in your lives! Just stopped by to say hello and to tell you that I’m looking forward to chatting with you soon. I’ve been busy with the usual…work, chores, etc., but I can’t wait until I have more time to fellowship with yall. Hope you all had a great weekend.

    Love to all,

  12. remarutho says:

    Mart & Friends —

    You wrote:
    “While wondering what Peter is thinking of, I remember the night his Lord said to him, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren” (Luke 22:32).”

    As I consider the transformed Peter — the man who preached in the anointing of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:14-36) — it seems to me he had wept and prayed his way back to God from the over-confident and stupid remark he made after Jesus told him that he had already prayed for him (Luke 22:32). Peter replied, “Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death.” (Luke 22:33)

    He had not been ready, for he did deny Jesus when the chips were down. (Luke 22:58-60) In his bitter weeping (Luke 22:62) he held onto his faith, as Jesus prayed he would. He moved into leadership that guided Jewish believers in Jesus for the next thirty years.

    Peter did, in time, go to prison for Christ. And at last, he was put to death for preaching Christ. Surely, all pride was finally removed from Peter — for Jesus put the mantle of service upon him and renamed him the Rock. He was transformed into the Rock from whatever he was before.


  13. Mart De Haan says:

    Such good comments!! Thanks to all of you for wading into to this one. You’re seeing that there seems to be a relationship between “the roar” and the misdirection of one or more of our own natural desires.

    When the Apostle James talks about temptation that plays off our own natural desires (James 1:14), am wondering whether it’s a matter of some God-given longing within us that is teased out, inflamed, misdirected, indulged and then condemned loudly by an enemy that seems to be able to use our own heads and heart as his loudspeaker…. to rant and roar against ourselves, others and our God…

  14. BruceC says:

    Good morning all.

    It is interesting how Peter speaks of humility first and then cautions us of the enemy.
    That “roar” is mostly the roar from within ourselves; to put number one first. But we are to submit to the Lord and each other; the exact opposite. Just as the first sin was the sin of pride by Satan it is the most dangerous to us also and the enemy knows this. Think of how pride leads to so many other sins and destructive actions and habits.
    So when our fallen nature rises up within, and Satan tempts us; we are to “shoot it on sight” with the Word of God.

    Soli Deo Gloria!

  15. poohpity says:

    So Mart, is there a difference between satan’s wiles and our own inclinations? It seems in the garden the temptation was to be like God by knowing the difference between good and evil yet in the time satan tempted Jesus in the desert was to display His power beyond what the Father had given Him to do and show off who He truly was. So it seems also when satan appeared before God regarding Job satan requested the ability to sift Job with accusations and attempts to make him deny God. In Zechariah 3 satan again accuses Joshua of many things before God but yet God showed mercy to him instead. So what other methods does satan use? Is it only to bring us before God so that God will reject us or we will reject God? The things we have mentioned above are they more of our own inclinations while we try to blame satan for them so we do not take responsibility for our own actions?

  16. poohpity says:

    Off Topic, please pray for more cases of bibles to fill my trunk to pass out to those who wish to know God by reading His Word. We have given out 5 cases with prayers to put the desire in people to read His word and know Him better. I have only one bible left and it is in Spanish. They are Life Application Bibles so please pray for more for this Ministry. Thank you. I also will be praying for Nathan.

  17. SFDBWV says:

    I have always been amazed that Satan is able to be in God’s presence. In Job 1: 6-12 we read a conversation between God and Satan concerning God allowing Satan to test Job by tormenting him.

    In 1 Samuel 16: 15 God sends an evil spirit to torment Saul, in 1 Kings 22: 20-23 a spirit stands before the Lord and says he will go an lie to the king and so God put a lying spirit in the mouths of the prophets, as referenced by Mart in Luke 22: 31 Satan asks to sift peter.

    It is not until revelation 12: 7-9 that Satan is cast out of heaven and down to the earth, defeated.

    So then who or what is it that goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour?

    We also learn from Job 1: 7 that Satan can go back and forth from heaven and earth and walk about it, and in Daniel 10: 10-13 we learn that there is an evil spirit that dwells over Persia and interferes with men and God’s messengers.

    So then we can understand that there is a supernatural battle going on around us at all times one we don’t see but can influence its outcome.

    How do these evil agents gain power and especially power over us? They have no power over us and are only able to influence us. From the beginning in the Garden we had dominion over all the earth (Genesis 1: 28) and as believers and followers of Christ we have power over Satan and his legions.

    So if we have such power how then is it that we can fall prey to the attack of this one who is “like a lion” (but not a lion, only a spiritual predator)?

    It is simple it is we who give the evil forces in our lives power, all they need do is place temptation in our way and when we give in to temptation we strengthen them and their influence over us increases.

    Their roar is a voice of triumph when we succumb that becomes a whimper when we do not. They are only able to devour those who willingly allow themselves to be.

    Too often they attack when we are least prepared to fend them off and use others whom they can, to aid them in their warfare against us.

    So we must be ever vigilant and brave like the African tribesmen who hunt down lions with a sharp stick. Know our adversary and ally ourselves with the one who holds all things in the palm of His hand.


  18. SFDBWV says:

    May we all join in prayer for the people of Turkey.


  19. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh… what a great choice for a bible.
    After all, everything boils down to application or we miss the whole point, of the power contained in His Word.
    If it does not apply directly to us, then who else is it written for?
    I believe application is the “whole context” of why God has given us His Plan in writing, and not just allowing us our own way to salvation.
    It is written for a reason… and that reason is for Our Aplication! Gary

  20. oneg2dblu says:

    Steve… I, like you, do not see any Lion, or hear any Lion’s Roar from where I am writing this reply. But I do see a trinity of worldly desire, that captures the real animal,(Me, Myself, and I) that it serves so well.
    What I would call this lion, or human trinity that seems to always rule us, would be our own EGO!
    It has so many deceptive forms and so many realms,
    that it parades around right in front of us, and we cannot detect it in ourselves.
    It even hides within our daily postings…
    God shows it to us through his Holy Spirit. A spirit that only takes up residence in a willingly obedient soul that it then inhabits, and only through the Grace of God.
    But, our freewill can remove it instantaneously, as we desire to respond to the call of sin instead.
    That very desire is not of the Holy Spirit, but of the well fed ego, that consumes us unaware.
    Wake up and smell the desires within your own sinnig heart, and there you’ll find that “Devouring Prowler” that awaiting none but you.
    Our God tells us in His clearly written word, we must actively resist this desire, or it will have us.

    Thanks for the heads up to pray for those who are having to endure throught this natural event in Turkey. Sometimes distance alone takes away the impact of such a horrific event, so we tend to forget. I know I did! Gary

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