The Issue Of Footholds And Strongholds

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The Issue of Footholds and Strongholds
In your anger do not sin. Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.
Ephesians 4:26-27
While this verse is about handling anger, the greater truth that it brings to light is that our thoughts and actions can be responsible for giving the devil a foothold. In this case, if we handle anger wrongly we give the devil a foothold. For our purposes, we want to use this verse to focus on the issue of footholds and what it says they mean in the life of a believer.
The word foothold (topos in the Greek) means “a place which a person or thing occupies.” It does not mean that Satan has complete possession of someone, only a place in their life. The idea of the word topos is a portion of something, like a room in a building or a place in a book. This means that a foothold does not give Satan full control over us, but it does give him a place from which he can harass us. Another meaning of topos is opportunity. Some Bible versions translate this verse, do not give the devil an opportunity (NASB). Giving Satan a topos means you’re giving him an opportunity to influence you in a particular area of your life.
“Influence you” means the power to affect the actions, behavior, opinions, and character of someone. How much influence he is given depends on how large the foothold is. Some people think of this as giving Satan legal ground or legal authority to influence us. The idea of legal
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