Sunday, February 10, 2013

Death and Life Rest In. . . (Part 5)

So, let us now discuss Satan and see what major role, if any, he plays in all of this.  We mentioned that you had to be very careful of Satan because he is a deceiver.  But did you know that Satan was originally created as Lucifer and was one of God’s highest angels?  While the scriptures do not reveal much detail about this entity, there is a lot of speculation pertaining to him and his existence.  It is believed that there was some type of revolt in heaven and he and one third of the angels were cast down to earth as punishment, but there are no indications as to when this revolt happened or when the fall occurred.  The Bible is somewhat vague about how he became known as Satan and his origins, but this lack of verifiable facts has not stopped the speculation about his existence or lack thereof.

Satan, also known as your Adversary (I Peter 5:8), still possesses all of his angelic attributes and is described as the originator and chef practitioner of sin (I John 3:8).  He is that wicked one (I John 5:18), a thief and a destroyer (John 10:10), a deceiver (Revelation12:9), murderer and liar (John 8:44), and the accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10).  Satan’s craftiness and deceitful nature is first depicted during the fall of mankind in Genesis 3:1-13.  In fact he masquerades as an angel of light (II Corinthians 11:14), while deceives the whole world (Revelation 12:9).  He continues to be in opposition of all that God is by trying to counterfeit the works of God and destroying all that is good.  The phrase deceiveth the whole world (Revelation 12:9) is a definitive statement, summarizing the actions of the devil in the earth realm.

We mentioned that you had to be very careful of Satan, because he is a deceiver.  Satan’s only purpose has been to deceive the world.  He comes but for one purpose, to steal, and to kill, and to destroy (John 10:10) and he uses deception to accomplish his goal.  To deceive is to tell a lie and he is the father of lies and the father of deceit.  You see, if Satan can plant a lie, get you to accept that lie, then get you to act upon that lie, he can gain control of your mind.  By failing to maintain our thought-life, we give him access to our very soul, and this is where he is most dangerous.  He knows, that which controls the mind, controls the soul; for thoughts will always precede actions.  Our thought-life controls those things that operate in succession to define our destiny, which respectively are controlled by our thoughts, our decisions, our actions, our habits, and our character.

Satan is not a creator.  He has used the same tactics as he did during his first encounter with mankind.  He uses the same methods today that he used in that encounter with Eve in the garden.  Why would he change his methods of operation since they worked so well for him in the past against them that were pure in heart and mind?  They had no thoughts that were not pure to confuse their minds and no bad genes passed down for past generations to deal with like you do, but Satan used trickery to defeat them just the same.  What he used to defeat them then, is what he will use to defeat you today.

The devil is out to devour us, but in order to do that, he needs our permission.  Now, we know some of you think we are out of touch with how things are, but before you judge, listen to our message; it might just surprise you.  And as crazy as this sounds, we actually do give the devil permission to devour us, without ever knowing that we have done this.  Satan walks about like a roaring lion, seeking those that he may devour (I Peter 5:8).  The Bible also tells us not to give place or opportunity to the devil (Ephesians 4:27).  This means that he does do not the right to devour anyone unless we give him place or opportunity.  We really like the word permission a whole lot better.  Believe it or not, the devil wanders back and forth about the earth walking up and down it (Job 1:7) looking for those who give him permission to do what he does best, which is to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.  And yes, we give him permission all the time.  And the sad part is that we do not even realize it when we do it.

Now we would like to turn our attention to the book of Job.  As the story has been taught for many years, Job was a perfect and upright man that feared God and shunned evil (Job 1:1).  According to those teachings, God put on display the trophy that he delighted in very much (Job 1:8; Job 2:3).  And we have been taught that God put everything Job owned under Satan’s power, allowing Job to be tempted, tried, and tested (Job 1:12; Job 2:6).  This teaching has become a very intricate part of our culture, because it appears to offer some comfort for us that are living through our own calamities because it appears that his suffering seems to come out of nowhere.  His story has been used as the standard explanation as to why the righteous suffer and why bad things appear to happen to good people.

Truth be told, this is not exactly what happened with Job.  Job’s life was actually impacted by what he spoke.  Job spoke a negative confession, believed that negative confession, and received what he received based on that negative confession which he believed.  As we have said before, our mouth is the master key to our life.  Everything in our life hinges on the words that we speak over our lifetime.  The words we choose to speak have an impact on our life.  When we believe in the things that we speak, in our words, then we activate the system, the system that requires us to speak then to believe before it will produce any results.  Remember the principle is, speak it, believe it, and get it; be it positive or negative.  Whosoever shall say (speak it), believing that those things which he says shall come to pass (believe it), shall have whatsoever he says (get it; be it positive or negative).

Whosoever shall say, where Job in this case spoke of his greatest fear, that he would face some type of judgment, punishment, or destruction from God, the one thing he dreaded the most.

For destruction from God was a terror to me, and by reason of his highness I could not endure (Job 31:23). 

He also feared that his sons might have cursed God in their hearts.  Believing that which he says, where each year he would send for his children and sanctify them, getting up early to offer burnt offerings for each of them because his sons may have sinned and turned away from God, which was his regular practice.

And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts.  Thus did Job continually (Job 1:5).

He shall have whatsoever he says, where the thing that Job greatly feared came on him and that which he was afraid of came to him.

For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me (Job 3:25).

These acts unknowingly opened the door for Satan.  Thus Satan came before God to remind God of the repercussions of this spiritual principle and to collect on what Job had offered him with what he spoke (Job 31:23; Job 1:5).  This may seem like a stretch for some, but let us examine the evidence. 

And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it (Job 1:7).

God asked Satan from where had he come and he replied, from going to and fro in the earth, walking up and down in it.  This verse could have been excluded from the record because everyone is aware that Satan was cast down onto the earth, therefore, there would be no need to know from where he had come, especially for God, yet he asked the question anyway.  Now why do you suppose an all-knowing God would need to ask a question that he already knows the answer to?  It reminds me of when God called to Adam in the Garden, and said, Where art thou (Genesis 3:9)?  God already knew the answer to that question as well as already knowing from where Satan came.  The reason for the question is to let us know that there is something important in the answer that we need to pay attention to, something in the answer that we need to know. 

Remember, All scripture is given to tell you what to believe, what is wrong, how to correct wrong, how to live, and you should rely on them because they includes everything needed to grow in maturity, to be perfect, and to do what God wants (II Timothy 3:16).  Now look at what the Holy Spirit included in the verse, from patrolling the earth, which describes Satan’s activities on the earth, informs you of his character and the evil purpose for all his travel.  And do not forget that Satan is our great enemy, who walks around looking for a victim to devour.  (to be continued).

Enjoy your blessings - KW

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