Christians barely have enough time to recover from multiple corporations’ bathroom policies when they are reeling from a [frankly unconstitutional] public school decree from the POTUS, right on the heels of last summer’s shocking revelations about Planned Parenthood selling aborted baby parts – and all during an unheard-of presidential election between a former First Lady-turned-presidential-candidate who is known to be corrupt; a socialist; and a reality TV star who cannot for the life of him take a decent photo op without either duck lips or his hair standing at attention.
This is not our grandmother’s America anymore.
All these disturbing news reports, divisions among Americans, global chaos, ISIS, and outright God-bashing are not unrelated. They have one source, and one source only: satan*. The Bible is clear about satan’s strategies and methods – and God assures us that if we fight for Him, we will certainly be attacked. Yet [and oh how I love that our Lord is the Lord of ‘yets’], God promises us that He is with us, and He gives us the tools necessary to defect satan’s arrows.
satan knows and twists Scripture. He did it to Eve in the Garden of Eden and Jesus in the wilderness. He always starts by planting a seed of doubt or a question of God’s faithfulness. “Did God really say?” “If you are the Son of God…”
We see this today. If God is love, then you should accept homosexuality. Jesus would have eaten with homosexuals and accepted them.
Let’s look at this carefully. God is love. God loves us enough to give His only Son to take on humanity’s sins and die as a substitutionary sacrifice so that we may be pure in God’s eyes – and God raised His Son from death to declare that the grave holds no power anymore and satan is defeated. God is too pure to even look upon sin [Habakkuk 1:13] so why would He allow us to condone something if He has deemed it a sin?
Yes, Jesus shared meals with prostitutes, tax collectors, sinners, fishermen and priests. He did not discriminate – but He loved the sinners too much to allow them to stay that way. After a woman was caught in adultery and her accusers left her, Jesus asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”
“No one, sir,” she said.
“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin,” emphasis added. Not being condemned by Christ means that you must repent – that is, turn away from sin.
satan would tell us differently. Jesus described him this way in John 8:44 – “He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”
Every lie that passes across human lips has been kissed by satan. Satan incites (1 Chronicles 21:1), accuses (Zechariah 3), and does not have God’s concerns in mind at all (Matthew 16:23; Mark 6:33).
He binds people to their sin and shame and only Christ can forgive them – and satan knows that. Mark 4:15 states, “Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them.” Think about that: satan wants some people so badly that he throws everything he has at them, he removes opportunities for the Gospel seed to grow in them and binds them in their sinful lifestyle. He takes away the Gospel seed that was planted in them.
This is why children can grow up in church, hear the Gospel message all their lives, and still be snatched away into a sinful lifestyle even to the point they will denounce God. This is all a strategy from satan, to lure people away from having a relationship with Jesus.
While I’ve been writing this particular blog post, I have experienced computer problems of every sort. My laptop battery has suddenly, without warning, refuses to hold a charge and I have to keep it plugged into the AC power source, which will just come out of the port. I have lost and re-written more than half of this post several times as the auto-save feature has refused to function…then I look over at my notes to read 1 Thessalonians 2:18:
“For we wanted to come to you — certainly I, Paul, did, again and again — but Satan blocked our way.”
Paul wanted to visit the church at Thessalonica but satan blocked their way. Every time the Lord leads me to do something for Him satan throws up roadblocks and problems to keep me from doing the Lord’s work. Satan does everything in his power to thwart the spread of the Gospel message.
Just turn on the news and see what satan is doing: inciting corporations to force women and men to share bathrooms; killing unborn children (he was also behind child sacrifice in ancient cultures); lies and absurd, power-hungry politicians; terrorists raping, beheading, crucifying and decapitating men, women and children who proclaim the name of Christ.
Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 11:14 that “Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.” Listen, beloved: Any person who stands as evangelist, pastor, preacher or priest and proclaims any teaching other than the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a puppet from satan. Look for the strings: prosperity gospel; praying to any saint (God Himself ripped the curtain in the Holy of Holies in half; there is no mediator between God and man save Jesus Christ Himself); the word missional.
Missional is the latest buzzword. While on the surface it means living a life according to the Great Commission, it comes with it the thought that one must be tolerant, progressive and accepting of marketing trends that should influence the Church.
God should influence the Church through His Word. The Church should never attempt to influence God with marketing trends, buzzwords or preaching tolerance as a gateway to live a life of sin. God does not want anyone to go to hell; to avoid that, one must know His Son. Jesus said in John 14:6, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” The Great Commission was given to Christ’s followers to go into all the world, sharing His gospel, making disciples and teaching the truth.
satan throws everything at God’s people to steer them off course and lead humanity to the pit of hell. He uses false teachers, influential celebrities, politics, terrorists, a misspoken word, busyness, everything within his grasp. His goal? “…To lead the whole world astray…” [Revelation 12:9]. The writer of Hebrews wrote that Christ “shared in [our] humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death — that is, the devil,” [2:14].
Yet…we serve the God of Yets…when Christ rose from the dead, He defeated satan. Paul wrote, ““Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” [1 Corinthians 15:55]. Glory!
In the meantime, what do we do? We abide in Christ. We read, study and memorize the Word of God. We pray fervently for missionaries, for each other, for the lost, for political leaders. We stand up for the things of God. Matthew 10:33 states, “But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven” – so we open our mouths, close our wallets and stand our ground for Christ’s sake.
We have no need of fear because we have Christ. We should not be alarmed at what is going on in the world around us. As Peter wrote in his first epistle:
“Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler. However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name. [4:12-16]
Satan is powerful, my friends – but Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and He has already defeated this foe. We need to stay vigilant in prayer, mindful in the Word, keep in fellowship with the Church and other believers, and keep standing.
To finish, let us march boldly into the armory of God…”Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God...
"And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people,” [Ephesians 6:10-18].
Victorious with you,
* As a rule, I do not honor satan with a capital letter s. I know it's not grammatically correct, but I choose to not give him that honor.
(c) 2016 Terrie McKee
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