Saturday, October 16, 2010

Our Adversary Satan

Characteristics of Satan’s kingdom - Our Adversary

General Characteristics

In rebellion against God (Daniel 10:13, 20)

God is preparing Satan's kingdom for final destruction (Revelation 20:10,14)

Inferior to God's Kingdom: Jesus demonstrated this by casting out demons (Matthew 12: 24-30).

Mission objectives

Maintain Satan's rule of the earth (John 12:31, Revelation 12:3-17,16:14, 20:7-8)

Oppose God's kingdom and the redemption of people (Revelation 12:17)

Promote rebellion against God (sin) (Ephesians 2:2)

Steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10)

Draw worship, devotion and service from people to assist in mission accomplishment (Luke 4:7, Revelation 13: 1,3-4,8,11-12,14-15)

Command Structure

Ruler: Satan

Formerly Lucifer (Isaiah 14:12), who was the covering cherub angel for God's throne (Ezekiel 28:14-16). (See Ezekiel 10 and Ezekiel 1:5-26 for description of the cherubim angels)

Served in the midst of the fiery stones before the throne of God (Ezekiel 28:14,16)

Created perfect in beauty, adorned with precious stones and full of wisdom (Ezekiel 28:12-16)

Established by God with tremendous power (Isaiah 14:9-11, Ezekiel 28:14)

Sinned by pride (Isaiah 14:13-14, Ezekiel 28:17)

Is/was a destroyer of nations and cities (Isaiah 14:12,16,17,20)

God cast him out of heaven (Isaiah 14:12, Ezekiel 28:16-17, Luke 10:18)

Became Satan ("the adversary") and accuser of the brethren (Zechariah 3:1-2)

Current status:

Satan is the ruler of the earth (Luke 4:5-6, John 12:31). He is also referred to as the "prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience" (Ephesians 2:2 NKJV)

Has authority, power and a throne (Revelation 13:2), and may give his authority over the earth to whomever he wishes (Luke 4:5-7). He will ultimately give his throne, his power and great authority to the beast (Revelation 13:2).

Primary tactics: steal, kill, and destroy (John 10:10). He also uses death (Hebrews 2:14), deception (Revelation 12:9), lust (Proverbs 11:6, 2 Peter 1:4, Ephesians 2:1-3) and pride (1 John 2:15-17) to rule the earth.

He is stealthy, seeking opportune times to attack (Luke 4:13)

Asks for God’s permission to afflict certain people: Peter (Luke 22:31); Job (Job 1:11-12).

He is the father of lies and there is no truth in him (John 8:44)

He is a murderer (John 8:44)

Powers:

Has the power of death until both he and death are destroyed during the establishment of God’s everlasting kingdom on earth (1 Corinthians 15:24-26, Revelation 20:10,14)

Able to supernaturally move people (Luke 4:9) and project temptation into the mind (Luke 4:5, John 13:2).
Strong deception powers to deceive individuals (2 Corinthians 4:4) and nations (Revelation 20:3, 8,10).
Can transform himself into an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14)

Can travel back and forth on earth and also to heaven (1 Peter 5:8, Job 1:6-7, 2:1-2)
His power and rule are limited (Revelation 12:9, 20:1-3)
Not omnipresent (Luke 4:13)

Forces

Forces include principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this age, spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places (Ephesians 6:12)
With the exception of people used by evil, Satan’s forces are spiritual, not flesh and blood (Ephesians 6:12)

Evil Angels:

Satan deceived a third of the angels in heaven and them to serve himself (Revelation 12:3-9). Since there are "myriads and myriads" of God's angels, it follows that a third of them is also a large number (Hebrews 12:22, Revelation 5:11)

Fight with God's angels over matters involving human events. Daniel 10:13,20 depicts warfare between good and evil angels.

Will fight God's Archangel Michael and other angels and will be cast out of heaven with Satan (Revelation 12:9).

Will ultimately be tormented in everlasting fire (Matthew 25:41)

Imprisoned forces: Some rebelling angels were imprisoned just before Noah's flood and now await final judgment. They rebelled by taking human wives and produced offspring (Genesis 6:1-6). They helped draw the human race into continual evil. God sent the flood to wipe out this corrupted race, and imprisoned the guilty angels in Hell (2 Peter 2:4, Jude 6). Jesus Christ proclaimed his victory over all evil to these imprisoned spirits during His resurrection, sealing their destruction (1 Peter 3:18-20).
Demons/Evil Spirits

Characteristics

Dwell on the earth and seek bodies to inhabit. (Revelation 18:2, Matthew 12:43-44, Mark 5:12)
Know they will suffer at the hands of Jesus at an appointed time (Matthew 8:29)

Recognize Jesus Christ as the Son of God (Mark 1:24-26, Mark 5:10-13). They also recognize those operating under the authentic authority of Jesus Christ (Acts 19:15).

Communal. When re-inhabiting a former host person, a demon will take 7 spirits more wicked than himself and reoccupy the person (Matthew 12:43-45). Examples of multiple demons inhabiting a person are found at Mark 16:9 (Mary had 7 demons) and Mark 5:9 (Gadarenes man had a legion of demons). Also, in James 3:16 NKJV, James confirmed their communal traits, "where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there."

Have intellect and will (Matthew 12:43-45)

Vary in level of wickedness (Matthew 12:43-45)

Description: Job’s friend, Eliphaz, described an encounter with an evil spirit in Job 4:12-21. The spirit was characterized by fear and disquieting thoughts. Eliphaz saw the spirit’s form but was unable to discern it’s appearance.

Capabilities

Limited power; they require rest (Matthew 12:43-44)

Can travel (Matthew 12:43-45)

Can affect the "state" of their host person (Matthew 12:43-45) ranging from total demonic possession (Mark 5:2-8) to periodic demonic influence (Mark 9:17-18).

They are able to influence the emotions, thoughts and actions of their host toward destruction. Examples include the Gerasene demoniac cutting himself in Mark 5:5 and the boy who was being thrown into the fire in Mark 9:22.

Vary in power level. Some are only routed through prayer and fasting (Matthew 17:21, Mark 9:29).

People

People can be used by evil powers to accomplish satanic purposes. Examples include Judas betraying Christ (John 13:27), Elymas thwarting

Paul’s ministry (Acts 13:8-10) and David numbering Israel's army (1 Chronicles 21:1).

Can be used as false apostles and deceitful workers (2 Corinthians 11:13-15).

Satan's forces can speak through Christians (Matthew 16:22-23). Satan spoke through Peter, tempting Jesus to avoid suffering and death.

Satan may enter people to influence them directly (Judas - Luke 22:3, Ananias – Acts 5:3)

Sin nature: Our own sin nature can be our worst enemy. Evil powers may try to manipulate us by appealing to our sin nature and use sinful desires to war against us (1 Peter 2:11-12, James 1:14-15).

Communication:

Native kingdom language is deception. Satan is the father of lies (John 8:44).

Satan's Forces are able to communicate individually and as a group. This is illustrated in the examples of the legion of demons in the Gerasene demoniac (Mark 5:2-8) and the demon returning with 7 other demons to his host in Matthew 12:43-45.

Evil words: Can be used to promote destruction, fear, doubt, blasphemy and curses (James 3:6,10-12). One example of how evil forces can use evil words is found in Ecclesiastes 10:20. Solomon talked about how a "bird of the air" could reveal a person's evil thoughts and words spoken privately to other people. The Amplified Bible refers to a "winged creature," which could suggest a fallen angel or demon that intercepts thoughts and words.

Idle words: can provide a foothold for affliction and judgment of the speaker (Matthew 12:36-37)
Blocking: Evil angels attempted to block God's angel from bringing the answer to Daniel's prayer in Daniel 10:13,20.

Counterfeit spiritual gifts: evil forces may use counterfeit spiritual manifestations to accomplish their purposes. Divination, necromancy, witchcraft, fortune telling, palm reading and sorcery are all examples of manifestations of evil power (see occult sin page for more info and refs).

Future: Jesus Christ will crush Satan's kingdom completely, and the last enemy to be destroyed will be death (1 Corinthians 15:24-26). The

Archangel Michael will defeat Satan and hurl him down from heaven (Revelation 12:9). Next, he will be bound by an angel and thrown into the pit for 1000 years (Revelation 20:1-3). Finally, Satan and his forces will be cast into the lake of fire permanently (Revelation 20:10,14-15). Jesus

Christ will then triumphantly hand over the kingdom to God the Father (1 Corinthians 15:24-25).

by Traci Morin

keywords: adversary, healing prayers, satan, heaven, angels, Christ, revelations, evil forces, Israel, authority of Jesus Christ, Pride, the accuser, Archangel Michael, evil angels, Strong deception powers

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