Lies we’ve been fed.

With all of the changes and violence in the news, and people thinking about the end of the world and Biblical prophecies, something I’ve noticed lately is that most people have huge misconceptions about Satan and Hell. Even as Christians, we need to take note of the lies we’ve been fed…

Satan in hell cartoonIt begins when we watch cartoons as kids…. You know, when someone dies, there’s the devil: all red, with horns, a tail, and a pitch fork, waiting to welcome the newest inmates that have arrived for him to torment! — *ahem!* — Firstly, let’s remember that Satan is a fallen angel, formerly called Lucifer, who in his pride wanted to be equal with God. One third of the angels followed him, and they (now called “demons”) were all cast out of heaven.

Satan’s status in Hell will be absolutely nil. He will have NO power. – Hell is a place of eternal death for Satan, his demons, AND all who have died a spiritual death due to sin. That is… all who are not covered by the blood of Jesus Christ, through faith! – Hell is complete separation from God… we wanted nothing to do with God, so that’s exactly what He gives us: the absence of Himself.

Satan is NOT the master of Hell! Satan didn’t create Hell, and God certainly didn’t create it for him as a place where Satan could be the ruler, and reign his terror on sinners. – [Our sins are disobedience against GOD’S law, and Satan is the worst offender. He has no right to punish anyone.] – The Bible tells us Satan is the “father of lies”, who masquerades as an angel of light. – His acting is convincing, and his temptations are tempting. (Obviously!) He wants to keep as many people bound by sin as possible.

Moreover, there is the concept of an/the Antichrist. Firstly, anyone who is against Christ is anti-christ, i.e. an antichrist. But Satan’s biggest attempt to overthrow God’s plan will ultimately be [the] Antichrist. Until he is thrown into Hell, Satan will continue to do all he can to steal, kill and destroy. He’s *always* trying to raise up the Antichrist, because although God knows who it will be, he doesn’t! He can’t see the future. — This is a good reminder to simply put our trust in the Lord, and not waste our life or money trying to figure out prophecies that God said we’re not supposed to know the answer to.

Maybe next time, when people around you are upset about the next big tragedy in the headlines, you can talk to them about how the one true God is a God of justice. He will never let the wicked go unpunished, and Satan will one day meet a very bitter end; never to gain power again.

Illusory Coincidences

I have a friend that I have been mentoring for the last year and a half who has struggled with drug addiction for many years. He has moved around a few times to help him steer clear of former drug dealers and various influences from his past, all while he’s worked hard to try to rebuild his life. It’s been awesome to see him respond to God’s grace over the last few months, but an interesting situation occurred last month that has really tested him. After he made a purchase at an electronics store, he went to his home and waited for the product to be delivered. Showing up at his doorstep with the product he had purchased was a former drug dealer who was also working for the electronics company. This drug dealer not only began to try making some re-connections, but he also now had access to all of my friend’s personal information (through the computers at the electronics store). So tell me, are situations like this merely coincidence, is God just out to test us, or is there something more sinister going on behind the scenes?

We talk a lot at VOICE about how real our God is, but do you live your life with the awareness that you have a very real enemy as well? Satan wants to snuff out your life! If he can’t do that, then he wants to work his hardest to ensure that you are not able to walk truly in the Light of Gospel. Situations like my friend encountered are a stark reminder to me that there is no such thing as coincidence. Are you going to tell me that in a town of 100,000 people the one person you don’t want on your doorstep “just happens” to show up?

One note of caution: I’ll be the first to tell you that just because temptations and trials come, I don’t believe that indicates that there is a demon hiding behind every tree (Luke has some good thoughts on this very topic). Not only is that mentality nowhere in Scripture, but I also know the state of my own heart and what I naturally gravitate towards.

However, here’s the challenge: as we know, just believing that God is real does not really get you too far. The demons believe, and they’re even freaked out by the knowledge (James 2:19). If your eyes have been opened to the truth of the Gospel, you’re going to try to live it out. The same point exists regarding our enemy. Do you believe that Satan is real? That’s nice…so, what are you doing about it?

Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring [in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 AMP)

Satan is real. Live like it.