Sunday, January 18, 2009

18 words: the devil

I know its a couple of days late, I apologize.

In his chapter on the devil, Packer gives reason for the state of the evangelical church today. Specifically the "spineless, powerless, unevangelical compared with what they were a century ago." That "collapse" is in large part due to our reluctance to believe in and talk about the devil. He has become a myth and has gone unnoticed for many, many years.

The present state of the church does two things: "it fools men, by keeping from them the knowledge of their danger as objects of the devil's attacks, and it dishonors Christ by robbing the cross of its significance as a conquest of Satan and his hosts."

To right this problem we must get a firm grasp on who God is, because if our portrait of God is false, then likely our portrait of the devil will be fallacious as well. Scripture is clear that Satan and his demons "are of quite unimaginable badness--more cruel, more malicious, more proud, more scornful, more perverted, more destructive, more disgusting, more filthy, more despicable, than anything our minds can conceive."

And, so, the devil is active in this world and God is allowing him this temporary power in order to execute judgments against us for a time. But, the Christian has hope that the world does not. We have Christ.

And so, in order to withstand the wicked and evil nature of the devil we must, as Paul says, put on the whole armor of God and prayer at all times, taking confidence that He has won and will win every battle and that we will have the power to resist the devil. James gives a similar promise chapter 4 verse 7 "resist the devil and he will flee from you."

We have an enemy, we have a weapon and we have a promise. Go and fight.


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