Wednesday: Satan’s Fight

If you looked carefully at yesterday’s study, you would have seen a progression of how God manifested Himself and His truth in the midst of the great controversy.

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God worked through the patriarchal and Israelite sanctuary services, through Christ’s sacrificial atoning death, through the church, and through Christ’s own ministry in the heavenly sanctuary.

Satan, however, has worked tirelessly to try to undermine the Lord’s plans. So much of the great controversy has been, and is now, fought out over these very issues.

For instance, the sacrificial system practiced by the patriarchs, and in Israel’s sanctuary service, was designed by God to remind humankind of the Creator and to keep the hope of redemption alive.

How did Satan seek to usurp and destroy the truth about the plan of salvation, especially as revealed in the sacrificial system? See Rom. 1:20-28; Deut. 32:17-18.

Of course, the incarnation of Christ, His ministry on earth, and His atoning sacrificial death on the cross were the central parts of how God chose to defeat Satan in the great controversy. The death of Christ would guarantee the undoing of Satan, who worked tirelessly against Christ.

What do these texts (Matt. 2:1-18, 4:1-11, 16:21-23, 27:39-42) tell us about the ways in which Satan worked against Jesus?

After His death and resurrection, Christ established His church on earth to proclaim to lost humanity the good news of salvation. From the inception of the church, Satan has determined to weaken and destroy it. The following passages show some of Satan’s tactics against the church (See Acts 5:17-18; 7:54-60; 2 Thess. 2:1-4; 1 Tim. 4:1; 2 Pet. 2:1; Rev. 12:13-17).

Meanwhile, the book of Hebrews tells of a real sanctuary in heaven where Christ entered after His ascension (Heb. 4:14-16, 9:24), performing a priestly function on behalf of sinful humanity (Heb. 7:27). In Daniel 8:11-14,
we can see Satan’s activity in connection with Christ’s priestly ministry in the heavenly sanctuary and his attempt to usurp that ministry.

It’s one thing to read 1 Peter 5:8-9 and have an intellectual understanding of that warning; it’s another to actually live out that warning in our daily lives. How do we, in fact, resist the devil? How often during a single day are you aware of Satan’s efforts against you?



Wednesday: Satan’s Fight — 8 Comments

  1. I see how in many churches this is beginning to happen. How many different views of the gospel begin to shift the paths into "new" concepts that have 99% of true. Now those who stand for the bible principles are seen with distrust. We are definitely living at the end of the times. Be prayful and faithful to God and keep your crown so no one can take it away from you.

  2. Indeed the battle at a personal level is that of surrendering to God and living in an attitude of constant prayer, as opposed to living "our way". When we talk about abiding in Christ and doing His will, it comes down to every detail in our lives, that's His invitation for us, that we may remain in His love just as He remained in the Father's love when He walked this earth. He was never disloyal and overcame temptation with an: "It is Written".

    • Thanks, Rebeca. I think sometimes we don't recognize the battle, because we think we are doing what we want--and that's exactly what Satan wants us to do. He wants us to live for self--to do our will, rather than God's will.

      The battle against self is the greatest battle we will ever have to fight.

  3. Using the same motive that caused his fall – selfishness, Satan tempted humanity to reject their accountability to God by causing them to worship things they created (idols) and to indulge in self gratification (perversion).

  4. Yes, Satan has indeed worked tirelessly to pervert the understanding of God's great plan of salvation in which He Himself provided the offering for that we might be redeemed from the slavery of the enemy.

    In sacrificial system before Christ's incarnation, which pointed forward to His life and sacrificial death, became perverted into a system of offerings to appease angry gods. The lessons that were intended to teach that there was nothing we could do to earn salvation were perverted and those very offerings were used as a system to "buy" salvation. What a tragedy!

    But it didn't stop when Jesus came to demonstrate the character of the Father. Satan managed to pervert even the self-sacrifice of the Son for our salvation. In many minds Satan planted the idea that Jesus was the loving Savior whose death placated the wrath of an angry God. What a travesty!

    But it doesn't end there either. In our own Seventh-day Adventist church we have some leaders teaching that Christ's death was not substitutionary--that He did not die the death that we deserve so that we might have the life that He deserves. This is the opposite error from the one that says that Christ's self-sacrifice was intended to appease an angry God.

    The Father's character was demonstrated in the Son--a character of self-renouncing love. We cannot truly comprehend it. We can only grasp it by faith and ask Him to renew our hearts so that we may better understand this otherwise incomprehensible love and let this love flow through us to those around us.

    • There is also danger in seeing Christ's death as only substitutionary. There was more to Christ's death than that, and it is good that we have people calling our attention to those other things. The mistake is in seeing things that are complementary as if they were alternatives we must choose between.

    • Inge, what do you mean that in your church some teach Christ death is not substitution? Thats all He could do, as we can not die for our own sins. Also what do you mean, He did not appease Gods anger, The word says "He is angry at the wicked every day" Psalm 7:11. "He made peace through the blood .." Colossians 1:20. Just would like some clarification.
      I know there is lots of false teaching out there, for sure! Thanks.
      I like what you said about living for self, that it's a major battle for us, but (sister) one that's attainable through Christ who is our strength, amen!

  5. The warfare against self is the greatest battle that was ever fought and we have to fight, sin entered thru selfishness and we have to conquer thru self denial in Christ Jesus, we can.


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