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Wednesday: Unseen Powers at Work — 12 Comments

  1. Most of us have been surprised at how quickly the world situation can change. In 2019 a new coronavirus surfaced in Wuhan, China and within a space of months international borders were closed, air traffic reduced to almost zero. In many cases, individual freedoms have been reduced in an effort to control its spread. In the face of those restrictions, we are seeing compliance in some countries and open rebellion in others. Even newsreaders and commentators are saying "We live in perilous times!", making them sound like religious prophets.

    I am not an alarmist but I do see the instability being used by evil to pit people against one another. This is not a time to embrace conspiracy theories but an opportunity to share and help one another, particularly those who are vulnerable in our community.

    There are unseen powers at work. I saw evidence of that when I saw people motivated to buy and distribute food for the elderly. When efforts were made by young people in our church to ensure that online Sabbath School was just an interesting and personal as regular Sabbath School. When a call was made to provide extra help for the homeless in our area to ensure they were looked after in the period of isolation. God, the Great Unseen Power, is at work.

    We often refer only to evil powers when we talk about unseen powers. I am reminded of the story of Elisha when the local warlord and his militia tried to capture him. His servant was afraid when he saw the frightening array of armed thugs who had come to collect them, but:

    And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. 2 Kings 6:17 NIV

    Elisha's intercessory prayer was to open the eyes of his servant to see the Lord at work on their behalf. There are indeed unseen powers at work and we can be ensured that the Great Unseen Power, God, is on our side as we share and encourage those who are frightened in our current crisis.

    My prayer for both myself and the church at this time is that our eyes are open to the opportunities to act on the Lord's behalf, not is spreading conspiracy theories, but to help and share with those in need.

    Amen!(64)
  2. Thanks Maurice for shedding more light on the lesson. Indeed we should not just consider the evil unseen powers but the good unseen powers as well cos some of us after studying today's lesson, will take home with the negative forces and forget about the positive forces that are there to work in us and support us.

    Daniel had a swift response to his prayers according to Dan 10:12
    Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.

    Intercessory prayers have quick response than praying for oneself, considering the intent of prayers.

    Amen!(6)
  3. Maurice Ashton thank you for your thoughts. It is a great reminder in the deeds of those around us that God is still in control and, if we allow Him, He will help.

    My prayer each day is for God to lead and guide, our world, our church, my family and myself.

    Amen!(12)
  4. Although we cannot physically see it, but the battle between good and evil is happening 100% of the time around us. And we are directly involved in this according to what we are connected to. It is necessary to have consciousness about what we get a hold of more, either good or evil. Depending on which one we choose and feed from the most, that's probably what comes out of us more often too. Get a hold of Love more, the fountain of life, because God is Love!

    Amen!(12)
  5. As far as who is the "prince of the kingdom of Persia" What great honor was shown to Daniel by the Majesty of Heaven! He comforts his trembling servant, and assures him that his prayer was heard in Heaven, and that in answer to that fervent petition, the angel Gabriel was sent to affect the heart of the Persian king. The monarch had resisted the impressions of the Spirit of God during the three weeks while Daniel was fasting and praying, but Heaven's Prince, the archangel, Michael, was sent to turn the heart of the stubborn king to take some decided action to answer the prayer of Daniel. {RH, February 8, 1881 par. 31}

    But there was Satan working behind the scenes also:

    By this we see that heavenly agencies have to contend with hindrances before the purpose of God is fulfilled in its time. The king of Persia was controlled by the highest of all evil angels. He refused, as did Pharaoh, to obey the word of the Lord. Gabriel declared, He withstood me twenty-one days by his representations against the Jews. But Michael came to his help, and then he remained with the kings of Persia, holding the powers in check, giving right counsel against evil counsel. {11MR 99.2}

    Amen!(4)
  6. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus. Phil 2:5

    I got up this morning, fell back to sleep, woke up again probably from the noise coming from the neighbor house. I looked out of the window and saw two men at work, they don't look like me, they were in close proximity to each other, and none wearing a face mask. I thought to myself, should I say anything to them or not? Should I be a loving educator? Will they listen to me? Mind you, I didn't say my prayer as yet.

    Unseen Powers at Work-The Great Controversy

    This battle began in heaven with Christ and Lucifer, then the battle came down to earth and is with us presently. This battle goes on 24/7 knowing or unknowing to us. Remember, this battle takes on several different forms depending on where we live, who we associate ourselves with, our outlook in life, our purpose in life, where we work etc, etc. The battle between good and evil uses people but the force behind the people is unseen. E.g Eve in Eden and eating the unforbidden fruit, Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, etc. The entire universe's existence is about; the powers of good and evil.

    What I realized is, there is a time for everything under the sun. Ecc 3:1. Time has a starting and a finishing. Time has to do with numbers. The story is told about the children of Isreal in Egypt as servants and be in bondage. The 430 years was ending and it was time for them to go free. They had served their time according to the bible. But the dark forces of Evil which were working behind Pharaoh was trying to enslave them again. Despite God was always with them and working for them he stepped in and shew Pharaoh, which was a King and a human who he was. The people could have been delivered by many other means but God chooses that method of deliverance. Big, great, and marvelous. We saw (Jesus)miracles and (Satan)magic at work, miracles won. But Satan never gave up, he and his angels followed the people in the wilderness, forty days became forty years. Of all the six thousand + numbered, only two made it to the promised land. Good and evil will rage and get worst but will end up as good being the winner.

    When we/I am at sleep it rages around me. Ps 91:1-16 spoke about this clearly. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day. (Evil).
    For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. (Good).

    The powers of good and evil are in our present time. Until the final destruction of Satan and his angels, then this battle will be over. Paul spoke about it as real as real can get. Eph 6:12-18. He also shows us what we need to be victorious.

    Sometimes people believe they are a match for Satan and they can beat him on his battleground. My people, it has never happened and it will never happen. Satan put those thoughts in our heads so as to lure us away from Jesus to him. He fights unfairly. Until we find ourselves doing what we didn't intend to do. Even Jesus was unable to fight satan as a human. Daily he had to commune with his father and be directed by Angels.

    We now have the word of God to guide us. The time has come or will come for some of us to make hard but decisive decisions. Hard decisions as stated in the bible because Satan angels are at work with either our spouses, children, grans, friends, and families. We love them as the bible says, but we have to love the Lord more and follow after his words. Pray for them constantly but don't get suck into their evil ways.
    Satan is behind every wrong thing. Without spiritual eyes we cant decern right from wrong. Many times wrong appears as right. Despite a head of state or leader might be doing wrong most of the time, he/she might say something that is right. Should we not follow that which is right? Shouldn't Christians be the leaders in what is right?

    Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Phil 2:2 It is so sad when Christians who speak about love and uses the same quarterly can be so divisive and have so many divisions even among themselves. (Satan incites division). Division about the color of one's skin, ethnicity, race, soc-economic divisions. Even in some areas, harsh towards immigrants.

    One can cast out an evil spirit from someone and the person recover, but who can get rid of the evil forces among Christians?
    But all is not lost, Christ is coming for a glorious church, the bride. Those who have washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb. Good will triumph.

    Amen!(8)
  7. One of the issues that Paul discusses with the Ephesians is the unseen powers in the spiritual realm. Satan and his minions are real, and they control their many followers in this world, because these people have chosen to live according to Satan’s ways.
    Paul makes two important points
    1) Jesus is the King of the Kingdom of the Spiritual Realm, now and in the age to come
    2) Jesus has defeated the Prince of the Principality of this world; the war is won but the battles continue
    3) Although the Prince is defeated, for the time being he is still trying to take prisoners
    4) The Good News is that the LORD has provided us with armor to defend us from Satan’s schemes

    Eph 1:20-21 ISV God raised Jesus from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realm. (21) He is far above every ruler, authority, power, dominion, and every name that can be named, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.

    Eph 2:1-2 ISV You used to be dead because of your offenses and sins, (2) that you once practiced as you lived according to the ways of this present world and according to the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now active in those who are disobedient.

    Eph 3:10 ISV He did this so that now, through the church, the wisdom of God in all its variety might be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realm

    Eph 6:11-12 ISV Put on the whole armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the devil's strategies. For our struggle is not against human opponents, but against rulers, authorities, cosmic powers in the darkness around us, and evil spiritual forces in the heavenly realm.

    Amen!(5)
  8. I have a personal story of being witness to a spiritual battle being fought. I will try to make it as brief as possible.
    As a teenager, our neighbors had a daughter that I was good friends with. Not a church going family by any means, but good people. For her 13th birthday, she had a slumber party, and being right next door I was allowed to go. Around 11:00, the other girls, about 6 of them, started asking if we were going to have a seance at midnight. I asked what that was, wanting to know if they were talking about a “real” seance. They were. Being too late (I thought) to go home, I crawled into my sleeping bag, pretending to go to sleep, I began to pray. They began the process of getting in a circle to begin the seance. I continued to pray. Amazingly, they one by one chickened out, much to my relief. BUT then proceeded with another spiritualism “thing”. This involved, in the end, someone floating up to the ceiling, representing their dead spirit floating to heaven. I continued praying, and as long as I was awake and praying, this “thing” wouldn’t work, someone would start giggling, etc. As I prayed, sweating by now, and being exhausted from it all, I fell asleep. I don’t know how long I slept, maybe just moments, but then I was awakened. What woke me up, was my friends brother, hitting the light fixture on the ceiling, making a noise when he hit it. The second I woke up, he dropped to the ground. You have to remember this was girls who could in no way reach the ceiling, let alone life a human up to the ceiling. As scary as that whole thing was, it showed me what the power of one praying Christian could do. Satan had no power as long as I was praying. I often have wondered why I don’t utilize that power more often. The battle is real and Gods power is real, all we have to do is ask.

    Amen!(18)
  9. When I realized that the real struggle in this life is between the Lord and Satan, this was a great relieve. Understanding that heaven-sent, spiritual forces exist in our world that are assigned to engage on my behalf in the battle over my soul was very comforting. Now, I am very grateful for their protection, though it took a while to learn to trust the side fighting on my behalf. John 14:20 - The Holy Spirit is the presence of Jesus in us.

    Act.18:9,10 talks about Paul in a vision being encouraged by Jesus to: 'be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: (10)for I am with thee and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee, for I have much people in this city. This is an example that Jesus uses people filled with His Spirit to come to our aid when called upon.

    There is much written about heavenly beings that come to our aid; and not only when there is an emergency. We have been assured that we have Christ's protection - Heb.13:5,6 - ..'I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. (6)So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me'.

    For all of us needing a reminder in times of uncertainty, read Psalm 91:1-16 - (2) 'I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God, in him will I trust'. (11) For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
    Heb.1:1-14 provides us with inside about the angels and powers in heaven. It gives us a glimpse into the heavenly realms and its inhabitants. These powers have been given assignments to engage on our behalf - (14) Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?

    Eph.6:10-18 - God does not leave us unprepared. He provides our armor to stand "against the whiles of the devil". He knows that the battle is not "against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."
    v.14-18 explains what our weapons are in this spiritual warfare: Truth, Righteousness, Gospel of Peace, Faith, v.17: 'And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God'. v.(18) 'Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints'.

    This armor is not for the fainthearted - it is meant as a battle-armor and to be worn at all times. If we are to remain standing in the many spiritual battles we find ourselves in, this is the armor which will protect us from being overtaken by the forces of darkness.
    Some of us are called to stand in the frontlines, others are working as the auxiliary. The watchword for all of us is - be prepared, be alert and always pray in the Spirit so to remain in the presence of the Lord.

    Amen!(6)

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