What the Bible Teaches



Chapter 520

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Topic 10:   The Abode of Satan

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POINT 10:   Satan and the principalities, the powers, the world-rulers of this darkness, the spiritual hosts of wickedness are in the heavenly places, or heavenlies.

      Ephesians 6:11-12 [11] Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. [12] For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

      Job 1:6 One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them.

      Revelation 12:9 The great dragon was hurled down -- that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.

   The prophecy of this latter verse seems to refer to a time yet to come.

   On the other hand we are told that God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them down to hell.

      2 Peter 2:4 For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment;

   However, it does not say, as in the Authorized Version "the angels that sinned," which might imply all of them, but simply "angels sinning," without specifying whether some or all.

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POINT 20:   Satan goes to and fro in the earth and walks up and down in it.

      Job 1:7 The LORD said to Satan, "Where have you come from?" Satan answered the LORD, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it."

      Compare 1 Peter 5:8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

   The earth seems to be the special field of his activity. As in the coming day, Christ and His Church, though heavenly beings, will rule an earthly kingdom, so now Satan and his hosts, heavenly beings, exercise their activity among an earthly people.

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Topic 20:   The Work of Satan

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POINT 10:   Satan is the author of sin in this world.

      Genesis 3:1-6 [1] Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say, `You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?" [2] The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, [3] but God did say, `You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.'" [4] "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. [5] "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." [6] When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.

      Revelation 12:9 The great dragon was hurled down -- that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.

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POINT 20:   Satan is the author of sickness.

      Acts 10:37-38 [37] You know what has happened throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached -- [38] how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.

      Luke 13:16 Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?

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POINT 30:   Satan has the power of death.

      Hebrews 2:14 Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death -- that is, the devil --

   He is the author of death. Every cemetery and every funeral, and every separation by death, owes its existence to the Devil.

   Note that Satan cannot simply execute those who oppose him.

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POINT 40:   The Devil tempts men to sin. He is the "tempter."

      1 Chronicles 21:1 Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census of Israel.

      Matthew 4:1, 3, 5-6, 8- 9 [1] Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. [3] The tempter came to him and said, "If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread." [5] Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. [6] "If you are the Son of God," he said, "throw yourself down. For it is written: "`He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.'" [8] Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. [9] "All this I will give you," he said, "if you will bow down and worship me."

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POINT 50:   The Devil lays snares for men.

      1 Timothy 3:7 He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil's trap.

      2 Timothy 2:25-26 [25] Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, [26] and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.

      Compare 1 Thessalonians 3:5 For this reason, when I could stand it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith. I was afraid that in some way the tempter might have tempted you and our efforts might have been useless.

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POINT 60:   The Devil puts wicked purposes into the hearts of men.

      Acts 5:3 Then Peter said, "Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land?

      John 13:2 The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus.

   This is, of course, by their consent, or when they leave an opening, e.g., by dabbling in occultic practices such as ouija boards, tarot cards, fortune tellers, astrology, seances, "psychics", etc.

      Ephesians 4:26-27 [26] "In your anger do not sin" : Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, [27] and do not give the devil a foothold.

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POINT 70:   The Devil personally enters into men.

      John 13:27a [27] As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him.

   Satan caricatures God's work.

      John 14:23 Jesus replied, "If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.

   Compare the following two excerpts:

      Ephesians 2:1-2 [1] As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, [2] in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient.

      Philippians 2:12-13 [12] Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed -- not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence -- continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, [13] for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.

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POINT 80:   Satan blinds the minds of the unbelieving so that the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, may not dawn upon them.

      2 Corinthians 4:4 The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

   It is the work of the Holy Spirit to illuminate the minds of men -- especially believers -- and reveal Jesus. It is the work of the Evil One to blind the minds of men -- especially unbelievers -- so that they cannot see the glory that is in Jesus. It is for each individual to say to the work of which he will surrender himself. The awful, almost incredible blindness of men who are intelligent on other subjects to the simplest and plainest truth about Christ is due to this blinding work of Satan.

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POINT 90:   Satan takes away the word out of the hearts of those who hear it but do not understand and hold it fast.

      Mark 4:15 Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them.

      See Matthew 13:19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the seed sown along the path.

   Wherever the word is preached Satan is present, either in person or through his agents, to snatch away the seed sown. It is needful for us to pray to God to keep guard over the seed sown. It is also needful to hold fast to the truth we have heard, lest Satan snatch it away.

      Luke 8:15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.

   It is the work of the Spirit to "bring to remembrance" what Christ has spoken.

      John 14:26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

   It is the work of Satan to make men forget the word. The world and the flesh are quite ready to co-operate with the Devil in this work.

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POINT 100:   The Devil sows weeds in God's field.

      Matthew 13:38-39 [38] The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the sons of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the evil one, [39] and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels.

   God's field is the world. Satan mixes his children up with God's. He does this also in the visible Church. Satan is ever busy corrupting the Church and its doctrine. He gets the woman to mix the leaven in the childrens' meal, and the rotten stuff goes on putrefying, and all is fermented. (Leaven - - yeast -- is the Biblical symbol for false doctrine.)

      Matthew 13:33 He told them still another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like yeast [leaven] that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked all through the dough."

      1 Corinthians 5:6-7 [6] Your boasting is not good. Don't you know that a little yeast [leaven] works through the whole batch of dough? [7] Get rid of the old yeast that you may be a new batch without yeast -- as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed.

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POINT 110:   Satan will give power to the lawless one to utterly deceive the perishing, those who do not receive the love of truth.

      2 Thessalonians 2:9-10 [9] The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, [10] and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.

   Men can have truth or lies, which they prefer. If they will to do God's will, He will give them truth and the Spirit will guide them ultimately into all the truth.

      John 7:17 If anyone chooses to do God's will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own.

      John 16:13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.

   But if men will not have truth Satan will lead them step by step into all manner of delusion and falsehood.

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POINT 120:   Satan has ministers and his church to carry on his work.

      2 Corinthians 11:14-15 [14] And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. [15] It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.

      Revelation 3:9 I will make those who are of the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars -- I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you.

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POINT 130:   Satan, by his messengers, buffets God's servants.

      2 Corinthians 12:7 To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me.

   This, however, results in good to them. It keeps them humble and drives them to prayer.

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POINT 140:   Satan resists the servants of God in the prosecution of their work.

      Zechariah 3:1 Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him.

      Daniel 10:13 But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia.

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POINT 150:   Satan hinders Christ's servants in the carrying out of their desires.

      1 Thessalonians 2:18 For we wanted to come to you -- certainly I, Paul, did, again and again -- but Satan stopped us.

   But good may come of that. This hindering of Paul going to Thessalonica give to the saints there, and to coming generations, this precious epistle.

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POINT 160:   Satan shakes Christ's disciples up and sifts them.

      Luke 22:31 Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat.

   Only good comes of this in the end. Simon came out of Satan's merciless sieve purer wheat than he was before. Satan simply succeeded in sifting some of the chaff out of him.

      Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

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POINT 170:   Satan accuses the brethren before God day and night.

      Revelation 12:9-10 [9] The great dragon was hurled down -- that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. [10] Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down.

   The Greek word for "devil" means "traducer", "accuser", "slanderer." Compare the following:

      Job 1:6-9 [6] One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them. [7] The LORD said to Satan, "Where have you come from?" Satan answered the LORD, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it." [8] Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil." [9] "Does Job fear God for nothing?" Satan replied.

      Job 2:3-5 [3] Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason." [4] "Skin for skin!" Satan replied. "A man will give all he has for his own life. [5] But stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face."

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POINT 180:   The Devil casts Christ's servants into prison.

      Revelation 2:10 Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life.

   Only good need come of that. They are thus tried and purified and obtain the crown of life.

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