Ephesians 6:11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle 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. (KJV)
We have looked at two categories of Satan’s schemes to keep lost folks lost and saved folks ineffective. Temptation and manipulation are unfortunately effective against the mortal race. If those don’t work, though, Satan and his minions get more personally involved. They use oppression to coerce or force men and women, boys and girls, to give up on trusting Christ. Oppression comes in two forms—external and internal. We are familiar with, throughout the ages, Christianity being the target of attacks from godless rulers, cultures and powerful individuals. This is a type of external oppression that is broadly known from history. Satan has no desire to have believers gain a foothold in an otherwise pagan (devil-ruled) culture. Satan has persecuted the Jews and the church because of their unique relationship with God. God has afforded to men the gift of redemption through faith in Jesus. Satan has no such option and it angers him. His jealousy against mankind having been created in the first place galls him, then to add insult to injury, mankind is offered forgiveness—provided by the very death and resurrection of God’s Son. That was never offered him (nor will it ever be) after his fall!
It helps to understand where Satan is coming from in order to know his mind set. From Isaiah, we see into the events of Satan’s fall (using his proper name, Lucifer):
Isaiah 14:12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! 13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. 15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit. 16 They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms; 17 That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners? 18 All the kings of the nations, even all of them, lie in glory, every one in his own house. 19 But thou art cast out of thy grave like an abominable branch, and as the raiment of those that are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go down to the stones of the pit; as a carcass trodden under feet. (KJV)
From Ezekiel we see (speaking of the king of Tyre but obviously referring to the power that drove Him—Satan who was in Eden as referred to in vs. 12):
Ezekiel 28:12 Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. 13 Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. 14 Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. 15 Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee. 16 By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire. 17 Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee. 18 Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffic; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee. 19 All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more. (KJV)
satan’s anger at us is ultimately based on his anger at be deposed and deprived of his desired position—God. Because humans are offered adoption as Children of God, we are hated beyond measure. As such, we have become the targets of that wrath. His sole desire is to deprive us of the relationship with The true God that he wanted to be.
This is just the start of the study understanding oppression as a tool in Satan’s arsenal. More next time,
In Him, Jerry