God with us in Victory
We have a powerful enemy. Satan is his name, that fallen angel and his cohorts who are plotting our ruin every day. We need to know our enemy with God’s help.
Peter encourages us to stand firm in the faith as we live in this world in the presence of our enemy:
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.
(1 Peter 5:8-11).
We are also reminded in the story of Job that Satan need’s God’s permission in whatever He does. God says to the devil, Behold, all that he has is in your power, only do not put forth your hand on him.
Within these boundaries set by God, Job endured the attack of Satan and learned that all this was for the purpose of knowing God.
Then Job replied to the Lord: “I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted. You asked, ‘Who is this that obscures my plans without knowledge?’ Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me to know. “You said, ‘Listen now, and I will speak; I will question you, and you shall answer me.’ My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you.”
In the story of Peter Jesus says to Simon Peter:
Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded to sift you like wheat; but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; and you, when once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers
Jesus gave permission to Satan to allow a faith strengthening experience for Peter that would make him the leader that God was moulding him to be to the glory of God.
Peter would testify to this in his letter to the churches:
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
(1 Peter 5:3-7)
God permitted Satan’s fall, not because he was helpless to stop it, but because he had a purpose for it. Since God is never taken off guard, His permissions are always purposeful. If He chooses to permit something, He does so for a reason — an infinitely wise reason. God is sovereign over Satan, and therefore Satan’s will does not move without God’s permission. And therefore every move of Satan is part of God’s overall purpose and plan.
The final acts of God against Satan and his demons are revealed to us in Revelation:
And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.
(Revelation 20: 1-3)
First Satan will be imprisoned in the Abyss for a thousand years:
When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—and to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore. They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
Then a final battle, Satan will be thrown into the lake of burning sulfur.
Let’s take heart, the Bible says: The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet (Romans 16:20)