Wednesday, June 19, 2013
OF POWERS AND PRINCIPALITIES
Ephesians 6:12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
The above passage has many layers of truth. The first thing that sticks out is that our battles, as believers, is not with man or organizations of man, or even movements of man, but of the spiritual element behind the man and his organizations and movements. For instance, the abortion issue, in the past, misguided people have taken it upon themselves to target women's clinics or even murder doctors who perform abortions. This cannot be right on any level, I do not believe that any thinking person could conceive of Jesus standing in front of an abortion clinic screaming "murderer" in someone's face.
My intention is not to discuss the very important issue of the unborn's right to life, but to make the point that our enemy does not wear skin. Our enemy is the hater of our souls who devised the wickedness of abortion in order to destroy innocents, Satan. Our true battle position is what the world would call a position of weakness, on our knees. Spiritual battle is a healthy, balanced prayer life.
What most people do not realize is that when Adam fell in the Garden of Eden the authority that God gave man over the earth transferred to Satan and his angels. When Christ was tempted in the wilderness, remember, Satan offered Him all the kingdoms of the earth. How could he offer that if he was not in control of them and how could that have been a real temptation if the offer was not valid, surely, the creator of heaven and earth, Jesus, would know whether or not Satan had the authority to make that offer. Satan was offering Jesus a shortcut to what the Father already promised, a shortcut that avoided the pain and humiliation of the cross.
The other thing that strikes me in this passage is that it emphatically states "rulers, authorities and cosmic powers." This world, and all of it's nations, are ruled by cosmic powers, also known as demonic spirits. Consider the passage in Daniel 10:13 where the angel Gabriel tells Daniel that he was detained due to a battle with the Prince of Persia and it was only after the angel Michael came to assist in battle that he was able to get free and come to Daniel with a message from God. It is obvious that the Prince of Persia spoken of here is of the cosmic realm, what man could detain an angel in battle for 21 days? Also, in Ezekiel 28 we see a prophecy against the king of Tyre. Even a cursory reading of that passage reveals that it is not a man that is being spoken of but a cosmic being.
This all sounds like bad news for mankind and in this present age, it is, but for followers of Christ, this is a temporary problem. In fact, the good news is that the positions of authority that are occupied by these evil spirits will one day be occupied by the children of God, the church!
Remember the story that Jesus told about the man who went away and entrusted his servants with a certain amount of talents. Upon the man's return, he rewarded his servants with rulership of cities determined by the profitable use of the talents entrusted. One day, those of us who serve diligently will be set as co-rulers with Christ as He reigns over the nations. The power of the cosmic forces that now rule over the nations will be broken and that authority will be granted to Christ by His heavenly Father and we will also be set as rulers, according to our stewardship now.
The message in this is that though we live in a broken world, one day, our Savior will return and destroy the enemy's strongholds once and for all and He will rule the nations and His followers will also be given authority over His domain. Our battle is temporary, our victory is assured and our enemy is not the sinners around us, in fact they are our mission. Remember, believer, we wrestle not against flesh and blood and our battle belongs to the LORD. Pray pray pray and wait for our glorious redemption.
Join me in the plea of John the Revelator, "Amen, Come Lord Jesus!"