Satan and evil have an expiration date. This is not conjecture, wishful thinking, or a nice platitude. This, my friends, is part of the Good News!
Yet, only God holds the time stamp.
The One who ushered in the Kingdom through a holy conception and quiet incarnation in a sleepy town called Bethlehem. The One who from the beginning knows the end date of evil and sent His Son to write the Good News of the gospels with His life, death, and resurrection. The one true God is the only One who knows the end of evil, when Satan and his minions will be drowned in a lake of sulfurous fire.
“Then the devil, who had deceived them, was thrown into the fiery lake of burning sulfur, joining the beast and the false prophet. There they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.”
(Revelation 20:10 NLT)
Nevertheless, we often forget that Satan, along with the other fallen angels, are God’s created beings who once stood in holy obedience to a sovereign God. Perhaps the first fall wasn’t from grace in the garden, perhaps it was from the angel armies of the spiritual realm.
Coveting and jealousy always lead us down the path to misery and self-destruction.
Yet, right in the heart of God’s redemption story, from the fall of mankind by two to the rising of mankind by countless millions, stands a cross. Let us not overlook the pivotal event where one death sentence bore prophecy to another.
The death and atoning work of Jesus Christ on the cross is the central event in God’s eternal plan, from the beginning. When Jesus proclaimed from the cross, “It is finished”, he both fulfilled prophecy and spoke prophecy forward!
The great I AM, who was, is, and forever will be, with His arms fully extended, hands nailed to the cross, reached back to the beginning to save those dead in their trespasses and reached forward to the end of this age to save those lost in their sin. This prophetic proclamation from the cross will be heard again according to Revelation.
“And he also said, ‘It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End.’”
(Revelation 21:6 NLT)
Spiritual death, hell, and the grave were defeated in a span of three days from the cross to the resurrection. An event that literally shook the foundation of the devil’s domain.
The victory is won! Now the devil’s only consolation prize is retribution.
This means believers are a triple Trinity threat to the devil’s schemes. Whereas Satan has full access to an unbeliever’s heart, mind, soul, and strength, believers who accept Christ as the only way, the truth, and the life everlasting with God, sealed by the Holy Spirit for the day of redemption, have the supernatural boundary of the Holy Spirit protecting their souls, through which Satan is not permitted to cross.
This is why, as believers, we cannot afford to leave one piece of God’s armor in the closet! Satan uses doubt, deception, confusion, and perversion of the truth to try to render us ineffective for the God’s kingdom. A kingdom that is both here and yet to come. Spiritual warfare wages in the kingdom every day, mostly unbeknownst to believers.
“For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12 NLT)
Conversely, unbelievers are not necessarily a threat to the devil. Sadly, many are puppets on a temporary playground being used for the devil’s devices. We must remember this when we, as believers, face persecution. Satan hates an obedient disciple.
So, how do we prepare for persecution? How to we avoid becoming discouraged about the hard realities of being a follower of Christ? How do we hold fast to hope?
We stay the course. We keep our eyes on Jesus. We trust in the goodness of a holy God.
“Let the one who is doing harm continue to do harm; let the one who is vile continue to be vile; let the one who is righteous continue to live righteously; let the one who is holy continue to be holy.”
(Revelation 22:11 NLT)
God is purifying His Church! An ongoing prophecy of epic proportions whose evidence we will see by the multitudes in heaven. A vision given to Daniel hundreds of years before Christ.
“Many will be purified, cleansed, and refined by these trials. But the wicked will continue in their wickedness, and none of them will understand. Only those who are wise will know what it means.”
(Daniel 12:10 NLT)
Be encouraged, dear Christians, who know and love the Truth personified! There is a promise and a hope for the end of evil.
“Many of those whose bodies lie dead and buried will rise up, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting disgrace. Those who are wise will shine as bright as the sky, and those who lead many to righteousness will shine like the stars forever.”
(Daniel 12:2-3 NLT)
I pray you will arise to everlasting life! In the end, the last fall will be that of evil. Forever.