For Your Consideration
Hear a Lie, Tell a Lie
I do not look at life as a dark experience where I am called to suffer hardship. Yet the fact is, I along with all of you, from time to time writhe over our difficulties. Without being overly negative but seeking to be as realistic as possible, I believe life for most people is naturally an unending extended struggle varying in intensity and ranging from the cradle to the grave. It is not a call to suffer; it is simply a part of doing life. It is a human problem and yet it is not totally a human problem. It may be a struggle within us, but it is not necessarily between us. The conflict is not against flesh & blood.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Ephesians 6:12 puts it negatively first; not against flesh & blood. Why the negative first? Maybe because most of our problems appear to have to do with others. Think about it. Most of your headaches and heartbreaks are over people!
Paul first tell us what it is NOT & then he tells us what it IS. There is set against the entire human race certain principalities and powers, world rulers of darkness. They are the wicked spirits in high places. They are the enemies we are ultimately up against. And it is not just followers of Jesus who are opposed by these entities, but every person, everywhere. The whole race is opposed by the principalities and powers, that is, the world rulers of this present darkness. It is in this teaching that Paul echoes the resounding testimony of Scripture.
These world rulers of the present darkness are headed by the devil, whom Scripture seems to present as a fallen angel of malevolent power and cunning and cleverness. That is the teaching of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and especially in Genesis and Revelation. Thus, this teaching is not limited to Paul. For example John the apostle records Jesus’ words:
You are of your father, the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires. He was a murderer from the beginning and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies," John 8:44
The devil is no mystery to Jesus – He met him and has him pegged- He is a liar and a murderer.
According to Paul the devil is the god of this world.
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 2 Corinthians 4:3-4.
In what ways would the Liar be considered the god of this world? Without looking into the sovereign plan of God which allows Satan to move freely in the world with only certain restraints, it should be noted that the Liar has the ear of humankind. The world listens to him, to everything he says. But the devil does not tell the world the truth but lies; very clever, very beautiful, a very attractive lies which makes the world drool with desire. HE LIES-HE DISTORTS-HE MISREPRESENTS.
No other explanation comes to grips with the problems of life as this one does. No other explanation of the evil of the world takes in to account all the aspects of human life. Humanity has an internal bent to hear a lie and tell a lie. I do not hesitate to make a statement as strong as that. Anything else is superficial, if not artificial. Anything less is shallow and inadequate, if not inherently wrong-headed and unreal.
And yet many who might read this will dismiss it out of hand with laughs of derision- LOL…the boogy-man is a liar. Many who ‘believe in God’ can’t digest a devil. He has a place in Hollywood but not in our neighborhoods. He may be philosophized but not theologized. And yet he continues to speak while the world listens. And look at the mess we are in.