God the Father sent Jesus into the world for a reason. The Bible says in 1 John 3:8, “For this purpose was the Son of God manifest, to destroy the works of the evil one.” Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil. One demon sensed this when he cried out through a man in the synagogue, “Have you come to destroy us?” (Mark 1).
In order to overcome the devil’s works, Jesus needed to overcome severe temptation. This he did firstly in the wilderness at the end of his 40 day fast. He did it by saying, “It is written” and following it up with a quotation from God’s Word. In this way, Jesus was a model for us when we are tempted with the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, or the pride of life.
Jesus went on to cast out demons wherever he taught. This was his way of demonstrating and advancing the kingdom of God. “If I by the finger of God drive out demons, then the Kingdom of God has come upon you”. No demon was ever a match for Jesus.
Jesus then gave power and authority over evil spirits to his 12 key disciples (Matthew 10:1). He sent them out with instructions to cast out demons, taking no money for this service. Later he gave authority to 70, enabling them to do the same works. Finally, after his resurrection, he gave authority to those who believe in His name to drive out demons. This includes you and me, if we believe.
Yet the biggest critical blow against Satan’s interests happened paradoxically when it seemed that all was lost. For when Jesus was crucified at the hands of sinful men, undoubtedly Satan thought he had won a great victory. Instead it turned out to be his greatest defeat. For by killing an innocent, sinless man, Satan overstepped his authority. By overstepping his authority, he lost it. Jesus now has all authority in heaven and earth (Matthew 28:18) and when we go in His name, under his instructions, his power and authority is upon us. Now all those who are “in Jesus” escape the domination of Satan. Rather than being condemned to and endless slavery to evil and corruption, true Christians can take authority over the works of the devil and destroy them in Jesus’ name, driving Satan and his demons out. Yet the disciple is not greater than his master. If Jesus needed the Word, the Spirit and a strong consecration to God’s will – then so do we, if we expect to have effective victory over Satan.
At the cross Jesus also took the curse for us, so that the blessing of Abraham might come upon us, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit, through faith (Galatians 3:13,14). We are legally delivered from all curses by the cross of Christ, by the blood of the Son of God that was shed. The blood of Christ breaks the rights of Satan, as soon as we submit to God.
Satan had us in his hands because we had willingly departed from God of our own free choice. Many of us went so far as to hate and reject God actively. God has no pleasure in the death of a sinner, neither in the calamity that disobedience brings. But he cannot be just if he refuses to punish a determined rebel who just keeps rejecting God’s own legitimate authority. It is God’s world by right of creation and He is the only One wise enough, good enough and caring enough to know how it should be run. We are fools to ignore God’s Word, and if we do, we harm ourselves. Not only that, but we open the door for both satanic influence in our lives, and God’s wrath. The fruits of sin are not usually immediately obvious, which is why so many people are not afraid to sin against God. But without a doubt, people sow what they reap.
Rebellion brought us under God’s judgment and the curse. It brought us into a place where Satan could lord it over us, and afflict us with all kinds of bad things. A sick soul and a sick body, for example. It was God’s love and mercy which drove Jesus to the cross. There He did something about it, by cancelling our debt to Satan by paying it Himself. Satan’s rights were destroyed – now he can only operate by deception and by continuing to get people to give him power by turning to sinful ways. As Christians we are in there with a fighting chance. Through the application of God’s word, done in faith, we really can overcome Satan and enjoy more and more of the abundant life Jesus promises, beginning even now.
Praise the Lord for his great love for us! Who would not want to follow and serve our God?
If you would like to receive the benefits of what Christ did for you, may I suggest using the some of the prayers in the ‘Your Commmitment’ section of this site.