Friday, March 12, 2010

Psalm 2: The Struggle Between God and Satan

Dr. David R. ReaganPDFBy Dr. David R. Reagan

In the previous part of this study on Psalm 2, we looked at why the nations of the world are raging against God. Today I'll review the ongoing spiritual war between God and Satan.


Satan's Havoc

The Bible attests to this never-ending cycle of God appointing and Satan attacking. I think, for example, of the tragic story of Saul, the first king of Israel. He began with such promise, having received a special anointing of God's Spirit that even enabled him to prophesy with the prophets (1 Samuel 10:1,6,9-11).

But Satan immediately encouraged Saul's pride and attacked him with a spirit of melancholy that drove him into fits of depression. Out of pride Saul began to "act foolishly," assuming for himself the duties of the priests (1 Samuel 13:8-13). In depression, he turned to mediums and witches for advice rather than relying on the prophets of God. The tragic result was that the Spirit of God departed from him (I Samuel 16:14), and Saul committed suicide on the battlefield (I Samuel 31:4).

In like manner, Solomon began his reign on his knees before the Lord, receiving a special anointing of wisdom and knowledge (2 Chronicles 1:7-12). His future looked so bright.

But Satan came against him, tempting him with worldly riches. Solomon's turning point came in the year when he received 666 talents of gold (I Kings 10:14). From that point on, he became obsessed with three things: riches, women, and military power (I Kings 11:1-8). He ended up doing "what was evil in the sight of the Lord" (I Kings 11:6).

The empire divided following Solomon's death, and during the 209 year history of the northern kingdom of Israel, there was not one king who was considered good in God's sight. The southern kingdom of Judah lasted a hundred years longer, but during its three hundred years, only 8 of its 20 kings were considered righteous by the Lord.


The Continuing Struggle

When the New Testament opens, we find the tug of war between God and Satan continuing. Satan inspires King Herod to slaughter all the babies of Bethlehem in an attempt to cut off the Messiah at His birth.

Later, Satan orchestrates a conspiracy between governing authorities who hated each other. He brings together the Roman governor and the Jewish Sanhedrin, and through their joint efforts he accomplishes the murder of the Messiah.

Satan's triumph was, of course, short lived, for it was overcome by the victory of the Messiah's resurrection. But Satan was not to be deterred for long. He renewed his relentless attacks on God's sovereignty by launching an all out persecution of the Messiah's followers.

When Satan realized that this persecution of the church was only spreading it and increasing its strength, he shifted to a new strategy — the wedding of the church and the state so that the church could be compromised. This occurred around 331 A.D., and it marked the beginning of the dark ages when the church became subservient to the state. The church quickly became penetrated by the world, and its testimony for Christ became secondary to the pursuit of politics.

But, thank God, Jesus had made an important promise concerning His church. He had promised that "the gates of Hades shall not overpower it" (Matthew 16:18). So, even during the darkest years of the Middle Ages, there was always a faithful remnant preserved by the Spirit of God.

Finally, the day came when Martin Luther nailed his theses to the door and called for a return to God's Word. Satan was put on the defensive once again as the church experienced reformation and began to send out missionaries all over the world.


The Conflict in Our Time

As the 20th Century dawned, Satan went back on the offensive. He orchestrated one of his greatest victories with the birth of Communism in Russia in 1917. Satanism became incarnate in the atheistic ideology of the Communists as they attempted to exterminate both the church and God's Word.

Simultaneously, Satan launched an internal attack on the Western democracies by energizing the philosophy of Secular Humanism. The Judaic-Christian foundation of Western Civilization came under direct attack from within while the Communists hammered at it from without.

The Communist threat has collapsed from the weight of its own internal inconsistencies. But Satan has provided no breathing space. He continues to promote the advance of Secular Humanism, and he has brought about a resurgence of Islam.


The Focus of the Conflict

Perhaps the clearest example of Satan's determination to exert his dominion in defiance of God's will is to be found in his opposition to the re-establishment of the nation of Israel.

Throughout the Old Testament God promises repeatedly that in the end times He will regather the Jewish people from the four corners of the earth to the land of Israel (see Isaiah 11:10-12 and Ezekiel 36:22-37:12). God reveals that His purpose is to do a mighty work in the hearts of the Jews that will result in a remnant accepting His Son as their Messiah (Zechariah 12:10, 13:1 and Romans 9:27, 11:1-6, 25-32).

Satan hates this purpose of God because he hates the Jewish people with a passion. His hatred is fueled by the fact that God has used the Jewish people as a vehicle to bless all the nations of the world. Through the Jews, God gave the world the Scriptures. Through the Jews, God gave the Messiah.

Satan is determined to destroy the Jewish people so that God cannot keep His promise to bring a remnant to salvation. This is the reason that Satan is orchestrating all the nations of the earth against Israel today. God has raised up a nation that Satan, as the prince of this world, is determined to destroy.


Rage vs. Laughter

I am personally outraged by Satan's many attempts to frustrate and defeat the will of God in Israel and throughout the earth today. I often feel so frustrated that I want to shout, "How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging" by sending your Son back to reign in glory and majesty and righteousness and justice?" (Revelation 6:10)

The only way I am able to restrain my anger is to remind myself of what God is doing in Heaven while I fume over Satan's plots on this earth. Do you know what the Scriptures say God is doing?

He is laughing! Yes, God is sitting on His throne laughing — not because He doesn't care, but because He has the world's events under control. This may be hard to believe, but I can prove it to you.


In the next part of this study on Psalm 2, I'll look at verse 4 and the first reason why God is laughing at His enemies.

[Watch on Christ in Prophecy!]

13 comments:

sek4110 said...

I look forward to part two of this! God bless your efforts!

Laura said...

Good heavens! Why even bother worrying about what Satan is up to? He's been DEFEATED!

No, thanks! I'd rather "fix my eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith" and "set my mind on things above." Now, THOSE things are worthy of our attention.

son of thunder said...

Amen, Laura.

I was just thinking that it's not really a struggle between God and Satan. It's too lopsided. No, it's more like Satan's struggle with God.

DrNofog said...

Laura...
Although Satan is defeated, we are still stuck here in the world with him and we are commanded to be on our guard, know what he's up to, and be wary of him so we don't get blind-sided and 'catch one up-side the head'.

"Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, [ie. keeping up on what the Adversary is doing] and harmless as doves." Matthew 10:16,
"Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil." Ephesians 6:11,
and "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." 1 Peter 5:8

Besides, you, like the rest of us, like to come to these prophecy websites because it's exciting and uplifting to find more pieces of the puzzle and seeing where they fit in!

And we're actually commanded to get excited about it all: Luke 21:28, "And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; [Old Eng. for 'git happy'] for your redemption draweth nigh."

DrNofog said...

thunder,
No contest, like a toddler with a Grand-master, clueless on the real rules, pushing the chess pieces around all willy-nilly...
And, having a temper about it all too!

son of thunder said...

LOL

Laura said...

DrNofog,

Yes, I come to these Web sites, but not to learn about Satan. I come to learn more about my Father, my Savior and Life, my Holy Spirit Counselor!

Besides, those who identify counterfeit money don't study the counterfeit. They study the real deal. If I'm "studying" Christ, then I'll KNOW a counterfeit when I see one!

Again, no thanks to studying Satan. I'll fix my eyes on my lovely Jesus!!! He who has forgiven me of ALL my sins, who has made me a new holy and righteous creation, who has seated me with Him in the heavenly realms, who is my full armor, who has given me EVERYTHING I need for life and godliness, who has made all the fullness of the Godhead to dwell in me--these things I will think on!

DrNofog said...

Dr. David. said...
"...[Satan] has brought about a resurgence of Islam."

What a timely article! -- And, just by a *'coincidence'* on this very same today...:

The Revival of the Ottoman Empire now coming off the back burner...

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=127521

"Famed PLO terrorist-turned-Christian Walid Shoebat is warning that the United States needs to be watching...the Islamic leaders of Turkey."

[Turkish leader]..."Erdogan is saying 1.5 billion Muslims are waiting for the Turkish government to arise... "The youth movement believes that Turkey is the hub from which Islam must rise again,"


And then again, just by another amazing, timely, coincidence today...:

I kept thinking "Turkey...?, Turkey...?, Turkey...where did I see that recently?!?

Mitchell... had posted this link a number of articles back: -- http://kenraggio.com/KRPN-GreenHorse.html

"It is said that if this green banner of Mohammed is ever raised above the Mosque in Istanbul, it is a sign to the entire Muslim world that it is time to go to war against Christians throughout the world.

"The raising of the green standard is a call which none may disobey, without sacrificing, as the Koran calls it, all hopes of Paradise..."

Islam = Is Islam "The "Green" Horse of Revelation"???

hartdawg said...

few things, 1st, its interesting nofog used a chess analogy, i was reading this passage to a new christian 5 days ago and he came to the conclusion himself its like a chess game already one. we`re just going thru the motions. the war is won but there are still battles. we win some and lose some. 2nd, islam is not the "green" (pale)horse in revelation. by this time psalm83/isaiah17 and Gog/magog will have been faught and God will be judging all the false Gods including allah.

son of thunder said...

DrNoFog, I never was good at chess. Now checkers...there's a man's game.

DrNofog said...

Laura,
Dear sister, do I really come across that obtuse in my discourse?
I did not mean this in any way to be offensive to you.
I quoted the first couple of verses of many that came to mind.
I did not create them, I did not misconstrue them, I just posted them.

Since they are the Word of the Lord, I take it that they are, in fact, commands, and not just offered advice.
What do they mean to you?

Your analogy of the Secret Service's training is correct in as much as it is the most basic, first level of training. They see and handle it so much that they can feel the textural differences with their eyes closed.

I know your heart, on what you intended to convey, but you chose very strong words: "learn about Satan", "studying Satan" in your disapproval. I only hoped to convey the idea of a circumspect [Ephesians 5:15] awareness of what the adversary "is up to", and to "be wary".

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 2 Timothy 3:16

Jesus is our incarnate Word and He authored All scripture, both OT & NT, so that we can see Him in His glory above all the events of heaven and earth, throughout all time. Yet, the scriptures record tremendous wickedness and occultic evil-doings... What are we to do? Should we do away with the whole counsel of God, and have a heavily redacted Bible, or like some fringe groups, toss out the entire OT "because it's been done away with by the NT?

1 Corinthians 10:11
Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the age are come.

2 Timothy 2:15
Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Acts 17:11
These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.


In all the tremendous levels of evil that I see, both in the past and in the daily current events, I still find that "it's exciting and uplifting" to see the prophetic fabric of our "foundation" unfolding towards the eventual trampling of Satan beneath our feet, to the glory of our Messiah.
Shalom.

[PS. Don't be too harsh on me in your next post... :-)]

Anonymous said...

Darn it, Dr Nofog. I had to look up the word "obtuse".

Now I'm gonna have to find an excuse to use it somewhere.

Worse, I just discovered it describes someone I know very well!

rg

Laura said...

DrNoFog,

No offense at all intended. Nor is my post harsh in any way. It is my explanation of why I choose to focus entirely on Jesus. If YOU choose differently, then that is your prerogative. I'm not trying to tell you (or anyone else) what they should or shouldn't do. In fact, I strive very hard NOT to tell other believers what to do (I don't like being manipulated and controlled in that way, and I refuse to try those same disgusting tactics on others).

Again, my post is an explanation of why *I* choose to fix my eyes on Jesus--nothing more, nothing less.