The battle between the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan is heating up as never before. I believe this is because we are nearing the return of Christ. It also means we cannot remain complacent or stagnant in our Christian commitment. If evil is growing more powerful and prevalent, our spiritual light and maturity must increase to protect us from the encroaching deceptions.
Understanding your enemy, and his tactics has never been more important. The enemy is becoming bolder and more aggressive in a darkening world, to the point of publicly defaming and ridiculing Christianity and Christians. Even now, Christians are being physically attacked in Israel, as Netanyahu has made sharing the gospel, a crime worthy of prison.
The unsaved, at best, have an erroneous perspective of what is happening spiritually. At worst, they have a complete void of recognition of the spiritual war that is currently being fought. And sadly, most will remain oblivious right to the end.
In Matthew 24, Jesus describes society’s behavior at the time of His return, and likens it to the flood of Noah. “For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.” Matthew 24:38-39.
In the last days, people will either be living in the darkness of deception, like the frog in the heating kettle, or walking in the Light of truth, recognizes the changing spiritual climate. This distinction will ultimately determine their eternal destination.
Satan has dramatically increased his influence and agenda throughout the last few years, causing it to be more critical than ever that we pursue God’s truth and respond to it. Remaining complacent is a dangerous business.
Simply claiming association with “the church” is not enough. When we look at the seven churches described in Revelation, we see examples of spiritual identity that will exist in the last days. Did you know that of those seven churches, only one was considered faithful? Two were considered false or dead. And four were considered compromised. Thank the Lord, that salvation is always available for any who are willing to repent, and pick up their cross to follow Jesus Christ in truth.
Considering our fallen world, and the prolific compromise in today’s churches, let’s look at a couple of our enemy’s tactics that open the door to the territory our enemy inhabits? Lucifer, or Satan, is the god of this world. And he literally does rule the systems of this world.
Satan’s goal is to draw whoever is in the Kingdom of God, into his kingdom of spiritual darkness. And compromise is the easiest first step. When a professing Christian is pliable to what is culturally or socially acceptable, despite its opposition to God’s Word, this sets the stage for falling into the trap of compromise and Satan’s deception.
In every person there is a deep longing to make contact with the unknown—a “higher power.” We are all drawn toward a connection with someone or something that is greater, wiser, or more powerful than ourselves.
This is true at all levels, from the teenage girl reading her horoscope or practicing the latest love spell, to the person visiting a psychic or playing with Tarot cards, to the witch doctor in some remote tribe summoning power. These deceptive systems can take countless different forms, but the generic name for them all, is the occult.
God placed His longing within us, to draw us toward Himself. But Satan has devised a way to divert people into his darkness… through their desire to know the unknown—just as Adam and Eve were tempted to desire greater knowledge through Satan’s scheme in the Garden.
Scripture refers to the act of turning away from the One True God to false gods, as spiritual adultery. James 4:4 is a clear declaration by God. “Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.”
Proverbs 7:25-27 describes the tragic end of those who permit themselves to be enticed and deceived by spiritual adultery. “Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, Do not stray into her paths; For she has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men. Her house is the way to hell, Descending to the chambers of death.”
Although there are many branches of the occult, which are active in the world today, two common ones, even amongst professing Christians, are described in Scripture as divination and sorcery.
Divination provides knowledge about people, events, and situations, through supernatural means that originates from demonic revelation. Common terms for this are fortune-telling, psychic predicting and extrasensory perception. Tragically, we even see this played out in some churches. And although the Holy Spirit does give Words of Knowledge, Words of wisdom, and Prophecy through the Holy Spirit, we must discern the difference between Spirit and demonic. If these supernatural occurrences cater to the emotions and physical senses of those present, it is likely from Satan. If it ministers to the spirit of those present and brings glory to God and strength to the church, it is from the Holy Spirit. Whatever word is given, MUST align with God’s Word as a confirming witness.
Christians seem surprised that Satan is in the church, but where else would he be? He was in the Garden of God in order to corrupt God’s will at the very beginning. Since the early church, he has infiltrated to corrupt people with false doctrines and false signs and wonders. The fruits of his involvement are confusion, disunity, and compromise. Paul and other early church leaders, often preached about the workings of Satan inside the church in their day, warning the people to guard against it.
Acts 16:16-22 describes a girl possessed by the spirit of divination. The modern term for a person with this ability is called a psychic. There are several TV shows that promote this supernatural experience with proclaimed psychics. Although tempting and entertaining to watch, as Christians, these shows should recognized as Satan’s demonic power, and avoided.
Most people want to know what the future holds. Fortune-telling caters to this desire. But God requires us to “walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). And our faith must be rooted in God’s Word, not in a new revelation or prophecy alone. As a believer, there may be an occasion where God gives us a supernatural revelation, without us seeking it. This is knowledge from the Holy Spirit to serve God’s purposes. And we should always make certain it is in agreement with God’s Word.
Sorcery is another form of demonic activity, making an impact on the physical senses through potions, charms, amulets, magic, drugs, spells, and incantations. This demonic trap has become highly popular with the youth and young adults.
This theme in films has exploded in popularity as Satan indoctrinates the young to embrace this supernatural power for themselves. It is strategically being imbedded into our current culture through movies, books, television commercials, and programs.
Movies and books such as Harry Potter, whitewash sorcery, giving it mass appeal. The unfortunate outcome is that people open a door they believe is superficial entertainment, not realizing it is accompanied by demonic influence. God warns us about these dangers in His Word for a reason. All the while, Satan is spoon-feeding the world (and the church) with his message, wrapped in attractive, even intoxicating, entertainment.
There is a reason God tells us to “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world” (1 Peter 5:8-9).
God is loving, but He is also holy. He provides grace and righteousness to those who humble themselves and follow Jesus, but He is not tolerant of willful or careless sin. That may not be your belief, but if it is not, and you are serious about your eternal destination, I ask you to study the New Testament early churches and take what is taught seriously.
The satanic spirit in the last day’s church, is compromise. And too many professing Christians are already infected with it.
“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:15-17).
With God, all things are possible!
Dale and Paula Black
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“Dale, it’s good to hear God’s reality these days. I’m a retired pastor with over 4 decades of ministry and it caught my attention your reference to Mr. Joel Green, being 77 yrs. old, because that’s how old I am. See brother Dale, your story can be substantiated with God’s Word. That’s what the His Word tells us to do in order to avoid being deceived. Keep up the good work our Lord has assigned you to do, you’ll reap abundant fruits and at the end great rewards from Jesus. I’ll surely keep you and yours in my prayers. ” William
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