November 22nd, 2009

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Satan is moving in the lives of every non-believer. For evidence of this look at how the world is today. Look at the turmoil and controversy in the world. Look at the hate for life and liberty and all that God holds in high esteem. Look at how the world which we have been given dominion over is being misused and abused. All the wars and atomic weapons and slavery. Look at all the sexual immorality and crime. In all of this it is said, "Surely God doesn't want this, and if He does exist He wouldn't let it happen." It's true He doesn't want all of this, but he lets it happen because He gave us freewill and He can only work within us when we let Him. So if we aren't believers, and we aren't letting Him work within us, who could be responsible for all of the depravity that goes on in the world? Partly it is a work of the sinful flesh, an inheritance we are cursed to from Adam; and partly is the work of the enemy.

2 Thessalonians 2:8-12
"And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness."

To be sure there are self-proclaimed Christians who are duped into doing the enemies work but we can test them according to the Word. Are they living out a Christian life? Are they walking with Christ? If so then they wouldn't hate anyone. They wouldn't bomb abortion clinics and assault the doctors who work there. They wouldn't call for the destruction of anyone, but would seek to spread the Word joyfully to all nations and peoples, no matter the cost. Anyone can cry "In the name of God/Allah" and set off a bomb that kills themselves and others, but as scripture tells us, God will not recognize them.

Matthew 7:21-23
"Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonder in Your name?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!'"

Of course Satan doesn't manifest himself directly. He works through trickery and subterfuge. His greatest trick is convincing us in the modern world he doesn't exist. The ancients knew he existed and they fought daily with possession and other such tactics of the devil and his minions. While he would like to be worshiped instead of God, he's also just happy turning and keeping you away from Him. Satan knows it doesn't take much for us to return to our fleshly, worldly ways. I fight with it on a daily basis. I have to pray daily and almost unceasingly just to stand up to the attacks of the enemy, but God gives us His armor to help us in this battle, we are never alone! Never for once think that God doesn't want you as one of His children. God does want to save you, but He cannot be near sin. Because He is Holy and perfect, He cannot stand to have sin near Him. That's why atheists and other unbelievers say they cannot feel Him working in their lives. It's not that He doesn't care, because He does, it's just His very nature would make Him being near any sin impossible.

Matthew 13:49-50
"So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just, and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth."

Psalm 5:4-6
"For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness, nor shall evil dwell with you. The boastful shall not stand in Your sight; You hate all workers of iniquity. You shall destroy those who speak falsehood; the LORD abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man."

Romans 1:18-19
"For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.

Isaiah 63:10
"But they rebelled and grieved His Holy Spirit; so He turned against them as an enemy, and He fought against them."

Don't take the above to mean that your salvation is impossible. I believe many in the prison system have had a genuine rebirth in Jesus and God. They are born again and just as surely as their faith is real they are assured a place in Heaven. Even the prisoner on the cross to the right of Jesus received salvation because he believed that Jesus is the Christ. That is key to salvation, to receiving that almighty grace of God. To save you you have to accept His Son, Jesus Christ, into your life.

Luke 23:39-43
"Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, 'If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.' But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, 'Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.' Then he said to Jesus, 'Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.' And Jesus said to him, 'Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.'

Even a criminal, being punished justly for his crimes, was saved all because he accepted that Jesus was the Christ. How much more reward will you have if you come to believe and accept Him now, when you still have much time on this earth?

Matthew 11:28-30
"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."

Ephesians 2:8-9
"For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast."

Salvation is, of course, more then just proclaiming your acceptance of Christ into your life. You must show an outward sign of inward change. Baptism doesn't save, of course, but it is an outward sign that is commanded by God to be shown. It tells the rest of the world that you walk with Christ, for even Christ was baptized in the Jordan by his own cousin, a prophet in his own right. Part of that outward sign is a repentance from sin and showing that you are doing your best to not sin. No one is perfect, of course and we all sin. Sometimes that sin is hidden from us, for we do not realize it is a sin. That is in part why we must pray so much.

Acts 3:19
"Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord"

All your old deeds and transgressions were blotted out at the time of genuine salvation, but we still live in the flesh, even with our renewed soul and spirit. Do not think that God can't use you, though. Share your faith with others; no matter who you are, God can use you! He exhorts us to go forth and make a disciple of all nations. It's Christ's great commission to all of us who are His followers. So if you are friends with an unbeliever, let the Spirit use you to preach the gospel. That doesn't necessarily mean giving them a sermon and it certainly doesn't give us right to condemn them. We preach the gospel each and every day that we live a Godly life. We preach the gospel every time we give Him glory in the good works that we do in His name. We preach the gospel by living as close to a Christ-like life as we possibly can.

It's not going to be easy to be a Christian, though. Through Peter God warns us that we are to face fiery trials. We are exhorted though to take joy for taking part in Christ's sufferings. How great a testimony is that for any Christian, to be though of as such a threat to the enemy that we are persecuted as much as our very own Lord and Savior! I take great joy in the attacks that the enemy throws against me because that means I am making an impact not only in my life but in the lives of others. If Satan wasn't trying so hard to stop me I would have to rethink whether or not my salvation was genuine.

1 Peter 4:12-19
"Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified. But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people's matters. Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter. For the time has come for judgement to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? Now 'If the righteous one is scarcely saved, Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?' Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good, as to a faithful Creator."

Even in this, God has something for us. God provides spiritual armor for His followers to protect against the evil one; spiritual warfare is very real. This goes back to the devil. He's tricked western minds into thinking it isn't real, but look around you. 75% of the world has fallen under the false teachings of the Muslim. The rest of the world that isn't Christian follows other false teachings from native American spiritualism to Taoism, asataru, general paganism, Satan worship, Hinduism and Buddhism, among a number of any other false teachings. Even modern Jews only have it half right, and we need to reach out to them twice as hard. They are after all God's chosen people. How terrible a thing for them to be so close yet lose it all!

Ephesians 6:10-20
"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rules of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak."

God always gets and answers your prayers, although sometimes it takes a while because the enemy is always working against those who are making an impact for the kingdom of Heaven. If we are unceasing and honest in our attempts, even Michael the archangel himself will intervene on your behalf to make sure your prayers get through. There is nothing the enemy can do that God cannot overcome. Even Daniel, who fasted and prayed for three weeks, his prayers were answered and an angel even appeared to him to let him know what took so long. God isn't callous or uncaring, He's exactly the opposite! He wants his followers to know that He is on their side and will always intervene for them when necessary.

Daniel 10:12-13
"Then he said to me, 'Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were hear; and I have come because of your words. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia.'"

Originally published at Ameliorations 1.0.

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