“He spoke these words by the treasury, while teaching in the temple complex. But no one seized Him, because His hour had not come.” vs20
The Lord Jesus is in complete control of what happens to us. Just like He could not die or even be taken before His hour, even so, nothing can happen to us that He does not ordain. We are safe in His hands – not careless, but cared for – and we need not fear men.
I was talking to someone yesterday about the gospel – justification by faith and eternal election. She claimed justification by faith, but then denied it by a needless and silly fear of demons, as if we need some EXTRA deliverance because trusting Christ is insufficient. Her doctrine, as taught to her by deceivers, is that generational curses and strongholds of Satan can only be broken by prophets laying their hands on us. But, I asked a series of questions:
- If the Son has set you free, are you free indeed?
- He that believes the Son has everlasting life, so what do we lack?
- Is it not true that EVERY BELIEVER has everything in Christ Jesus from the moment that we believe, even all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies? Even as Paul says, “Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens (Eph 1:3).”
In essence, if believing on the Son does not make us righteous, if we don’t have peace with God, and if He is not on our side, then justification by faith means nothing! We must be justified, which is totally and perfectly righteous by faith, or we have no gospel and go against the plain teaching of scripture. Paul says, “Therefore, since we have been declared righteous by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. We have also obtained access through Him by faith into this grace in which we stand” (Rom 5:1-2). And, if God is on our side – if we are fully forgiven of all sins – then there is no generational curse to haunt us, because Christ bore our curse successfully on the cursed tree, and He’s been raised to the right hand of glory above all principalities and powers (Col 2:10).
Yes, we resist Satan and war against him, but it is by faith, “putting on shoes of readiness to preach the gospel”, not literal shoes, but having Christ on our minds and in our heart always (Eph 6:15). We take the “shield of faith”, which is not a literal shield, but the truth of the gospel believed, so we can handle Satan’s lies and accusations (Eph 6:16). We take, not a literal “helmet of salvation”, but the bold confident knowledge that we are saved in full assurance (Eph 6:17). These things, and many like them, are the weapons of our warfare, and with Christ on our side we shall not fear.
Let the Devil tremble, but as Luther said, “We tremble not for him.” Let him accuse and attack, as God sees fit, but grace will prove sufficient! Paul said, “But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness.’ Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me. So I take pleasure in weaknesses, insults, catastrophes [when Satan is really causing me trouble], persecutions, and in pressures, because of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong (2 Cor 12:9-10).” Just as Christ had a time that He must die for our good, we also have a time to lay our life down for His glory, or to be raptured in the air. Either way, we know who’s on the throne, and it is not sinful man.
We do not disobey laws and walk in front of speeding cars, but we walk impervious to fear, doing God’s will from the heart, because He is with us, and we are on His side! It is written, “What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us (Rom 8:31)?”
Brothers, be bold in your gospel liberty: Fear God and no one else.