Satan's Power in Government
The Evil One, Enemy
The Angelic Conflict rages within nations and governments. God upholds the Divine Institutions and authority structures, and Satan attacks them to support his case in the Appeal Trial. Satan's goal is to consolidate his power to establish a one world government, like the United Nations. To do so, he must annihilate Israel to prevent the Millennial reign of Jesus Christ and fulfillment of the unconditional covenants to Israel. The closest he will come to achieving that will be the Revived Roman Empire, which will rule the world in the Tribulation under the Antichrist.
God established nationalism at the Tower of Babel to prevent Satan from setting up his one world government. Nationalism protects freedom. Nations can raise armies to protect themselves from being enslaved by other nations. Governments preserve freedom by protecting citizens from criminality. The basis for freedom is authority. There is no freedom outside authority. Freedom without authority becomes anarchy, and authority without freedom becomes tyranny.
Satan employs various methods to support power grabs. He tries to overpower, undermine, confuse, lie, cheat, and steal to grab power. He believes the end justifies the means. He could care less about human freedom. Satan wants everything done his way. He wants the whole world to obey him, worship him, and vote for him to prove his case in the Appeal Trial. Of course, this also means rejecting Divine Authority.
Take for example the Judicial System, which is supposed to uphold justice. The Mosaic Law had a rule against taking bribes.
Exodus 23:8Taking bribes was prohibited because it blinded those who see (the officials, judges, or witnesses). And bribes subverted the cases of the just. Regarding bribes, God will oppose bribes and support the just. However, Satan will not hesitate to use bribes to influence the outcome of a court case. Satan could tempt the judge with a bribe or influence a person to try to bribe an official. Satan doesn't care about justice. He cares about winning. As a nation deteriorates, justice is compromised and winning at any cost takes precedence in the judicial process.
You shall not take a bribe, because a bribe blinds those who see and subverts the cases of the just.
Daniel had his friends pray for
God to reveal the dream so they would not be killed (Dan 2:17-18).
Then the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a night vision (Dan 2:19).
In those days God spoke through dreams and visions. Today, He speaks
through His Word.
Daniel was escorted into the King's presence, where he related the dream. He said the King had seen a great statue in his dream (Dan 2:31). The statue symbolized the kingdoms of the world.
Daniel 2:32-33Daniel told Nebuchadnezzar that the head of gold symbolized his Babylonian Empire. And he related the other parts of the body to the future world empires, although he didn't yet know their names.
32 "The head of that statue was made of fine gold (Chaldean Empire), its breast and its arms of silver (Medes and Persians), its belly (Graeco-Macedonian Empire of Alexander the Great) and its thighs of bronze (Hellenistic monarchies),
33 its legs of iron (Roman Empire), its feet partly of iron (Revived Roman Empire of Tribulation) and partly of clay (undermined nations).
Daniel 2:34 Second AdventThe "stone cut out without hands" was in its natural state and had not been reshaped by human hands. The "stone cut out without hands" symbolizes Jesus Christ who will return at the Second Advent and crush the enemies of Israel.
"You continued looking until a stone was cut out without hands, and it struck the statue on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces (Armageddon).
Daniel 2:35From all this we see that God has a Sovereign Design for human history. In spite of all the devil will do to thwart the Plan of God and destroy Israel, the Lord's Plan for human history will be fulfilled. After Daniel had interpreted King Nebuchadnezzar's dream and was greatly honored and promoted, Satan counterattacked. He inspired Nebuchadnezzar to build a giant image of gold, or idol, for worship (Dan 3:1). Nebuchadnezzar gave orders that at the sound of music everyone was to fall down and worship the image (Dan 3:4-5). However, when Daniel's friends, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, refused to worship the image, they were reported to the king (Dan 3:12). The three were brought to the king, who gave them an ultimatum to worship the image or be thrown into a blazing furnace (Dan 3:15). They told the king that he could throw them into the furnace and that the God whom they served could deliver them; but even if He did not, they would not worship the image or the gods of Babylon (Dan 3:16, 17, 18).
"Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold were crushed all at the same time, and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors (Baptism of Fire); and the wind carried them away so that not a trace of them was found (not allowed in Millennial Kingdom). But the stone (Jesus Christ) that struck the statue became a great mountain (reign of Christ in Millennium) and filled the whole Earth.
Nebuchadnezzar was outraged. He had the furnace heated seven times more than usual (Dan 3:19). Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego were bound wearing their full suits, complete with turbans, and thrown into the furnace (Dan 3:21). Because the furnace was so hot, the men who threw them into the fire were killed (Dan 3:22). As King Nebuchadnezzar watched, he saw four people walking around in the blazing furnace, and the fourth resembled a son of the gods (Dan 3:25). He ordered Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego to come out. He called them "servants of the Most High God" (Dan 3:26). They walked out with not a hair singed or their clothes burned or even the smell of fire on them (Dan 3:27). Nebuchadnezzar blessed the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego and praised them for violating his command and obeying their God (Dan 3:28). As a result of these events, Nebuchadnezzar became a believer.
So, building the image and worshipping the image was Satan's idea. It was idolatry. Idolatry was already being practiced in Babylon, and this was just a new image. Satan already had presence in Babylon. He had temples called ziggurats. Satan wants to be worshipped as god (Isa 14:14), and idolatry is a way to worship him.
Nebuchadnezzar's law to require the death penalty for not worshipping the image was also inspired by Satan. The law was wrong. It was unethical. It was not protecting anything sacred. It violated human freedom of religion. Nebuchadnezzar later understood this. So this shows how Satan operates in government, has access to the king, and perverts law and justice. And the deliverance of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego shows how God protects those who obey Him and maintains control over human history.
Later, when Nebuchadnezzar was full of pride and took credit for building Babylon the Great, the Lord spoke from Heaven saying, "King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is declared: the kingdom (sovereignty) has been removed from you" (Dan 4:31). Nebuchadnezzar was sent out to eat grass like a cow (Dan 4:32). This shows how God promotes and demotes sovereign rulers and authorities.
When Daniel knew that the king had
signed the law, he went into his house and opened the windows and prayed
three times a day as before (Dan 6:10). The conspirators came by
agreement and found Daniel praying (Dan 6:11). They reported him
to the king, who was deeply distressed over what he had done (Dan 6:13).
Then the king gave orders and had Daniel thrown into the Lion's den (Dan 6:16). He had faith that God would deliver him. A stone was laid over the mouth of the den and Daniel was left overnight (Dan 6:17). The king came to the lion's den at dawn the next day and called out to Daniel (Dan 6:19, 20). Daniel answered:
Daniel 6:21-22Daniel was taken out of the lion's den, and the men who had maliciously accused him were thrown into the lion's den along with their wives and children (Dan 6:24). They did not reach the bottom of the den before their bones were crushed.
21 Then Daniel spoke to the king, "O king, live forever!
22 My God sent His angel and shut the lions' mouths and they have not hurt me, inasmuch as I was found innocent before Him; and also before you, O king, I have committed no crime."
Now a lion symbolizes a throne angel. In this case it symbolizes Satan (1 Pet 5:8). Satan inspired the conspiracy to murder Daniel. And God sent His angel to protect Daniel from the lions. The king was duped into listening to the conspirators because he was under Satan's influence also. Satan appealed to Darius to allow himself to be worshipped as a god. The law was unethical and violated freedom of religion, which is inherent in separation of Church and state.
However, numbering Israel was not Satan's idea but the Lord's.
2 Sam 24:1This verse is an anthropopathism, which is language of accommodation that ascribes to God human feelings in order to help man understand His will. God does not get angry, and He did not speak directly to David. He spoke to David through the Prophet Gad (2 Sam 24:11; 1 Chron 21:9). God was displeased with Israel, so He permitted Satan to incite David to number Israel in order to discipline Israel. Israel was guilty before David ordered the numbering of Israel.
Now again the anger of the LORD burned against Israel, and He incited David against them saying, "Go, number Israel and Judah."
So, David called in his General, Joab, and ordered him to number Israel (2 Sam 24:2). Joab saw through it immediately. He knew this was a sin to appeal to David's pride, and he tried to talk David out of it (2 Sam 24:3). But David would not listen. Satan had David's ear, and the Lord allowed ti. So David directed Joab to obey his order and go number Israel (2 Sam 24:4).
It took Joab and his helpers 9 months and 20 days to go throughout Israel and take the census. However, they did not number the Tribes of Benjamin and Levi (1 Chron 21:6). Numbering the Tribe of Levi was prohibited, since the Levites were not to be soldiers (Nu 1:47-50).
David realized the error of his ways in numbering Israel and acknowledged his sins to God (2 Sam 24:10; 1 Chron 21:8). So, the Lord sent the Prophet Gad to David to offer him three choices for punishment (1 Chron 21:9-10, 11, 12). David chose 3 days of pestilence in the land of Israel, and 70,000 died in Israel as a result (1 Chron 21:13, 14).
The pestilence was administered by an Elect Angel with a drawn sword. When the angel reached Jerusalem to destroy it, the Lord changed His mind and had mercy.
1 Chronicles 21:15"Changed His mind" is the Hebrew <j^n! (nicham), which means to change the mind, not repent. The Lord ordered the destroying angel to relax his hand, meaning stop killing the people.
And God sent an angel to Jerusalem to destroy it; but as he was about to destroy it, the LORD saw and He changed His mind over the calamity, and said to the destroying angel, "It is enough; now relax your hand." And the angel of the LORD was standing by the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.
1 Chronicles 21:16The Elect Angel was suspended between Earth and Heaven as the mediator of Judgment. His sword was outstretched over Jerusalem as a sign of active Judgment. When David and the elders saw the angel, they covered themselves with sackcloth and fell on their faces in intercessory prayer (1 Chron 21:16, 17).
Then David lifted up his eyes and saw the angel of the LORD standing between Earth and Heaven, with his drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, covered with sackcloth, fell on their faces.
The angel of the Lord spoke to Gad and sent him to tell David to build an altar to offer a sacrifice to God (1 Chron 21:18). David bought the threshing floor of Ornan, built an altar there, and offered sacrifices to the Lord (1 Chron 21:19-25, 26). The Lord answered with fire from Heaven and commanded the angel, and the angel put his sword back in his sheath as a sign that the plague was over (1 Chron 21:27).
The greatest system of jurisprudence in world history was the Mosaic Law, and the second was Roman law. Both of these systems melted like butter in the hands of Satan when the only truly innocent Man in the world was convicted and crucified. Satan started the conspiracy to kill Jesus Christ, convinced Judas to betray Him, paraded Him before the Jewish King, tried Him before the Jewish Priesthood, and pressured the Roman Governor to crucify Him in spite of being found innocent.
After Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, the religious leaders of Israel conspired to put Him to death. So, the chief priests and Pharisees convened a council to decide what to do about Him (Jn 11:47). Being politically astute they saw Jesus as a threat to their power (Jn 11:48). Politicians stay in power by convincing the people of what they want to believe or telling them what they want to hear. The Jewish religious leaders were liars and frauds, and Jesus was exposing them.
At the council Caiaphas, the High Priest, proposed the solution. He said, "It is expedient for you that one man die on behalf of the people and that the whole nation not perish" (Jn 11:50). He meant that Jesus Christ must die so they could all stay in power. Satan is the one who really conceived the idea. It was murder, and Satan was a murderer from the beginning (Jn 8:44). From that day on they planned to kill Jesus (Jn 11:53). Caiaphas became the leader, and those who agreed with him became his dupes. Actually, Satan was the leader of the conspiracy and Caiaphas and his friends were the dupes.
Now, the irony was that Caiaphas had just prophesied the truth for the wrong reason. Jesus did die on behalf of the nation of Israel and all mankind (Jn 11:51-52). So, did the thought come from God or the devil? The answer is that God allowed Satan to speak for Him. Satan put the thought in the mind of Caiaphas, but it was God's will. Jesus must die on behalf of all mankind in order to fulfill the Plan of God. God uses the wrath of man to praise Him (Psa 76:10).
Arrest of Jesus
At the time of the Passover, the chief priests and elders gave orders to seize Jesus if they saw Him (Jn 11:57). They wondered if He would come to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. Jesus did come and was welcomed as King by the crowds on Palm Sunday (Jn 12:12-18). They saw Him as the future King to deliver them from the Romans, not as the Son of God to worship. Due to his popularity, the Pharisees were afraid to arrest Him (Jn 12:19). So the religious leaders made a deal with Judas Iscariot to lead them to Jesus later. It was Satan who convinced Judas to betray Jesus (Jn 13:2).
At the Passover meal, Satan entered into Judas and he left to betray Jesus to the Jews (Jn 13:26, 27). After the Passover meal, Jesus went with his disciples into the Garden of Gethsemane to pray (Matt 26:36). It was there that Judas met Jesus with the Temple Guard. Judas greeted Jesus and kissed him to point Him out to the guards (Matt 26:49), and they arrested Him (Matt 26:50).
There was a Roman cohort with the Temple Guard along with a mob (Matt 26:55; Jn 18:3, 12). Satan was directing Judas and the Temple Guard, and had also incited the mob. The arresting officers were not obeying authority, they were part of the conspiracy under the power of Satan. Even Peter was incited by Satan to fight back when he drew his sword and cut off the ear of the slave of the High Priest (Matt 26:51-52; Jn 18:10).
Trial Before Annas
In the first of six trials, Jesus was taken before Annas, who was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the High Priest and ring leader of the conspiracy (Jn 18:13). Annas asked Jesus about His teaching. When Jesus answered, one of the officers struck Jesus and reprimanded Him (Jn 18:22). This was a strict violation of Jewish Law and an indication that Satan was also running the trial. It was also illegal to hold a trial at night.
Trial Before Caiaphas
Next Jesus was sent to Caiaphas, the High Priest, where the scribes and elders were gathered (Matt 26:57; Jn 18:24). Although they tried to obtain a false testimony about Jesus in order to put Him to death, they found none (Matt 26:59, 60). They found two witnesses who testified that Jesus said He would destroy the Temple and rebuild it in three days (Matt 26:61).
Then the High Priest asked Jesus if He was the Messiah (Matt 26:63).
Matthew 26:64The High Priest tore his robes and accused Jesus of blasphemy because he claimed to be the Son of God, which He was (Matt 26:65). He asked the others, and they said that Jesus deserved death (Matt 26:66). Then they spat on Him, punched Him in the face, and slapped Him (Matt 26:67). This was a flagrant violation of Jewish Law. The accused could not be struck. Then they mocked Jesus (Matt 26:68). The courtroom discipline had completely broken down. The verdict should have been nullified on the ground that the trial was a violation of Jewish Law. This trial was also at night. Satan was running the trial.
Jesus said to him, "You have said it yourself; nevertheless I tell you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven."
Trial Before the Sanhedrin
Early the next morning the Sanhedrin was convened to determine what to do with Jesus (Matt 27:1; Mk 15:1; Lk 22:66). The High Priest also presided over this trial (Lk 22:67-70). They determined that Jesus was guilty of blasphemy because He claimed to be the Son of God (Lk 22:70). So they took Jesus to Pilate, the Roman Governor (Prefect), because they could not put a person to death (Lk 23:1; Jn 18:28, 31).
When Jesus was taken before Pilate, the Jewish leaders accused Him of misleading the nation and forbidding them to pay taxes to Caesar and for claiming to be Messiah the King. Pilate questioned Him and upon discovering that He was a Galilean, sent Him to King Herod (Lk 23:1-7).
Trial Before Herod
Herod was elated to meet Jesus because he wanted to be entertained with some miracle. He questioned Him at length, but Jesus answered him nothing (Lk 23:8-9). The chief priests and elders accused Jesus vehemently (Lk 23:10). Herod's soldiers treated Jesus with contempt and dressed Him in a gorgeous robe and sent Him back to Pilate (Lk 23:11).
Trial Before Pilate
Pilate convened a trial and summoned the chief priests and rulers of the Jews to testify against him. The Jews remained outside in the courtyard so they wouldn't defile themselves and not be able to eat the Passover meal. Pilate had Jesus scourged according to the Roman system of interrogation (Jn 19:1), and the soldiers mocked Jesus (Jn 19:2-3). But after questioning Jesus, Pilate found no guilt in Him (Matt 27:23; Mark 15:14; Lk 23:14, 22; Jn 18:38, 19:4, 6).
Pilate was under political pressure from the Jewish leaders, and Satan had incited a crowd outside. So, Pilate gave the people a choice. He would either release Jesus or Barabbas, a notorious robber and murderer (Jn 18:40; Acts 3:14). The crowd, however, under incitement from Satan, called for Barabbas to be released and Jesus to be crucified (Matt 27:20-23). Satan increased the pressure on Pilate until a riot was starting outside (Mat 27:24). Pilate buckled to political pressure. He released Barabbas and ordered Jesus to be crucified (Matt 27:26; Mk 15:15).
Revelation 18:3The Prostitute of Babylon influences kings of the nations and merchants. Her influence over the kings is symbolized by intoxication with wine. She makes the merchants rich from dealing in luxurious and extravagant merchandise.
For all the nations have drunk from the wine of the passion of her prostitution; and the kings of the Earth have committed prostitution with her, and the merchants of the Earth have become rich from the power of her extravagance.
The function of the Civilian Establishment is under the power of the Prostitute of Babylon. She infiltrates government agencies, institutions, legislatures, and judicial systems. She influences businesses, schools, and churches. And she is the power of Satan in the cities and states.
Satan is the master deceiver and trickster. His objective is to win at all costs. Truth and loyalty mean nothing to him. The stakes for him are banishment forever in the Lake of Fire. He understands the magnitude of his crisis and has concern only for himself and his problem. For him, the end justifies the means. He could care less about humans. He will use them to achieve his ends and discard them when he has finished. His deceit and trickery are not a game but a serious struggle for survival. His objective is to win against all odds and to arrive victorious as a god to be worshipped and obeyed.
Just as the woman in the Garden was the target for Satan's deceit, so is the Church Age Believer.
2 Corinthians 11:3Here the Greek ejxapatavw (exapatao), from ejx (out of) + apatavw (to deceive, seduce), means to completely deceive (Rom 16:18; 1 Tim 2:14). The word carries the nuance of seduction (with flattery). Satan flattered the woman by engaging her in intelligent conversation and implying she would be as smart as God. He lied to her about things she did not understand. And the woman was carried along by it because she wanted to believe. But it was all a lie, which she discovered when it was over.
But I am afraid, lest as the serpent completely deceived Eve by his craftiness, your thoughts should be led astray from noble simplicity and purity toward Christ.
Satan's objective was not to seduce the woman. She would have been a pushover for him, since he is the most beautiful creature that God ever created. Since she could only sin by eating the forbidden fruit, Satan had to deceive her into committing that sin. The woman never saw it coming. Even though she was the most brilliant and perfect woman who ever lived, she was no match for the devil. He lured her with lies and deceit and convinced her to do the unthinkable, to sin against God.
It is easy to look back afterward with objectivity, but at the time Satan was mesmerizing her with deception and she was like a person caught up in a wave of seduction. The woman admitted afterward that she was completely deceived. She didn't know what she was doing. She was under Satan's deceptive and charming influence. She wasn't thinking objectively about the issues. She wasn't believing God's commandment not to eat the fruit. She was listening to Satan's lies about how good it would be for her to eat the fruit. Satan was not about to tell the truth. He dealt in lies and deception to achieve his end, which was to get her to sin so he could take over the world and justify himself in the Appeal Trial.
Satan "completely deceived Eve by his craftiness." "Craftiness" is the Greek panourgiva, (panourgia), meaning craftiness, cunning; from (pa", all) + (e[rgon, work) - ready to do anything, hence craft, cunning. Satan's method was craftiness. He out-maneuvered the woman. He used doubletalk and innuendo to lure her from objectivity and truth. He wove a pattern of deception into a believable fantasy. She took the bait and fell into his trap like a fair young maiden being seduced by a philanderer.
"Your thoughts should be led astray from noble simplicity and purity toward Christ" – "led astray" is the Greek fqeivrw (phtheiro), meaning to be led astray; to seduce a virgin; to corrupt. Just as Eve's thinking was led astray in the Garden, the Church Age Believer's thinking can be led astray by the devil. Led astray refers to turning down the road of carnality or reversionism.
"Noble simplicity" is the Greek aJplovth", (aplotes), which is the noble simplicity characteristic of heroes. It means sticking to core values and truths. This enables one to be objective and stay on track to avoid confusion on the battlefield or in a crisis.
The thoughts of the Christian should not "be led astray from the noble simplicity and purity toward Christ." "Toward Christ" refers to strategic alignment with Christ. Like the Ark of the Covenant in the Tabernacle, Christ is our all and in all. Our thinking must not stray from occupation with Christ. Thinking that is occupied with Christ will not be occupied with the devil. The thinking must be pure, which means unadulterated and sanctified. This is only possible in the filling of the Holy Spirit, which comes through Rebound.
1 Timothy 2:14"Adam was not deceived." The Greek strategic negative ou, means that Adam was absolutely not deceived. He knew what he was doing when he chose to sin. "Deceived" is the Greek ajpatavw, (apatao), meaning to deceive (Eph 5:6; Jas 1:26). The woman, however, was "completely deceived," which is the Greek ejxapatavw (exapatao), from ejx (out of) + apatavw (to deceive, seduce), meaning to completely deceive (2 Cor 11:3).
And Adam was not deceived, but the woman, having been completely deceived, fell into transgression.
Being completely deceived by Satan, the woman "fell into transgression." This is the Greek paravbasi", (parabasis), from (parav, beyond) + (bavsi", foot) = transgression; overstepping the Law. She overstepped the commandment of God not to eat the forbidden fruit. She disregarded God's commandment and believed Satan. Then she made the decision to sin. She wanted to do it, and she did it. Regardless of the reason, she was still accountable for her action, and she died spiritually just as the Lord had said. In spiritual death, she lost her fellowship with God and her harmony with her Right Man, and she became Satan's slave.
It is important to attain Spiritual Maturity to avoid being Satan's victim.
Ephesians 4:14Immature Christians are naïve and easy prey in the devil's world. Without understanding Bible Doctrine, they don't understand the Spiritual life. They are like a rudderless ship in a storm. The Greek kludwnivzomai (kludonizomai) means to be tossed here and there by waves. The waves symbolize attacks from the Cosmic System, such as from the Prostitute of Babylon (Rev 17:1). Naïve Christians are tossed around by the waves of the Cosmic System and unable to chart a course for Spiritual Maturity or any destination.
In order that we no longer be immature, tossed here and there by waves and carried round in circles by every wind of doctrine by the dice-playing (cheating, craftiness) of men in trickery with the stratagems of deceit;
Immature Christians are "carried round in circles." This is the Greek perifevrw (periphero), from (peri, around) + (phero, carry), meaning carry round, carry about, carry here and there. Carried around in circles is convolution. It means having no factual basis in Bible Doctrine as the source of the truth, the true definitions. Things are defined in terms of themselves. Principles are derived from human viewpoint or presumptuous assumptions. It is like chasing the tail (2 Tim 3:7).
"Doctrine" is the Greek didaskaliva (didaskalia), which refers to Bible Doctrine as the criteria for understanding the Spiritual life. "Every wind of doctrine" does not refer to Spiritual truth, but apostasy, Ecumenical Babylon. These are doctrines from the world, including doctrines of demons (1 Tim 4:1). These doctrines have their ultimate source in Satan.
The immature Christian is victimized by "by the dice-playing (craftiness) of men." "Dice-playing" is the Greek kubeiva (kubeia), which literally means dice-playing and comes to mean craftiness, trickery. Dice-playing is an attempt to win in a game of chance, but the game is rigged. The dice are loaded by Satan. This corresponds to a diversion from the true battle of life as understood from Bible Doctrine. It is chasing rabbits.
"Trickery" is the Greek panourgiva (panourgia), meaning trickery, craftiness, cunning; from (pa", all) + (e[rgon, work) - ready to do anything, hence craft, cunning, trickery (Luk 20:23; 1 Cor 3:19; 2 Cor 4:2; 11:3; 12:16). This applies to worldly explanations, which exhibit cunning craftiness of man, who has been duped (tricked) by the devil (1 Cor 3:19; Job 5:13). It includes perversions of scripture (2 Cor 4:2; 11:3) and attracting followers by gimmicks, craft, and evil desires (2 Cor 12:16).
"Stratagems" is the Greek meqodeiva, (methodeia), which means method; scheming; plural, stratagems (Eph 6:11, machinations). A stratagem is defined as "an artifice or trick in war for deceiving the enemy; hence, in general, artifice; deceptive device; secret plot; evil machination."1 "Deceit" is the Greek plavnh, (plane), meaning deceit, error (2 Pet 3:17-18; Jas 5:20; 1 Jn 4:6), myth; figurative of wandering from the path of truth.
Satan's stratagems of deceit are aimed at disrupting and neutralizing the Plan of God in the life of the believer. His stratagems of deceit are incorporated in his strategy for attacking the Divine Institutions, Laws of Establishment, Israel, and the Church. He attacks Marriage and the family through the Prostitute of Babylon. His stratagems of deceit include arousing lust, lasciviousness, and jealous desires to tempt people to commit adultery, fornication, and promiscuity. He attacks the Divine Establishment by inciting murder, criminality, and rebellion. He arouses nations to annihilate Israel. And he attacks education and the Church through the Prostitute of Babylon.
2 Timothy 3:13 Reversionists"Evil men" are in the Cosmic System where they are doing the works of the devil. Evil is Satan's policy. Evil men operate under the policy of Satan. "Impostors" comes from the Greek govh", (goes), which literally means a sorcerer, but comes to mean an impostor, fraud, or cheat. Impostors are counterfeits. A counterfeit Christian may be an unbeliever, a hypocrite, or a believer who is not Grace-oriented or filled with the Holy Spirit.
But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving (others) and being deceived (by Satan).
"Evil men and impostors" are Reversionists. They will "proceed from bad to worse." This means they are not getting better but worse. They are going deeper into Reversionism. They are developing more and more capacity for evil.
As they go down, these Reversionists are "deceiving." "Deceiving" is the Greek planavw, (planaw), which means to lead astray or deceive. These Reversionists are deceiving others. They do not know the truth because they do not know Bible Doctrine. They are living in the darkness of the Cosmic System, where they believe the devil's lies. Consequently, they function as cosmic evangelists, who deceive others with the lies of the world.
These Reversionists are also "being deceived." "Being deceived" is the same Greek word, planavw (planao), in the passive voice. It means these Reversionists are being deceived by Satan and his demons, which are called "deceitful spirits" (1 Tim 4:1). Satan has led them astray and convinced them to believe him. They are following Satan, although they don't know it. Satan never reveals himself to them, and they are too naïve to understand what is happening in the Spiritual life. Therefore, they are living in a state of deception. The end of this road is the Sin Leading to Death.
1 John 4:5-6The Reversionists who are being deceived are from the world (the Cosmic System). In contrast, the Apostle John was from God, and Christians who were filled with the Holy Spirit would listen to him. Those who are filled with the Holy Spirit are empowered by the Spirit of Truth (Doctrine), while the Reversionists are under the influence of the spirit of deceit. "Deceit" is the Greek plavnh (plane), meaning deceit. It is the noun form of the Greek planao.
5 They are from the world; therefore, they speak from the world (Cosmic System), and the world listens to them.
6 We are from God; he who has come to know God listens to us. He who is not from God, does not listen to us. From this, we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of deceit.
1 Timothy 5:14-15The advice to younger widows is that they should get married and manage their households in order not to give the enemy (Satan) any opportunity for reproach. However, some had "already turned away to follow Satan." "Turned away" is the Greek ejktrevpw, (ektreepo), from (ejk, away from) + (trevpw, turn) = turn, turn away. This refers to the Reversionist, who turns away from God and follows Satan.
14 Therefore, I want the younger widows to marry, bear children, manage the household, and give the enemy not the slightest opportunity for reproach.
15 For you see, some have already turned away to follow Satan.
Revelation 12:9 Satan's FallIn the middle of the Tribulation, Satan and his fallen angels will be cast out of Heaven to the Earth. They are currently allowed to attend angelic all-hands meetings in Heaven, but they will be cast down to the Earth for the final time in the middle of the Tribulation to mark the beginning of their doom. In three and a half years, they will be removed from the Earth and incarcerated for a thousand years during the Millennium. This, therefore, describes Satan's fall leading to his doom.
Then the Great Dragon, the ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world, was thrown down out of Heaven to the Earth; also, his angels were thrown out of Heaven with him.
The "Great Dragon" is the Pole sign of Draco, the Dragon, in the heavens. Draco appears to be fleeing with a broken back (Job 26:13).2 Satan "deceives the whole world." Satan accomplishes this feat through his Cosmic System, which has power over the whole world. The power comes from Satan and his fallen angels. Since the fall of man, Satan has been deceiving the world. When he is incarcerated in the Millennium, he will no longer be able to deceive the world. The Lord Jesus Christ will rule without interference from Satan.
In the Tribulation Satan's Cosmic System (called Babylon the great city, Rev 18:21) will be destroyed and those nations and people who profited from it will also be destroyed. The Cosmic System will be broken into three parts, Cosmic, Political, and Ecumenical Babylon, and destroyed (Rev 16:18-19; 18:22-24). Political Babylon will be destroyed "because all the nations were deceived by your sorcery" (Rev 18:23). "Sorcery" is the Greek farmakeiva (pharmakeia), meaning drug abuse, magic arts, sorcery. It includes the use of drugs for witchcraft. "Sorcery" refers to the influence of the Cosmic System which deceived the nations.
Revelation 13:11 Rise of the False ProphetThe previous Beast came up out from the sea (Rev 13:1). The Beast is the symbolic representation of the Dictator of the Revived Roman Empire (the Antichrist). He came up, or rose to power, from the sea, which symbolizes Political Babylon. He will be the Dictator of the European Union of ten nations.
And I saw another beast coming up from the Land (Israel), and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spoke as the Dragon.
The second beast will come up, or rise to power, from the Land, corresponding to Israel. He is the False Prophet from Israel. He is like a lamb. The lamb symbolizes the (False) Messiah, another Antichrist. The lamb had two horns, which are symbols of power. The two horns symbolize:
The lamb spoke as the Dragon (Satan). He was indwelt by Satan and communicated Satan's policy of evil.
Revelation 13:12The Lamb exercises authority on behalf of the Dictator of the Revived Roman Empire, the Antichrist. "On behalf of" is from the Greek preposition, ejnwvpion (enopion), which literally means before, but comes to mean on behalf of. The Lamb operates with the authority of the Beast. They are partners. Since both are empowered by Satan, that is not a problem. The Lamb forces those who live in Israel to worship the Beast, the Antichrist. That is legalism. The fatal wound of the Beast had been healed. This means the Revived Roman Empire has replaced the historical one (which ended by a fatal wound).
He exercises all of the authority on behalf of the first Beast (Dictator of Revived Roman Empire), and he forces the Land (Israel) and those who dwell in it to worship the first Beast, whose fatal wound was healed.
Revelation 13:13 MiraclesThe False Prophet performs great miracles. "Miracles" is the Greek shmei'on (semeion), meaning a sign consisting of a wonder or miracle. He makes fire (lightning) come down from the sky to the ground. It doesn't come down from Heaven because God did not send it, but it is Satan's counterfeit for Divine Judgment.
He also performs great miracles, such that he even makes fire come down from the sky to the ground before men.
Revelation 13:14The False Prophet deceives the people of Israel with miracles, which he performs on behalf of the Beast (Dictator). He tells those in Israel to make an idol of the Beast (Dictator). The previous Beast (historical Roman Empire) had been killed with a death-blow from a sword. This refers to the fall of the Roman Empire. But the Beast "has come to life." This symbolizes the rise of the Revived Roman Empire.
And he deceives those who dwell in the Land because of the miracles which it was given him to perform on behalf of the Beast (Dictator), telling those who dwell in the Land to manufacture an idol of the Beast (Dictator), who had a fatal wound from a sword and has come to life.
Revelation 13:15 Abomination of DesolationThe Lamb was given the power to put a demon spirit in the idol of the Beast. The demon could speak, which deceived naïve people into thinking the idol of the Beast was a god. The idol was placed in the Temple in Jerusalem. It was the Abomination of Desolation (Daniel 11:31, 12:11; Matthew 24:15; Mark 13:14). It was an abomination to desecrate the Temple of the Holy God with an idol of Satan. Those who refused to worship the idol of the Beast were executed.
And it was given to him to give a demon spirit to the idol of the Beast, so that the idol of the Beast might even speak and cause as many as do not worship the idol of the Beast to be put to death.
Revelation 13:16 Mark of the BeastEveryone was required to have the mark of the Beast on their right hand or forehead. The mark of the Beast identified the followers of the Antichrist in Ecumenical Babylon.
And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free and the slaves, that they (the administrators) should give them a mark on their right hand or on their forehead,
Revelation 13:17 Business IDAll business transactions required being identified with (a believer in) the Antichrist. This is Satan's way of identifying witnesses for him in his Appeal Trial. It is also a counterattack on Logistical Grace provision from God.
and he provides that no one would be able to buy or to sell, except the one who has the mark, either the name of the Beast or the number of his name.
Revelation 13:18The wisdom about the number of the Beast is that it is 666, which symbolizes Monetary Reversionism. It is made up of the number, 6, which symbolizes man. Internet addresses begin with "www," where "w" is the Hebrew, vav, for 6. Six is the number for man.
Here is wisdom. Let him who has a mind calculate the number of the Beast, for it is the number for man; and the number of it is six hundred and sixty-six.
Revelation 19:20The Beast and False Prophet correspond to the Evil King and Prostitute of Babylon, both of whom are empowered by Satan. The False Prophet performed miracles to deceive those who received the mark of the Beast and worshipped his idol. The idolatry was actually the worship of Satan.
And the Beast (Dictator) was seized, and with him the False Prophet, who performed the miracles on behalf of him, by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the Beast and those who worshiped his idol; these two were thrown alive into the Lake of Fire, which burns with brimstone.
Satan will be incarcerated in the Abyss, which is the dungeon beneath Hades. It is called Tartarus (2 Pet 2:4), the Bottomless Pit (Rev 9:1-2), and the Abyss (usually translated Sheol, deep, or pit) (Job 26:6; 31:12; Psa 55:23; 63:9; 88:6; 140:10; Prov 15:11; Rev 9:11; 11:7; 17:8; 20:1, 3). It is where the antediluvian angels were locked up (Jude 1:6).
Revelation 20:8Even though they are in perfect environment like the Garden, he will incite a rebellion against Israel. The enemies will include Gog and Magog, who are the enemies from the North in the region of Russia, from where the King of the North came in the Armageddon War (Ezek 38, 39).
and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the Earth, Gog and Magog, to assemble them for battle, whose number is as the sand of the seashore.
Revelation 20:9The armies of the Gog Revolution will cross the broad plain of Israel and surround the camp of the saints and Jerusalem. "Camp" is the Greek parembolhv (parembole), for a (fortified) camp. However, Divine intervention of fire from Heaven will consume the invading armies.
And they came up on the broad plain of the Land and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city (Jerusalem), and fire came down from Heaven and consumed them.
Revelation 20:10 Satan's JudgmentAfter the Gog Revolution is put down, Satan will receive his final Judgment. He lost the Appeal Trial, and he will be thrown into the Lake of Fire along with his demons. There they will be tormented forever and ever.
And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the Lake of Fire and brimstone (burning sulfur), where the Beast (Dictator) and the False Prophet are located; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
The name Satan comes from the verb meaning verb /f^c*, (satan), meaning to oppose, treat with enmity. Thus, Satan means enemy or adversary. Satan is known as the evil one and the enemy. His policy is evil. It brings harm and injury. Satan is the enemy of the Lord Jesus Christ and His followers, including believers and the Elect Angels. Satan, the enemy, sent Jesus Christ to the Cross. The enemy is symbolized by Scorpius, the Scorpion. The enemy opposes the Plan of God. After rebelling against God, Satan is fighting a war against the Angels of God.
The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil was set up in the Garden so that man could choose between the Plan of God (Good) and Satan's Plan (Evil). When the man and the woman ate of the forbidden fruit, they died spiritually, and eventually they died physically. The whole world with its plants and animals was cursed by sin. The animals became wild, and thorns and thistles began to grow. And man lost the rulership of the world to Satan. The consequences of evil were catastrophic.
Satan as the enemy attacks believers. He attacked Job and took all that he had. He killed his children, took his livestock, destroyed his property, took his wife, and destroyed his health. He used Judas Iscariot to betray Jesus Christ, incited the chief priests, elders, and the crowds against Jesus, and pressured Pilate into ordering His execution. He prowls around like a roaring lion seeking believers to devour. He has the power to administer the Sin Leading to Death. He motivates murderers and criminals and drives people to suicide.
Satan as Baal is the enemy of children, Marriage, and Israel. Baal is worshiped with child sacrifice. Satan tried to destroy the Divine Institution of Marriage by having his demons marry women in the antediluvian civilization. And he arouses anti-Semitism to destroy Israel through the Holocaust.
Satan and his demons are filled with the most vicious, evil hatred and animosity. They are belligerent, spiteful, and vindictive. They hate Jesus Christ above all others, and they despise Christians. Those who are stupid enough to respond to Satan and his demons soon learn that they are vicious monsters. Demons can be pests that discover limitless ways to harass. There is no good in these creatures. They are malicious and evil to the core. They are the enemies of God, the enemies of Elect Angels, and the enemies of mankind. They even abuse animals.
Matthew 13:25When the wheat came up, the tares became visible also (Matt 13:26). The farmer knew that his enemy had done this (Matt 13:27, 28). So, he told his slaves to let the wheat and tares grow together until the harvest, when the tares could be safely removed without disturbing the wheat (Matt 13:29).
But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares in the midst of the wheat and went away.
Matthew 13:30Explanation of the Parable
Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, "Gather first the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn."
When His disciples asked Him to explain the parable of the wheat and tares, Jesus answered them.
Matthew 13:37-38Jesus was the sower of the good seeds, who were believers. The tares were the unbelievers, who followed the evil one.
37 And answering, He said, "The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man, 38 and the field is the world; and the good seed, these are the sons of the Kingdom; and the tares are the sons of the evil one;
Matthew 13:39The enemy was the devil. The harvest was the end of the Jewish age, corresponding to the end of the Tribulation. The Tribulation ends with the Second Advent. The reapers were the Elect Angels tasked with rounding up believers and unbelievers.
and the enemy who sowed them is the devil, and the harvest is the end of the Jewish age; and the reapers are the angels.
Matthew 13:40-42The tares being gathered and burned with fire symbolize the Baptism of Fire when unbelievers are thrown into Hell at the Second Advent (Matt 3:11; Lk 3:16).
40 So just as the tares are gathered up and burned with fire, so shall it be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His Kingdom all stumbling blocks and those who commit lawlessness, 42 and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place, there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 13:43The Righteous are the believers who are alive on the Earth at the Second Advent. They will populate the Millennial Kingdom.
Then the Righteous will shine forth as the Sun in the Kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.
Mark 4:15The seed sown beside the road symbolize people who hear the Gospel, but Satan immediately comes and takes away the message in their heart before they believe it. In the parallel verse in Matthew, Satan is called the evil one (Matt 13:19). As the evil one, he opposes the Gospel truth and defends his policy of evil.
These are the ones who are beside the road where the word is sown; and when they hear, immediately Satan comes and takes away the word which has been sown in them.
Luke 10:19Jesus gave his disciples authority to tread on serpents and scorpions. Serpents symbolize Satan (2 Cor 11:3; Rev 12:9, 14; 20:2). And scorpions symbolize the enemy (Satan) (Deut 8:15; Ezek 2:6; Lk 10:19; 11:12) and the demon assault army of Abaddon (Rev 9:3, 5, 10). Jesus gave the disciples authority over all the power of the enemy. This enabled them to cast out demons, which they could never have done before because Satan has authority over his demons. Jesus gave his disciples this miraculous power over Satan as credentials that they were His representatives (Matt 12:28; Lk 10:17).
Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing will in any way injure you.
Before Jesus went to the Cross, He prayed for His disciples to be protected from the evil one.
John 17:15Jesus prayed for protection for His disciples because He knew that when He left, Satan would attack the flock. He didn't pray for them to be taken out from the world. The world is under the control of Satan's Cosmic System. The disciples must stay in the world to be witnesses for Jesus Christ.
I do not ask You (Father) to take them out from the world, but to protect them from the evil one.
Sin makes a person vulnerable to the attack of the enemy. The believer in sin is under the power of the Old Sin Nature. And since he is in the Cosmic System, he is also under the power of Satan and his demons. Paul wrote the Corinthians to make sure that they had forgiven the believer who had turned away from incest. It was important for them to forgive him to prevent Satan from taking advantage of them because lack of forgiveness fosters sins of judging and legalism (2 Cor 2:10, 11).
Jesus Christ paid for our sins on the Cross to free us from slavery to sin.
Galatians 1:4Because Jesus Christ died as a substitute for our sins, we can be rescued "from the present evil age." This is the Church Age, but Satan still rules the world. The whole world is under the power of his evil in this age. We can be rescued by the work of Jesus Christ on the Cross. The payment for our sins opened the door for our Salvation. And when we sin after Salvation, we can Rebound and receive forgiveness for our sins, so that sin no longer enslaves us to the evil world of Satan.
who (Jesus) gave Himself as a substitute for our sins so that He might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father
Paul was hindered from visiting the Thessalonian congregation because Satan hindered him.
1 Thessalonians 2:18The believer who lives by Grace must stop when Satan blocks the way. If God does not open the door, there can be no advance in Grace.
Because we wanted to come to you – I, Paul, not only once, but twice – and Satan hindered us.
Advice to Younger Widows
The best protection against Satan is living the Spiritual life and operating under authority.
1 Timothy 5:14 Younger WidowsPaul's advice for younger widows was to get married, bear children, and manage their household. This would keep them under authority. And they were not to give the enemy "the slightest opportunity for reproach." In order to do this, they must stay out of sin, use Rebound, and be filled with the Holy Spirit. In contrast, reacting females who followed their sensual desires would be easy prey for the enemy.
Therefore, I want the younger widows to marry, bear children, manage the household, and give the enemy not the slightest opportunity for reproach.
1 Peter 5:8"Be sober" is the Greek nhvfw (nepho), which means to be in control, be circumspect. It means being free from every form of mental and spiritual drunkenness. It is a metaphor for Spiritual Self Esteem (SSE).3 The believer with SSE is in full use of his faculties, rational without illusion, adept in the use of the Divine operating assets and Problem Solving Devices, with X, Y, Z axes aligned, adept in Spiritual Warfare, with Spiritual Integrity (ECS) and cognitive self-confidence.
Be sober (in Spiritual Self Esteem); be alert. Your enemy, the devil, walks about like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.
The believer in SSE is not seduced because of illusions of darkness from the Cosmic System. A person in control spiritually will not be a sucker and easily victimized by Satan's trickery. He will keep control of himself when Satan attacks.
"Your enemy, the devil." Satan is the enemy of the believer. He is called the devil, meaning slanderer. He prowls around like a roaring lion. A lion symbolizes a Throne Angel. Satan was the highest ranking Throne Angel. The implication is that the lion is looking for prey to attack. The prey is the believer who is a straggler from the flock. Believers who wander into Reversionism are easy prey for Satan.
Satan's attack, which may come from him or his demons, must be resisted.
1 Peter 5:9 ResistSatan must be resisted solidly from faith, which means he must be opposed by the application of Bible Doctrine in the Filling of the Holy Spirit. This is best accomplished with a completed Edification Complex of the Soul. Bible Doctrine is the protection against Satan and his demons. Resisting must be accomplished in Grace (see Dealing with Demons in Grace).4 Those who become cocky and boast of their exploits over the devil, are not Grace oriented. In their arrogance they have played into the hands of the devil. There is no command to attack Satan. Resisting is defensive. The battle is the Lord's.
Whom resist solidly in your faith, knowing that the same kind of sufferings are being accomplished on your brethren who are in the world.
Author: Larry Wood, Released - May 4, 2013 - Revised Dec. 4, 2014