Serving Jesus through discipleship

Archive for the tag “Satan”

Why Galilee?

Sea of galilee, near Capernaum

Sea of galilee, near Capernaum (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After being tempted by Satan for forty days, Jesus returned to civilization and discovered that John the Baptist had been taken into custody. Upon hearing this, He withdrew into Galilee; leaving Nazareth He settle in Capernaum, which is by the sea in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: “The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, By the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles — The people who were sitting in darkness saw a great Light, And those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death, Upon them a Light dawned.” From that time Jesus began to preach and say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

We know that Jesus came, not to the Gentiles or to the Samaritans but to the Jews. His message included healing the sick, cleansing the lepers, and casting out demons. When the Canaanite woman approached Him near Tyre and Sidon, He admonished her saying, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

When Jesus’ message was not received, He denounced the cities that he was in and described a horrible fate for them.

Knowing that the people in the land of Galilee were religious people and that Jesus’ message to them was repent, What do you think His message to us would be today?


Is There Sin in Heaven?

When was the last time you read Genesis chapter 3? If you are familiar with the chapter, you know that Eve sinned because the serpent deceived her. Let me make a quick point here. The way Eve was deceived was that \the serpent asked, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” So Satan started by misquoting God. He was successful partly because Eve really didn’t know what God said either. Are we like that Do we really know our scripture? If you don’t, I believe that you have opened yourself up to be deceived. If you look, you can find other instances where Satan tempts by misquoting God!

Gustave Doré, Depiction of Satan, the antagoni...

Gustave Doré, Depiction of Satan, the antagonist of John Milton’s Paradise Lost c. 1866 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The reason I asked the question is, the passage I read today, 1 Kings 22:19 – 23, speaks of a deception that originates at the throne of God. God asks the Heavenly host, “Who will entice Ahab to go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead?” There was one spirit that volunteered to be a deceiving spirit and entice Ahab. God basically said sounds like a good plan to me. So the deceit of Ahab started at the throne of God! Does this mean that God is the source of the deception?

I don’t think so! God did however, allow the deception to take place. The deceiver (Satan?) was before the throne of God when this plan was hatched. The deception was not God’s idea, but it does prove that God will use sin to accomplish His perfect plan.

So the question remains: Is there sin in heaven? Not for long!

Keeping Your Way Pure

English: Scroll of the Psalms

English: Scroll of the Psalms (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How can a young man keep his way pure?

By keeping it according to Your word.

With all my heart I have sought You;

Do not let me wander from Your commandments.

Your word I have treasured in my heart,

That I may not sin against You.

Blessed are You, O Lord;

Teach me Your statutes.

The author of Psalm 119 (verses 9 – 12 above) is unknown although thought to have been written by King David. I will attribute this Psalm to David.

David poses an interesting question. “How can a young man keep his way pure?” For that matter, how can an old man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to the word of God! We seem to have forgotten this in modern western culture. God’s word seems to be relegated to Sunday morning and maybe Wednesday night. When you only think about God’s word a few hours a week, how can you live in it? I realize that is a generalization and that I could be wrong, but evaluate the situation in this country and judge for yourself.

In verse 10, David implies what is written in Jeremiah. With all my heart I have sought You; Do not let me wander from Your commandments. This implies that if you seek God with all your heart, you will find Him. On finding Him, He will guide your way. David is praying that God will help David keep his commandments. Do we pray like that today. Oh sure, when we recite the Lord’s Prayer we say, “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” When we pray that, do we really mean it? Are we really asking God to help us keep our way pure; or is it just part of the prayer that we recite? The key is the seek Him with all your heart. In Jeremiah, this promise from God was for a specific instance. Deliverance from Babylon. This psalm implies that this is a universal truth. Even Jesus said, “seek and you shall find”.

David also said, “Your word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against you.” What does it mean to treasure God’s word in your heart. If God’s word is in your heart, no one can steal it; no one can use it out of context without your knowledge; no one can miscopy it. It is yours. Jesus demonstrated this when he was in the desert being tempted by Satan, Satan apparently quoted scripture to tempt Jesus. Jesus responded with scripture correctly interpreted and applied. This was the full armor of God in action. In the New Testament, Paul commands us to put on the full armor of God.

You know, you can’t learn and understand God’s word without the teaching of the Holy Spirit. You can’t stay away from sin without His power. This is why Jesus sent Him to dwell within us. So that we may learn God’s statutes and correctly apply them.

The grace of God is wonderful! He asks us to seek us with all our heart, and then gives us the means to do it. Blessed be the name of the Lord!

Will you earnestly seek Him?

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