Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Omnishambles (05/01/14)
TITLE: The Kingdom of the Serpent
By Diane M. Bowman
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"Son," the Father said, "I want you to create a world. Put all manner of living creatures and herbs in it. Make it an absolute paradise and give control of it to, hmm..., let's make a superior type of creature and call them 'man.' We will design them in our image and give them the power of thought and choice. Instill in them a desire for relationships that are as complete as what we experience with each other. Provide all they need to live but, to teach them to learn from us, also give them one tree which eating from it would not be wise."
"You remember Lucifer, the son of the morning, who was lifted up with pride and decided to try to be like us? He'll want a part of it. Let's let him try. Give the people a choice who they want to serve, him or us."
The Son did all that the Father asked. He made a world, gave it light for the day and night, placed trees and herbs in it, as well all kinds and types of animals. Then He made Adam and Eve, the extraordinary creation who He would place in charge of it all.
Lucifer, the serpent, convinced those first two people to eat from the tree they didn't need. "Ahh," said Lucifer, "now this beautiful creation of God will serve me. His kingdom is in shambles."
However, God had selected a people out of the offspring of Adam and Eve to call His own, to woo them to serve Him. The descendants of Jacob chose to follow God. Nevertheless, Satan succeeded in drawing even God's special people away again and again. And from all appearances; the kingdom of God was in shambles.
Lucifer missed the fact that God already knew what would happen. At that first meeting, this was part of the discussion: "Also, Son, you know Lucifer is a thief. He will steal the hearts of our people and destroy their lives. To win them back, you must do one other thing. You will need to become one of them and take the punishment they deserve for turning away from us."
And so the Son did. One day, not really so long ago, on Calvary's hill, He died for you and me. From what anyone on earth could tell, the kingdom of the Son was in shambles.
But, you know what happened next. No one can kill God. The very idea is absurd. The Son rose from His grave and shook off those burial clothes and the kingdom of the serpent? It was in shambles.
Still, God continued to allow His people the power of choice. Their debt was paid but would they accept it? Would they choose freedom? The men who had followed Jesus closely while He walked the earth in human form proclaimed His deliverance in any way possible. They taught and pleaded from the temple, in the synagogues, in prisons, in homes, even upside down on a cross. Yet, Lucifer's men, the men who chose to be servants of that old wily serpent, killed as many as they could of God's people and scattered the rest to all parts of the known world. And for all anyone could discern, the kingdom of the Son was in shambles.
Let's go back now to the conversation before time began. There's one other part we don't want to miss. "Son, these people you die for, the ones who serve you to the end, they will be your glorious bride. When I decide I've given Lucifer enough time, I'll send you to earth again to bring them home forever."
And for this we wait. It won't be so long now. The chaos in this world is nearly finished. Someday soon, maybe yet today, we will see Jesus in the clouds, calling to us to come and join Him. And then, then at last, and for all eternity, the kingdom of the serpent will be in an omnishambles.
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