Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Bullies (08/09/04)
TITLE: The Demonic Bully
By J. C. Lamont
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It all began in the Garden of Eden. Satan slyly suggests to the unsuspecting couple, “you will become just like God (Gen. 3:5).” It is his ultimate goal. What better way to reject the one true God, then to believe that you are a god, that you set your own rules, that you answer to no one but yourself.
Satan is the ultimate bully, chipping away at the foundations of Christianity, turning the world away from the one true God in an attempt to defame and destroy the message of the cross. His ultimate plan: deny the existence of God or deny that Christ is God. Either one leads to hell.
After he achieved getting sin and death into the world, Satan started his campaign against the saints, requesting permission to torment, distress, and accuse those who follow God.
Even Christ wasn’t safe from being bullied by him. “If you are the Son of God….” Satan taunted wickedly; but Jesus’ knowledge of the Scriptures overcame the tempter. Yet this wasn’t the only time Christ was bullied. His deity was called into question time and time again by the Pharisees and other religious leaders, his own people, and even his brothers.
The Bully of the Present
We don’t need God, science has proven that. Or has it? Peter predicted evolution in his second epistle describing the last days before Christ’s return, “They deliberately forget that God made the heavens by the word of His command, and He brought the earth up from the water and surrounded it with water. Then He used the water to destroy the world with a mighty flood” (2 Pet. 3:5-6). In substituting Creation for a cosmic accident and denying a worldwide flood which biblically proves fossilization, the door is left wide open for people to logically deny God. Logically? “Only fools say in their hearts, ‘There is no God’." (Psalm 53:1).
Atheism and Secular Humanism do not “fool” everyone though. Too many people feel a void deep inside, a longing for “spirituality”, a quest to find something outside themselves, outside this world. Satan’s tactic: the universal religion, the “all roads lead to God” approach. Truth is being taught as relative, sexual orientation is becoming a matter of choice even within the church, and tolerance of religion is promoted – except for the intolerant religion, namely Christianity. The only downfall to this plan: Jesus and his famous statement, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one can come to the Father except through Me” (John 16:4).
Satan has tried repeatedly to conform this “intolerance” but never has he succeeded quite as well then through Dan Brown's best-selling novel, The Da Vinci Code. In the guise of fiction, Brown carefully weaves what he calls thoroughly researched evidence substantiating his claims: Jesus was merely a man who was voted “divine” by the Council of Nicaea in 325AD. Questioning the validity of historical Christianity, he proclaims, with the support of the Gnostic gospels, that Jesus’ message and true Christianity, is paganistic goddess worship.
The Bully of the Future
Neo-paganism is setting the stage for the events of the apocalypse. Closely tied to Wicca, the 21st century term for witchcraft, neo-paganism is the making for the universal religion spoken of by the apostle John in Revelation. In Revelation 9:21, John specifically states, “they did not stop practicing witchcraft.” Neo-paganism offers a tolerant religious unity, and now with Dan Brown’s book, can even include Christianity, albeit a Christianity without a divine Christ.
Though Satan at times seems to be winning, “the gates of hell will not prevail against the Church” (Matt. 16:18). The time will come when this bully will be cast out of heaven, no longer allowed to accuse the saints, and when Jesus returns, he will be cast into the bottomless pit and eventually thrown into the lake of fire for eternity.
Standing up to the Bully
In the mean time, we as the saints of Christ must be ready for Satan’s attack. If we resist him, he will be forced to flee from us. We must also be ready to defend our faith, to put on the armor of God, to know the Scriptures as Christ did, and be familiar with this bully’s tactics and strategies so that we can counter them. As 1 Peter 3:15 says, “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.”