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VerticalReality
Jan 23rd 2011, 01:25 AM
Throughout the Old Testament you see numerous accounts of foreign lands coming against Israel, and when Israel did not abide in the Lord you see those enemies victorious, at least temporarily, over God's people. You also see things like plagues, locusts and grasshoppers, etc., coming against God's people and devouring their bodies, lands and crops.

I would propose to you all that things like foreign armies, plagues, locusts and grasshoppers are symbolic of our adversary the devil who goes about seeking whom he may devour. He comes not but to steal, kill and destroy. He is the destroyer. Therefore, I think we can look at these examples in the Old Testament and see what sort of tactics our enemy will attempt to use against us. What gives him leeway into our land? What allows him to devour our fruit?

Disobedience, of course. Unbelief, you bet! I would like to hear from you all. How can we identify our enemy and give him a swift kick out of our lives?

Brother Mark
Jan 23rd 2011, 02:01 AM
This is absolutely the truth VR!

Here's some OT symbols that make the point very, very well.

Gen 3:1

3 Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made.
NASU

Is this verse simply saying that snakes are smarter than cows? Is it saying that Satan was smarter than bulls? I don't think either is right. God is saying here, IMO, that Satan is smarter than his demons. Demons are called "beasts of the field", IMO, or "wild beasts" in scripture. Here's a NT verse.

1 Cor 15:32
32 If from human motives I fought with wild beasts at Ephesus, what does it profit me?
NASU

What was Paul fighting in Ephesus? Didn't he say that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood? He was fighting demons there. Once that is established, then Habbakuk makes some sense. He starts off with an interesting statement...

Hab 1:5

5 " Look among the nations! Observe!
Be astonished! Wonder!
Because I am doing something in your days —
You would not believe if you were told.
NASU

Why does he say this? Because he will use the wicked to correct the righteous.


Hab 1:12

12 Are You not from everlasting,
O Lord, my God, my Holy One?
We will not die.
You, O Lord, have appointed them to judge;
And You, O Rock, have established them to correct.
NASU

How does God describe these folks?


Hab 1:8
8 "Their horses are swifter than leopards
And keener than wolves in the evening.
Their horsemen come galloping,
Their horsemen come from afar;
They fly like an eagle swooping down to devour.
NASU

He describes them as wild beast. We see the same principle at work in 1 Cor. 5 when God turned out the man in sin to Satan. Also, it sheds light on Jesus in the wilderness when he was being tempted.

Mark 1:13
13 And He was in the wilderness forty days being tempted by Satan; and He was with the wild beasts, and the angels were ministering to Him.
NASU

The temptation of Christ was so strong by the enemy and his hordes, that God sent angels to minister to Jesus. God uses the enemy to test, and to correct. He used the enemy to test Jesus. He used the enemy to correct the man in 1 Cor. 5. He did the same thing in the OT illustrations.

AndrewBaptistFL
Jan 23rd 2011, 03:16 AM
I read something a while back (no sure from who) saying that what we declare publicly, we will be tested in privately. This makes sense to me when I see pastors preaching (adamantly) against a homosexual lifestyle being caught with a male prostitute.
It’s almost as if Satan hears us say something like “I’ve been free from pornography for five years” and then sends a tsunami of sexual-related temptation against us. If he can help us fall into public disgrace, especially in an area where we’ve praised God for freedom in, then he’s won a victory (great or small) in the minds of everyone around us.

TomH
Jan 23rd 2011, 03:56 AM
Satan is an opportunist.

He began with temptation and is a tempter still.
Anything that would be considered adversarial is with Gods consent.

We are our own worst enemy. The battle is internal, or as Paul stated,

Romans 7:23-25 (King James Version)

23But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

24O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

Neanias
Jan 27th 2011, 12:59 AM
I think we have both the world and the devil as enemies. We must overcome the devil. We must overcome the world. We must also be overcome by Christ. The old man is also our enemy, and this because he is the devil's ally in us. He follows the devil.

I think what you say is very true, VR. But I think it is not only the devil's strategies that are revealed, but also the flaws of the fallen man, and the temptations of the world (like compromise).

Joh 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

2Pe 2:20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.

'To he who overcomes, I will give to eat of the tree of life' says Jesus.

I think our overcoming is threefold. We must overcome the world, the devil, and the old nature.

Thats my two cents... :)

Blessings to you all

Neanias
Jan 27th 2011, 01:08 AM
I'll just add this.

I think we must both overcome the old man and be overcome by Christ. There is a part for us to do, and a part that God does, because we are unable to do it. After all, how can we give life if we don't first receive it? But at the same time, Christ's work will not be complete in us if we do not cooperate.

Gal 5:24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.

Rom 6:6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.