Outline And Introduction:
This study is taken from an outline very much like the one above, which I wrote in 1991. It will be the form I will use to give a 6,000 year overview of how we got where we are in relation to God's overall plan, which He laid out before the creation of the world.
- Satan's Deceptive Plan
- The Fundamental Lie of All False Religions
- BC: The Mystery Religions and Their Offshoots
- The Early Church: 0-499 AD
- Spiritual Degeneration: 500-1599
- The Enlightenment: 1600-1859
- First Deliberate Steps Toward a New Age: 1860-1949
- New Age Spiritual Foundation Begins Growth: 1950-1969
- The New Age Movement Born: 1970-1979
- New Age Enters Society's Mainstream: 1980-1989
- Entering the '90s: An Entrenched New Age Movement
- The Future - What Lies Ahead?
- God Will Bring His Plan to Completion
- Some Thoughts For the Moment
Throughout this study , I am going to try to emphasize the various ways Satan distorted God's character, God's plan, God's Lamb, and God's purpose for man.
I also want to give you some understanding of the world of the gods, from the devil's initial promise of godhood to Eve in the Garden, to the false gods Israel followed when they rebelled, to an understanding of how all of these gods of the nations will finally culminate in the devil's "incarnation" in the person of the antichrist.
SATAN'S FALL AND CURRENT GOAL
I have another goal I want to try to accomplish while unfolding the Devil's wicked schemes. That is to place the promises of God and their fulfillment in Christ alongside the methods devised by the evil one over millenniums to usurp the place of God. However, keep in mind that God knew man would fall, but He also knew the devil would fall. That's why He had His plan all laid out before He created anything or anybody. We often think of the visible creation as the beginning of God's acts, but it wasn't. I believe that God formed a plan, not after but before the devil fell. The Bible says that God spoke the worlds into existence (Hebrews 1:2; 11:3), and by using the plural, "worlds," I believe the writer meant two worlds: the natural world and the spirit world, with the spirit world having been created first. In Job 38, we find God questioning Job, asking him,
4 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. . . . 6 Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof; 7 When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?The morning stars, the sons of God, the angels, sang together in God's presence BEFORE the foundations of the world were laid. We weren't the first creatures. The angels were, but something happened to disrupt the singing and joy of the stars of God. That something, the Bible indicates, was a fall in the spiritual world. Revelation 12:3-4 seems to describe that fall:
3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, . . . 4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth. . . .In Isaiah 14, God seems to be referring to a man, a king, yet in some of the verses, he seems to be speaking to Lucifer, the serpent of Genesis:
12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! 13 For thou hast said in thy heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: 14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. 15 Yet thou shall be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.Jesus words also seem to refer the fall of Satan to the earth described in Revelation 12. In Luke 10, He said,
17 And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name. 18 And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven. 19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.These words make sense only if they're pointing to a past fall rather than a future one. That the disciples are speaking of their present power over demons presupposes a time in the past when these demons fell with Satan, as described in Revelation 12. This we know for sure. In the past, the devil fell from heaven, and he took angels with him. He is here on earth, and his demons are with him. Another fact is that his goal is to deceive the world into worshiping him as God. Revelation 13 says,
3 . . . and all the world wondered after the beast. 4 And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: . . . 7 and power was given him over all kindred's, and tongues, and nations. 8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.Scripture says the Devil will achieve his goal of being worshipped by all who won't follow Christ, that all the nations will find one man to be their acceptable their world ruler and god. How is the devil going to pull that off?
First of all, Satan has been scheming at getting the world to worship him since the creation of the world.
Second, in Revelation 13, God says He will allow Satan to have his way.
Third, 2 Thessalonians 2: 11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.
THE REBELLIOUS SCHEMES OF THE DEVIL
At dinner a short time ago, we were discussing the word "schemes" in relation to the devil, and it came out that the word "scheme" means "a well thought-out plan." Genesis 3:1 says,
"1 Now the serpent was MORE subtle than ANY beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?"The devil is a twister of words, a liar, even from the beginning. Jesus, in fact, says lying is his native language:
John 8:44 [Satan] was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.Since the fall, Satan has never faltered in his schemes to deceive man. His goal is always to get man to depart from the faith. In the New Testament, Paul directed the Church to "Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil" (Eph 6:11).
Vines Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words defines "wiles" in this way:
Gr. methodia - denotes craft, deceit, (meta, after, hodos, a way), a cunning device, a wile, and is translated "wiles (of error)" in Eph. 4:14, paraphrased as "they lie in wait to deceive", literally (with a view to) the craft of deceit; in 6:11, "the wiles (of the Devil)."So wiles, or schemes, means "after a way or a method," and that way or method is basically this: "to lie in wait to deceive." I don't believe the Apocryphal books are inspired, but in the book of Sirach, we find a good description of what "wiles" means. From Sirach 12:10-18:
10 Never trust your enemy; for his wickedness is like corrosion in bronze. 11 Even though he acts humbly and peaceably toward you, take care to be on your guard against him. Rub him as one polishes a brazen mirror, and you will find there is still corrosion. 12 Let him not stand near you, lest he oust you and take your place. Let him not stand at your right hand, lest he then demand your seat, and in the end you appreciate my advice, when you groan with regret, as I warned you. 13 Who pities a snake charmer when he is bitten, or anyone who goes near a wild beast? 14 So it is with the companion of the proud man, who is involved with his sins. 15 While you stand firm, he makes no bold move; but if you slip, he cannot hold back. 16 With his lips an enemy speaks sweetly, but in his heart he schemes to plunge you into the abyss. Though your enemy has tears in his eyes, if given the chance, he will never have enough of your blood. 17 If evil comes upon you, you will find him at hand, feigning to help, he will trip you up. 18 Then he will nod his head and clap his hands and hiss repeatedly, and show his true face.The Devil is coming in these last days "feigning to help," and in doing so he will trip up the world into global worship of himself. He will seek to plunge it into the abyss, an abyss Isaiah said is reserved for him. The wiles or methods of the Devil serve one purpose: to bring the world to a place where it worships him:
13 For thou hast said in thy heart,THE PERSON, CHARACTER AND OFFICE OF THE DEVIL
I WILL ascend into heaven,
I WILL exalt my throne above the stars of God:
I WILL sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
14 I WILL ascend above the heights of the clouds;
I WILL be like the most High (Isaiah 14).
I've already given some description of the devil's character, but let's look at more beliefs about who some of the cults think he is. I think these three examples pretty much give us the picture:
- First let me say that Satan IS an intelligent being, not a force or an energy, or man in his sinfulness. He is addressed in Scripture as a "YOU." In Ezek. 28:14,16, God said, "YOU were the anointed cherub who covers. And I placed YOU there. . . And YOU sinned." Only a living being can sin. A force cannot sin. An energy cannot sin. The devil is a person in the spirit realm. Satan is a person and sin is a nature or act, but here are some doctrines that deny his personhood as a separate entity from man:
- Some believe Satan is just an evil force based on the status quo, where if a society is basically evil, it is not Satanic, but a Satan. Saddham Hussein, for instance, calls the United States "that Satan."
- Others believe Satan is the evil in man. Witness Lee of the Local Church movement believes Satan is Sin, and that when man ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, he "ate Satan" and therefore Sin and Satan mingled and became one in man's flesh. When Christ became flesh, it is believed that God trapped Satan in the flesh because Jesus was sinless and when He died, He killed Satan, freeing us from Sin.
- Still others, like Barbara Marx Hubbard, believe Satan is the corporate body of "unbelievers" who would hinder the unification of all humanity to bring forth a new civilization. In her book, The Revelation, she comments about the dragon in Revelation 12:3-4:
"The dragon is the misuse of the powers of the intellect and individuality at the conclusion of the phase of self-centeredness from which we are soon to emerge. The dragon is the instrument of evil - Satan - God's selection process, which will weed out the self-centered from the God-centered" (p. 174). She says of Satan in man, "The fallen angel is that impulse in your being that urges you to believe only what your creature senses tell you: that you are separate from God and you will surely die." This is based on her belief that within each man is fallen-angel-of-God consciousness and a risen-Son-of-God consciousness, and that the fallen-angel consciousness tests men to see if they will believe they are still one with God or not. Satan, then, becomes the illusion in man that he is separated from God, and by overcoming this lie and attaining unity and therefore corporate godhood, Satan is defeated and the risen Christ appears in corporate humanity. Those who will not "be delivered" will be cleansed from the earth. But our next point shows Satan is a personal entity, apart from man or his flesh.
Satan tempted Jesus in Luke 4:1-12, showing he is a person with intellect, emotion and a will.
His rebellion is untiring. Even at the end of his 1,000 years of confinement during the millennium, he again deceives the nations for a short time.
He is morally responsible, shown by the judgment that has come and will come upon him. In John 16:11, Jesus said, "Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged." And, again, in Matthew 25:41, our Lord said, "Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels."
Regarding his nature, Satan is a creature created holy and perfect by God.
SATAN'S NAME IN SCRIPTURE
- He was perfect when created: Ezekiel 28:15 says, "Thou was perfect in thy ways from the day that thou was created, till iniquity was found in thee."
- He is an invisible spirit being, but finite and limited: Colossians 1:16 says, " 16 For by [Jesus] were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him." Job 1:6 and 2:1 both say Satan came with the sons of God, meaning the angels, to present themselves before the LORD."
- Satan was of the Cherubim class of angelic beings: He was called by God, "the anointed cherub" and the "covering cherub" in Ezekiel 28:14,16. He apparently still retains some degree of dignity as the leader of the fallen angels. Even Michael, the archangel and protector of Israel, didn't dispute with him over Moses body (Jude 8-9). Satan was a tremendously powerful archangel before he fell. Ezekiel leaves little doubt of that: "You had the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty . . . Every precious stone was your covering" (vv. 12-13).
Satan is called by many names in the Scriptures. Here are a few of his names describing his present position:
There are also other names for him. He's called Lucifer (Isaiah 14:12), Satan (Revelation 12:9), the Devil (Luke 4:2, 13), the Old Serpent (Revelation 12:9), the Great Dragon (Revelation 12:3), the Evil One (John 17:15), and the Destroyer (Revelation 9:11).
- The Prince Of The World: John 12:31 "Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out."
- The Prince Of The Powers Of The Air: Ephesians 2:2 "Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience."
- The God Of This Age: 2 Corinthians 4:4 "In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them."
- The Prince Or Chief Of Devils: Luke 11:15 "But some of them said, He casts out devils through Beelzebub the chief of the devils."
He is also called by names that indicate the kind of activity he carries on, such as the Tempter (Mark 4:3), the Accuser (Revelation 12:10), the Deceiver (Revelation 12:9), and "the spirit now at work in the sons of disobedience" (Ephesians 2:2).
SATAN'S PRIMARY WORK NECESSARY FOR THE NATIONS TO WORSHIP HIM
Satan must do two things to receive the worship he desires from the nations:
Satan "exalts himself above all that is called God." Do we see Satan's five "I will's" in this verse that describes the revelation of the antichrist in Jerusalem? He tried to bring about these five "I will's" once before in his original fall, and now he will try again, in the earthly realm, to exalt himself over the people of God in Jerusalem in the earthly realm:
- He must get men to believe or to continue to believe that Jesus did not come in the flesh, so that they will submit to the antichrist spirit:
1 John 4:3 And every spirit that confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.
Satan gets men to believe what he wants them to believe by blinding their minds to the truth of God's word.
- He must get men to believe the lie. From my research, I've found that "the lie" spoken here is that corporate man is God. Satan must get men to believe they are gods, in charge of their own destiny, and that the antichrist, or a man, is God, but not Jesus Christ as revealed in the Scriptures.
2 Thessalonians 2:3 . . . that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 4 Who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sits in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
I will ascend into heaven,We must make one thing clear here. Satan is only making his move toward being worshipped in Jerusalem because God is allowing the delusion, and that delusion is based on men wanting to hear what they want to hear:
I will exalt my throne above the stars of God:
I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.
I will ascend above the heights of the clouds;
I will be like the most High.
2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.The delusion does not lie in the power of Satan, but in the hearts of men. All Satan can do is prepare men's hearts to believe they can become god or control their own destiny, and then give them the methods to attain that. If you read Genesis, you'll see that underlying Eve's thought that the apple was good for food was another thought. Eating the apple was a means to an end. What got her was the intriguing idea that she would be as God. Listen to the words:
5 For God doth know that in THE DAY YE EAT thereof, THEN your eyes shall be opened, and YE SHALL BE as gods, knowing good and evil.The reward for eating was not apple pie, but supposed godhood. The principles of the snake in the Garden are the principles of the New Age today. They are four in number:
People who follow such ideas, be they in the Church or the New Age, are now experiencing Satan's delusion, a delusion allowed by God:
- "You will not surely die" - There is no death, only a progressive flow of life through Reincarnation, or an evolving into godhood as in the Manifest Sons, or Hubbard's Homo Universalis. There's no death, only a passing to a higher plane through reincarnation or evolution into godhood.
- "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened (which is really becoming blinded to God's ways)" - "Satan has blinded the minds of the unbelievers" because they refuse to believe the truth (2 Cor. 4:4).
- "And you will be like God" - Man is not a sinner, he is divine. Man's problem is not sin, it is a supposed lack of knowledge that inherently, he is God. All he must do is to spiritually evolve to a level where he realizes his godhood and is absorbed into the Cosmic Consciousness ("God"). The "Cosmic Consciousness" is simply the unity of all things, where all things become one because all things are god.
- "Knowing good and evil" - Karma - a good and evil life now determines the quality of life when reincarnated. It is not that we need a new life in Christ, a life we never had before, through repentance for sin. We only need to adjust our lives through each incarnation, according to our Karma, until we attain godhood, or attain perfection.
11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.We said earlier that "the delusion does not lie in the power of Satan, but in the hearts of men. All Satan can do is prepare men's hearts to believe they can become god or control their own destiny, and then give them the methods to attain that." That is what he has done from the beginning. Eat the apple, and you will be like god. This simple strategy has many forms with many names, but the basic pattern will always be there. And what he has provided for men throughout the ages are the methods to make men think they can attain to this godhood state. That is what these talks are all about. Satan had a plan, a plan to counter what God had intended to do right from the very beginning, though the adversary did not have a total knowledge of God's plan.
A LOOK AT OUR THREE CHIEF FACTORS IN SEEING GOD'S PLAN
In my first talk, we talked about:
Let's look at these in relation to Satan's strategies:
- Having a proper Starting Point of Reference, meaning, what God had planned from the beginning.
- Seeing the parts as a unified whole, meaning, God's plan with many parts to reveal Himself to man and lead men to Himself.
- Finding our Point of Coordination that it is God alone who will lead us to the expected end result, meaning, the culmination of His plan.
- We have to maintain a true Point of Reference, what God had determined before the creation of the world concerning Christ and humanity.
If we start with a false Point of Reference, then we are starting from a WRONG STARTING POINT. Any false starting point will only give a false perspective on what the Christian life is all about and what God wants to bring about. Some false starting points we mentioned in the first talk were that the Church is to be political to set up God's kingdom rule on earth, or a solver of problems in society. This belief is made possible because some in the Church start at the commission to Adam and the loss of dominion. But these are the wiles of the devil, and there is an evil strategy in back of such efforts. Since God began to put into effect His plan by creating the world and man, Satan's spiritual hosts have waged a persistent and endless counter-campaign to keep man ignorant of the divinely revealed truth that there is a plan. Satanic strategy always aims to deceive men to the greatest degree possible. Evil powers can confuse man in his attempt to interpret truth, but these powers cannot penetrate the sure defense of God's word. God has spoken His intent before creation, and in our day, that plan, that intent, that purpose has clearly been revealed concerning establishing the kingdom of God on earth: Christ will be the head over all things when He returns to judge the nations and establish God's kingdom. After a thousand years, He will lead all who have believed in Him to the Father. It is now becoming obvious that anything that does not point to our going through tribulation into the Millennium to the Father through the second coming of Christ is nothing but the wiles of the devil.
- We need to maintain the proper perspective of seeing the parts of God's plan as a working, unified whole.
If we don't see this, we will be spiritually near-sighted, and miss the beauty of the whole plan, as well as deceived into any number of false agendas. Some of those false agendas are now evident: a unified effort for world evangelization, the unity of all denominations, a centering around Mary as the way to Jesus, and a global celebration of a united Church in the year 2000 that will be the actual dawning of the long-promised Age of Aquarius. What is interesting about all of this is that the devil's strategy and plan also has many parts that make up a whole. Over the past 5-10 years, the Lord has taught many to discern each part as it surfaced, and now we see the whole picture of the devil's plan as well and can discern it by the plan God established 6,000 years ago. The realization for us should be this:
- Satan has an overall plan to bring all men to worship him, just as Christ is leading all believers to the Father's presence to worship Him.
- Pursuing any one part of Satan's agenda is a false starting point and puts one in danger of eventually being drawn into the working whole of the wrong plan. The parts of God's plan and the parts of Satan's plan cannot be mixed. I know of one lady who saw everything as a deception except the laughing phenomena, and it eventually destroyed her.
We need to maintain God's true Point of Coordination - Himself.If we start with a wrong Point of Reference, our procedures will be wrong, and our progress will be off course. The parts of the whole won't mesh together as they should. We would then be changing to another plan that would be coordinating our direction. Our Point of Reference (God before Creation) and our seeing the many parts as a whole (His activity in time, space and history) cannot be contaminated with parts from the adversary's plan. We need to keep pure our Point of Coordination, the standard, the measure God has established to make sure every part is a part of God's plan. Otherwise we could go off on the one wrong part we integrate into His plan and thus end up at a wrong destination. I believe discernment must be very, very thorough in the days ahead.
SATAN HAS COUNTERFEITED GOD'S PLAN
I want to close this talk by comparing God's plan with Satanic strategies so we can see that there is an alternative plan that has been designed and implemented by the enemy. It looks very similar to God's plan, and the only way to discern it properly is by who Jesus Christ is and what God planned for Him and us in the true plan. For instance, Barbara Marx Hubbard says Armageddon can be avoided, that if we unite and work together, we can bring harmony to the people of earth. That's an alternative scenario, but God has spoken. Armageddon will come, and peace will follow only after Jesus returns so that we will inherit the Kingdom, not establish it. The following is God's plan with some of Satan's counterfeits inserted at each point.
SYNOPSIS COMPARISON: BEFORE THE CREATION OF THE WORLD
1. God had a plan that He would follow with an ultimate purpose in mind.
1. Satan formed a plan that he would follow with an ultimate purpose in mind.
2. God would work out everything according to the purpose of His own will for His own satisfaction.
2. Satan would work out everything according to the purpose of his rebellious will for his own satisfaction.
SYNOPSIS: THE LAMB BEFORE THE CREATION OF THE WORLD
1. The holy, chosen Lamb is with the Father.
1. Satan was a holy Archangel who coveted and then challenged God's throne. In his pride, he wanted the worship due God.
2. The Lamb Incarnate is to be exalted over all things in heaven and on earth.
2. Satan would exalt himself over the stars of God through his five "I will's," and in his "incarnation" of antichrist, over "all that is called God, or that is worshipped, . . . showing himself to be God" (2 Thessalonians 2:4).
SYNOPSIS: GOD'S PURPOSE FOR MAN BEFORE CREATION:
1. For His own pleasure and satisfaction, God willed that He would have a family of adopted sons created after the image of the first-born.
1. Satan would do all he could to prevent God from having a family of adopted sons by deceiving the whole world into following and worshiping himself.
2. If man fell, God would restore him to holiness by grace because man would be unable to bring about his own restoration. God would do it "because of his own purpose and grace" by the work of the Lamb of God.
2. If Satan could instigate the fall of man, he would change man's Point of Reference, change the appearance of the parts of the whole and thus the whole itself, and alter God's designated Point of Coordination. By doing so, he could deceptively lead the whole world into his own purpose.
An example of this would be man's fall and the loss of dominion when Satan became the god of this world. Before God created anything, God said He planned to gather together all things under Christ, exalt Christ over all things and make Him the head over all things. The culmination of that comes in Revelation 19 where the rider on the white horse judges and subdues the nations. That rider is Christ, and He is given dominion to rule the earth and we with Him. But it is not we who accomplishes that. Jesus accomplishes that in His coming. So what does Satan do? He changes the Point of reference from God and what He determined before creation to man losing dominion. The result is Dominionism, Kingdom/Now Theology, Restorationism, Reconstructionism and the like. Even the Messianics are saying that we have to be restored to our Jewish roots, meaning everybody in the world. Why are they saying that? The Devil handed them a false starting point. He made the early Church the Point of Reference. In stead of a Sovereign God uniting Jews and Gentile as the unified whole to be attained, he made a Jewish God uniting Jew and Gentile. And then he made the Jewish culture, its celebrations and the Old Testament the Point of Coordination. All of this is to unite everybody into a global Jewish culture to establish a restored Dominion to man.
3. God promised to give man, "at his appointed season," "a faith and a knowledge [that would rest] on the hope of eternal life."
3. Satan has flooded the world with hundreds of cults and religions whose hope is based on a faith built on revelation or secret knowledge. He also has a time schedule based on God's schedule: he knows his time is short. His counterfeit of God's "appointed season" are phrases that have been heard often during the past five years, from the first Clinton campaign to the Toronto Blessing, "The time is now" or "Now is the time" or "It's time." This is the spirit of antichrist, who changes God's appointed seasons to give mankind "a false faith and a false knowledge on which would rest the hope of eternal life." Daniel said, "Da 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time."
4. All who accepted by faith the knowledge given by God would be destined for glory.
4. Satan devised a system where all who received initiation into the Mystery religions would attain union with God.
5. God purposed to sanctify us by the Spirit and His word so He could glorify us as sons.
5. Satan purposed to give us an alternative spiritual word to reach perfection, truth with a twist in it, in order to deceive.
6. By creating one new man through the cross, from Jews and Gentiles, God would manifest His wisdom "through the church . . . to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms according to his eternal purpose which [he would] accomplish in Christ Jesus our Lord."
6. Satan's strategies now include making the Jew and Gentile Church one new man, a "new" Israel that pulls down spiritual strongholds through spiritual warfare, prayer walking, etc. and brings the roots of Judaism to the world.
7. The mystery, once revealed, was to be shared in its fullness so man could cooperate with God in bringing about His ultimate intention through the preaching of the gospel.
7. Satan's Mystery religions, their initiations and their rites, disguised and modernized, have now penetrated many aspects of Christianity and the world.
8. The Church was to be established by the gospel. Then it would proclaim that gospel to the nations (the people) so they could accept God's offer to adopt them as His sons.
8. Satan has dreamed up a false gospel of unity with diversity, a gospel based on common values rather than Biblical truth so that the world may be one. This gospel is being taken to the nations through Toronto, the mobilization of the Ecumenical laity, the spread of Promise Keepers and the increasing numbers in the Marches For Jesus, capped off by a united global evangelization effort. This is the move by Satan to bring the whole into a position to worship him.
9. The Church would be commissioned to proclaim the full revelation of Christ, "that which was from the beginning."
9. Satan has saturated the Church with the Dominionist doctrine in order to restore the Dominion man lost "in the beginning" with a "new beginning."
10. All who believe would inherit a kingdom that the Father has already prepared for them.
10. All who believe in the uniting of all things to establish Dominion would establish a kingdom deceptively proposed to be the kingdom of God.
LITTLE CHILDREN, YOUNG MEN, FATHERS
I want to close with these verses from 1 John 2:
12 I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name's sake. 13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father. 14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one. 15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 17 And the world passes away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abides for ever.There is a progression here of growing into Christian maturity, and that maturity has to do with knowing the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, Him that is from the beginning. It is in this knowledge that the evil one is overcome. He is not overcome through prayer walking or new strategies of spiritual warfare. He is overcome by knowing God as revealed in the Scriptures, the God who was from the beginning. Look at this road to maturity:
12 I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name's sake. 13 . . . I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.What is he saying here? As little children, we know our sins are forgiven FOR HIS NAME'S SAKE. How did that happen? Because the Son of God became flesh in order to restore us to a position where God could fulfill what He originally intended. Look at this verse from 2 Timothy 1:
8 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; 9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, 10 But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:What does it mean that Christ abolished death through the gospel ACCORDING TO the Father's PURPOSE? It means our sins have been forgiven for His name's sake, for His purposes. The road to maturity begins when our emphasis shifts from what God did for us so our needs can be met TO what God did for Himself in Christ so His needs could be met. One is man-centered, childish, selfish, a wrong starting point, a changing of the Point of Reference, and, the most dangerous change of all, a change in the Point of Coordination. John is saying, "Grow up, 'For all that is in the world is not of the Father, but is of the world.'" Then why is our emphasis so often on all that is in the world that we think God must provide in order to satisfy our wants?
13 I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one.The young men John was speaking to had something in them that caused them to mature to young men in the Lord. Do you know what it was? What they learned as little children. Their emphasis was on knowing their sins were forgiven to live for the Father and His purpose, not for themselves and what they could get out of God. The forgiveness of sins and the abolishment of death in their spiritual lives was no longer to them a door of provision for the things of this world. They had come into the eternal things of God according to the mystery hid since the beginning of the world but now revealed to Paul for His name's sake. Their knowledge of God and His purposes, their faith that had its origins in the beginning of God's purposes, overcame the wicked one. They weren't going off trying to take Dominion back because they knew the Father and they knew, as John puts it in verses 16 and 17, "the world passes away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abides for ever." Let the devil offer them all the apples he wanted, but these young men knew their God and why he saved them - for Himself and for His purposes. They knew Him who was from THE BEGINNING. The devil could not change their Point of Reference, their picture of the Whole with All of its parts, their Point of Coordination. Why? because they knew HIM, His vision, His purpose, His plan, His desires, His very heart.
14 . . . I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.
13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning.Notice what it took to mature them as Fathers of the faith:
14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning.
verse 13 - ye have known him that is from the beginning.Wow! How simple. They KNEW Him who was from the beginning. That means they knew what He had planned - they had their Point of Reference right. They saw how all the parts made up one, unified whole. They knew it was He who is bringing the plan to completion, and as this later verse says,
verse 14 - ye have known him that is from the beginning.
24 Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. 25 And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.Now look at the next verse and see what this did for them:
26 These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you.They couldn't be seduced by the wiles of the evil one.
In the next Part, we will begin to get into the seductions of the devil by tracing some of the counterfeit religions and mystery religions and cults of the evil one, along with the promises of God in those particular time frame.