Bible Stuff That Won't Bore You

The real battle against sin takes place in the heavens, the enemy rejoices when we stumble

The war between light and darkness is not limited to whether we choose to resist sin or not, the true battlefield extends into the heavens, as our stumbles give satan reasons to mock God–a sobering thought!

We Are Not Above The Same Temptations And Tests Jesus Himself Was Subjected To

Okay, to start, when battling temptation or facing trials, God would never ask us to do something he himself did not do or that was impossible for us to accomplish

It is no mystery God called us to be righteous and resist sin, however, did you know satan himself goes before God’s throne and asks for permission to test us with temptations and trials, and, sometimes, God lets him take his best shot


Luke 22:31-32
Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat.But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers

Job 1:6-12
One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them.The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”

Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it”

Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears Godand shuns evil”

“Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land.But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face”

The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your hands, but on the man himself do not lay a finger”

It is amazing to look at the case of Job, as God put a piece of his own reputation behind Job’s character, which satan reacts to, saying Job is above temptation because of God’s protection and blessings, so God gives satan carte blanche to go and destroy his life to demonstrate how Job cared more about his relationship with God than to curse him because his life got turned upside down


However, in another well known case of temptation, let us look at Jesus being tempted in the wilderness, as the stakes were much higher, since God’s very character, credibility, and the salvation of all creation was on the line–a temptation/test God allowed to take place

This is a long quotation, but it is amazing–read the whole thing!

Luke 4:1-13
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry

The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread”

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone’”

The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world.And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor, for it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. So if you worship me, it will all be yours”

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only’”

The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written:

“‘He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone’”

Jesus answered, “It says: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test’”

When the devil had finished all this tempting,he left him until an opportune time

This is incredible, as God allowed satan to test Jesus with a full array of worldly temptations, far beyond what we will ever be tempted with, and he stood firm, answering every temptation with scripture–something we should not only aspire to, but strive to accomplish with a sense of un-eclipsed urgency

It is interesting to know God and satan literally have conversations about mankind, and in some cases stake bragging rights on the outcome of the tests put in front of us, but how much bigger does the war against sin really get?

The Battle Against Sin Goes Beyond Our Guilty Consciences And God’s Forgiveness, It Is Waged In The Heavens

For one thing, it is mind boggling to know how far our personal war against sin reaches, as the heavens rejoice when people repent and turn away from sin to seek God with sincerity–both Christians and non-Christians can be in need of true repentance, as we are not yet completely righteous

Luke 15:7
I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent

Yet, despite this celebration, though it is ironic how we marvel at God being even remotely mindful of us, we misunderstand how the heavens are so aware of some of us, that, in some cases, both sides want to take each other’s champions down–just like we saw in Job, the heavens literally want to put bragging rights on the steadfastness of our character, isn’t that crazy?

Psalm 8:4
what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?

Revelation 12:10
For the accuser of our brothers,who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down

Luke 22:31-32
Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers

However, this battle can get complicated, and deeply misunderstood, as even though we can be blessed, have ministries, etc…, we can still be trampled on like Job for the sake of demonstrating the character God has inspired within us, whether by overcoming sin and temptation or by facing trials and hardship with unwavering trust, faith, and hope in God–this means not giving up, getting angry at God or caving into temptation because resisting feels “difficult”

Paul was no stranger to this, as he had an amazing ministry, but spent a tremendous amount of time in jail, took beatings, received persecution to no end, and spent his life completely destitute–all for the sake of the gospel, with his hardships being in full view of the heavens

1 Corinthians 4:9
For it seems to me that God has put us apostles on display at the end of the procession, like men condemned to die in the arena. We have been made a spectacle to the whole universe, to angels as well as to men

On the flip side of this, when we stand firm when faced with temptations, trials, etc… through God’s power, we demonstrate God’s work within us to the heavens as well, by continuously overcoming the world’s temptations/trials through determination, and relentless persistence, keeping our eyes set on the prize waiting for us in heaven, just like Jesus did–we do not give up, or give in, because things get difficult, we look forward to our reward in heaven with the joy that only comes through sincere faith

Hebrews 12:2
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God

John 16:33
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have over come the world

1 John 5:3-4
This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome,for everyone born of Godovercomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith

1 John 5:18-19
We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the one who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him.We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world is under the control of the evil one

Even though Jesus overcame sin and death on the cross, which was a battle in the spiritual realm, not on earth, we often overlook how the war against sin in our personal lives is not just in our mind, but is also waged against the powers of the spiritual realm, Paul discussed this very clearly here:

Ephesians 6:12
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms

This means the people who hurt us, the temptations we face, the trials we struggle with, etc… are flung at us from the vast spiritual powers and authorities that satan employs to lead the world astray–the very same army he has used since the creation of the world to try and take people down so he can mock God, purely out of spite and anger

Revelation 12:3-4
Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads. His tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth

Revelation 12:7-9
And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him

That puts our fight to overcome the world in perspective doesn’t it

The very angels who rejected God in favor of death, darkness, and rebellion, are the very same powerful, ugly, evil spirits that want to tempt us to sin–these are the same angels who waged war against Michael, a third of the angels in heaven, so they are not exactly a bunch of wimps incapable of swaying us, as the verse above clearly says satan “leads the whole world astray”

However, in an even more amazing point, these same fallen angels who seek to lead the world astray, are the very ones Jesus made a “spectacle” of while on the cross, as he overpowered them, along with death, to show that God’s power was supreme–he not only lived a life without sin as a man, but was resurrected in power so that we may overcome sin, and share in eternal life ourselves if we overcome like Jesus did, through the very same power he was given by God while here as a man

If these next verses do not get you excited, read them again until they do, this is amazing!

Ephesians 6:12
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms

Colossians 2:15
And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross

Revelation 1:4-6
Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness,the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth

To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood,and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father—to him be glory and power for ever and ever!

(The highlighted text is in reference to the spiritual powers and authorities Paul talks about above in Ephesians–the earth is satan’s kingdom as mentioned above in Revelation 12)

2 Corinthians 5:21
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God

Revelation 2:7
To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God

Mind blowing stuff!

The Only Way Satan Can Hurt God Is By Having Us Sin

We know satan has no power over God in any way

This means he cannot overturn God’s work, operate outside of his will or do things that God does not allow, further to this, satan has no power that God himself did not give him in the first place

Remember that satan, and his angels, were kicked out of heaven because they were not powerful enough to overcome God’s righteous angels, much less stand against God himself without getting kicked into their hats–this means the only fights satan can win are the wars over our individual souls

These individual wars are the only battles satan has a chance to win, and, sadly, he has dominated these conflicts since the dawn of time

Our Sin Hurts God’s Feelings In Ways We Cannot Begin To Understand

For example, God destroyed the earth in Noah’s time because it was so vile, filled with endless sin, that he literally became grieved he created mankind–can you imagine that, the thought of God feeling such pain over us causes me to burst into tears when I read the passage below

Genesis 6:5-6
The Lord saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time.The Lord was grievedthat he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain

Isn’t that awful?

Now, think about how much God is grieved due to sin, and consider how he feels when satan comes before his throne and says:

“Oh wow, they crumpled like a dixie cup as soon as I offered them a new relationship, I could not have kept them out of bed even if I wanted to–your love is so powerful, I really see how it changes lives!”

“No seriously, nice work on that one, they look so righteous on the outside, but we know their real love is money–who cares what other Christians think, you and I know where that one is going, I am happy to let the entire world think they are upright”

“Watch this, I bet I do not even have to tempt them with anything today and they will be up until 2am obsessively pouring over porn again–now that is the true power of grace, not even facing hardship or temptation but turning to death for happiness rather than you”

“Oh, I bet you just love that one, they are not actually giving in to temptation, but the temptation is burning a hole in their brain because they really want to. You know what, I am going to let that one simmer for a while, the anticipation is more satisfying than actually pushing them over the edge anyway”

“Don’t you just love how many completely “genuine” people fill your churches up every Sunday morning, they sing your praises even though they are still my slaves without even the slightest sense of remorse. I mean honestly, that amount of irreverence must really warm your heart, nice tithing too by the way”

“Oh come on, you have to admit, I really out did myself on that one. No really, I had serious doubts tempting them with an elite social circle and a better job was going to work. I bet all the people their charity work helped will miss them, but Tad and Kaka will appreciate some new faces at all those swanky parties”

Apart from God hating sin so much, this is why God turns his face away from us when we reject his ways, as it is incredibly painful for him, especially after having paid for our sins with his own blood–he gets mocked even worse now than before since we supposedly have grace (ie: God’s divine influence on our hearts) guiding us

Habakkuk 1:13
Your eyes are too pure to look on evil; you cannot tolerate wrong

Psalm 34:15-16
The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their cry; the face of the Lord is againstthose who do evil,to cut off the memory of them from the earth

Now, before people start saying “That is from the OT, and I live under grace now, God always stays by my side no matter how I live!”, well, Bad Doctrine McGee, here is a wake up call from Peter:

1 Peter 3:12
For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil

Oh snap

Peter quotes the exact same verse from Psalm while telling his audience, Christian believers, about how God regards the righteous differently than those who disobey him

The only things done away with under the new covenant were the regulations and formality of the law, not God’s perspective on how much he hates sin or his reaction when we choose it

(I mean honestly, show me one verse in the NT that says God embraces Christians when they openly rebel against him, refusing to let go of sin in their lives out of preference for it. No really, go ahead, it is probably in the back somewhere, maybe in Second Hezekiah)

Really think about this though, as we should consider God’s feelings when we are faced with difficult situations that lead either to sin or separation from God if mishandled, and even if we stumble, which we inevitably will, we should repent with the full knowledge that God’s feelings are hurt when we sin, but he welcomes us back into his arms when we sincerely repent–even God does not like a disingenuous “sorry”

We should do everything we can to live in a way that pleases God, giving him cause to rejoice over us–living in a manner that is worthy of the gospel we claim to have anchored our souls to, otherwise satan will be laughing at both God and us when we stumble

An awful, awful thought

Zephaniah 3:17
The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing

1 Thessalonians 4:1
Finally, brothers, we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living. Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more

Philippians 1:27
Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ

And remember, satan hates a strong opponent, he will literally flee, just like he fled from Jesus in the desert, when we resist him since he is incredibly prideful, and hates to lose, which was the cause of his original downfall, and serves as his biggest weakness still

So, rebuke temptation in the name of Jesus, and lay down everything sinful so that we may give heaven something to celebrate over, instead of giving them a reason to /facepalm

Ezekiel 28:17
Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth; I made a spectacle of you before kings

James 4:7
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you

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