Thursday, July 10, 2008

Satan’s Influence

I should have started with this before posting “The Flesh is a Personality”, live and learn is what it is all about.

We should not be surprised by the fact that the idea of Satan in the flesh is inherently offensive to us in our worldly understanding. This offense is, in a curious way, one more bit of evidence that this is a true representation of our condition in this world. I can say this because Satan is a liar and the father of lies:
John 8:44

The most dreadful prospect for a liar is exposure. For this reason we would expect a swift and strong reaction of the flesh to exposure of its true identity. The clear light of truth is death to one who lives by falsehood. The only power a lie has comes from our belief in it. Once the truth is known and accepted, the liar and his lies can no longer exert any influence over our living.This is why Scripture tells us that the truth is liberating to us: John 8:32 Given the gravity of this situation, it would be naive for us to expect the truth about the flesh to come to us without some considerable resistance.

Recognizing the true identity and condition of the flesh is a great step toward the reduction of the evil one’s influence in our living. Once we see the true condition of our being we are well on our way to constructively dealing with Satan’s influence in our daily life. It is true that the devil will always need to be resisted but our proper recognition of his working in us makes that dealing much easier and more effective. Any danger that is recognized for its true potential for harm is not nearly as much of a threat as an unrecognized or unappreciated risk.

Another aspect of this truth that Satan dwells in our physical body as the flesh is our reaction to this truth. We have all been the victims of years of exposure to the lies of the evil one. This exposure to falsehood has biased us in our thinking and understanding of how the world operates. The last thing that Satan wants is for us to see the truth about anything—especially the truth about our need to be healed and spiritually completed. As long as the evil one can keep us convinced that we are spiritually healthy or at least very nearly good in our natural state, he can block us from turning to the one true source of life and spiritual health—Christ. This includes not only interfering with our salvation but also complicating our daily surrender to letting Christ operate as our only effective source for living.
I would be more suspicious of the validity of the idea of Satan in the flesh if it were easily acceptable to my intellectual understanding than if it came as it does with some conflict. The devil will never give up his resistance to God and to our well-being. The only way we can ever know if our objection to an idea is due to its truth or falsehood is by spiritual discernment.



Free Spirit said...

Gollee, Rich. You took me right to the deep end here. Really good stuff. It may take another reading or 2 to really get it. I've got lies coming from different agents right now, that need some light shed on them.

Dave A. said...

Very, very good. And for me as well I find it hard to understand and swallow intellectually. But Christ in me says it is so. We are grateful that greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world.

Rich said...

free spirit and dave,

Thanks for at least being open to the possibility of this being remotely true!

I love what you said Dave, "And for me as well I find it hard to understand and swallow intellectually. But Christ in me says it is so."

I am in the same boat as you are, I do NOT pretend to comprehend the deepths of what Bill is sharing in his books, but all I know is that I know it to be true in the core of my being :)

In my opinion, the Mystery of Christ in you the hope of glory, is incomplete without knowing (like anything and everything else having further revelation) the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth about our flesh.

On a personal note, for my wife and I in continuing to be taught and instructed of the Lord regrading what I have been sharing here from Bill's thoughts, we have seen more head way in our relationship than ever before.

Like anything that the Father has to offer, it is for 'who-so-ever-wills,' and that is great News!