Sabbath, August 18, 2012
“And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel.” Genesis 3:15.
The adversary’s defeat
1. When was the prophecy that the seed of the woman would bruise the head of Satan fulfilled?
Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
Colossians 2:14, last part, 15 … To his cross; And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
“Christ bowed His head and died, but He held fast His faith and His submission to God. ‘And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.’ Revelation 12:10.
“Satan saw that his disguise was torn away. His administration was laid open before the unfallen angels and before the heavenly universe. He had revealed himself as a murderer….
“Christ did not yield up His life till He had accomplished the work which He came to do, and with His parting breath He exclaimed, ‘It is finished.’ John 19:30. The battle had been won. His right hand and His holy arm had gotten Him the victory. As a Conqueror He planted His banner on the eternal heights. Was there not joy among the angels? All heaven triumphed in the Saviour’s victory. Satan was defeated, and knew that his kingdom was lost.
“To the angels and the unfallen worlds the cry, ‘It is finished,’ had a deep significance. It was for them as well as for us that the great work of redemption had been accomplished. They with us share the fruits of Christ’s victory.” –The Desire of Ages, pp. 761, 758.
Satan expelled from heaven
2. What deception of Satan was exposed by the cross of Christ?
Luke 2:35 (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.
“Not until the death of Christ was the character of Satan clearly revealed to the angels or to the unfallen worlds. The archapostate had so clothed himself with deception that even holy beings had not understood his principles. They had not clearly seen the nature of his rebellion….
“He made it evident that the real purpose of his rebellion was to dethrone God, and to destroy Him through whom the love of God was shown….
“Satan saw that his disguise was torn away. His administration was laid open before the unfallen angels and before the heavenly universe. He had revealed himself as a murderer. By shedding the blood of the Son of God, he had uprooted himself from the sympathies of the heavenly beings.” –The Desire of Ages, pp. 758, 57, 761.
3. Satan crucified the Son of God after being cast out of heaven. What was the result of this?
Revelation 12:9, 10 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
“Opposition to the law of God had its beginning in the courts of heaven, with Lucifer, the covering cherub…. Then there was war in heaven, and Satan, with all who sympathized with him, was cast out.” –Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, pp. 972, 973.
“Christ bowed His head and died, but He held fast His faith and His submission to God. ‘And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.’ Revelation 12:10.” –The Desire of Ages, p. 761.
“The casting down of Satan as an accuser of the brethren in heaven was accomplished by the great work of Christ in giving up His life.” –Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 7, pp. 973.
4. Satan was expelled from heaven, being defeated by the Archangel Michael. Then, how could he continue to accuse the brethren to God?
Job 1:6, 7 Now it came to pass on the day when the sons of God came to present themselves before Jehovah, that Satan also came among them. And Jehovah said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered Jehovah, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
John 12:31 Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.
“When man became Satan’s captive, the dominion which he held, passed to his conqueror. Thus Satan became ‘the god of this world.’ 2 Corinthians 4:4. He had usurped that dominion over the earth which had been originally given to Adam. But Christ, by His sacrifice paying the penalty of sin, would not only redeem man, but recover the dominion which he had forfeited. All that was lost by the first Adam will be restored by the second.” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 67.
“Satan is ‘the accuser of the brethren,’ and it is his spirit that inspires men to watch for the errors and defects of the Lord’s people, and to hold them up to notice, while their good deeds are passed by without a mention. He is always active when God is at work for the salvation of souls. When the sons of God come to present themselves before the Lord, Satan comes also among them.” –The Great Controversy, pp. 395, 396.
Kingdom of grace
5. When did Satan lose the rulership of this earth? As a result, what kingdom was established?
Isaiah 61:2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn.
Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Matthew 4:17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Luke 17:21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.
“Satan’s dominion was that wrested from Adam, but Adam was the vicegerent of the Creator.” –The Desire of Ages, p. 129.
“The kingdom of grace was instituted immediately after the fall of man, when a plan was devised for the redemption of the guilty race. It then existed in the purpose and by the promise of God; and through faith, men could become its subjects. Yet it was not actually established until the death of Christ.” –The Great Controversy, pp. 347, 348.
“Henceforth his work was restricted. Whatever attitude he might assume, he could no longer await the angels as they came from the heavenly courts, and before them accuse Christ’s brethren of being clothed with the garments of blackness and the defilement of sin. The last link of sympathy between Satan and the heavenly world was broken.” –The Desire of Ages, p. 761.
6. What do the citizens of the kingdom of grace receive as a gift?
Ephesians 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.
1 Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.
“The law requires righteousness–a righteous life, a perfect character; and this man has not to give. He cannot meet the claims of God’s holy law. But Christ, coming to the earth as man, lived a holy life, and developed a perfect character. These He offers as a free gift to all who will receive them. His life stands for the life of men. Thus they have remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God. More than this, Christ imbues men with the attributes of God. He builds up the human character after the similitude of the divine character, a goodly fabric of spiritual strength and beauty. Thus the very righteousness of the law is fulfilled in the believer in Christ.” –The Desire of Ages, p. 762.
7. What other deception has Satan spread to oppose the kingdom of grace?
Daniel 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.
Hosea 8:1 Set the trumpet to thy mouth. He shall come as an eagle against the house of the Lord, because they have transgressed my covenant, and trespassed against my law.
“Another deception was now to be brought forward. Satan declared that mercy destroyed justice, that the death of Christ abrogated the Father’s law. Had it been possible for the law to be changed or abrogated, then Christ need not have died. But to abrogate the law would be to immortalize transgression, and place the world under Satan’s control. It was because the law was changeless, because man could be saved only through obedience to its precepts, that Jesus was lifted up on the cross. Yet the very means by which Christ established the law Satan represented as destroying it. Here will come the last conflict of the great controversy between Christ and Satan.” –The Desire of Ages, pp. 762, 763.
“The enemy of all good has turned the signpost round, so that it points to the path of disobedience as the path of happiness…. He has thought to change times and laws.“ –(Review and Herald, April 17, 1900) Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 4, p. 1172.
8. For how long will his war against God’s law continue?
Isaiah 24:5 The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.
Psalm 74:10 O God, how long shall the adversary reproach? shall the enemy blaspheme thy name for ever?
Psalm 94:3 Lord, how long shall the wicked, how long shall the wicked triumph?
“Men will surely set up their laws to counterwork the laws of God. They will seek to compel the consciences of others, and in their zeal to enforce these laws they will oppress their fellow men.
“The warfare against God’s law, which was begun in heaven, will be continued until the end of time. Every man will be tested. Obedience or disobedience is the question to be decided by the whole world. All will be called to choose between the law of God and the laws of men. Here the dividing line will be drawn. There will be but two classes. Every character will be fully developed; and all will show whether they have chosen the side of loyalty or that of rebellion.” –The Desire of Ages, p. 763.
For review and meditation
• When was Satan’s head bruised?
• When did the kingdom of grace begin, and what privilege do its citizens have?
• What are some of Satan’s current deceptions?