The work of Satan is distinctive toward God’s elect. It is more personal. It is quite the opposite of his work on those that are not the elect. There is no difficulty for him to work upon the unelected or unbelievers as they are solely under his control and with his choice weapon, sin. All people born of man and woman become sinners, because of the working power of sin in them. This power of sin in unbelievers is sufficient for Satan to accomplish his desire toward them. They do not require his distinctive work toward them. Unless one is called by God by His power to overpower sin, he or she is not the elect of God. For this reason, the work of Satan is invariably distinctive toward God’s elect. This is his only probability to regain them back to himself or to destroy them, though he never fully understands the power of God working in them. Because he cannot fully understand God’s power, he never undervalues it and those who are with it overpower him. One thing Satan realizes of God’s elect is that they are no longer of this world or of his power. He knew what they were at the time when they were of this world. They were performing the evil that is in it and constantly appeased him. It was in those days that they relished his power to demise God’s call while being in the bondage of sin that leads to death.
However, when God’s call appeased them, they became His elect. They sought release from bondage and tumult. The manner in which this takes place casts an insight on Satan’s inability to fully comprehend God’s power. Each man or woman when appeased by God’s call is filled with a promise that Satan has never before offered them. How powerful is God’s call! Abraham was able to believe His call and so too His sons that are as many as the stars of the sky. This irks the mind of Satan. He does not want to lose another to God’s glorification. It is for this reason he has been working day and night in men that they should avoid God’s call. And, if some have been appeased by God’s call, it is beyond him to keep them in his power. Hence, he works distinctively toward them. “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him” (Zech. 3:1).
Unbelievers or the unelected sin consciously and reflexively, because of the working power of sin in them. On the contrary, believers or the elect of God do not desire to sin. They are God’s priests and a holy nation. This is the main reason for Satan to accuse God’s elect hoping that they may some how be found sinners and be separated from God. God’s elect always stand or work under the care of His angels, who are ministering spirits, and such an achievement shows they are poor in spirit. It is only at this juncture that Satan can accuse God’s elect and he seizes the opportunity. God’s elect are constantly accused by Satan for the works they perform. What Zechariah saw in a vision is true of the entire God’s elect. The vision he saw is a depiction of what commonly happens to them. They are served by God’s angels because of their keeping of God’s commandments, laws and works. While God’s angels minister to the elect, Satan empowers his elect to accuse the righteousness of God’s elect. Since he is the father of lies, his accusations and the accusations of his elect are always based on distortion. Nevertheless, it is the fight that God’s elect constantly fight. Their fight is against the spiritual forces of wickedness that manifest in the men of flesh. If the present day churches have demonstrated this, they are indeed God’s elect. God also allows Satan to accuse His people that their righteousness is revealed in His power. He knows the nature of his accusations. He knows His power in His people will overcome them. Hence, God through Paul says, “Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?” (1 Cor. 1:20).
The wisdom of the world is the power of sin. With this power Satan creates wise men, scribes and debaters for every time period. These are the citizens of the perishing world. Through these Satan makes his presence known by making accusations against God’s elect. They do not accept the power of God and the work of His Son. They have been defeated even before they knew their end. They did not understand the work of God’s elect. They have considered the work of God foolish. And, whenever they speak, they speak according to the wisdom of the world. They are foolish for two reasons. First, they are instilled with the power of sin. Second, they do not fully understand the power of God working in His sons. They could not realize that what they regarded as foolishness has indeed become the source of life. What Paul has revealed serves a great inspiration to those ministering for God. It is vain for men of God to seek words to define their foolishness. For this reason, Christ had to remain silent leaving an example to those that follow. “And he questioned Him at some length; but He answered him nothing” (Luke 23:9).
All Herod desired to see was a sign, but not the wisdom of God present in the One performing signs and wonders for the salvation of the world. He could not even consider the wisdom of God as he was filled with the power of sin. With it he questioned Jesus at length. Therefore, Jesus did not answer him and his wisdom was rendered foolish. Jesus deliberately did not answer in order that the accusations and reasoning of Satan would not take merit. In doing so, Christ did suffer and His suffering was due to the foolishness of the one accusing Him. Yet, He did not sin. For the power of God in Christ enabled Him to overpower the power of sin in Herod. There is absolute and great life in the power of God. “Each of them will sit under his vine And under his fig tree, With no one to make them afraid, For the mouth of the LORD of hosts has spoken” (Micah 4:4). O, the confidence the power of God avails to His elect! It is indispensable for our victory over sin and death.
However, many preachers, workers of the gospel and churches have failed to recognize this power. Much worse, they lack the knowledge of its working nature. On these, Satan does not have to perform his distinctive work. Their lack of knowledge regarding God’s power is sufficient for his desire to be fulfilled toward them. These are the ones that constantly make justifications for sinning in the flesh. They demise God’s call. What is mystifying is that they know God has power and that He is awfully powerful, yet, they do not seek the transformation that makes them like the poor in spirit. Therefore, they are unable to recognize or receive the power of God that gives victory over sin and death. They have no proper refuge and are often in fear, which led to the protectionism that made them adamant regarding the power of God. This further enthralled them to preach the gospel according to their terms and in the wisdom that God long before has made foolish. Will they be acquitted? “On the lips of the discerning, wisdom is found, But a rod is for the back of him who lacks understanding” (Prov. 10:13).
You who have not yet known the power of God that performed its work in Christ and have not known its working nature make effort to possess the lips that discern. The power of God that laid the foundations of the world, created the heaven and all it contains, wondrously created life, has been performing signs and wonders from the inception of life on earth to facilitate man has also demonstrated its power over sin in a simplest way when Jesus did not answer Herod, but remained quiet. Now, where are the wise men, the scribes and the debaters of the churches that claim to be of Christ? Was not their wisdom made foolish when they insisted to have known the power of God, the manner it works in all who believe, and yet, did not fully comprehend its nature? Is not the power of God the gospel, even His word that manifested in the flesh for the salvation of all who believe? And, if you have believed in the power of God, how did you regard it? If Satan did not accuse you, you do not have the power of God that overpowers sin; you do not have the power of God that created the earth and the heavens and all in it working in you. The power of this world and of sin still exists in you. But, if he is accusing you, your suffering is made known wherein you do not desire to sin or offer justifications to your sins. Besides, you overpower the accusations of Satan just as Christ.
The elect of God are with lips that discern. They distinguish between righteousness and sin, between the wisdom that is made foolish and the wisdom of God. The power of God constantly works in them. They do not tolerate any form of injustice and evil. Their justification comes from God. This was the response of a man of God when God’s children were suffered by their own brothers. “Then I was very angry when I had heard their outcry and these words” (Neh. 5:6). He first consulted with himself and obtained the wisdom present in the power of God. Then, he went to the nobles, contended with them and overpowered their sin. He was able to discern rightly only because he possessed the power of God that overpowered the power of sin. He too like others fought against the spiritual forces of wickedness that manifested in the men of flesh. This is the lesson for the present day churches: Consult with yourselves for obtaining the power of God; contend with those that demise God’s call and are adamant regarding the power of God. For these are the days in which the churches are suffered at the hands of their seeming brethren. Begin your life anew with God. Depend wholly on the power of God and it will teach you when and how to demonstrate its power for the glory of God. You will suffer, but for the right reasons, and you shall prevail. “Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right” (Prov. 20:11). Will you not be known?