“To the angel of the church in Sardis write: These are the words of him who holds the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead, Revelation 3:1.
Regardless of the subject or topic, there will always be extremes on either side of the issue. For example, denominations vary on the theological role the Devil, Lucifer and Satan play on this life. Charismatic churches encourage prayer which serves as a hedge of protection against demonic activity. Meanwhile, moderate mainline churches do not emphasize spiritual warfare, speaking of Satan in symbolic terms and theory.
Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns,” Matthew 16:23.
During the first century, Jesus wasn’t afraid to address controversial topics. While addressing his disciples in private, Jesus exposes mindsets of the Devil. Similar to the speel dished out to Eve that convinced her to eat forbidden fruit, Satan attempts to take human minds off of God’s concerns. This is done through the temptation of instant gratification. Apparently, Peter fell prey to this trap sent from Satan’s lair to his mind by a demon.
I will make those who are of the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars—I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you, Revelation 3:9.
In the book of Revelation, John writes sevens letters to churches chosen by the Holy Spirit. John does not sugar coat the spiritual condition of these congregations. One is described as being dead, another lukewarm and one with segments of Satan sitting inside the pews. If every city has a safe and dangerous section of town, why is it so hard to imagine that the same concept exists in the spiritual realm. As the moral fabric of America continues to crumble, perhaps there are lairs of Satan entrapping souls through an addiction to sin. Unless these dominions of darkness are uncovered with fasting and prayer, demonic powers will continue to reign. May the Holy Spirit open our eyes and inspire more people to put on the armor of God daily, Ephesians 6:10-20.
by Jay Mankus