Saturday, April 04, 2009

Satan's Triumph

Satan wanted Jesus dead. Satan entered the heart of Judas Iscariot to betray Jesus. Satan wanted to destroy the Messiah.

And yet, Satan also wanted to turn Jesus from the cross. Remember what Peter said about "May it never be" that Jesus suffer and die? And Jesus said, "Get behind Me, Satan."

Movies about Christ's passion can't agree with each other. Was Satan happy over the crucifixion, or did he try to prevent it? Did he egg on Jesus' persecutors, or did he shudder at what was happening?

I have even heard pastors disagree about this. Some do not like the hymns that say, "The foe in triumph shouted when Christ lay in the tomb" and "The foe was triumphant when on Calvary the Lord of creation was nailed to the tree." But other pastors see value in those lines.

What if...
Satan did want the destruction of the Son of God? Maybe he just couldn't contain his glee over the thought of killing God. Maybe he knew his theology, but still yearned to take out the Messiah.

Is that so different from us? The old Adam in us wants the very thing that will harm us. Our sinful nature yearns to hang onto that which will destroy us.

Maybe that is what was going on with Satan. He wanted the very thing that would turn out to be his undoing -- the death of God.

Somehow, the blindness of unbelief made Satan (and makes us!) unable to see. We expect that succumbing to temptations and lust and covetousness will satisfy. But they don't. They bring harm. Satan lusted for God's place. When he saw what he thought he'd accomplished (but which was actually Jesus' laying down His own life, and not having Satan take it from Him), it turned out to be to his destruction.

It's like that line in The Royal Banners Forward Go:
"Spoil the spoiler of his prey."

Maybe the Moral Of The Story here is that
"getting what we want"
never turns out to be
what we want.

If anyone desires to come after Me,
let him deny himself
and take up his cross daily
and follow Me.

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