Angelic Conflict part 236: The victory of the Christ – Pro 8:13; 1Pe 5:6-11; Psa 45:7; 11:5; 97:10; Rom 6:1-2; Psa 2; Luk 13:1-5.
length: 57:22 - taught on Jan, 15 2014
Also, knowing the power of God through Christ and the victory already won brings us tremendous peace and the reality of evil makes us very alert.
Under the liberal view a believer doesn’t take evil as seriously as he should and therefore, like one who thinks he is not under threat of his enemy or underestimates his enemy and is quickly defeated, the liberal, usually legalistic believer who is apathetic towards detailed doctrine is much more easily deceived and compromised in his conscience.
The reality of evil makes the positive believer very alert and he is not easily duped or deceived.
1PE 5:6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time,
1PE 5:7 casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you.
1PE 5:8 Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
1PE 5:9 But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.
1PE 5:10 And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.
God doesn't eradicate evil but gives the believer the option to overcome it with good. The evil doesn't work in you, but the good does to produce certain supernatural benefits.
Therefore, evil is not needed by God or the believer, but that in the midst of evil, if the believer clings to divine good, then the fulfillment, establishing, strength, and steadfastness grows.
God doesn't need sin or evil but He overcomes it in the life of the positive believer.
Perfect - mend nets (there might have been damage)
Confirm - to set or to establish
Strengthen - strengthen
Establish - set a firm foundation.
1PE 5:11 To Him be dominion forever and ever. Amen.
There is great evil in this world. Satan would love for us to doubt it or to think he's not that bad or that he doesn't work for destruction at all.
The people refused to blame themselves for the calamity:
"All the sinners of My people will die by the sword,
Those who say, 'The calamity will not overtake or confront us.'
All God has to do is lift the wall of fire, which is His restraint of the evil in Israel's neighbor, Assyria.
God either allows or restrains evil. He is never the cause of it.
If we deny the existence of the very real enemy then we are already defeated.
Despite the enormous amount of intellectual energy poured into this problem by the church's most brilliant minds, as well as by people outside the church, the problem of evil, as it has been formulated within the Western classical-philosophical tradition, has not been solved. According to many thinkers, this is because this problem, as they formulate it, is simply logically unsolvable.
Augustine writes: "Evil does not exist at all and not only for you [God], but for your created universe, because there is nothing outside it which could break in and destroy the order which you have imposed upon it. But in parts of the universe, there are certain elements which are thought evil because of a conflict of interest." [Augustine ~ 400 AD]
He is saying that what seems to be evil is not at all, but just a conflict of interest. This is tame to say the least and pictures evil as flowing from the loving hand of God.
This makes evil abstract and by such has some appeal to those who do not want to admit the reality of a very real war, even though our God is omnipotent and Sovereign. This is playing the fiddle while Rome burns.
More Augustine: God would never have created any ... whose wickedness He foreknew, unless He had equally known to what uses in behalf of the good He would turn him, thus embellishing the course of the ages, as it were an exquisite poem set off with antitheses. For what are called antitheses are among the most elegant of the ornaments of speech. As, then, these oppositions of contraries lend beauty to the language, so the beauty of the course of this world is achieved by the opposition of contraries, arranged, as it were, by an eloquence not of words, but of things. [Augustine]
He is stating that the good cannot be seen without the evil and that the evil enhances the good and that beauty needs an antithesis in order to be seen as beautiful. This is a refined dualism. For, while there is light and darkness motif in the Bible, God did not need evil to reveal Himself. Did not Adam and the woman see the Lord in the garden? So child abuse makes God more beautiful and so is necessary? Does every cloud have a silver lining? Ask the people in the LOF.
Hitler and many Nazis believed that the extermination of the Jews was "good" only in the sense that it was a necessary step toward "the greatest good." Was the means good? Were the ends good? If any of this or any other evil is secretly good in the mind of God then could God hate anything? Would God hate sin and evil with the tenacity that the scriptures say He does?
"The fear of the Lord is to hate evil;
Pride and arrogance and the evil way,
And the perverted mouth, I hate.
PSA 5:5 The boastful shall not stand before Thine eyes;
Thou dost hate all who do iniquity.
PSA 5:6 Thou dost destroy those who speak falsehood;
The Lord abhors the man of bloodshed and deceit.
PSA 11:5 The Lord tests the righteous and the wicked,
And the one who loves violence His soul hates.
PSA 45:7 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated wickedness;
Therefore God, Thy God, has anointed Thee
With the oil of joy above Thy fellows.
As for the believer's attitude towards evil - he is to hate it as God does, but not the evil person to whom he is to have agape love.
PSA 97:10 Hate evil, you who love the Lord,
Who preserves the souls of His godly ones;
He delivers them from the hand of the wicked.
Hate evil, love good,
And establish justice in the gate!
Perhaps the Lord God of hosts
May be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.
Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.
Creatures have been given the ability to act against God's will. The scriptures require the understanding that it is possible for some beings (humans and angels at least) genuinely to resist, and even to thwart, whatever blueprint God might wish their lives to follow.
One must accept that for human history, though omnipotent, God does not monopolize power, but allows creatures the freedom to rebel with just consequences.
In this entire spectrum of free will of the creature and Sovereign will of the Creator we go from hyper-Calvinism to God being absent.
The free will of the creature and the Sovereign will of the Creator co-exist and sin and evil are the self-determination of the creature under the permissive will of God.
This puts the responsibility for sin and evil squarely in the hands of the creature, but it was God alone who could provide the solution. Man could have nothing to do with the solution. Christ alone had to accomplish it and He did in the greatest display of sacrificial love imaginable.
God does not use evil to accomplish a greater good, for how could God's good be any more good and why would He need sin and evil to do so if He could increase good?
It may seem that I'm belaboring this point, but this notion has permeated the theology of recent centuries making God the provider of sin and evil, when He is wholly independent from it.
If God wasn't completely independent from sin then why would He have to completely forsake His Son when He was being judged for sin?
My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me? "
ROM 6:1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace might increase?
ROM 6:2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
Why would we be called to resist what God Himself ordains? Why would God ordain what He says in the scriptures He positively hates?
Rather, God's good has shown its power in the midst of gross evil and tenacious opposition.