I’ve heard satan screaming. It’s not an audible sound, it’s a spiritual awareness. I don’t remember the first time I sensed it but in my wondering what this was, the Lord led me to Acts 19. Paul was ministering to the Ephesians. Many signs and wonders were displayed. People came to the Lord and burned their books and renounced their witchcraft. This did not go unnoticed by the enemy. It culminated in the whole population rushing to the town center and screaming for 2 hours “great is artimus, great is diana, goddess of the Ephesians.” They screamed. For two hours. God had poured out His power and glory in Ephesus and the enemy could do nothing more than scream. He raged and screamed and had the whole town in uproar but at the end of it all, the town clerk shut everyone up and sent them home.
He screams even now. It perplexed me for a long time. As I look at our culture, our churches, our schools, it seems he is winning. ISIS and Boko Haram and others are exacting evil on the earth and the startling images are splashed across our tv and computer screens. I struggle along with the rest of the world on how to respond to the horror of the ISIS beheadings, public burnings and Boko Haram terror acts. I am in anguish for the suffering of the victims and their families. I’m angry and want to do something that would stop the madness. At times I’m hopeless that anything will change. I’m speechless at the impotence of world leaders in the face of such evil. I see how the evil seems to be gaining not losing ground and I think, why is he screaming? He seems to have the upper hand right now. It doesn’t make sense from my earthly viewpoint.
A few days ago the Lord brought me to an article by Ravi Zacharias that pointed to the courage of the 21 Coptic Christians in being martyrs for their faith. It shared their last words, “O Lord Jesus”, and how they did not deny Him even though it meant death. How they must have prayed and hoped the horrific end would not come and yet it did. They gave of the highest calling for Jesus, their very lives. Another article about the family of one of the slain shook me to the core. The brother was saying how grateful he was that ISIS left the last words of the slain on the video because it had strengthened their faith. The mom said she would invite the murderers into her house and thank them for ushering her son into the Kingdom of Heaven!
What?! No rage? No hopelessness? No frustration at governments? No. They understand what being a Christian is really all about. And I am exposed as an American Christian who has been indoctrinated in a wrong view.
As I pondered these things, the Lord led me back to my journal from August of last year:
August 12, 2014
satan requires death. God requires life. When Jesus died, satan thought he had achieved the ultimate in death. It was horrific and bloody and that is his delight. As he no doubt reveled in the blood that poured out of Jesus body at the cross what he did not get is that Jesus would take all that blood back and use it as a symbol of LIFE over His people. What a slap in the face! The very thing satan demands and delights in – blood – used against him. It must mock him every time we speak of Jesus’ blood for he cannot use it to fuel his death campaign. No, it is for LIFE, not death! Amen and Hallelujah!!
Even worse, the blood of Christians spilled cries out against him and becomes seed for even greater power of God on this earth.
This is why satan screams. He can’t win and he knows it all too well. As those 21 men were murdered in hate and violence, God used (and is still using) their witness, played over and over on the internet and news sources, to speak the LIFE of Jesus Christ! Their last words spoke His Name, “O Lord Jesus” and over and over His Name is declared on the earth! For every drop of blood spilled in Jesus’ Name, God pours out power and glory on this earth that isn’t seen in the natural but creates radical shifts in the spiritual. And all satan can do is scream.
I can’t say I’m rejoicing at the horrific death of these faithful and courage Christians. It greatly grieves me. I grieved over the death of the Jordanian pilot as well. In the natural this is ugly and we are right to be horrified by it. And I’m praying fervently for our brothers and sisters in harms way. But I believe in the reality of a spiritual realm too. And I believe in a God who doesn’t take lightly the spilling of human blood, especially for evil sake. The Word is full of references to what will happen to those who persecute and kill for evil’s sake. God is just and vengeance is His; I believe that with all my heart!
So, I don’t rejoice in their persecutions but I do rejoice that God is using them for good. I rejoice that He has the upper hand, even when it doesn’t look like it from my viewpoint. I rejoice that His view is much more knowledgeable than mine. I rejoice that He keeps track of everything and will work all things out in the end. I rejoice that even though satan is wreaking havoc on the earth, he can’t win and he knows it. I rejoice because God is pouring out a greater anointing, a greater power, a greater work! He has not forgotten us! In fact, this is the very environment that brings revival. The Egyptian Christians know this and rejoice! The angels know this and rejoice! Rejoice Christian! God is with us – even with a knife at our neck.
So satan rages and screams but at the end of it all, he will be dismissed and sent to his permanent home – hell.
I say, let him scream! Because…