Read Matthew 28:1-20
As we began this study two weeks ago, God described an animosity that has impacted mankind since that fateful day in the garden when Adam and Eve ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. That animosity was between mankind and Satan and his demons. Satan desires to steal, kill, and destroy.
But we also discovered a demonic plot and a divine plan. The demonic plot was to annihilate the Son of God, Mary’s first-born. The divine plan was to bring about the redemption of mankind through the Son of God. Ironically, the plot and the plan intersected at the cross. If Satan smiled as Jesus bowed His head and gave up His spirit, God’s smile must have been broader yet. Isaiah reminds us of the substitutionary merits of Christ’s suffering:
“But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” (Is. 53:5)
The demonic plot was unsuccessful. The divine plan was victorious. The cross was a mere flesh wound for Jesus but a fatal wound for Satan.
Though defeated and awaiting final judgment, Satan is still fighting. With the resurrection as one of the clearest evidence of his impotence, attempts to deceive people into believing lies began as early as that first Easter Sunday. As the women joyfully fled from the tomb to share the miracle with the disciples, guards went into the city to explain the impossible. The final results included two conflicting messages that were to be spread. The one: “God is dead! His body was stolen!” The other: “Jesus lives! Believe it and live!”
If you are a Christ follower, don’t be surprised by the opposition you may face today as you seek to spread the news of the gospel. Satan is going down swinging! Rather than succumbing to the opposition, boldly share that Christ lives and transforms with the strength that the Spirit of God provides. We are more than conquerors!