Welcome to the first post of the series challenging topics! We are diving right in with a deep and baffling question, voted by you wonderful bloggers!. Why does the devil obey God? A question that many may not consider but one that is certainly worth answering!
God almighty is the sovereign ruler of the universe. The definition of sovereign is: A supreme ruler… you cannot get more supreme than God. With that in mind, we know that all though evil exists, it is only because God allows it.
WHY DOES THE DEVIL STILL OBEY GOD?
Have you ever asked yourself that question? This was the question that popped into my mind when I read the book of JOB, check out the below…
The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.” Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
Did you get that?! Satan was given a frame work to do his evil work, he could not lay a finger on Job (physically) at this point, but only that which he owned. Satan obeyed! Later we read…
“Skin for skin!” Satan replied. “A man will give all he has for his own life. But now stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face.” The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life.”
Job 2:4-6. Again, Satan leaves the presence of God to perform his evil work, and again he obeyed God’s boundaries!
Why did God consider such an evil onslaught for his servant? Why did Satan obey? First, God allowed it because He could see the final result of Jobs faith, something that we cannot see nor the devil. Secondly, the devil obeyed because he thought that within those boundaries he could still destroy Jobs faith. God and the devil both had goals during this great time of testing. God’s agenda was to prove the genuiness of Jobs faith. The Devils agenda was to prove that “Job feared God for nothing“.
To understand why the devil still obeys God, we need to get to the root issue of how he fell from his place in heaven. The root issue is one word… PRIDE.
Here is what the devil said…
You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.”
The devil wants to make himself like the most high! He cannot imagine anything or anyone greater so his aim is to be like him and be God.
Pride is why the devil thought he could defeat God on the cross; pride is why the devil thought he could destroy Jobs faith, pride is why he thought he can destroy Israel and pride is why the devil thinks he can destroy the church. Pride is the self destructive delusional sin that makes one go to any lengths to prove whatever point they are trying to make… This is why the devil continously thinks he can outwit God but in the end always fails.
The devil is a defeated enemy, but nevertheless, he is still a powerful being that we need to be on guard against, especially as the return of Jesus is nigh. If we do not keep watch then the tempter may come and lead us away from God.
Within all the evil the devil is permitted to do, he must stay within God’s boundaries concerning the people of God. This is why God’s people are called to be holy and blameless, to fear God and shun evil (read Proverbs 14:16-26). If we do not then we give the devil legal access into our lives. This is also why demons shriek at the name of Jesus and must obey him, as seen many times in the scriptures (Mark 1:34, Luke 4:41, Mark 5:8, Mark 9:25, Matthew 8:31, ). They must submit to the authority of the name of Jesus. When we resist the devil he will flee from us (James 4:7). God has given us the weapons to fight the devil successfully, when we attack or defend the way God teaches us, then the enemy must obey.
God’s restraining hand is operating on this earth, during this time of restraint the Devils power is limited. Yet when the one who restrains is removed (2 Thessalonians 2:7) the antichrist has the authority to enter the world stage and even overcome the saints for a time period! (Revelation 13:7). Yet the enemy cannot do this while the restrainer is present. Who is restraining you may ask? Some say the Holy Spirit operating through the church, some say Satan himself (because he knows when the antichrist rules his time is very short) others say it is the right hand of God or something/someone else such as Michael the arc angel. What or who the restrainer is does not matter, what matters is at some point that restraint is removed. This is why the tribulation is the worst time in human history!
To spare this post from becoming a book the conclusion of why the devil obeys God is rooted in the Devils pride. Satan relentlessly pursues the destruction of a human soul. Some people fall and get back up, others fall and do not rise… Whatever the final outcome only the omniscient God knows. Yet this does not prevent the devil from trying! Some “sell their souls” to the devil… but they need to know that God can give them back their soul! For the blood of Jesus Christ has paid the price for it!
What would happen if the devil did not stay within those boundaries? Well, when the sons of God (fallen angels) had sexual relations with humans (read ) God put them in chains waiting for the great judgement (Jude 1:6). They went beyond what God permitted, this was a message to the spiritual realm. As the devil is so proud he would not sacrifice his position of ruler of the unseen dark world… the devil is evil but not stupid. God of course knows this so nothing prophesied would be compromised from being fulfilled.
I know this is a very difficult question and that much of what we don’t know is still a great mystery because Gods knowledge is infinite!
Much more could be said, but I hope that this was enough to answer the question!
Any questions or comments please write in the comments! I would love to learn from you and know what you think.
Image credit: Google image…diocese of Orlando, Florida… the devil and Jesus
Next post: Once saved always saved?
Much love and God bless