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be purged out"; we must “put off the old man (carnal mind) and his deeds, and put on the new man, etc.” This putting off is absolutely necessary.
Jesus cannot only defeat Satan, but He can destroy the “ works of the devil”-one of which is the alien principle of our nature. “ For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the Devil.” The life, death, and resurrection of Jesus--the God-Man—is an everlasting Atonement and a propitiation for sin. Sin is the Rubicon of our battle; once we solve, in all its fullness, the problem of sin, we rob Satan of his fulcrum power. He came to Jesus and found nothing: no availability, no sin, no yielding, no fellowship. He was tempted, but without sin.
Our victory must be twofold: first, through the merits of the Everlasting Blood Covenant we may be saved from sin unto salvation—reconciliation, forgive
Then by the fuller benefits of the Atonement we may“ enter into the holiest by the Blood.” Only the pure in heart can stand the approaches of Satan by way of our natural appetites. The triumphs of modern surgery are only possible by means of sterilized instruments. Please observe with all the meaning that can be couched in language: the sinful, unregenerated heart is not only in danger of being overcome, but is already in blind bondage to Satan. The power of sin, both actual and original, must broken by the pardoning grace of God through faith in the Atoning Blood; and the heart cleansed and empowered by the Baptism of the Holy Ghost.
The second inevitable concomitant of victory is
copartnership with Jesus, the Captain of our salvation
-“ looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.” Diabolus and his minions cannot stand before this Name. His final overthrow was when Jesus cried out on the Cross : “ It is finished.” Now at the sight of Jesus, the Cross, or the Blood, the phalanx of darkness slinks away. Let us lay hold of eternal life by an unfaltering faith in the Blood that cleanseth, and “ The Name high over all : in earth, in heaven, in hell.” “ And they overcame him through the blood of the Lamb, and the word of their testimony." Amen and Amen.
THE ARREST AND IMPRISONMENT
“ For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time."--Revelation xii. 12.
“ And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, and cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him."- Revelation xx. 1–3.
THE fact of a possible victory through the Name of our great Conqueror does not alone satisfy all the items of the indictment. If such were the only background to the picture, great as it is, the human drama is not only a fierce tragedy, but a miserable farce. Thank God, personal victory is not all; there is a rift in the dark satanic cloud which has hung over the world for so many millenniums. Satan is in great wrath, and his power and influence grow steadily stronger; more and more his iron grip fastens about the throat of the world. The Apostasy of which Christ and His Apostles wrote is becoming a reality.
Satan will score one more gigantic victory; then is our blessed hope of His glorious appearing,” when He shall come and catch away His Bride-the Church, both dead and alive; that part of His following who are united to Him and are earnestly yearning for His coming. This event is called by devout scholars “ The Rapture.” Just where, how, when, or how long, we have only a vague prophetic conjecture. “Where, Lord?" they ask. “And He said unto them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together."
When the Rapture shall have taken place, Satan will have undisputed dominion; then shall the “ Man of Sin" appear, setting himself up as Godto be worshipped. His reign will be the Great Tribulation; all the influences of righteousness will, for the time, be removed—the earth will reek in corruption and bloodshed. It is implied that, so terrible will be this time, divine intervention must necessarily shorten the Tribulation, else no flesh will be left on the earth. The Great Tribulation will be the climax of the Devil's rule on earth. It seems that he will incarnate himself in a Man, giving him supernatural knowledge and power.
However, something spectacular and sensational will soon occur. When the leader of a gang of thugs or desperadoes is arrested, his followers are filled with fear and consternation; then think of the excitement. An Angel officer will break in on the scene-yes, that is exactly what the Book tells us : the High Sheriff of Heaven will suddenly step down from headquarters, and will lay hold-arrest the Old Dragon-Satan-Devil-Serpent (observe all his names are mentioned). Whatever his titles and distinctions of the past have been, they will not save him in that hour. The Apocalyptic Vision is unmistakable.
Some can see in this wonderful language only an
allegory: the good influences are to gradually bind the influences of evil, and to expect such an event as the literal arrest of the Devil is a wild, irrational, unscientific, unreasonable dream. Our Lord said, speaking of the time of the end, that the same social conditions as prevailed in the days of Noah were to be repeated: wicked ones waxing worse and worse; scarcely any living in the fear of God. To expect to see a gradual regeneration of society, politics, commerce, and the Church-until evil will be overruled, chained as it were seems to be a gigantic travesty on language and the teaching of the Bible.
We prefer to stand by the Book rather than human interpretation-fixed up to justify the methods and results of modern religious propaganda. An angel appears—evidently an archangel: one belonging to the rank of which the fallen Prince formerly belonged. This Sheriff of the skies is equipped for his undertaking ; Officers carry handcuffs with which to bind prisoners—the angel has a great chain in his hand; he lays hold-arrests the old skulking, hateful, murderous Devil. This angel-officer has also a key, and it is the key which locks the door of the bottomless pit. This door has been wide open; Satan and his emissaries could go and come at pleasure. Just as an officer arrests a desperado and leads him off to prison-so will the archangel arrest the Devil and lock him up in the pit of darkness and despair. What will be done with his millions of cohorts? We can judge only by inference. We want to stay close to the inspired record; of one thing, however, we are confident: the footstool of