Principalities and Powers/Mystery Doctrines

Principalities and Powers/Mystery Doctrines
We need to understand from Scripture that Satan has organized one third of the angels, (perhaps billions) who chose to follow him instead of God, into various ranks.
Satan, as General (leader) of the army of demons, has organized his demon army by rank and file. They constantly interfere in the lives of believers (but Satan does not — he is not all-present, and can only be in one place at a time; he has no time for you, personally). Their orders are to thwart the plan of God and keep believers from being lights in a darkened world.
Remember Satan is the enemy of Christ our Savior. Therefore, Satan is our enemy as well. As believers we fight blindly (this is where the term “blind faith” probably originated) — we cannot see demons, but they can see us: advantage — demons. But we have the Holy Spirit-advantage, believers. Believers face a superior enemy, crafty in strategy and shrouded in mystery.
As believers in the Church Age, we face three determined enemies. Our battle is against our own sin nature — the flesh,  the cosmic system — the world, and Satan — which includes his army of fallen angels, called demons. But the believer has the Holy Spirit. Therefore, the filling of the Holy Spirit is imperative to victory in the Christian life (Ephesians 6:10-12).
We believers also have our own guardian angels which watch over us, guard us, protect us, and fight against these powers of darkness. Darkness is real! God gave us daily reminders of light and darkness. When we sleep, totally off guard, totally helpless in slumber, God has angels watching and guarding. Now, this doesn’t mean that you leave the doors unlocked and invite misery to join you in the bedroom (don’t be foolish, lock your doors from human intruders, not demon intruders).  Satan is real.  Demons (fallen angels) are real. We will look at Satan’s strategies in an upcoming study.

We now look to Scripture and become witness to a select spiritual conflict. God, for our benefit, gives us rare opportunities to view unseen things. For example in Luke 17, we are taken down into the underworld to a place called Hades or Torments. In Hades the Rich man is tormented and Lazarus is in bliss — a place called Paradise.
We have the good guys and the bad guys in the movies and in life, and so does the spiritual realm. Good and evil has been pitted in spiritual warfare since the fall of Satan, and will be until Jesus Christ throws Satan and his followers into the Lake of Fire at the end of the millennium (the thousand-year reign of Christ after the rapture and the tribulation (seven years between the rapture of the church and Christ’s return).
God, through Jesus Christ, controls history by controlling spiritual warfare and by the guiding control of His followers (angels and you and Me — believers). through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. This is why we are here. We are left here on earth after salvation to be servants, ministering to those in our community, ambassadors for Christ, and workers for our master — our glorious general and leader, Jesus Christ.

In Daniel Chapter Ten, a spiritual battle occurs between evil demons and good angels …
Let’s go back in time to the time of Daniel the prophet and join Daniel by the bank of the Tigris river. Please turn in your Bible to Daniel chapter ten.
In verse 2, Daniel had been in mourning for three weeks over a vision, and praying for help from God. No answer had yet come, but, God heard Daniel’s plea the same day that he first prayed.
“On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, while I was  by the bank  of the great river Tigris, I lifted my eyes and looked, and behold, there was a certain man dressed in linen, whose waist was girded with a belt of pure gold of Uphaz. His body also was like beryl, his face had the appearance of lightning, his eyes were like flaming torches, his arms and feet like the gleam of polished bronze, and the sound of his words like the sound of a multitude” (Daniel 10:4-6).
Continue reading from verse six to verse twelve.
Then, in verses 12 and 13 we are told of a spiritual battle — hand to hand combat, between God’s elect angel and Satan’s chief demon. It took 21 days for the angel to arrive with God’s answer for Daniel. It also took an even more powerful angel to overcome the demon who delayed the response.
This is only one example of spiritual warfare that we are not aware of … praise the Lord. But, when we come back to the earth with our Lord after the Rapture at His Second coming, we will not only see the spiritual battles actually taking place, we will be participants as well.
In Daniel, divine and angelic appearances are described in 3:25; 4:13, 17, 23; 6:22; 7:16; 8:13, 14, 16-26; 9:21; 10:4-12, 16, 18, 20; 12:1, 5-6. In verse 13 the Prince of Persia is a powerful demon angel ruling over Persia.
Apparently, nations have demon rulers who influence government affairs.
In the book of Second Kings, one of the most interesting stories in the Old Testament surrounds Ben Hadad, king of Syria and Elisha. You may want to read this story, but the point of this reference is to establish  a point of doctrine.
II Kings chapter six, verse 16, is of great importance to our study.
“Fear not,” said Elisha, “for “they” that be with “us” are more than “they” that be with them.” These four words which line up all the forces involved in this struggle — earthly forces and supernatural.
Elisha knew that the forces of God were greater than the forces of Satan. Verse 17 is an awesome view for all of us, so be sure to read what the young servant saw when God opened his eyes “the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.”
Moses, Elijah, Elisha and many other mighty men of God in the Old and New Testament trusted God, and God delivered them in mighty ways from the forces of evil.
Today we live in the ‘Church Age,’ which is the intensified stage of the Angelic Conflict — Invisible Warfare. The Church Age consists of both believing Jews and Gentiles which make up “The Church,” the “Body of Christ.” Each believer automatically becomes a member of the Body of Christ at the point of salvation. This is the “Baptism of the Holy Spirit,” whereby at the point of salvation the believer is in “Union” with Christ as a new member of His Body. The believer is instantly sealed by the Holy Spirit at salvation (1 Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 4:4-6).
Angels are above man in rank and power, for now. Since the ascension of Christ to the Right Hand of the Father (the highest place of honor and authority), the angelic creation has a new leader — Christ (the humanity of Christ) who is seated on the right of the Father (Acts 7:56; Colossians 2:10,15; 3:1; Ephesians 1:20, 21;  5:24; Hebrews 2:9; 10:12; 1 Peter 3:22).

Please turn to Ephesians 3:10, 11.
Angels are learning, throughout the Church Age, the mysteries of the manifold wisdom of God, which were previously unknown, but are revealed to angels (both fallen and elect), and to mankind: “manifold wisdom of God might now be made known through the Church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places. This was in accordance with the eternal purpose (Divine Decrees) which He (God) carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Ephesians 3:10-11). See also: Romans 8:38; Ephesians 2:7; 6:12; Titus 3:1.
Rulers of nations, and religious leaders (like the ones who crucified Christ), have had opportunity to learn Scripture and understand the mysteries of God, especially “while we were yet sinners Christ died for our sins” (Romans 5:8). “Yet we do speak wisdom among those who are mature, a wisdom however, not of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are passing away; but we speak God’s wisdom in a mystery, hidden wisdom which God predestined before the ages to our glory; the wisdom which none of the rulers of this age has understood; for if they had understood it they would not have crucified the Lord of Glory” (1 Corinthians 2:6-8). Please read the remaining verses 9-14.

The word “mystery” involves the Holy Spirit who revealed mysteries at the appointed time in the New Testament to apostles. In Ephesians 3:8 Paul calls these mysteries the “unsearchable riches of Christ” which “from the beginning of the world hath been hidden in God who created all things by Jesus Christ.
The mystery spoken of in Ephesians 3:10,11 refers to the “Times of the Gentiles” and actually refers to all the events surrounding Christ (Messiah) from the incarnation through the rapture. A list of these events follows. This list is not in chronological order.
  • The Incarnation: Matthew 1:21; Luke 2:10, 31-32.
  • The Exalted Messiah/Savior: Colossians 1:15-23.  
  • The Crucifixion: John 19:28-29.
  • The Mystery of the Gospel: Ephesians 6:19.
  • The Jews and Gentiles as One Body: Ephesians 3:1-12.
  • Christ and the Church: Ephesians 5:32.  
  • The Literal Indwelling of Christ In Us and In His Church: Colossians 1:27.
  • Christ Seated on the Throne of Eternity: Mark 16:19; Acts 2:33; 7:55, 56; Romans 8:34; Colossians 3:1;Hebrews 10:12; 1 Peter 3:22.
Happy Studying in Fields of Grace!

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