“Through the cross, Christ destroyed death”
The death of a dream, of a relationship, or of a business can have a devastating and long term affect; however, it need not be so. God’s view of death is very different from ours. Because of our fallen nature, we see death as the end of something, but God sees it as the beginning. Death is the work of the enemy, and if for no other reason than that, the believer can rest assured that God always has a plan to bring life through death and to destroy the works of the devil through what appears to be absolute defeat, as the resurrection of Jesus Christ clearly demonstrates. ~ “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil” (Hebrews 2.14). The cross teaches us that we should not fear death, but rather celebrate it because it is God’s invitation to a completely new a greater victory.
Don’t Resist God
One of the great paradoxes of the spiritual life is failing to understand the spiritual laws of God, by which God leads His people into victory over the enemy and answers their prayers. This was the story of the ancient Israelites, who didn’t take the time to learn ‘Gods ways’ of dealing with His people and getting things done. ~ “Therefore I was angry with that generation, And said, ‘They always go astray in their heart, And they have not known My ways.’ So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest’” (Hebrews 3:10,11). Like most misunderstandings, there are few things more frustrating for Father and son, than to pray for something and then to mistake the working of God for the working of the enemy. When this happens, the individual ends up resisting God as He works to answer his prayers and give him the things he desires to receive. This is what happened to Peter the disciple. Jesus had just finished announcing to His disciples that he would suffer and die on the cross.
The twelve disciples did not yet understand the plan of God, which was to destroy Satan through death. ~ “But when He had turned around and looked at His disciples, He rebuked Peter, saying, “Get behind Me, Satan! For you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men” (Mark 8:33). On the cross, God took Satan’s greatest armament away from him and destroyed the prince of darkness with his own weapon. Now, God wants us to follow in the footsteps of the teacher from Galilee by doing the same thing. ~ “For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh” (2Corinthians 4.11). God will always bring His people face to face with death in order to give them the victory because the cross and death are the power of God into salvation. ~ “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God” (1Corinthians 1.18).
Life Through Death
Just as the children of Israel, God led them face to face with death, when they were trapped between the onslaught of Pharaoh’s marching army on one side and the Red Sea on the other. As stated in the forgoing scripture, God delivered them into death in order to inflame their faith, so the power of God could be released through them granting them a complete and decisive victory over their enemies. Jesus repeatedly did the same thing with His disciples, using the beating of the waves of the sea and the howling of the storm to stimulate their faith. ~ “And they came to Him and awoke Him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!” Then He arose and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water. And they ceased, and there was a calm. But He said to them, “Where is your faith?” And they were afraid, and marveled, saying to one another, “Who can this be? For He commands even the winds and water, and they obey Him!” (Luke 8.24,25). The next time you find yourself delivered unto death and it seems that all hope for your dreams has been lost and buried, remember God who always delivers us unto death, so that the power of faith can go to work and give life through death to your dreams raising them from the ashes into an entirely new and better state of being.
For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So then death is working in us, but life in you.
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© L. Jonathan Blais 2023 All rights reserved. Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission.