101 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ABOUT HEALTH AND WEALTH
March 2015 – Week 9
THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL
We have been dealing with some very serious issues and difficult questions about life. It is good to go slow and discuss these thoughts because it hopefully helps us understand the difference between God’s truth and deceptions from the enemy. When we have questions, there is only one genuine truth and all the other millions of opinions wherever they may come from are just versions of the truth. I am not saying we can know ALL truth because only God is all truth but I believe we can know as much as the Lord feels we can contain. As we have said before, it is not about how much knowledge we can collect, but how much we can live. And when it comes to truth, a little goes a long way toward developing us into God’s image.
17. If Satan is really serious about trying to kill us and our family, burn our house, and give us cancer every chance he can, then why doesn’t he just destroy the whole world with a plague or a nuclear war? To begin with, Satan does not have this level of power and he certainly does not share power or is equal in power with God. I am sure he would love to destroy the world because that is his nature but in all reality he is on a very short leash. We only have a tiny amount of information about who he is and what he can do, so we are limited in our understanding of the big picture of good and evil. The book of Job is one of the most interesting books yet also one of the most confusing works of literature. We cannot cut out this piece of information just because it does not line-up with our theological world-view. There are so many difficult questions associated with our topic that we need to start with the basics and only lay the bricks that we know are true and hold off on the ones we are not sure about. 1. We know the devil is a strong negative and deceptive influence. He had a sinful attitude in heaven and persuaded many angels to follow his way of thinking. 2. He twisted God’s truth in the Garden and lied to Eve in order to influence the woman and the man to sin against God. 3. He was cursed but still has the opportunity to influence the human race by speaking his messages into the mind. Once he can persuade someone to embrace his views then he can use their voice to relay his message. In this light His power to influence is just as deadly and effective as it always has been. 4. Notice that he had to ask God about Job and was only allowed to do what was already a part of God’s blueprint. In this way of thinking we can conclude that God uses the devil to bring glory to Himself. I realize we do not like this arrangement and do not feel this is fair but as we have said before, nothing happens without God’s awareness. Spiritual warfare may not be as cut and dried as we thought. In Gods eyes it is not necessarily what happens to people but rather how they handle it. Many times the battle may not be with demons that hide behind every bush but rather on the battlefield of the mind with how we think and react. If we are truly WALKING with God in the Spirit, our suffering in the flesh hopefully is being used to teach us valuable lessons that is making us spiritually stronger. Yes, I believe that God wants us to prosper and be in good health but if for some reason this does not happen, the most important thing is to be obedient to Christ.
18. Why is there a devil at all? This is not a silly question. He is a created being that had the free-will to choose good or bad. Lucifer started out good but unfortunately he chose to be bad and used his influence to persuade many to follow him. I do not believe God made Lucifer to become Satan but rather fell from heaven all on his own. He betrayed God by planning a takeover but was quickly dismissed and removed from his position. He has never ceased from his rebellious attitude and has been given permission to continue his agenda in trying to convince the world against God. The devil is not a fable or a fictional character but is a real being and is the temporary leader of the kingdom of darkness. Why the Lord did not destroy him I do not know but I presume it is because he uses him to accomplish His will. One of the most simple yet profound promises and words of wisdom can be found in James chapter 4, verse 7, and “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” This simple instruction is crucial for us to be victorious in this life. The submission in this scripture means to surrender our will completely to the Lord and follow His voice. The resisting is completely up to our determination to turn away from being led by our emotions. The devil attacks our feelings and leads us around by the nose until we put a stop to it. Resist means to ignore and developing an awareness to his snare traps will help us turn away from his temptations. When he becomes tired of us not taking the bait, he will begin to back-off and focus on someone weaker and more vulnerable. When we were created we also had the choice to be good or evil and likewise we also face the consequences of our decisions. We should study to become wise as to who we are in Christ in order to learn the reality of spiritual authority. God has a wonderful reason for creating the devil because nothing is an accident and everything God does is perfect.
God created Adam and Eve to be free beings, to make decisions, and choose between good and evil. In order for Adam and Eve to truly be free, they had to have a choice. I do not think the power of good or bad was in the fruit itself but it was the act of disobedience that opened Adam and Eve’s eyes. Their sin of disobeying God brought sin and corruption into the world and into their lives. Eating the fruit, as an act of disobedience against God, was what gave Adam and Eve knowledge of evil. God did not want Adam and Eve to sin because He knew ahead of time what the results of sin would be. God knew that Adam and Eve would fall and would thereby bring wickedness, suffering, and death into the world. Why, then, did God allow Satan to tempt Adam and Eve? God allowed Satan to tempt Adam and Eve to force them to be decision makers and not robots. Their bad decision resulted in every person being born with a sin nature and tendency to sin. Adam and Eve’s choice is what ultimately required Jesus to die on the cross and shed His blood on our behalf so that through faith in Christ, we can be free from sin’s consequences, and ultimately free from sin itself. Learning what is wrong makes us appreciate what is right.