Class Notes: 3/15/2009
Eph 4:27; The mandate not to give a place or opportunity to the devil cont....
We are discussing the mandate of the PPOG that is found in Eph 4:27; where we find a command for defensive action in the spiritual life, in the words " And do not give the devil an opportunity".
The mandate comes from the Greek words "mede didomi" "mede" is translated "do not" and the word translated "give " is "didomi" the second person plural active imperative of "didote" that means to "cause to happen" to "grant or to allow "
The Greek word translated opportunity is "topos", and it means a place or a room or space that can be occupied. In the context it is referring to a place or room in your soul that can be occupied by the devil's lies and propaganda that are the source of deception. Rev 12:9;
So the verse is warning us not to make any room in our soul for the thoughts that are promoted by the devil, or his kosmos system that comprise the kingdom of darkness.
The space that is to be denied the devil and his kosmos are the arrogant mental attitude sins that become motivational evil that eventually leads to functional evil that is the product of the kosmic system.
When one is proud, jealous, vindictive, afraid, bitter, angry, unforgiving, or immersed in self-pity and guilt, one "gives the devil an opportunity".
We saw that just as Bible Doctrine gives the rooms of the soul pleasure and freedom, a lack of doctrine in those rooms leaves space for the devil and produces slavery and bondage.
The demonstration of just what the rooms of the soul contain is provided when the believer is placed under pressure.
Last time we left off where Job was being presented to Satan as a witness for God.
Job 1:8; And the Lord responds to Satan (since you have been roaming about on the earth), "Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil."
With the statement "Have you considered my servant Job?" God has entered Job as a witness for God in the historic appeal trial of Satan and the fallen angels and as a result he becomes Satan's target and Satan will create adversity in Job's life and try to establish a base in his soul in an attempt to turn his testimony against God.
Being called a witness for God in the historic appeal trial of Satan and the fallen angels, is the greatest privilege one could ever have as a believer.
Job 1:9-12; Then Satan answered the Lord, "Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands." (God has prospered Job financially, so now comes Satan's allegation), But put forth Thy hand now and touch all that he has; he will surely curse You to your face." Then the Lord said to Satan, "Behold, all that he has is in your power, only do not put forth your hand on him." So Satan departed from the presence of the Lord.
Satan is making the case that if one's tranquil environment is destroyed then there is no option but to react in mental attitude sins such as anger, bitterness and accusation.
The result of Satan's first assault, that results in Job's first test is described starting in verse 13.
Job 1:13-19; Now on the day when his sons and his daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother's house, that a messenger came to Job and said, "The oxen were plowing and the donkeys feeding beside them, and the Sabeans attacked and took them. They also slew the servants with the edge of the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you."
While he was still speaking, another also came and said, "The fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep and the servants and consumed them, and I alone have escaped to tell you."
While he was still speaking, another also came and said, "The Chaldeans formed three bands and made a raid on the camels and took them and slew the servants with the edge of the sword; and I alone have escaped to tell you."
While he was still speaking, another also came and said, "Your sons and your daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother's house, and behold, a great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people and they died; and I alone have escaped to tell you."
In these four almost simultaneous disasters, Job lost his children, his work force, his friends, and his wealth at the hand of Satan.
Satan put Job under incredible pressure from his losses in an attempt to cause him to give Satan a place in his soul and enter into mental attitude sins....but we see Job's response in the next few verses.
Job 1:20-22; Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head, and he fell to the ground and worshiped. And he said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, And naked I shall return there or depart from this life. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name or the person of the Lord." Through all this Job did not sin nor did he blame God.
In spite of the disasters that Satan was permitted to cause in order to pressure Job, he did not give in. He did not give Satan a place in his soul by becoming afraid, or bitter or angry or vindictive or committing any other mental attitude sin.
This is an excellent example of how our volition rather than our environment determine our reality if we do not give place for the devil and we persist in thinking Bible Doctrine that keeps us occupied with TLJC rather than ourselves Isa 26:3;KJV
Job maintained his integrity with the use of the problem solving device of Grace Orientation and Personal Love for God.
We see In chapter 2 that in spite of his defeat, Satan does not admit that he was wrong about Job.
Job 2:1-5;, Again there was a day when the sons of God [angels] came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them to present [the Hebrew verb "yatsab" means to take one’s stand, or to set oneself against another, to oppose] himself before the Lord. And the Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “From roaming about on the earth, and walking around on it.”
And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man fearing God and turning away from evil. And he still holds fast his integrity, although you incited Me against him, to ruin him without cause.” And Satan answered the Lord and said,“Skin for skin! Yes, all that a man has he will give for his life. However, put forth Thy hand, now, and touch his bone and his flesh; he will curse Thee to Thy face.”
Satan’s second argument was that if God would let him destroy Job's environment even more and let him take away Job's health, he would fail by blaming God or resorting to other mental attitude sins.
Job 2:6; So the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, he is in your power, only spare his life.”
Satan was allowed to inflict loss of health upon Job, but was prevented from taking his life. Job has been living a life of integrity, and is now under intense suffering.
Just as before, the suffering Job is being placed under is undeserved suffering for blessing.
We refer to as evidence testing because as he maintains his integrity and denies Satan a place of mental attitude sinning in his soul he is Glorifying God and making testimony as a witness for God.
Job is one of the greatest believers of all time, and God is turning him over to Satan to demonstrate to Satan that he cannot turn his testimony regardless of how much he tortures him.
Job 2:7, Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and smote Job with sore boils or skin cancer from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head (from top to bottom).
Now Job was not only suffering from the loss of his children, his business, and his wealth, he has now lost his health.
Job 2:8-10; And he took a potsherd to scrape himself while he was sitting among the ashes. Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die!” But he said to her, “You are speaking as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.
Through all of this adversity, Job stayed in fellowship with God, and he does not even react to his wife who did give a place for the devil when she tells him to "curse God and die"
Throughout all of this adversity, Job did not give any place in his soul to the devil, he accepted his suffering as a gift from God just as had he accepted all of the prosperity he had received from God.
Most believers are willing to accept the prosperity that God gives, but are unwilling to accept the suffering that God permits because they don’t understand why God permits suffering.
We know that in Job's case, per Job 42:10; that The Lord restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and the Lord increased all that Job had twofold.
We see from this example that in spite of intense undeserved suffering Job maintained his integrity. Job 13:15;
Job is an excellent example of a believer who passed the testing that God permitted to come into his life. Job is an example of a believer who did not provide an opportunity or place for the Devil.
An example of an unbeliever who gave an opportunity or place in his soul to the devil is Cain.
We will see that unlike Job, Cain's problem is self-induced because of his arrogance.
In the execution of the rituals imposed upon the original family, Abel, a sheepherder, understood that blood sacrifice was required and brought forth animals, but Cain, a farmer, decided that vegetables were just as good.
The fact that Abel, a believer, and Cain, an unbeliever, both brought offerings at the same time to the same alter indicates that this was an established time and place for a major sacrifice as mandated by God that was signaled by the sun, moon and stars. Gen 1:14;
We see from this verse that there was a ritual plan of sacrifices during the time of the patricharal priesthood.
Gen 4:3;- It came about in the course of time that Cain brought his offering to the Lord of the fruit of the ground.
Cain is in arrogance under satanic influence. His bringing of vegetables as a sacrifice is an effort to acquire salvation by human works, it is not the recognition of salvation by an innocent sacrifice that represents TLJC.
Gen 4:4-5; And Abel, on his part also brought of the firstlings of his flock (that is the first fruits concept of sacrifice and worship )and of their fat portions. And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering; but for Cain and for his offering He had no regard. So Cain became very angry and his countenance fell. Net note 16
Cain's anger gave a larger place of opportunity to the Devil in his soul.
To refrain from anger is to give place to God (Rom 12:19;a), anger can be a giving place to the devil Eph 4:26-31;
If anger becomes revenge, it is an infringement on God's rule of wrath and prerogative of judgment Rom 12:19;b
Cain obviously did not agree that the only legitimate expression of worship was an animal sacrifice and through the arrogant skills he self-justified the substitution of vegetables and when it was rejected he became self absorbed and he blamed God.
Cain was zealous and sincere in his way of thinking and he became jealous and angry that Abel's sacrifice received the Lord's approval but his did not.
Cain became jealous toward Abel because his animal sacrifice is acceptable and zealous over his self-righteous belief that his should also be accepted.
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