One of Satan’s most effective weapons with which he keeps church people under his power is Biblical ignorance. He accomplishes this by hiding God’s “fine print” (90% of the Bible) from them. Like the pickpocket who draws his victim’s attention away from his pocket while lifting his wallet, Satan draws his victim’s attention to God’s “headlines” while blinding them to his “fine print,” thereby “robbing” him of the knowledge needed to bring the “headline” to fruition.
My ministerial assignment in this life involves those who know God’s “headlines” but not His “fine print.” I am tasked with directing their attention to God’s “fine print” that causes the “headlines” to be manifested. To do this I must alert them to the work of the ultimate spiritual pickpockets–Satan and his false prophets–whose job is to dazzle them with God’s pot of gold while blinding them to His map showing how to find it. Let us continue in the Book of Ephesians by examining His map which leads to the gold. Without the former the latter is meaningless.
In verse 2 of the first chapter Paul pronounces grace (unearned favor) and peace from both Father and Son. Note that the Holy Spirit is not mentioned. Why? Because it is not the third member of a so-called “trinity.” Read The Trinity. Key word–Trinity. Let us now focus on the Godhead’s gift of PEACE available to His Very Elect as well as Satan’s false peace to those who think they are God’s Very Elect.
In John 14:27; 16:33; 20:19,21,26 we find the Lord saying to His disciples: “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you …. Let not your heart be troubled or afraid …. These things I have spoken to you so that you will have peace.” The common concept of peace within professing Christendom involves two main subjects: 1) peacefully bearing up under such inevitable burdens as sickness, natural disasters, bad luck, accidents, financial problems, etc. and 2) getting along with the unchurched and with those within other church groups. We see #1 manifested when a tornado, fire, flood, etc. takes everything a church member owns and leaves him/her in the hospital. When this happens, one will hear his/her statement of confidence that “I have peace knowing that God gives me peace.” Right statement–wrong god. In #2 is the norm for church people relative to their relationship with those of other denominations, religions, etc. Statements relative to having this kind of peace are the “headlines” preached repeatedly from the world’s pulpits as the devil’s false prophets proclaim God’s “pot of gold” while ignoring His “map.” They also fail to explain to their parishioners WHY they are experiencing the above-mentioned catastrophes (corrections) and WHO is sending them. The Lord’s “fine print” answers both questions.
Contrary to popular church opinion, God does not want people to have peace during their correction periods. Example: the coronovirus. Rather than peace, He commands fear. Fear of Him would drive them to the Holy Scriptures where they would learn why they are being attacked and by Whom. A Scriptural passage that tells us why and by whom is found in the fifth chapter of John’s Gospel where we learn that Jesus has healed a man of an incurable disease from which he had suffered for 38 years. After healing him, Jesus voiced some “fine print” that answers both the “why” and the “who” questions: “Behold you are healed. SIN no more, lest a worse THING (DISEASE) come upon you.” Jesus was telling him that SIN HAD CAUSED HIS DISEASE and that the HEALER OF THE DISEASE would afflict him with an even worse disease if he continued to sin. Jesus did not tell him that if he sinned and was afflicted even worse than before, that he would have peace while bearing up under the curse God Himself had put on him. Such “peace” is the false peace Satan gives Catholics and Protestants when they are being cursed by God for their sins. I know from experience how that Satanic theology works and how the deceiver convinces his parishioners that they are right with God even while He is cursing them. Isaiah 59:2 states that sin separates us from God. Satan tells sinning church people that the peace they have during their suffering is coming from God. Never underestimate the power Satan has over those within professing Christendom. His power is total and can be broken only through true repentance and true conversion followed by obedience to the Law of the true God. That same God said through the Apostle John: “To TRANSGRESS the LAW is SIN, for SIN is the TRANSGRESSION of the LAW” (1 Jn. 3:4). Sin causes separation from God (His Spirit), which leaves the sinner to operate under his own power. To Satan dealing with such a church person is like shooting fish in a barrel. Now we will study God’s “fine print” relative to the true meaning of the PEACE God gives to His true saints and why they need it.
In Matthew 10:34-39 Jesus is saying to His disciples: “Do not think that I came to bring peace to the earth. I did NOT come to bring PEACE, but rather a SWORD (God’s Word–Eph. 6:17). For I came to pit a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a man’s enemies will be those of his own family.” In verse 38 Jesus calls such FAMILY WARFARE a “cross” that His people must bear. The “cross” is the rejection suffered for applying the “sword” (Word) of the Lord to every aspect of life. The peace that He gives us in the face of family rejection transcends all understanding as we bear up under the burden of being rejected by those whom we love unconditionally and without limit. Knowing that believing and obeying God’s Word makes us spiritual outcasts in the minds of our cherished ones is a heavy burden indeed. The peace He offers His true saints enables them to soldier on when all around us reject us on the spiritual level–life’s most basic level.
Also included in this unbelievable peace is that which His people exhibited when being fed to lions, burned alive, pulled apart by horses, killed with the sword, beheaded, sawn in half and hunted down and slaughtered like animals during the Catholic Inquisition. Peace during such horror can only come from God. It is the same peace He gave to Jesus in the hours before His beating and crucifixion when He said to His Father: “… not My will but thine be done.” This was the peace given to the apostles as they were being martyred in horrific ways. In the near future some of their spiritual descendants will be treated in the same way by the descendants of the same people who killed their (the saints’) spiritual ancestors. God warns that this will be the case for some of His Very Elect. It is for this reason that He tells us to “count the cost” of doing battle on His behalf (Lk. 14:28). Whether we live or die, there is a cost to count. Read Persecution using that word as the key. L.J.