In the beginning…
Wikipedia defines military intelligence as a military discipline that uses information collection and analysis approaches to provide guidance and direction to commanders in support of their decisions. In other words, if you’re engaged in warfare, you had better know who you’re up against. Spiritual victory requires an accurate understanding of all the individuals involved in the battle. This includes an accurate assessment of your own strengths and weaknesses, knowing who your allies are and of course, who you’re going up against. Let’s start with enemy intelligence today.
First things first. In order to accurately understand the enemy we need to go back to the beginning. In Ezekiel 28, we learn a bit about Satan’s origin. And it may not be what you would expect. In this chapter the prophet Ezekiel is speaking out against the King Tyre. This king’s greatest downfall was his own pride. In fact, he actually believed that he himself was a god. Starting in verse 12, Ezekiel’s focus seems to shift a bit:
“Son of man, take up a lamentation over the king of Tyre and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “You had the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: the ruby, the topaz and the diamond; the beryl, the onyx and the jasper; the lapis lazuli, the turquoise and the emerald; and the gold, the workmanship of your settings and sockets, was in you, on the day you were created they were prepared.” “You were the anointed cherub who covers, and I placed you there. You were on the holy mountain of God; you walked in the midst of the stones of fire. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created until unrighteousness was found in you.”
“By the abundance of your trade you were internally filled with violence, and you sinned; therefore I have cast you as profane from the mountain of God. And I have destroyed you, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.”
“Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor.”
There are several clues in this portion of Ezekiel 28 that show us the prophet has switched his focus from the human king of Tyre, to the spiritual king of Tyre, whose name is Satan. For example, the human king would have never been in the garden of Eden. He would not have had access to the holy mountain of God, nor would he have ever been referred to as the “anointed cherub” as is the case in these verses.
So you may be asking yourself, what does this have to do with my own spiritual war? Let’s cover just a few points.
- Satan was created by God. Therefore we must realize that as a created being, he was never and will never be equal to or higher than his creator. So we’re not talking about equal, opposing armies here. God is, was, and will always be greater, wiser and stronger than our enemy. Before I realized this I often pictured spiritual war like two pistol-packing cowboys on opposite ends of a dusty street. One was wearing all black, and of course one was in all white. But this is not accurate in the least bit. So please understand, God wins. In fact, He was never at risk of losing. God is greater and good trumps evil.
- Like the human king of Tyre, pride was Satan’s downfall. Actually, let’s turn that around. Like Satan, pride was the human king’s downfall. This is a very important point. Since Satan’s biggest sin was his pride-filled heart, you can be absolutely certain that pride will be the very same temptation he will try to use against us to cause us to fall too. No doubt, Satan may have been hard at work in the human king’s heart.
- Satan was also known as Lucifer, which means “shining one,” “son of the morning”, or “morning star”. He was the chief of the highest order of angels, the cherubim. Before his fall, he was in the garden of God, Eden, with full access to God’s throne. He was given the special task of ministering to God through worship and praise. He was to glorify God with music. And this amazing ministry all come to an abrupt end the day Satan’s pride brought him crashing down from the heights of Heaven. He was looking for the ultimate promotion and ended up with a world renown demotion. And he’s none too pleased when any one of us is granted the very privilege and honor he has lost. But that’s what Christ’s sacrifice bought for each of us. Access to God and a purpose to glorify Him!
Our final word for today comes from 1 Chronicles 28:20: Then David said to his son Solomon, “Be strong and courageous, and act; do not fear nor be dismayed, for the Lord God, my God is with you. He will not fail you nor forsake you until all the work for the service of the house of the Lord is done.”
So fear not, Precious One. And glow on!