Have you seen the Beast today?

Church Family: As we live our lives in this world as followers of Christ and we watch the chaos unravel each day with an ever-increasing level of evil, do we get a sense that there is an organized power behind these movements and systems and individuals? Do we think there must be a leader, an organizer, a General in charge of these consistent and pointed attacks?
 
In our world today there are endless systems that exalt themselves over and against God’s holiness and His sovereignty. We see this in our news, social media platforms, politics, economics, executive orders and religious institutions. We even see that these systems have permeated everything from sports teams and clothing brands, to purchasing pillows and pimento cheese. We are seeing more and more clearly that governments, corporations, sports leagues, and store chains have a heart. They have a spirit. We see this as they declare what is right and wrong. They are “virtue signaling” with their own standards of morality. And it is very clear that their standards of morality are in opposition to God’s standard of holiness, ethics, justice, and morals. The world opposition movement is at war with God and His people.
As believers, followers of Christ, how are we to respond in this battle? As in every battle we fight, we must understand who we are fighting against. Who is the enemy? Who is empowering all of this chaos and rebellion? The Bible calls these world systems that Satan empowers, “the Beast” (Revelation 13:1-2). The heart of these systems is empowered by Satan himself. There are no “gray areas” as Jesus communicates this to us. We are either following the ways of the world systems empowered by the Beast or we are followers of Jesus Christ and part of His Church. These systems, whether they are individuals or institutions, have a heart’s desire that is in rebellion and opposition to God.
 
The Beast is the manifestation of Satan’s heart through the world’s institutions and movements promoting ungodliness and canceling godliness. These institutions, social movements, economic policies, executive orders, and presidential appointments have made righteousness look ridiculous and shamed while taking unrighteousness and promoting it as virtuous and highly exalted – that is the Beast.
 
In Revelation 13, Jesus wants us to understand that Satan is behind all of this, so that we focus our fight, energy, and prayers accurately. This is not a battle against Republican vs. Democrat; Fox News vs. MSNBC; USA vs. whoever; Me vs. Co-worker; University vs. Christian; Equality Act vs. Freedom of Religion; etc. This is a spiritual battle that manifests itself in all of these areas. These areas are where we see the fruit of the spiritual battle. We fight the battle first spiritually then we fight against the fruit of the Beast. How do we fight the spiritual battle with the Beast? We are called to cry out to God to wage war against everything that opposes Him. Call upon God’s promises to be powerfully demonstrated in His people, His Church. Cry out to God for a personal release from the desires of the world. And then live life knowing that God has won the battle! The Beast and all of his workers, individuals, systems and institutions are defeated, “thrown alive into the lake of fire” (Rev.19:20). Let this victory form our words and our attitude our boldness and our serving and giving and doing, because the Beast has been defeated.
 
James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

I look forward to worshiping the Lion and the Lamb, Jesus Christ, with you Sunday. – Steve

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