No unbeliever wants to be a Christian.
It’s not just a stubborn refusal to trust in God’s promises [because they are dead in sin], the removal of social barriers, or even the hypocrisy of a church that holds a person back, but something even more powerful.
When evangelists don’t acknowledge the spiritual forces behind unbelief, they will be ill-equipped to provide an appropriate and ongoing response to counter them.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Eph. 6:10-12)
Evangelism is a battleground. When Christian believers step out in faith to share their faith with others, they automatically involve themselves in a battle of cosmic proportions. They should not be surprised when difficulties arise or when there is opposition.
“If we underestimate the magnitude of the battle, we will not be properly equipped for it. We are entering the devil’s stronghold. We need to be armed, then, with something, or Someone, stronger than Satan.” (Rev. David Valleskey)
When the Lord appeared before Saul on the road to Damascus and commissioned him to be an apostle, herald, and teacher (2 Tim. 1:11), he told him that he will be sent to “turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God.” (Acts 26:18) The Lord is sending all believers on a similar rescue mission so that He may be reconciled with His lost children. If Christians are not equipped to enter Satan’s stronghold during these missions, they can expect to be defeated. Many times, the subtlety of Satan’s attacks can cause Christians to not even realize it.
Here are 3 ways the “Power of Satan” can affect the work of an evangelist:
- Stubbornness on the part of the unbeliever
Believers must remember who the unbeliever is. They are; 1) born in sin; 2) living in sin; and 3) actively opposed to God (Col. 1:13). Every unbeliever is a part of Satan’s “Dominion of darkness” and needs to be rescued by the power of God’s Word. Stubbornness reveals their condition.
- Subtle outward attacks on the evangelist
A life in Christ is a struggle. There are attacks on faith that take the form of temptation. One of the strongest temptations for every Christian is to be convinced that they are not able to share the gospel with others or too afraid to attempt.
- Unfruitful responses to God’s purpose and timing
Our sinful nature demands an immediate response. In today’s world, the journey to faith can often be long and arduous. In Christ, we are patient and kind rather than impatient and frustrated. We trust in the power of God’s Word and remain in His trust to exhibit fruits of the Spirit that helps lead a lost soul to repentance.
God’s business is to rescue people from Satan’s clutches and restore them to their place in God’s family. Evangelists are God’s agents. They use His means – law and gospel – the message of sin and grace — to convict people of sin and to bring about repentance, faith, and a new life. It is a message of reconciliation between a lost child and a loving Father – and re-birthed into a new life in Christ.
Every time a Christian is prompted to share the gospel, they enter a spiritual battlefield. By relying on the power of God’s Word, they have a reliable weapon to conquer the power of Satan and help bring a lost soul to faith in Christ.