A typhoon is about to wipe out a village. A woman and her child survives the typhoon though most of the village is gone. She falls to her knees and starts praising God for their survival. Due to the flooding caused by the typhoon, the next week a mud slide buries the village in mud, killing the woman and child.
Did God protect them from the typhoon but could not protect them from the mud slide? Was it God who brought destruction or was it Satan. If it is Satan, why did God not choose to protect them from Satan both times?
We all think, "Why does God allow things to happen to believers?"
Is it too convenient for us to name what is of God and what is of Satan?
Is it of God or of Satan simply because we say it is?
We must be careful when answering these questions that we do not allow ourselves to be swayed by things that have been taught in error through the centuries. It is too convenient to attach “our beliefs” to any statements and call them truth without comparing it to true revelation that is from God. Truth is revealed through the Bible and the Holy Spirit confirms it is truth. So let us look at what God says concerning how things are under protection or destined to destruction.
Two questions come to mind:
Does God give protection?
Does God bring destruction?
The ways God protects:
He protects those who take heed to his words. Duet 28:1-13; Psalm 91:1--6
He protects those who walk in faith. Proverbs 2:7; 30:5
He protects with his angels. Psalm 91:11-12; Daniel 12:1; Hebrew 1:14
He protects those who wait upon the Lord. Psm 37:34; 59:9; Isa 40:31
He protects us from the wicked one. John 17:15; 1John 5:18; Eph 6:16
He protects us through Jesus Christ. Romans 8:1
[New American Standard Bible] Psalm 121:7-8
The LORD will protect you from all evil; He will keep your soul.
The LORD will guard your going out and your coming in from this time forth and
The ways God brings destruction:
He brings destruction to the disobedient or those who mock him. Ex. 19:12,
He brings destruction upon those who go against the righteous. Psm 78:49
He allows destruction on the proud. Psm 101:5; Proverbs 15:25
He allows the destruction of the wicked. Psm 28:4-5;
He allows destruction upon those who ignore his words. Proverbs 1:23-27
He allows destruction to those who deny Him and his Christ. Phil. 3:18-19; 2Thess 1:7-9.
He commands destruction on the sons of disobedience. Eph 5:6; Colossians 3:6
The obvious must follow. . . Does Satan cause destruction?
We know because of the story of Job, that Satan has power to cause destruction.
He brought fire down from the heavens Job 1:16.
He use people to inflect suffering and death Job 1:15, 17.
He caused a great wind to destroy and kill Job 1:19.
He caused disease Job 2:7.
He caused depression, discouragement, and cursing Job 2:9.
Is Satan the only one that causes bad things to happen to people or do we conveniently say it is Satan to ignore the real reasons certain things happen to us?
Sickness. Does sickness and disease come upon us because Satan is the one who causes sickness or do we help by not taking care of ourselves?
Personal trauma or tragedy in life. Too often the decisions a person makes causes trauma and tragedy to themselves and others. We do endure attacks from the devil, but for the most part we are reaping what we sow in life, which is a spiritual law that we cannot bend (Galatians 6:7).
Bad Luck. The term bad luck is a statement of ignorance. Most people use it without understanding if there is any "luck" taking place good or bad. It’s a term of convenience attached to things we perceive to be good or bad depending upon our point of view.
When we say we are just having a string of bad luck, is it bad luck or just being in the wrong place at the wrong time; or could it be results of not doing things right?
The American Heritage Dictionary defines luck as: The chance happening of fortunate or adverse events. . .Good fortune or prosperity; success....to gain success or something desirable by chance.
Here is how King Solomon viewed chance:
[Ecclesiastes 9:11-13 NKJV] 11 I returned and saw under the sun that--The race [is] not to the swift, Nor the battle to the strong, Nor bread to the wise, Nor riches to men of understanding, Nor favor to men of skill; But time and chance happen to them all. 12 For man also does not know his time: Like fish taken in a cruel net, Like birds caught in a snare, So the sons of men [are] snared in an evil time, When it falls suddenly upon them. 13 This wisdom I have also seen under the sun, and it [seemed] great to me.
So, is God working his will out in us or do we live with the chance that as mortals we might have things good or bad just take place and we must hope for some amount of luck? The truth is we do have many things come at us and seldom do we understand why at first. We generally have to face the repercussions of those things we do wrong and we enjoy the rewards of things we do right. This comes from the spiritual law of sowing and reaping (Galatians 6:7).
At the same time the Bible teaches us we can know Satan's devices and we do not have to become subject to them (2Corinthians 2:11). He does take advantage of our weaknesses and he does hinder us (1Thessalonians 2:18), and he does attack us (John 10:10).
Maybe the bad luck is not having luck that is bad, but rather experiences that are bad.
Natural disasters. Are hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, storms, and other type natural disasters products of Satanic mischief, acts of nature, or acts of God?
People always call natural disasters "acts of God" but they are also referred to as "acts of nature".
We understand nature is controlled by the Lord (Job 28:24-26; 38:1-41).
Jesus showed his ability to control acts of nature (Matthew 8:26-27).
We have also seen in Job Chapters 1 where Satan has controls over nature.
He is the prince and the power of the air (Ephesians 2:2). The air here is the skies.
So who is it that brings natural disasters? If a hurricane or tornado destroys a city or community how can we know if it is a judgement from God or an evil from Satan?
A storm does not separate itself from those who believe in God and those who do not.
Storms destroy and kill the good and the bad; the weak and the strong; the wise and the unwise. To those who receive damages or death from the storm, it is called an attach of Satan or a judgement from God? To those who receive no or little damages and no injuries, it is said they were protected by God's hand. This raises several questions.
Does God use the same storm for judgement and protection?
Does God use the same storm to allow Satan to attach some and not others?
Where is the understanding. . .where is the balance?
All people cry out to God in the midst of a storm for help!
All people praise God in the midst of a storm when they survive!
All people, those who believe in God and those who do not!
The outcry for help and praise for protection is due to humanity already recognizes that God is the one in control more than Satan. God receives either praise or criticism from disasters.
Where we must be careful is how we look at disasters in faith.
Job and his friends debated throughout the entire book of Job trying to settle these same questions we have been looking at. At the end of all the discussions God stopped Job and gave him the answers.
God told Job in Job 40:2, "Shall the one who contends with the almighty correct Him?"
Then again in verse 8 God corrected Job by saying, "Would you indeed annul (discredit) my judgement? Would you condemn me that you may be justified?"
So in our search for truth about natural disasters we must not have the mindset that results in contending with God or discrediting his judgements. We must rely upon truth that is confirmed by the Scriptures and the Holy Spirit and not be weighted down with concepts debated and rehearsed by unbelieve or human rationalizations. This is what they did in the book of Job and many of these untruths are still being accepted by people today.
Two of these untruths are:
That "the Lord giveth, the Lord takes away" (Job 1:21). God did not take away from Job, Satan did.
That God rained fire down upon Job's children killing them (Job 1:16). God did not rain the fire down on Job, Satan did.
Facts about Protection or Destruction
Numbers 14:9 Only do not rebel against the Lord, nor fear the people of the land, for they are our bread; their protection has departed from them, and the Lord is with us. Do not fear.
Isaiah 22:8 He removed the protection of Judah. You looked in that day to the armor of the house of the Forest…
Job 1:10 Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.
Psalm 139:5 You have hedged me behind and before, And laid Your hand upon me.
Psalm 121:3-4 He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps (protects) you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps (protects) Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.
Psalm 37:27-28 Depart from evil and do good. And dwell for evermore.
For the Lord loves justice and does not forsake His saints.
They are preserved forever.
What do you do when you or your family is under attack by demonic powers?
Is there anything you can do that will keep Satan and his demons from attacking you?
In the book of Job Chapter 1:6-12 we are given the story where Satan is bargaining for Job and all of his family. God points out to Satan that his servant Job was blameless, upright, feared God, and shunned away from evil. Satan told God that if the “hedge around him” was taken away Job would not be blessed and protected and Job would then curse God to his face. God lifted the hedge of protection some and Satan was there to bring down destruction to Job, his family, and all that he had. Job lost everything he had in one day; his children were killed, his possessions were destroyed, and his wife denounced. Once God raised the hedge of protection that was around Job, Satan was there to bring him down. Notice, Satan could only do things in the physical realm. He was not allowed to go any further. His attacks are always in some physical manner.
A study through the book of Job will show the way you overcome demonic attacks are through faith and the power of God. What Jesus did on the cross and becoming victorious over sin and death, made it so we are able to do things that Job was not able to do.
We are saved by faith in Jesus Christ and he lives and abides in us, Romans 5:5, 8:10. Job did not have this.
When you are baptized in the Holy Spirit, he is in you, Romans 8:9,11; 1Corinthians 3:16; 6:19. Job did not have this.
Jesus prayed in John 17:15 that God would keep us from the evil one. Job did not have the prayers of Jesus for protection.
Again in 1 John 5:18 the Bible tells us that those who a have been born of God are kept by Him and that the wicked one does not touch them. Job did not have this same protection.
We who are saved have a hedge of protection provided by God, Job 1:10. Job did have this protection.
What Jesus did for All Believers
When Jesus died on the cross and overcame the grave, he was victorious over Satan and his power was stripped away, John 10:10, Hebrews 2:14.
John 16:11 and 12:31 teaches us that Satan was judged.
Jesus came to destroy the works of Satan, 1John 3:8.
He made a public spectacle of principalities and power and triumphed over them, Colossians 2:13-15.
Jesus did not leave it there, he also made it so we can continue in overcoming Satan through the things he has given us:
a. He has given the Armor of God to help in the evil day when we are under attack, Ephesians 6:10-18.
b. He has given us the Fruit of the Spirit to build up our inner man with God’s values, Galatians 5:22.
c. He has given us the Gifts of the Spirit to overcome sickness, life problems,
and evil spirits, 1Corinthians 12:7-11.
To keep Satan from touching us, we have God’s promise of protection in 1 John 5:18.
We can also be crucified in our flesh and not be lured by the craftiness of Satan or evil powers, Galatians 2:20, 5:24-25; Colossians 2:20, 3:1-10.
Because the Holy Spirit is abiding in us after we are baptized in the Spirit, we are capable of walking and living in the Spirit, Galatians 5:16,25.
If we have all of this, how does the hedge of protection become weak, and sometimes Satan still gets through to us?
We have to stay conscious of his devices, 2Chrointhians 2:11.
The more conscious you stay and the more you learn about Satan, the better you become in warning off all he tries to do.
His devices are:
He hinders us, 1Thess 2:18
He tries to take advantage of us, 2Cor 2:11.
He takes captives at his will, 2Tim 2:26.
He is the father of lies, John 8:44.
He was the first to sin, Ezekiel 28:14-15, Isaiah 14:12-15.
He accuses without truth, Job 1:9-11; 2:4-5; Zechariah 3:1-2; Revelation 12:10.
He changes the truth, Genesis 2:2-5; Matthew 4:8-9.
He stills power by using fear, 2Timothy 2:26; Proverbs 3:25; Ephesians 6:12.
Thanks be to God, Jesus came to destroy the works of Satan, and we can too.
John 14:30; Hebrews 2:14; Rom 16:20; 1John 3:8.
Satan wants to destroy and even kill everyone so they can never come to the knowledge of Jesus and so they cannot do the works of Christ, John 10:10.
Satan waits for advantage to get through our hedge of protection as he walks the earth desiring to devour all he can, 1Peter 5:8.
We are told to resist the devil and he will flee from us.
Draw near to God he will draw near to you, James 4:7-8.
Satan is not omnipresent nor is he omniscient. He cannot be everywhere, at all times, nor does he know all things. How Satan knows things is by him hearing and experiencing them. His experience has grown since before God created man. Besides his experience, he relies upon the experience of the entire demonic world. The angels cast out of heaven with Lucifer followed him in rebellion against God and were exiled to the lower parts of the earth (Revelation 12:9; Isaiah 14:14-15). They hold allegiance to Satan where they work their destructive wishes upon all that are not aware that they can be stopped.
As we walk in the Spirit, live close to God, and follow the commands of Jesus, our hedge of protection stays intact.
How the hedge weakens is by pulling away from God.
It is not God’s desire that anyone is destroyed or endures hardship, especially since Jesus died on the cross. In this age, God is more merciful and caring than He was before Jesus came.
Through Jesus Christ, God has become compassionate to our weaknesses and understands our needs better. Jesus is God manifest in the flesh, living as a person; so now God understands us better.
As we continue using the fruit of the spirit, the gifts of the spirit, and the armor of God, we keep drawing closer and closer to God. If we avoid doing these things we are pulling back from God. If we pull back, God pulls back, and the wall of protection is made weaker, allowing Satan and his devises to attack us. As long as you are using the things of the Spirit of God the hedge of protection is not weakened and you are not attacked.
If you will go so far as to learn what it means to live a crucified life for Jesus your flesh cannot respond to things of the physical realm and Satan will stop trying to touch you because you do not respond. Your flesh is dead in Christ. A dead thing can’t respond in the physical world, it is dead to it.
So use the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22) to become more like Jesus.
Fruit of the Spirit are:
Love, Joy, Peace, Long suffering, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, Self-control.
Use the Gifts of the Spirit (1Corinthians 12:8-10) to overcome sickness, evil, and needs in life.
Gifts of the Spirit are:
Word of wisdom – things spoken into your life that were not known by you or the one speaking.
Word of knowledge – things spoken into your life that were known by either you or the one speaking, to confirm what God is teaching you.
Faith – allowing you the ability to go believe.
Healing – ability to overcome sickness.
Miracles – ability to overcome things in the physical realm to meet your needs.
Prophecy – Blessings and knowledge of future things.
Discerning of Spirits -- ability to sense things in the spirit realm.
Speaking in Tongues – ability to communicate in the spirit realm and Satan or demonic cannot understand.
Interpretation of Tongues - The ability to translate some speaking in tongues.
Use the Armor of God to withstand Satan or demonic when a time of evil is upon you (Ephesians 6:14-18).
The Armor of God is:
Truth – So you do not have to believe lies and can life in God’s truths. You do not have to receive the lies of Satan who is the father of lies.
Righteousness – You are righteous in Christ and you do not have to accept anything that would accuse you because of something you did wrong. You righteousness is in Christ.
Gospel of Peace - The Gospel of Jesus reassures us and gives us peace.
Faith – ability to believe God and the things of Jesus.
Salvation - You are saved and nothing can take that away or change it. You belong to Christ and in Him we are forgiven.
Sword of the Spirit which is the Bible – To know who God is and know what we can do to maintain fellowship with God.
Praying in the Spirit or Praying in Tongues – Making us able to communicate without Satan and demons being able to know what we are praying about.
Things that are not done by God or Satan.
Evil hearted people will do things against the righteous that is contrary to God’s will.
Sickness due to bad choices.
Hardness in life due to bad choices.
Staying ignorant of Satan's devices.
Staying ignorant of God's protection and love through Jesus Christ.
Why We are Protected.
It is in relationship with God, we have protection. He maintains us by his love and through the blood of Jesus Christ. Those who do not have this relationship are not under the same promises and covenant protections. It is not that we who are protected are more entitled because we are more special, or that we have done something great and wonderful; but that the relationship with God through the blood of Jesus Christ affords great and precious promises, one of which is protection instead of destruction.