Good Friday and Satan
I have written two articles on the workings of Satan. One focuses on the value of his attacks for the Christian, the second directs our attention to the methods he employs against the a person. Today, since it is Good Friday, I want to show a critical connection between Satan and Jesus’ death.
In Romans 16 there is a little sentence that is easily passed by with the eyes. It is verse 20, part of which reads, “the God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” Here is one of those passages that should bring our minds hurtling backward to Genesis 3 where God tells fallen Adam and Eve that the Seed would one day crush the head of Satan. It is not uncommon to hear that Satan was defeated at the Cross, but this is not quite proper. Notice how Paul is looking to the future in Romans 16 regarding the crushing of Satan, not backwards to the Cross. So, when does it happen? When is Satan finally crushed beneath the feet of our Lord? Like many things in the bible the answer is that it occurs over time through various events.
The first step is that it began in the Garden—Genesis 3:14-15. There are several players in this curse by God. There would be an enmity put between the serpent and the woman. The enmity is to be beyond merely Satan and Eve. It is to involve generations of people. There will be a war that will be ongoing between the devil’s offspring and her offspring . And then the ultimate battle, the offspring of the woman would do battle with Satan, not his offspring, and crush him.
The second step is the first advent of Jesus. Passages such as Luke 10:17-18, John 12:31; 16:11 are examples on how Jesus exerted His authority over Satan. Over and over we read that the demons were subject to Him.
The third step is at the Cross–John 3:8. It is at the Cross where Jesus becomes that perfect sacrifice for the very sin that Satan exploits as the god of this age. It is at the Cross where the justice and love of God kiss and the power of sin is broken.
The fourth step is at the resurrection of Jesus. It is in the resurrection that we see that the death of Jesus was an acceptable sacrifice. We see in the resurrection that the power of death is broken. It is the resurrection of Jesus that becomes the first fruit (1 Corinthians 15:20) of all other resurrections to come. Without Jesus’ resurrection everything else simply doesn’t matter.
The fifth and final step is at the end of this age (Revelation 20:1-6). There Jesus utterly destroys Satan, casting him into the lake of fire never to be a factor again. As we enter into eternity and the glory of the new heavens and earth, there we will exult when death, sin, and Satan are banished. Gone forevermore, swallowed up in the victory of our Lord and Savior.