Colossians 1:13-14 (New International Version)
13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Tammy (not her real name) faced a promising future. She was a bright and outgoing kid who enjoyed life to the fullest. When she was seven years old however, she came face to face with a fierce temptation: to steal one of her parents' cigarettes. She was unable to resist, and one day when she was away from the direct supervision of her parents, she tried it. It tasted nasty; nonetheless, she was determined that she would smoke it, just as she saw her parents do. And she did. All the way down to the butt.
In all honesty, it was an innocent act. She was simply curious to find out why her parents smoked so much. But one cigarette wasn't enough to tell her. She had to try it again. And again. Before long she experienced first-hand the answer to her question. She, too, became addicted. Now she didn't just steal cigarettes out of curiosity, she stole them because she needed them. She had to be careful though, because if her parents ever found out, she would most definitely be punished.
The next five years were a living hell. Tammy had to lie, steal and cheat to continue her habit. She wanted to quit, and she tried everything in her power to do so, but to no avail. She had handed over her authority to enjoy life to its fullest to the vicious tyranny of nicotine.
When she was twelve years old, she decided to seek outside help. She confessed her living lie to her teacher. He gave her some tips and said he would pray for her. Then he suggested that she rely on her best friend for strength in breaking the habit. The suggestions turned her life around. It wasn't easy at first, but she was eventually delivered from the claws of this monstrous habit, and after five years of slavery, she was finally free.
This true story is a perfect illustration of what has happened to humankind since Eden. Adam, the first representative of mankind, had been created in the image of God and was designated as the ruler of this world: "Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." (Gen 1:26 NIV)
This God-given authority was quickly undermined however, when Adam fell for the lies and deceptions of Satan: "'You will not surely die,' the serpent said to the woman. 'For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.'" (Gen 3:4-5 NIV)
The trap had been set and humankind took the bait. Not realizing that they had renounced their allegiance to the One who made them rulers in the first place, they inadvertently accepted Satan as their ruler and master.
The devil's authority was shattered however, when Jesus died for us on the cross and was resurrected three days later. God, who had become one of us, made redemption possible: "For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins." (Col 1:13-14 NIV)
Isn't God awesome? He doesn't work on this Earth independently of us; He works through a partnership with humanity!
The devil was defeated on the cross. He has lost his claims on planet Earth forever. He no longer has any authority! He does still have power, however. His power lies in his ability to deceive. When we fall for his deceptions, we give him authority over our lives and he takes us captive: "[Satan goes] out to deceive the nations…" (Rev 20:8 NIV)
Just like Tammy who gave her authority over to an addictive lifestyle, numerous human beings are caught unaware by the deceptions of the evil one (alcohol, stealing, sex addiction, workaholic…). Those imprisoned may not even realize that they are pawns in the devil's hand, but in reality, they are his prisoners and release seems impossible.
As followers of Christ, we have authority to bind the evil one. We need depend on God's Spirit for guidance and pray with the authority Jesus has given us, binding Satan legally, rendering his evil works to nothingness, and God will back us up with His power. Believe and trust in the One who made it possible and watch the impossible become possible. Believe in the salvation of your loved ones and claim their freedom over the addictions bestowed on them through the deceptions of the devil. Believe, watch and be blessed.
Dear Lord we thank You that the devil has no authority over us. Help us claim victory today that is possible because You paid the price on the cross. In Jesus’ name, Amen.