Recently, a neighbor posted a few sentences on social media thanking our community for praying during Hurricane Florence. That simple post ignited a heated debate that went on for three days. It was raw, and it was ugly.

It’s difficult to speak out in today’s culture, isn’t it? No matter what “side” you are on, chances are, you’ll get a push-back. With relentless bitter disputes on social media and on the news, we may be tempted to keep our faith to ourselves.

You might be surprised to know that early Christians, too, were challenged when they spoke out about their faith. Jesus was often surrounded by Pharisees waiting to pounce on His every word. Culturally, First Century Christians shared their faith in a very dangerous time:

“So have I become your enemy by telling you the truth?” – Galatians 4:16 NASB:

Let’s step back from the cultural battles of today and look at the strife from a spiritual perspective. People are pitted against one another, yes, but in truth, we are not enemies. We were created to be the beloved children of God.

We were meant to be siblings in God’s family.

However, as a kidnapper steals the treasured child of a royal dignitary, we, too, were separated from God through the deceit of our real enemy. The good news is that we were ransomed by Jesus  back to our Father through the blood of Christ.

The Hidden Enemy

Who, then, is our real enemy? Is it those who gathered together by like-mindedness, warring on the streets with each other? Is it the social media troll, or friends and family members who oppose us online?

No.

Our real enemy is the same, rebellious foe who wars with the Father. His strategy is to accuse, depress and destroy those whom the Father cherishes: That’s us.

Our enemy lies, cheats and steals from us. The rage we see on the streets today bubbles up from his black, cold heart. 

Our enemy wants us to be silent. He doesn’t want us to share the truth about Jesus and the gift of redemption. He doesn’t want us to tell others about God’s inheritance of promises, or share our testimony of hope.

The enemy wants to shut us up. That his modus operandi. 

Speaking out is risky, but now more than ever people need to hear about Jesus and the truth of the Bible. Before we speak out its imperative to draw close to the Lord to allow the Holy Spirit to show us how and when to speak out in today’s culture.

Before we speak out we need to understand the authority that Jesus has won over our enemy.

Understanding our Authority In Christ

Our enemy is  a defeated foe. He hopes that we never fully understand the fullness of the victory that Christ died to give to us. It’s a complete victory, and it’s for right here— now— in this present time:

And when they saw Him, they fell down and worshiped Him; but some doubted. Jesus approached and, breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.

Go then and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you, and behold, I am with you all the days (perpetually, uniformly, and on every occasion), to the [very] close and consummation of the age. Amen (so let it be).

Matthew 28:17-20 AMPC

What does the above verse mean by saying “all authority has been given to Me?” 

Let’s go back in the Bible to trace when we first read about authority over the earth. In Genesis 1, before the fall, we learn that God gave Adam (“mankind”) complete authority over the things of the earth:

God said, Let Us [Father, Son, and Holy Spirit] make mankind in Our image, after Our likeness, and let them have complete authority over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the [tame] beasts, and over all of the earth, and over everything that creeps upon the earth.

Genesis 1:26 AMPC

Did you catch that? So if we once had authority… how did we lose it?

Our real enemy — Satan— deceived Adam and Eve into transferring that authority to him by doubting God’s word.  In doing so, they opposed God by eating of the forbidden fruit, the one thing God commanded Adam not to do. This action led to “The Fall.”

Man (Adam) handed over his God-given authority to Satan, much like Esau handed over his birthright to Jacob.

Satan speaks of this transfer of power in the wilderness during Christ’s temptation:

Then the devil took Him up to a high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the habitable world in a moment of time [in the twinkling of an eye].

And he said to Him, To You I will give all this power and authority and their glory (all their magnificence, excellence, preeminence, dignity, and grace), for it has been turned over to me, and I give it to whomever I will.

Luke 4:5-6 AMPC

The word for “turned over” is “paradidōmi” (Strong: G3860) meaning “to give over, hand over, or deliver up.”

In other words, when Satan deceived Adam and Eve, he tricked them into handing over their God-given authority on the earth to Satan.

The result is the fallen world we have today…  with all of its anger, pain and suffering. This is what we see in the news every day!

The Truth Satan Does Not Want You to Know

Satan does not want us to know Jesus won this authority back. Through His battle on the cross, Jesus confirms this truth in Matthew 28:17:

And when they saw Him, they fell down and worshiped Him; but some doubted. Jesus approached and, breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.

Matthew 28:17-18 AMPC

Then, after declaring this important truth, Jesus tells the disciples (and us!) what to do with this knowledge:

Go then and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you, and behold, I am with you all the days (perpetually, uniformly, and on every occasion), to the [very] close and consummation of the age. Amen (so let it be).

Matthew 28:19-29 AMPC

Jesus called us to “make disciples of all nations” and to teach them what we have learned from Jesus. This is Jesus’s call to speak out in His authority and power.

Our enemy does not want us to know this truth!

Satan wants to deceive us into believing that he, our enemy, still has authority, but in truth, he lost it to Jesus at the cross. We, then, having faith in Jesus, can step out in HIS AUTHORITY and POWER and lead others to restoration to the Father through Christ.

Need another Biblical example? Here is a passage from Luke 10:

The seventy returned with joy, saying, Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name! And He said to them, I saw Satan falling like a lightning [flash] from heaven.

 

 

Behold! I have given you authority and power to trample upon serpents and scorpions, and [physical and mental strength and ability] over all the power that the enemy [possesses]; and nothing shall in any way harm you.

Nevertheless, do not rejoice at this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are enrolled in heaven.

Luke 10:17-20 AMPC

Why Does This Matter?

We do not need to be afraid of speaking out, nor do we need to fear our defeated foe! Jesus has all power and authority of Heaven and Earth. That’s today!

In His name, we, too, can be bold, speaking to others about God’s love.

Isn’t this what our culture needs right now? The Love, Light and Truth of Jesus?

There’s more….

In the next segment, I’ll write about another key to speaking out in today’s culture: Knowing who you are in Christ. 

Please share this message with others. Let me know your comments and questions by contacting me here.

Blessings to you,

Kelly

Photo by Robert Koorenny on Unsplash / Suggested Music for the Journey: Rise” by Josh Garrels

Kelly Langston Reach Your Promised Land

Be encouraged! Subscribe!

I write to encourage... that's my gift. I write about following your God-inspired dream, spiritual gifts, God's remarkable promises, and posts to help you see more of God's presence around you.

By completing this form, you are subscribing to my newsletter. (Thanks!) Remember, you can unsubscribe anytime.

Thank you! You'll be hearing from me again! Be blessed, Kelly

Pin It on Pinterest