SATAN’S DAYS ARE NUMBERED
1. An angel was once given a special assignment—to go down to earth and make a list of all the people who had misbehaved. Two months went by.
2. Then one afternoon the angel came flapping wearily through the Pearly Gates to St. Peter. “Sir,” he said, “you don’t know the magnitude of this job. I’m going to need some help.”
3. Impossible,” St. Peter replied tersely. “We’re shorthanded up here as it is. You’ll have to go it alone.”
4. Then the angel was struck with an idea. “Saint Peter, suppose I made a list of all the people who didn’t misbehave. It would be much shorter and I could finish it in a week.” “Good thinking,” said St. Peter.
5. The angel returned to earth and, as promised, he was back in a week with his list. St. Peter studied it and ordered him to write a letter to everyone on the list, commending them for their good behavior.
6. “And do You know what else the letter said?” he asked. [When the people say, “What?”, say,] “AHA! I can see that YOU didn’t get one of the letters!” [James Dent in Charleston Gazette].
[As Christians we know the end of the story, we have read the final chapter, we know that the devil is going down. We should have that peace; we should have that hope; we should be excited.]
1 And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. 2 He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. 3 He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and
sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations any more until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.
10 And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever” Rev. 20:1-3, 10.
1. The New Testament reveals much about Satan’s inner nature, by his descriptions and names.
2. Devil (diabolos) means “false accuser, Satan, slanderer” in Greek. Satan is called “dragon” in Rev. 12:3;20:2, as well as the “evil one.” Rev. 12:9 calls him “that ancient serpent,” and Mt. 4:3 calls him the “tempter.” Other names for Satan include Beelzebub or Beelzebul (Mt. 12:27), Belial (2 Cor. 6:15), “god of this world/age” (2 Cor. 4:4), prince of this world (John 12:31), and father of lies (John 8:44).
3. Tonight we're looking at how "Satan's Days Are Numbered." We're going to see how this is a 1). cause for rejoicing, 2). a cause for concern, 3). and a parallel that should spur us to action.
I. CAUSE FOR REJOICING!
A. HE KNOWS IT’S GETTING CLOSE
1. In Matthew 8:29, a fearful demon cried to the Lord Jesus, “Have you come to torment us before the time?” It’s amazing that the Church doesn’t understand what the devil does.
2. Even the demons know there is an appointed time for their judgment, and they have a good idea of how close it is.
3. The devil’s going down soon—the reason you see so much demonic activity in our world today, is that his time is almost up.
4. The devil’s going down, the church is going up. We need to realize that his defeat and our victory are at hand. I believe we should give it all we have because we are in the last days.
5. I like the theology of a truck driver named Ricky that
visited a church. He said, “Pastor, I believe I should work harder for Jesus than I did for the devil.”
B. LISTEN TO THE GREAT ANNOUNCEMENT:
1. “Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down. They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death” Rev.12:10-11.
2. How wonderful! No more accuser; no more temptation; no more adversary; no more sickness; no more death; no more sorrow or crying; no more evil! What a wonderful promise!
3. Revelation 20 tells us that Satan will be thrown into the Lake of fire. He will never get out! Previous to this he was put in the bottomless pit for 1,000 years, but still to be released for a time.
4. But verse 10 speaks of a time when there will be no more Satan! He will be thrown in the "outer darkness." Second Thessalonians says that unbelievers will be "shut out of the presence of the Lord and the glory of His majesty."
5. So after the destruction of the present heavens and Earth, all that is re-created will be without the taint of sin or Satan; spotless, never having been defiled. This means that Satan will be outside the realm of that creation and can never trouble us again!
6. In contrast is Jesus' Reign that will last forever; the Scripture says, "Whose Kingdom shall never end!"
7. It's wonderful to realize that the devil's days are numbered and there are very few left. Remembering the judgment on Belshazzar, “This is what these words mean: ‘Mene:’ God has numbered the days of your reign and brought it to an end” Dan. 5:26.
8. This same judgment has been declared upon the devil. Hallelujah! It’s a “DONE DEAL”: “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels’” (Matthew 25:41).
II. CAUSE FOR CONCERN
A. THE WARNING FROM REV. 12
1. “Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short” Rev. 12:12.
2. What does it say is the devil's reaction to the fact that he only has a short time? He is “filled with wrath."
3. Another way of saying that is, that the devil goes into a panic. He begins working feverishly, throwing himself headlong into the task of pulling down everyone he can with him.
B. THE ENEMY’S RESPONSE TO THE NEWS
1. This has a sobering side. It means that the devil is pulling out all the stops; he's giving it all he's got; he's going for broke; he's all in (as with chips and a gambling game).
2. This warns us about what we're up against. Even the Angels say, "Woe to you on the Earth."
3. If you're in a running race and you see that your competition is behind you, you can keep running at the pace you're going. But if you see that your competition is stepping up the pace, it signals to you that you got to step it up too.
4. That's what this Scripture is saying: Our competition is going full throttle. That means we've got to go full throttle too, except for God's kingdom.
5. That means no lollygagging, no taking it easy, no coasting. Instead, we've got to give every day our best shot and do everything for God we can!
III. WE SHOULD NUMBER OUR DAYS
A. PARALLEL SITUATION BUT NOT RESPONSE
1. There's one-way we’re similar to the devil; with both of us our days are numbered! Listen to Moses:
2. “So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom” Ps. 90:12. Okay, we get it. The devil knows his days are numbered, so he's ‘going for broke.’ Should we take a lesson from him?
3. Here the Lord's commendation of the unjust steward fits the case; “And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light” Luke 16:8.
4. It's sad that the darkness is smarter about spiritual things than the people of the light. If we had the same snap, we go full throttle in these last days too.
B. THE PURPOSE OF YOUR LIFE -- NOW
1. “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil” Eph. 5:15-16. The NIV says, “15 Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”
2. Mordecai told Esther that she had "come to the kingdom for such a time as this." God had put her in that very time and place, and given her the talents and abilities that she had, so she could accomplish a specific set of tasks to enlarge the kingdom. She did it.
3. We may not be an Esther, but we too are "called to the kingdom for such a time as this." Let's don't waste our opportunities, but make the most of them!
4. Let’s make the devil “pay” for all the tempting, afflicting, tormenting he’s done to us and our families!
1. When Jerry Savelle was growing up in school, he was always the smallest boy in the class. Most of the girls were bigger than him. He was known as "Little Jerry." He hated it.
2. He got picked on and pushed around; all the big guys bullied him. His Dad told him, "Son, if I ever catch you starting a fight, I'm going to whip you. If I ever catch you running from a fight, I'm going to whip you."
3. But he wasn't big enough to start fights. So he got pushed and bullied around almost everyday, but there finally came a time when he got fed up with it! He says,
4. “Finally, I told that bully, "Time's up!" He didn't think I meant it. I said, "That's it! You're not going to push me around anymore and you're not going to steal my stuff anymore. I'm tired of you embarrassing me in front of the class. Time's up!"
4. He laughed and turned to all the kids standing around watching and said, "Did you hear what little Jerry said?" Before he got turned around again, there was a fist in his nose! He landed on his back. Jerry jumped right in the middle of his chest and finished the job.
5. He pleaded with Jerry to leave him alone, but he said, "Too bad - time's up! I'm taking over now!" And you know what? He never bothered Jerry again.
6. I believe it's time for us to tell the devil, "Time's up! You have plagued me long enough! You've kept me bound up long enough! You've kept me strapped with debt long enough! You've tried to destroy my home, my marriage, and my family, but your time is up in this house, devil - God is taking over!"
B. THE CALL
1. Isn't it great news that the Devil’s days are numbered? That means the day is coming when we won't have to put up with him anymore!
2. What can you do differently to match the feverish pitch of the enemy's activities than what you're doing now?
3. How can we be wiser "Sons of Light?" What can we do to "number our days?"
4. Let's give God our very best in the few remaining days we have! Let's pray!