Summary: A sermon on Satan from Romans 16:20 (Outline and some material taken from John Piper at: http://www.desiringgod.org/resource-library/sermons/the-god-of-peace-will-soon-crush-satan-under-your-feet)
A few minutes before the services started, the church people were sitting in their pews and talking. Suddenly, Satan appeared at the front of the church. Everyone started screaming and running for the front entrance, trampling each other in a frantic effort to get away from the evil one. Soon everyone had exited the church except for one elderly gentleman who sat calmly in his pew without moving, unconcerned to the fact that the devil was in his presence. So Satan walked up to the old man and said, “Don’t you know who I am?” The man replied, “Yep, your Satan.” “Aren’t you afraid of me?” Satan asked. “No, sure ain’t” said the man. “Don’t you realize what I can do to you?” asked Satan. “I know what you can do to me,” replied the old man. “And you’re still not afraid?” asked Satan. “Nope.” A little perturbed, Satan asked, “Well, why aren’t you afraid of me?” The man calmly replied, “Well, I’ve been married to your sister for over 48 years.”
We need to have a healthy respect and understanding of the Devil. Just come through a season where the things of evil including the devil are minimized and made fun of. Satan is pictured in red with horns on his head, a tail and a pitch fork.
Up until now in the book of Romans, Paul has never mentioned the devil (except indirectly in passing in Romans 8:38 where he said that neither “angels or demons” can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord). Paul mentions the devil or Satan several places in his other letters but in Romans this is the only thing about him. In view of how much he talks about salvation in chapter 1-8 the silence about Satan should caution us against making too much of the devil in how we conduct the fight of faith.
Those who think of all struggles in terms of conflicts with the devil to be fought in face to face combat must wonder how Paul could write 15 chapters about salvation and Christian living and not mention Satan. Paul’s silence about him in Romans does not mean that Satan is insignificant, or that he is of little concern. However, it does mean that we deal with Satan mainly indirectly rather than keeping him in our mind and going toe to toe with him.
When Paul finally mentions the devil in Romans 16:20, he has one thing to say about him. To use the words of Martin Luther, “The Prince of Darkness grim, We tremble not for him; His rage we can endure, for lo, his doom is sure; one little word shall fell him..” Satan is doomed.
In context Paul is talking about false teachers and those who cause trouble in vs. 17-19. The connection is that Satan is ultimate source of all lies and false doctrines. Paul does not hesitate to say that false teachers and those who cause divisions are under influence of Satan. Paul’s promise is that if we follow his instructions in vs. 17-19, Satan will not entice us with false doctrine but will instead be defeated by the power of God and the power of his truth.
We are warned here to not get involved with the works of Satan, because “lo his doom is sure.” We need to be encouraged to press on in our battle against all that is false and destructive because the Father of all lies and destruction will be destroyed. Vs. 20 is a glorious promise about the triumph of the church over Satan.
Take step back and get the larger picture: “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.”” Genesis 3:15, NIV. Jesus came to fulfill that promise. “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.” 1 John 3:8, NIV.
Thesis: Satan has been defeated (past), Satan is being defeated (present), and Satan will be defeated (future)
Satan has been defeated (past)
The biggest defeat Satan has suffered is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ
“having cancelled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” Colossians 2:14, 15, NIV.
Now the devil can rage against us, but he cannot condemn. “Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died--more than that, who was raised to life--is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.” Romans 8:33, 34, NIV.