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Doctrines of Demons, false teachers, and other foolishness. Revelation 3:9

As I mentioned in a previous post, involving yourself with incompetent Bible studies can give you a constant supply of fresh material. In this case, the self-appointed group leader of the morning coffee shop crowd opened with, “I have put several hours into this study of demons, and I believe we need to pursue this theme today.” He continued, there are demons all around us, and it is getting worse.
I feel I need to say; I understand there are demons. I believe they are fallen angels, and I also believe that they have arisen in greater numbers in these last days. We, who follow scripture, are aware that there are four awaiting their release from the Euphrates river in the last days, and they will do substantial and fearful damage. But, this is not them, yet. Satan is not producing more; however, I think that he has recruited people, in many cases, to help him. Is it possible that some of these fallen angels have been held in reserve, maybe? If not, they are no longer holding anything back.
An example of what I speak of could be found in one of my grandsons. This child seemed to be rather ordinary as a toddler. His older brother began to be somewhat relentless in what he thought was spirited humor, and now we are dealing with behaviors that appear to be demonic.
Why say that? To answer that question you need to consider some of Jesus encounters.
With the mad men from Gergesenes. A story you can find in Matthew 8, we find two who would
English: Site of Gadara (Umm Qais), Jordan Fra...
English: Site of Gadara (Umm Qais), Jordan Français : Vue du site de Gadara (Umm Qeis) en Jordanie (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
not allow others to pass anywhere near them. Jesus cast the demons out of them and into the swine that were nearby. (This of course ruined a small economy and prompted them to ask Jesus to leave.) Mark's gospel records a single mad man in the Gadara region, who had been bound on several occasions with no success. It is possible that this is the same story as the first for Jesus also cast the demons into the swine. In Matthew 9:32,33 we see the demons preventing a man from being able to speak. One more and I will move on. Both Matthew 17:15, and Mark 9:22, we see a father bringing his son to Jesus seeking relief because demons were throwing his boy into the fire and water.
What are the commonalities:
  • Irrational behavior
  • Irrational anger
  • Tremendous strength
  • Inability to speak
  • Diseases
These things can be found in people around us on a daily basis. What if, we have been trying to treat demonic infestations with drugs that merely sedate you?
Ask yourself, did Jesus approach these situations with fear? Not at all, and neither should we. Sadly we will though if we are not prepared to address the situations when they arise.
The leader asked us to first read Revelation 3:9.
Revelation 3:9 NASB 'Behold, I will cause those of the synagogue of Satan, who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie--I will make them come and bow down at your feet, and make them know that I have loved you.
From this verse, he concluded that Satan has a church. I can tell you that my immediate reaction was a heavy sigh, as I knew there were some there, that will not read their Bibles for themselves, and therefore be taken in by this garbage, especially since he claims to have been a pastor previously.
While most would agree that there is a Satanist church among us today, there was nothing so blatant at the time of John's writing. Therefore, to call this, a Satanist church is clear false teaching. The leader asked the group what they thought of this assertion, to which several of us quickly offered opposing thoughts on the subject.
What do you use to debunk such a statement? The primary response is context.
The NASB categorizes this section of the Bible (Revelation 3:7-13) as being addressed to the “church” in Philadelphia. Because we Westernize the Bible, we take this concept of the church to be the building in which we converted Gentiles gather and that was not the case. While Peter was the one who initially got the invitation to take the message to the Gentiles, he did not follow through wholeheartedly, and therefore we eventually see the former Pharisee Saul, turned Paul, take the message to the Gentiles. The Apostle John, it would seem, did not waste his time on Gentiles, focusing on showing Jews this Messiah they had found. Fortunately, God extended His grace and mercy toward us Gentiles, and we learn of this through Paul's writings.
So, it is a logical assumption that the Revelation was written to the Jewish community. This hypothesis is evidenced by the usage of the term synagogue, which would have been Jewish with minor exceptions; the exceptions would have been converts to Judaism. While not evidence, religious teachers/pastors will tell you outrageous things like the Revelation is written in code to prevent the Roman occupying forces from finding out what God's plans were and therefore prevent an early demise for the church body. This code idea is not the case, for the book of Revelation was intended to be read and understood. Since we are now living at the time of its revealing it would be wise to comprehend what is going on around us.
So what is the purpose of John's usage of the phrase “synagogue of Satan”?
It was an analogy designed to grab attention. It also establishes a divine power or deity
Do not make the immediate assumption that this implies God.
  1. A spirit being inferior to God.
  2. Evil spirits messengers, or ministers of the devil.
The KJC translates daimonion as devil 59x and god 1x.
be partakers” - Greek, metechō. Strong's defines it as: to share or participate; by implication belong to, eat (or drink): - take part in an established prophetic pattern, and, John knew too well that the analogies he was using were familiar, scriptural terms.
Because several of us balked at the leader's opening comments he quickly moved on to the next point he wanted to make, and here is where he directed us to look at 1Corinthians 10:21.
1 Corinthians 10:21 NASB 21) You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons.
He quickly tried to make assertions about this passage by saying, “see here, even the demons have a cup of communion.” While that might be true in some twisted sense, it is not even close to what is being said here. A good deal of the time digging a bit deeper into the sentence can help you understand what the Holy Spirit is trying to say. Watch as I take a simplistic approach.
On my first approach, I see two differing assertions: “You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons.” This theme is reiterated using an analogy to “the table of the Lord,” which we understand as communion. Since the idea of communion carries great depth and signifies the joining of ourselves into the life and death of Jesus Christ through the symbolic partaking of His body and blood when we eat the bread, whatever form that comes in, and drink the dark red grape juice, which represents His blood. Having retold the act of communion in this manner, I am suddenly and intensely aware that our act of “drinking the cup of the Lord” from the “table of the Lord” is a serious commitment on our part. There is nothing about our simple monotonous routine, at least that is the way we act when taking communion, that would show the world the commitment we have to this life in Christ; unless of course, we are not serious.
The other approach is to look at the words Paul used.
drink” – the Greek word is pinō.
  • Thayer's definitions tell us that the word means: “ figuratively, to receive into the soul what serves to refresh strengthen, nourish it.”
    Strong's concordance adds: to imbibe (literally or figuratively)
the cup” - Again from Thayer:
  1. cup, a drinking vessel
  2. metaphorically one’s lot or experience, whether joyous or adverse,
We understand the cup to mean, that which belongs to.
of the Lord” - Greek: Kyrios, meaning to whom a person or thing belongs
of devils” - Greek is daimonion
  1. divine power or deity
    Do not make the immediate assumption that this implies God.
  2. A spirit being inferior to God.
  3. Evil spirits messengers, or ministers of the devil.
The KJC translates daimonion as devil 59x and god 1x.
be partakers” - Greek, metechō. Strong's defines it as: to share or participate; by implication belong to, eat (or drink): - take part in.
If I consider the depth in these words, I see a context that has little to do with a cup of communion as much as it has to do with persons who are imbibing in the things of the world, while trying to keep their toes in the waters of the kingdom of God.
Why would that be a problem? It would seem that a love of the world displaces the love of and for the Father, and encompasses everything.
1 John 2:15-16 NASB Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.
You should know what God calls this attempt at a balancing act, being lukewarm. You have no passion for anything. This is stated clearly in Revelation chapter 3.
Revelation 3:15-18 CJB "I know what you are doing: you are neither cold nor hot. How I wish you were either one or the other! 16) So, because you are lukewarm, neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of my mouth! 17) For you keep saying, 'I am rich, I have gotten rich, I don't need a thing!' You don't know that you are the one who is wretched, pitiable, poor, blind and naked! 18) My advice to you is to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich; and white clothing, so that you may be dressed and not have to be ashamed of your nakedness; and eye-salve to rub on your eyes, so that you may see.
But we are not directly talking about love here, are we? We are talking about imbibing, and we naively think this is merely taking a little sip now and then. However, the Greek conveys someone who is gaining their experience, whether joyous or adverse from their indulgences. Not only that, the implication is, they belong to the things to which they have indulged. Since the idea of imbibing is frequently associated with drinking, then you must know that you rarely see anyone “imbibing” with restraint. Since those that drink usually have the goal of inebriation whether partial or wholehearted. These partakers are not just foolishly sipping, they are wholeheartedly indulging in a world that sets itself against God.
Now don't get me wrong, there are demons, which I believe are fallen angels, all around us. I don't have to go looking for them as these fallen angels seem to have a determined purpose of killing or disrupting the lives of those who look like Christ; that happens when you accept Him and make Him a part of your life. The demons also seem to have the generalized job of disrupting God's plan for the salvation of man. These attempts at disruption, unfortunately, impact the lives of innocent children and adults.
Some would see this picture I have painted, as a hopeless and impossible life to live. It is, however, the opposite, for we are endowed with power; which is the life of Christ and His infinite power. We have been given a hope of a life filled with peace, as well as a love we have never experienced here on this earth; and, He has given us authority over the defeated foe, called Satan, through the name of our risen King, Jesus. Merely having this knowledge and accepting it gives me the reason to keep my feet out of the mire that is called the world, and walk through this land as a prophet and warrior king. I pray that this becomes your reality in Jesus name.


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