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by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Lord’s Day Morning, July 29, 2018

The Lord Jesus Christ was confronted by Satan. Look at Matthew 4:1. It’s on page 997 of the Scofield Study Bible.

“Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted [by] the devil” (Matthew 4:1).

Look up. The first name of Satan given here is “devil.” It translates the Greek word “diabolos” which means “traducer” or “slanderer.” He tempted Jesus so he could “slander Him” if Christ should give in to him. Now look at verse three,

“And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread” (Matthew 4:3).

The second name of Satan here is “the tempter.” It translates the Greek word “pěirazō” which means “tempt” or “test.” Jesus quoted the Bible, Deuteronomy 8:3, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).

Now, the Devil quoted Scripture himself. Shakespeare was right when he said, “the Devil can quote scripture for his purpose.” The Devil quoted Psalm 91:11-12, although he did not quote it accurately. The cults like the Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Mormons quote some Bible verses, but they do not quote them accurately. Jesus answered the Devil accurately,

“Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God,” Deuteronomy 6:16 (Matthew 4:7).

Then the Devil tested Jesus a third time, that he would give Jesus all the kingdoms of the world if Jesus would worship him. Now look at Matthew 4:10,

“Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve,” quoting Deuteronomy 6:13 and 10:20 (Matthew 4:10).

Dr. J. Vernon McGee said, “The Lord Jesus answered Satan every time out of the Word [the Bible]. The Devil seemed to think [the Bible] gave good answers because in the very next verse we read, ‘Then the devil leaveth him’ (Matthew 4:11)” (J. Vernon McGee, Thru the Bible, notes on Matthew 4:1-11).

Notice in verse ten that Jesus gave a third name of the Devil, “Get thee hence, Satan...” It translates the Greek word, “Satanas,” which means “the accuser.” Jesus was tested to prove He had not broken down. I know that you and I are not as powerful as the Lord Jesus Christ. But we can follow His example and train to be His soldiers and disciples! Notice that Christ answered every temptation by quoting the Bible, the Word of God. He did not say, “Well, I think this or that,” or “Well, I believe there is a better way.” Jesus just quoted the correct Bible verses to answer the Devil. I studied for my Master’s degree at a very liberal, Bible-rejecting seminary. I had to go there because I didn’t have enough money to go to a good seminary like the one John Cagan is attending. But I did learn one thing at that bad seminary. I learned to answer the professors by just quoting the Bible to them. They called me a narrow-minded Fundamentalist. That didn’t bother me at all! I was following Jesus. I was His disciple – not theirs!

That’s why it’s so important for you to come back here and learn the Bible. Don’t run off to some other church or Bible study. The person leading that group may not know the Bible very well, so they will not be able to train you as a disciple of Christ. If you keep coming here, we will teach you the pure Word of God, and have you memorize many key verses. Here is a verse for you to memorize today.

“Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee” (Psalm 119:11).

Now I want you to see from the Bible, the Word of God, where Satan came from. Some of these weak new-evangelicals will tell you it’s not important to know about Satan. But you must know something about the Devil if you want to become a disciple of Christ! Turn to Isaiah 14:12-15. It’s on page 726 of the Scofield Study Bible. Please stand and read it silently while I read it out loud.

“How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. [I will be God!]  Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit” (Isaiah 14:12-15).

You may be seated.

In verse 12 the Devil is called “Lucifer.” Lucifer means “shining light” in Hebrew. Just knowing that the Devil’s name is “shining light” may very well help some of you later. In some cults and Pentecostalist groups people see a “shining light” and they think it is the Holy Spirit. No! No! It is Satan! It is Lucifer! In II Corinthians 11:14, the Bible says, “Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.” When you see a light on someone’s head, it is Satan! It is not God! It is not the Holy Spirit. It is Satan, “transformed into an angel of light.” Today there are popular books that talk about people dying, and going to Heaven, and then coming back to earth. They nearly always talk about seeing a “light” in Heaven. In virtually every case they have been deceived by Satan – they saw Satan and thought it was God! But that is not possible.  Christ told us,

“No man hath seen God at any time” (John 1:18).

If they really saw a “light” it wasn’t God! It was either Lucifer (Satan) or one of his demons! Never God!

Back to Isaiah 14:12. Lucifer did “weaken the nations” when he was cast out of Heaven onto the earth. Lucifer was originally a mighty angel in Heaven. But Lucifer was cast out of Heaven for trying to take the place of Almighty God. Look at Isaiah 14:13-15, as I read it again. Please stand.

“For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit” (Isaiah 14:13-15).

Look at the Scofield note at the bottom of page 726. It says, “Verses 12-14 evidently refer to Satan...This tremendous passage marks the beginning of sin in the universe. When Lucifer said, ‘I will,’ sin began.” Now look at Revelation 12:9. It’s on page 1341 near the end of the Bible. Follow me as I read it.

“And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him” (Revelation 12:9).

The great dragon here is Lucifer, Satan, “that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan.” Most modern scholars say this is another casting out of Satan at the end of the world. This verse helps to explain the same casting out that we read about in Isaiah 14. In either case, that is where Satan came from. We are also told here in verse 9 that “his angels were cast out with him.” These rebellious angels thus became the demons that confronted Jesus in the Bible. There is one other phrase to notice in Revelation 12:9, “Satan, which deceiveth the whole world.”

Although Winston Churchill was not a church-going Christian, he did understand that there was a Devil. Churchill knew the Devil was behind Hitler and the evil forces of Germany in World War II. That is why Churchill knew that he could not make peace with Hitler. Others like Chamberlain, Lord Halifax and the “appeasers” thought they could make a peace pact with Hitler. But Churchill knew that the demonic powers of this world had to be stopped or it would be the end of what Churchill called, “Christian civilization.”

That’s what we must fight as disciples of Christ. My associate, Rev. John Cagan, will preach on our enemy – the Devil – tonight at 6:15. We will have a good, hot meal for you and you will get to hear Pastor John preach. Be sure to come back at 6:15 tonight!

Please stand and sing Luther’s great hymn, “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God.” It’s number one on your song sheet. Please stand and sing it!

A mighty fortress is our God, A bulwark never failing,
   Our helper He, amid the flood Of mortal ills prevailing.
For still our ancient foe Doth seek to work us woe;
   His craft and power are great, And, armed with cruel hate,
On earth is not his equal.

Did we in our own strength confide, Our striving would be losing,
   Were not the right Man on our side, the Man of God’s own choosing.
Dost ask who that may be? Christ Jesus, it is He;
   Lord Sabaoth His name, From age to age the same,
And He must win the battle.
      (“A Mighty Fortress is Our God” by Martin Luther, 1483-1546).

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Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” (by Martin Luther, 1483-1546).