June 08, 2010

Crushing Grace

Genesis 3:1-15

The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.
Romans 16:20


No one likes a bully. But the ancient meaning of bully was “a fine chap.” The infernal bully Satan was originally “a fine chap.” One of the highest ranked angels, he grasped for more power and toppled off his pedestal. Unfortunately for humanity he landed in a garden where he continued his career as a bully: “one who is cruel to others who are weaker.”

Job was a victim of Satan’s attacks (Job 1-2). King David fell to Satan’s trickery (1 Chronicles 21:1). We are all his targets. Peter, warned by Jesus that Satan wanted to sift him like wheat (Luke 22:31), warns us: “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). Hardly the work of “a fine chap.”

Praise God that when Eve pointed her accusing finger at the serpent, God told him that her offspring, Jesus Christ, would crush his head. Though Satan is a bully, Paul encourages believers by saying, “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” As Peter, after falling away and being restored again, promises, “The God of all grace … will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast” (1 Peter 5:10). Or as the Lord told Paul when he begged to be relieved of a “thorn” that bothered him, “My grace is sufficient for you” (2 Corinthians 12:9).

God of abounding grace, we thank you today for your powerful, crushing grace. Keep us alert to our enemy and alive to your Spirit. Through Jesus Christ, Amen.

About the author — Dale Vander Veen

Dale Vander Veen is a retired Christian Reformed pastor who with his wife, Edith, has ministered in California, Washington, and Michigan. They have three married children and six grandchildren. He currently writes a daily e-mail series of devotions.

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