Judgment before the accusers
Acts 23:35 -
I will hear thee, said he, when thine accusers are also come. And he commanded him to be kept in Herod's judgment hall.
Ever since I started to take interest in Apologetics (a field in Bible study which means 'speaking in defence of the faith'), I found it easier to debate with people with regards to defending one's faith.
There are some simple principles we learn to use here which many of us know, but do not apply when we debate with people of other beliefs to defend our faith. For example - one is innocent unless proved guilty and only an insane judge would announce all as criminals unless proven innocent. When we apply this to people's accusation against the Bible or our faith it puts the ball in their court to give proof that the Bible is corrupted or is not God's Word. Surely we need to study to refute their accusation but it eliminates all the vain and baseless ones and makes them also to get to study to find faults and prove themselves and not just shoot they mouths out.
In today's message we see the governor Felix who was a good man at heart was sitting in judgment over the accusation against Paul, knowing that he was a Roman Felix did not want to take any change of being found at fault so waits for the accusers to be in presence before him and Paul so that their accusations are proved or refuted. He used the most logical approach to the judgment and this same approach is what is used by God on Judgment Day.
God is light and existed from the beginning. When we say God is light it does not mean that God is a lamp or some bulb like how the Quran puts it (the Quran describes God as an actual lamp describing the lamp in detail). When the Bible projects God as light it speaks about the plans of God being light (His plans are revealed through His Word therefore His Word is also referred to as light). The plans of God are always good and made for the one purpose, which is to let all things to prosper like light does. When Satan rebelled against the plans of God he caused darkness to come to existence. God could have easily crushed Satan and the Angels he deceived to follow him by just a word and eliminated the darkness. But God in His great wisdom wanted to prove the beauty of His light and make this correction an example for ever, therefore made a being although same as the Angels but put in the flesh was made lower than the Angels and desired to let His light shine through this little being so as to eliminate the darkness.
Satan like all beings are created by God, leaving for God the Son Who existed within the Father before He was declared. Therefore it is written He existed from the beginning and is identical to the Father in all aspects. Although coming from the Father (a subset) He is as omnipotent as the Father for part (subset) of infinity is also infinite. When God created man, Satan being more able and gifted than even the Angels (for he is a Cherub) saw God's love for man and did not like it, he tried his best to cause man to be destroyed therefore infected man with evil. God being Righteous and Just through His Son and His Spirit let His light shine through mere man so that even though man compared to Satan is like an ant before an elephant, would yet defeat him. The Son did not do this job as God but humbled Himself and does it as man so that the victory would a victory of mankind.
The Greek word 'Satan' means 'adversary' - a person who accuses and holds the accusation against another.
After God allowed Satan and also allowed the Son of Man Jesus Christ to do their work and then sits in judgment. Like in today's scripture here too the accuser is allowed to be present therefore we see Lucifer the Satan would be set free in the last days for God is Just and all He does, He does in Righteousness.
Today the Lord is telling us unless we do not have the plan of God shinning from within us we will stand no change before the accuser, and that is the reason only those who abide by the Word of God as saved on the Judgment Day, for in the Word is the plan of God.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, your Wisdom and Ways are beyond the understanding of any being, yet You make your plans known to man through your Word. Even though You made us lesser than the Angels by putting us in the flesh yet make it possible we have victory over the fallen cherubs. Lord, we pray we abide by your Word and know it is only by your Spirit we can abide by your Word and not by our efforts alone. Fill in us a thirst for more and more of your Spirit...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference Scriptures ]
31 Then the soldiers, as it was commanded them, took Paul, and brought him by night to Antipatris.
32 On the morrow they left the horsemen to go with him, and returned to the castle:
33 Who, when they came to Caesarea, and delivered the epistle to the governor, presented Paul also before him.
34 And when the governor had read the letter, he asked of what province he was. And when he understood that he was of Cilicia;
35 I will hear thee, said he, when thine accusers are also come. And he commanded him to be kept in Herod's judgment hall.
7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
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