(NOTE: All Scripture verses are taken from the New International Version, unless otherwise stated.)
FOCUS: Tracking Satan’s plans and purpose
KEY SCRIPTURES: Luke22:3-4; John 13:21-27a
“Then Satan entered Judas, called Iscariot, one of the Twelve. And Judas went to the chief priests and officers of the temple guard and discussed with them how he might betray Jesus” (Luke 22:3-4).
“… Jesus was troubled in spirit and testified, ‘I tell you the truth, one of you is going to betray me … It is the one to whom I give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish.’ Then dipping the piece of bread, He gave it to Judas Iscariot, son of Simon. As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him” (John 13:21-27a).
PROPHECY CONNECTIONS IN GENESIS:
Satan’s subtle lies influenced the unfortunate choice made by Eve and Adam “in the beginning” …
Genesis 3 — “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the other animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God REALLY say, “You must not eat from any tree in the garden?”‘
“The woman said to the serpent [Satan in disguise], ‘We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, “You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, OR YOU WILL DIE.” ‘
” ‘You will not surely die,’ the serpent said to the woman. ‘For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’
“When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then they eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as He was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, ‘Where are you?’ [The man] said, ‘I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.’
“And He said, ‘Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree that I commanded you NOT to eat from?’
“The man said, ‘The woman you put here with me — she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.’
“Then the Lord God said to the woman, ‘What is this you have done?’
“The woman said, ‘The serpent deceived me, and I ate.’
“So the Lord God said to the serpent, ‘Because you have done this,
” ‘Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers [Jesus Christ, son of Mary, descendant of Eve]; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.’
“To the woman He said, ‘I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.’
“To Adam He said, ‘Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, “You must NOT eat of it,”
” ‘Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since it was from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.’
“Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the living.
“The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. And the Lord God said, ‘The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.’
“So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. After He drove the man out, He placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cheribim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.”
PROPHECY CONNECTIONS IN LUKE:
Satan tried to influence Jesus with subtle lies …
Luke 4:1-13 — “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, where for forty days He was tempted by the devil [a.k.a. ‘the serpent’ and ‘Satan’]. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them He was hungry.
“The devil said to Him, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.’
“Jesus answered, ‘It is written: “Man does not live on bread alone.” ‘
“The devil led Him up to a high place and showed Him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to Him, ‘I will give you all their authority and splendor, for it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. So if you worship me, it will be yours.’
“Jesus answered, ‘It is written: “Worship the Lord your God and serve Him only.”
“The devil led Him to Jerusalem and had Him stand on the highest point of the temple. ‘If you are the Son of God,’ he said, ‘throw yourself down from here. For it is written: “He will command His angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you us in their hands so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.” ‘
“Jesus answered, ‘It says: Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’
“When the devil had finished all his tempting, he left Him until a more opportune time.”
PROPHECY CONNECTIONS IN REVELATION:
In the future, Satan will tempt a man — like Adam — who is destined for destruction — like Judas — by offering him power and great authority, as he did with Jesus.
Revelation 12:7-12 — “And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon [a.k.a. Satan], and the dragon and his angels fought back. But [the dragon] was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. The great dragon was hurled down, that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. HE WAS HURLED DOWN TO EARTH, and his angels with him.
“Then I [John] heard a loud voice in heaven say: ‘Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of His Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before God day and night, has been hurled down.
” ‘They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb [another name for Jesus] and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them!
” ‘But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows his time is short.’
Revelation 13:1-3 — “And the dragon stood on the shore of the sea.
“And I [John] saw a beast coming out of the sea…. The dragon gave the beast his power and his throne and great authority…. The whole world was astonished and followed the beast.”
BACK TO THE FUTURE: Around 536 B.C., the prophet Daniel was given divine information concerning a future ruler. Daniel 9:27 says: “He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven’ [seven years]. In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.” Scholars believe this is the same man referred to by John as “the beast coming out of the sea.”