The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.Romans 16:20(NASB)
As Paul drew his letter to the Romans to a close, he gave them a very serious warning about the dangers of division in the Church, particularly doctrinal division. He urged the brethren to take note of those in their congregation who were divisive and caused offense, and to avoid them. So often, those that are standing firm in the faith are attacked in this way by the enemy of our soul, who seductively twists the truth through a false teacher or someone who is not standing firm in the truth.
Paul cautioned, that those who spread this sort of disunity in the body were often smooth talkers, who use flattering speech and introduce persuasive doctrines into the church. They deceive the heart of young, inexperienced believers, who love the Lord, by weaving error in with the truth, and they disrupt the unity of the spirit and the bond of peace, within the Body of Christ. He warned that these deceivers could cause serious issues if their deception was not identified and addressed, or if they were allowed to continue down their destructive path.
To keep the Christians safe and to maintain pure doctrine, Paul urged the believers in Rome to become increasingly vigilant in doing what is right and to develop an innocence and simplicity towards that which is evil. He assured them that if they remain obedient to the pure gospel of Christ, then "the God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet." He then concluded with a lovely prayer, "The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you."
While Satan often comes to attack God's people like a roaring lion, seeking whom he can devour, he seems to be more effective when he dons the garb of an angel of light and comes into a congregation with seducing doctrines of demons that are divisive and offensive to the Lord, but which, too often, pull in unsuspecting believers who desire greater illumination through ungodly means - even deceiving some that have embraced sound doctrine.
In the beginning, it was Satan who caused man to sin and the God who brings peace, pronounced that the Seed of the woman would crush the head of that old serpent - who is called the devil and Satan. Christ defeated sin, Satan, death, and hell at the Cross, but following the birth of the Church, Paul explained that very soon, He will crush Satan under their feet. God, Whose Holy Spirit indwells all believers, will use the prayers, praises, ministry, and life of the saints to finish His good work in the destruction of evil.
While Jesus won the victory over Satan at the Cross, God in His grace is using the Church - which is the Body of Christ on earth today, to carry forward His plans and purposes, through spiritual warfare - for the weapons of our warfare are not physical, but spiritual. They are mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds. And while Satan will not be ultimately defeated, until he is flung into the bottomless pit, God is graciously working through the Church toward that end.
It appears that Paul's warning against being enticed into ungodly teachings, unbiblical illumination, satanic spirituality, and repackaged philosophies is the way that Satan sought to infiltrate the early Church - and it continues to happen in Christendom today. May we be alert to the wiles of the devil and submit to the leading and guidance of the Holy Spirit so that God can use us in this battle of the ages.
May we take to heart Paul's serious warning about the dangers of division in the Church, and in the power of the Holy Spirit, be ready to identify and challenge any divisive doctrine and satanic practices that are seductively packaged, in order to twist the truth and even deceive the saints.
Dear Lord and Heavenly Father, keep me from Satan's evil activities that are designed to shipwreck the faith in Your people, and keep me ever under Your sovereign authority, influence, and peace. Thank You that despite the enemy's deceit and trickery, Satan is a defeated enemy who has no authority over my life, because Christ won the battle at Calvary. Frustrate the wicked wiles of the devil, and expose those false teachers, who are leading so many of Your people astray. May the grace of the Lord Jesus, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all, this day and forevermore, AMEN.