Revelation Reveals the Hidden Ways We Can Be Trapped by Evil!

When we study the Bible, we create a space for God to speak to us and introduce us to new thoughts that we may have never previously considered. Yesterday’s blog article did that for me.

In the past, I viewed the demonic torments in Revelation as excessive punishment from God. Yesterday, I realized that God has been holding back the full force of evil that the devil and his demons want to inflict on humans.

The woes we read about in Revelation are the result of God allowing evil spirits to do what they have always wanted to do.

Before considering the next trumpet judgments, I want to explore how we may align our lives with demons without realizing it. Here are some examples.

(1) When we lie, we participate in a significant character trait of Satan.

Jesus said this about Satan, “When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8.44).

(2) If we compromise our faith in Christ and join behaviors that are contrary to his teachings with our friends or co-workers, we may be aligning ourselves with the demonic.

This was the situation in Corinth when they ate meals at pagan temples for friendship and business opportunities.

Paul wrote, “I do not want you to be partners with demons” (1 Corinthians 10.20).

(3) At a Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), someone rolled in what looked like a golden statue of President Trump. That is an extreme example of a common practice of giving political leaders more influence than they are due.

Our nation spent 8.9 billion dollars during the 2022 election cycle. I wonder if the American church received offerings that approached that figure?

Revelation shows how the identification of the Roman emperor Domitian with the Greek God Apollo had demonic power at its root.

John wrote that the “king over them is the angel of the bottomless pit; his name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek he is called Apollyon” (Revelation 9.11).

Apollyon is another form of Apollo. Domitian required his subjects’ worship, but the power behind his throne was a destructive demon.

If we give devotion to political or governmental power, we run the risk of being captured by a fierce demonic power.

We should take into consideration all three of these examples from yesterday’s article. Jesus alone deserves our trust and devotion. Everything else should be secondary.

Let’s remember that the agenda of the devil is to “steal, kill, and destroy” human life (John 10.10).

I believe it is more important for us to take the message of Revelation as a general warning to be fully devoted to Christ than it is to gain a technical understanding of the times and events presented in the book.

Demonic Forces Unleashed

God has hindered the destructive work of the devil, but in the end times, more intense demonic activity will be permitted.

The first woe has passed. There are still two woes to come.

Then the sixth angel blew his trumpet, and I heard a voice from the horns of the golden altar before God,

Saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great River Euphrates.”

So the four angels were released, who had been held ready for the hour, the day, the month, and the year, to kill a third of humankind (Revelation 9.12-15).

The vision shows how God judges a corrupt civilization by allowing demonic forces to do what they have always wanted to do to humans, but were prevented by God’s gracious protection.

Verses 16-18 describe the awful nature of the demonic forces humans will encounter. One-third of humanity will be destroyed by these evil beings.

We remember Peter’s words that God is “not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance” (2 Peter 3.9).

God reveals the intentions of demonic forces so we will turn away from any engagement that is directed by them.

God permits the demons to unleash their horror on unbelievers to bring about their repentance.

No Repentance

The unfortunate message of verses 20-21 is that the unspeakable events of these woes do not result in repentance.

The rest of humankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands or give up worshiping demons and idols of gold and silver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk (Revelation 9.20).

Their heart is set in such hostility toward God that these events don’t persuade them to repent. They continue in idol worship.

And they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their prostitution or their thefts (Revelation 9.21).

Idol worship produces behavior that imitates the idols we serve.

Richard Foster identifies money, sex, and power as the three most prominent idols of American culture.

What kind of harm has the money “god” brought to humanity?

What sort of pain has the glorification of sex caused?

What amount of grief has the worship of power brought to society?

Let’s learn from the woes of Revelation 9 and determine to serve the One True God and him alone.

YouTube Video

Rudy Ross and I discuss this passage on YouTube today. It is on the Bob Spradling channel.

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