War at Calvary
Jesus spoiled the devil's kingdom, made an open show of him, and triumphed over him on the cross. There was war at Calvary. Consider Him defeating that diabolical fiend by redeeming us from God's claim of death against us due to Satan.
And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.
And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon;
and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
- What happened on the cross? Jesus spoiled Satan and his princely kingdom by taking us as spoil; Jesus disgraced the devil and his angels openly; Jesus triumphed over the devil’s armies in the cross.
- This past Monday was America’s Memorial Day, and we thank God for the 1.3 million who had their lives ripped from them to defend our nation and its liberties, but Calvary and its outcome is far greater.
- Russia invaded Ukraine 100 days ago that has America fearful and funding much of the war, though it is a minor conflict compared to the war occurring at Calvary 2000 years ago for our eternal freedom.
- War is terrible – William Sherman wrote Atlanta’s mayor, “War is cruelty and you cannot refine it” – it is the ultimate combination of cruelty, destruction, fury, and violence; and it was all this at Calvary.
- It is communion Sunday for our church, and it is our duty and privilege to passionately remember Him Who died for us, and for this particular communion we want to remember the spiritual war He fought.
- Most think only of physical suffering, but total war also included psychological, spiritual, and divine.
- This sermon is very short and superficial to what could be said about the adversaries and their conflict.
- Never for a minute think the conflict was a calamity for God or Jesus, it had been determined for you.
- For more information or greater detail, see the links at the bottom for further study of this great war.
OPPONENTS IN WAR
- Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of God, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham (Matt 1:1).
- He was a man with a full human nature and subject to all the temptations we face.
- He was sent by God to pay for our sins and deliver us from the devil we had chosen.
- Satan also called the Devil and that old serpent from his first sighting in Garden of Eden.
- He is by the evidence of scripture the highest angel (Jude 1:9), thus an archangel.
- The rest of the fallen angels of varying authority and ability all report to this devil.
- From deceiving Eve, to crushing Job, to tempting David and Peter, etc., he is strong.
- He can easily take you captive at his will, and you cannot deliver yourself from him.
- He brought the curse of death on us, so you will spend eternity in torment with him.
- He is called Abaddon (Hebrew) and Apollyon (Greek) – the destroyer (Rev 9:11).
- We know from the book of Daniel that angels are involved in world wars (Da 10:13).
- He possessed and directed Jews and Romans in the violent abuse of our Lord Jesus.
- Every act of violence and death and every lie and confusion among men is his work.
- Jesus and Satan went head to head; His angels stood down; Satan used all of his.
PLACE OF WAR
- Calvary in Latin (Luke 23:33); Golgotha in Hebrew (Matt 27:33; Mark 15:22; Jn 19:17).
- Both mean the same thing – the place of a skull – Rome’s place of public execution.
PROPHECY OF WAR
- God told Satan in Eden that a man from the woman would conquer him (Genesis 3:15).
- David wrote about the crucifixion and Satan as a dog and lion (Ps 22:19-21; I Pet 5:8).
- Jesus declared that He was and would raid the devil’s palace for us (Luke 11:20-22).
- Could Satan, like he had done in the wilderness, get Jesus to compromise at the cross?
THE INVISIBLE WAR
- Spirits are invisible; both angels and devils are spirits, thus invisible unless given forms.
- Angels and devils are at war (Dan 10:20); we are at war against these devils (Eph 6:12).
- If we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, what did Jesus wrestle against? The devils!
- Note what Satan did to Job, David, Joshua, the Gadarene, Judas, Peter, Ananias, etc.
- His devils are the most unified and efficient hostile force in the universe (Matt 12:26).
- As soon as Jesus was born, Satan was there to devour Him (Rev 12:1-5; Matthew 2:16).
- The Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness to engage this diabolical fiend (Matt 4:1-11).
JESUS REFERS TO THE WAR
- Jesus knew the war with Satan was coming and told His apostles about it (John 14:30).
- Jesus said His death – occurring at Calvary – would cast Satan out (John 12:31; 16:11).
- When on trial for His life, Jesus described the power of darkness working (Luke 22:53).
APOSTLES REFER TO THE WAR
- Paul described our Lord’s nature and intent to destroy Satan’s death grip (Heb 2:13-14).
- John wrote of the same thing – that Jesus came to destroy Satan’s death (I John 3:8).
THE MOTIVES OF THE WAR
- The devil fights vainly in sinful rebellion and hatred of God, His Son, and His children.
- Consider his diabolical confusion – he took Adam down in just seconds through Eve.
- He has hardly ever had a problem with our race, who fall to his wiles rather easily.
- How can he, the greatest angel, be defeated by a flesh and blood man? Impossible!
- In Satan’s confusion is our glory and pleasure in the Man Christ Jesus. Hallelujah!
- Jesus fought to win for the glory of His Father and for the safety of His seed (Is 53:10).
- His intercessory prayer to the Father just before His arrest is very glorious (John 17).
- Women through the curse of childbearing were given a mighty Savior (I Tim 2:15).
THE RESULTS OF THE WAR
- Jesus spoiled Satan and his kingdom by taking us as spoil; Jesus disgraced the devil and his angels openly; Jesus triumphed over the devil’s armies in the cross (Col 2:15).
- The sun went dark! A thief worshipped Him! The rocks rent! Graves opened! The veil was torn open! The centurion and others worshipped Him! He rose again! Many dead saints rose and went into Jerusalem! He proved He was alive by many infallible proofs!
- Jesus by substitutionary death for us saved us from Satan’s work in Eden (Rom 6:23).
- Jesus raided the kingdom of the devil and put us into His (Luke 11:20-22; Col 1:13).
- Satan was bound from deceiving nations, and the gospel was irresistible (Matt 16:18).
- The gospel shone brightly in Satan’s previous dark world (II Cor 4:3-7; Acts 26:16-18).
- When Jesus ascended into heaven, the devil was thrown out after war (Rev 12:7-10).
- You the willing stooge of the devil, were quickened into life after your sins (Col 2:13).
- Jesus is now far above all angels – holy and fallen – for us the church (Eph 1:20-23).
- So complete and thorough is the victory that the devil will flee from us (James 4:7).
- The devil will be cast into the lake of fire, and we will help do it (Matt 25:41; I Cor 6:3).
- We will soon trample him under our feet for our relationship with Jesus (Rom 16:20)
1. Today is Communion Sunday, and it is our high pleasure and privilege to honor His death.
2. This diabolical and spiritual enemy was way too much for you (think Eden), but he is defeated.
3. Hell was prepared for the devil and his angels, and he had you reserved for it, but for our Jesus!
4. How will you live for Him that died for you? Paul was zealous to repay Him (II Cor 5:14-15).
5. Remember one of the results of Calvary – the devil will flee you, if you resist Him (Jas 4:7).
For Further Study:
- Triumph of Jesus Christ (2012) … here.
- Seed of the Woman (2009) … here.
- The Stronger Man (2004) … here.
- Exposition of Colossians 2:15 (2003) … here.
- The Cup of Christ (2018) … here.
- The Glory of the Cross (2014) … here.
- Exposition of Psalm 22 (2001) … here.
- Slide Exposition of Isaiah 53 (2020) … here.
- Sermon Exposition of Isaiah 53 (2002) … here.
- He Ascended Up On High (2016) … here.
- The Spoils of the Cross (2021) … here.
- The Transcendent Cross (2015) … here.
- The Cross at Judgment Day (2018) … here.
- War for Your Soul (2021) … here.
- Give No Place to the Devil (2000) … here.
- The Power of Darkness (2003) … here.