Tony Evans - Silencing The Accuser
The evil one has stood at the door of your life and my life, and he has one overriding purpose, and that is to block God's purpose for you. He wants to stop God's preordained design for your life from you ever experiencing it, or if you do experience it, it will be through much trial and turmoil and difficulty. He stands at the door of your existence to make sure that what has been written in your book is not experienced. As part of his design, he wants you to have sicknesses that were outside of God's will. He wants you to have discouragement that is outside of God's will. He wants you to have pain and relational breakdown that is outside of God's will, and if he gets his full way, he wants to take you to an early grave. Because his goal is to deny you what's written in your book.
Now, in previous sermons we've looked at the fact that every Christian has a book, a book that has outlined God's kingdom purpose for your life. It has been recorded. He wants to block entrance to that experience. Now, do not misunderstand me. Every sickness, every disappointment, every difficulty, and every death is not outside of God's will. But some sicknesses, some disappointments, some struggles, and some deaths are outside of his will, that is, outside of his desired will, because they've been interfered with by Satan's ability to block God's purposes. But the good news today is that you can silence the accuser. To whatever degree he is bringing havoc into your life, God has come up with a legislative mechanism, a legal right that you have in order to keep him from robbing you of God's will, God's purpose, God's plan.
We find in the book of Revelation this statement about a war in heaven. This goes back to our original concept of the angelic conflicts that the battle of angels up there affect us down here. We see that Satan is removed in the tribulation. Let me perhaps give an explanation. Satan, when Adam fell, was kicked out of heaven to earth, but he still had access to heaven. In the book of Revelation, he loses access to heaven. But now he still has access. In fact, next week, we're actually gonna go into a courtroom and see how a trial plays out, and you gonna be on the witness stand 'cause there's an actual trial taking place in scripture that will take us deeper than time will allow us to go today.
So it's time for you to go to court. But let's look at the principle. There is this spiritual battle, and we're told who is the dragon, verse 9, who's called the devil, who's called Satan, he's the adversary. And his job is to keep you from experiencing what God has done, and he tells you his methodology, "Who deceives", verse 9, "the whole world". If you're here, you're in the world. If you're here, that means you're subject to deception. You and I are living in a day of mass deception. God has written a book, he's laid it out. This is my kingdom purpose for you that you are to work out. Philippians 2:12 and 13, "That we might work out," it says, "His will or his purpose".
So you were created for God's purpose, you were redeemed for God's purpose, and everything is to be designed because Psalm 40 verse 7 and 8, there is a book, and that book is to fulfill his will. So, Satan's job is to block that will from entering into the university of your life, becoming your experience. When he tricks you, me, us, individually, in our families, with our mates, with our children, with our coworkers, with fellow saints, when he can manipulate and twist you, then he accuses you of what he tricks you into. He is the accuser of the brethren, and he accuses them before our God day and night.
This is a legal term. Accusing is a legal term. It has to do with a complainant in a lawsuit because Satan seeks to defeat us legally. To accuse is to be a complainant in a lawsuit, and he does it for the whole world. For non-Christians, he wants them to keep them from becoming Christians, for Christians he wants them to keep them from fulfilling God's plan for their lives during their time on earth. But we hear in verse 11, "And they overcame him".
Now, in order to be an overcomer, you gotta have something to overcome. And in this case, you are overcoming a suit by Satan against you. He goes to the court of heaven and he says you can't do this for this person, or that person, or for their family, or for their even community, or for their... you can't do that because look at the crimes they have committed, even though I'm the one who tricked them to commit it, look at the crimes that they have committed, which is against your righteous standard, so your purpose cannot be filled without you compromising your righteousness. Because Satan knows more about God than many of his children do, that God's standards are the governance by which he makes decisions. It's his laws, his rules. So the accuser comes in order to block God's plan, God's progress through legal accusation in the presence of God, but they overcame him. To overcome is to prevail against one's adversary, opposition, or circumstances. It is to prevail against or over or through.
So what I want to tell you is how you overcome, how you silence the accuser in the courtroom of heaven. He lists three things, "And they overcame him," number one, "Because of the blood of the Lamb". So let me talk about the blood, since that's the first thing that silences Satan when he's accusing you by name in court. The first thing you need to know is the blood talks. We're talking about speaking blood. If you don't believe me, look at chapter 12 of Hebrews verse 24 where we ended last time of the book of Hebrews. 'Cause you need to understand what this blood is doing, that is, what the sacrifice of Christ is currently accomplishing. He says, "And to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel". Did you hear that? "The blood that speaks better than the blood of Abel".
Well, wait a minute now, when you look at chapter 11, we find out about Abel's blood speaking, 'cause that's the comparison. He says in verse 4 of Hebrews 11, "By faith Abel offered a better sacrifice than Cain through which he obtained a testimony that he was righteous. God testifying of his gifts and that through faith, though he is dead, he still speaks". He says, "The blood of Jesus," in verse 24 chapter 12, "Of the new covenant speaks, and it's better than the blood of Abel". So if it's better than the blood of Abel, what did Abel's blood say that Jesus's blood is better than?
So the blood of Abel spoke judgment on his brother Cain. God listened to what Abel was saying in heaven and brought judgment on earth to Cain. So the blood is so powerful 'cause Jesus's blood is better than Abel's blood. It's so powerful, don't you know he can stop folk who messing with you? Don't you know he can overrule folks who are trying to overrule you? In fact, it's so much better than Cain's that God can even say in the courtroom to the devil, "You are overruled right now, sit down and shut up". Because it is a blood that speaks, it forgives, it protects, it delivers, it empowers, that is what the blood does. The blood is not some chemical formula in the body of Jesus, it is the power of the sacrifice of Jesus operating today for believers who are operating in sync with the blood, 'cause the blood talks.
Okay, let me give you another illustration. In Exodus chapter 12, it was the Passover. God was going to take the life of every firstborn Egyptian, but he told the Jews, "I want you to slay an animal and shed their blood. Put the blood on the doorpost of your house. When the death angel flies over and he sees the blood, he will pass over you". In other words, "What's happening to them is not gonna happen to you, but I gotta see the blood". In other words, "I've gotta see the identification of the sacrifice. If I don't see Jesus on you, I don't see the blood, and if I don't see the blood, you won't have power in the court".
You see, for a lot of us, God don't see no Jesus, therefore he can't respect no blood, because the blood refers to the sacrificial life and work of Jesus Christ. It refers to the work of the cross. To help you theologically with this a little bit deeper, in the book of Colossians chapter 1 and chapter 2, I just wanna read a couple of verses. In chapter 1 he says in verse 13, "For he rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom," that's why I love the word kingdom. "Kingdom of his beloved Son," that's Jesus Christ.
Now go to chapter 2. He says in chapter 2 of the book of Colossians, "When you," verse 13, "Were dead in your transgressions and uncircumcised in your flesh, he made you alive together with him having forgiven us all our transgressions, having," here it is, "Canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees," all legal language, "Against us, which was hostile to us, and he has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. And when he nailed the decrees of things against you," that is all the infractions against the law of God that Satan can write up, he did this, he did that, they did this, they did that.
He says, "He canceled all the decrees, the legal accusations against you," watch this, when did he do this? Verse 15, "When he disarmed the rulers, authorities, and made public display of them, having triumphed over them through him". Watch this now, the cross, the blood has canceled out the decrees against you, and the reason he can do this is he says, "He disarmed the rulers and powers that are gonna come up against you".
Number two, in Revelation 12 he says, first of all, that the blood was what they used to overcome him. Then they said, "Because of the word of their testimony". We got another legal term. What do you do in court? You testify. When Jesus was tempted by the devil, guess what he did? He quoted scriptures to the devil. He said, "It is written, it is written, it is written," 'cause God likes baseball, three strikes you're out. He quoted three times, and it says, "And the devil left him," because he's allergic to scripture, he's allergic to spiritual truth. You must give testimony to what God says in order for you to have authority in the courtroom. You won't have authority giving human testimony, human perspective, man's point of view, what Paul calls human wisdom.
In Numbers 13 verses 25 to 32, that whole section in there, when they were getting ready to go into the Promised Land, okay, they sent 12 spies in, right? Twelve spies in, and the purpose for going in wasn't determined whether we were gonna take the Promised Land, God had already told 'em, you're gonna have the Promised Land. The purpose of them going in was to spy out the plan for taking the Promised Land, not the fact of taking the Promised Land. So now these 12 grown men, grown men came back, you know, and Moses says, "Okay, what's the plan"? Ten men said, "We can't do this. We can't do this". Now that's not what God said. God said, "No, you gonna do this". But they went in a human opinion, and they went in a human opinion by looking at the circumstances. They said, "There're giants in the land, and we are like grasshoppers".
Now they called themselves grasshoppers, okay? They gave their own self-analysis. "We can't do this, there's giants in the land". Joshua and Caleb said, "What y'all talking about? God has given us this land, let's go do what God says to do". That's why you don't always vote on majority opinion. You want biblical opinion, biblical truth. So two stood with God, ten dealt with what they could see with their own physical eyes, and guess what? They cost people 40 years of their life. Forty years wandering in the wilderness, never having gotten to what was written in their book. What was written in their book was that they were going to enjoy the Promised Land. God had already set it up, they were gonna enjoy it, but they didn't get to their book, and they died in the wilderness outside of God's plan.
Did you know you can die outside of God's plan? God's plan may be for you to live to be 80, and you can die at 50 if you're living outside of God's plan because you've been duped by human wisdom. God's plan may be for you being delivered from this situation by now, but you're still in it because you're operating outside of God's plan, you're operating in human wisdom, and the devil is holding you up in court. The word of your testimony, you must speak in agreement with God. Do you have a public statement, word of your testimony that I, I don't know God, no, belief in God won't work, that's a catch-all 'cause we don't know who you're talking about. Jesus Christ clarifies the issue.
There must be a willingness to be publicly identified with Jesus Christ if you want to activate the blood. 'Cause God the Father didn't die on the cross, the Holy Spirit didn't die on the cross, and Jesus said, "All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth. So if you want victory over the devil, you better not be ashamed to be associated with me". You and I were on our way to certain death, we were on our way to the fire and the flames, but I know somebody with scars in his hands, and scars in his feet, and a scar on his side, and the only reason he's got those scars is 'cause he was delivering you and delivering me, so you better not be ashamed to let people know that you belong to Jesus Christ, that he is your Savior.
That is the word of your testimony. I am a follower of Jesus Christ. Then the third thing, he says, "You'll overcome him in court by the blood," the appeal to what was accomplished on Calvary. He's lost his authority to the word of your testimony. You identify with Christ and agree to his truth. And finally, he says, "And they did not love their life even when faced with death". He starts off with the cross, he goes to the confession, the testimony, and now he concludes with the commitment. He says, "They lay down their lives". Now to understand this, "They did not love their life even to the point of death," is the principle of surrender. It is surrender to his will and his purpose over your will and your purpose.
Even Jesus had to face this in the garden of Gethsemane when he said, "Not my will, but thy will be done," as sweat, as blood dripped down from him as he had to approach something he didn't wanna approach. He had to say, "Thy will be done". He had to surrender to the will of God. Here is the problem, many of us and maybe most, particularly in America, and let me tell you something about America as we have left our biblical moorings, as we have left a Judeo framework, as we have left a Christian perspective, that has opened the door for all hell to break loose. And that is what you and I are on the verge of now. He says, "If you gonna be my disciple, if you gonna be serious about me, then you gonna have to deny yourself, take up your cross," here it is, "daily".
This is a day by day decision. You must take up your cross daily and follow me. So let me talk about take up the cross, 'cause that takes us back to the blood, 'cause the blood is not just a 2,000 year old event, he says, "You must take up your cross". Okay, when Jesus bore his cross and was walking down the road of suffering, he was being accused of being guilty, of being a subversive to the Roman government, that he has been subversive to the Roman government, he is saying, "He is the king, not Caesar, and we are killing him for a crime". They placed on his cross "King of the Jews," because they put on the cross what you were accused of. He was accused of being a competing diggity to Caesar.
So that accusation was against him, and they made him carry his cross to identify with the accusation against him, and he was going to have to pay the price for the identification, which was Calvary. Luke 9:23 and many other verses like that, particularly in the book of Luke, talks about you carrying your cross. Not his cross, you can't carry his cross. His cross was once and for all, for all the sins of all mankind, for all time, you can't do that, but you have a cross. What puts this cross on your back? Your identity with Jesus Christ. That's what you're gonna be found guilty of. You're gonna be found guilty of being a Christian, okay?
When you carry this cross, he says, when you get up in the morning daily, you are to say, "I am willing to be identified with Christ no matter the price tag for the identification". That's what that said. Lay down your life daily. Well, you can't physically die daily. So he's talking about a willingness to be identified with him no matter the price tag for the identification. That is what it is to not love your life even in the place of death. It has to do with a discipleship surrender. What a lot of people want is they want Jesus association without Jesus identification. God doesn't need no more fans, he needs some serious followers. He doesn't need convenient Christians, cultural Christians, political Christians, racial Christians, he needs biblical Christians who are associated with Jesus Christ, and I'm gonna tell you now that nothing like Jesus standing in your court and objecting to what Satan has got on you.
'Cause I know if we tell the truth and shame the devil, he got a lot of stuff on a lot of us that if the judge ever had, we are in trouble. You better get your defense attorney up outta that chair and object over here, because if he stays seated 'cause you don't wanna identify with him, you're in trouble. He says, "The cross," your identification with Christ and your discipleship, the fact that you're all in, you're not just a church member, a church goer, you're not just somebody who just references Bible verses, but day by day you get up and you say, "I die to me, I live for you, and that's how I roll, that's how I roll". When you do that, the text says, "And they overcame him". "They overcame him". They came out a victor and stopped being a victim.