Writing 20 years after James, soon after Paul and Peter wrote their last epistles, the writer of Hebrews states that Satan holds the power of death, but that Jesus became a man so that he could destroy Satan and the consequences of death which sin brings (Hebrews 2:14-15). God has conquered death and Jesus is forever victorious over it (1 Corinthians 15).
Writing about 5 or 6 years after Hebrews and 2 Peter, Jude (Jude 6) writes something similar to what Peter had written (see 2 Peter 2:4 above) about some demons even now being chained awaiting judgment.
A few verses later, when talking about the danger of slandering others, Jude uses the archangel Michael as an example for he did not bring a slanderous accusation against Satan when he was disputing him for Moses’ body. Instead he said, “the Lord rebuke you” (Jude 8-9).
LESSON FOR TODAY: While we aren’t to fear demons, we must have a healthy respect for their power which is greater than ours. Especially the higher ranking demons who have power to cause much destruction. Our warfare against them must be done carefully, preferably with others praying for us, and always in an attitude of total dependence on God.
John, the brother of James and close friend of Jesus, wrote the final 4 books in the Bible. 1 John was written about 90 AD, 25 years after Peter and Paul wrote their last works and were martyred. He complements his readers for “overcoming the evil one” (1 John 2:13-14). They didn’t dethrone or destroy Satan, but kept their faith in Christ despite the opposition of the enemy.
John also gives some very helpful advice for us in our warfare today when he tells his readers to “test the spirits” (1 John 4:1). When a demon is behind a teaching or philosophy, it will not recognize that Jesus is God who came in the flesh to be the payment for our sins (1 John 4:2-3). We do not have to fear them because God is greater than they are and He lives in us, making us greater than any demon (1 John 4:4-6).
LESSON FOR TODAY: This verse, 1 John 4:4, is one every believer should memorize and use often. Quoting Scripture is our “sword of the Spirit” (Ephesians 6:10-18) and that is how Jesus had victory over Satan’s temptation (Matthew 4:1-11). This is a great verse to counter fear and remind us of where the real power lies!
Along the same line of thought, John reassured those he is writing to that believers are free from the condemnation that sin brings (1 John 5:18; Romans 8:1). That doesn’t mean believers don’t sin, they do – but the sin has been paid for so Satan cannot use it to destroy them as long as they confesses the sin and cleans themselves from it. Even if someone doesn’t do so, Satan still doesn’t have free reign to harm them. When someone is a child of God, Satan and his demons can only do what God allows them to do (Job 1, 2). “Harm” is the Greek word meaning “to assault, in order to sever the vital union between Christ and the believer.” Satan cannot separate us from Christ – nothing can do that for the believer (Romans 8:31-39).
by Rev. Dr. Jerry Schmoyer, Christian Training Organization