In this season, we celebrate God sending His Son from heaven to save us from our sin. But Jesus came not only to take our sins away but also to destroy Satan's work.
Read 1 John 3:8. These two purposes of Jesus coming to earth are in the same paragraph. That's because sin—self-will or doing things our way—is Satan's invention. Sin is the devil's hallmark. At the root of all sin—immorality, lust, envy, hatred, pride, deep resentment, anger, lack of contentment—is rebellion against our holy God. The devil didn't just invent sin; he promotes it every day.
As a freed child of the King, do not seek out your old shackles.
But there is good news! Jesus did not come from heaven to merely restrain the works of the devil. He did not come from heaven to limit the works of the devil. He did not come from heaven to neutralize the works of the devil. He came to destroy them.
The word "destroy" means "to dissolve, to break shackles and loosen a grip." John uses a word for "destroy" that is often also used for "shipwreck." On the first Christmas, that's exactly what God did—He made a shipwreck of Satan. When Jesus was born, God gave Satan a notice: "Your time is up. Your power is about to be destroyed. Your grip is about to be demolished. The chains you use to enslave are about to be torn asunder." And when Jesus rose from the grave, He defeated death and conquered sin, utterly devastating Satan's handiwork.
It is true that Satan still "prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8). He still harasses us, but he is a lion whose claws have been pulled out and whose teeth have been knocked out. The roar may scare us at times, but he can never hurt us. He can never separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.
When you accept Jesus' death on the cross for your sins, Satan, the author of sin, loses his grip on your life. The devil has no more authority over you. Your responsibility is now to leave your sins on the cross with Jesus and not wander into the devil's territory. As a freed child of the King, do not seek out your old shackles. Christ has broken them, and while the lion may roar, his work has been undone.
Prayer: Father, thank You for sending Jesus to destroy the enemy's work. Thank You that because of Jesus, Satan has no grip on my life. Teach me to live in the freedom You purchased for me through Your sacrifice. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil's work" (1 John 3:8).