Tag: John

The Roaring Lion’s Folly

A.W. Tozerby A.W. Tozer

Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. First Peter 5:8–9

For the Word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ the Apostle John was exiled to the lonely isle that is called Patmos and, if tradition may be believed, was sent to work in the mines. But from his mine John saw farther than any king ever saw from his throne; he saw more from his mine than any astronaut ever saw from his orbit, for the scroll of unborn history was spread out before him and he was permitted to see the unfolding of the purposes of God onward to the time when the New Jerusalem will descend out of heaven from God.

John would have been less trouble to the devil back in Ephesus. Had he been permitted to go quietly about his church duties he might have gotten comfortably old without giving the world a preview of the downfall of Satan’s empire and his incarceration in the lake of fire. We can only conclude that Satan did not know how things would develop when he attacked John, and that he is therefore not as shrewd as he is supposed to be.

From Satan’s standpoint the slaying of the Man Christ Jesus was another huge blunder. In his hatred he carried his persecution to the point where Jew and Gentile united to destroy this Man whose very presence was a rebuke and a judgment to them and to him. But God turned the cross into an altar, and while wicked men watched Jesus die in the belief that they were getting rid of Him for good, He through the Eternal Spirit was offering Himself without spot to God as an atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world. Surely this was never in the mind of Satan when he set out to kill the Man whom he instinctively knew was his great enemy. The resurrection of Christ was his most stunning defeat.

One thing we must never forget: Satan is too shrewd for any of us, and to trust to our wisdom is to take the sure way toward defeat. God has turned Satan’s original wisdom into a built-in folly that makes it impossible for him to achieve his wicked ends. He has made evil his good, and in a moral world presided over by a just God, evil cannot win.

by A.W. Tozer

If you will just call out to Him

David Wilkersonby David Wilkerson

In the early years of the Church, a great persecution took place. During that awful period, the apostle John was taken prisoner and sent to Rome before being banished to the Isle of Patmos to die. Patmos was a small, desolate place inhabited by only a few other prisoners who had been exiled there.

When John disembarked at Patmos, he was left stranded, forsaken, isolated. He would later write, “I am banished to Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ” (see Revelation 1:9).

Why was John, a disciple of Jesus, given such a sentence? And why was Rome, the world’s ruling power, desperate to isolate him from civilization? Clearly, Rome considered him a threat, as he was obviously renowned among both Jews and Gentiles.

Now, John would be looked upon as a failure. If he were measured by the current standards of success, he would be considered worth nothing: he had no congregation, no church building, no money, no vehicle, no house, no decent clothes.

But how wrong everyone would be! Something incredible happened to John after his first few days on Patmos. He made a decision that impacted the entire church world for eternity. Simply put, John died to all his own plans and thought of ministry. As far as he knew, his exile on Patmos was his final lot but he determined to worship God. “I’m going to walk in the Spirit and give myself to seeking the face of God. Now I have time to get to know him as I never have.”

John’s life was reduced to a single focus: Jesus Christ alone. And he said, in essence, “All I will ever need is prayer, worship and communion with Lord.” It was there on Patmos that John learned to be dependent on the voice of Holy Spirit. And the good news is that later, John was given his freedom and his writings became an anointed light to the world.

You don’t need to be isolated in order to give yourself wholly to communion with the Lord. God will meet you right where you are, at any time of day or night, if you will just call out to him.

by David Wilkerson