The Cosmic Conflict Between Christ & Satan

January, February, March 2002

Want to learn more about The Cosmic Conflict Between Christ & Satan? Use these Bible Studies for personal devotion, group Bible studies, or teaching a church class. Below are links to the lessons in this 13-part series.

Lesson 1: War in Heaven (Revelation 12, Isaiah 14, Ezekiel 28)
Do you find it hard to trust God? Have you seen situations that are simply unfair? Not too long ago, I was asked to be a guest Bible teacher at a church. One of the members of the church asked me to come to her home to meet relatives. When I got there, the relatives were a married couple. I was told their parents and children were riding together in a car when they had an accident and all were killed. In one day this couple lost their parents and their children. I had been invited to the home to explain how a God who would allow this was both loving and trustworthy. Our lessons this quarter explore this issue of how an evil world can exist when a loving God is in charge. Let's jump into our first lesson!

Lesson 2: Issues in the Great Controversy (Matthew 4)
Last week we discovered that pride (wanting to be like God) was at the root of Satan's sin and fall from heaven. We also found that pride (wanting to be like God) was the cause of the entry of sin into our world. Since this is the way in which the war between Jesus and Satan began, how does this play out in our daily lives? My daughter sometimes says that she has "issues" with me. Just what are these "issues" between God and Satan in which we are now combatants? Let's dive in and find out!

Lesson 3: The Contenders (Philippians 2, 1 Thessalonians 5, 1 John 2, 2 Corinthians 4)
Have you ever watched a boxing match? When I have seen world championship matches on television, they tell us how much each contestant weighs, how tall he is, the length of his arms and how he has done in prior matches. To give us some kind of idea of what kind of person the boxer is, they generally do some sort of interview. This week our lesson looks at the two contenders for the championship of our world: Christ and Satan. Since we learned that we are part of the battle between good and evil, this fight is personal. So, let's jump in and see what we can learn about each of these contenders!

Lesson 4: The War Comes to Earth (Genesis 4,6&11)
Have you heard the old joke, "Question: Why do you beat your head against the wall? Answer: Because it feels good when I stop!" Sometimes we get so used to things we do not realize how life could be otherwise. For example, there are areas of the world in which war has been going on for decades. War just becomes part of life. In the U.S., war has not existed on the mainland for over 100 years. This extra-ordinary period made the shock of September 11 that much greater. Have we become so used to the war between good and evil that we no longer really notice? Do we accept evil as a usual part of life - a usual part of our life? Let's jump into our lesson and see if we can sharpen our senses!

Lesson 5: Winning and Losing (Judges 13-14; 2 Samuel 11; 1 Kings 18-19)
There is nothing like a academic discussion of sin. No need to make the discussion of sin too personal, right? So far in our lessons this quarter we have discussed the general conflict between good and evil. Let's bring it closer to home this week. How is the conflict between good and evil going in your life? This week we look at how the battle influences the lives of individuals. Maybe you will see yourself in some of these stories. Let's jump in!

Lesson 6: Faith Amid Turmoil (Daniel 6, Esther 3 & 4)
Last week we discussed real people who were caught up in the cosmic conflict between good and evil. In the cases we studied (David, Samson, Elijah) we found people of faith who gave in to sinful impulses. This week we look at real people who suffered through no apparent fault of their own, but remained faithful. Let's jump in.

Lesson 7: Jesus Models Victory (John 6, Luke 4)
How did Jesus deal with sin when He was here? In Lesson 2 of this series, we studied Satan's open and direct attempt to get Jesus to sin when they were in the wilderness. This week we move beyond the direct approach to see how Jesus was tempted by His friends, neighbors and followers. Let's jump in!

Lesson 8: The Great Controversy in the Parables of Jesus (Matthew 13, Luke 15)
Jesus used parables, what I call "word-pictures," to teach the lessons of the Kingdom of Heaven. This week we turn our study to a few of these parables that better help us to understand the controversy between good and evil. Let's dive in!

Lesson 9: The Great Controversy and the Miracles of Jesus (Mark 5, John 11)
Miracles have been an important part of the historic conflict between good and evil. Consider when Elijah called fire down from heaven. Consider the flood and the rainbow. These were rather dramatic points in the conflict against evil. Why don't we see dramatic miracles like that any more? Jesus performed a number of miracles, including raising the dead to life. We don't see people being raised from the dead today. Why don't we have such dramatic evidence of God's working today? I think the answers to these questions are hidden in some of the more unusual aspects of Jesus' miracles. Let's jump into our lesson and find out!

Lesson 10: Jesus Wins (Mark 14, 15 & John 20)
The ultimate battle in the great controversy between Jesus and Satan took place during the time frame when Jesus died on the cross and was resurrected. With His life, death and resurrection, Jesus won the battle over sin. The question is whether we will join the winning side. Let's plunge into our study of Jesus' sacrifice for us which allowed us to accept His the victory over death!

Lesson 11: The War Within (John 12, Matthew 16, 26 & 27)
Last week we learned that at the cross Jesus won the conflict between good and evil. His victory gives us the opportunity to choose between good and evil, life and death. How are you choosing? Restoring our choice means that the conflict is still to be decided in our life. Let's explore how that conflict played out in the lives of two of Jesus' disciples.

Lesson 12: The Great Controversy and the Church (Acts 1,2,4,6 & 15)
How important is the church to Christian living? How important is it to regularly meet with fellow believers? In my religious freedom litigation, I generally have to prove the sincerity of my client's religious beliefs. Over the many years of litigation I have noticed that those Christians who regularly worship with other Christians are the most sincere. Most of my "sincerity" problems arise from individuals who worship on their own. My conclusion is just an observation and not a scientific poll. What does the Bible teach us about the importance of the church in the controversy between good and evil? Let's dive in and find out!

Lesson 13: The End of the Great Controversy (Revelation 13, 14 & 19)
This quarter we have been studying the conflict between good and evil. In our last lesson, we turn our attention to the final events that wrap up the great controversy. What are the key issues in the final conflict? Are they the same as they have always been? Where do we fit into those issues? Will Jesus win in the end? Let's jump in and find out!

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