Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The power of the devil?

I've touched on this in a previous post, but I want to raise the issue again.

What power does the devil have?

I heard recently of a newborn baby with tumours behind its eyes. The person recounting the news was absolutely convinced that these tumours were a direct spiritual attack - that the devil had caused the baby to be born with these tumours.

Does the devil have the power to do this? Or is this simply the product of a fallen world (i.e. is it just 'life')?

Mulling over my previous observations, I still observe that Jesus only attributes the powers of deception and theft to the devil - he does not give the devil credit for any power over nature. In the gospels, Jesus is the one who the wind and waves obey, not the devil.

Could this be a spiritual attack?


Chris Hamer-Hodges said...

&It is my opinion that the devil does not have the power to do this (not without direct authorisation anyway), and that these tragic incidents are a result of living in a fallen world. A curse which the devil himself is under, not the administrator of!

Consider the implications if the devil did have the power to aflict tumours on newly borns: why aren't more babies aflicted in such a way? Is it down to some mercy or goodness in the Evil One? Or is it that God usually blocks such attacks, but sometimes he is caught of guard? Any way you look at it, it is absurd.

However, I'm sure Satan can and does, try to use such situations for his advantage. Using deception to try to diminish the goodness of God, or elevate his own greatness.

So it could be accompanied by a spiritual attack, but not the result of one.

The good news is that Jesus does have the power to reverse it! And even if he does not heal, his goodness and mercy, his love and his presence are more than sufficient for even the darkest hour.

It's a shame that so many look to the devil at such times, when it is then that the Lord is closest.

Ricky Carvel said...

Thanks Chris. Very interesting comment: "...living in a fallen world. A curse which the devil himself is under, not the administrator of!"

I'll need to think that one through!

Anonymous said...

The devil can do nothing without the direct authority of God. Read Job.