Scripture at the end.
Our son Andrew is a wonderful actor and director. He’s also a very busy businessman. Some years ago he played the role of Satan in The Thorn, a marvelous Easter production in Colorado similar to the Passion of the Christ. In costume, makeup and mask, he was hideous. The mask had been made by professional artists and made him appear so very real!
Given his athleticism and gymnastics background, his movements made your skin crawl. He was able to give the appearance of evil incarnate. Satan’s greatest moments were those from Jesus’ arrest to his death on the cross. As Jesus and the cross made their way through the audience to the crucifixion site, Satan was behind him slinking, gloating and celebrating.
Andrew had prayed that the Lord would use him in this vile role of Satan however He would. Later Andrew discovered just how profoundly the Lord did use him in one young man’s life. There was a high school student, who was sitting in the front row of an aisle that the procession went through.
This young man had a teacher who happened to be a Christian. A few days earlier she became aware that he was getting involved in drugs and warned him of the evil he was getting involved with – and he dismissed it. She then told him that he needed to come “face to face with Satan” in order to recognize the reality of what he was messing with.
It was this same young man, sitting in the front row, watching as Jesus, the soldiers and the cross went by. Then as Satan and the demons started to go by him, the Lord moved on Andrew to go nose-to-nose with this particular young man! So Andrew – as Satan – immediately spun, faced him nose-to-nose; and inches apart, let loose a hideous, blood-curdling scream – and then moved on. It was over in an instant, but the young man had come “face to face with Satan”. This directly resulted in his repentance and salvation!!!
Many of us share a similar type of problem with that young man. We are dabbling in things we shouldn’t – and we don’t recognize who or what we are messing with, or the consequences of our behavior. We think we love Jesus – but we live lives that are entwined with the world and its ways. We too, need to recognize the true reality of our lives. The Apostle John puts it this way,
Don’t love the world’s ways. Don’t love the world’s goods. Love of the world squeezes out love for the Father. Practically everything that goes on in the world—wanting your own way, wanting everything for yourself, wanting to appear important—has nothing to do with the Father. It just isolates you from him. The world and all its wanting, wanting, wanting is on the way out—but whoever does what God wants is set for eternity.
(1 John 2:15-17 The Message)