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  • Writer's pictureDeborah

The Devil’s Claw

Series: Flowers in the Desert



Isaiah 12:2 ESV

Psalm 121:1-8 ESV

Romans 8:38-39 ESV


There are theologians who believe that salvation is a one time thing.


There are also theologians who believe that salvation is perpetual.


Isaiah 12:2 tells us, “Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid;for the Lord God is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation.”


God is my salvation is personal.


Salvation and the study of salvation was discussed at length in Seminary. It’s called the doctrine of Soteriology.


Salvation is the primary theme found in scripture from beginning to end. As we read scripture God’s eternal plan to love and redeem His children is found on every page and in every story.


When we intentionally look for God’s plan in the Word, we see the plan unfold.


God is salvation is eternal.


So, to answer the question, is salvation a one time thing or is it perpetual we come to realize it’s both. While each human may be able to identify a specific moment when we realize we need God and we call that our God moment, we can also have many moments we identify as God moments.


We have to look at the broader picture.


So, am I saying we lose our salvation and need to go through the process of receiving God all over again? Not at all. Actually, the opposite is true.


We need to understand that God is omnipotent.


God is omniscient.


God is omnipresent.


A great summary tells us, “Omnipotence means that God is in total control of himself and his creation. Omniscience means that he is the ultimate criterion of truth and falsity, so that his ideas are always true. Omnipresence means that since God’s power and knowledge extend to all parts of his creation, he himself is present everywhere. Together they define God’s lordship, and they yield a rich understanding of creation, providence, and salvation.” (https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/essay/omnipotence-omniscience-omnipresence-god/)


When I was younger I struggled to understand who God is, which I discovered later is not a bad thing. The reason it is a good thing is that I came to know and understand who God really is to me and ultimately to all of creation.


Psalm 121:1-2 tells us, “I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”


The author who wrote this song of ascents knew any time and all the time we look for God we find that God is always our “help”. When I was young I wasn’t sure what that looked like or felt like. As I matured in the faith I came to realize how God “speaks” to me. God communicated in myriad of ways. I was told by an older (and wiser) believer that if I don’t know how God communicates with me, I need to ask God to show me or teach me.


Once I asked and gave God permission, the Spirit started teaching me. While God is ever present, God does not force Himself on us. A wise pastor once put it this way, “God is a gentleman and waits for us to ask.”


Psalm 121:3-4 says, “He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.”


God is always watching over creation. God does not choose to turn away from us.


Psalm 121:5-6 tells us, “The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.”


We are always in God’s heart and thoughts. That is difficult for some to comprehend. I think that’s because we struggle to understand the fullness of God’s love for creation (which includes us). Think of it this way…God will never let go. God “keeps” hold of us.


Psalm 121:7-8 promises, “The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.”


Perpetually, from beginning to end God will protect us from evil. While God does not force us and gives us the right to choose, we are in God’s watch-care.


One tiny millisecond of a turn toward God, one time will keep us in God forevermore.


No words need to pass from our lips to another human. We do not need to perform a ritual. We do not have to act in a certain way. Having said that, there is absolutely nothing wrong about speaking words to another human about your commitment to God/Jesus. Rituals are beautiful and can be helpful. Proclaiming our love for God by our actions is wonderful. The bottom line is that any way we turn at any time is acceptable in God’s eyes.


Now…I’ve had conversations with folks about the devil’s power and reach on creation. I’ve known folks who give the devil a lot of “air time” and keep a constant watch for His evil actions.


The Apostle Paul puts it best when he explains in Romans 8:38-39, “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”


Nothing can separate us from God.


I had a dream decades ago that changed me forever. In the dream Satan was beside me bed and it was horrific. His hair was like moving snakes and he had many many arms that could reach very far. But here’s the deal…a very white beam of light separated Satan from me. The devil could not touch me because of the beam of light.


I woke up screaming and screaming. I cried and cried. The room smelled awful. I was expecting my third child and I was afraid Satan came to try to take my child or my other children.


To this day I do not know why that happened, but it opened my eyes to the reality of who Satan is…now evil and cruel, and yet how very powerless.


Because God is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent, Satan is powerless, Satan knows nothing that is true, and Satan is not present everywhere all the time. Satan has already been defeated.


So, is salvation a one time thing? Yes.


Is salvation ongoing? Yes.


Are we loved by God? Oh my oh my yes.


You ARE loved!


Spiritual Practice: Be Loved


Spent time in silence with God and let God love you.


In God, Deborah

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