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Archive for October, 2012

 

The Bible is neither silent nor lacking in descriptions of leaders who were Under the Influence of Satan or some of his evil emissaries. I am deliberately using the term “emissaries” because it means
someone who does a job for a government or a leader
someone who delivers a message for them
someone sent on a mission to represent the interests of someone else
and because I do not want my real message sidetracked by dithering over distinctions between demons, fallen angels, evil spirits, principalities, and the like.

 

The first leader obviously identified as under the influence was Nimrod. Genesis 10:9 describes him as ‘Nimrod, a mighty hunter before the Lord,’ and it is not talking about bagging an ibex. This hunter is more like a street commando.  Chuck Smith’s commentary says:

It should be translated “he was a mighty tyrant in the face of the LORD.” The hunting was the hunting of men’s soul. Nimrod became a leader in apostasy, developer of a great religious system later to become known as the Babylonian religious system or the “mystery Babylon.” That whole religious system was begun by Nimrod.

Archeology, historical writings, and even mythology offer additional insight into the character of Nimrod, the great-grandson of Noah. Much like the serpent in the Garden of Eden, Nimrod caused men to doubt that God had their true happiness at heart, and suggested that following God was actually an act of weakness. Josephus reports that Nimrod gradually changed the government into tyranny in order to turn men from the fear of God and make them dependent upon his power. The translation continues, “Now the multitude were very ready to follow the determination of Nimrod, and to esteem it a piece of cowardice to submit to God; and they built a tower …” This was, of course, what came to be known as the Tower of Babel because God sent judgment  in the form of a confusion of language.

Another leader under the influence was King Saul. After Saul rejected the word of the LORD and listened to the people instead, the LORD has rejected Saul from being king over Israel.  At that point, instead of handing in his resignation, Saul tries to remain king without God’s support. An evil spirit comes and begins terrorizing him, and the only thing that brings relief is David’s harp music.  Eventually Saul become so jealous of David that he tries repeatedly to murder him.

Another occurrence of biblical examples of a king under the influence is the Book of Daniel’s record of Nebuchadnezzar’s seven seasons of insanity. Nebuchadnezzar had a prophetic dream a year before it came to pass.

Two more examples that are certainly worth mentioning occur in passages from Ezekiel 28:12-17 and Isaiah 14:12-15.  These begin with comments about the kings of Tyre and Babylon, but continue on to address the controlling spirit behind them, even possession by Satan.

The case could be made for many other rulers being intermittently controlled or fully possessed— the Pharaoh ‘who knew not Joseph,’ Queen Jezebel, the Herods of the New Testament era, and more. Satan even tried to influence Jesus as he tempted him three times at the end of his wilderness fast. The point is that this was commonplace in the past, the devil purposely tries to influence those with power, and we should expect it to be happening today.

Evil emissaries do visit humans.  There is an evil intelligent design in the way they visit leaders and put thought in their minds.

My next planned post is about some counselors and advisers who were also visited by an evil spirit.

 

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