Crosses             LBG                  HateLove

Devotional - week of November 19, 2006


attacking the gates of hades

  

And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.  Matthew 16:18

 

The word “prevail” indicates conflict between Christ’s church and Hades. Since gates indicate a means of defense, Jesus means the church is the aggressor.

 

The term “Hades” refers to the place of the dead. Read Matthew 16:18 in light of the following verses.

 

And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins … Ephesians 2:1.

 

… even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive … Ephesians 2:5

 

These verses show that the spiritually dead are in the kingdom of Satan. Jesus says in Acts 1:8 that His followers will be His witnesses to the uttermost part of the earth. The aggression by the church against the kingdom of Satan is worldwide and it cannot be stopped.

 

As we rejoice in this statement of victory and the salvation of the unsaved, we must pay attention to all that Jesus says in His statement of victory.

 

Jesus is the builder of the aggressive and victorious church. A sign identifying a building as a church does not necessarily mean the group that meets there is a church Jesus has built.

 

In 1 Corinthians 3:11 Paul writes concerning the church:

 

For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

 

Jesus identifies the victorious church as “My church.” He is the head of the church and therefore is the resource for guidance, power, passion, and motivation that successfully attacks the place of the dead and brings spiritual life.

 

The place of believers in this victory march to the uttermost part of the earth is that of making our lives available to Jesus as instruments through which He can do the work of aggression and conquest.