Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them.
Then the Lord said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job?"
- Job 1:6, 8
Satan understood Job. He knew the workings of that corrupt [human] nature which his own lie had formed in the garden of Eden. He had said, "Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge around him? Touch all that he has, and see if he will not curse You to Your face! Skin for skin, yes, all that a man has he will give for his life." (See Job 1:9-11, 2:4.) And serious and terrible is the thought that he knows us so thoroughly and understands the springs of thought and will within us.
But though Satan thus understood Job, he did not understand God. The counsels of grace are above him.
And by reason of this, he has been always, in the history of this world, defeating himself while thinking that he was getting the advantage of us. For he has to meet God in the very thing he does and the purpose he plans against us.
When Satan interfered with Adam in the garden, he encountered God to his confusion, and God's promise announced his own doom (Genesis 3:1-15). When he provoked David to number the people, Ornan's threshing floor was disclosed, and the spot where mercy rejoiced against judgment became the place of the Temple (1 Chronicles 21:1-18, 22:1). When he sifted the apostles as wheat, he was answered by the prayer of Jesus, and instead of faith failing, brethren were strengthened (Luke 22:31-32).
And above all, when he touched the Lord Jesus on the cross, the very death he inflicted was his own perfect and accomplished destruction.
In every trouble which Satan brings on any of us, he finds sooner or later that he has met the mighty God and not the feeble saint. He entered Job's nest to spoil it and leave it driven and wasted. But God was there as well as His servant Job, and in the end Satan was confounded.
Thus it is with the saints and their enemy. They shall reign over the kingdom, and there Satan shall have no place. Out of the trials which he had raised around and against them, they come forth to wear their crowns and sing their triumph songs. Instead of his appearing again "among the sons of God" (Job 1:6), the mighty angel shall lay hold on him and cast him into the bottomless pit (Revelation 20:1-3).
These are illustrious exhibitions of Satan always being defeated. They show this-- that he lends himself directly to his own overthrow. His own weapon is turned against himself. The one whom he assails is, by the very attack, given strength and virtue against him. Happy assurance: Our great adversary is never victorious!
John G. Bellett