The atheist says, “I know there is no God.” This isn’t because of any scientific evidence or proof. It’s because he looks at the history of religion in the world and sees all the harm it has brought. No question that that is the case. Religion has don’t it’s fair share of harm in this world. What the atheist misses is the fact that his religion caused more deaths in the 20th century than all the deaths resulting from other religions for all of time before that. The atheist says, “I know there is no God” because he looks at the Bible and sees absurdity in the supernatural and miracles. He thinks that because they sound so out-of-the-ordinary that it is impossible for such things to happen. Therefore, they didn’t happen. Yet his own humanistic and materialistic view propose even more incredible sounding things like the big bang and life coming about by chance, random processes. They take it on faith and believe it as fact. The time will come when they will get it. They will try to contend with the Almighty and they will fail miserably. They need to come to the point that Job did and recognize their own smallness compared to God’s infiniteness. Then they will be wise and have knowledge.
I have nothing against reading. Reading is a great thing. After all, God’s word is in written form. I think God inspires people two write books and commentaries for the benefit of His people. I’ve got some ideas for some books I might write. At the same time it’s easy for pastors and teachers to get caught up in one of two things. (a) There is a ministerial subculture of reading the latest thing from the hottest-for-the-moment guy. It’s almost like a bunch of ladies watching their “stories” on TV. They talk about it amongst themselves, then they share them from the pulpit an inordinate amount of time. Again, reading stuff like this isn’t a bad thing. But when it’s done to the extreme it can be unhealthy. (2) Pastors and teachers can want to build their church and satisfy their congregation, so they slowly depart from solid Biblical materials and mix in the feel-good prosperity stuff, or the secular stuff. In either case they have ceased being messengers of the Lord of hosts. People should want to come to you because you know God, you hear from God, and the instruction you give when asked comes from Him. Be on guard as to who your influences are and God will use you to impact the lives of others for Him.
There is a tragic misunderstanding that has existed for centuries concerning Satan and Hell. Where it came from I don’t know but it has been perpetuated in everything from classical art to Warner Bros. cartoon. The misunderstanding is this; Satan is not in charge of Hell, nor are demons guards in Hell. Jesus Himself says that Hell was created for the Devil and his angels. Satan is going to be a prisoner in Hell right along with the beast, the false prophet, and everyone who has rejected Jesus as Lord. There is no hierarchy, there is not “staff”, and there is no escape. Satan would like us to think that he’s going to be in charge, but that just isn’t the case. It’s yet another subtle deception and desperate attempt by the devil to be lord over something. He may be free for now but a time is coming when he will meet his final destiny, as we all will. He has no choice in the matter. There is no redemption for him. We do have a choice in the matter. Jesus died and rose again to redeem us. That is the whole point of the Bible from beginning to end. What are we going to do with that redemption? Are we going to keep it to ourselves or are we going to share it with others before it’s too late?