“That through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.” Hebrews 2:14
Suggested Further Reading: Genesis 3:1-15
At last the day arrived; it was telegraphed to the court of hell that at last Christ would die. They rung their bells with hellish mirth and joy. “He will die now,” said he; “Judas has taken the thirty pieces of silver. Let those scribes and Pharisees get him, they will no more let him go than the spider will a poor unfortunate fly. He is safe now.” And the devil laughed for very glee, when he saw the Saviour stand before Pilate’s bar. And when it was said, “Let him be crucified,” then his joy knew no bounds, except that bound which his own misery must ever set to it. As far as he could, he revelled in what was to him a delightful thought, that the Lord of glory was about to die. In death, as Christ was seen of angels, he was seen of devils too; and that dreary march from Pilate’s palace to the cross was one which devils saw with extraordinary interest. And when they saw him on the cross, there stood the exulting fiend, smiling to himself. “Ah! I have the King of Glory now in my dominions; I have the power of death, and I have the power over the Lord Jesus.” He exerted that power, till the Lord Jesus had to cry out in bitter anguish, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” But, how short-lived was hellish victory! How brief was the Satanic triumph! He died; and “It is finished!” shook the gates of hell. Down from the cross the conqueror leaped, pursued the fiend with thunder-bolts of wrath; swift to the shades of hell the fiend did fly, and swift descending went the conqueror after him.
For meditation: The powers of darkness enjoyed only an hour of apparent victory over the Lord Jesus Christ (Luke 22:53), but it resulted in his victory procession with them on public display as his captives (Colossians 2:15).
Sermon no. 166
6 December (1857)