The Accuser Is Gone
7Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, 8but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. 9And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. 10And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. 11And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. 12Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!”
As Christ Ascends into Heaven, there is no room for two voices representing God’s people before the Throne. Up until this point Satan has been allowed to speak to the Father about the people. He has been allowed to accuse them of their sins. In the Old Testament we have a few examples of Satan openly standing in the court of heaven and speaking accusations against God’s people. Probably most famously is the story of Job and his struggle with the terrible tortures Satan visits upon him. This story begins with Satan making a “casual” appearance in God’s court. A very similar event takes place immediately in Job 2.
6Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. 7The Lord said to Satan, “From where have you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” 8And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?” 9Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? 10Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.” 12And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
Also in the book of Zechariah we find a priest standing before God and Satan is present to bring accusation.
Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him.
So clearly Satan was allowed to speak in God’s court and he felt free to bring charges of sinfulness against God’s people. And here’s the kicker – he wasn’t wrong. They were indeed sinners. But with the arrival of the triumphant Christ back into the Heavenly Courtroom, there is no longer any place for Satan to stand. Now Christ represents the people and they are washed in His blood. The time for accusation is gone – forever.
“As a result of Christ’s victory on the cross and his public vindication over the dragon at his ascension and exaltation, there was no longer any room in heaven for the accuser. The dragon had to be thrown out of heaven, for Christ’s vicarious atonement and justification of the saints made Satan’s accusations false—lies—and an offense against God’s gracious justice in Christ. Once Christ was elevated and enthroned, the slanderer was held in contempt of God’s court and “was thrown out” (12:9), never again to appear before God’s heavenly presence.”
Brighton, L. A. ©1999. Revelation (p. 335). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Pub. House.
This is a moment of monumental importance for us. God is not hearing about your sins in heaven! Please let me repeat that. God is not hearing about your sins in heaven. Satan is banished and Jesus is only one there. He is presenting you as His holy bride and you are completely righteous because of His blood. But we still have a problem and it will be with us until Jesus returns. Satan has not been banished from the earth and he feels quite free to accuse you of your sin to your face. He wants you to remember every offense. He wants you to twist in the wind over every sin. He wants you to dwell on your guilt because it will eat you alive.
Now – whose voice do you want to hear, Jesus’ or Satan’s? Whose voice are you going to believe, Jesus’ or Satan’s? We already know who God believes. I say we side with God and let Satan’s taunts and jeers fall on deaf ears. Claim the victory of Jesus in your life and leave Satan’s accusations behind.