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I also grant that these hymns could be interpreted to mean that between Christ’s death and resurrection the foe he hadn’t.That depiction may be possible, although there is no scriptural evidence that this happened.In other words, it is communicated, sometimes explicitly but usually implicitly, that the death of Jesus was not the event of conquest over these enemies.
In John -32, Jesus refers to his crucifixion (“when I am lifted up from the earth”) as the occasion for Satan’s downfall (“the ruler of this world will be cast out”).
The Apostle Paul connects Christ’s triumph over the powers of evil explicitly to the cross: “He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us that that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross.
But it is in fact in reflecting on the content of my own preaching that I have come to view this as a significant deficiency.
Scripture abundantly attests to the fact that it was at the cross that sin was denuded and Satan was bested.
The lyrics of this hymn state: The foe in triumph shouted when Christ lay in the tomb; But lo, he now is routed, his boast is turned to gloom. Walther, “He’s Risen, He’s Risen” ( 480): The foe was triumphant when on Calvary the Lord of creation was nailed to the tree.
For Christ again is free; in glorious victory He who is strong to save has triumphed o’er the grave. In Satan’s domain did the hosts shout and jeer, for Jesus was slain whom the evil ones fear.
Nevertheless, I doubt that many who sing these verses understand them to mean this.
In addition, I don’t want to name names regarding preachers who fall under my critique, since I heed the wise admonition: “Let him who is without (homiletical) sin cast stones.” I admit that in the past I have preached in such a manner as to diminish Christ’s conquest at the cross and to reserve victory only for the resurrection.
The predicted such: “He will crush your head, and you shall strike his heel” (Gen. In other words, the promised seed of the woman would render the fatal blow to Satan while simultaneously being wounded by the enemy, a promise fulfilled at the cross.
This prophecy is admittedly cryptic, but other passages are more explicit.