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God Restrains Satan

March 12, 2020
By Martin Luther

God came to Laban the Aramean in a dream by night and said to him, "Be careful not to say anything to Jacob, either good or bad."

GENESIS 31:24

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God Restrains Satan

God breaks and restrains the angry mood of Laban in such a way that he does not even dare to murmur against Jacob. This is set forth for our consolation that we may have a sure hope in the goodness and mercy of God, who, Paul says, is faithful and will not suffer us to be tempted above that which we are able to bear but along with the temptation give an end so that we are able to bear it (cf. 1 Corinthians 10:13)— . "You will by no means do this, Laban," [God] says; "no, not even a harsh or bitter word will you exchange with him." In this way He puts a limit on his rage, just as God says to Job concerning the billows and storms of the sea (cf. Job 38:10-11): "I prescribed bounds for it and set bars and doors and said, 'Thus far shall you come, and no farther, and here you shall dash to pieces your proud waves.' " . . . In this way the devil rises up against the Church and hurls dire threats at the godly and stirs up violence and destruction for them. But He who has set a limit for the sea calms also these billows so that Satan cannot rage according to his liking. . .. For God does not permit those who believe and have His Word to be afflicted and tempted beyond their strength. He is the faithful Guardian of those who guard and keep His Word.

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