A Nice Kind Man

My wife and I have continued to enjoy our free daily streams of opera from the Metropolitan Opera, one of the world’s greatest opera houses. We are now on week 46 and this has been a real blessing coming out of the pandemic.

This week we were watching Gounods Faust. It is a tale of a scientist who at the end of his career pondered on the uselessness of his life when he meets the devil (Méphistophélès a nice kindly man) who agrees to make him youthful for a while if he sells his soul and serves Méphistophélès in hell afterwards.

As I watched the performance I remarked on how well they had portrayed life and the actions of the devil. Méphistophélès would put thoughts into people’s minds and enable them to play them out, while the individual thought they were behaving normally. Just at the critical time the devil would have a trick up his sleeve to alter the outcome and cause evil to occur. His main target was a simple honest girl (Marguerite) who believed in God whose life was ruined by Faust’s selfish desires aided by the devil. However, at the point where God was worshipped Méphistophélès cowered on the ground unable to bear it and at the final point where Marguerite prayed to God confessing her sin and worshipping Him she was forgiven and walked up the brightly lit staircase to heaven (it is opera!)

We can go through life thinking that the devil, or his lowly minions, were not touching us, yet I doubt if that is true. How often do we regret something that we have done, or surprised at someones reactions to us. More often than not this will be due to our own stupidity or ignorance but is it always. How often do we let satan have a foothold in our lives and when we do the results can be devastating, not only for us but also for those around us who also get hurt like Marguerite did. As we approach the ‘final days’ we need to be on alert as we are told that the devil will be more active and Christians are likely to be his target. We need to know God’s Word and stay close to Him, not allowing the devil to get a toehold on our lives for he will surely take advantage of our weaknesses.

1 Peter 5:8-9
Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

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