The Conditionalist Faith of Our Fathers, vol. 2


III. World to Be Swept Into Final Conflict by Demonic Forces

Throughout the ages Satan has been developing his master plan for the final deception of the “whole world” at the end of the age. The climax of this age-old design will be marked by an irruption of demonic spirits-“unclean spirits,” expressly identified as the “spirits of devils” in the closing book of Scripture (Revelation 16:13, 14). These will foment earth’s ultimate cataclysm. As repeatedly stated, the trouble all began back with the devil’s initial lie in Eden-“Ye shall not surely die” (Genesis 3:4, 5). Step by step the evil one has prepared the way for his wily masterpiece of deception-the final delusions of Spiritualism. These will reach their climax in the dramatic scene portrayed in the Apocalypse: CFF2 1249.1

“I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty” (Revelation 16:13, 14). CFF2 1249.2


From this scripture it is plain that it is the “spirits of devils” that foment the final winds of strife in the climax of human history. Fallen angels and fallen men league together in the last desperate confederacy of evil, moved by a compulsive power from beneath. The leaders of earth are involved, and participate. That is the inspired portrayal. According to the Word, this threefold union embraces the “dragon” (commonly identified as paganism, or the non-Christian world), the “beast” (widely recognized as the Papacy), and the “false prophet” (which many believe to be apostate Protestantism). CFF2 1249.3

These embrace the three great divisions of the human race-a threefold union of ominous import. And only those Christians whose minds have been fortified by the protectives of the Word of God will be able to recognize and resist this overwhelming deception fostered by the evil one, which will sweep practically the “whole world” into this seductive delusion. CFF2 1250.1


The foregoing scene is laid in time’s last hour, just before the second coming of Christ (Revelation 16:15). It culminates in earth’s final holocaust-the world-destroying war of Armageddon. Dreaded through the centuries and now an approaching actuality, and inspired by these “unclean spirits,” or “spirits of devils,” the nations of the “whole world” are drawn into the final, decimating conflict. It occurs as man’s probation ends and world apostasy is about to receive the outpouring of God’s final judgments (vs. 19-21). CFF2 1250.2

So, in earth’s climactic hour it is the “spirits of devils, working miracles” that seek to engulf the leaders of men and nations. Supernatural powers and wonders will be used to deceive. Unable to account for Satan’s “miracles,” they will mistakenly attribute them to the power of God, and mankind will thus be led captive. The apostle Paul declares that the Second Advent will bring about the destruction of “that Wicked” “whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders” (2 Thessalonians 2:9, 10). These developments are even now under way. So, when these final miracles are performed by “spirits” purporting to be those of our dead friends, we may know, instead, that “they are the spirits of devils, working miracles” (Revelation 16:14). CFF2 1250.3


One of the saddest, most tragic utterances of the Apocalypse is that confused, drifting Christendom will finally become the “habitation [katoiketerion, “dwelling place”] of devils,” and the “hold [phulake, “prison, ward, cage”] of every foul spirit” (Revelation 18:2). These are, of course, the same as the “unclean spirits” or “spirits of devils” of Revelation 16:4. By that time Spiritualism will have saturated what is denominated Christendom, or “Babylon.” Statesmen and churchmen are thus both affected. CFF2 1250.4

And the apostle John adds, concerning the final delusion in Christendom: “By thy sorceries were all nations deceived” (Revelation 18:23). The entire chapter presents a most sobering picture, with its tragic finale. Through the denial of the basic doctrines and provisions of salvation, those so deceived have with one stroke swept away the whole redemptive plan and purpose of God for man, as well as man’s sole source of protection against the “wiles of the devil.” Scientists who have denied the reality of the imponderable demonic forces under Satan’s control, will be overwhelmed by the evidence of inexplicable phenomena. And the widespread denial, in religious circles, of the personality of Satan has likewise well-nigh swept away the protective provisions of the Word. CFF2 1251.1


Two opposing powers stand face to face in the last great conflict-Christ, the Creator and Redeemer of man, and those loyal to Him; and the prince of darkness, and those who have rallied to his banner. These represent two opposing kingdoms contending for the mastery-God’s rightful government, and Satan’s rebel government, expelled from heaven and now about to make its last stand here on earth in these very days. But, as mentioned, the end of the conflict has been foretold by Inspiration-the absolute defeat and overthrow of Satan and all who follow him, demonic and human. This is the burden of the closing chapters of the book of Revelation. CFF2 1251.2


It is thus clear that Spiritualism is seeking to take the world captive and is making alarming progress. The reason for its success is obvious: The foundations for the successful spread of Spiritualism have been laid by the promulgation in both Protestant and Catholic pulpits of the doctrine of consciousness after death and the possibility of communion of the dead with the living-the basic twofold platform of Spiritualism. CFF2 1251.3

This false teaching has opened the way for the “spirits of devils” to deceive mankind by representing themselves as the spirits of the dead. But it is, instead, satanic agents who personate the dead, and multitudes are captivated by their subtle deceit. They teach that their dead friends are now radiant angels in the higher spheres. It is this that lays the foundation for the last great spiritistic deception now forebodingly under way. CFF2 1252.1


We stand upon the threshold of tremendous events. The nations are in increasing turmoil. Leaders are being swept onward toward appalling conflict by forces they do not understand, carried along by a tide they cannot stay. The nations of earth are marshaling their legions, impelled by unrecognized powers beyond their control. In the inerrant portrayal of Scripture the world is approaching the brink of the great last crisis, impelled by the actual “spirits of devils.” That is Spiritualism’s stellar role in earth’s closing events. And the adherents of Spiritualism are themselves duped, just as the nations are being victimized by demonic master minds bent on the destruction of mankind. Let us heed the counsels of the Word. Let us escape the ensnarement of Satan’s age-old masterpiece, now entering its final phase-his crowning stratagem. CFF2 1252.2