The more valuable something is, the more likely it is to be counterfeited. This explains why fake Rolex watches, fake Gucci handbags, and fake Jordan sneakers, along with counterfeit currency, are so proliferous.
God creates, Satan counterfeits. This simple clue helps unlock a lot of the Bible. Satan is the counterfeit of God. Demons are the counterfeit of angels. The world is the counterfeit of the Kingdom. Lies are the counterfeit of the truth. Demon-possession is the counterfeit of being Spirit-filled. And, as we continue our study of John’s gospel, we find more counterfeits as Jesus approaches the cross.
First, there is a counterfeit high priest who seeks to condemn Jesus the real High Priest for being guilty of sin (John 18:19-24). Second, there is a counterfeit judge who wrongly participates in the arrest, trial, and execution of Jesus the real Judge (John 18:28-32). Third, there is a counterfeit king who demands allegiance over Jesus the real King (John 18:33-38).
Working behind all of this religious, legal, and political evil was Satan and demonic forces. Speaking of demons, we learn that, “the rulers of this age…crucified the Lord of glory” (1 Corinthians 2:8). After failing to destroy and overthrow Jesus in heaven, they repeat their efforts on the earth. At the Passover meal, Satan had already entered Judas Iscariot, the counterfeit disciple: “after he had taken the morsel, Satan entered into him.” Satan also sought to turn Peter into a counterfeit disciple, and nearly succeeded: “Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:31-32).
The power in a counterfeit is that it deceives someone into wrongly believing that what they have is real, true, and valuable when in fact it is fake, false, and worthless. For this reason, it is vital that God’s people learn to distinguish that what is created by God versus that which is counterfeited by Satan.
What things come to mind in your past where you have been fooled by a spiritual counterfeit? Is there anything that God brings to mind in the present that may be a spiritual counterfeit?