God says that when Pharaoh asks for a sign, Moses is to tell Aaron to cast down his staff to become a serpent. They do it.
Pharaoh calls for his magicians. These are the same types of men who were unable to interpret Pharaoh’s dream when Joseph rose to fame. We don’t know how many were there, but they each can do the same. They throw down their staffs and they becoming serpents. Then, in one of those brilliant touches, Aaron’s staff eats the others. So, what just happened? Did they show themselves as powerful as God?
Satan is capable of the supernatural. Satan can imitate God, up to a point. We are NEVER to be enticed by the supernatural. We’re never to assume that something supernatural is from God.
As this story progresses, we’ll see this again, the imitation of what God does. But God is sending plagues on them. They couldn’t stop Aaron’s serpent. They could just make it worse with more snakes slithering around. Is that really what you want? God is the one who makes it better, swallowing them up.
Satan can do his job. He can make things worse. He can multiply the problem, the plague, the hurt, the pain, the poverty, the death.
I do think sometimes Satan imitates healing and prosperity and life, but he does so with evil motives and it’s not for anyone’s good, but for their harm. It’s him playing god, but he doesn’t have holiness and love rooting his actions as the true God does.
How do we know the difference? How can we tell when God’s at work if Satan’s imitation can seem to be the same thing?
Discernment. It’s knowing God and having His Spirit in you so that when you encounter the opposite, you spot the difference. You react inside knowing something’s different even though on the outside you can’t see what makes it different. But to spot the counterfeit, you have to know the original. Know God and have His life in you. Walk in holiness so that anything unholy will rub you the wrong way. Walk in truth so that any lie will stand out like a sore thumb. Walk in love so any false motivation will make you queasy.
And like Aaron’s staff swallowing up the others, if we wait and watch, God will have the ultimate victory. The fruit will be obvious, eventually. It’s in the meantime we have to be cautious about it.