There is absolutely zero Biblical evidence that Satan rejoiced at the death of Christ. What we know is that he had been waiting for it since Genesis 3:15, when he was first informed of the truth that Christ would crush his head when His heel was bruised.

I believe we see some indication, in fact, of the devil fighting the crucifixion. Pilate was a ruthless governor. Philo and Josephus both report that as governor he instigated riots just so he could execute people. He had a reputation of being bloodthirsty. Other historians note that his treatment of Jesus seems so out of character – to proclaim a man innocent and try several times to release Him, to listen to a warning from his wife who had a dream, to wash his hands of the matter because he saw no reason at all to execute Jesus. This is not typical behavior for a governor who was later relieved of his post by higher authorities in Rome all because of his brutal tactics.

At the cross, Satan did not win anything. He did not kill Christ. He did not benefit for a second. Christ owed Satan no ransom – that was paid to God on our behalf because the debt owed was the stored up wrath of God for our sin. Christ had no need to wrestle the devil for the keys of death and hell – these were never the devil’s to begin with. Satan can only ever go as far as the Sovereign Arm of Almighty God allows him to go. In other words, Satan is on a leash and God holds the reigns.

Let us reject the lie that Satan rules in hell. Christ rules in heaven and in hell! Remember that the lake of fire was created for the devil’s torment, not his rule. Rev. 20:10 The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

Stop exalting Satan at this time, during this celebration. Exalt Christ who alone is worthy. And if we must remember the devil at all, remember he is defeated and retreating….dangerous, yes, but not autonomous. He can do nothing outside of the control of Christ – the One who died and rose again in order to defang the serpent forever.

Christ is all in all. So don’t think we need to give the devil his due. That’s coming soon enough!

“Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns!”