Ruler of the Kingdom of Darkness
The sad fact remains that this is not God's world. God's Kingdom is still not of this world, as Jesus Christ made clear in John 18:36. It is even more tragic that another being is ruler of this world, right here and right now—Satan the devil.
The apostle Paul described the spiritual blindness that envelops the world and pointed out the source of that blindness. "But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them" (2 Corinthians 4:3, 4). Who is the god of this age? He is none other than Satan, the great fallen superangel (Ezekiel 28:14-17). He is truly this world's ruler. Jesus Christ recognized that, saying that in the judgment "the ruler of this world will be cast out" (John 12:31).
Although we cannot see Satan, his influence on the world is pervasive. Paul understood this, telling the members in Ephesus, "And you He [God] made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience" (Ephesians 2:1, 2). The result of the devil's influence is that, before conversion, "we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others" (verse 3).
Satan spiritually influences humanity to reject God and God's law. Under Satan's influence, "the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can [it] be" (Romans 8:7). Separated from God, man chooses to go his own way, with devastating and tragic results. "There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death" (Proverbs 14:12; 16:25).
Satan's influence is so great that he "deceives the whole world" (Revelation 12:9). The entire world "lies under the sway of the wicked one" (1 John 5:19). Under Satan's influence, humanity has rejected God's revelation and guidance and built societies and civilizations on a wrong foundation.
When Jesus Christ returns, "the kingdoms of this world [will] become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!" (Revelation 11:15). Satan's world, built on a foundation of lies and deception, will come crashing down, replaced by the Kingdom of truth and light.
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