“Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me. Then Jesus said to him, Begone, Satan! For it is written, You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve. Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.” Matthew 4:8-11
If you were offered authority over everything in the world and all that it has to offer — how would you respond? Now the only condition is worship the devil. Let’s face it, many people do not believe that there is a devil, so for them this might be easy. That is the question. Is there really a devil that somehow has authority over the world? Is there a Creator God? Are there really angels and demons? Or is all of this just religion that men made up centuries ago — to be easily discarded along with other foolishness?
Without the answers to these questions life is just a wandering generality with a bleak future. Or as an atheist friend once told me; “when I die I’m dirt” Have you ever wondered why people want for evolution to be true? From a logical and from a scientific perspective, evolution is fairly easy to demonstrate that it does not make any sense. Only the reality of a Creator makes sense. Yes but you have to believe in a god that you cannot see – they say. But isn’t that true of evolution as well – don’t you also have to believe in a theory concocted by old men? I just guess for many there is only room for one god in their lives – and that is themselves.
Now, back to Satan. Why would God give authority of the earth over to the devil? God did not give Satan authority over the earth. Authority comes from the word “author” and Satan is a fallen angel who was created by God. God is the author and creator of all things. And Jesus is God. Satan is only the author of lies and deceit. And he tells a big one here. The devil will always tempt us with the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, and the pride of life – in the same way that he tempted Eve in the garden.
And Jesus clearly gives us the answer as how to defeat Satan in this battle for our hearts and minds? With the true authority. And Jesus said; “For it is written” and he quotes (God’s Word – the sword of the Spirit). And He also calls evil – evil — and Jesus commands Satan to leave Him alone. “Then the devil left him.”
Who actually had the authority in this confrontation?
Only Jesus Has the authority over all the Kingdoms.
This teaching is for us to follow.
But you might say, doesn’t Paul refer to the devil as the god of this world? Yes, but true authority comes from the light. – “In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:4 God’s truth doesn’t teach that Satan has been given authority over or rules over the entire world. That’s Satan’s lie that men so blindly follow — the darkness.
For example, the devil has no authority over anything that is beautiful, good, or true in the world. But rather only that which is twisted, darkness, ugly, evil, and untrue. And the devil does rule over the system of sinful opposition to God. He is the leader of the rebellion against God. But Satan hasn’t been given power over the systems of the world that God created such as the wind, the seas, and the rain. The devil can and does influence men with lies, and can lead the foolish to do evil. These kingdoms that Satan speaks of here are kingdoms of rebellion and for doing evil in God’s sight. Who in their right mind would want such authority?
So what are we to do when tempted by Satan and the world forces, of darkness, wickedness, and evil? How do we achieve victory over all sin?
Put on the full armor of God Ephesians 6:10-20
Memorize the Truth and when tempted respond with the sword of the Spirit. And forcefully reject the Devil — Out loud say; “Begone, Satan!” And then enter into His peace and rest, free of the devil’s influence. “Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.”
Grace and Peace to you my friends,
Bob West – Geezerdust2020©