Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Kingdom of Satan

Is there a kingdom of Satan? There are some who refuse to believe in it. Yet the kingdom of Satan exists, as Jesus said. "And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand?" (Matthew 12:26)

There are also some who believe in Satan's kingdom, but have grossly misidentified it. For the kingdom of Satan is not at all like people have often portrayed it throughout history, whether in belief of it or in disbelief of it. For example, Hell is not his kingdom; Satan and his minions have no desire to be there! "And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him. And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep." (Luke 8:30-31)

To understand the nature of Satan's kingdom, we must consider his original sin. "How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! [how] art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit." (Isaiah 14:12-15)

The essence of Satan's sin is his heart's desire to be like God, "I will be like the most High." Does that not sound like what a Christian is supposed to be- Christlike and godly? But there is a crucial difference. A Christian becomes like God through receiving the gift of God, and thus being made One with God. Satan, however, desires to imitate God on his own; that is the heart of his fraud, of his lies. That is how he tempted Eve: " shall be as gods, knowing good and evil." (Genesis 3:5b)

That, therefore, is the nature of Satan's kingdom- to be like God's kingdom, to imitate it. No one has striven harder than Satan to set up a kingdom like God's on earth! Thus those men who have striven to set up such a kingdom with force- whether they be Muslim, or Catholic, or Puritan, or John Calvin- were actually furthering Satan's kingdom.

Many violent acts have been done in the name of religion, to force religion on men; but such acts were in reality furthering Satan's kingdom. Such deeds done in the name of Christianity have given great occasion to the enemy to blaspheme; but Jesus warned us such things would come. Indeed, much of the New Testament is devoted to warning Christians about those who claim to be Christians, as it is written, "And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore [it is] no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works." (II Corinthians 11:14-15)

Because the nature of Satan is to imitate God, religion is his domain; for imitating God is the purpose of religion. But the desire of all tyrants for power can also be traced to a desire to imitate God- as indeed is written of greatest tyrant the world will ever know, the Antichrist: "Let no man deceive you by any means: for [that day shall not come], except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God." (II Thessalonians 2:3-4)

Satan's kingdom is a gross imitation of God's. Satan cannot create, he can only pervert that which is created. Satan's kingdom is established by force; and while Satan's kingdom will justly be destroyed, God's kingdom is established by promise. For God gave us His kingdom, to be received by us as little children. God's kingdom cannot be imitated- nor can it be imposed; but it can and ought to be received.

"Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." (Luke 12:32)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for a great article. Just the knowledge I was looking for!