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“"Satan at Work in the World"”
...in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient.
Thoughts for Today:
This is a really interesting verse. Paul is telling us -- before we were saved and we followed the ways of the world -- we actually were being led and directed by Satan. However, this happens with such cunning that often times it is hidden from view. Paul describes Satan as "the ruler of the kingdom of air". In other words, his work, like wind can be invisible to the naked eye -- but that doesn't make it any less devastating (for example, hurricanes or tornadoes).
Most non-believers think the actions they take are the result of making their own decisions. But, that is far from the truth. Scripture tells us (in many instances, including our passage today) that it is Satan who is controlling the unsaved. Just remember, not all activities of the demonic realm are quite as evident as it is for someone who appears to be demon-possessed. For example, those with selfish pride are being controlled by Satan -- just in a different way than another person who is committing acts which society labels as outright evil (child molestation, murder, etc.).
It is Satan's goal to turn people from God. But to be successful he doesn't have to turn them all the way into Hollywood style devil-worshippers. If people are simply living for themselves, and therefore separated from God, it is more than enough to earn eternal damnation. Paul tells us there is literally an entity of Satan who is at work "in those who are disobedient".
Questions to Ponder:
I think it is critical to have this verse in mind when we pray for the lost. It is one reason we must always ask for Satan to be bound. Paul said, in 2 Corinthians 4:4: "The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God." Will you pray for the lost now? Pray for their eyes, ears and minds to be opened to the truth of God's love, mercy and grace in Christ Jesus.
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About the author
Pocket Devotions are written by Mike Brooks. A retired businessman, he is Moderator of South Shores church, leads the Deacon Board, serves on the finance committee, and he teaches a Men's Bible study and the Men's Ministry. Mike has a passion for evangelical missions. He is the husband of Sherry; the father of Ryan, Natalie, Krissy, Rebecca, and Amanda; the father-in-law of Ariel; and the grandfather of Conner and Christian.