A cosmic battle has been raging between Satan and God from the beginning of time and will continue to the end of time. He has opposed the kingdom purposes of God since the first sin in the cosmos committed by Satan himself (Ezek. 28:12–17; cf. 2 Peter 2:4; 1 John 3:8). Since his temptation of Adam and Eve to sin against God in the garden (Gen. 3:1–6), Satan, along with his demon hordes, has conducted a guerilla warfare campaign to deceive and enslave men and women in his kingdom of darkness. Mankind’s only hope is therefore in God’s redeeming grace, “For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Col. 1:13–14); causing us to turn “from darkness to light and from the dominion of Satan to God” (Acts 26:18).
The anti-God world system God allows Satan to temporarily control consists of human beings who are willing subjects of his rule that is mediated in his kingdom by “rulers … world forces of this darkness [and] the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Eph. 6:12). History is replete with examples of men and women who wittingly and unwittingly do his bidding. Together, they rebel against the Most High God. For this reason, God has cursed His creation. “For the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Rom. 8: 20–21).
Who Is Satan?
The various names and titles found in Scripture betray Satan’s character and the nature of his kingdom, some of which include:
- Accuser of our brethren (Rev. 12:10)
- Adversary (1 Peter 5:8)
- Angel of the bottomless pit (Rev. 9:11)
- Belial (2 Cor. 6:15)
- Distressing spirit (1 Sam. 16:14)
- Dragon (Rev. 20:2)
- Enemy (Matt. 13:39)
- Father of lies (John 8:44)
- Liar (John 8:44)
- Lying spirit (1 Kings 22:22)
- Murderer (John 8:44)
- Prince of the power of the air (Eph. 2:2)
- Ruler of the darkness of this world (Eph. 6:12)
- Ruler of the demons (Matt. 12:24)
- Ruler of this world (John 14:30)
- Satan (1 Chron. 12:1; Job 1:6)
- Serpent (Gen. 3:4, 13–14; 2 Cor. 11:3)
- Spirit who works in the sons of disobedience (Eph. 2:2)
- Tempter (Matt. 4:3)
- The god of this age (2 Cor. 4:4)
- Wicked one (Matt. 13:19)
Jesus said unbelievers “are of [their] father the devil …” and “want to do the desires of [their] father” who “was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him” (John 8:44). Paul said they “walk in the futility of their mind, being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the of the hardness of their heart; and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality, for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness” (Eph. 4:17–19)—a perfect description of America today. Our nation is characterized by lawlessness, darkness, and spiritual death, in contrast to believers who are characterized by righteousness, light, and spiritual life (2 Cor. 6:14–16).
Christians and non-Christians coexist on this planet physically, but not spiritually. You might say we live in two different worlds. This is why we often hear people spitefully say, “These Christians are from another planet!” And at one level, they’re right. Jesus said, “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world” (John 17:14). In fact, we guard ourselves from being “conformed to this world” (Rom. 12:2). Why? because it is ruled by Satan (John 14:30) and it has no appeal to us, “for if anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15). We are people of another realm and our allegiance is to another King. And by the inspired Scriptures and personal experience, we know “the whole world lies in the power of the evil one” (1 John 5:19) and is under the power of “Satan, who deceives the whole world” (Rev. 12:9).
But unbelievers love this sin-cursed world—a world “that is passing away” (1 John 2:17), a world characterized by “the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life” (1 John 2:16). The reason they love this world is because—and I say this with utmost regret and compassion—they are citizens of Satan’s kingdom, “slaves to impurity and to lawlessness, resulting in further lawlessness” (Rom. 6:19). G. C. Trench described the contemporary beliefs and values that make up the moral environment of our world as,
That floating mass of thoughts, opinions, maxims, speculations, hopes, impulses, aims, aspirations, at any time current in the world which it may be impossible to seize and accurately define, but which constitute a most real and effective power, being the moral or immoral atmosphere which in every moment of our lives we inhale, again inevitable to exhale.
This is why at a most fundamental spiritual and moral level, true Christians have nothing in common with unbelievers (which includes the vast majority of Americans) and are commanded to never be bound together with them in any spiritual, religious endeavor (2 Cor. 6: 14–18). This is why we cannot “COEXIST” with other religions in some unified global spirituality as the bumper sticker suggests (I cringe every time I see it and pray for the poor individual who proudly and foolishly affirms such deception).
Bottom line: We are not of this world. Jesus said, “If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you” (John 15:19).
The Christian’s Allegiance
The vast majority of Americans simply cannot grasp the fact that as Christians we are citizens of another kingdom and our allegiance is to King Jesus. This is why the neo-Marxist ideologies of the progressive left in America intend to marginalize and eventually outlaw biblical Christianity. The two are utterly incompatible at every level. Christians are loyal to Christ, not to the state. God is our moral authority, not man. As the apostle stated, “Our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself” (Phil. 3:20). Therefore, in obedience to our King’s command, we pray for the coming of the kingdom so His will can be done on earth as it is in heaven (Matt. 6:10). And God’s will is always contrary to Satan’s will.
This is why America hates biblical Christianity. This is why so many people scoff at the gospel and do things so exceedingly immoral and wicked. This is why they see nothing wrong with things like abortion and try so desperately to force everyone to embrace the LGBTQ agenda. And this is why they violently resent being lovingly warned— often at the risk of injury—that those who practice these things will never inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6: 9–10). But, for the sake of the gospel, they need our compassion—not our contempt. As Christians, we must remember that were it not for God’s grace, we would be among them. Regrettably, they remain prisoners in the kingdom of Satan, because “the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving, that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” (2 Cor. 4:4).
Excerpted from Chapter 1 of Why America Hates Biblical Christianityby David A. Harrell.