There are two parties or ruling powers in this world. One belongs to God, and the other belongs to “the wicked one,” or Satan. Those of God are His true believers, who are of, from and for Him. It makes no difference what the business, status, or position is of those of the second, larger group, or what name they’re known by—they’re all under the dominion of the wicked one. They help his works and his cause. This group includes all unbelievers in God.
Believers who want to be ready to deal with the attractions and enticements Satan has made to draw men away from God, and for all the obstacles and hardships that are to come, need to know two things. “We are of God” (1 John 5:19) is the first thing. They were born of Him, and are loved and redeemed by Him. He has called them to become His sons and daughters. The second thing is that those born of God are a testimony against the wicked one. But even though believers have been born of God, they are still in the flesh. Therefore, they may be seduced by the wicked one and have to be brought under God’s discipline.
We also need to know that “…the whole world lieth in the wicked one,” (v. 19), meaning that those of the world are under Satan’s dominion. Believers don’t hesitate to avoid the world, nor do they fear its hatred nor crave its recognition—because they’re of God. But the world has lost its bond of love for Him. Nevertheless, godly dominion belongs to Jesus and it can dispel all forces of evil that may come against believers. No one else has ever had power even close to what Jesus Christ has. And no power on Earth can match the power of our Lord. He has all power.
“…whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but He that is begotten of God keepeth himself and that wicked one toucheth him not” (1 John 5:18). The wicked one’s touch is sin. But he can’t reach any believer who protects himself by walking in the Light and staying in fellowship with the Father and His Son. The believer who lives according to his new nature doesn’t sin. “We know that we are of God and the whole world lieth in the wicked one” (v. 19). Therefore, the children of God should be set apart from the world. Those who fail to separate end up in the wicked one’s domain. Then Satan, the father of sin, finds a reason and a way to lead God’s children into sin.
Jesus Christ defeated Satan and all powers of darkness. He broke the source and power of sin in their lives because of what He did on the Cross. He gives believers enough power to avoid being overcome and defeated by sin, self and the devil. Therefore, no matter what they are going through, they know there is a power greater than Satan to help them have victory. As a result, God’s children will declare that they are absolutely sure they’re of God, and that the whole world system lies in the hands of Satan. While this may seem very bold to those who do not know God, there’s something very real about it that can’t be explained to the world.
Believers can also fearlessly claim that “whereas I was blind, now I see (John 9:25).” Sinful habits were destroying their life, but, in Christ, they are now free. Every believer who walks with God has this blessed inner knowledge. But those who disobey Him lose this knowledge and their sense of confidence. If they’ll return to God and honestly confess their failure, He’ll restore them, and they’ll regain that knowledge that only the Holy Spirit can give. This means that the believer’s accuser won’t be permitted to charge them with anything. The heavenly Father will deal with them about their failures instead.
Children of God can hold up Christ as their shield by faith, and rotate this shield in every direction in a way that Satan can’t come in or near them. He won’t be able to work on the believer through temptation, nor to hurt his comfort, joy and tranquility in even the slightest way. The wicked one is not all-powerful—only God is all powerful. There’s nothing within His nature that He can’t do!
“and that wicked one toucheth him not…” (v. 18). He’s no longer able to attack the believer to wound him to the heart, or to overwhelm and destroy him. Satan can’t tempt what is born of God—because he can’t find anything in the child of God to tempt! He might try to sift him and repeatedly strike him, or harass and grieve him a lot. But Satan can’t touch his life. The Holy Spirit will give believers His power to overcome the powers of darkness, but God must first be uppermost in their hearts and lives. It doesn’t matter how strong Satan and his demons are, God can give believers the power to overcome.
It is the Son of God Who leads believers to His Father, where they can experience His love and encouragement. Believers are made one with God by the Holy Spirit who abides and works within them. He gives power and strength to walk differently from others in this world. Those He has given it to are forever glad the Son of God came. They now have a heart to trust and rely on Him, and He keeps them by His power. All who are without God are caught in a satanic snare. But, while they are still alive, they can be rescued by the preaching of the truth—so that they’ll be able to live and do His will.
If a believer is being overwhelmed by the powers of darkness, it means Jesus is not reigning. The believer will be in great trouble if he turns his back on Jesus and follows the powers of darkness. Jesus defeated the powers of darkness at the Cross. He is the One who can keep us so the wicked one can’t touch us—because God keeps us by His power. Therefore, what we need to keep our faith in is the power of God, and not the evil one!
[Image credits:Featured image (when applicable) Jackson David & Gursimrat Ganda/unsplash; Raphael Souza/unsplash & Republica/pixabay; Adam Whitlock/unsplash; David Banning/unsplash; Pricilla Du Preez/unsplash; Christian Erfurt/unsplash]