Satan: Neither Prince nor Ruler of This World
The consummation of the kingdom of God is eschatological. However, the present reality of the kingdom is certainly not, nor is that of the present reign of Jesus Christ as King of kings.
It is a great comfort to the Church that at the right hand of God is seated He Who reigns supremely over all things – an Almighty King! Our King rules over the Church, certainly, but His reign is also a mediatorial one, extending not merely over the Church itself, but over the entire world – yes, even the universe! All this, given to the Son by the Father as the reward of His suffering and obedience even unto death.
From Scripture, we see clearly this teaching that Christ Jesus not only is the King of kings, but that “he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.” I Corinthians 15:25. [emphasis mine]
As of His resurrection, all power and authority have been given to Him.
Brethren, we must love one another, yet we also must insist on the mediatorial Kingship of Jesus Christ. The Church must insist and proclaim this glorious, and most comforting truth. He reigns, now and forever more, on David’s throne, over this world and the universe. It must be so, else He is neither the Prophet, the Priest nor the King of kings.
Sadly, there are many preachers of the Gospel, and even more believers, who deny Jesus is now King, except in a spiritual sense in the hearts of men. Denied is not only the fulfillment of the Davidic Covenant but also that Jesus is the Prince and ruler of this world. Instead, concerning the latter, it is believed and taught that the devil, Satan himself, is the prince and ruler of this world. Such teaching is neither comforting to Christians, nor is it true according to Scripture, the final authority on all matters.
In John 12:31, we read in reference to our Lord’s crucifixion:
Now is the judgment of this world; now will the ruler of this world be cast out.
It is very important to note, that in this verse, the word translated ‘Now’ means present, immediate. There is no future tense, it means from here on out!
I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no claim on me; – John 14:30
And yet again, in reference to the Holy Spirit:
And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. – John 16:8-11
Satan has been described as “a big, ugly dog chained.” Indeed. He can do nothing apart from the permission of God.
In every instance where Scripture names Satan as “prince” of this world, it teaches more emphatically and clearly that since the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus, Christ Himself has crushed, trounced and dismissed Satan as prince of this world.
Think about it brethren. If Satan were the prince of this world, no man would respond to the Gospel. If he controlled all men as prince and ruler, he would forbid even the hearing of it.
Yet, because Christ has triumphed over death and risen for our justification before the Father, through faith alone, and is now seated at His right hand as King of kings – and because, as promised, He sent His Spirit to comfort and guide His elect, Satan is no authority at all. He cannot stop the salvation of men.
Yes, the unregenerate are controlled by sin, they know of nothing else. They are sin in and of themselves. Sin is their master. Yet every time Christ Jesus is lifted up by the preaching of the Word in the Gospel, men, by the power of God the Holy Spirit, may be drawn unto Christ and be saved – and Satan has no say in the matter.
No, my dear friends, it is a false teaching that Satan is the prince and ruler of this world. He has neither power nor authority to prevent any from coming to Christ.
There is only one Ruler, Prince, King and Lord of and in this universe, and His name is Jesus.
and from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. – Revelation 1:5,6
Regardless of the influence Satan may have in this day and age, Christ, not Satan, rules this world.
And here is the lie many in the Church have swallowed:
Satan is now “the ruler of this world,” and until the Lord casts him out he will continue to rule. – John MacArthur
Dear John, Jesus has already cast him out.
Those who insist Satan is the prince of this world give him far too much credit and exaltation, all the while, robbing Christ of His rightful praise and glory as the only true Sovereign, King of kings, and Lord of lords. – I Timothy 6:15