What did Jesus mean when He called the strength of Satan ‘the power of darkness’? To be accurate, God was not saying that Satan had no power. God was calling our attention to the magnitude of the power of a lie. Can a lie really hurt you? Beyond a shadow of doubt, a lie is able to destroy your life and leave your soul to burn in hell for ever. As we approach the darkest hours of human history, these words of Jesus could not be truer or of greater consequence.
The Absent-minded King of the Universe
Since the dawn of creation, man has always been a victim of his own governance. The problem has never been that man lacked authority and power; the problem has always been that he has had too much authority and power. In the beginning, God gave Adam complete authority over Satan and the entire planet. ~ “Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over… all the earth” (Genesis 1.26). And what did man do with all of that authority? — He gave1 it to the devil. And, it’s the same dismal story that continues repeating itself until today. People say, ~ ‘Why did God give the devil access to the earth to begin with?’ When the truth is that God never gave the devil access, man did. God gave Adam the keys to the universe and in return asked only one tiny thing of him — that he would not eat of the forbidden fruit.
God Reinstitutes Man’s Authority
And what did man do with the almost unbridled authority God gave him? ~ “She [Eve] took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate” (Genesis 3.6). Not only did Adam & Eve disobey the one thing God had asked of them; no, the disobedience was not enough, they had to go further and invite2 Satan to be lord over God’s creation. But God sent Jesus to win back the authority over the world3 through death on the cross of Calvary. Then, God once again gave mankind all authority over Satan and the world. ~ “[Jesus said] Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you” (Luke 10.19).
A Victim of His Own Authority
Jesus not only renewed man’s authority over Satan, He also restored man’s authority over the planet. Read the book of Hebrews… ~ “What is man that You are mindful of him… You have made him a little lower than the angels; You have crowned him with glory and honor, AND SET HIM OVER THE WORKS OF YOUR [God] HANDS. YOU HAVE PUT ALL THINGS IN SUBJECTION UNDER HIS FEET.” For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing [that is] not put under him” (Hebrews 2.6-8). Man is a victim of his own power and authority. The problem isn’t that Satan is too powerful, nor is the problem that man is in any way inferior to his situation and assignment on the earth. — The only problem man has is ignorance. 2500 years ago, the Prophet Hosea wrote about man’s greatest obstacle, he said, ~ “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4.6).
How Authority is Executed
It is a bitter thing to recognize that man is so oblivious to his own condition that the devil is literally able to use man’s own power and authority to defeat him. The greatest area of man’s ignorance is the role and authority God has placed in the human tongue. God’s children have been blinded4 to the fact that God has placed ~ “Death and life [are] in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18.21). They still don’t understand that angels5 and demons are commissioned to act by every6 word man speaks. The Apostle James, the man with the most authority in the church after Christ’s resurrection, said this about the tongue, ~ “If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion [is] useless” (James 1.26).
The Power of Life and Death
The wisest man in the world said this about the tongue, ~ “Death and life [are] in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit” (Proverbs 18.21). Most Christians have no idea that the power and authority God has given to them is, in fact, discharged through the words they speak. What did Jesus say? — He said, ~ “For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says” (Mark 11.23).
The Light of Heaven
You may not think that you have authority over the power of darkness. It may not appear that way to you, and you may often not feel like it is true, yet it is. God told Abraham to call himself a father according to God’s word long before Isaac was born. It may not happen overnight, but, like Jesus said, you will eventually ‘have what you say.’ Begin to exercise the authority God has given to you by speaking according to the King of kings, and you will soon see the dominion of the kingdom of darkness broken over your life and the light of heaven shining through upon you and all you do.
What is man that You are mindful of him… You have made him a little lower than the angels; You have crowned him with glory and honor, and set him over the works of Your hands. You have put all things in subjection under his feet.” For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing [that is] not put under him.
1. Romans 5.12
2. Romans 5.17
3. Matthew 28.18
4. 2Corintians 4.4
5. Psalms 103.20
6. Matthew 12.36
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© L. Jonathan Blais 2022 All rights reserved. Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission.