The very real effects of cosmic powers and God’s sovereignty over them.

Fear not the things of the world for all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Christ. Surely, He is with us always, to the very end of the age.

Again they sought to arrest him (Jesus), but He escaped from their hands.
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. — John 10:39, Ephesians 6:12-13, ESV

The world teaches us that “seeing is believing”, but many times, it is the things that are unseen that have the largest impact in the observable world. Do not be fooled by the gospel that the world teaches; about calculations and finding proofs. In a universe where the laws of physics aren’t able to explain the existence of life, we must accept that there are indeed forces out there that are affecting everything in the observable universe. From cosmological events to the unpredictableness of the economy, we see an invisible hand shaping it all while a hypothetical substance holds all observable matter together.

There is an unseen force working to shape the world as we know it.

In the realm of the unseen, there is the kingdom of the air that is at work in those who are disobedient (ref: Ephesians 2:2). It is the teachings of this kingdom that indoctrinate people to gratify the cravings of their flesh and to follow their desires and thoughts (ref: Ephesians 2:3). This kingdom is at work shaping every aspect of the world that we now live in. From political structures to economic policies, from the advancement of global media to the categorisation of beliefs. They justify the actions of world leaders and limits the choices of the ordinary man.

I’m not saying that we are called to fight against the rulers of the world, neither am I suggesting a call to arms against the authorities. Rather, I am saying that we should be on constant guard against the very real forces that shape the world that we live in. It is this force that rejected God as their king (ref: 1 Samuel 8:6-7), plunging the world into eternal imperfection (ref: Genesis 3:17).

The spirit of the kingdom of the air knows that no policies will be perfect if it isn’t centred upon worship. It also knows that no economic systems will be perfect if it isn’t centred on giving.

Sure, we now have democracy. Sure, we now have meritocracy. Sure, we have free trade. But are these structures perfect? Is democracy free from demagoguery [1]?  Is meritocracy really an impartial system or is it just a myth [2]? On the other extreme end, is Marxism free from criticism? Will the taking over of the mode of production by the state stifle economic productivity? Will it distort price signals and deprive people off their basic human rights [3]?

There are cosmic forces beyond the physical universe that is in control over all that ever is, was, and will be. These cosmic forces are at war with each other, shaping and influencing the realm of the living; affecting the way we lead our lives. On the macro level, these cosmic forces shape political ideas and alter the economic landscape of the world [4]. On the micro level, these cosmic forces are at war within the individual, tearing them apart with contrasting desires (ref: Galatians 5:17).

What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! — Romans 7:24-25, NIV.

I think we need to re-examine what Jesus meant when He said that, “all authority in heaven and on the earth has been given to Me (Him)” (Matthew 28:18, NIV). “All” authority here leaves no room for doubt. “All” encompasses the seen and the unseen. “All” includes the “kingdom of the air”. Jesus’ use of the word “all” is very literal here.

This is why Paul exclaimed that nothing can separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:38-39, NIV). Nothing at all. And certainly not the kingdom of the air or Satan’s dominions. Nothing can separate us from the promises of God for all authority has been given to Him. It is for this promise that God can deliver us from this body that is subjected to death. It is through Christ that we will regain life.

There is nothing to fear.

Therefore, there is nothing to fear in the realm of the seen nor the unseen. Even though “Heaven and earth will pass away, but the Words of God will never pass away” (Matthew 24:35, NIV). Even though we will be “handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues” on Christ’s account (Matthew 10:17, NIV), there is nothing to worry for “the Spirit of your Father (will be) speaking through you” (Matthew 10:20, NIV). Surely, Christ will be “with us always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20, NIV).

He is sovereign over all authorities in heaven and on earth, the seen and the unseen. Even though the effects of cosmic powers may be great during this present darkness. Even though we may be wrestling against the rulers, the authorities, the cosmic powers, and the spiritual forces of evil, Christ is with us always. He will teach us what to say, He will remind us of His words, He will “prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies” (Psalms 23:5, NIV).

The Lord is our shepherd. We lack nothing.

Footnotes:
[1] — https://www.researchgate.net/publication/236827139_Democracy_Demagoguery_and_Critical_Rhetoric
[2] — https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/oct/19/the-myth-of-meritocracy-who-really-gets-what-they-deserve
[3] — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_socialism
[4] — https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/definition/invisible-hand

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