Who is the ruler of this world?

God or Satan?

Matthew 4:8-11

"Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and the glory of them. And he said to him, “all these things i will give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, " Begone, Satan! for it is written, ‘The Lord thy God shalt thou worship and him only shalt thou serve.’ "
Then the devil left him; and behold, angels came and ministered to him. "

What role does the heavenly Father play in this world as opposed to Satan?

When good things happen, or when things are given to us, how do we know it’s from God rather than from Satan?

[quote=Caldera]God or Satan?

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Satan is the prince of this world.

That doesn’t mean he is without dissenters in this world, who resist his efforts when they can. :smiley:

That includes all of us. Well, that makes sense because we are supposed to look beyond things that are temporal and toward things eternal. If we rely strictly on the faith of the birds and the flowers, then we can completely dissociate our spiritual condition and even emotional condition with worldly issues. Then we can fly. (Just kidding – worldly goal.)

What role does the heavenly Father play in this world as opposed to Satan?

When good things happen, or when things are given to us, how do we know it’s from God rather than from Satan?

First, we test the spirits, but that’s kind of hard to know how to apply sometime. People more learned than me can answer definitively.

I try to take “do not judge” seriously, to the extent that no matter what happens, I find no value whatsoever in determining whether something in the past was sinful or not. Therefore satan’s lies do not affect me as much, I hope, because I can do nothing about the past except learn from it and go toward the future.

Romans tells us that neither the past, nor future, can separate us from the love of God. That’s because God is love NOW, and has already paid your price with His son. To tell you that Jesus doesn’t want to walk with me because I’ve sinned, is counter to the Good News.

Therefore, I think satan keeps us believing mantras of the past, which play on our original sin through our humanity, and this includes worrying about whether a particular answered prayer was by God or satan. Whatever it is, you play the cards you’re dealt and go from there. Life gives you lemons, make lemonade, or maybe slice it and use it form Magaritas!

Satan also scares us about the future. Planning for the future, dreaming about the future, and all is great. The Lord is the Lord of hope, faith, and love, so really we as Christians should not worry about the future. We make plans, and they either turn out or they don’t. We don’t have control over the future. We influence the future by everything we do in the present, including being paralyzed with fear about the future not turning out The Way We Wish or being bound to guilt over past sins that the devil would have us dwell on.

I think God and satan both use human beings as vehicles. By our being made in the image of God, and then by original sin, we share in tendencies toward both good and evil. Therefore, it’s like cartoon where there’s a little angel by one ear and a little devil by the other. We have to decide whom to believe in any given situation, because by our very nature we always consider the opposite of everything we’re told. Therefore there is always a good and bad component of the possible influence any given message from the world (including verbal, situational, and otherwise) will have on me.

Alan

[quote=AlanFromWichita]Satan is the prince of this world.

That doesn’t mean he is without dissenters in this world, who resist his efforts when they can. :smiley:

[/quote]

Yes,. Jesus calls Satan the prince of this world John 12::31 and 16:11
As I understand it the thinking is that when Adam sinned he put himself, and all mankind, under the power of Satan, who was originally called Lucifer and given charge of the earth.
In Baptism we are transferred from the kingdom of Satan into the Kingdom of God. So the Kingdom of God exists as an occupation of Satan’s kingdom which we are charged to extend.
At the second coming there will be a new heaven and a new earth, and Satan will be left with the old one.

Now I don’t think that is infallible Catholic doctrine, but I think it is a simplifed version of the way many people see it.

[quote=Caldera]Matthew 4:8-11
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:twocents:
This is how I like to think of that passage: Satan is tempting Jesus to follow in his footsteps in breaking away from the will of the Father. The will of the Father is for people to have the freewill to make their own decisions and make their own mistakes.

If Jesus broke away from the Father’s will, then Jesus could claim the world for himself. The Son of God could make the Earth a much nicer place if he just imposed order. However, this would mean imposing his own will over the will of human people. This is against the will of the Father.

This is a very powerful temptation. It is the temptation of the well-intentioned to claim power to make things nicer for everybody. It has happened over and over in history and it never does anyone any good. The temptation (in its extreme) can be summed up as “Peace through tyranny”.

This is a very powerful temptation. It is the temptation of the well-intentioned to claim power to make things nicer for everybody. It has happened over and over in history and it never does anyone any good. The temptation (in its extreme) can be summed up as “Peace through tyranny”.
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Nice link. :slight_smile:

I agree with you. Reminds me of the Iraq war. :frowning:

[quote=Megatron]Peace through tyranny.
[/quote]

[quote=IesusDeus]I agree with you. Reminds me of the Iraq war. :frowning:
[/quote]

Which part?
When the tyrannical Saddam was in power, Iraq was relatively peaceful, is that what you mean? rhetorical question

I won’t spend much time defending the foreign policy of the USA and UK other than one comment. Bush has said the goal is for the Iraqi self-rule. The purple finger elections are good evidence he intends to follow through with that. If USA and UK follow through (and I have no reason to believe they won’t) than the Iraq war should be seen as a defeat for tyranny.

Satan does indeed rule the world, God cast him there as a prison for rebelling against Him. God provides deliverance from Satan and will ultimatly triumph over him. Also, it depends on what you eman “good”. If you mean good as in making the honor roll or hitting a home run good, then it is simply our free will. If you mean good as in prayers being answered or miracles happening good, then it is from God. Satan cannot interfear in our prayers, in our conversations with God. Lucifer has great power, but not enough power to conquer God and His Kingdom.

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