“You were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind” (Ephesians 2:1-3).
Have you ever heard someone use the phrase, “The ways of the world?” The Apostle Paul used that phrase (translated above as “Course of this world.” The phrase indicates that the way the world works is not the way God works. It means that our cultures fall short of God’s ideal. It means that the way in which we carry ourselves in contrary to the ways of God. Notice the order that Paul uses when he expounds on this. Paul notes that we are dead in our “Trespasses and sins.” Then later he defines that as the, “Passions of our flesh” and calls us, “Children of wrath.”
But, what is most important is that right in the middle of these descriptions Paul gives us the source of this evil. He says that living like this follows the “Prince and power of the air.” What is he talking about? He’s talking about Satan.
Now, most people don’t knowingly worship Satan as if they think about him and says things like, “Praise Satan” for this or that. Worshipping Satan is different. Satan’s activity is designed to get you to disobey God in some way and thus, by not obeying God, you are, in effect, obeying Satan. The apostle John supports this idea when he says, “The whole world lies in the power of the Evil One” (I John 5:19). Thus, the world is under wrath, as Paul says in verse three, “…like the rest of mankind.”
Thank God that though we live in the world, Jesus says we are, “Not of the world.” Our behaviors and who we obey are different from mankind. The way not to obey Satan is to cherish God’s word and submit yourself to Jesus.
“God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ” (Ephesians 2:4-5).
How is your behavior, in general? Do you feel that your life is lived in obedience to Jesus Christ? How can you ensure that you are obeying the the Lord each day? Take a spiritual inventory of your daily life and determine to bring great obedience to bear in your life.