Many people in this world do not believe in the devil. Even more do believe in the devil—yet don’t realize what great and frightening power he has!
I know that is a strong statement, but it is true. You can prove it from the Bible. If you stop and think about some key biblical verses about Satan, you will be shocked by the extent of his power in our world.
God says that Satan has deceived the whole world (Revelation 12:9). He also calls the devil “the god of this world,” which means the whole world worships him (2 Corinthians 4:4). If Satan can do all that, he must have tremendous power.
Isaiah 14:12 describes the fall of the devil from his status as an archangel, and it says this being “didst weaken the nations.” The Emphasized Bible translates that, “O crusher of nations.” The American Standard Version says he “didst lay low the nations.” The Jerusalem Bible uses the phrase “enslaved the nations.”
Who today really believes that Satan has the power to crush nations, or lay nations low, or enslave nations?
Do you believe Satan has power like that?
And think about this: If he can do that to the nations, what can he do to you?
The Prince of the Kingdom of Persia
Daniel 12:4 shows that this prophetic book was written for “the time of the end.” In verse 9, the angel speaking to the prophet says, “Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.”
This prophecy was recorded some 2,500 years ago. For 2½ millennia, its meaning has been closed up and sealed. But we are living in the time of the end today, and God has unsealed this prophecy! He has revealed its meaning. (You can prove this from our free booklet Daniel—Unsealed at Last!) That is a gigantic miracle! What a thrill and a wonder to be able to understand this prophecy.
Satan is always ferociously fighting to keep God’s Word sealed.
Daniel recorded how Satan even fought to prevent this prophetic book from being recorded in the first place! God had given the prophecy to Gabriel—one of three archangels, the highest-ranking angels, mentioned in the Bible—to deliver to Daniel. But as Gabriel was delivering the book to Daniel, he was attacked by Satan the devil!
In Daniel’s prophecy, Gabriel is recorded as saying, “But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia” (Daniel 10:13; New King James Version).
This “prince of the kingdom of Persia” is the devil. Only he has such power to be able to fight against Gabriel! The Bible shows that Satan had been Lucifer, another of those three great and powerful archangels, before he rebelled and became God’s adversary. He still has tremendous power. When he fought Gabriel, Gabriel had to call on another archangel, Michael, to come and help him.
Clearly, Satan has awesome power. Gabriel and Michael are the most powerful beings in the universe except for God the Father and Jesus Christ—and yet Satan was there fighting against them very effectively. God made the archangels do the fighting against this former archangel, and they did eventually defeat him.
Why is Satan called “the prince of the kingdom of Persia”? The kingdom of Persia in this prophecy is the world-ruling Medo-Persian Empire, which has been written about at length in history books. Satan is called the prince of Persia because he had that much control over that world-ruling empire!
Satan does get control over world-ruling empires. People may scoff at that idea, but it is the truth, and you can prove it to yourself.
Fighting the Devil Today
Daniel’s prophecy continues, “Now I have come to make you understand what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision refers to many days yet to come” (Daniel 10:14; nkjv). “Many days” indeed! In fact, it wasn’t even unsealed for another 2,500 years!
Gabriel was delivering the prophetic message of this very book of Daniel, and he told Daniel it would explain what would happen to “your people” in the latter days. Daniel was from the tribe of Judah of the nation of Israel. This prophecy is for the end-time nations that descended from the biblical nation of Israel! (If you haven’t proven which nations those are, request your free copies of The United States and Britain in Prophecy and The Key of David.)
Why would Satan fight so hard to stop this message? He obviously sees the great value of the book of Daniel and wants to thwart God’s purpose by stamping it out!
Think about this for a moment. Satan is alive today, and he still hates the book of Daniel. If he would fight so hard to prevent the book of Daniel from ever being written, what do you think he would do today when God has revealed this book and what it means for us in the latter days? Don’t you think he would fight even harder to stop this book today? Of course he would! That’s the way Satan operates. He is a spirit, and he is alive, and he hates anybody who talks about these prophecies of the end—because they describe how his works are about to be destroyed.
If you understand what this means, you realize that you cannot hang on to this truth unless you are willing to fight and conquer the devil. Ephesians 6:12 describes how God’s people are locked in battle with spiritual wickedness and powers in high places on Earth! Most people read over such scriptures and don’t believe them—or, if they do, they certainly don’t act like it.
Do you and I believe this book enough to fight for it?
The Prince of Grecia
After Gabriel delivered this prophecy, he went back to fighting the prince of Persia. But he first warned Daniel that “when I am gone forth, lo, the prince of Grecia shall come” (Daniel 10:20).
As this verse makes clear, Satan was not also called the “prince of Grecia” at this time. This is referring to Alexander the Great of the Greco-Macedonian Empire, who was about to come on the scene. Satan hadn’t yet gotten control of Alexander, but you can be sure Satan was going to viciously fight for all the power God would allow him to have! After all, God had prophesied he would come, and Satan wanted to stop those prophecies from being fulfilled! The devil worked to help the Medo-Persian Empire continue just to thwart God’s Bible prophecies.
That effort failed. God has a master plan, and He’s not going to let this ex-archangel stop that. Just as God prophesied, Alexander’s empire conquered the Medo-Persian Empire. Lange’s Commentary says that the book of Daniel was actually written right around the time Alexander was rising in power and the Persian Empire was beginning to fall, and there was a great clash between the two.
Though Satan couldn’t stop that prophecy from happening, he did eventually get control of Alexander as well. We know that because the Bible says all of those great world-ruling Gentile empires were heavily influenced by Satan. He has guided them and even controlled them in many cases. So Satan probably would have been called the prince of Grecia, or of the Greco-Macedonian Empire, at a later time.
If we don’t recognize just how great Satan’s power really is, how could we possibly avoid being deceived—or worse—by that great being?
Think again about the sequence of events revealed in this passage in Daniel. Satan attacked God’s Work—Gabriel’s message to Daniel—and then he went back to the kings of Persia. Satan knows what is most important on this Earth: God’s Work! God’s message—God’s revelation. Satan always attacks God’s Work first! Then he goes back to the kings of the Earth and does all he can to influence them or even control them.
That is how he operates.
Ezekiel 28:12 says, “Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord God; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.” This is an interesting verse because it starts out talking about a king, and then it starts talking about a being “full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.” That’s not talking about a human king. It’s talking about Lucifer, who became Satan the devil.
In this verse, Satan and “the king” are used interchangeably. What does that mean? It means that Satan was really the king of Tyre!
“Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so …” (verse 14). God Himself gave Lucifer a position right over His throne, as a covering cherub! He was right there with God, probably the most powerful of the three archangels the Bible mentions. Later, God sent him to rule the Earth, and put one third of the angels under his authority. It was after that point that Lucifer turned to evil.
“Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity [lawlessness] was found in thee” (verse 15). Lucifer wouldn’t submit to the law and government of God! Verse 16 goes on to say that he became filled with violence. He is the most violent being in the universe.
Do you believe these scriptures? Most people do not. And the Bible explains why: It’s because Satan rules this world and has deceived the whole world! That is why there is so much confusion in this world. That is why it is such a dangerous world.
When Satan rebelled against God, he started a war. That left the Earth and the universe “without form, and void,” a state of waste and decay—a state God never created (Genesis 1:2—the word was should be translated became; see also Isaiah 45:18).
The passage in Ezekiel continues, “All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more” (Ezekiel 28:19). God describes Satan as “a terror.” He is really the one behind all the violence and terrorism and evil in our world today!
Can the United States win its “war against terror” without God on our side? No we cannot. Satan is too strong and powerful. It is also clear, if you know Satan, that you will get nowhere trying to win that war through negotiation. Satan is the king of terror! Anyone who thinks he can be overcome without a real war is completely ignorant of just how powerful the devil is!
That is the clear message of the Bible. But if you tried to explain that to a scholar in this world, he would say that was nonsense.
The good news is, Satan’s power will come to an end. As that verse says, “never shalt thou be any more.”
The Revelation 13 Beast
Revelation 13 provides one of the Bible’s most vivid descriptions of Satan’s power.
Here is a vision the Apostle John received of a beast, representing a political power that has dominated human history. “And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy” (verse 1). This is a frightening world power!
This beast represents the Roman Empire, which started in 31 b.c. This world-ruling empire absorbed all the empires that preceded it and occupied their territory. Compare verse 2 with Daniel 7, and you see the components of those other empires: the head of the lion, like the Babylonian Empire; the legs of the bear, like the Persian Empire; the swiftness, cunning and cruelty of the leopard, which symbolized Alexander’s Greco-Macedonian Empire. Its seven heads include all seven of the heads of the four beasts described in Daniel 7.
Daniel likened those other empires to animals on Earth. But this beast cannot be described in such simple terms. It is so dreadful, there’s no beast on Earth like it!
Revelation 13:2 concludes, “the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.” This is why this political beast has “the name of blasphemy”—because it is empowered by Satan! He hates God and speaks blasphemy against God all the time! (verses 5-6).
What influence Satan has! This is why we have never had peace in this world. Men don’t know why we can’t have peace—but the Bible makes it clear.
“And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death …” (verse 3). That is when the Roman Empire was defeated in a.d. 476. But that was not the end of this beast! Verse 3 continues, “[A]nd his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.” After that deadly wound was healed, the Roman Empire surfaced in various forms down through the ages even to our present day! It is a religio-political combine that is the most dreadful beast that has ever been!
In fact, it has been resurrected six times , and the seventh and final resurrection of this beast is occurring right now!
The whole world wondered after this beast! This is talking specifically about the very last of the resurrections of the Roman Empire. This power is rising right now on the world scene! You need to understand that.
Look at John’s prophecy of what we are about to see: “And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?” (verse 4). People will actually worship the dragon!
This will be a combine of church and state. It will become the most frightening beast this world has ever experienced—a superpower of superpowers.
Nothing will change these prophecies. We can’t wish them away. We must face reality!
Conquering the Devil
Revelation 13:5 shows that this final resurrection of the beast will only last 42 months. Then the good news comes! That beast is going to be stopped. After a short 3½ years, Jesus Christ is going to return and conquer it!
This monumental event of all history will happen in our lifetime!
We must respect how great Satan’s power is, and realize that only God can conquer it. Satan will do all he can to conquer us, and God wants us to draw on His power to conquer Satan instead. All those who are called during this present age must do so.
The Bible tells us how to protect ourselves from the devil very effectively. We must learn how to overcome Satan. If we submit ourselves to God and resist the devil, he will flee from us (James 4:7). God will show us how to conquer.
God assures us in His Word that we can conquer Satan. And He shows us how. With God on your side, you won’t have to fear the devil. You will always be a step ahead of him.
Those who do conquer and overcome the devil enjoy the kind of successful, happy, abundant lives that God wants all of us to live!
Why won’t men listen to God? Why won’t they quit worshiping the devil and heeding his message, and refusing to hear God’s message?
You can turn your life around. You can conquer any problem that comes your way—if you will just obey what God tells you to do. That is the best thing you could ever do in your life.
From the Archives: Royal Vision, January-February 2009