Why does God Keep Satan Around?

I recently received this very intriguing question: “Why does God keep Satan around?”

To answer this question, it helps for us to know about the story of redemption that God began writing since the creation of the world.

Somewhere in history (presumably at the fall, when Adam and Eve first sinned) Satan was given a “legal right” or “dominion” over the earth.

In Ephesians 2:2, Paul talks about Satan, calling him: “the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience.” Certainly, God was still in control. But consider this:

In Luke 4:6-7, Satan shows Jesus all the kingdoms of the world and tempts Jesus with this offer: “To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.” (Emphasis mine.)

I don’t think Satan was lying. If he were, Jesus would have known his bluff, and the temptation would not have been legitimate. But then everything changed! Jesus died and rose from the dead, destroying the powers of darkness (Colossians 2:15). He triumphantly declared, “All authority on heaven and earth has been given to me” (Matthew 28:18).

Yes, Satan continues to exert power — but with limited authority.


God Is In Control

This brings us back to the original question: Why does God keep Satan around? Because a much greater plan is unfolding!
God has given the ministry of building His Kingdom to us, the Church. It’s our role, as His sons and daughters, to live for God and exercise His rule in the name of Jesus.

Could God instantly end Satan’s power? Sure.

But God is maximally glorified as we, His Church, exercise His authority in our fight against the powers of darkness (Ephesians 6:12). All authority has been given to us on heaven and on earth. We can be confidently fervent, knowing the power we hold because of Christ Jesus.

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, who shed His blood for us, Satan is already defeated! Let’s believe it and act like it.

Satan works hard to blind Christians to the authority they hold over him. The bold authority that God delegates to all believers upon their salvation.

We may likely experience great pain during this intense battle. But let your trials serve to heighten your ability to worship God now, and even more when you finally get to see Him face-to-face!


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Matthew is a Christian writer and speaker with a passion for the church to be united, strengthened, and unleashed to spread the good news of Jesus to every corner of the world. With a focus on apologetics and spiritual growth, Matthew offers a fresh voice. Matthew holds an M.Div from Talbot School of Theology.

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