(Literally means “abode of all demon”, from Greek “pan-”, “all”, and “daimon”, “demon.”)
Make no doubt about it, Satan loves to promote chaos and oppression. If he can do it on a worldwide scale, all the better. The current troubles are an expression of that. With this in mind, I would like to address the issue of globalism. Let’s be clear, worldwide cooperation and the sharing of knowledge is a good thing; although it does depend on the laying aside of vested interests and the sharing of accurate information. That’s not what I mean by globalism. Globalism is an agenda promoting a form of one world government. There are different expressions and means towards this aim.
I’m sure you remember this song, Imagine, by John Lennon:
“I hope someday you will join us
And the world will be as one”
Atbest, it is naively altruistic. What it does, is to present a desire for a philosophically driven globalism. It is a cultural expression of the exaltation of mankind. It looks beyond political and national boundaries and it has values (if you can call them that) which must be accepted at all costs. Opposition is vilified, legislated against where possible and those who promote its cause see themselves as elites. There is nothing new about this, however, in the exaltation of its cause, it pronounces lies to be truth. It speaks of choice when it means oppression of the weak and helpless. It speaks of life when it means death. It is out of this that the culture of death has come with its abortion and eugenically inspired euthanasia. Gender dysphoria is no longer a dysfunction but is seen as desirable. This is a part of the climate that we live in today. As God’s kingdom people, we must continue to push back the confusion and darkness with the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
There is another form of globalism which expresses itself politically, usually with a military threat behind it. Remember the Soviet power block? This has been reflected in the history of the world. It seems that there is always a power which is ready to rise up and take control; power for power’s sake. In this form of globalism, money is increasingly one of the keys to its implementation. It would be more accurate to say “Mammon”, which, as Jesus explained, is a god to be worshipped.
Also, there are religious systems which seek to dominate the whole world. In our present-day radical Islam is the most prominent example. Usually, religions serve to facilitate political power, combining belief systems with subservience to governmental power. Perhaps the most significant example in history is the Holy Roman Empire which, under the Emperor Constantine, brought a counterfeit form of Christianity in to serve its unifying purpose. This was the beginning of the catholic principle, a nominal form of Christianity in which everyone within the boundaries of the empire was deemed to be Christian.
So we have the three major powers seeking world denomination. Often there is a combining of forces for the sake of the common aim. Culture and religion serve the aims of ungodly government but they are uneasy partners and, in the end, their partnerships implode.
Historically, the first attempt of globalism is seen in the Biblical account of the tower of Babel. We have one world government, unified culture and one religious expression. God intervened. Language is probably the greatest definer of culture. And so, when God confused the languages it resulted in a scattering and no more facility to govern or participate in a common religion. God has put a principle of division in Satan’s kingdom; every attempt at globalism has the seeds of division and failure in its foundations. Satan’s kingdom is divided, it must fail.
Let’s press our understanding further, let’s see how this principle plays itself out. Firstly, we need to recognise that human ideas and structures do not stand alone. There is a Biblical principle in which spiritual powers stand behind the scenes, influencing and manipulating. None of this takes away the responsibility of those in power from their decisions, nevertheless it is essential to see the bigger picture. The Bible has many examples of this concept, both in the Old and New Testaments but the place that we can see it most clearly worked out is in the Revelation. The three powers are identified through the visions of the Beast from the sea (anti-God government), the Beast from the earth (false prophet i.e. religion) and the Prostitute (anti-God culture). The Beast from the earth serves the Beast from the sea, whilst the prostitute rides on the back of the Beast from the sea. The principle of division is seen in Revelation 17 when the Beast from the sea turns on the Prostitute.
How then does this all work out? Let’s not underplay the push for globalism; it’s real, it affects us all, sometimes it results in persecution but… Let’s remind ourselves that Satan’s kingdom is divided; it was God who put the principle of division into its very fabric. That has never changed. It is commonly believed that in the last days (depending how they are defined) there will arise a One World leader called the Antichrist. He will usher in a new world order opposed to God. In the final moments of history, a literal battle will take place; the battle of Armageddon. Of course, every Christian believes that Christ will win but I suggest that we put away ideas that are more to do with urban mythology than the Truth. There is nowhere in the Bible that suggests this One World ruler. In fact, if he could be identified it would cause problems regarding Jesus’ teaching on the End. If we could identify this Antichrist, we would be able to work out the time of the End, which, as we know is not given for us to know. Our real battle is in the spiritual and unseen realm. There will always be wars and there has to be a last battle but the passage in Revelation 16, which mentions Armageddon, speaks of a gathering of God’s foes. However, no battle takes place because “it is done” as Rev 16:17 tells us. Let me address another urban myth; just before the time when things get worse, Jesus will come for His people and rescue them from the Tribulation by what is called the Rapture. It’s a nice idea but it doesn’t match the words of Jesus in the parable of the weeds.
“As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil.” (Matthew 13:40-41, NIV)
Clearly, if anyone is to be left behind is it not God’s people? Do not put your hope in the wrong place but, rather trust in the efficacy of Jesus’ prayer for His disciples and for all who follow in their footsteps:
“My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.” (John 17:15, NIV)
There is another kind of globalism. It’s called the Kingdom of God. Different rules apply. There are no geographical, racial, political, philosophical or religious boundaries. It exists where God’s rule is not compromised. It’s not fully here yet but it is on its way. It will be fully realized when Jesus returns and there are no more weeds.
“…The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.” (Revelation 11:15, NIV)
This Kingdom is not compromised by our lack or sinfulness. It is totally good. We are called to take this Kingdom with us wherever we go, it’s within us and it cannot fail. This is our mission, accomplished by the grace of God and by the power of His Holy Spirit. The darkness is being pushed back and wickedness is being shaken out of this world. Good will overcome evil. His Kingdom is near.
“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.’ He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death” or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” (Revelation 21:3-4, NIV)
So, there we have it: no more pandemonium. The rule of God’s salvation purposes has come; the rule of the peace of Christ in its absolute goodness and truth.