Testing: kingdoms

temptation_of_christ8 Then the devil took him up to a very high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in their magnificence, 9 and he said to him, “All these I shall give to you, if you will prostrate yourself and worship me.” 10 At this, Jesus said to him, “Get away, Satan! It is written: ‘The Lord, your God, shall you worship and him alone shall you serve.’” 11 Then the devil left him and, behold, angels came and ministered to him.

All this I will give to you…  The view from the mountain recalls Moses’ view of the promised land from Mount Nebo (Deut. 34:1–4). The devil’s dominion over all the world, implied here and explicit in Luke 4:6, is stated also in John 12:31 (cf 2 Cor. 4:4; 1 John 5:19). France (2007, 135) considers that Satan’s offer is mere bluff and bluster – or did in fact Satan have some dominion over the world?  Several times in the NT Satan will be described in such language, e.g., “ruler of the world” (John 12:31, 14:30, 16:11; 2 Cor 4:4; Eph 6:11-12; 1 John 5:19; Rev 12:9-17).  The gospels seem to take for granted that Satan does have such power but that is always seen within the ultimate victory of God. Continue reading