World Domination or Dominion?
In the course of our lifetime we have beheld a new phenomenon, or the return of an old one. It is the meteoric rise of dictators. We say truly when we say that this has been phenomenal. In a few short months , from nowhere and nothing, from ostracism, ridicule, and almost general suspicion, such have risen to a place where not only their own nations are at their feet, but all nations are holding their breath while these dictators speak. How is it explained? What is the principle basic to it?
It dates back to the eternal counsels of God. In those counsels God determined to gather up the dominion of this world under the Headship of His Son. Adam was "a figure of Him that was to come" (Romans 5:14).
"He hath appointed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness in a man whom He hath ordained ..." (Acts 17:31).
"And He charged us to preach unto the people, and to testify that this is He Who is ordained of God to be the judge of the living and the dead" (Acts. 10:42).
"For there is one God, one Mediator also between God and men, himself man, Christ Jesus" (1 Timothy 2:5).
(See also Ephesians 1:9, 10; 4:10; Colossians 1:16-19; Hebrews 1:8; 2:6-10).
Thus it has been made known that the dominion of this world and of all which, being beyond it, relates to it is eternally vested in a MAN: the One Who is known to be the Son of God, Who became Son of man. He is the "heir of all things." The inheritance is the "inhabited earth to come" (Hebrews 2:5). But there is another who has assumed the role of rival to God's Son, and whose ambition has ever been world-dominion. The background of this world's history, that is, the spiritual and unseen background of the cosmos, can be summed up in a few quotations from Scripture.
"Cain was of the evil one, and slew his brother" (1 John 3:12).
"Ye are of your father the devil ... he was a murderer from the beginning" (John 8:44).
"Which of the prophets did not your fathers persecute? and they killed them which shewed before of the coming of the righteous One; of Whom ye have now become betrayers and murderers" (Acts 7:52).
"A man planted a vineyard, and set a hedge about it, and digged a pit for the wine press, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into another country. And at the season he sent to the husbandmen a servant, that he might receive from the husbandmen of the fruits of the vineyard. And they took him, and beat him, and sent him away empty. And again he sent unto them another servant; and him they wounded in the head, and handled shamefully. And he sent another; and him they killed: and many others; beating some and killing some. He had yet one, a beloved son: he sent him last unto them, saying, They will reverence my son. But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours. And they took him, and killed him, and cast him forth" (Mark 12:1-8).
The governing matter is that of the inheritance vested in God's Son. The next thing is a long history of jealousy working out in murder wherever that Son is in view in type, prophecy, or reality.
We next come to satan's means, or instrument, of domination. It is also in man. As God's Son is the Man according to His mind and after His heart (using human language of God) so, as we have sought to point out, satan sought to adapt, and succeeded in adapting, man to his thought for his purpose. The history of man is a long-drawn-out effort to reach to heaven independently of God, the course of Cain: power, rule, domination, worldly glory, reputation, etc. It is the story of man coming to the fore and occupying the place of honor. It is the pride of satan working through the poor, worthless, ruined human race (as viewed from God's standpoint). Oh, what an indictment of so much that is brought into Christian work to make a success of it, even by those who mean to be so consecrated! Think of the value that is attached to degrees, titles, and orders in the propaganda work of the Christian organizations. To carry weight, have influence, attract interest, make an impression, we find a feverish quest for people of degree, title, of standing as among men, and when we see these letters and qualifications on the announcements, advertisements and programs of Christian effort, we may well ask, 'But what has that to do with the work of God? What place does that have in Holy Spirit activity?' Degrees, titles and honors may be all right in their own realm, if they are really earned and the result of genuine qualification as before the best standard of honorable men; but it is of the essence of antichrist to make them currency for profit in the things of God! These are strong words, but we will prove a point. It would be well for all Godly men to suppress and hide their degrees when they come into the presence of holy things, and so holy a God. Here, only spiritual values are recognized. But let us proceed.
satan has ever in his mind world-domination through man, and the full-grown expression of this mind will be antichrist. Now let us see several things which are said about antichrist.
"Little children, it is the last hour: and as ye heard that antichrist cometh, even now have there arisen many antichrists" (1 John 2:18).
"Who is the liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist" (1 John 2:22).
"Every spirit that confesseth not Jesus is not of God: and this is the spirit of the anitchrist" (1 John 4:3).
"Let no man beguile you in any wise: for it will not be, except the falling away come first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, he that opposeth and exalteth himself against all that is called God or that is worshiped; so that he sitteth in the temple of God, setting himself forth as God" (2 Thess. 2:3, 4).
"Whose coming is according to the working of satan with all power and signs and lying wonders" (2 Thess. 2:9).
From these passages we learn four things:
1. antichrist is firstly a spirit.
2. antichrist is the expression of a principle.
3. antichrist is a type of man.
4. antichrist has a kingdom or world-domination in view.
No. 1 relates antichrist directly to the evil powers, "not of God." No. 2 means that the glory of man is ever the factor which governs.
No. 3 means that this spirit and principle operate by way of dominant "ego", and intense soul-force.
No. 4 indicates what it is antichrist is after.
(continued with # 21)