The kingdom Jesus topples

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When we think about God’s kingdom in relationship to other kingdoms (see previous post on the question of whether the gospel is anti-imperial), the focus is only secondarily on visible political kingdoms in our world. The primary kingdom Jesus confronts and overthrows is the kingdom of Satan. How did Satan claim a kingdom in the first place, and what is Jesus doing about it?

1. Satan claims the kingdom that was rightfully ours, as humans. In Genesis 1:26-28 (see also Psalm 8:4-8), we read that God originally created man and woman in his image, with the authority to rule over the rest of his creation. God, the ultimate creator and king, appointed humans to reign on his behalf over the rest of the world. But in Genesis 3, the Serpent enters the picture and deceives Adam and Eve into taking their cues from Satan instead of from God. Ever since, humans rule the…

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