One of the reasons why Jesus died was to set us free from the trappings of this evil age. The apostle Paul states it this way: “who gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father” (Galatians 1:4 NKJV). To the Colossians, he further wrote, “He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13-14 NKJV). To the Galatians he states an intention, “that he might deliver us”; while to the Colossians he writes in the past tense, “He has delivered us from the power of darkness.” Either way, our deliverance is complete.
This is an “evil age” controlled by “the evil one” who spurns his wiles around the intricate systems of this age. The Greek word for “age” as used here does not refer to a time but an order or system, and in particular to the current world system ruled by Satan (Rom. 12:2; 1 John 2:15, 16; 5:19). Satan has a great influence over this world’s systems; its culture, beliefs, philosophies, and values through which he entangles many (1 John 5:19). He subtly uses his power to ensnare and make people his victim.
We need to be freed from this evil age because Satan, the chief influencer of the age does everything possible to force the values of the world upon us. He wants us to imbibe the values of this age by all means. His desire is for us to think, talk and behave in the mannerisms of this evil age. But Jesus died to give us freedom from all the trappings and entanglements of this evil age.
Satan ensnares his victims in various ways. First, he ensnares by making one love the values, ideas and systems of the world. He makes sure our hearts are hooked on to the things of the world. This is why John warns us against loving the world. “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (I John 2:15-17 NKJV).
Second, Satan entangles many into the insatiable taste for materialism. Slowly, but steadily, he encourages us to be sucked into the materialistic system of the world. Once we acquire the appetite for this world’s goods, then we become entangled in the spirit of materialism. For some, they develop an insatiable appetite for cars, for others, it is the love for clothes, shoes, jewelry, sex, fame, and still others, the love of money. The problem then becomes, when to stop or where to draw the line between what is reasonable and what is not reasonable. This is why Paul advised us that godliness and contentment is great gain (1 Timothy 6:6). On the other hand, he further warns us thus, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:2 NKJV).