Is Satan behind the rulers of the darkness of this world? Yes. First John 3:8 tells us that sin is of the devil. Ephesians 2:2 tells us that the prince of the power of the air works in the children of disobedience. The "air" is thought by some to refer to this world and others believe that it is an actual place where Satan and his demons reside. Regardless of what one believes, this prince has power to carry out his plans whether through himself directly or through those he manipulates.
How much have things changed? Not too many years ago students were told not to talk unless called on and don't chew gum in class. Today, they're warned not to bring guns or knives to school. Big change. What happened? Could if be that no one says the Pledge of Allegiance at the beginning of the school day? Prayer is no longer allowed. Our once shared values and beliefs have been whittled away. In the 1962 Supreme Court case Engel vs Vitale, the justices banned prayer from public schools. On September 12, 1960, just two years earlier, President Kennedy made a famous speech supporting separation of church and state while he was running for the office that he won.
What was this infamous prayer that caused such a shift in American values? Here it is: "Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence on Thee and beg thy blessing over us, our parents, our teachers, and our nation." Has the absence of prayer made a difference? People who remember "the good old days" know that our society has taken a radical shift. The younger ones may actually believe it has always been like this. This? This is crime, venereal disease, premarital sex, illiteracy, suicide, drug use, public corruption, and any number of societal ills that our modern society engages in.
There are statistics to prove that our society has taken a dramatic shift since 1962. But there's no need to look it up. Just look around you. Are we no different than the Jews of Christ's days? Do we, too, want less of God? I pray that that is not so.