“Powers,” “Principalit…

“Powers,” “Principalities,” “gods of the nations,” and “elemental spirits of the universe,” though not necessarily evil, are prone to distort God’s purposes for them. They can corrupt and enslave humanity (Isa. 42:17; 45:20; Gal. 4:9; Eph. 2:1-3; 6:12; Col 2:15). Sin is thus not only an individual matter, but involves groups, nations, and structures. Such organizations can have a “spirit” that incite persons to do evil they would not have chosen on their own. Governments, military forces, economic systems, educations or religious institutions, family systems, and structures determined by class, race, gender, or nationality are susceptible to demonic spirits. Human violence toward each other, enmity between peoples, the domination of men over women, and the adverse conditions of life and work in the world – these are all signs of the sin in humanity and in al creation (Gen 3:14-19; 4:3-16; 6:11-13; 11:1-9; Rom 8:21).

From Confession of Faith in a Mennonite Perspective, Article 7. Sin, Footnote 2.


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