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in which you formerly walked according to the age of this world, according to the ruler of the authority of the air, the spirit now working in the sons of disobedience. (Ephesians 2:2)
In which you formerly walked. Walk: (הָלַךְ halak) in integrity (Heb. tōm) a state of blamelessness being free of guilt. (Prov. 2:7) In the Bible, the expression “to walk” is figurative and illustrative and can mean to follow a certain course of action, as “Noah walked with God.” (Gen. 6:9; 5:22) Those who walk with God follow the life course outlined by God’s Word and will find his favor, that is, be pleasing to him. Pursuing such a life course makes you different from most unbelievers. The Greek New Testament uses the same illustrative expression, contrasting two different courses of action sought by one before and after becoming a servant of God. (Eph. 2:2, 10; 4:17; 5:2) Similarly, “running” is also used to symbolize a course of action. (1 Pet. 4:4) God tells us that the prophets in Judah “ran” though he did not send them, yet they took the prophetic course, prophesied falsely. (Jer. 23:21) Paul gives us a visual picture of the Christian course in terms of “running.” He compares it to a race that a person must run while also obeying the rules of the race if they are to win the prize. – 1 Cor. 9:24; Gal. 2:2; 5:7.
According to the age of this world. The meaning here of world (κόσμος kosmos) is not as it often is, with its carnal selfish cares, temptations, and immoral desires. It does have the sense of the men of this world since their beginning, meaning that the Christians in Ephesus were walking (lived) as all men of the world have walked. The men of this world have walked in trespasses and sins.
According to the ruler of the authority of the air. The air here (ἀήρ aēr; from ἄημι aēmi) has authority or power (ἐξουσία exousia), and there is a ruler (ἄρχων archōn) over it. It is Satan the Devil; the one Jesus Christ called “the ruler of this world.” (John 12:31) Clinton E. Arnold writes, “The second evil influence is the devil, whom Paul describes here as a ‘ruler’ (archōn). This is a common term for human rulers throughout the Greek Old Testament (lxx) as well as documents and inscriptions from the first century. This archōn is clearly not a human ruler, but a supernatural power because his domain is ‘the air’ and he is subsequently characterized as a spirit. The Greek text of Daniel also uses this word to refer to angelic powers: the ‘prince’ of Persia and the ‘prince’ of Greece. The Synoptic Gospels describe the devil as ‘the prince of demons,’ and John’s Gospel terms him “the prince of this world.’”
Arnold goes on, “The ‘air’ was widely spoken of as the dwelling place of evil spirits in antiquity. One magical papyrus reads: ‘Protect me from every demon in the air.’ A Jewish text from the first century also illustrates this belief: ‘For the person who fears God and loves his neighbor cannot be plagued by the aerial spirit of Beliar since he is sheltered by the fear of God.’ Satan is here understood, then, to be the ruler of an army of evil spiritual powers who work at promoting disobedience to the purposes of God among humanity.” Some scholars and translators have felt that Paul has copied from Jewish or pagan sources and spoke of the air as though it were the dwelling of the demons, which Satan controls. However. The “air” referred to here should not be confused with “the wicked spirit forces in the heavenly places,” in which they dwell. – Ephesians 6:11-12.
When Paul wrote this epistle to the Ephesians, Satan and the demons still had access to heaven, even though they were unfavorable in God’s eyes. Satan and the demons were not to be cast down to the earth until shortly before the end; likely, this is what will cause the great tribulation. (Revelation 12:7-10) The “air” here concerns man, not Satan and the demons. Paul is using the “air” to convey the idea of the influential arrogance of selfishness and disobedience manifested by man, who is alienated from God. Paul says elsewhere, “Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God.” (1 Cor. (2:12) Yes, the spirit of the world or the air is the mental disposition of man and is found everywhere. From the day we are born we are being influenced by this “air” as it shapes our worldview.
 Clinton E. Arnold, Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary: Romans to Philemon., vol. 3 (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2002), 312–313.
 The best explanation of this can be found in W. D. Davies, Paul and Rabbinic Judaism. Some Rabbinic Elements in Pauline Theology (3d ed.; London: SPCK, 1970 [originally published in 1948]), ch. 2: “The Old Enemy: The Flesh and Sin,” 17–35.