Although the Bible identifies Satan as the "prince of the power of the air" and the ruler of this world (Ephesians 2:2; John 12:31; John 14:30; John 16:11), God maintains overall control as "Lord of heaven and earth" (Matthew 11:25). While He gives the devil considerable latitude in what he does for now, God retains the right and power to intervene.
The biblical record shows that during this age God uses His power to intervene sparingly, often letting the natural course of events work out His purpose and plan for mankind. Remember that Jesus told Pontius Pilate, "You could have no power at all ... unless it had been given you from above" (John 19:11).
"The God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the all-glorious Father" is the main subject of Ephesians 1:3 and Ephesians 1:17, Revised English Bible. His throne is "far above all government and authority, all power and dominion, and any title of sovereignty that commands allegiance, not only in this age but also in the age to come. He put all things in subjection beneath His [Jesus'] feet" (Ephesians 1:21-22, REB).
Israel's King David recognized God's sovereignty: "The Lord has established his throne in heaven, his kingly power over the whole world" (Psalm 103:19, REB) and "The Lord looks down from his sanctuary on high; from heaven he surveys the earth" (Psalm 102:19, REB).
The Babylonian ruler Nebuchadnezzar eventually came to see these same truths after God humbled him for seven years. "His [God's] sovereignty is everlasting and his Kingdom endures throughout all generations," said the king. "All who dwell on earth count for nothing [by comparison]; he does as he pleases with the host of heaven [the angelic realm] and with those who dwell on earth" (Daniel 4:34-35, REB; compare Daniel 5:21).
The first two chapters of Job show the earthly authority of the devil and how it fits into God's supremacy over the universe. Although the patriarch Job suffered immense tragedies because of the devil's activities, the narrative shows that in no case could Satan do anything that God did not allow. God remains in ultimate control.