John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary

Verse 19 (1 John 5:19)

And we know that we are of God ,.... The sons of God, and regenerated by him; this is known by the Spirit of God, which witnesses to the spirits of the saints that they are the children of God; and by the fruits and effects of regenerating grace, as love to the brethren, and the like:

and the whole world lies in wickedness ; that is, the men of the world, the greater part of the inhabitants of it, who are as they were when they came into it, not being born of God; these are addicted to sin and, wickedness; the bias of their minds is to it, they are set upon it, and give themselves up to it, are immersed in it, and are under the power of it: or "in the wicked one"; Satan, the god of this world; they are under his influence, and led according to his will, and they are governed by him, and are at his beck and command; and this is known, by sad experience, it is easy of observation;

"And cannot comprehend the things that are promised to the righteous in time to come: for this world is full of unrighteousness and infirmities.' ( 2 Esdras 4:27 )

- John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary