When Paul says that “God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth,” that is virtually what happens in the new birth. And here is the key to liberating people from the captivity of the devil. God grants repentance—that is, he awakens the life that sees the ugliness and danger of sin and the beauty and worth of Christ, and that truth sets the prisoner free. It’s what happens when a person in the dark fondles an ebony broach hanging around his neck, and then the spiritual lights go on and he sees it’s not a broach but a cockroach and flings it away. That’s how people are set free from the devil. And until God does that miracle of new birth, we stay in bondage to the father of lies because we love to be able to tell ourselves whatever we please.
An excellent analogy for our reaction to sin and reminder that our warfare is spiritual.