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Points/Counterpoints on Satan

Satan is an angel.
Satan can only appear as an angel; he is not, in fact, an angel.

Satan once was Lucifer.
The Bible never states or assumes this.

Satan fell from perfection.
No verse indicates or assumes this.

Satan is a cherub.
No, Satan is a serpent, an ancient dragon.

Satan is the ruler of Hell.
Hell is Satan’s future prison, not his kingdom.

Satan’s angels are demons.
No angel is ever equated with demons; demons are something else entirely.

Satan is responsible for all of the evil in the world.
Man is wicked enough; Satan is probably responsible for surprisingly little of the world’s evil, though all of it glorifies him.

Many common ideas about Satan, I simply have difficulty finding any evidence of in the Scriptures. Knowing one’s enemy is quite important in warfare. Are you willing to push aside the traditional view of Satan in favor of a biblical one?

10 replies on “Points/Counterpoints on Satan”

To elaborate on each would take a great deal of time; suffice it to say, all of the boldface points are merely assumptions. Somewhere in history someone’s opinions about Satan became “orthodox Christian doctrine” and were forced upon the Bible without any good reason.

The easiest way to refute such assumptions is to read the Bible without any preconceived assumptions.

So, take the famous “Lucifer” passage. People say, “That’s a description of Satan’s fall.” Okay, prove that. Satan is not mentioned in the passage, and the only person explicitly mentioned in the passage is a human king.

Likewise, the passage about the “anointed cherub that covereth” (or “that guards”). The only anointed cherub that guards I can find in Scripture was standing outside the Garden of Eden to keep men out. Satan is never called a cherub. Heck, he’s never even called an angel of any kind, despite the assumption that he’s a “fallen angel.”

Colossians 2:4-8 warns of the very real possibility that human wisdom can muck up Christian doctrine; if the Bible truly is our authority in determining truth, then I simply must declare that most of what people believe about the origin & nature of Satan is complete and other baloney.

Man has attempted to worship & obey angels, despite the fact we are not angels.

Man worships & follows God, despite the fact we’re not God.

I’ve seen dogs taught to follow, obey, and protect people, despite the differences.

Satan is a very powerful being, but I just don’t think we can make the presumption that he is or ever was an angel when the Scriptures do not explicitly say it. That he has angels is no more an argument for him being an angel than the fact that God Himself has angels.

Problem is, most theology books in their sections on Satan contain all of these traditions and half-truths (if they teach that Satan is a person at all — that fact doesn’t play nice in liberal theology). I’ve found very little support in establishing a truly biblical view of Satan. It’s either a waste of time in some people’s eyes or too divisive or whatever to others. :(

Rik,

I am finding similar difficulty with actual biblical refereneces that describe the original fall from heaven of Satan and his angel followers. Questions like why did God make the seas so dangerous for sailors are incredibly complex questions and may need the understanding of a powerful Satan to be able to answer fully. Your assertion that man is wicked enough does not address these type of climatic catastrophes. I would be interested in anu other biblical reference supporting the power of satan and his original downfall. I can find many refereneces to his future and final downfall

No doubt there is a lot of evil Satan is responsible for, but mankind can claim most of it. That was my point. Indeed, I believe that Satan is the leviathan, and so the danger of the seas becomes obvious when we see that the seas are his abode, so to speak.

Also, don’t bother looking for verses about his original fall. There are none. What’s wrong with believing he was created as the Adversary? If it was God’s plan to have an Adversary, then the Lord could still declare the world “very good” by virtue of the fact that His plan is being fulfilled.

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