I have been thinking about this since reading John H. Walton’s second book in the Lost World series, “The Lord World of Adam and Eve.” And in Proposition 14 is goes into how the serpent of Gen 3 is seen as a chaos creature that is from the non-ordered and brings out disorder. Now I know this entity really to our knowledge has no name as Devil, Satan (both of which mean adversary/opponent) and even Lucifer (which means the morning star) are names we have given this entity of evil and chaos. Thus I ask, should we see Satan as not only a fallen angel but also as a chaos creature that promotes disorder and evil in God’s creation?
The devil is a scapegoat. A creature given power by our attempts to evade responsibility. There is no power in evil but that which is granted by our own self-deception, fear, and delusions.
What we learn from the science of chaos is that chaos and order are necessary ends of a spectrum which makes life possible. Either by itself is death, and only in the balance can there be the self-organization which is the essence of life.
I won’t deny that the Devil is in a sense a self-reflection of our sinful nature when we act independent from God. And yes at times we give Satan more credit then he deserves (that is if he deserves any at all lol) and a lot of out issues are our own fault within our own sinful selfish nature, which was no different from that fallen being when he tried to claim to be God and take it all for himself.
Satan (in the Hebrew Bible) is a servant of God, who tests the resolve of the faithful (Book of Job, also compare 2 Samuel 24:1 to 1 Chronicles 21:1) rather than an opponent of created order. The title ‘adversary’ does not imply he is the adversary of God, but of man’s good inclination. The Angel of the Lord is described as an adversary in Numbers 22:22.
In the NT it is definitely true that Satan is a chaoskampf creature, what with him being a seven headed dragon in Revelations 12:9, a description which hearkens back to Ancient Near Eastern descriptions of chaoskampf creatures.
What would you think if a man learned that there was a child eating monster in the neighborhood and so he decided to have some children so that he could feed the bad children to the monster and so the good children would be ever so grateful and praise their father forever?
If that sounds ok to you then the only thing I am grateful for is that you were not one of my parents.
Otherwise, perhaps you can see from this what is wrong with some of the ideas we see in Christianity which has the devil coming from a rebellious angel. If such were the case then it seems to me that a God with any sort of decency would be expected to get his own house in order before bringing children into it. Thus the fall of man only makes sense to me if that was the origin of evil itself – that it came from Adam & Eve who were the children of God.
I think the archangel Lucifer was doing His job to challenge living things in the world so that they could learn and grow. But Adam and Eve chose to pass the responsibility for the fall to him and with the responsibility comes power and with blame comes enmity. Thus Lucifer was assigned to a new task, the devil – an embodiment of evil to be sure, but ultimately a scapegoat, which is why he is so often portrayed with goatlike features.
So, from what I’m getting from you is that Satan isn’t a rouge agent of pure evil who rebelled against the LORD for sinful and selfish purposes but a figure acting in accord with God’s divine providence and plan? That to me seem’s to be the mindset that the Jews had when in view of The Satan in Job for example. And I won’t deny that God does use “evil spirits” within the OT to get his purposes done, but I suggest these creatures are rouge entities that still have to submit to their Creator an from my understanding in Rev. 5:13. That these entities know that God is God.
Have you every met anyone who was highly intelligent and lacked any sense of reason? They are totally chaotic, and always generating new, senseless ideas. When Jesus conquered Satan on Easter Sunday, had he any reason in his being, he would have given up. Yet he did not. He clings to his kingdom, knowing he was defeated by the King of Heaven and that he has no power to keep his followers from leaving.
Yes. I think everything in the curse of Genesis 3:14-19, were consequences of the fall and for the purpose of restoration. This includes Lucifer becoming the adversary, i.e. Satan.
My suggestion is that like many things in the universe, their existence serves God’s providential purpose, but that doesn’t mean that everything they do is the will of God.
I can see that point of view. Also I hopefully plan to get this book by Christmas and read it which may help me answer a lot of question I have still about demon and Satan.
Also @mitchellmckain today I was reading in Mark 5:1-13 about Legion and how the demon(s) came and bowed down before Him. The talk with the two in Mark 5:6-12 was interesting to me. Espically Mark 5:7 which says, “and shouting with a loud voice, he said, “What business do we have with each other, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I implore You by God, do not torment me!””
The famous quote that instantly comes to mind is; “The greatest trick the devil pulled off, was convincing everyone that he doesn’t exist”. Many of my friends, some faithful Christians don’t believe in the devil’s existence, or hell for that matter! I believe that is a major oversight, or underestimation of the Truth.
As for hell itself? I think Jesus was quite clear in His descriptions. “…enter the narrow gate.”
Jesus had His go-round w/ the “master of iniquity”, several times. One of my favorite quotes is; Luke 10:18. “I saw satan fall like lightning from heaven.” Why this quote, if not for the biggest case for Lucifer’s fall from Grace? And fall to the earth, as Jesus’ “Tempter”; Satan offering the “world” in exchange for homage to him. Why homage? Satan wants what is God’s. As always!
The Gospel to me, is the true indicator for the reality of satan. Rather than just being the personification of evil. I do believe that satan has no power unless we give it to him, personally. But to say he is without power is wrong. There are many, many willing to hand everything to him, and do! And “free will” is a guarantee that we will be subject to collateral damage. Prayer and fasting limits our exposure to that damage.
And, Jesus, referenced several names: Satan “adversary”, Devil “slanderer.”; The evil one, Enemy, Liar, Father of lies, Murderer, Ruler of this world.
I think it’s safe to say, satan exists as an entity. And as the “enemy” of God, and us. God “allows” satan to rule this world. But, he has no power over us but persuasion. And our only hope in combating him is; humility and the Most Holy Name and Words of Jesus. Amen