An Introduction to The Devil
Who is the Devil?
Simply, the Devil is a spiritual being, who has arrayed himself as the ultimate enemy of God and His followers. Beyond that, too many people either know too much or too little about the Devil. For some people, the Devil has become a focal point curiosity, almost to the point of obsession. For others, he is an adversary that is frequently underestimated, maybe even forgotten entirely. This article series is aimed at both extremes. God intended that we be aware of our ferocious enemy and respect him; however, he did not intend for us to become overly fearful or unduly concerned about the Devil. Therefore, in this series we will consider the following points of concern regarding the Devil:
Before we continue our study, it is crucial that we recognize the following warnings of Scripture:
The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law. (Deuteronomy 29:29)
The revealed light of Scripture is not exhaustive. It does not answer every question or satisfy every whim of curiosity. Yet, its illumination is ample for guiding us into all truths that "pertain to life and godliness" (II Peter 1:3). Therefore, whenever we encounter the wall of shadow, where revelation does not guide, we dare not proceed, confident in the knowledge that it is neither necessary nor beneficial.
Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, and not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, grows with the increase that is from God. (Colossians 2:18-19)
We should tread even more lightly, recalling that the subject of angels has lured some ancient saints into apostasy. When one convinces himself that he has discovered or deduced truths that none previous have seen, our hair should stand up on the back of our neck! When in arrogance we decide that we are equipped to go where no saint has gone before, we are standing on the precipice with our toes dangling over the edge. Let us make sure that we do not "intrude" into matters that God set outside our sphere of concern.
Remind them of these things, charging them before the Lord not to strive about words to no profit, to the ruin of the hearers. ... But shun profane and idle babblings, for they will increase to more ungodliness. ... But avoid foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they generate strife. (II Timothy 2:14-16, 23)
Although we may cautious and carefully draw inferences based upon a scattered set of passages, we must be careful that we do not become dogmatic about conclusions that are unnecessary, and therefore constitute speculation. Furthermore, we must be careful that we do not become divisive, pushing our academic inferences upon people, which neither affect nor profit them.
With these warnings set before us, to help us judge all that we are about to consider, let us carefully collect and consider what the Bible reveals about the Devil.
ImmortalLike us, the Devil is an immortal being, who is subject to an eternal destiny. Matthew 25:41 warns of those who will suffer "everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels". Likewise, in Revelation 20:10 we learn that the Devil will ultimately be condemned to hell, and he will there be tormented in that "lake of fire and brimstone ... day and night forever and ever".
The Devil and his Work among Us - Thought Questions
- What is the origin of the Devil?
- What do his common names mean, "Satan" and the "Devil"?
- Can you find any other names or references to him in Scripture? What is their significance?
- How was the Devil a "murderer from the beginning" (John 8:44)?
- What did Satan think of Job (Job 1:6-11; 2:1-6)? Do you think Job was Satan's primary target? Or, was he trying to accuse someone else?
- What does God expect us to know about Satan?
- How does a lion stalk his prey? What can we learn about the Devil, since he is compared to such a lion (I Peter 5:8-9)?
- Should we tease, joke, or make light of the Devil (Jude 1:8-9)?
- What power does Satan hold over men, and how does he wield it (Hebrews 2:14-15)?
- What tools has God given us to fight Satan (Ephesians 6:10-18; James 4:7)?
- How do we overcome Satan (Revelation 12:9-11)? Explain.
Questions and Comments can be sent to us using this form. Logo, name, and graphics are copyrighted by © insearchoftruth.org 1999, 2012. All other content is hereby released to the public domain, and therefore, may be freely copied and distributed without inquiry. However, it would be appreciated if you provided a link back to our site.
All material on this site is informational only and provided "as is" without warranties, representations, or guarantees of any kind. insearchoftruth.org disclaims any and all implied warranties respecting your judgment before God. Only Jesus can stand beside you in final judgment; however, insearchoftruth.org is unqualified to guarantee His representation. Use of insearchoftruth.org is entirely at your own risk and is not a substitute for conducting your own honest Bible study and search for truth.