Theology: THE DEVIL

A BIOGRAPHICAL OF THE DIABOLICAL

 

To properly know him, and to properly know about him we must know where he came from. It would seem from all indications that he was an angel that had higher aspirations. He took a big step and fell flat on his face. (Luke 10:18, “And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.”) We are not told that he is not an angel, so we must assume that he is of that class of being. There are other indications, such as the fact that he was a part of the heavenly throne scene, which is controlled by the angelic host. He was booted out of his heavenly abode and he has been very upset since.

 

His name was Lucifer in the beginning.

 

To begin with we need to know something about angels themselves to know about the devil.

 

1. Angels are created beings: Psalm 148:2-5 Verse 5 mentions of angels and the heavens, “…for he commanded, and they were created.” As created beings they are not to be worshiped and John mentions this quite clearly in the book of Revelation.

 

They are close to us, in that God created them for His purposes, as we. Part of their ministry is to us also. This would show a close relationship, even though we have no knowledge of their presence around us.

 

2. Angels are everlasting but not eternal: Luke 20:36 mentions that the angels never die which indicates their everlasting nature. The fact that they were created, shows that they were not in eternity past, thus not eternal.

It is good that the Lord defeated the Devil or he would continue as he is for eternity future.

 

3. Angels are spirit beings: Hebrews 1:13,14 tells us that they are ministering “spirits,” yet they do seem to appear as humans at times. That is a point to contemplate some time. Just how do they minister, just how do they function as spirit beings in a physical world. We will touch upon some of these things later.

 

4. Angels are powerful: 2 Thessalonians 1:7 Christ will appear with “mighty angels”. The term translated mighty is the term from which we gain the term dynamite. They are shown in Daniel as warring with others, which also demonstrates their might. 2 Peter 2:11 tells that some have “power and might”. See also Psalm 103:20 which speaks of their strength.

 

As We Continue Along Remember That Satan Has These Qualities As Well As The Angels, So You Aren’t Dealing With A Pushover. He and His, are mighty and powerful.

 

5. Angels are wise: 2 Samuel 14:20, “…and my lord is wise, according to the wisdom of an angel of God….” The Devil also is wise in his work. He can make sin look like ice cream.

 

Although the Devil is an angel, he is referred to as a person, and he has personality. Let us look specifically at his characteristics and consider his personality.

 

1. His personality is seen by the pronouns used. Many personal pronouns are used in describing the Devil. (Isaiah 14:16 “thee”; Job 1:8 “thou”; Job 2:1,2 “himself” & “thou”; Zechariah 3:2 “thee”; Matthew 12:26 “he”; Luke 11:18 “his”)

 

2. His personality is seen by his attributes.

 

a. He has intelligence: 2 Corinthians 2:11, “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.” We see here that we can know some of his tools so that we can prepare. Since we can know his tools, and know how to counter him, Why Don’t We? Ephesians 6:11 — We are told to put on the armor of God so that we can stand against his wiles. This is a command and not something that is optional. We are to be confronting the Devil, not giving in to his every whim. He is a deceiver as well as intelligent. Revelation 12:9 “…Satan, who deceiveth the whole world….”

 

You can mark your minds that he will be visiting you through every tool that he can muster up. He will try to sneak up on you when you least expect it. He will attempt to damage, delay, hinder, or stop your ministry.

 

 

b. He has memory: Matthew 4:6 When tempting Christ he quoted scripture. Unless he carries around a computer Bible, he was quoting from memory. That is a scary item to consider. The Devil has committed Scripture to memory. He will use it whenever he can. How much Scripture do you have in your on board memory banks?

 

He is going to remember all those weak points that you have, he is going to remember all those bad things you did so that he can remind the Lord of them, and he will remember to come see you from time to time even if you resist him and find the victory. The passage concerning the Lord’s temptation indicates that the Devil returned to tempt the Lord at other times. He likes to just check you out now and then.

 

c. He has knowledge: Revelation 12:12 tells us that he knows “…that he hath but a short time.” He can reason and think and know all that he can observe about you, so give him a Godly Example To Stick Into His Memory Banks. He knows you. He knows your weaknesses. He knows what angers you. He knows what tempts you toward sin.

 

d. He has will: 2 Timothy 2:26,

 

“And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.”

 

See also the I wills of Isaiah 14:13. He has a will and that will is bent on usurping God in any manner that he can. He wills to destroy you, he wills to destroy anything that we can build, and he wills to destroy anything that will help in God’s overall program.

 

e. He has desire: Luke 22:31

 

“And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat;”

 

He desires to work us over. He desires to defeat us. He desires to corrupt us. He desires to deceive us. He desires to do all that He can to stop us from serving God in a proper manner.

 

f. He has pride: Ezkiel 28:17, “Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty….” 1 Timothy 3:6 warns that the elder should not be a novice lest he fall into the same problem that the Devil had — pride.

 

 

Knowing that the Devil was prideful, and that he is full of pride is one of the best deterrents to the believer being prideful. If the Devil is the seat and beginning of pride then the believer should shun it like a plague.

 

I don’t see many prideful pastors, yet I see some arrogant pastors. What is the difference? Pride is being proud of who and what you are. Arrogance is being proud of who and what you think you are, and letting everyone else know who and what you think you are.

 

g. He has wrath: Revelation 12:12,

 

“…Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea.

For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath….”

 

That wrath will be unleashed in the end time. I am joyful that we believers will not be here to suffer under that wrath.

 

You might also remember that as you walk with God, he becomes angry with you. It is the Lord that protects us, via His ministering angels.

 

h. He has lust: John 8:44 tells us that the devil has lusts and that his children have the same lusts. A good study some time might be to see what he desires, and then make sure that you do not desire the same things. Some of the things he desires, are for believers to stumble, for you to sin, and for others to sin. He desires power, he desires to usurp God (by the way that is what we do when we take control of our lives from the Holy Spirit), and he desires many other things as well.

 

i. He has speech: Job. 1:6-12 is the conversation between God and the Devil concerning Job. He communicates quite well with his coworkers as well.

 

j. He has power: Revelation 13:1-4 tells of the power of the dragon that is given to the beast.

 

3. His personality is seen by the fact that Jesus treated and dealt with him as a person. Matthew 4:1-11 tells of the temptation of the Lord and the use of personal pronouns would indicate Christ felt the Devil had personality. If the Lord treated him with care and wisdom, then we that are not divine ought to take even greater care, and seek more wisdom so that we may face him when he approaches.

 

 

4. His personality is seen in the fact that the Biblical writers treated him as a person. James uses a personal pronoun when he tells his readers to resist the Devil, James 4:7. John also uses personal pronouns in describing the binding of the Devil for the Millennium, Revelation 20:1-7. Zechariah describes a scene where the Devil is involved and waiting to cause problems. Zechariah 3:1, “And he showed me Joshua, the high priest, standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him.”

 

5. His personality is seen in his described possession of parts of the human anatomy. He is mentioned as having a heart. Isaiah 14:13, “For thou hast said in thine heart, I will….” Ezekiel 28:17 also mentions the heart.

 

6. His personality is seen in the description of him as a beautiful person. Ezekiel 28:11-17 Vs. 17 mentions, “Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty….”

 

7. His personality is seen in the fact that he communicates with people and angels.

 

a. Christ himself during the temptations. Matthew 4:1-10

 

b. Jude 1:9 Michael rebuked the Devil when they disputed over the body of Moses.

 

SATAN IS SEEN IN TWO MAIN PASSAGES OF SCRIPTURE

 

We are given information about Satan in Ezekiel 28:12-15 and Isaiah 14:12- 17.

 

Ezekiel 28:12-15. This text speaks specifically to the king of Tyre however most agree that some of the terminology demands that the text go further than the literal king and extend to the Devil, the power behind the king.

 

Terms that indicate the Devil: perfect in beauty, vs 12; full of wisdom, vs 12; you were in Eden, the garden of God, vs 13; you were blameless in you ways from the day you were created, until unrighteousness was found in you, vs 15; his former state was full of wisdom and perfect in beauty, Vs 12.

 

 

There are some other items of information that we can learn from this text as well.

 

He was richly covered with jewels. God did not spare expense when dealing with His angels. It might be good to realize that if the angelic host deserved jewels, what might the believer expect when he arrives in the eternal state. I suspect that we will be surprised.

 

He was into music. This may relate to Genesis 4:21 and Cain’s line. Many believe that the first mention of music in Cain’s line is significant. Not that all music is bad, but that the line of Cain found it and worked with it. It seems evident in our day that the line which is spiritually dead, has

twisted music to the limits.

 

Verse fourteen seems to indicate that he may have been involved in the throne area of the Lord. It may relate to the four creature scene that Ezekiel and Revelation mention. Many writers feel that Lucifer may have been in charge of this heavenly scene before his fall.

 

He was perfect until iniquity was found in him. Contemplate that moment in eternity past when Lucifer rebelled, the moment God saw Lucifer fall. The moment Lucifer realized God knew of His evil.

 

Isaiah 14:12-17 gives us further information as well.

 

Vs. 12 — Fallen from heaven. Luke 10:18 talks of Satan falling as lightning from heaven. (The context is the Lord discussing the disciple’s shock over the demons obeying their commands.) Revelation 12:7-9 speaks of his being thrown out of heaven. Revelation 12:4 indicates that he took some with him.

 

The phrase, “…who didst weaken the nations.” is used by some to prove that there was a pre-Adamic race that fell and was destroyed. This allows for the cave men of science to have a niche in the Biblical scheme.

 

The term used for nations (go’ee = strong 1471) is a general term that can mean as little as a massing of people. It is used of nations, however it probably refers to the angelic host that the Lord had created not some pre- Adamic race.

 

 

The phrase “cut down to the ground” would indicate that he is limited to this world. Job shows us that there is access to the Lord, but this is the only other area of operation that he has.

 

The cause of the fall was pride and his desire to be more than he was 1 Timothy 3:6. Now you know where that phrase, “Pride goeth before the fall.” came from.

 

Vs 13,14 mention the I wills of Satan:

 

1. I Will Ascend Into Heaven” This is his bold declaration of his overall intention, that is, to take over heaven. He desires all that God has and all that God is.

 

2. I Will Exalt My Throne Above The Stars Of God” The stars may refer to the angels. Fallen angels are termed stars in Revelation 12:4.

 

3. I Will Sit Also Upon The Mount Of The Congregation, In The Sides Of The North,” This probably is referring to the heavenly throne scene in some way. (Some suggest Psalm 48:1,2 as a possible interpretation. This would probably better refer to the Millennium but has possibilities if reference to Satan.)

 

4. I Will Ascend Above The Heights Of The Clouds

 

5. I Will Be Like The Most High” It seems that he had in mind that he was going to replace God.

 

It has always crossed my mind that the Lord must have given Lucifer a tremendous amount of power; otherwise Lucifer would have known that he couldn’t usurp the Lord. There must have been in his mind that possibility, or he wouldn’t have attempted such a thing. When you combine his great wisdom, great power and great pride, you must wonder in his conquest of God’s domain, if he were really using the wisdom that had been given to him. This may give us indication of how strong the effects of pride can become. It can give us unreal levels of confidence and make us feel we can do more than we can.

 

You might have drawn the application yourself, but in case you did not, may I suggest that “I WILL” is not a proper phrase to use with the Lord.

 

Not My Will, But Thy Will” is a little more appropriate.

 

 

The Devil’s sentence is set, his future is set, and it will come to pass. Verse 15 tells of his final abode — the pit. Revelation 20:10 tell of his being cast into the lake of fire. John 16:7-11 mentions that his doom is sealed even now, but that the Lord has just not imposed the final punishment. Some of the angels evidently preceded him to the pit, 2 Peter 2:4. Jude 6 mentions that they kept not their first estate.

 

Vs 16-17

 

“They that see thee shall narrowly [squinted eyes] look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man who made the earth to tremble, who did shake kingdoms, Who made the world like a wilderness, and destroyed its cities, who opened not the house of his prisoners?”

 

Two items to note: First there seems to be a loss of his attractiveness and glamor, and secondly the phrase, “who opened not the house of his prisoners” is a sad commentary on his followers. He could not loose his followers from their situation in the pit and Sheol. (His angelic followers are in the pit, while his human followers are in Sheol awaiting The Great White Throne Judgment.)

 

IN SUMMARY THE DEVIL IS

 

1. A Created Being. Ezekiel 28:13,15

 

2. A Perfect Being When Created. Ezekiel 28:12,15

 

3. A Wise And Beautiful Being. Ezekiel 28:15

 

4. A Fallen Being Now. Ezekiel 28:15

 

5. An Ambitious And Prideful Being. Isaiah 14:13,14 (I wills)

 

6. A Usurper. Isaiah 14:14 (Wanted to take God’s place)

 

7. A Cast Down Being That Will Be Cast Into The Lake Of Fire. Isaiah 14:12; Revelation 20:10

 

He is now the prince of this world (Ephesians 2:2) yet he is limited by his Creator to certain things, Job. 1:6; 2:1-8.

 

 

APPLICATION

 

1. He is very wise and powerful. We need to be on our guard for him. He cannot defeat us in the final analysis, yet he can give us some major headaches. He can sidetrack us and destroy our testimony if we allow it.

 

James 4:7 tells us to submit ourselves to God and then it tells us to resist the Devil. If you remember the story of Joseph and Potifer’s wife you will remember that Joseph went out for track, and got himself out of there. We need to do the same when the Devil’s ploys come our way. He is very real and he is very active. We need to resist him.

 

2. Be careful of stories you hear of the Devil. You might remember that Madeline Murray was trying to get all religious broadcasting off the air. Thousands of letters went out to religious organizations asking them to write the Federal Communication people to protest. The FCC received thousands of letters. As it turned out, the whole thing was a fake. The FCC was not considering any action and spent millions of dollars to inform the letter writers of that fact.

 

Other items turn out to be fake as well. In the East there was a Baptist minister that was preaching a series of messages on the Devil. He began getting treats from the local Satanic church. They even threatened his life. He continued to preach, but one day disappeared.

 

The headlines for several days read of the kidnaped preacher and the fear that he was dead. The Devil was receiving a lot of bad press. There was a newspaper article that appeared telling of his brainwashing and the fact that Dr. Narramore had become involved in helping the pastor recover. Come to find out a week or so later the pastor turned up somewhere else in the country. He had taken off with his entire savings account.

 

God received a mass of bad press due to this man’s prank. Some MESS and I’m sure the unsaved world loved it.

 

Be sure that the Devil will do all that he can to hinder your family life, your marriage, your ministry, your prayer life and any other area of life he can get at you in. Beware and resist him.[1]

 


[1] Stanley L. Derickson Ph.D. B.A. (n.d.). DERICKSON’S NOTES ON THEOLOGY: A STUDY BOOK IN THEOLOGY.

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