Angelology — The Doctrine of Angels
Bible Doctrines — Beliefs That Matter
by Mark G. Cambron, D.D.
OUTLINE FOR CHAPTER VIII
A. Their Personality.
B. Their Origination.
C. Their Enumeration.
D. Their Habitation.
E. Their Characterization.
F. Their Perfection Attributes.
G. Their Gradation.
H. Their Division.
A. Good Angels.
B. Bad Angels.
A. The Names and Descriptive Titles of Satan.
B. The Personality of Satan.
C. The Origin of Satan.
D. The Career of Satan.
E. The Location of Satan.
F. The Character of Satan.
G. The Work of Satan.
H. The Limitation of Satan.
I. Our Attitude Toward Satan.
Angelology is the doctrine of angels.
“Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire” (Ps. 104:4). “The angel of theLORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them” (Ps. 34:7). “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou madest him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honor” (Ps. 8: 4, 5). “Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me” (Mal. 3: la). “Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matt. 25:41). See also Genesis 19:1, 15; 24:7; 28:12; Psalm 103:20; Hebrews 1:7, 14; Matthew 11:10; Luke 7:27.
1. Translation. The Old Testament Hebrew and the New Testament Greek translate the word angel as “ambassador, messenger, deputy, and ministers.”
a. For Human Messengers. From one human to another: “When the messengers of John were departed, he began to speak unto the people concerning John” (Luke 7:24a).
b. For Human Messengers Bearing a Divine Message. “Then spake Haggai the LORD’smessenger in the LORD’s message unto the people, saying, I am with you, saith the LORD”(Hag. 1:13). See also Galatians 4:14.
c. For Impersonal Providence. This may be some physical deformity. “Lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure” (II Cor. 12:7).
d. For Bishops or Preachers. “Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks” (Rev. 2:1). See also Revelation 1:20; 2:8, 12, 18; 3:1,7, 14.
e. For Demons Without Bodies. “When the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils [demons], but by Beelzebub the prince of the devils [demons]” (Matt. 12:24; 25:41).
f. For Heavenly Beings. See Genesis 18.
g. For One Pre-eminent Angel: The Angel of the Lord. “The angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed” (Ex. 3:2).
2. Notation. The term “angel” is not a personal name, but rather a title describing an office.
There are three angels whose personal names we know:
1. Lucifer. This is the unfallen name of the Devil. Satan is his fallen name. “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which did weaken the nations!” (Is. 14:12).
2. Michael — Tue Archangel. According to the Scriptures there is only one archangel. He is mentioned in the books of Daniel and Revelation. Michael has to do with the resurrection; it is he who shall sound the trumpet, and not Gabriel. “Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee” (Jude 9). “The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel [Michael], and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first” (I Thess. 4:16).
a. Prince of Daniel’s People, the Jews.
b. Head of the Heavenly Army of Angels.
3. Gabriel. This name is found in Daniel and Luke. “I heard a man’s voice between the banks of Ulai which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision” (Dan. 8:16). “The angel answering said unto him, I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God; and am sent to speak unto thee, and to shew thee these glad tidings” (Luke 1:19). See also Daniel 9:21-27; Luke 1:26, 27.
A. Their Personality.
They are personal beings, and not impersonal influences, such as thoughts, ideas, etc. Paul writes that “peradventure” God will give “those that oppose themselves” “repentance to the acknowledging of the truth . . . that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will” (II Tim. 2:25, 26). See also II Samuel 14: 20; Revelation 12:9, 12; 22: 8, 9.
B. Their Origination.
They are created beings and superior to man, but they are not as the artist paints them, having wings, and the like. No doubt they have bodies, but not like our bodies. If our eyes were not blinded by the fall of man, we might be able to see them. Eve saw Satan as an angel of light. Angels are not eternal beings. While they will live forever, yet they have not lived forever, because they are created beings. They were created like man, but not as human beings. A Christian does not become an angel when he dies, but, in Christ, he is greater than angels can ever be. “By him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him” (Col. 1:16). See also Nehemiah 9:6; Genesis 18:8; Luke 24:37.
C. Their Enumeration.
“Ye are come into mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels” (Heb. 12:22). “Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?” (Matt. 26:53). Six thousand composed a legion; the Lord could have called for seventy-two thousand angels for aid had he so desired. See also Daniel 7:10; Psalm 68:17.
D. Their Habitation.
A great many angels dwell in the heavenlies. “In the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven” (Matt. 22:30). See also Matthew 18:10; Luke 2:13-15; John 1:15; Galatians 1:8; Revelation 5:11; 7:11.
E. Their Characterization.
1. Angels Are Spirits. “Of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire” (Heb. 1:7). See also Hebrews 1:14; Psalm 104:4.
2. Angels are Corporeal. Although being spirit, they have bodies of some kind and perform bodily acts. Mary “seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain” (John 20:12). See also Genesis 18:1-8; 19:1-3; Judges 6.
3. Angels Are Masculine. It is an error to say they are sexless. They are always manifested in the form of man. Masculine pronouns are always used in connection with them. “And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted. And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: He is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him” (Mark 16:5,6). See also Matthew 28:2-4; Luke 1:26.
4. Angels are Celibates. There is no record of angels ever marrying angels. “In the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven” (Matt. 22:30). The quoted Scripture does not mean that we will be sexless, but that we will not marry.
F. Their Perfection — Attributes.
1. They Are Deathless. They will never die, or cease to exist. They do not grow old. “They which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage: neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection” (Luke 20:35, 36).
2. They are Immutable. There is no matter in them that can change.
3. They Are Illocal. They are not subject to limitation, or space. We are (Acts 17:26). However, they are not omnipresent.
4. They Are Mighty. They are not omnipotent (almighty). They are mightier than we are, but are inferior to God. “To you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels” (II Thess. 1:7). See also Acts 5:19; 12:5-11, 23; Psalm 103:20; II Peter 2:10, 11.
5. They Are Wise. They possess super-human intelligence, yet they are not omniscient (all-wise). One of the purposes of Paul’s preaching was “to the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God.according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Eph. 3:10, 11). See also II Samuel 14:17-20; Matthew 24:36; Mark 13:32; I Peter 1:10-12.
6. They are Subordinate. They are always subject to God. Even the Devil is in this category. There is nothing he can do, but by the will of God. “[Jesus Christ] is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him” (I Peter 3:22). See also Hebrews 1:4-8, 13, 14.
G. Their Gradation.
1. The Angel of the Lord. This angel is presented as no other angel in the Scriptures. He possesses a position no other angel could occupy. He is the Lord Jesus Christ himself. He presented himself to Hagar, Abraham and Gideon.
2. The Cherubim. This is the plural of cherub. They are mighty beings, always connected with the throne of God. They were present in the garden of Eden. They were placed there to keep Adam and Eve from re-entering the garden. According to Scripture, they seem to be more than just angelic beings, for they are connected with God as a symbol of God himself. Images of cherubims were made of gold and overlooked the mercy seat. The mercy seat is a type of Christ; thus, the cherubims are pictured as overlooking the work of Christ in love and light.
3. The Anointed Cherub. No doubt this was Satan in his unfallen estate. “Thou are the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire” (Ezek. 28:14).
4. The Seraphim. These angelic beings are mentioned only in Isaiah. They are attentive unto the LORD of Hosts. “In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings….Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from off the altar” (Is. 6:1,2,6).
5. Archangel. “Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses. durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee” (Jude 9). See also I Thessalonians 4:16.
6. Throne. “By him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in the earth, visible, and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him” (Col. 1:16).
7. Dominion. God set Christ “at his own right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world but also in that which is to come” (Eph. 1:20, 21). See also Colossians 1:16.
8. Principalities. “I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor heighth, nor depth, nor any other creature,shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:38, 39). See also Colossians 1:16; Ephesians 6:12.
9. Powers. “Unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God” (Eph. 3:10). See also Colossians 1:16; Ephesians 1:21.
10. Mighty. “God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the Gods” (Ps. 82:1). See also Psalm 89:6.
11. Authorities. “[Jesus Christ] is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him” (I Peter 3:22).
12. Dignities. “These filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil ofdignities” (Jude 8). See also II Peter 2:10.
H. Their Division.
Angels are divided into two great moral realms or spheres:
1. Holy Angels — Angels of God. “Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him. And when Jacob saw them, he said, This is God’s host: and he called the name of that placeMahanaim” (Gen, 32:1, 2). See also Matthew 25:31; Daniel 4:13.
2. Fallen Angels — Angels of Satan. “There was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him” (Rev. 12:7-9). See also II Peter 2:4-6; Jude 6, 7.
These are called the angels of Satan; they were not created by him; they became his by choice. All angels were created in holiness; possessing a free will, they could choose either to serve God or Satan. “A God very terrible in the council of the holy ones, and to be feared above all them that are round about him,” (Ps. 89:7, R.V.). See also Matthew 18:10; 13:9; Mark 8:38; John 8:34; II Peter 2:4; Jude 6; I John 5:18.
A. Good Angels.
1. Their Adoration. “Again, when he bringeth in the first begotten into the world, he said, And let all the angels of God worship him” (Heb. 1:6 ). See also Isaiah 6:3; John 12:41; Revelation 5:11, 12. We are told in Colossians 2:18 never to worship angels.
2. Their Ministration.
a. Angelic Revelation. They are able to carry the will of God to man. “If the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense ofreward; how shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation,” (Heb. 2:2). Also Daniel 8:16, 17; Luke 1:11-13; Acts 1:9-11.
b. Angelic Preservation. They are sent to help the saints of God. He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God” (Dan. 3:25). See also II Kings 6:15-18; Hebrews 1:14.
c. Angelic Stimulation. They are sent to encourage the child of God. “For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, saving, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me” (Acts 27:23-25).
d. Angelic Emancipation. They are sent to deliver the child of God. “The angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life” (Acts 5:19, 20).
e. Angelic Sustentation. “The devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him” (Matt. 4:11). See also Luke 22:43.
f. Angelic Conduction. “The angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert” (Acts 8:26). See also Genesis 24:7; Exodus 23:20-23; Numbers 20:16; Acts 10:3-8.
g. Angelic Administration. They execute the will of God. “Bless the LORD, all ye hosts; ye ministers of his, that do his pleasure. Bless the LORD all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul” (Ps. 103:21, 22).
(1) In Judgment. “Let them be as chaff before the wind: and let the angel of the LORD chase them” (Ps. 35:5). See also I Chronicles 21:15; II Kings 19:35.
(2) In Guarding the Saved. “At that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince whichstandeth for the children of thy people” (Dan. 12: la). See also Hebrews 1:14.
(3) In Guarding the Dead. “And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried” (Luke 16:22).
(4) In Communicating the Law. “Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgression, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator” (Gal. 3:19). See also Hebrews 2:2.
(5) In Accompanying Christ. “To you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels” (II Thess. 1:7).
(6) In Regathering Israel. “When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory” (Matt. 25:31).
(7) In Harvesting at the End of the Age. “Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn” (Matt. 13:30).
B. Evil Angels.
These are the angelic followers of the Devil. These are they for whom hell is prepared.
1. Their Designation. They are evil spirits; seductive, unclean, demons. “When he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils [demons] coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way” (Matt. 8:28). See also Matthew 9:33; 10:1; 12:43; Mark 1:26; 5:2-5; 9:17, 20; Luke 6:18; 9:39.
2. Their Division.
a. Fallen and Free.
b. Fallen and Chained. “God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment” (II Peter 2:4). See also Ephesians 6:12; Jude 6.
3. The Free Angels.
a. Their Activities.
(1) They Obtain Possession of the Bodies of Men. “They also which saw it told them by what means he that was possessed of the devils [demons] was healed” (Luke 8:36).
(2) They Voluntarily Vacate the Bodies of Men. “When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none” (Matt. 12:43).
b. Their Energies.
(1) They Threw a Man Down and Didn’t Hurt Him. “Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. And when the devil [demon] had thrown him in the midst, he came out of him, and hurt him not” (Luke 4:35).
(2) They Threw a Man Down and Tore Him. “As he was yet a coming, the devil [demon] threw him down, and tare him. And Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, and healed the child, and delivered him again to his father” (Luke 9:42).
(3) They Drove a Man Into the Wilderness. “He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bonds, and was driven of the devil [demon] into the wilderness” (Luke 8:29).
(1) Some Are Deaf. “When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him” (Mark 9:25).
(2) Some Are Dumb. “One of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit” (Mark 9:17).
(3) Some Are Lying. “The LORD said unto him, Wherewith? And he said, I will go forth, and will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And he said, Thou shalt persuade him, and prevail also: go forth, and do so” (I Kings 22:22).
(4) Some are Foul. “When Jesus saw that the people were running together, he rebuked the foul spirit” (Mark 9:25a).
(5) Some Are Seducing. “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils [demons]” (I Tim. 4:1).
d. Their Power. It is tremendous.
(1) They Control the Bodies of Both Men and Beasts (Mark 5:8-13).
(2) They Inflict Physical Infirmities. “Ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath day ?”(Luke 13:16).
(3) They Inflict Mental Maladies. “Always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones” (Mark 5:5).
(4) They Produce Moral Impurity. “When he was come up out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit” (Mark 5:2). See also Matthew 10:1.
e. Their Existence. The word “devil” is best translated “demon.” There is only one Devil, but many demons, the Devil being the prince over them. There is such a thing as demon possession today. Missionaries to foreign countries attest to this fact. Demon-possessed men have super-human strength; they are fully controlled by demons.
It is good to point out that the demons always spoke through the mouths of those they possessed. The demons in these people recognized the Lord Jesus, and he distinguished between the demon and the man. Demons do not like to be disembodied; they prefer to be cast into a herd of swine (Mark 5:1-20).
f. Their Evidence. Demonism was not limited to the time of Christ. There was evidence that itwas in existence before His first advent:
(1) The four Gospels introduced demonism as the thing that was known.
(2) The people showed no surprise at demon possession.
(3) The Jews claimed to cast out demons by their power. (Matt. 12:27).
(4) After the time of Christ, the early Apostolic Fathers came in contact with demonism (Matt. 10:1; Mark 16:17; Acts 8:7).
(5) Demonism is seen today in modern missionary annals (Eph. 2:2, 6).
4. The Imprisoned Angels.
a. Their Sins. “God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness to be reserved unto judgment” (II Peter 2:4). The above Scripture plainly shows that these angels were not in the original rebellion with Satan. The casting out of Satan occurred before the time of Adam; the angels referred to sinned since the time of Adam.
Surely these must be the “sons of God,” who married the “daughters of men.” “It came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, that the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose. . . . There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old men of renown” (Gen. 6:1,2, 4).
There are those who hold that the “sons of God” were the Sons of Seth, and that the “daughters of men” were the daughters of Cain. This is refuted simply by asking, “How could Seth beget Sons of God?”
Others contend that the “sons of God” were regenerated men, who married unregenerated women, called the “daughters of men.” We see the same things happening even today, but there are no giants born because of this unequally yoked union.
To be safe and sure as to the correct interpretation, let us find out who the “sons of God” could be. There are several persons called the “sons of God” in Scripture:
1. Jesus Christ — the Son of God — by relationship.
2. Adam — a son of God — by creation (Luke 3:38).
3. Angels — sons of God — by creation (Job 1, 2).
4. Regenerated men — sons of God — by regeneration and adoption.
Remember, we are only children of God now by regeneration; we shall be declared to be sons at our adoption — “to wit the redemption of our body.”
By simple elimination we find out who the “sons of God” were: Christ is eliminated, and Adam also, as he had been dead for a long time. They could not be regenerated men because adoption ofsonship had not occurred yet. This leaves only the angels.
The question naturally arises, “Do not the Scriptures teach that angels cannot marry?” They do not teach this; they teach that they do not marry in heaven. Man marries here, but he will not marry in heaven. Then how did they marry the daughters of men? We do not know, but the following verses prove, without a doubt, that they did. We have already quoted Jude 6, but we will do so again, adding verse seven. This substantiates our claim: “And the angels which kept not their first estate [principality, their own being as angels], but left their own habitation [heaven], he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire” (Jude 6, 7). Thus, I believe it is positively proved that the angels sinned after the similitude of Sodom and Gomorrah.
This union brought about a race of giants — giants in stature, and giants in sin. They were destroyed by the flood.
Demon possession was prolific before the flood; and the Lord Jesus has revealed, “But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Matt. 24:37). Demon possession shall be in full control during the Great Tribulation (Rev. 12), before the revelation of Christ at His second coming.
b. Their Position. They are cast down into Tartarus, the innermost prison of Hades, chained in darkness, awaiting their day of judgment (II Peter 2:4).
A. The Names and Descriptive Titles.
1. Satan. This name means “adversary, hater, and accuser.” “Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel” (I Chron. 21:1).
2. Devil. This name means “Slanderer, Accuser, Deceiver.” “He laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years” (Rev. 20:2).
3. Beelzebub. This is the prince of demons. Originally it meant “Lord of Flies”; the Jews later changed it to mean “Lord of the Dung Hill.” “The scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils [demons] casteth he out devils [demons]” (Mark 3:22).
4. Belial. This means “good-for-nothing.” “Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known” (Deut.13:13).
5. The Wicked One. He is the evil one, who has no reverence for Christ. “I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome thewicked one” (I John 2:14). See also I John 2:13; Matthew 6:13, R.V.
6. Prince of This World. World politics, business and society are under his domain. The Lord Jesus did not deny this when he was accosted by the Devil in the wilderness (Matt. 4; Luke 4). “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out” (John 12:31). See also John 14:30; 16:11.
7. The God of This Age. “If our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: in whom the god of this world [age] hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (II Cor. 4:4).
8. Prince of the Power of the Air. “You hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience” (Eph. 2:2).
9. That Old Serpent. “The great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him” (Rev. 12:9). See also Revelation 12:3; 20:2.
10. Dragon. “He laid hold on the dragon, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years” (Rev. 20:2).
11. The Evil One. “We know that whosoever is begotten of God sinneth not; but he that was begotten of God keepeth himself, and the evil one toucheth him not” (I John 5:18, R.V.).
12. Angel of Light. “Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light” (II Cor. 11:14).
13. Father of Lies. “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lust of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it” (John 8:44).
14. Murderer. “He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him” (John 8:44b). See also I John 3:12-15.
15. Roaring Lion. “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary, the devil, as a roaring lion,walketh about seeking whom he may devour” (I Peter 5:8).
16. Ruler of Darkness. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph. 6:12).
B. The Personality of Satan.
There is a general denial that the Devil is a person. To deny such is to deny the Word of God. The Scriptures teach that he is as much a person as the Lord Jesus Christ.
C. The Origin of Satan.
Satan was a created being (Ezek. 28:15). His position was the greatest of all the angelic hosts, “Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth” (Ezek. 28:14). He was one of the cherubim that overlooked the mercy seat of the temple in heaven.
His name, Lucifer, means “Son of the Morning.” He was created in perfect beauty (Ezek. 28:12, 17). Some hold that he was the choir leader of heaven, as the tabrets and pipes were prepared in him the day that he was created (Ezek. 28:13). Others may ask, “Isn’t the twenty-eighth chapter of Ezekiel speaking about the King of Tyre?” Yes, to begin with but the inspired writer goes beyond the King of Tyre, and speaks about a person that no human person could possibly fulfill, “Thou hast been in Eden” (Ezek. 28:13). Who could this be but Satan? He was perfect in his ways (Ezek. 28:15) until sin was found in him.
D. The Career of Satan.
What was the sin that caused Satan to be? What was it that changed Lucifer into the Devil? It was the original sin of the universe: pride. “I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High” (Is. 14:14). The sin of pride was caused by choosing his own will above the will of God. “I will” became the original sin of the universe.
He appeared in the garden of Eden and thrust the human race into sin and death. He came to Job and wrought misery in his life. He tempted David to number the people. He tempted Christ (Matt. 4) and Peter (Luke 22:32). He hindered Paul in his great work (I Thess. 2:18). He snatches the Word from people’s hearts (Mark 4:15).
E. The Location of Satan.
He does have access to the throne of God, for he accused Job, and we are told that he accuses the brethren daily. “The accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night” (Rev. 12: l0c). It is an error to think of the Devil living in a palace in hell; his location is in the heavenlies.
F. The Character of Satan.
1. Has Great Dignity. His titles show this. “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out” (John 12:31). See also Jude 8, 9; II Corinthians 4:4.
2. Has Great Power. God (Jesus) sent Paul to the Gentiles “to open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me” (Acts 26:18). See also Job 1:10-12; Luke 11:14, 18; Ephesians 6:11, 12. The whole world without Christ is under him.
3. Has Great Cunning and Deceit. “Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light” (IICor. 11:14). See also Matthew 24:24; II Corinthians 2:11.
4. Has Great Malignity. “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (I John 3:8). See also II Corinthians 4:4.
5. Has Great Fear. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (Jas. 4:7).
G. The Work of Satan.
1. He Is the Author of Sin and Tempts Men to Sin. “Then was Jesus led up of the spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil” (Matt. 4:1.)
2. He Produces Sickness and Has Power of Death. “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil” (Heb. 2:14). See also Luke 13:16; Acts 10:38.
3. He Lays Snares for Men. “God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth . . . that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will” (II Tim. 2:26).
4. He Takes the Word Out of Hearts. “When anyone heareth the word of the kingdom, andunderstandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the wayside” (Matt. 13:19).
5. He Puts Wicked Purposes Into Hearts. “Neither give place to the devil” (Eph. 4:27).
6. He Blinds Minds. “The God of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (II Cor. 4:4).
7. He Harasses Men. “Lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure” (II Cor. 12:7).
8. He Accuses Men Before God. “The accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night” (Rev. 12:l0c).
9. He Enters Into Men. “Supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him . . . [Jesus] riseth from supper” (John 13:2).
10. He Sows Tares Among God’s People. “The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; the enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels” (Matt. 13:38, 39).
11. He Gives Power to the Lawless Ones. “To whom ye forgive anything, I forgive also: for what I also have forgiven if I have forgiven anything, for your sakes have I forgiven it in the presence of Christ; that no advantage may be gained over us by Satan: for we are not ignorant of his devices” (II Cor. 2:10, 11, R.V.).
12. He Resists God’s Servants. “He shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him” (Zech. 3:1). See also Daniel 10:13.
13. He Hinders God’s Servants. “We would fain have come unto you, even I Paul, once and again; but Satan hindered us” (I Thess. 2:18, R.V.).
14. He Sifts God’s Servants. “The Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat” (Luke 22:31).
15. He Holds the World. “We know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in the evil one” (I John 5:19, R.V.).
H. The Limitation of Satan.
1. He Is Not Omnipresent. He can be at only one place at a time. He is a created being, and a created being cannot be in two places at the same time. He is not everywhere, but his followers (demons) are. He can move rapidly to the aid of his agents (Luke 10:18).
2. He Is Not Omniscient. He is wise; too wise for us, but he is not all-wise. The Devil would know less if we would tell him less. Spiritism is not all trickery. It is demonism, controlled by the Devil. No one can communicate with the dead, but the Devil and his angels know about the dead and communicate this knowledge to their mediums.
3. He Is Not Omnipotent. He is not all-powerful, though he has more power than we do. He is subject to the Word of God. A good example of this is found in Job 1 and 2.
I. Our Attitude toward Satan.
1. Redemptive Rights Are to Be Claimed by the Believer. “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death” (Rev. 12:11). See also Ephesians 6:16, R.V.; Hebrews 2:14, R.V.; Colossians 2:15: I John 3:8.
2. Full Equipment Is to Be Appropriated by the Believer. “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Eph. 6:10, 11). See also Ephesians 6:12-18.
3. Strict Self Control Is to Be Maintained. “Neither give place to the devil” (Eph. 4:27).
4. Vigilance Is to Be Exercised by the Believer. “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (I Peter 5:8). See also II Corinthians 2:11.
5. Resistance Is to Be Made by the Believer. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (Jas. 4:7). See also I John 2:14.