The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Satan, a person or a personification?

My guess is that they do it by classifying these passages as personifications of evil.


If i recall the temptation of Jesus in Matthew 4 has been explained as coming from His own sin nature rather than a real being called the Devil. Of course that is heresy.

Matthew 4: 1 Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted a by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”

4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ b

5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:

“ ‘He will command his angels concerning you,

and they will lift you up in their hands,

so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’ c

7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ d

8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”

10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’ e

11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.

Satan offered Jesus the kingdoms of this world but Jesus didn’t challenge the fact that Satan could do that, which is interesting. It suggests Satan is the god of this world which would answer a lot of questions.

1 Like

There is no satan, and there is no HELL.

1 Like

Jesus encountered Satan and spoke to him as Origen stated.
What will be the next thing for you? That there is no Jesus?

1 Like

The sea and wind are not recorded to have spoken back to Jesus, unlike certain evil spirits. But since all things were made through God the Son (John 1:1-3), and he has authority over all (Matthew 28:18), that authority must include the wind and the waves!

Also, regarding inanimate wind and waves submitting to Jesus, possibly there was a malicious intelligence BEHIND the sudden windstorm that overtook Jesus and the disciples on the lake of Galilee (Mark 4:37-41). After all, we recall from Job that the archangel Satan was behind the “natural” disasters that struck him (Job 1), disasters which Job attributed to God (a misattribution which I believe Job made in ignorance).

1 Like

You’re waxing ludicrous, qaz. What are you trying to prove?

The sun and moon praising God are figures of speech. Letting not your left hand know what the right hand is doing is a figure of speech, wherein a body part represents a person.

Satan is not a figure of speech. He is a malicious being.

1 Like

Don, you are fun. The idea of real vs metaphorical satan totally bypasses you. And that is okay, so I don’t believe in a literal satan. You do. as we go through life we will either believe or not believe, and you will be responsible to the flock you preach to. Telling folks there is a satan and a hell is quite a position. Thanks.

And telling people that there is no hell or Satan, is quite a position.

What do you do when someone says to you, “If there is no hell or Satan, I’ll just live the way I please, for there will be no consequences”?

I know that belief in hell or Satan is not a sufficient reason for becoming a Christian, and that there are other adverse consequences for living as you please. But for some people, the existence of hell and Satan is their only reason.

Yes it is, and it is a great revelation.

First of all, I have never encountered anyone saying that, not sure what kind of folks you are hanging around with but for me, none of my friends ever asked that sort of question, and I would ask why you seem to feel that human nature with others would tend to gravitate to a satan or a hell, and why you would be so contrary to the idea that there may not be a satan or a hell. It is simply an idea. One I tend to believe.

Here is something for your consideration…

The Doctrine of Satan.pdf (173.2 KB)

How do i know “that the sun, moon, mountains, and trees aren’t beings with characters of their own?” Common sense. It’s BTW common knowledge that even children have.

“How do you know Satan is a being,”? The testimony of many Scriptures. Some examples are cited or quoted in the present thread and here:

But, again, as i said earlier, what does it really matter:

What questions, Steve? Compare Satan as god of this world in Mt.4 to:

Gal.1:4 who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father,

2 Corinthians 4:4
The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

1 John 5:19
We know that we are of God, and that the whole world is under the power of the evil one.

John 14:30
Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the ruler of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.

Romans 12:2
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.

As I understand it… the “this world” was the world of 1st century Judaism, out of which many a believer in that era had come; and of which the apostles warned against those buckling under the strain of persecution not to return to — of which the ruler, evil one or god of that age was the Judaic High Priesthood.

Paul is conversing with disciples at Corinth a gentile church and says Satan blinds the minds of unbelievers to gentiles so clearly this has nothing to do with Judaic High Priests.

1 Like

In Isa 1.18 " Come now let us reason together" which is similar to common sense , so it is a factor to be considered among others. Common sense is not necessarily revealed by how many people believe something but more by the logic of the belief.

1 Like

Well i believe Moses & Job & Matthew & John & Paul & Peter& James & Jude and Jesus. Their descriptions of Satan are about a living being and are warnings or negative portrayals of Satan.

1 Like

Is that your belief, qaz? (Do you often have conversations with the sun, moon & stars?). If not, why not?

Jesus said if your hands or feet offend you, cut them off. How many people have you ever heard of who have literally chopped off/gouged out body parts in taking Jesus words to insanely excessive literality? Have you chopped off/gouged out any lately? If not, why not?

Ezekiel speaks of Pharoah as being a tree in the garden of Eden & a sea monster. Do you also take that literally? If not, why not?

“Ezekiel himself is full of graphic, poetic images and metaphors (comparisons in which one thing is simply called another without “like” or “as”), one of which is a statement that Pharaoh was a tree in Eden, God’s garden (Ezek. 31:1-18; he is also a sea monster, 29:3-5).”

1 Like

Davo, what (a) advantage and (b) consequences would there be in accepting your Pantelistic views as opposed to say, what Paidon or ECF Origen or Robin Parry or Christian Universalists believe?

If there are no afterdeath negative consequences for anyone, even the most wicked sinners, then what is going to motivate people to holy living?

If all prophecy is fulfilled, & all Scripture applies to those who are long dead, what significance, if any, does Scripture have for us today?

Is there any gospel for today? If so, what is this gospel? Are you motivated to share it with the lost?

Perhaps you’ld prefer to start a new thread in answering those questions.