September 15 I Sunday
2 Corinthians 8
“[Jesus] replied, ‘I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.” —Luke 10:18-19
Some of us may hold to the idea that Satan is the evil version of God; a dualistic idea where God is on one side and Satan on the other. But there are three huge contrasts between God and Satan. Firstly, God has no beginning while Satan has a beginning. We may wonder how does a good God create an evil devil? The answer is, God did not create Satan as he is now but a beautiful angel. It was Satan’s pride that made him rebel against God as John tells us, “…that ancient snake called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray…was hurled to the earth…” (Revelation 12:9). Satan did not leave heaven alone, “[his] tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth” (Revelation 12:4). A third of the stars refers to the angels joining Satan in his rebellion and together they were cast down to earth. Satan originated in heaven, but now operates on earth.
Secondly, God is omnipresent, where He is in all places at all times but Satan is local in his activity as he goes to and fro throughout the earth. We may ask, if Satan is limited, can he tempt more than one person at a time? Yes, it is possible for Satan and his angels—whom we call demons—to have the power to be in more than one place at the same time. For example, we may say “Hitler invaded Poland in 1939” but Hitler was actually sitting in Berlin when it happened. Why do we say Hitler invaded Poland? Because Hitler was the authority behind that decision and his armed forces were representing him. In other words, when Scripture speaks of Satan, it could be speaking of the demonic forces representing and working for him.
Thirdly, God is omniscient and knows everything, yet Satan does not know everything and some things do take him by surprise. For example, did Satan really know what was happening on the cross? It was his own suicide if he did, because it was on the cross that all the works of the devil were destroyed. Therefore, Satan does not know everything and is limited in that sense.
Despite the fact that Satan roams the earth, we know of his impending doom as John tells us, “the devil…was thrown into the lake of burning sulphur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Revelation 20:10). We have hope because Jesus already has victory over Satan on the cross and one day, Satan will be destroyed forever.
Prayer: Dear Almighty God, even though Satan roams the earth and has power, I do not need to fear because Satan was defeated when Jesus died on that cross. Praise You!