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  • Who is Satan?

    Early in my Christian walk, I asked this question, Who is Satan? I subsequently put together a small study on my findings, and will share it here in hopes that it will be helpful to others with the same question.
    .......

    The following will be a brief study of the person of Satan and how he is depicted in the Bible. What is our defense against him? How does knowing who he is and how his plans affect us as Children of God help us to be victorious in our walk?

    We begin our study in Genesis. Take some time to read chapters 2 and 3, to get familiar with that story, especially if you have never read it before. We are going to focus in on the first commandment that God gave to humans on earth.

    Ge 2:15-17
    15 Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. 16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, "Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."
    Gen 2:15-17
    What was the command given by God to Adam?

    What was the name of the tree?

    How important was this commandment? (note the penalty for disobedience)

    Next we will look at how the commandment was broken.

    Ge 3:1-7
    3 Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, "Has God indeed said, 'You shall not eat of every tree of the garden'?"
    2 And the woman said to the serpent, "We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, 'You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.'"
    4 Then the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
    6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings. NKJV


    How did the Serpent re-word the command that had been given to Adam?

    What changes did Eve make to the command?

    Why do you think the serpent was able to convince Eve?

    This will do for a starter. I hope that there will be at least a few who will answer the questions. Then we will move to the next lesson.
    Blessings,

    Road Warrior


    Proverbs 4:23
    23 Guard your heart above all else,
    for it determines the course of your life.

  • #2
    OK, so people are looking, but not posting. Maybe it is too difficult to do it as a study - I'll change the way I'm doing it. First I'll answer my own questions in the first post.

    Gen 2:15-17
    What was the command given by God to Adam?

    God told Adam that he could eat fruit from any of the trees, except for one particular tree in the middle of the garden.


    What was the name of the tree?


    This tree was the tree of the KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL.


    How important was this commandment? (note the penalty for disobedience)


    The penalty for eating the fruit would be death. That means it is a serious offense.


    How did the Serpent re-word the command that had been given to Adam?

    The serpent said:

    Ge 3:1 Has God indeed said, 'You shall not eat of every tree of the garden'?" We notice that God had expressly told Adam that all the trees were available, except for one. Do you see the confusion that the serpent introduced in the way he asked the question?
    What changes did Eve make to the command?
    Now that Eve is flustered by the confusion introduced by the serpent, notice how she adds to it:Ge 3:2-3
    "We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, 'You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.'" NKJV

    She knew that the serpent was wrong about not being able to eat from any tree in the garden. But in refuting him, she goes too far, and adds a bit of her own thinking "nor shall you touch it." God's command said nothing about touching, only about eating.

    Why do you think the serpent was able to convince Eve?
    I think the serpent was able to convince Eve because he started by introducing confusion. Then when she "enhanced" the commandment, it gave him another opening.

    Look what he does next!

    Ge 3:4-6
    4 Then the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
    6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. NKJV

    So, now the serpent has defied God's command, calling it a lie and a deception. He goes further to tout the benefits of eating the fruit; she would gain an attribute that God has, of knowing good and evil.

    Without further ado, Eve ate some of the fruit, and gave some to Adam who was apparently there ALL THE TIME, and had not spoken up to stop what was happening. He just goes along with it.

    Ge 3:6-7
    She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings. NKJV

    With this action, death has now entered into the garden, into the world. Adam and Eve have lost immortality. As you read the rest of the story, you see that they also lost the garden, daily walks with God, easy eating and freedom from pain.

    Genesis 2 and 3 clearly establish that the serpent is a troublemaker. He uses subterfuge, deception, lies and manipulation to trip Eve, and to trap her into disobedience of God's single commandment.
    Last edited by RoadWarrior; Mar 10th 2008, 04:51 PM.
    Blessings,

    Road Warrior


    Proverbs 4:23
    23 Guard your heart above all else,
    for it determines the course of your life.

    Comment


    • #3
      I was always under the impression that Eve was alone with the serpent when she ate the apple. Then Adam came along and she managed to get him to eat of it, too...

      But in Genesis 3:7, why why were both their eyes opened at the same time? Eve ate first...she should have seen the truth right then...did the serpent blind her until she had committed Adam, also?
      Romans 15:30 KJV 30Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ's sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me;

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by menJesus View Post
        I was always under the impression that Eve was alone with the serpent when she ate the apple. Then Adam came along and she managed to get him to eat of it, too...

        But in Genesis 3:7, why why were both their eyes opened at the same time? Eve ate first...she should have seen the truth right then...did the serpent blind her until she had committed Adam, also?
        Notice that scripture says "with her". Ge 3:6
        She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. NKJV

        It only takes a small twisting of the scripture to make it seem that Adam was not there. It has been historically popular to put the blame on Eve. But as we go forward, we are going to see that God looks at things differently from the way that man looks at things.
        Blessings,

        Road Warrior


        Proverbs 4:23
        23 Guard your heart above all else,
        for it determines the course of your life.

        Comment


        • #5
          Alright then...so what about Genesis 3:7?

          Thank you so much for doing this.
          Romans 15:30 KJV 30Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ's sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me;

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by menJesus View Post
            Alright then...so what about Genesis 3:7?

            Thank you so much for doing this.
            I just did a response to this, and lost it somehow! Never mind, I'll do it again.

            I think from the reading of the text that Adam and Eve were together when the serpent tempted Eve; they ate together and their eyes were opened together. The text of Gen 3:7 does not clarify anything further than this, so I will not attempt to interpret it one way of the other.

            It was when I first did this study that it became really clear to me how important it is to handle scripture carefully and properly.

            Notice: Satan's first recorded "trick" in the Bible is that he twisted the words that God had clearly spoken to Adam. Then he got Eve to answer him back and she made the mistake of adding to God's word. This gave Satan the chance to "interpret" it to mean something different from what it actually meant.

            There is a caution in more than one place in scripture, we are not to add to it, nor take away from it. And we are told that scripture is not subject to "private interpretation". So there are 3 of the biggest problems in today's church, from my viewpoint. You see all of these things being done by so-called scholars, preachers, etc.

            The only safe thing is to read the Bible for itself, and to ask the Holy Spirit to help us to understand it.
            Blessings,

            Road Warrior


            Proverbs 4:23
            23 Guard your heart above all else,
            for it determines the course of your life.

            Comment


            • #7
              Before we move away from Genesis 2 & 3, Let's see what else we can learn about this, by looking into the NT.

              1 Ti 2:14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. NKJV

              This has typically been used to bash women, but think about it. Adam was not deceived. Therefore, he ate knowingly.

              I won't try to interpret that, but just suggest that we think carefully about what this means.

              Further enlightenment will come on this picture as we look at God's response, and who was held responsible.

              The man said, "the woman YOU GAVE ME, gave it to me and I ate it." No defense, no excuse, except that it is "her fault" - or maybe God's fault since God gave him the woman in the first place.

              The woman said, "The serpent deceived me and I ate." So she admits that she was deceived.

              But notice the pattern of the punishment.

              First the serpent, and we won't go into the details of that, I'm sure you've heard a dozen sermons.

              Then the woman, establishing the pattern of authority of husband over wife.

              Then the man, who "heeded the voice" of his wife, now has to support her by the sweat of his brow, he will have a lifetime of hard work, and will return to the dust at the end of it.

              Then we have the first death - God made "tunics of skin" to clothe Adam and Eve.

              There is much more to be learned here, and I can not do justice to it. We will move on to the next thing that we can learn about Satan. At this point, what do we know about him?

              He is a deceiver, a liar, a trickster, and an enemy of God. He is also the enemy of God's people, which at this time was just Adam and Eve.

              The first battle has been fought on planet earth. It is the beginning of a war that continues to this very day, and will find its end only with the final actions described in the book of Revelation.
              Blessings,

              Road Warrior


              Proverbs 4:23
              23 Guard your heart above all else,
              for it determines the course of your life.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by menJesus View Post
                I was always under the impression that Eve was alone with the serpent when she ate the apple. Then Adam came along and she managed to get him to eat of it, too...

                But in Genesis 3:7, why why were both their eyes opened at the same time? Eve ate first...she should have seen the truth right then...did the serpent blind her until she had committed Adam, also?
                Eve didn't convince Adam to eat the fruit; Adam made the conscious choice to disobey, knowing what would become of Eve if he didn't follow her--he chose Eve over God.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I do have one more comment on the serpent. How do we know that this is Satan?

                  Rv 12:9
                  9 So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
                  NKJV
                  Blessings,

                  Road Warrior


                  Proverbs 4:23
                  23 Guard your heart above all else,
                  for it determines the course of your life.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by RoadWarrior View Post
                    Rv 12:9
                    9 So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
                    NKJV
                    Now that we have looked ahead into Revelation, we see some interesting things about the serpent. He is called the great dragon, the Devil, and Satan. We are reminded that he deceives not only Eve, but the whole world. But the next line is very interesting.

                    What does it mean that he was cast to the earth? From where was he cast?

                    For the answer to this, let us look back in the Prophets - Isaiah and Ezekiel who have some verses that are believed to help us understand.

                    Isa 14:12
                    12 "How you are fallen from heaven,
                    O Lucifer, son of the morning!
                    How you are cut down to the ground,
                    You who weakened the nations!
                    NKJV

                    If the scholars are right, and this is the same being, he is also known as Lucifer. And this tells us that he has fallen from heaven, to the ground, i.e., earth. We see another of his characteristics. He weakens the nations.

                    Is there a clue as to why he was cast out?

                    Isa 14:13-17
                    13 For you have said in your heart:
                    'I will ascend into heaven,
                    I will exalt my throne above the stars of God;
                    I will also sit on the mount of the congregation
                    On the farthest sides of the north;
                    14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds,
                    I will be like the Most High.'
                    15 Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol,
                    To the lowest depths of the Pit.
                    16 "Those who see you will gaze at you,
                    And consider you, saying:
                    'Is this the man who made the earth tremble,
                    Who shook kingdoms,
                    17 Who made the world as a wilderness
                    And destroyed its cities,
                    Who did not open the house of his prisoners?'
                    NKJV

                    We see more of his character - pride rules! He wants the highest position, above all the stars, above the clouds - he wants to be like the Most High God. He wants to be equal with God!

                    And yet more of his character - he makes the earth tremble, shakes kingdoms, makes the world as a wilderness, destroys cities, and keeps prisons from which he permits no escape.

                    In the next post we will consider who he was, before he fell.
                    Blessings,

                    Road Warrior


                    Proverbs 4:23
                    23 Guard your heart above all else,
                    for it determines the course of your life.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Who was Lucifer?

                      Isa 14:12
                      12 "How you are fallen from heaven,
                      O Lucifer, son of the morning!
                      How you are cut down to the ground,
                      You who weakened the nations! NKJV

                      In the previous post, I included this verse. We see that Lucifer was "son of the morning" prior to his fall from heaven. His dwelling place before, was heaven.

                      The name "Lucifer" is the Hebrew word "halal" which contains the meaning of shining, brightness, clarity.

                      Ezekiel 28 is addressed to the "king of Tyre" but scholars believe this to be a reference to Lucifer.

                      Eze 28:12-15
                      Thus says the Lord God:
                      "You were the seal of perfection,
                      Full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.
                      13 You were in Eden, the garden of God;
                      Every precious stone was your covering:
                      The sardius, topaz, and diamond,
                      Beryl, onyx, and jasper,
                      Sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold.
                      The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes
                      Was prepared for you on the day you were created.
                      14 "You were the anointed cherub who covers;
                      I established you;
                      You were on the holy mountain of God;
                      You walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones.
                      15 You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created,
                      Till iniquity was found in you.
                      NKJV


                      Isn't this a beautiful picture? Until ... until in verse 15, "iniquity was found in you."

                      Isa 14:13-14
                      13 For you have said in your heart:
                      'I will
                      ascend into heaven,
                      I will exalt my throne above the stars of God;
                      I will also sit on the mount of the congregation
                      On the farthest sides of the north;
                      14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds,
                      I will be like the Most High.'
                      NKJV
                      Blessings,

                      Road Warrior


                      Proverbs 4:23
                      23 Guard your heart above all else,
                      for it determines the course of your life.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Yes, RW, he kept saying 'I will...' He was very self-centered, very arrogant. Still is. He knows that he is doomed because of God's words to him in Gen. 3 NKJV

                        14 So the LORD God said to the serpent:
                        “ Because you have done this,
                        You are cursed more than all cattle,
                        And more than every beast of the field;
                        On your belly you shall go,
                        And you shall eat dust
                        All the days of your life.
                        15 And I will put enmity
                        Between you and the woman,
                        And between your seed and her Seed;
                        He shall bruise your head,
                        And you shall bruise His heel.”

                        At the time of Christ's death, He fully defeated Satan, didn't He?
                        But Satan still has powers on this earth - for a limited time, right?
                        g
                        "Gripped in the Hand of God"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I have heard that he was the most beautiful angel in heaven, and that his body was made of musical instruments.

                          But I never noticed, before, that he was described as a man...
                          Romans 15:30 KJV 30Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ's sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me;

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Xel'Naga View Post
                            Eve didn't convince Adam to eat the fruit; Adam made the conscious choice to disobey, knowing what would become of Eve if he didn't follow her--he chose Eve over God.
                            Hi Xel, thanks for the comment. You are right that there doesn't seem to have been any "convincing" on Eve's part, to get Adam to eat the fruit. As for him making a conscious choice to disobey, it seems to have been that way. This is indeed one of the scholarly thoughts as to why Adam did as he did. It's not the only one, however.

                            I recently heard it suggested that Adam could have prayed for Eve, and her sin could have been forgiven. But these thoughts are "reading between the lines" and might be good guesswork, or they might not.

                            What we see in scripture is that the serpent addressed Eve, she was persuaded and she ate. She gave to Adam who was with her, and he ate. One might also conjecture that Adam was persuaded, along with Eve, by the serpent, except for the verse in Timothy. Eve was deceived, and Adam was not deceived.

                            Their eyes were indeed opened to the fact that they were naked. They could see that there was good, and there was evil. Up to that point, they only saw the good. But now they see evil also.

                            When we take scripture at face value, we are generally left with a lot of mystery, and sometimes more questions than the answers that we receive. I have learned that it is ok to not know everything, to look into what I can know, and seek to obey God in what He is speaking to me.

                            That is my way, and I realize that the practice of others may vary. Later on we are going to see what value is gained from knowing the simple, umembroidered facts.

                            So let's get back to Satan, and who he is. We need to know something very important. How can we avoid falling into the kind of trap that Satan sets for us, today? Eve and Adam walked right in to the trap. We can learn something from observing them, and how they responded. Whether by deception (Eve) or conscious choice (Adam) they both were caught in the trap.
                            Blessings,

                            Road Warrior


                            Proverbs 4:23
                            23 Guard your heart above all else,
                            for it determines the course of your life.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by grptinHisHand View Post
                              Yes, RW, he kept saying 'I will...' He was very self-centered, very arrogant. Still is. He knows that he is doomed because of God's words to him in Gen. 3 NKJV

                              14 So the LORD God said to the serpent:
                              Because you have done this,
                              You are cursed more than all cattle,
                              And more than every beast of the field;
                              On your belly you shall go,
                              And you shall eat dust
                              All the days of your life.
                              15 And I will put enmity
                              Between you and the woman,
                              And between your seed and her Seed;
                              He shall bruise your head,
                              And you shall bruise His heel.

                              At the time of Christ's death, He fully defeated Satan, didn't He?
                              But Satan still has powers on this earth - for a limited time, right?
                              g
                              Hi, g, and thanks for that thought.

                              What you have posted here is the punishment God gave to Satan, and it is also the prophecy of the future. What is important for our study at this point is to realize the importance of what is being said in all of verse 15.

                              15 And I will put enmity
                              Between you and the woman,
                              And between your seed and her Seed;
                              He shall bruise your head,
                              And you shall bruise His heel.

                              This is the enmity that exists in the world today. It is the battle that we are all fighting. It is the war that is raging in the heavens and in the earth. Yes, the Seed of the woman (Jesus) will bruise Satan's head, and as Christians we believe that to have happened on the cross. But Satan will bruise the heel of Jesus.

                              We are all the descendants of Eve, and we have inherited this war. It is not over yet.
                              Blessings,

                              Road Warrior


                              Proverbs 4:23
                              23 Guard your heart above all else,
                              for it determines the course of your life.

                              Comment

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