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Bert Thompson, Ph.D.

To read more on Satan, the Trinity in the Old Testament, and the Messiah, go to page 22 and on. Enjoy!

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INTRODUCTION IS SATAN REAL? ............................................................................................................... 1 ............................................................................................................... 1 The Reality of Satan in the Old Testament..................................................................... 2 The Reality of Satan in the New Testament ................................................................... 3 SATANS ORIGIN ............................................................................................................... 4 Is Satan Deity? ............................................................................................................... 4 Was Satan Created Evil?............................................................................................. 5 Is Satan a Fallen Angel? ................................................................................................. 6 When Did Satan Become Evil? ...................................................................................... 7 WHY HAS SATAN ARRAYED HIMSELF AGAINST BOTH GOD AND MAN?.................................... 7 WHY HAS GOD ALLOWED SATAN TO CONTINUE TO EXIST ........................................................... 9 WHAT IS SATANS MISSION? WHAT ARE SATANS POWERS? CONCLUSION REFERENCES APPENDIX I APPENDIX II ........................................................................................................... 9 ........................................................................................................... 11 ........................................................................................................... 13 ............................................................................................................... 14 Is Satan Lucifer? ......................................................................................................... 15 Resist the Devil .......................................................................................... 17 HOW DOES SATAN CARRY OUT HIS MISSION AGAINST HUMANITY?.......................................... 10 WHAT IS SATANS ULTIMATE DESTINY? ............................................................................................. 12

To read more on Satan, the Trinity in the Old Testament, and the Messiah, go to page 22 and on. Enjoy!



Bert Thompson, Ph.D.

s we make our way through this pilgrimage called life, surely we would count among the strongest aspirations of the human heart the desire to be content and happynot in the mediocre sense of those words, but instead to be genuinely fulfilled and at peace both with ourselves and with the world in general. Oh, how we would like to be able to say with the writer of old (and actually mean it): This is the day which Jehovah hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it (Psalm 118:24). But, as each of us knows all too well from personal experience, not every day causes us to rejoice and be glad. The simple truth is that things do not always go our way. Plans go awry. Fortunes are forfeited. Friendships are broken. Lives are lost. To echo the words of that ancient patriarch so famous for his perseverance in the face of adversity, Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble (Job 14:1). Facing the routine vicissitudes of life would be difficult enough on its own, without any outside force stacking the deck. Unfortunately, however, there is an outside force marshaled against us. Within the pages of Holy Writ, that outside force is identified by a variety of designations, but likely the best known and most widely used is the name: Satan. In the Old Testament (where we first are introduced to the word, and where it is used approximately nineteen times), etymologically the Hebrew term satan is related to an Aramaic verb that means to lie in wait, to oppose, or to set oneself in opposition to. On occasion the term was employed to describe in non-specific terms any adversary, but whenever it was accompanied by the definite article (i.e., the adversary), it always indicated a proper name associated with mankinds greatest adversary, Satan (Hiebert, 1975, 5:282). In the New Testament (where the term Satan is used thirty-six times), the Greek word for Satan (satanas) indicates an adversary, opponent, or enemy, and is always used of Satan, the adversary (Vine, et al., 1985, p. 547). Another designation for our Great Adversarydevilis used thirty-three times in the New Testament, and ...came into English through the German language from the Greek word diabolos. Diabolos means a slanderer, treacherous informer and, traitor (Overton, 1976, 5[4]:3). Exactly who is this devil, Satan, who has established himself as Gods archfiend and mankinds ardent foe? Is he real? If he is, what is his origin? Why has he arrayed himself against both God and man? What is his mission? What are his powers? And what is his ultimate destiny? These are questions that cry out from the human heart for answers. Fortunately, Gods Word provides those answers.

Throughout history, both those who do not accept the Bible as the Word of God (unbelievers), and those who accept it but only marginally so (religious liberals), have disavowed the existence of Satan as a real, personal, spiritual being. Rather, they speak of him as a myth, and of his dealings with mankind as legends invented as vehicles of moral teaching intended to impart great spiritual truths. But neither he nor his activities is accepted as historical reality. For example, atheistic writer Isaac Asimov, who was serving as president of the American Humanist Association at the time of his death in 1992, wrote:
By New Testament times, the Jews had developed, in full detail, the legend that Satan had been the leader of the fallen angels. These were angels who rebelled against God by refusing to bow down before Adam when that first man was created, using as their argument that they were made of light and man only of clay.

- 2 Satan, the leader of the rebels, thought, in his pride, to supplant God. The rebelling angels were, however, hurled out of heaven and into Hell. By the time this legend was developed the Jews had come under Greek influence and they may have perhaps been swayed by Greek myths concerning the attempts of the Titans, and later the Giants, to defeat Zeus and assume mastery of the universe. Both Titans and Giants were defeated and imprisoned underground. But whether Greek-inspired or not, the legend came to be firmly fixed in Jewish consciousness (1968, p. 540, emp. added; see also pp. 408-410).

The assessment of liberal-leaning religious writers does not sound much different. Andrew Zenos of Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Chicago suggested:
The apparent incongruity of a person (i.e., Satan) with such a frame of mind consorting with the other sons of God in the courts of heaven, giving an account of himself to, and speaking on familiar terms with, God, disappears when the narrative is seen to be constructed, not as a picture of realities, but as a vehicle of moral teaching... (1936, p. 811).

Forty-five years later, Neal D. Buffaloe and N. Patrick Murray co-authored a text in which they wrote: By contrast [to the literal, historical view of GenesisBT], the mainstream of Biblical scholarship rejects the literal historicity of the Genesis stories prior to Chapter 12, and finds the literature of parable and symbol in the early chapters of Genesis. Later, in referring to the events of these chapters, including Satans temptation of Eve in the Garden of Eden, the authors stated that these things never were... (1981, pp. 5,8). Because unbelievers reject belief in the spirit entity known as God (and, not coincidentally, the Bible as His Word), it hardly is shocking that they simultaneously repudiate belief in the spirit being known as Satan (whose actual existence can be documented only within Gods Word). Skepticism of, and opposition to, spiritual matters on the part of unbelievers should be expected. Skepticism of, and opposition to, such matters on the part of those professing to be believers should not. The same Bible that informs the religious liberal about the existence of the God in Whom he proclaims to believe, also informs him of the existence of Satanin whom he does not believe. Where is the consistency? Furthermore, consider the emphasis on Satan within the whole of the Sacred Text, the importance placed on the fact of his existence by both the biblical writers and the Son of God Himself, and the critical role he has played in the necessity of Gods great plan of salvation for mankind. The Reality of Satan in the Old Testament From the first book of the Bible (Genesis) to the last (Revelation), the existence of the devil as a real, literal adversary is affirmed. Our first introduction to Satan occurs in Genesis 3 as he arrives on the scene in the form of a serpent to tempt Eve. Speaking of the historical nature of this account, Melancthon W. Jacobus observed:
That there was a real serpent in this transaction cannot be doubted any more than we can doubt the real history throughout. Here, where the facts speak, further explanations are not necessary, nor fitted to the time of the beginning. (1) The real serpent is contrasted with the other animals (vs. 1). (2) In the New Testament, allusion is made to a real serpent in referring to the history (2 Cor. 11:3,14; 1 Jn. 3:8; Rev. 20:2). Yet (3) that there was in the transaction a superior agent, Satan himself, who made use of the serpent, is plain from his being referred to as the old Serpent, called the Devil and Satan (Rev. 12:9)a murderer from the beginning (Jn. 8:44) [1864, 1:112].

Additional Old Testament testimony addresses the historical existence of Satan. In 1 Chronicles 21:1, the text states: And Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel. Six verses later, this simple statement is found: And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel (1 Chronicles 21:7). Israel suffered as a direct result of Satans workings in the life of her monarch. In the book of Job, Satan retains a place of great prominencemore, perhaps, than in any other Bible book. In the first two chapters alone, he is mentioned at least fourteen times. In fact, Job 2:1-2 records a conversation between this mendacious despot and God:

- 3 Again it came to pass on the day when the sons of God came to present themselves before Jehovah, that Satan came also among them to present himself before Jehovah. And Jehovah said unto Satan, From whence comest thou? And Satan answered Jehovah, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

The entire theological thrust of the book of Job is utterly dependent upon the actual existence of Satan, his adversarial nature toward God and mankind, and Heavens ultimate superiority over him. Further, the New Testament book of James boldly refers to Jobs dealings with Satan: Behold, we call them blessed that endured: ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord, how that the Lord is full of pity, and merciful (5:11). What possible meaning could this have had to first-century saints who were enduring extreme persecution and intense suffering as a result of their faith? An imaginary fight between a non-existent devil and a mythical patriarch could not, and would not, provide much comfort to those whose lives were in imminent danger. But a promise that the Lord is full of pity, and mercifulbased on literal, historical eventscould, would, and did provide such comfort in times of peril. In Zechariah 3:1-10, the prophet recorded a vision ...intended to show that Jehovahs people, conditioned upon a moral and spiritual reformation, could again enjoy prosperity (Jackson, 1980, p. 75). In Zechariahs vision, Satan appeared as an adversary of Joshua the high priest, who was clothed with dirty garments that symbolized the sins of the whole nation, of which he was the representative (Hengstenberg, n.d., p. 972).
And he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of Jehovah, and Satan standing at his right hand to be his adversary. And Jehovah said unto Satan, Jehovah rebuke thee, O Satan; yea, Jehovah that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? (3:1-2).

In describing the spiritual importance of this scene, one writer commented: Satan was ready to challenge the Lords own institution for the forgiveness of sin, to deny the right of God to pardon the sinner. He seeks to overthrow the Throne of Grace, so hateful to him, and to turn it into a seat of judgment and condemnation (Laetsch, 1956, p. 422; cf. also Psalm 109:3-8). Satans part in this scenario cannot be overstated. Without his act of overt condemnation, and Gods response to it, Zechariahs message would be lost. The activity and historical reality of Satan in the Old Covenant set the stage for the urgency of Gods plan of salvation in the New. The Reality of Satan in the New Testament Within the pages of the New Testament, the existence of Satan is reaffirmed, and more of his cunning, deceit, and hypocrisy is revealed. Of paramount importance is the record of his temptation of the Son of God (Matthew 4:1-11; cf. Luke 4:1-13). Erich Sauer has noted:
The whole story of the temptation of Jesus proves beyond all doubt that we are here concerned with a factual and personal conflict between two protagonists. The accounts of the evangelists and the behaviour and words of Jesus show clearly that we are not here concerned with a mere principle of evil, but with a real, factually present, speaking and active person, not the evil but the evil one (1962, p. 64).

A few chapters later, Jesus referred to Satan as Beelzebub (Matthew 12:27), a term that originally meant lord of refuse, lord of the flies, or lord of dung (Easton, 1996). As such, it was an expression of contempt signifying all that was the opposite of holiness and purityhardly a name the Lord would apply to some harmless, legendary, mythical character of antiquity. Wayne Jackson has suggested:
As the serpent seduced Eve (Gen. 3:6) through the manifold channels of the lust of the flesh, lust of the eye, and the vainglory of life (I John 2:16), so he sought to solicit Christ to sin similarly (Matt. 4:1-11). Interestingly, he is denominated the tempter in that narrative. The Greek term is peirazon, a present tense participleliterally expanded, the always tempting onewhich suggests his characteristic activity. Had the devil succeeded in causing Christ to sin, the Lord could not have served as the blemishless sin-offering (I Peter 1:19; II Cor. 5:21), and the entire human race would have been forever lost! (1980, p. 76).

- 4 Christs apostles also addressed the fact of Satans existence. And certainly they knew of which they spoke, since Satan is depicted within the pages of the New Testament as their ardent enemy. For example, the Lord informed Peter: Simon, Simon, behold, Satan asked to have you that he might sift you as wheat (Luke 22:31). A fact often overlooked within this text is that the pronoun you in the Greek is plural, indicating that Satan wanted all of the apostles (see Jackson, 1980, p. 76). The apostle Paul spoke of the prince of the power of the air (Ephesians 2:2) who has his devices (2 Corinthians 2:11), and even ministers who disguise themselves as righteous (2 Corinthians 11:15). The apostle John noted that the devil sinneth from the beginning (1 John 3:8), and lamented the fact that the whole world lieth in the evil one (1 John 5:19). Further, Pauls thorn in the flesh was said to have been a messenger of Satan (2 Corinthians 12:7). But perhaps most sinister is the fact that it was Satan who put into the heart of Judas Iscariot the idea to betray his Lord (John 13:2). In addition, various New Testament writers referred to Satan as the author of sin (1 John 3:8), sickness (Acts 10:38), and death (Hebrews 2:14), as well as the one who leads men astray (2 Thessalonians 2:9-10). The authors of Vines Expository Dictionary made an important observation when they stated:
Satan is not simply the personification of evil influences in the heart, for he tempted Christ, in whose heart no evil thought could ever have arisen (John 14:30; 2 Cor. 5:21; Heb. 4:15); moreover his personality is asserted in both the OT and NT, and especially in the latter, whereas if the OT language was intended to be figurative, the NT would have made this evident (1985, p. 547).

What the New Testament makes evident, however, is exactly the oppositei.e., that Satan is not figurative, but very real.

The Bible does not address specifically the origin of Satan, yet there is adequate information to draw a logical, well-reasoned conclusion as to how he came into existence. Consider, for example, the following. Is Satan Deity? Although quite powerful, Satan does not enjoy the status of deity. Clues to this fact are scattered throughout the pages of Holy Writ. Deity is eternal. Scripture speaks of the eternal God (Deuteronomy 33:27) Whose years shall have no end (Psalm 102:27), and Who is the Alpha and the Omega..., who is and who was and who is to come (Revelation 1:8). Deity is omnipotent. He is referred to as God Almighty (Genesis 17:1) Who cannot be restrained (Job 42:2). By the thunder of his power (Job 26:1314) He has the might to create (Genesis 1:1; Isaiah 45:12) or destroy (2 Peter 3:10). He alone retains the power to instill life (Genesis 2:7) and to raise the dead (Ephesians 1:20). Deity is omnipresent. [T]here is no creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and laid open before the eyes of him with whom we have to do (Hebrews 4:13). He is at hand and afar off (Jeremiah 23:23-24). He is able to bring every work into judgment...every hidden thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil (Ecclesiastes 12:14). Deity is omniscient. The psalmist wrote:
O Jehovah, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising; Thou understandest my thought afar off. Thou searchest out my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O Jehovah, thou knowest it altogether.... Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it (139:1-6).

God not only knows the past and the present, but the future as well (Acts 15:18). Indeed, how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past tracing out (Romans 11:33). Satan, by comparison, does not possess these qualities. For example, he is not omnipotent. Scripture affirms: Greater is he [God] that is in you than he [Satan] that is in the world (1 John 4:4). When he sought to sift the apostles as wheat, he first had to ask for them (Luke 22:31). Satan is not omnipresent. His

- 5 position as god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4) was delivered unto him (Luke 4:6). When he eventually is cast permanently into his place of eternal torment, the devil will be powerless to resist (Revelation 20:10). In discussing the apocalyptic literature of the book of Revelation, which speaks of Satans being bound (20:2), Hardeman Nichols observed: The binding of Satan, we conclude, equally means that his work will be restrained in a certain realm... (1978, p. 262). Omnipresence, by definition, is not restrained. Further, Satan is not omniscient. If we are sufficiently knowledgeable of the Word of God, and carefully wield that knowledge to resist him, the devil does not possess a superior knowledge sufficient to overcome us, but will flee (James 4:17; cf. Matthew 4:4). He is not intelligent enough to outwit us in order to snatch us from the Lords hand (John 10:28). The only possible conclusion one can reach regarding Satan is that he is not deity. But such a conclusion has serious implications. If Satan does not partake of the nature of deity, then he cannot be eternal. Thus, he must be a created being. That, as Wayne Jackson has explained, is exactly what he is.
...[S]ince the devil is not of the nature of deity, it is obvious that he is a created being, for all things and beings (outside the class of deity) are the result of creationfor in him were all things created, in the heavens and upon the earth, things visible and things invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers (Col. 1:16); this would include Satan as he originally was (1980, p. 78; emp. in orig.).

Was Satan Created Evil? But what was Satan originally? When was he created? And was he created evil? The biblical evidence may be summarized as follows. The Scriptures categorically state that all things, as they had been created originally, were good. Genesis 1:31 records: And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good (emp. added). In their Old Testament commentary on the Pentateuch, Keil and Delitzsch have observed:
By the application of the term good to everything that God made, and the repetition of the word with the emphasis very at the close of the whole creation, the existence of anything evil in the creation of God is absolutely denied, and the hypothesis entirely refuted, that the six days work merely subdued and fettered an ungodly, evil principle, which had already forced its way into it (1968, 1:67).

Thus, whatever else Satan may have been originally, he was good. God did not create Satan as an evil adversary; rather, Satan became evil. Some, however, have suggested that Gods statement in Isaiah 45:7I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace, and create evil. I am Jehovah, that doeth all these thingsindicates that God does, in fact, create things that are evil. This view results from a misunderstanding of the use of the word evil within the context of that passage. The statement obviously can have no reference to moral evil, since such is contrary to Gods holy nature (see Isaiah 6:3). Deuteronomy 32:4 describes Jehovah as the God of faithfulness and without iniquity. An in-depth examination of the passage in Isaiah reveals that God, through the prophet, was announcing to the (as yet unborn) Cyrus, king of Persia, his intention to use the monarch as an instrument for punishment. Notice in Isaiah 45:7 how the word evil is employed in direct contrast to peace. Gods point was this: I form light and create darkness [viz., I control nature]; I make peace and create evil [viz., I also control nations]; I am Jehovah that doeth all these things. Later in chapter 47, there is a commentary that further explains how the word evil is used in chapter 45, verse 7. In verse 11, as he described the coming judgment upon Babylon, Isaiah said:
Therefore shall evil come upon thee; thou shalt not know the dawning thereof: and mischief shall fall upon thee; thou shalt not be able to put it away: and desolation shall come upon thee suddenly, which thou knowest not (emp. added).

The evil that God created was desolation due to the wickedness of the Babylonian empire. In Isaiah 31:1-2, God similarly warned Israel that if the Hebrew nation forged an untoward alliance with Egypt, He would bring evil (i.e., punishment) upon them. Thus, scholars have observed that evil can be used with a purely secular meaning to denote physical injury (Jeremiah 39:12), or times of distress (Amos 6:3), and

- 6 that is its significance in Isaiah 45:7 (Jackson, 1984, 1:84). When Jobs wife proposed that he curse God and die, his rejoinder was: Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? (Job 2:10; emp. added). Jobs meaning is clear: shall we not receive punishment and correction from the hand of Jehovah, as well as innumerable blessings? The late Rex A. Turner Sr. noted:
Solomon wrote: A prudent man seeth the evil, and hideth himself; But the simple pass on, and suffer for it (Prov. 22:3). The meaning of this statement from Solomon is that the prudent man sees public calamity approaching, and he uses all lawful means to secure himself. Evil here is put for dangers and calamities that befall men. Thus, God creates evil only in the sense that he brings punishment or calamity upon those who do evil. In no sense, therefore, has God created criminal or moral evil. In no sense has God provoked or brought about evil in any angel or man (1989, p. 79).

Is Satan a Fallen Angel? There is compelling textual evidence within the Bible which indicates that originally Satan was one of the angels who inhabited the heavenly realm, and that he (along with others) departed from a righteous state and rebelled against God. There is a hint of this in the Old Testament book of Job. Eliphaz said of God: Behold, he putteth no trust in his servants; and his angels he chargeth with folly (Job 4:18). In discussing this wording, renowned commentator Albert Barnes wrote:
Language like this would hardly be employed unless there was a belief that even the holiness of the angels was not incorruptible, and that there had been some revolt there among a part, which rendered it possible that others might revolt also (1949, 1:lxiii; emp. in orig.).

Indeed, the New Testament seems to confirm that such a revolt did take place. In two separate passages, reference is made to just such an event. The apostle Peter said that God spared not angels when they sinned, but cast them down to hell, and committed them to pits of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment (2 Peter 2:4). Another inspired New Testament writer wrote: And angels that kept not their own principality, but left their proper habitation, he hath kept in everlasting bonds under darkness unto the judgment of the great day (Jude 6). Since the Bible also refers to Satan as the prince of demons (Matthew 12:24), and speaks of the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41, emp. added), ...the only possible conclusion is that the devil is the leader of a group of angels who rebelled against God and were therefore expelled from heaven to eventually spend eternity in hell (Workman, 1981, 1[5]:4). From references such as these, it is clear that God created angels (just as He has men) with the powers of reason and free will, which made it possible for them both to think and to choose. Turner commented:
This is to say that angels had the freedom of choicethe freedom to fear and serve God, and the freedom to refuse to fear and serve God. Without intellect and freedom of absolute choice, angels could not be holy as God is holy. In the absence of free will, coupled with responsibility, there can be no true holiness (1989, p. 82).

But, as Lloyd Ecrement has noted: They, therefore, have the ability to choose good or evil. It is possible, but certainly not necessary, for them to sin. If they choose evil rather than good, that is no reflection upon their Creator, but simply a rebellion against Himthey abuse the powers of reason and a free will given to them by God (1961, p. 33). Apparently, certain of the angels chose wrongly, which is why Peter referred to the angels when they sinned. But John wrote that sin is lawlessness (i.e., transgression of Gods law; 1 John 3:4). In some fashion, then, the angels sin consisted of breaking Gods law by not keeping their proper habitation, but instead departing from whatever appropriate position it was that God had established for them. Since Scripture speaks of the devil and his angels, it becomes reasonable to suggest that Satan was either the instigator, or leader (or both), of this heavenly revolt. What brought about this Satanic rebellion? Nichols, in speaking about sedition against legitimately established authority, has suggested that ...rebellion is generally attempted only by the headstrong and obstinate (1978, p. 262). Henry M. Morris similarly observed:

- 7 The root of all sin, in both man and angels, is the twin sin of unbelief and pridethe refusal to submit to Gods will as revealed by His own Word and the accompanying assertion of self-sufficiency which enthrones the creature and his own will in the place of God. This was the original sin of Satan, rejecting Gods Word and trying to become God Himself (1971, pp. 214-215).

Victor Knowles added:

Perhaps Satan became proud of his position as an angel and reached out, wanting more power and authority. What else could there be in heaven to battle for? It is possible that he may have harbored bitter envy and selfish ambition in his heart, for James says that such wisdom is of the devil (Jas. 3:14,15) [1994, p. 70].

When Did Satan Become Evil? But when, exactly, did all of this take place? Numerous conservative scholars have suggested that likely the creation of the angels occurred during the first day of the creation week, but prior to the creation of the Earth itself (see Jackson, 1980, p. 78; Kelly, 1997, p. 93; Knowles, 1994, p. 69; Turner, 1989, p. 80; Whitcomb, 1972, p. 43). In speaking of God and His original creation, Knowles has commented: Before creation of the world He created the angels, for they observed the process and rejoiced over it (Psa. 148:2,5) (1994, p. 69). John C. Whitcomb concurred when he wrote that the angels must have been created at the very beginning of the first day of creation, for Job 38:6,7 tells of their singing and their shout for joy at the creation of the earth (1972, p. 43). Douglas Kelly also has advocated such a position, but stressed caution, when he wrote:
Neither Genesis, nor any other text in Scripture, states when the angelic beings were actually created. What is definite is that angels are creatures, and thus do have a beginning. They are immortal, but only the Triune God is eternal, without beginning or endings. Reserve is necessary on such a speculative subject that has not been revealed to us by God in his Word.... Perhaps the angels were brought into being on the very first day of creation. In Job 38:4-7 we are told that the angels were present when the foundations of the earth were laid, and were rejoicing over it all. Psalm 104:2-5 speaks of the shining of Gods light during the original creative process, and mentions the angels just before reference to laying the foundations of the earth. Thus they appear after the creation of all things and before the earth is made a solid body.... These passages from Job and Psalms are certainly poetic, and are presumably not meant to be interpreted in the same precise, chronological sense required by Genesis 1 and 2. Poetic though its literary form is, it must mean something, and bear reference to a true state of affairs. Such passages may take us as far as we can go safely in consideration of the question: when were the angels first created? (1997, pp. 93,94).

It is significant to remember, of course, that angels are finite, created spirits who were (and are) amenable to Gods law. Regardless of the exact time of their creation, the fact remains that certain of the angels, Satan among them, disobeyed that law, and as a result were cast from their spiritual abode. It is accurate to state, therefore, that Satan, and those dismissed from the heavenly realm with him, are fallen angels, and that their creation and transgression occurred sometime prior to Gods bringing the Earth into existence.

In any study of Satan, the question is bound to arise: Why has Satan established himself as Gods archfiend and mans ardent foe? No doubt a portion of the answer can be found in the fact that he, too, once inhabited the heavenly realm but, as a result of his defiant rebellion against the great I Am, was cast down to hell (2 Peter 2:4). Satans insurrection failed miserably, and that failure had dire, eternal consequences. His obstinate attempt to usurp Gods authority cost him his position among the heavenly host and doomed him to everlasting bonds under darkness (Jude 6). In the end, his sedition gained him nothing and cost him everything. Regardless of the battle plan he adopted to challenge the Creator of the Universe, regardless of the battlefield he chose as his theater of war, and regardless of the strength or numbers of his army, the simple fact of the matter is thatin the most important contest of his existenceHe lost!

- 8 The conditions of his ultimate surrender were harsh. Although his armies had been thoroughly routed, although he had been completely vanquished, and although the Victor had imposed the worst kind of permanent exile, Satan was determined not to go gently into the night. While he had lost the war, he nevertheless planned future skirmishes. Vindictive by nature (Revelation 12:12), in possession of cunning devices (2 Corinthians 2:11), and determined to be the deceiver of the whole world (Revelation 12:9), he set his face against all that is righteous and holyand never once looked back. His anger at having been defeated fueled his determination to strike back in revenge. But strike back at whom? It was futile to attempt a second mutiny. Gods power was too great, and His omnipotence too all-consuming (Job 42:2; 1 John 4:4). Another target was needed; another repository of satanic revenge would have to be found. And who better to serve as the recipient of hells unrighteous indignation than mankindthe only creature in the Universe made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26-27)? As Turner has suggested: Satan cannot attack God directly, thus he employs various methods to attack man, Gods master creation (1980, p. 89). Sweet revengedespoiling the apple of Gods eye and the zenith of His creative genius! Thus, with the creation of man, the battle was onand has been ever since. Basil Overton warned: Satan is out to get us. He will take advantage of us if we let him. It is a fight to the finish! (1976, 5[4]:3). It was through mankind that Satan would exact his revengethe emphasis here being on the word through. As the apostle Paul stated in Romans 5:12: Therefore, as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin; and so death passed unto all men, for that all sinned (emp. added). Man thus became the agent who caused sin to be in the world. Richard Batey wrote: Pauls point is rather that since the power of sin is a universal human experience (Rom. 1:18-32; 3:9-23), this power must have come into the world through the representative man, Adam (1969, 1:72). As the prince of this world (John 12:31), Satan stalks about as a roaring lion,...seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). He, and his ignominious band of outlaws (sons of the evil oneMatthew 13:38), have worked their ruthless quackery on mankind from the moment the serpent met Eve in the Garden of Eden. Their goal is the spiritual annihilation of mankind, which, no doubt, is why Satan is identified within Scripture as the king of the abyss, the Destroyer (Apollyon, Revelation 9:11; see Easton, 1996), and the wicked one (Belial, 2 Corinthians 6:15; see Vine, et al., 1985, p. 60). In his war against Heaven, Satan will stop at nothing; it is a no holds barred/winner take all battle. Witness, for example, his cruel deception of Eve (Genesis 3:1-6) with its temporal and eternal consequences of physical/spiritual death (1 Corinthians 15:21; Ezekiel 18:20). Recall the trials, tribulations, and tragedies visited upon the Old Testament patriarch, Job (Job 1-2). Take notice of Israels beloved monarch, King David, being tempted and convinced to sin (1 Chronicles 21:1,7). Remember the devil as Joshuas adversary (Zechariah 3:1ff.). Commit to memory Beelzebubs part in Pauls thorn in the flesh (2 Corinthians 12:7), or how he hindered the apostles missionary efforts (1 Thessalonians 2:18). Cower in fear (as the early church didActs 5:11) at the results of his having persuaded Ananias to lie to the Godhead (Acts 5:3). Weep in sadness at the Great Adversarys so successfully convincing Judas to betray His Lord (John 13:2) that Christ referred to him as the devil (John 6:70). Or, tremble in dismay at the potential ruin of humanity, had Satan succeeded in causing Christ to sin when he tempted Him in the wilderness those many years ago (Matthew 4:1-11). Had Jesus yielded, there would have remained no more a sacrifice for sins (Hebrews 10:26), and man would have been doomed destined to inhabit forever the blackness of darkness (Jude 13) in the eternal presence of his most vituperative enemy, but, more important, in the eternal absence of His Creator-God. Make no mistake about it. Satan has arrayed himself against both God and man. He is Gods archfiend, and mans ardent foe. Nothing short of an absolute victory will assuage him; nothing short of a hell filled with every single member of the human race will dissuade him. He is, indeed, the enemy (Matthew 13:39).

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As we study this enemy, another question comes to mind: Why has God allowed Satan to continue to exist? Since he is denominated within the pages of Scripture as a murderer (John 8:44), why not simply impose on him the same death penalty that civilized nations have imposed on murderers from time immemorial (cf. Numbers 35:16)? What possible justification could God have for allowing one so wicked to continue to live? The answer, I am convinced, has to do with the nature of God, and the nature of the spirit beings (angels) that He created. There is a clue regarding this point in the text of Luke 20:33-36. Within this passage, Jesus spoke of the righteous who one day would inhabit heaven, and stated that neither can they die any more, for they are equal unto the angels. If righteous humans who will inhabit heaven cannot die, and if they are equal to the angels, then it follows logically that angels cannot die. While the Godhead is eternal, humans and angels are immortal. As Douglas Kelly correctly observed, angels (and this certainly would include Satan prior to his fall) are immortal, but only the Triune God is eternal (1997, p. 93). In his thought-provoking work, Systematic Theology, Turner addressed the issue of Satans continued existence when he wrote:
Why did God not destroy Satan when he sinned? Why let Satan continue to exist and influence others to sin? The answer here lies in Gods naturehis eternal nature which he has passed on to angels as well as to menfor there will never be a time when the spirits or angels, the evil as well as the good, will cease to exist. Punishments and prescribed limits have been passed upon evil spirits, and the more will be passed upon them, but they will always exist (1989, p. 83).

Scripture delineates angelic beings as immortal; thus, theywhether righteous or sinfulnever will cease to exist. However, there may be more to Satans continued existence than simply the angels immortal nature. In addressing the question of exactly why Satan persists, Lloyd Ecrement has suggested:
Perhaps the reason might well be expressed in the words the Lord asked Moses to say to wicked Pharaoh: For by now I could have put forth my hand and struck you and your people with pestilence, and you would have been cut off from the earth; but for this purpose have I let you live, to show you my power, so that my name may be declared throughout all the Earth (Exodus 9:15,16) [1961, p. 33].

Indeed, from a purely human vantage point, the continuation of evileven for a brief period generally is not viewed as either desirable or ideal. But, as T. Pierce Brown has proposed, God may have allowed Satan to retain his power, temporarily, until he is through using him to test and purify a people for his ultimate glory and purposes (1974, 91[16]:245). Certainly, Gods glory was exemplified by mankinds creation because Isaiah, speaking for Jehovah, said that man was created for my glory (Isaiah 43:7). In John 9, the story is recounted of a man who had been born blind. When Jesus disciples inquired as to the reason for his predicament, He responded that it was so that the works of God should be made manifest in him (John 9:3, emp. added). What all this entails, we may not profess to know, realizing that the secret things belong unto Jehovah our God (Deuteronomy 29:29). But the Scriptures do reveal enough information for us to conclude that Satans continued existence follows logically from the immortal nature of angelic beings. They also reveal that the devils existence is not at variance with Heavens eternal plan, since at times it affords opportunities for mankind to witness God working amidst His creation.


Were Satan made of flesh and bone, we might employ an oft-used phrase and describe him as a man with a mission. But do not let the fact that he is spirit rather than flesh trick you into thinking he has no mission. He most certainly doesand has since the day he was cast from the heavenly portals. Simply stated, that mission is the complete destruction of all humanity in hell.

- 10 Within Scripture, Satan (i.e., our adversary; Zechariah 3:1) routinely is denominated by such unseemly designations as: (a) the devil (i.e., slanderer; Matthew 4:1); (b) the god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4); (c) the prince of the powers of the air (Ephesians 2:2); (d) the father of lies (John 8:44); (e) the Great Dragon (Revelation 12:9); (f) Beelzebub (i.e., prince of demons; Matthew 12:24). (g) the wicked one (Matthew 13:38); (h) the prince of this world (John 12:31); (i) the ruler of darkness (Ephesians 6:12); (j) the tempter (1 Thessalonians 3:5); (k) accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10); (l) a murderer (John 8:44); (m) the enemy (Matthew 13:39); (n) a roaring lion (1 Peter 5:8); (o) a serpent (2 Corinthians 11:3); (p) Belial (i.e., wicked one; 2 Corinthians 6:15); and (q) angel of the bottomless pit (Revelation 9:11). After even a cursory glance at these appellations, surely we could agree with L.O. Sanderson when he wrote: These alone should make us fearfully concerned (1978, 120[43]:678). Satans names describe his mission. His primary goal is to alienate men from God by causing them to sin. His main objective is to make men his slaves, thereby robbing them of the freedom that Gods Word alone can impart (John 8:32). But how, exactly, does Satan do this?


The Bible makes it clear that the devil is the originator, the father, of sin. John wrote: [H]e that doeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning (1 John 3:8). In speaking to this point, Wayne Jackson has written: Disease, infirmity and death are ultimately the responsibility of Satan, for by his introduction of sin into the world, he brought about such woes and hence he is really the murderer of the human family (John 8:44) [1980, p. 76]. However, it is important to recognize that while Satan is the originator of sin, he is not the immediate cause of sin.
Satan tempts, but he cannot compel men to do evil against their wills. A man must yield to Satans temptation and desire before he becomes guilty of sin. To be tempted is not sin, but to yield to temptation is sin. We are answerable and responsible for our own sins, notwithstanding the temptation and influence of the devil. God endowed us with reason and a free will, therefore we have the ability to choose good or evil; in other words, we are free moral agents. So our sins are our own, and our own responsibility (Ecrement, 1961, p. 34).

Satans constant coercion and tantalizing temptation do not, and cannot, override mans free will. James affirmed this in his epistle when he wrote:
But each man is tempted, when he is drawn away by his own lust, and enticed. Then the lust, when it hath conceived, beareth sin: and the sin, when it is fullgrown, bringeth forth death (1:14-15).

As an example of this point, consider the apostle who betrayed the Son of God. Overcome by the grotesque nature of his dastardly deed, Judas eventually lamented: I have sinned in that I betrayed innocent blood (Matthew 27:4). Even in his final hours, he did not attempt to lay the blame for his sin at someone elses feet. Similar lessons are taught in Acts 5 and 2 Samuel 12. In Acts 5, when Ananias and Sapphira lied about the amount they had received from the sale of a piece of land (and the amount they subsequently professed to have donated to the church), Peter inquired of Ananias: How is it that thou hast conceived this thing in thy heart? Thou has not lied unto men, but unto God (Acts 5:4, emp. added). The apostle wanted Ananias to know that he, personally, bore the guilt for his sin. He could not claim (with any legitimacy): The devil made me do it. In 2 Samuel 12, the prophet Nathan was sent by God to convict King David of the sin of adultery with Bathsheba, wife of Urriah the Hittite. This he did. After hearing the evidence against him, David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against Jehovah (12:13). To his credit, David realized that not even powerful potentates are immune to the personal responsibility that accompanies transgression of Gods law.

- 11 If we are responsible for our own actions, how, then, does Satan influence us to sin? In 2 Corinthians 2:11, Paul spoke of the fact that no advantage may be gained over us by Satan: for we are not ignorant of his devices. The word devices in this text derives from the Greek noemata, which refers to intelligent notions, purposes, designs, devices, etc. (Overton, 1976, 5[4]:3). In Ephesians 6:11, Paul admonished Christians to put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. The word wiles derives from the Greek methodeias, from which we get our English word methods. Methodeias is from the Greek verb that means to trace; to investigate; to handle methodically; to handle cunningly.... The devil is a skilled artisan. He will deceive you if you do not work at the job of fighting back at him (Overton, 1976, 5[4]:3). Indeed, deceit is perhaps Satans most powerful tool. Through his devices and wiles, Satan pressures us with all deceit of unrighteousness (2 Thessalonians 2:10). Sanderson has suggested that Satans traits clearly show the Devil to be a cunning, deceitful hypocrite. He is truthless, dishonest, and fraudulent in every possible way (1978, 120[43]:678). Adding to this assessment, L.M. Sweet wrote: Satans power consists principally in his ability to deceive. It is interesting and characteristic that according to the Bible Satan is fundamentally a liar and his kingdom is a kingdom founded upon lies and deceit (1939, 4:2693). The New Testament provides ample evidence to substantiate such a conclusion. Wayne Jackson summarized some of that evidence when he acknowledged that the deceiver:
(1) Delights in blinding the minds of the unbelieving that the light of the gospel should not dawn upon them (II Cor. 4:4). (2) To accomplish this he does not hesitate to transform himself into an angel of light along with his ministers who pretend to be ministers of righteousness (II Cor. 11:14,15). (3) When people are inclined not to believe the truth, the devil takes the gospel from their hearts (Luke 8:12). (4) He is full of trickery. He has his snares (I Tim. 3:7), and employs his wilesa deliberate planning or system (Eph. 4:14; 6:11) [1980, p. 81].

But what power does Satan have that allows him to accomplish his task of deceiving humanity? How extensive is that power, and how is it wielded?


There can be no doubt that, as god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4), Satan is powerful in his own right. When the devil tempted the Son of God in the wilderness, he offered Him all the power and glory of the kingdoms of this world, if only He would fall down and worship him (Matthew 4:9). His justification for this insidious offer was based on his claim that, as the lord of this planet, he could offer its possessions to whomsoever I will (Luke 4:6). Interestingly, Jesus refuted neither Satans position as god of this world nor his ability to impose his will upon it. Erich Sauer therefore concluded:
This whole offer would have been unreal from the first for the Lord as a temptation, if some such legal basis for Satans dominion in the world had not existed. Otherwise Jesus would only have had to point out that the necessary presuppositions for Satans legal claim to and ability to dispose of the glory of the world simply did not exist. The Lord however left this claim of the devils uncontradicted and merely declared that man should worship and serve God alone (Luke 4:8). With this He recognized in principle the tempters right to dispose of the kingdoms of this world in this present age. This same thought lies behind the various sayings of Jesus in which He calls Satan the Prince of this world (John 12:31; 14:30; 16:11) [1962, p. 66].

We would do well to recognize the same thing the Son of God recognized: Satan is an important and powerful foe! As powerful as he is, however, Satan is not omnipotenta fact that even he recognized. During his temptation of Christ, he admitted that his earthly reign hath been delivered unto me (Luke 4:6). When the devil robbed Job of his family and earthly possessions, and even when he afflicted Job physically, he did so only with the expressed permission of God (Job 1:12; 2:6). When he sought to sift Christs apostles as wheat, he first had to ask for them (Luke 22:31). The Scriptures make it clear, therefore, that his powers do have limits.

- 12 But what powers, exactly, are in his possession? When T. Pierce Brown observed that apparently he is able to make some sort of suggestions to the heart (1974, 91[16]:5), he provided a picture window into which we may peer to observe the way Satan works among men. Among Satans impressive powers are these. He perverts the Word of God (Genesis 3:1-4). He instigates false doctrine (1 Timothy 4:1-3). He blinds men to truth (2 Corinthians 4:4). He sows tares among Gods wheat (Matthew 13:24-30,36-43). He steals the Word of God from human hearts (Matthew 13:19). He lays snares for men (2 Timothy 2:26; 1 Timothy 3:7). He tempts (Matthew 4:1; Ephesians 6:11). He afflicts (Job 2:7; Luke 13:16; Acts 10:38; 2 Corinthians 12:7). He deceives (Revelation 12:9; 20:8-10). He undermines the sanctity of the home (1 Corinthians 7:3-5). He prompts both saints and sinners to transgress the laws of God (1 Chronicles 21:1; Matthew 16:22-23; John 13:2; Acts 5:3). He hinders the work of Gods servants (1 Thessalonians 2:18). And he even makes accusations against Gods children before Heavens throne (Job 1:6-11; 2:3-6; 21:1-5; Zechariah 3:14; Revelation 12:9-10). Satan employs his power of suggestions to the heart to pervert the truth. In his book, Get Thee Behind Me Satan, Virgil Leach assessed our much-feared, other-worldly adversary in these words:
He is the great pretender and the first liar and hypocrite with special skills in deception.... No one escapes his trickery; every man knows something of deception. He will influence men to conceal or distort truth for the purpose of misleading, cheating and fraud. If he cannot overthrow truth he will neutralize it, water it down to dilute it. Qualities of guile, craftiness, dissimulation and pretense are used in all his maneuvers. Satan is a master of deceit and is well aware that half lies mixed with half truths more often do the trick and will more easily be swallowed and digested, not that he will not use an out-and-out lie should it fit the occasion. Loving darkness, he would prefer a tree to hide behind than an open field and would prefer an ambush over an open warfare. Our adversary would desire to plant his Judas kiss on the cheek of every man (1977, pp. 1415).

Like a carnivorous lion ready for the hunt (1 Peter 5:8), Satan waits to devour us via his suggestions to the heart. Like a well-hidden, coiled snake (Revelation 20:2), he is able to strike in an instant, injecting the poison of his venom into the minds of men. Or, using what is perhaps the most insidious disguise at his disposal, he even may portray himself as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14) who feigns humility, piety, and righteousness, yet whose intentions all the while are as insincere as they are sanctimonious. What awesome powers the devil commands! What subtle meanness he exhibits! One moment he presents himself as an innocent-faced, sweet-talking angel; the next he is a ravenous mammal or slithering reptile. Little wonder Paul wrote to the Thessalonians:
For this cause I also, when I could no longer forbear, sent that I might know your faith, lest by any means the tempter had tempted you, and our labor should be in vain (1 Thessalonians 3:5)

The apostles inner stirrings on behalf of those he had worked so long, and so hard, to wrest from the devils grasp were based on his knowledge that they faced daily a formidable foe who was more than capable of ravishing both their bodies and their souls.


Is all lost, then? Hardly! Although the Scriptures repeatedly affirm Satans immense power, they likewise affirm that he [God] that is in you is greater than he [Satan] that is in the world (1 John 4:4). We know this to be the case because the Scriptures testify eloquently to the fact that Satanfar from having free reignhas been bound. The concluding book of the New Testament, Revelation, was written to offer encouragement to firstcentury Christians who, because of their professed faith in the Son of God, were threatened hourly with severe persecution even unto death (Revelation 2:10). Within this book, which is written in apocalyptic literature that is highly figurative, the message is one not only of comfort, but also of ultimate victory over the devil and his forces. The twentieth chapter, especially, presents a vivid picture of Gods archfiend and mans ardent enemy, Satan, as being bound (vs. 2) and cast into the abyss (vs. 3). As Hardeman Nichols has suggested:

- 13 If in our study of Revelation 20 we fail to see the final overthrow of Satan and his collaborators, we have missed a major truth. If we do not appreciate the final triumph of every righteous person, we have not been sufficiently blessed by this study (1978, p. 260).

Concerning the devil, Nichols went on to write that [w]hen, in the unspecified eternity before the world he initiated his rebellion, God put a restraint upon him (p. 263). That restraint never has been removed. And, in fact, it has been tightened. While it is true that in the first century the devil and his minions were able to affect people physically (cf. Luke 4:41; 8:26-33), fortunately that no longer is the case. For example, when the prophet Zechariah foretold of the coming of the Messiah and spoke of the blessings that would attend His reign, he stated that eventually the Lord would cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land (13:1-2). Concerning Zechariahs prophecy, Homer Hailey remarked:
Likewise, unclean spirits, the antithesis of the prophets, would cease. In the conquest of Christ over Satan and his forces, unclean spirits have ceased to control men as they did in the time of the ministry of Christ and the apostles (1972, p. 392).

L.M. Sweet correctly observed that in our day and age there is no evidence that Satan is able to any extent to introduce disorder into the physical universe or directly operate in the lives of men (1939, p. 2694). [For a more in-depth discussion of these points than the limited space here will allow, the reader is referred to Jackson, 1990, 1998.]

God not only bound Satan, but also sealed his ultimate doom. Our Lord will be victorious over Heavens Great Adversary, for to this end was the Son of God manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil (I John 3:8). It is via the power inherent in His own death and resurrection that He will bring to nought him that had the power of death, that is, the devil (Hebrews 2:14). The fate that awaits this traitorous tyrant is clear:
And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where are also the beast and the false prophet; and they shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever (Revelation 20:10).

Eternal punishment in hell has been prepared for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). Gods covenant pledge, made with our forefathers in Genesis 3:15, then will be fulfilled once and for all: He [Christ] shall bruise thy [Satans] head. The paradise lost of Genesis will have become the paradise regained of Revelation. With the earthly reign of Satan brought to an end, and the eternal bliss of Gods saints secure, then we shall be able to say with the psalmist of old: This is the day which Jehovah hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it (118:24).

To read more on Satan, the Trinity in the Old Testament, and the Messiah, go to page 22 and on. Enjoy!

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Asimov, Isaac (1968), Asimovs Guide to the Bible: The Old Testament (New York: Avon). Barnes, Albert (1949 edition), Job, Barnes Notes on the Old and New Testaments (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker). Buffaloe, Neal D. and N. Patrick Murray (1981), Creationism and Evolution (Little Rock, AR: The Bookmark). Batey, Richard (1969), The Letter of Paul to the Romans (Austin, TX: Sweet). Brown, T. Pierce (1974), Some Questions and Answers About Satan, Firm Foundation, 91[16]:245,251, April 16. Easton, M.G. (1996), Eastons Bible Dictionary (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems). Ecrement, Lloyd L. (1961), Man, the Bible, and Destiny (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans). Hailey, Homer (1972), A Commentary on the Minor Prophets (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker). Hengstenberg, E.W. (no date), Christology of the Old Testament (MacDonald Dill AFB: MacDonald Publishing). Hiebert, D.E. (1975), Satan, The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible, ed. Merrill C. Tenney (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan). Jackson, Wayne (1980), Satan, Great Doctrines of the Bible, ed. M.H. Tucker (Knoxville, TN: East Tennessee School of Preaching). Jackson, Wayne (1984), Questions and Answers, Essays in Apologetics, ed. Bert Thompson and Wayne Jackson (Montgomery, AL: Apologetics Press). Jackson, Wayne (1990), Miracles, Giving a Reason for Our Hope, ed. Winford Claiborne (Henderson, TN: FreedHardeman College). Jackson, Wayne (1998), Demons: Ancient Superstition or Historical Reality?, Reason & Revelation, 18:25-31, April. Jacobus, Melancthon W. (1864), Critical and Explanatory Notes on Genesis (Philadelphia, PA: Presbyterian Board of Publication). Keil, C.F. and Franz Delitzsch (1968 edition), Commentary on the Old TestamentThe Pentateuch (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans). Kelly, Douglas F. (1997), Creation and Change (Geanies House, Fearn, United Kingdom: Christian Focus Publications). Knowles, Victor (1994), Angels and Demons (Joplin, MO: College Press). Laetsch, Theo (1956), The Minor Prophets (St. Louis, MO: Concordia). Leach, Virgil (1977), Get Thee Behind Me Satan (Abilene, TX: Quality). Morris, Henry M. (1971), The Bible Has the Answer (Nutley, NJ: Craig Press). Nichols, Hardeman (1978), The Binding of Satan, Premillennialism: True or False, ed. Wendell Winkler (Fort Worth, TX: Winkler Publications). Overton, Basil (1976), Satan, The World Evangelist, 5[4]:3, November. Sanderson, L.O. (1978), The Devil and His Wiles, Gospel Advocate, 120 [43]:678, October 26. Sauer, Erich (1962), The King of the Earth (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans). Sweet, L.M. (1939), Satan, International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans). Turner, Rex A. Sr. (1980), Systematic Theology (Montgomery, AL: Alabama Christian School of Religion). Vine, W.E., Merrill F. Unger, and William White (1985), Vines Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words (Nashville, TN: Nelson). Whitcomb, John C. (1972), The Early Earth (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker). Workman, Gary (1981), Is the Devil a Fallen Angel?, The Restorer, 1[5]:4, April. Zenos, Andrew C. (1936), Satan, A New Standard Bible Dictionary, ed. Melancthon W. Jacobus (New York: Funk and Wagnalls).

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Go to page 32 to read more on this topic!

It is sad, but nevertheless true, that on occasion Bible students attribute to Gods Word facts and concepts that it neither teaches nor advocates. These ill-advised beliefs run the entire gamutfrom harmless misinterpretations to potentially soul-threatening false doctrines. Although there are numerous examples from both categories that could be listed, perhaps one of the most popular misconceptions among Bible believers is that Satan also is designated as Lucifer within the pages of the Bible. What is the origin of the name Lucifer, what is its meaning, and is it a synonym for Satan? Here are the facts. The word Lucifer is used in the King James Version only once, in Isaiah 14:12: How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! The Hebrew word translated Lucifer is hll (or heylel), from the root, hll, meaning to shine or to bear light. Keil and Delitzsch noted that [i]t derives its name in other ancient languages also from its striking brilliancy, and is here called ben-shachar (son of the dawn)... (1982, 7:311). However, the KJV translators did not translate hll as Lucifer because of something inherent in the Hebrew term itself. Instead, they borrowed the name from Jeromes Bible translation (A.D. 383-405) known as the Latin Vulgate. Jerome, likely believing that the term described the planet Venus, employed the Latin term Lucifer (light-bearing) to designate the morning star (Venus). Only later did the suggestion originate that Isaiah 14:12ff. was speaking of the devil. Eventually, the name Lucifer came to be synonymous with Satan. But is Satan Lucifer? No, he is not. The context into which verse 12 fits begins in verse 4 where God told Isaiah to take up this parable against the king of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased! In his commentary on Isaiah, Albert Barnes explained that Gods wrath was kindled against the king because the ruler intended not to acknowledge any superior either in heaven or earth, but designed that himself and his laws should be regarded as supreme (1950, 1:272). The chest-pounding boast of the impudent potentate was:
I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; and I will sit upon the mount of congregation, in the uttermost parts of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High (vss. 13-14).

As a result of his egotistical self-deification, the pagan monarch eventually would experience both the collapse of his kingdom and the loss of his lifean ignominious end that is described in vivid and powerful terms. Sheol from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming, the prophet proclaimed to the once-powerful king. And when the ruler finally descends into his eternal grave, captives of that hidden realm will taunt him by saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms? (vs. 16). He is denominated as a man (vs. 16) who would die in disrepute and whose body would be buried, not in a kings sarcophagus, but in pits reserved for the downtrodden masses (vss. 19-20). Worms would eat his body, and hedgehogs would trample his grave (vss. 11,23). It was in this context that Isaiah referred to the king of Babylon as the morning star (son of the morning; son of the dawn) to depict the once-shining-but-now-dimmed, once-lofty-but-now-diminished, status of the (soon to be former) ruler. In his Bible Commentary, E.M. Zerr observed that such phrases were ...used figuratively in this verse to symbolize the dignity and splendor of the Babylonian monarch. His complete overthrow was likened to the falling of the morning star (1954, 3:265). This kind of phraseology should not be surprising since [i]n the O.T., the demise of corrupt national powers is frequently depicted under the imagery of falling heavenly luminaries (cf. Isa. 13:10; Ezek. 32:7), hence, quite appropriately in this context the Babylonian monarch is described as a fallen star [cf. ASV] (Jackson, 1987, 23:15).

- 16 Nowhere within the context of Isaiah 14, however, is Satan depicted as Lucifer. In fact, quite the opposite is true. In his commentary on Isaiah, Burton Coffman wrote: We are glad that our version (ASV) leaves the word Lucifer out of this rendition, because...Satan does not enter into this passage as a subject at all (1990, p. 141). The Babylonian ruler was to die and be buriedfates neither of which Satan is destined to endure. The king was called a man whose body was to be eaten by worms, but Satan, as a spirit, has no physical body. The monarch lived in and abided over a golden city (vs. 4), but Satan is the monarch of a kingdom of spiritual darkness (cf. Ephesians 6:12). And so on. The context presented in Isaiah 4:4-16 not only does not portray Satan as Lucifer, but actually militates against it. Keil and Delitzsch firmly proclaimed that Lucifer, as a synonym, ...is a perfectly appropriate one for the king of Babel, on account of the early date of the Babylonian culture, which reached back as far as the grey twilight of primeval times, and also because of its predominate astrological character (1982, p. 312). They then correctly concluded that Lucifer, as a name given to the devil, was derived from this passage...without any warrant whatever, as relating to the apostasy and punishment of the angelic leaders (pp. 312-313).

Barnes, Albert (1950 edition), Barnes Notes on the Old and New TestamentsIsaiah (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker). Coffman, James Burton (1990), The Major ProphetsIsaiah (Abilene, TX: ACU Press). Jackson, Wayne (1987), Your Question & My Answer, Christian Courier, 23:15, August. Keil, C.F. and Franz Delitzsch, (1982 edition), Commentary on the Old TestamentIsaiah (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans). Zerr, E.M. (1954), Bible Commentary (Bowling Green, KY: Guardian of Truth Publications).

- 17 -


Go to page 30 to read the article "Is the World in a Conflict Between Good and Evil?"

The warfare for the souls of men has continued ever since Eve first fell prey to Satans deceit in the great long ago (Genesis 3:1-6; cf. 1 Timothy 2:14). At times, it seems that humanity has taken one step forward and two steps backward in this critical conflict between good and evil. One ancient, inspired writer lamented: [F]or all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23), with the end result being that the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23). One modern, non-inspired writer lamented: Even now there are millions who consciously worship Satan and many more millions who are increasingly open in their hatred of God (Morris, 1971, p. 215). Not a very pretty picture, is it? Is our battle against Gods archfiend and mans ardent enemy a losing one? Are Satans powers too great for us to overcome? Shall we simply give in, give up, and raise the white flag in ultimate surrender, knowing that we are beaten down and destroyed by a foe whose powers know no limits? What shall be the end of this matter? While we never should underestimate Satans power and ability, neither should we underestimate the power and ability of our great God and His Word. Satan may have the power to ensnare us, but Jehovah has the power to remove us from that snare (2 Timothy 2:26). Truly, the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptation (2 Peter 2:9). But we have a part to play in that deliverance. Steadfast, unmovable faith is the key (1 Peter 5:9; 1 Corinthians 15:58). John wrote: For whatsoever is begotten of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that hath overcome the world, even our faith (1 John 5:4). We must not, we cannot, be ignorant of his devices (2 Corinthians 2:11). Neither can we be double-minded (James 1:8), nor lukewarm (Revelation 3:15-16). Rather, we must be alert to the ever-present danger that our enemy represents. Like Abraham of old, we must stand firm. Abraham, looking unto the promise of God, wavered not through unbelief, but waxed strong through faith, giving glory to God, and being fully assured that what he had promised, he was able also to perform (Romans 4:20-21). But how do we accomplish this? What weapons may be found in our arsenal? And how may they be employed successfully against this, the most pervasive and powerful of enemies? First, we need battle armor, which is why Paul wrote:
Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world-rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Wherefore take up the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and, having done all, to stand (Ephesians 6:10-13).

What, exactly, is the whole armor of God? The apostle went on to explain himself in the same context when he wrote:
Stand therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; withal taking up the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: with all prayer and supplication praying at all seasons in the Spirit, and watching thereunto in all perseverance and supplication for all the saints (Ephesians 6:14-18).

Is not this the exact same weaponry employed by our Lord in His spiritual struggle with Satan in the wilderness? Each time the devil tempted Him, the Lords resistance was couched in the repetitive refrain: It is written (Matthew 4:4,7,10), after which the Scriptures state simply: Then the devil leaveth him (Matthew 4:11).

- 18 Seizing upon Christs example, years later the inspired James would write: Resist the devil, and he will flee from you (James 4:7, emp. added). If we steep ourselves in a working knowledge of Gods Word, if we take courage and press on, if we adamantly refuse to give in or give up, we, like Paul, can say:
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or anguish, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Even as it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; We were accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:35-39).

Second, we must realize that while God will not necessarily act to prevent our temptation by Satan, neither will He allow us to be tempted beyond what we are able to endure. Paul wrote: There hath no temptation taken you but such as man can bear: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation make also the way of escape, that ye may be able to endure it (1 Corinthians 10:13). Third, we should remember that while Satan indeed may be the accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10), we have an AdvocateJesus the ChristWho stands with us, pleads our case, protects us, and refuses to forsake us. The same apostle that wrote the beautiful book of Revelation to comfort first-century saints who were losing their lives daily to the evil one also wrote: We have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous (1 John 2:1). The Hebrew writer said that he is able to save to the uttermost them that draw near unto God through him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them (7:25). What a great consolationto know that the Son of God stands before the great white throne in the city set foursquare to plead our case before the Judge of all the earth Who will do what is right (Genesis 18:25). Fourth, let us never forget that victory is within our grasp. The outcome of the battle for the souls of men already has been decided. As Paul said: And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly (Romans 16:20). We may defect from Gods army if we so desire, and become AWOL as a result. Through the millennia, many have done exactly that. They grew weary of the battle, and gave up. They set aside the whole armor of God. They stripped away the loincloth of truth. They discarded the breastplate of righteousness. They took off the shoes of the gospel of peace. They laid down the shield of faith. They removed the helmet of salvation. But they did so at their own peril. Judas, for example, became so filled with the essence of Satan that Jesus referred to him as the devil (John 6:70). When Paul wrote the Ephesian Christians, he warned: Leave no loop-hole for the devil (4:27, NEB). But some did. Two early Christians, Hymenaeus and Alexander, were so overcome by the devil that Paul told Timothy he had delivered [them] unto Satan (1 Timothy 1:20). When God spoke through John to the church at Thyatira, He indicated that some of those Christians had become so wicked as to know the deep things of Satan (Revelation 2:24). What a horrible indictment! And what a needless waste! Obviously, these individuals had ignored the Lords admonition: Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation (Matthew 26:41). As a result, they never would be able to say with the great apostle to the Gentiles, and with the faithful of all the ages: But thanks be to God, who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:57).

Morris, Henry M. (1971), The Bible Has the Answer (Nutley, NJ: Craig Press).

Who Is Satan?
Dear Rabbi Singer: When you were in Buffalo, NY in November of 96, during the extended question and answer time, you were asked your view on angels and specifically about Satan. I was astounded at your answer and was more astounded that the other rabbis present did not step into the discussion. In your explanation of Satan and other fallen angels you attributed the creation of evil to G-d thus making Him responsible for evil. There are at least 87 references to G-ds holiness in Leviticus alone! In 11:44 G-d says, I AM HOLY. Is not holiness the absence of sin? There are many scriptures to prove that G-d hates sin (evil), that He cannot tolerate evil in His presence. How, then, can you attribute evil to G-d? I am interested in the Biblical support for your statement. I have a fair understanding of Judaism and have found nothing in all of my reading to support your view as traditional. Awaiting your reply. A seeker after truth

Answer: The rabbis to whom you made reference have spent their entire lives immersed in the study of the Jewish scriptures as well as other sacred Jewish literature and were, therefore, not astounded by the Judaism that was taught in Buffalo that evening, as you were. Why werent the rabbis stunned by these Jewish teachings on Satan? Because the Hebrew Scriptures explicitly declare that the Almighty Himself places both the good and the evil that He created before mankind in order to provide His prime creation with free will. Deuteronomy 30:15 states, See, I [God] have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil. In Isaiah 45:7, the prophet describes Gods creation plan when he reports that, I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace, and create evil; I the Lord do all these things. I did not invent these verses, nor did I tamper with them. In fact, the Bible I used in the above quotations is the King James Version, which is a translation that could hardly be construed as friendly to the Jewish faith. These edifying verses underscore the fundamental biblical teaching that it is the perfect spiritual balance of good and evil in the world that confronts every searching soul. This is the Almightys divine sovereign plan for creation: It is through mans personal decision to turn away from evil and choose good that virtue can be attained. Isaiah 45:7 and Deuteronomy 30:15, however, pose a serious theological problem for Christians who maintain that God did not create Satan, the angel of evil. According to Christian doctrine, Satan was the highest-ranking angel who, through his own act of spiritual defiance and outright

disobedience, became the chief adversary and slanderer of God and the embodiment of evil in this world. In Christian theology God never created evil; He is only the author of righteousness and perfection, as you maintained in your question. Therefore, God could never create something as sinister as the devil himself. Rather, Satans unyielding wickedness is the result of his own spiritual rebellion. Although this well-known Christian doctrine has much in common with the pagan Zoroastrian Persian dualism out of which it was born, it is completely alien to the teachings of the Jewish faith and the words of the Jewish scriptures. In fact, the Christian teaching that Satan was originally intended by God to be a good angel but, in an act of outright defiance, ceased to function as God had intended him to, suggests that God created something imperfect or defective. For the Jewish faith, Satans purpose in seducing man away from God poses no problem because Satan is only an agent of God. As a servant of the Almighty, Satan faithfully carries out the divine will of his Creator as he does in all his tasks. Satan is one of the many angels mentioned in the Bible. It is worth noting that the Hebrew word for angel is malach, meaning messenger. The same is true for the English word angel, derived from the Greek word angelos, which also means messenger. Throughout the Bible, an angel is a messenger of God who carries out the divine will of the Almighty. There is not one example in the Jewish scriptures where any angel, Satan included, opposes Gods will. In no part of the Bible is this more evident than in the Book of Job. In the first chapter of Job, Satan appears with other angels before God and suggests that Jobs steadfast faithfulness would not withstand personal pain and utter destitution. Satan then requests from God the chance to test Jobs virtue. The Almighty grants this request, but He meticulously outlines for Satan what he may and may not do when putting Job to the test. Satan obediently follows his Creators instructions. Job is immediately put to the test and, by the third chapter, begins to struggle. He questions his Maker as to why he was created and, in a moment of despair, wishes aloud that he had perished in his mothers womb. Still, by the end of this unparalleled biblical narrative, Jobs virtue prevails over Satans unyielding torment. While in Christian terms Jobs personal spiritual triumph is a theological impossibility, in Jewish terms it stands out as the embodiment of Gods salvation program for mankind. In Deuteronomy 30:15, the Torah attests to this principle and in Isaiah 45:7, the prophet echoes this message when he declares that the Almighty Himself creates evil. This biblical principle, however, was apparently too problematic for the Christian translators of the NIV Bible (New International Version). They clearly recognized that a Bible which asserts that God creates evil calls into question one of Christendoms most cherished teachings on salvation. How can the church insist that man is totally depraved when his God placed him in a world where he is free to choose good over evil? How can the church hold to a doctrine of election or predestination when free will is mans to express? How can Christians maintain that God did not create evil when the Jewish scriptures clearly state otherwise? Understandably, the NIV translators saw fit to alter the prophets words by rendering the offensive Hebrew word rah as disaster instead of correctly translating it as bad or evil. The NIV Bible therefore mistranslates Isaiah 45:7 to read, I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the Lord, do all these things.

The word disaster inserted by the NIV is so ambiguous that the uninformed reader would easily come to the conclusion that it refers to such things as earthquakes and hurricanes. This skewed understanding created by the NIV mistranslation effectively conceals Isaiahs original message. As mentioned above, the KJV (King James Version) does correctly translate this verse and render the Hebrew word rah as evil. One final point is in order here. Christians often point to Isaiah 14:12 as a biblical reference to support their teachings of the final and complete downfall of Satan which brings to an end the long and otherwise successful career of this fallen angel. They argue that Isaiahs mention of the fallen morning star refers to Satans ultimate demise at the end of time when Satan will finally be cast into a lake of fire as articulated in the twentieth chapter of the Book of Revelation. There are, however, two serious problems with this assertion. First, if Christians maintain that the morning star is a reference to Satan, how do they explain Revelation 22:16 where Jesus is called the morning star as well? Secondly, a cursory reading of the fourteenth chapter of Isaiah reveals that the morning star spoken of in Isaiah 14:12 is referring to Nebuchadnessar, the wicked King of Babylon, and not to Satan. In 14:4 the prophet explicitly names the king of Babylon as the subject of the prophecy. That thou shall take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased, the golden city ceased! Throughout this chapter and the preceding chapter of Isaiah, the prophet foretells the rise and fall of this arrogant king who would use his unbridled power to plunder Jerusalem and destroy its Temple but, at the end, would suffer a cataclysmic downfall. In 14:12 Nebuchadnezzar is compared to the planet Venus whose light is still visible in the morning yet vanishes with the rise of the sun. Like the light of Venus, Nebuchadnezzars reign shone brilliantly for a short time, yet, as the prophets foretold, was eventually overshadowed by the nation of Israel whose light endured and outlived this arrogant nation who tormented and exiled her. Yours, Rabbi Tovia Singer

PLEASE visit these useful websites for more information:

www.MessiahTruth.com : The Real Jewish Messiah www.jewsforjudaism.org Response to Missionaries www.outreachjudaism.org An international organization that responds directly to the issues raised by missionaries and cults. http://jdstone.org/cr/index.html Reveals the error, distortions and falsehood of... http://www.kosherjudaism.com/counter.htm Archive of Articles; trinity, messiah, Jesus, Christianity... http://www.angelfire.com/my/tgoldman0/prophet.htm An Explanation of Christians Prophecies www.TorahAtlanta.com Jewish Articles and Response to Christian claims on G-d and the Messiah.

Does Judaism Believe in Satan?

(This article should be read after my article Why Did G-d Create the World?)

The Christians don't understand how an angel of G-d can try to seduce people to disobey G-d, so they came to the unsupported conclusion that Satan must have rebelled against G-d. This is completely contrary to everything Judaism believes. We reject that interpretation entirely. What, then, does Judaism teach about Satan? Did you ever see the movie Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory? (It's one of the few examples of where a story from a book was changed for the screen without ruining the experience.) The story is about a very famous chocolate factory, called Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory, that produces the world's greatest chocolates, candies -- confectionery in general. No one ever enters the factory, and no one ever leaves. Mr. Wonka, the owner, runs a contest. The winners of the contest will be allowed to enter and tour the factory together. However, they will have to sign a contract and follow the rules. One of the rules is: no eating of any products inside the factory without express permission. Afterwards, when they leave, they will go home with a lifetime supply of chocolate. That is, *IF* they follow the rules. Five children win. They are of course all excited; TV stations and reporters interview them, and the whole world is excited with them. Now they just wait until the day they are to enter the factory and see the great wonders that no one else has ever been allowed to see. Before the big day comes, each of the winners of the contest is secretly visited by a man named Arthur Slugworth, President of Slugworth Chocolates, Incorporated. Mr. Slugworth shows them a lot of cash, and tells them they will get all that money and more, if only they steal out of the factory a candy called an Everlasting Gobstopper. See, it hasn't been mass produced or marketed yet, and Wonka's competition wants to get an advance sample of this product so he can get it out first, and ruin Wonka. The day comes, and all the kids are allowed into the factory with one adult relative. They see the most amazing sights, and eat the most amazing (and impossible to actually exist in real life) foods. One of the things Wonka gives each of the kids is an Everlasting Gobstopper, on the condition that they never show it to anyone else. During the tour of the factory, four of the kids break the rules by taking stuff they should not have taken, and they all suffer the consequences. One gets all swollen up and blue from some gum she should not have taken, and they have to take her away and squeeze her until she gets skinny again. One of the kids jumps into a pool of chocolate and is sucked up into the pipes. And so on. They are all saved in the end, so don't worry, but they must leave the factory without the lifetime supply of chocolate, because they broke the rules.

Charlie, the main character, also breaks the rules. He drinks some Fizzy drink he was not supposed to take, but no one seems to know, so he doesn't say anything. He doesn't get hurt in the process, so he survives until the end of the tour. At the end of the tour, Charlie Bucket and his grandfather are the only ones left. Mr. Wonka says good bye to them, and tells them to leave. Upset, Charlie asks him for the lifetime supply of chocolate. But Mr. Wonka has somehow found out that Charlie drank the Fizzy drink, and therefore broke the rules. Charlie will not be getting a lifetime supply of chocolate either. Wonka yells at him for drinking the Fuzzy drink, and Charlie feels bad. But his grandfather is angry, and he tells Charlie that they'll give Mr. Slugworth an Everlasting Gobstopper. They are about to leave, when Charlie realizes that no matter how he feels, stealing and breaking rules is bad. So he goes to Mr. Wonka's desk and returns the Gobstopper to him. Wonka sees that, and jumps up in delight! He tells Charlie that he has won! Charlie has no idea of what he's talking about. It seems that Wonka was looking to retire, and so he set up the contest to find an honest child he could train as his successor. Then Wonka calls in Wilkinson, his aide. And Wilkinson is Slugworth! Slugworth was sent out to each of the children to test them! To see how they would respond. Anyone who either ate food he wasn't supposed to eat or brought a Gobstopper to Slugworth was dishonest, and would not become the successor. (Okay, the parable is not exact, but I think you get my point.) Notice, also, that Wonka himself gave each of the children a Gobstopper. So he himself set up the choice, and then gave them the opportunity to break the rule, using Wilkinsin to offer the temptation. Christians take Slugworth at face value: a reprehensible competitor who will stop at nothing to undo Wonka. And that's how they view Satan. Jews do not see it that way, and we never have. Just as Slugworth is really Wilkinson doing what Wonka asked him to do, Satan is also not working for himself. The Hebrew word "Satan" means "Hinderer." To hinder someone means to hold him back, to try to prevent him from doing something. G-d created the Hinderer to give us work to do in this world (see my article Why did G-d Create the World?). Satan is here to make things difficult for us, so we can overcome our evil temptations, and PASS the test. That is the purpose of Satan. Satan is an angel whose purpose has been determined by G-d. Temptation is there to try and deter us. It gives us the ability to do the wrong thing. More importantly, it gives us the ability to look at evil and refuse to do it. By presenting us with the opportunity to do evil, it gives us the ability to choose between good and evil. The ability to choose between good and evil is what gives us free will. (See my article On the Nature of Free Will. So, in order for us to work for the good that Hashem wants to give us, the good of the World to Come, we need something to deter us. That is the ability to do evil. Satan is our Evil Inclination (Yetzer Hara). The Evil Inclination tries to prevent us from doing good, because Hashem has commanded the Evil Inclination to do that. Why? To give us free will.

Each of us every day fights with Satan. We all have temptations, throughout the day. But we, as the Children of Israel, have the power to overcome even angels, if we work at it. Therefore, the Talmud says that men are greater than angels, for we can fight with an angel (Satan) and win. Satan is not, as the Christians think, a rebellious angel. How impossible! The angels are spiritual and holy, without any physical or unholy presence, and the presence of Hashem's holiness permeates them entirely. Angels, unlike humans, are therefore constantly and fully aware of Hashem's Presence everywhere. Could you stay dry in the ocean? An angel could not stop being holy, and can do no wrong. There is holiness everywhere in Creation, everywhere in the universe, and angels are made of the same thing. An angel could not stop serving G-d even if he tried. Furthermore, humans have Satan to tempt us. Angels have no Satan to tempt them. Who would be Satan's Satan? An ultra-Satan? The truth is that Satan has a job to do, just like every other angel. And angels have no free will. They do as Hashem commands them. A man once came to a great Rabbi, very troubled. He said to the Rabbi, "Please pray to Hashem to take away my Evil Inclination. I do so many sins, and I want to stop sinning!" The Rabbi answered, "Then what would be your purpose in this world, if you had no Evil Inclination? Your purpose in life is to overcome your personal Evil Inclination. That is what you were created for! Hashem has enough angels in heaven. He doesn't need one more. He created you human, so that you could improve yourself." Humans can improve themselves, and that is their purpose in this world. Angels, however, cannot improve themselves. That's not their purpose. Angels are therefore said to be "standing." They cannot become better, and they cannot rise any higher than they are. They are, so to speak, standing. Isaiah, when describing a Heavenly scene, says "Seraphim were standing around Him...." (Isaiah 6:2). (Seraphim are a type of angel.) Spiritually, angels are stuck at whatever level Hashem created them. Humans are different. Humans can rise by improving themselves. For that reason, we are described as "walkers." Therefore the Prophet Zachariah told the High Priest, "This is what Hashem, L-rd of Hosts says: if you walk in My ways, and if you observe My safeguards, you and your sons after you will be the High Priests, and you and your sons will thus guard my Holy Temple, and I will make you walkers among these who are standing" (Zachariah 3:7). In other words, Hashem was promising the High Priest that he and his children will be High Priests, and also will merit reward in the Afterlife, in the World of Souls, where righteous people go after death. The Prophet Zachariah was saying that in the Next World they will be walkers among the standers, which means humans among angels. So the angels are referred to as perpetually standing, but we are movers. Our purpose is to keep on moving, to keep on improving ourselves, and to keep on rising.

And how do we do it? By constant battle with the Evil Inclination. So now we have to revise our understanding of Satan. Satan is not a fallen angel. Satan is merely an angel with a dirty job. Satan does not have a rival kingdom. Satan is not in competition with G-d, and Satan does not want followers or worshipers. He's not even happy when people obey him and sin. Satan is the angel who tempts us, and the angel who prosecutes us in Heaven. He is also the Angel of Death. The angel who tries to make us sin is the same angel who accuses us in the Heavenly Court, and the same angel who carries out the death sentence. So, no, Satan does not wear a red suit, or carry a trident. Nor does he wear a business suit. Satan is a force of evil in the world that we must resist. Satan most often appears as a desire within you. Of course, there is no shortage of things in the world to tempt us to sin. And Satan has many "helpers," many of whom don't even know they are helping him. A shadylooking character in the street walks over to you and offers to sell you some stolen property, for example. He's not Satan. He's someone who has not resisted Satan, and has decided to do evil. He's now trying to tempt you to sin, but not because he wants you to sin per se. He personally has something to gain from your sinning. Whenever a human being tries to tempt another person to sin, it's because he himself feels he can gain something from it. It may be simply that he doesn't want to sin alone. Or maybe he needs your help. Or maybe he just gets emotional satisfaction out of seeing you go against what you believe (in which case he is a very sick person, but unfortunately not unusual). There could be any number of motivations. Likewise, the snake in the Garden of Eden was not Satan either, though confused Christians think it was. The snake had his own motivations, which I will not go into now. He was what the Torah calls a "Seducer," someone who, for whatever reason, tries to get other people to sin. How does one recognize Satan? For that we need to live a Torah life. This means a host of things that work together. To mention a few: Torah study, spending quality and quantity time among Observant Jewish people, learning from Rabbis and other religiously developed Jewish people, periodic introspection, and actual self-development by means of performing the Mitzvos. It is difficult (if at all possible) to cite any of these as being more important than any of the others. None of us are capable of destroying Satan. What we are expected and commanded to do is to gain the upper hand over our personal Satans. And Hashem helps us do this, constantly. The Talmud says that the Evil Inclination constantly attempts to destroy us spiritually, and Hashem constantly helps us and gives us the means with which to overcome our Evil Inclinations. When this world comes to an end, and the Next World begins, the Day of Judgment will take place. After that, Satan's work will be done. There will no longer be sin, and there will no longer be death. All judgment will have been passed and performed. There will no longer be any need for a Tempting Angel, an Angel of Death, or a Prosecuting Angel. Satan will cease to exist. It will not be a sad day at all.

Nor will it be unfair treatment of Satan. It will be like turning off a machine. Angels are not like humans, with human emotions and desires. They exist merely to follow Hashem's instructions, for the greater glory of Hashem. That's the reason we exist too -- to follow Hashem's instructions for the greater glory of Hashem. So Satan was created to struggle against us, and we were put into this world to struggle against Satan. But that was not the purpose of our being created. When the struggle is over we will begin to receive the reward for having struggled. We will be brought in to the Next World, and the struggle will end. That's when the good times will begin. Read more about this in my article, "Is the World in a Conflict Between Good and Evil?" If you're a Christian, and/or you're here looking for Scriptural arguments and polemics, take a look at this article: "Who Is Satan?" by Rabbi Tovia Singer.

PLEASE visit these useful websites for more information:

www.MessiahTruth.com : The Real Jewish Messiah www.jewsforjudaism.org Response to Missionaries www.outreachjudaism.org An international organization that responds directly to the issues raised by missionaries and cults. http://jdstone.org/cr/index.html Reveals the error, distortions and falsehood of... http://www.kosherjudaism.com/counter.htm Archive of Articles; trinity, messiah, Jesus, Christianity... http://www.angelfire.com/my/tgoldman0/prophet.htm An Explanation of Christians Prophecies www.TorahAtlanta.com Jewish Articles and Response to Christian claims on G-d and the Messiah.

Is the World in a Conflict Between Good and Evil?

(This article should be read after my article Does Judaism Believe in Satan?)

In Judaism we do not see it as there being a conflict between good and evil. Some ancient religions believed that there are two forces in the universe, one good and one evil, and that they are constantly warring with each other. This was common to Mithraism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, and later to Manichaeism. Christianity, however, made the devil less powerful than G-d, but still made him a rebel against G-d. Judaism sees it differently, and we have always seen it differently. Satan is not a rebellious angel. G-d created both good and evil. The Bible says so, in Isaiah 45:7. What is evil? Not fulfilling G-d's will. G-d created the universe because G-d wanted to do good. So there had to be people to receive that good. But G-d does not want to just give away good as a present. G-d wants people to appreciate it. Something you get for free you do not appreciate. And in fact, if you got something amazingly good for free, and you were allowed to enjoy it for all eternity, you would be embarrassed by it. You didn't work for it, you don't deserve it. So G-d decided that people would have to work for it, and receive the ultimate goodness as a reward for work. What is that work? Well, G-d created the Evil Inclination, the angel called Satan, whose job it is to tempt us to do evil. If we ignore the Evil Inclination, then we get closer to G-d, and become more holy. By doing so, we merit the reward of the ultimate goodness. G-d also gave us Commandments, and the Tempting Angel tempts us to find reasons not to keep those Commandments. By ignoring the temptations, and fulfilling G-d's Commandments, we become more spiritual, and our souls gain more power over ourselves. So we see our lives in this world as an opportunity. We have been granted the glorious opportunity to attain holiness and ultimate goodness. So, in the future there will come a time when the universe as we know it will come to an end, and the World To Come will begin. Then we will begin to get our eternal reward -the ultimate goodness! This world is here merely for us to do good things in, and the Next World is for the reward. And in that world we will continue to grow in holiness.

So it is not that there is an ultimate struggle of good versus evil. Within each of us there are many struggles. We want to do the right thing, but we desire to do the wrong thing. We have the free choice to choose. We can do either the right thing or the wrong thing. It is completely up to us. When we let our Good Inclination prevail about one thing, we become stronger in that thing. The more we continue to let the good prevail, the more it becomes easier to do the right thing in that area. Say, for example, we have a desire to tell harmful gossip about someone. If we hold ourselves back from doing it, and continue to hold ourselves back whenever we feel the temptation, it becomes easier and easier to stop gossiping. Conversely, the more we gossip, the harder it is to stop. And that's the way it is with every individual characteristic trait. But when we perfect one characteristic trait, it does not always help with another. For example, if we work on becoming humble, sometimes that will help us in other areas. A humble person will be less likely to get angry at someone else. A humble person might not tell gossip either. But a humble person might still lie, or sleep late when he or she knows that there is a chore or other responsibility to deal with. Someone who has learned never to gossip might still steal, for example. So each trait usually has to be worked on by itself, but something like humility helps with most of the others. And possibly the greatest temptation is in the area of having faith in G-d. Developing our faith helps us in many areas. So, there is no ultimate struggle of good versus evil. There is only the struggle within each of us. The Evil Inclination, also known as Satan, is doing what G-d has commanded him to do. He is giving us temptations, because by fighting against our wrong desires we are working to gain the ultimate goodness, and that is what G-d wants us to do.

PLEASE visit these useful websites for more information:

www.MessiahTruth.com : The Real Jewish Messiah www.jewsforjudaism.org Response to Missionaries www.outreachjudaism.org An international organization that responds directly to the issues raised by missionaries and cults. http://jdstone.org/cr/index.html Reveals the error, distortions and falsehood of... http://www.kosherjudaism.com/counter.htm Archive of Articles; trinity, messiah, Jesus, Christianity... http://www.angelfire.com/my/tgoldman0/prophet.htm An Explanation of Christians Prophecies www.TorahAtlanta.com Jewish Articles and Response to Christian claims on G-d and the Messiah.

"Lucifer" a problem for Christianity & Mormonism Al Case 1

The word "Lucifer" in Isaiah 14:12 presents a minor problem to mainstream Christianity. It becomes a much larger problem to Bible literalists, and becomes a huge obstacle for the claims of Mormonism. John J. Robinson in A Pilgrim's Path, pp. 47-48 explains: "Lucifer makes his appearance in the fourteenth chapter of the Old Testament book of Isaiah, at the twelfth verse, and nowhere else: "How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!" The first problem is that Lucifer is a Latin name. So how did it find its way into a Hebrew manuscript, written before there was a Roman language? To find the answer, I consulted a scholar at the library of the Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati. What Hebrew name, I asked, was Satan given in this chapter of Isaiah, which describes the angel who fell to become the ruler of hell? The answer was a surprise. In the original Hebrew text, the fourteenth chapter of Isaiah is not about a fallen angel, but about a fallen Babylonian king, who during his lifetime had persecuted the children of Israel. It contains no mention of Satan, either by name or reference. The Hebrew scholar could only speculate that some early Christian scribes, writing in the Latin tongue used by the Church, had decided for themselves that they wanted the story to be about a fallen angel, a creature not even mentioned in the original Hebrew text, and to whom they gave the name "Lucifer."

Why Lucifer? In Roman astronomy, Lucifer was the name given to the morning star (the star we now know by another Roman name, Venus). The morning star appears in the heavens just before dawn, heralding the rising sun. The name derives from the Latin term lucem ferre, bringer, or bearer, of light." In the Hebrew text the expression used to describe the Babylonian king before his death is Helal, son of Shahar, which can best be translated as "Day star, son of the Dawn." The name evokes the golden glitter of a proud king's dress and court (much as his personal splendor earned for King Louis XIV of France the appellation, "The Sun King"). The scholars authorized by ... King James I to translate the Bible into current English did not use the original Hebrew texts, but used versions translated ... largely by St. Jerome in the fourth century. Jerome had mistranslated the Hebraic metaphor, "Day star, son of the Dawn," as "Lucifer," and over the centuries a metamorphosis took place. Lucifer the morning star became a disobedient angel, cast out of heaven to rule eternally in hell. Theologians, writers, and poets interwove the myth with the doctrine of the Fall, and in Christian tradition Lucifer is now the same as Satan, the Devil, and --- ironically --- the Prince of Darkness.

So "Lucifer" is nothing more than an ancient Latin name for the morning star, the bringer of light. That can be confusing for Christians who identify Christ himself as the morning star, a term used as a central theme in many Christian sermons. Jesus refers to himself as the morning star in Revelation 22:16: "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star."

And so there are those who do not read beyond the King James Version of the

Bible, who say 'Lucifer is Satan: so says the Word of God'...." Henry Neufeld (a Christian who comments on Biblical sticky issues) went on to say, "this passage is often related to Satan, and a similar thought is expressed in Luke 10:18 by Jesus, that was not its first meaning. Its primary meaning is given in Isaiah 14:4 which says that when Israel is restored they will "take up this taunt against the king of Babylon . . ." Verse 12 is a part of this taunt song. This passage refers first to the fall of that earthly king... How does the confusion in translating this verse arise? The Hebrew of this passage reads: "heleyl, ben shachar" which can be literally translated "shining one, son of dawn." This phrase means, again literally, the planet Venus when it appears as a morning star. In the Septuagint, a 3rd century BC translation of the Hebrew scriptures into Greek, it is translated as "heosphoros" which also means Venus as a morning star. How did the translation "Lucifer" arise? This word comes from Jerome's Latin Vulgate. Was Jerome in error? Not at all. In Latin at the time, "Lucifer" actually meant Venus as a morning star. Isaiah is using this metaphor for a bright light, though not the greatest light to illustrate the apparent power of the Babylonian king which then faded." Therefore, Lucifer wasn't equated with Satan until after Jerome. Jerome wasn't in error. Later Christians (and Mormons) were in equating "Lucifer" with "Satan". So why is this a problem to Christians? Christians now generally believe that Satan (or the Devil or Lucifer who they equate with Satan) is a being who has always existed. Therefore, they also think that the 'prophets' of the Old Testament believed in this creature. The Isaiah scripture is used as proof (and has been used as such for hundreds of years now). As Elaine Pagels explains though, the concept of Satan has evolved over the years ...

The irony for those who believe that "Lucifer" refers to Satan is that the same title ('morning star' or 'light-bearer') is used to refer to Jesus, in 2 Peter 1:19, where the Greek text has exactly the same term: 'phos-phoros' 'lightbearer.' This is also the term used for Jesus in Revelation 22:16.

So why is Lucifer a far bigger problem to Mormons? Mormons claim that an ancient record (the Book of Mormon) was written beginning in about 600 BC, and the author in 600 BC supposedly copied Isaiah in Isaiah's original words. When Joseph Smith pretended to translate the supposed 'ancient record', he included the Lucifer verse in the Book of Mormon. Obviously he wasn't copying what Isaiah actually wrote. He was copying the King James Version of the Bible. Another book of Mormon (LDS) scripture, the Doctrine & Covenants, furthers this problem in 76:26 when it affirms the false Christian doctrine that "Lucifer" means Satan. This incorrect doctrine also spread into a third set of Mormon scriptures, the Pearl of Great Price, which describes a war in heaven based, in part, on Joseph Smith's incorrect interpretation of the word "Lucifer" which only appears in Isaiah.

On a lighter note, Arthur Clarke, in his fictional book 2061 correctly uses the word "Lucifer". He uses it as a name for a new sun in the solar system which is correct since the new sun is a second 'morning star' of 'original' 'light-bearing' substance--not some evil being of religious mythology. David Grinspoon comments on the historical aspects of the word as follows: "The origin of the Judeo-Christian Devil as an angel fallen from heaven into the depths of hell is mirrored in the descent of Venus from shining morning star to the darkness below. This underworld demon, still feared today by people in many

parts of the world, is also called Lucifer, which was originally a Latin name for Venus as a morning star." (Venus Revealed p. 17) Actually, Grinspoon should just refer to the "Christian Devil" since the Jews never believed in such a creature and still don't to this day.

Footnote: 1. Al Case is an Assistant Professor of Business at Southern Oregon University. He has a BS in Accounting, minor in Japanese, and a MAcc with emphasis in tax from Brigham Young University. http://www.lds-mormon.com/lucifer.shtml

2001-2005 Christianity Revealed http://jdstone.org/cr/

PLEASE visit these useful websites for more information:

www.MessiahTruth.com : The Real Jewish Messiah www.jewsforjudaism.org Response to Missionaries www.outreachjudaism.org An international organization that responds directly to the issues raised by missionaries and cults. http://jdstone.org/cr/index.html Reveals the error, distortions and falsehood of ... http://www.kosherjudaism.com/counter.htm Archive of Articles; trinity, messiah, Jesus, Christianity ... http://www.angelfire.com/my/tgoldman0/prophet.htm An Explanation of Christians Prophecies www.TorahAtlanta.com Jewish Articles and Response to Christian claims on G-d and the Messiah.

The Jewish Concept of Messiah and the Jewish Response to Christian Claims
1) The word Messiah is an English rendering of the Hebrew word Mashiach, whose translation is Anointed. It usually refers to a person initiated into G-ds service by being anointed with oil. (Having oil poured on his head. Cf. Exodus 29:7, I Kings 1:39, II Kings 9:3). 2) There are many Messiahs in the Bible. Since every King and High Priest was anointed with oil, each may be referred to as an anointed one (a Mashiach or a Messiah). For example: G-d forbid that I [David] should stretch out my hand against the L-rds Messiah [Saul]... I Samuel 26:11. Cf. II Samuel 23:1, Isaiah 45:1, Psalms 20:6. 3) The Hebrew word HaMashiach (lit. the Messiah) describing a future anointed person to come does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Since the Bible makes no explicit reference to the Messiah, it is unlikely that it could be considered the most important concept in the Bible. Indeed, in Jewish thought, the Messianic idea is not the most crucial. However, in Christian thought, the Messiah is paramount- a difficulty in light of its conspicuous absence from scripture. 4) Where does the Jewish concept of Messiah come from? One of the central themes of Biblical prophesy is the promise of a future age of perfection characterized by universal peace and recognition of G-d. Isaiah 2:1-4; Zephaniah 3:9; Hosea 2:2022; Amos 9:13-15; Isaiah 32:15-18, 60:1518; Micah 4:1-4; Zechariah 8:23, 14:9; Jeremiah 31:33-34. 5) Many of these prophetic passages speak of a descendant of King David who will rule Israel during the age of perfection. Isaiah 11:1-9; Jeremiah 23:5-6, 30:7-10, 33:14-16; Ezekiel 34:11-31, 37:21-28; Hosea 3:4-5. 6) Since every King is a Messiah, by convention, we refer to this future anointed one as The Messiah. The above is the only description in the Bible of a Davidic descendant who is to come in the future. We will recognize the Messiah by seeing who the King of Israel is at the time of complete universal perfection. 7) The Bible never speaks about believing in the Messiah. Because his reign will be an historically verifiable reality, selfevident to any person, it wont require belief or faith. 8) Because no person has ever fulfilled the picture painted in the Bible of this future

King, Jewish people still await the coming of the Messiah. All past Messianic claimants, including Jesus of Nazareth, Bar Cochba and Shabbtai Tzvi have been rejected. 9) The claim that Jesus will fulfill the Messianic prophesies when he returns does not give him any credibility for his first coming. The Bible never speaks about the Messiah returning after an initial appearance. The second coming theory is a desperate attempt to explain away Jesus failure. The Biblical passages which Christians are forced to regard as second coming (#5 above) dont speak of someone returning, they have a first coming perspective. 10) According to Biblical tradition, Elijah the prophet will reappear before the coming of the Messiah (Malachi 4:5-6). In the Greek Testament, Jesus claims that John the Baptist was Elijah (Matthew 11:13-14, 17:10-13). However, when John the Baptist was asked if he was Elijah, he denied it (John 1:21). The Gospel of Luke 1:17 tries to get around this problem by claiming that John the Baptist came in the spirit of Elijah. However: a] Malachi predicted that Elijah himself would return, and not just someone coming in his spirit. b] When asked about his identity, John the Baptist didnt claim to have come in the spirit of Elijah - he claimed no association with Elijah at all.

c] The prophesy about the return of Elijah says that he would restore the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers. There is no evidence that John the Baptist accomplished this. 11) According to the Jewish Bible, the Messiah must be a descendent of King David. (Jeremiah 23:5, 33:17; Ezekiel 34:23-24) Although the Greek Testament traces the genealogy of Joseph (husband of Mary) back to David, it then claims that Jesus resulted from a virgin birth, and, that Joseph was not his father. (Mat. 1:18-23) In response, it is claimed that Joseph adopted Jesus, and passed on his genealogy via adoption. There are two problems with this claim: a) there is no Biblical basis for the idea of a father passing on his tribal line by adoption. A priest who adopts a son from another tribe cannot make him a priest by adoption; b) Joseph could never pass on by adoption that which he doesnt have. Because Joseph descended from Jeconiah (Mat. 1:11) he fell under the curse of that king that none of his descendants could ever sit as king upon the throne of David. (Jeremiah 22:30; 36:30). To answer this difficult problem, apologists claim that Jesus traces himself back to King David through his mother Mary, who allegedly descends from David, as shown in the third chapter of Luke. There are four

basic problems with this claim: a] There is no evidence that Mary descends from David. The third chapter of Luke traces Josephs genealogy, not Marys. b] Even if Mary can trace herself back to David, that doesnt help Jesus, since tribal affiliation goes only through the father, not mother. Cf. Num. 1:18; Ezra 2:59. c] Even if family line could go through the mother, Mary was not from a legitimate Messianic family. According to the Bible, the Messiah must be a descendent of David through his son Solomon (II Sam. 7:14; I Chron. 17:11-14, 22:9-10, 28:4-6) The third chapter of Luke is useless because it goes through Davids son Nathan, not Solomon. (Luke 3:31) d] Luke 3:27 lists Shealtiel and Zerubbabel in his genealogy. These two also appear in Matthew 1:12 as descendants of the cursed Jeconiah. If Mary descends from them, it would also disqualify her from being a Messianic progenitor. If you have questions about what Judaism has said about the promised Messiah for the last three millenia or want to know how to answer the Christian claims, please check out our website: www.jewsforjudaism.org, drop us a line or give us a call. The concept of Messiah is Jewish. To find out about it go to the source.

The Jewish Messiah

PO Box 15059 Baltimore, MD 21282 Phone: 410-602-0276 Fax: 410-602-0578 National Hotline: 800-477-6631 email: baltimore@jewsforjudaism.org

Visit us at


4601 Community Drive West Palm Beach, FL 33417 561-478-0700 x171


The Real Messiah:

Personal References and Job Description
Regarding who the Messiah will be there are two main questions. First, What kind of person will the Moshiach be? Second, what will his job be? To answer these questions, we do as we always do; that is, we find the words of the Hebrew prophets that describe the Moshiach and the Messianic era. What the words of the prophets reveal is a checklist of personal and professional qualifications for the job. In other words, we have been given the tools to determine whether an individual who purports to be the Messiah fulfills the prophetic requirements. Even so, it is no easy task. Throughout history, some of our greatest sages have been mistaken about the validity of a Messianic claim. Rabbi Akiva, the great Talmudic sage and arguably the most respected leader of his day, pronounced that a man called Bar Kochba was indeed the awaited Messiah. However, Bar Kochba died shortly thereafter and consequently everyone realized that he was not the Messiah. Later in history (late 1600s) a man named Shabbatai Tzvi generated an enormous following of Jews believing him to be the long-awaited redeemer. Again, some of the generations most prominent leaders proclaimed him Moshiach. Ultimately he, too, died, and therefore could not fulfill the role of Messiah. In both of these cases, some great sages mistakenly thought that these men fulfilled the biblical prophecies regarding the Messiah. This shows both the willingness to accept and embrace the Messiah as well as the difficulty of the task of determining the voracity of a messianic claim. The best that we can do is to look at the sources provided and try to draw a conclusion. The scriptures make very clear what is minimally necessary for someone to be considered the Messiah. Personal status The Messiah will be a direct descendant of King David. Anyone whose lineage does not trace back to King David cannot serve as Messiah. [1] The Messiah will be a Prophet, Sage, and Warrior. [2] The Messiah will be observant of Jewish law. [3] The Messiah will be an honest and kind judge. [4] Job Description The Messiah will bring the Jewish people back to their land, Israel. [5] He will rebuild Jerusalem and the Temple will be restored. [6] www.torahatlanta.com

www.torahatlanta.com He will teach the Jews to observe the Torah and inspire the Jewish people with faith in G-d. [7] He will likewise teach the gentiles about G-d, thereby bringing to mankind a universal knowledge of G-d. [7] The Messiah will usher in an era of world peace. [8] There will be complete harmony in nature. It will be the end of the predator-prey relationship in the animal kingdom, and there will be no aggression from animals towards humans. [9]

Do they Match? Many Jews find it hard to give a solid answer when theyre asked why Jews believe that Jesus was not the Messiah. When we look at the above sources, however, it should be clear that Jesus simply did not fit the personal profile of the Moshiach. Furthermore, he did not do what the prophets tell us the Messiah must do. Lets look carefully at the life and times of Jesus and see if he fulfilled all of the above prophecies. Was Jesus from King David, of the tribe of Judah? Christians agree with us that tribal lineage is traced through the father. According to universal Christian teachings, Jesus was not from David. Having been fathered by G-d and not by a human father, Jesus had no paternal lineage at all! Christians confronted with this fact attempt to resolve it in one of three ways. First, they suggest that the lineage can be traced through Joseph even though he was only Jesus adoptive father, so to speak. This has no basis in the Hebrew Bible or Jewish law. Tribal lineage is never changed through adoption. Second, the missionaries will sometimes claim that the lineage can be traced through Mary. Again, there is never a case in the Hebrew bible or in Jewish law where tribal identification goes through the mother. (Whether a person is born Jewish or gentile is determined by the status of the mother only. However, if the mother is Jewish, and therefore the child is Jewish, then the tribal designation is only determined by the Jewish biological father, when there is one). The third explanation is really a universal fallback position, one that most Jews find unsatisfying. That is, when confronted with a difficulty in the text of the New Testament or in the rationale of a particular line of thought, oftentimes Christians will answer, its a mystery, brother, you just have to have faith. Jews often feel that this isnt an answer to their question, but rather a way of avoiding a difficult truth. In any case, the fact that Jesus was not from King David alone is enough to disqualify him from being the Moshiach. Its similar to asking if Henry Kissinger could have run for President. He might have met other criteria for the job, but since he was born overseas, and the Constitution requires that the President must be born in the United States, then all his other qualifications are meaningless. He failed to meet the first requirement, and no more discussion is necessary.



So, too, with any candidate for Messiah, including Jesus. Since Jesus wasnt from King David, as the Prophet states that Moshiach must be, then there really isnt anything more to talk about. Nevertheless, for the sake of gaining a more complete understanding of the issue, well go over the criteria for Moshiach and see if indeed any of them were accomplished by Jesus. Job Description Ingathering of the Exile Jesus did not bring the Jews back to Israel from exile. He simply wasnt able to because during his lifetime, the Jews were still living in their land! The exile, where the prophets predicted that we would be scattered to the four corners of the earth, would only take place a century after Jesus death. Rebuilding the Temple Likewise rebuilding Jerusalem and the Temple. Jesus lived and died while the Temple was still standing. He had no opportunity to fulfill that prophecy. Inspire Jews Towards Observance, Gentiles Towards Spirituality We saw that the prophets taught that the Messiah will inspire Jews to be observant of Jewish law and enthusiastic about their awareness of G-d. Also, gentiles will be knowledgeable about G-d and will be loyal to Him and to the Jewish nation. There will be a universal acknowledgment of and loyalty to G-d. Obviously this is yet to occur. Peace, Love and Understanding Likewise with the prophesies regarding world peace and harmony in nature. Not only have nations not disarmed, humanity is as warlike and violent as ever. (It is painfully ironic that we have seen some of the worlds most heinous acts of murder and persecution done in the name of Jesus, the one who was to have brought peace and harmony). It is clear that, item by item, Jesus did not do what the Messiah will have to do. He was not the Messiah. How do the Christians answer this? There is a two-part answer. Their argument is: a) that indeed he did not do what the Messiah will do, but hell accomplish those things with the Second Coming and b) that Jesus, as the son of G-d, really came to forgive humanity for their sins and to do away with observance of the commandments. Firstly, the prophets did not teach that the Messiah would appear, not do anything that he was supposed to do, die, and reappear thousands of years later to do the job. It simply has no source in the Hebrew Bible. The doctrine of the Second Coming was invented in order to answer the obvious question of why Jesus didnt do the Messiahs job. Secondly, there is no indication in any Jewish source that it is the job of the Messiah to forgive us for our sins. That is between every individual and G-d (see related article Necessary and Sufficient). www.torahatlanta.com

www.torahatlanta.com In Conclusion When the Messiah indeed appears, there will be no need for an article like this one. While it may take a little time months, perhaps a year or two to confirm that he is, in fact, the Messiah, once he is established as such there will be no doubt in anyones mind as to his legitimacy. He will be internationally recognized as the worlds leader. The state of world peace and harmony in nature will make it more than obvious that the time and the person - has arrived.

[1] I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them; he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the L-rd, will be their G-d, and my servant David shall be prince among them; I, the L-rd, have spoken. (Ezekiel 34:23-24) Once and for all I have sworn by my holiness; I will not lie to David. His line shall continue forever, and his throne endure before me like the sun. (Psalm 89:35-36) And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of (Davids father) Yishay, and a branch will grow out of his roots (Isaiah 11:1) [2] And the spirit of the L-rd will rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might (Isaiah 11:2) [3] A shoot shall come out of the stump of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. The spirit of the L-rd shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the L-rd. His delight shall be in the fear of the L-rd. (Isaiah 11:1-3) My servant David shall be king over them; and they shall all have one shepherd. They will follow my ordinances and be careful to observe my statutesand my servant David shall be their prince forever. (Ezekiel 37:24-25) [4] and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither decide after the hearing of his ears; but with righteousness shall he judge the poor." Isaiah 11:3) [5] And it shall come to pass in that day, that the L-rd shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, that shall be left (Isaiah 11:11-14) [6] And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the L-rds house shall be established on the top of the mountains, and will be exalted above the hills; and all the nations will flow unto it. And many people will go and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the L-rd, to the house of the G-d of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths; for out of Zion will go forth Torah, and the word of the L-rd from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:2-3). [7] This will be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, say the L-rd; I will put my Torah in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their G-d, and they shall be my people, and they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the L-rd; for they shall all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the Lrd; for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. (Jeremiah 31:32-33)


www.torahatlanta.com [8] and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. (Isaiah 2:4)

[9] The wolf shall live with the lamb, and the leopard will lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child will lead themand the lion will eat straw like the ox. And the nursing child will play on the hole of the cobra, and the weaned child will put his hand on the vipers nest. They will not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the L-rd, as the waters cover the sea. (Isaiah 11:6-9)

Source: http://www.torahatlanta.com/

PLEASE visit these useful websites for more information:

www.MessiahTruth.com : The Real Jewish Messiah www.jewsforjudaism.com Response to Missionaries www.outreachjudaism.org An international organization that responds directly to the issues raised by missionaries and cults. http://jdstone.org/cr/index.html Reveals the error, distortions and falsehood of ... http://www.kosherjudaism.com/counter.htm Archive of Articles; trinity, messiah, Jesus, Christianity ... http://www.angelfire.com/my/tgoldman0/prophet.htm An Explanation of Christians Prophecies


Did Somebody Find the Trinity in the First Chapter of the Bible? To Whom Was God Speaking to When He Said, Let Us Make Man in Our Image?
Dear Rabbi Singer, A Messianic Jew is working overtime to try to convince me that I need JC. She recently showed me Genesis 1:26, Let US make man in OUR image, stating that JC was part of creation with G-d, plural Us and Our being the proof. Can you explain the plural in this verse to me? I want to have an intelligent answer. I am trying very hard to learn more of my Jewish religion, as I was raised in a non-religious home. The only Bible I own is the one she gave me and it is a King James.

No area of Jewish literature could be more inhospitable to the Christian doctrine of the triune godhead than the Torah and the writings of its prophetic messengers. It is on the strength of these sacred texts that the Jew has preserved the concept of one, single, unique Creator God Who alone is worthy of worship. Understandably, missionaries undertake a formidable task when they seek to prove the doctrine of the Trinity from the Jewish scriptures. No prophet went silent on the uncompromising radical monotheism demanded by the God of Israel. The Jewish people, therefore, to whom these sublime declarations about the nature of the Almighty were given, knew nothing about a trinity of persons in the godhead. Because the prophets relayed their divine message on the nature of God with such timeless clarity, few texts in Tanach could hold any promise for the church to raise up as a support for their teachings on the Trinity. Understandably, though, the defenders of Christendom flaunted the very few verses that they managed to somehow skew into a supposed support for this alien doctrine. One of the most popular verses used by missionaries as a proof text for the Trinity is Genesis 1:26. This verse appears in missionary literature quite often in spite of the fact that this argument has been answered countless times throughout the centuries. Lets examine Genesis 1:26. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and they shall rule over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the sky, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.

With limited knowledge of the Jewish scriptures, missionaries advance the above verse in as evidence that there was a plurality in the godhead which was responsible for creation. What other explanation could adequately account for the Bibles use of the plural pronouns such as us and our in this verse?

This argument, however, is grievously flawed. In fact, a great number of Trinitarian Christian scholars have long abandoned the notion that Genesis 1:26 implies a plurality of persons in the godhead. Rather, Christian scholars overwhelmingly agree that the plural pronoun in this verse is a reference to Gods ministering angels who were created previously, and the Almighty spoke majestically in the plural, consulting His heavenly court. Lets read the comments of a number of preeminent Trinitarian Bible scholars on this subject. For example, the evangelical Christian author Gordon J. Wenham, who is no foe of the Trinity and authored a widely respected two-volume commentary on the Book of Genesis, writes on this verse, Christians have traditionally seen [Genesis 1:26] as adumbrating [foreshadowing] the Trinity. It is now universally admitted that this was not what the plural meant to the original author.1

If you had attended any one of my lectures you would know that the New International Version is hardly a Bible that can be construed as being friendly to Judaism. Yet, the NIV Study Bible also writes in its commentary on Genesis 1:26, Us . . . Our . . . Our. God speaks as the Creator-king, announcing His crowning work to the members of His heavenly court. (see 3:22; 11:7; Isaiah 6:8; I Kings 22:19-23; Job 15:8; Jeremiah 23:18)2 Charles Caldwell Ryrie, a highly regarded dispensationalist professor of Biblical Studies at the Philadelphia College of Bible and author of the widely read Bible commentary, The Ryrie Study Bible, writes in his short and to-the-point annotation on Genesis 1:26, Us . . . Our. Plurals of majesty.3

The Liberty Annotated Study Bible, a Bible commentary published by the Reverend Jerry Falwells Liberty University, similarly remarks on this verse, The plural pronoun Us is most likely a majestic plural from the standpoint of Hebrew grammar and syntax.4

The 10-volume commentary by Keil and Delitzsch is considered by many to be the most influential exposition on the Old Testament in evangelical circles. Yet in its commentary on Genesis 1:26, we find,

The plural We was regarded by the fathers and earlier theologians almost unanimously as indicative of the Trinity; modern commentators, on the contrary, regard it either as pluralis majestatis . . . No other explanation is left, therefore, than to regard it as pluralis majestatis . . . .5 The question that immediately comes to mind is: What would compel these evangelical scholars -- all of whom are Trinitarian -- to determinedly conclude that Genesis 1:26 does not suggest the Trinity, but rather a majestic address to the angelic hosts of heaven? Why would the comments of the above conservative Christian writers so perfectly harmonize with the Jewish teaching on this verse? The answer to this question is simple. If you search the Bible you will find that when the Almighty speaks of us or our, He is addressing His ministering angels. In fact, only two chapters later, God continues to use the pronoun us as He speaks with His angels. At the end of the third chapter of Genesis the Almighty relates to His angels that Adam and his wife have eaten from the Tree of Knowledge and must therefore be prevented from eating from the Tree of Life as well; for if man would gain access to the Tree of Life he will become like one of us. The Creator then instructs his angels known as Cherubim to stand at the gate of the Garden of Eden waving a flaming sword so that mankind is prevented from entering the Garden and eating from the Tree of Life. Lets examine Genesis 3:22-24. Then the Lord God said, Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever -- therefore the Lord God sent him out of the Garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken. So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the Garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life. This use of the majestic plural in Genesis 3:22-24 is what is intended by the NIV Study Bibles annotation on Genesis 1:26 (above). At the end of its comment on this verse, the NIV Study Bible provides a number of Bible sources from the Jewish scriptures to support its position that God speaks as the Creator-king, announcing His crowning work to the members of His heavenly court. The verses cited are: Genesis 3:22, 11:7, Isaiah 6:8, I Kings 22:19-23, Job 15:8, and Jeremiah 23:18. These verses convey to the attentive Bible reader that the heavenly abode of the Creator is filled with the ministering angels who attend the Almighty and to whom He repeatedly refers when using the plural pronoun Us.6 I will close this letter with one final note. Outsiders often wonder what binding force keeps the Jewish people united in faith. This is not so odd a question when we consider the inner conflict that has followed our people throughout our extraordinary history. Bear in mind that regardless of the turbulent quarrels that fester among us, the oneness of God remains the binding thread which unites the Jewish people in history and witness. The teachings of the Torah were designed to set forever in the national conscience of the

Jewish people the idea that God is one alone and therefore the only object of our devotion and worship. Sincerely yours, Rabbi Tovia Singer


Gordon J. Wenham, Word Biblical Commentary on Genesis, Word Books, 1987, p. 27. NIV Study Bible, Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1985, p. 7.

Charles Caldwell Ryrie, The Ryrie Study Bible (Dallas Theological Seminary), Chicago: Moody Press, 1978, p. 9.

Jerry Falwell (Executive Editor), Liberty Annotated Study Bible, Lynchburg: Liberty University, 1988, p. 8. Keil & Delitzsch, Commentary on the Old Testament, Peabody: Hendric., 1989, Vol. I, p. 62.
6 5

A similar verse describing God as He converses with His ministering angels is found in the beginning of the sixth chapter of Isaiah, which reads, In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the Temple. Above it stood seraphim; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew . . . Also, I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us? Then I said, Here am I! Send me. (Isaiah 6:1, 8)


Source: www.Jewsforjudaism.com & www.outreachjudaism.org

Did Somebody Find the Trinity in the Name of God?

Question: Dear Rabbi Singer, First, let me say that what you are doing is a great service to Jews and the religious community at large. You are setting the record straight -- one that has needed correction for almost 2000 years! Thank you. Yesterday, a Christian business associate made a point that in the very first verse of Genesis Gd is referred to as Elohim which is plural. She also said that it is a plural form of three (something I have never heard before). That, she concludes, is proof of the Trinity! Why is Gds name plural in this verse? Answer: The question with which you were confronted by your business associate is one of the more well-known arguments used by missionaries to defend their most untenable creed, the doctrine of the Trinity. It is difficult to imagine a notion more hostile to the pure monotheism preached in the Jewish scriptures than the Christian teaching that there is a plurality within the divine nature of God. Yet, with limited knowledge of the Jewish Bible and the language in which it was written, many Trinitarians brazenly refer to the name of God as it appears in the first verse in the Bible to advance their contention that there are three persons sharing in the godhead. More specifically, missionaries point to the plural form of the Hebrew word Elohim,1 which is one of the names of God frequently used in the Torah. They insist that in scripture the use of the Hebrew letters yod and mem (pronounced im), at the end of the word Elohim as a plural suffix, provides ample evidence from Tanach that there is a plurality within the nature of God. Your business associate went out on an even more fragile limb when she proclaimed that this plural syntax is somehow indicative of the plural form of three. I will begin by saying that you can rest assured that the Hebrew tongue is a foreign language to your business associate, and both of her contentions are erroneous. While her first assertion can be easily explained away by her lack of familiarity with the biblical language, her second point cannot. Her latter comment that the plural suffix in Elohim is indicative of a plural form of three is particularly preposterous, and underscores how frustrated Trinitarians can become in their rash effort to somehow shore up this alien church doctrine. While I too have never heard any missionary make the astounding claim that plurals somehow mean a plural form of three, I could sense from where this irresponsible contrivance is coming. If you examine the few verses evangelicals use from the Jewish scriptures as they seek to buttress the doctrine of the Trinity, you will notice that none of them, even in Christian terms, speaks of three persons. In essence, her flawed declaration was born out of a desperate desire to weave the Trinity out of whole Jewish cloth. This is an impossible task. Bear in mind, there is no mystery as to the origins of the Trinity, nor is there any secret as to whose loins gave birth to this aberrant creed. The doctrine of the Trinity emerged out of the crucible of the Catholic Church long after the Christian century. It is, therefore, no wonder that this pagan doctrine was unknown to authors of the New Testament. Church history reveals that it was not until three hundred years after the birth of Christianity that the doctrine of the Bianity (325 C.E.) and Trinity (381 C.E.) received formal approval in the Christian community. These well-documented events occurred under circumstances confused with political agitation and

radical dissention. In essence, the Jewish people never believed in a Trinity, and the church adopted it under enormous political pressure from the most pagan segments of the Catholic Church. Understandably, missionaries undertake a formidable task when they seek to prove this fourth century doctrine from a radically monotheistic Torah which is timeless. Lets examine your business associates claim. There is an enormous difficulty with the interpretation that the name Elohim signifies a sort of plurality in the godhead; for if Elohim implies a plurality of persons, how can missionaries explain that the identical word Elohim in Tanach refers to Moses as well? Regarding Moses, in Exodus 7:1, the Torah says, And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god (Elohim) to Pharaoh, and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet. (KJV) Are missionaries going to claim that there was a plurality of persons in Moses? Is your associate going to insist that Moses was part of a Trinity? The notion that Moses, who is called Elohim in the Torah, possessed more than one person is preposterous. Moreover, if the name of God is to signify a plurality in the godhead, why wasnt the name Je-hova, which is by far the most frequently used name for God in the Jewish scriptures, also written in the plural? Clearly, this sort of Trinitarian argument is baseless. The word Elohim possesses a plural intensive syntax and is singular in meaning. This is selfevident from the fact that the verb created (bara) in Genesis 1:1 is in the singular. This linguistic pattern is well known and widely used throughout the Jewish scriptures. For example, I am certain that many of our website readers are familiar with the Hebrew word chayim, meaning life. Notice that this word contains the identical plural suffix im, as in Elohim, yet it repeatedly means life, in the singular, throughout the Bible. Examples are: And Rebekah said to Isaac, I am weary of my life because of the daughters of Heth; if Jacob takes a wife of the daughters of Heth, like these who are the daughters of the land, what good will my life (chayim) be to me? (Genesis 27:46) You have granted me life (chayim) and favor, and Your care has preserved my spirit. (Job 10:12) The fact that the name of God, Elohim, does not in any way imply a plurality in the godhead is well known and widely recognized even among Trinitarian Christians. For example, in the New International Version Study Bible (NIV), which is hardly a translation or annotation which could be construed as friendly to the Jewish faith, the Christian author writes in his commentary on Genesis 1:1, God created. The Hebrew noun Elohim is plural but the verb is singular, a normal usage in the OT when reference is to the one true God. This use of the plural expresses intensification rather than number and has been called the plural of majesty, or of potentiality. (New International Version Study Bible, Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1985, p. 6.) Finally, it is important that you understand the crucial message the name Elohim conveys to the Children of Israel. To clarify, two questions must be answered. 1) Why does the Torah employ this intensive plural name for the Almighty throughout the Torah? 2) Why is this name predominant throughout the creation narrative in the beginning of Genesis?

There is a fundamental principal regarding the many names of the Almighty as they appear in the Torah -- they are exalted descriptions of the God of Israel. The name Elohim, which is no exception to this rule, comes from the Hebrew root el, which means might or power. This common root appears in a variety of words throughout the Jewish scriptures. For example, we find this word used in the famous opening words to Psalm 29, havu ladonai bnai eylim. This chapter is well known to the Jewish people because the congregation joyously sings this Psalm in the synagogue every Sabbath morning as the Torah is being placed back into the ark. What do these noble words mean? Ascribe to the LORD, O sons of the mighty. (New American Standard Bible) We can now have deeper understanding of the message behind the sacred name Elohim. The pagan world ascribed a god for each of the powers in the world which they observed and on whom they depended. They saw a powerful and perplexing energy emanating from the sun, and they worshiped the sun god. They craved an abundant harvest and boundless fertility, and they appointed gods for them as well. The ancients were awestruck by the forces which sustained them, and venerated each of them with mysterious and sometimes gruesome rites. The Torah of Israel had a very different and uplifting message for mankind. All the forces and energies in the universe, all the might and power that man could behold, emanated from the One Creator of the universe. This grand message was contained in the name of God, Elohim. All the forces of the world emerged from the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. This God, Creator of all matter, is alone worthy of worship. It is for this reason that the name of God, Elohim, appears more frequently than any other name of God throughout the first two chapters of Genesis. In these two chapters the Almighty is creating all the powers and forces which fill the universe. There is no sun god to be venerated. In fact, the God Who created the sun on the fourth day created fish on the fifth. You can now begin to understand why the nation of Israel, to whom God revealed Himself at the foot of Mount Sinai, knew nothing about a plurality of persons in the godhead. No fact could be more firmly established once all of our literature -- both canonical and rabbinical -- is taken as a guide. This matter is indisputable. Best wishes for a happy and healthy New Year. Sincerely yours, Rabbi Tovia Singer


Due to the sanctity of the name of God which appears on this page, please do not print out this article and discard it.


Source: www.Jewsforjudaism.com & www.outreachjudaism.org

WHO IS THE PRINCE OF PEACE? When interpreting the Bible, context is critical. If someone says "The Indians had a great victory" it makes a great difference if he is referring to the Cleveland Indians, the defeat of General Custer, or the removal of British imperialism in India. Missionaries identify the Prince of Peace with Jesus by ignoring context. Isaiah 9:5 "For unto us a child was born, to us a son was given: and the government is on his shoulder: and his name was called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty G-d, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." (alternate translation: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty G-d, Eternal Father called his name "Prince of Peace")." Isaiah 9:6 "For the increase of government and endless peace, on the throne of David and his kingdom, to establish it and sustain it with justice and righteousness, from now to forever. The zeal of the L-rd of hosts will do this." Missionaries claim that since a boy is called "mighty G-d, eternal father" this must refer to a man-god, namely Jesus. Is this so? If we follow the alternate translation (which is perfectly consistent with Hebrew syntax), no boy is called "G-d." Rather, G-d is naming the boy "Prince of Peace." If we accept the first translation, in which "mighty G-d" is part of the boy's name, this too gives no support for missionaries. The boy lived In Isaiah' s time. Let us look at the verse preceding verses: Isaiah 9:1 "The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light: those who dwelled in the land of the shadow of death, upon them has light shone. 9:2 You exalted the nation, increased its joy: they rejoice before You like the joy at harvest time, as they would rejoice when dividing the spoil. 9:3 For You smashed the YOKE of their BURDEN, and the STAFF of their SHOULDER, the ROD that oppressed them, as in the day of Midian. 9:4For every tumultuous battle is with great noise and garments rolled in blood; but it became a blaze consumed by fire. We see that Isaiah is speaking of Israel's deliverance from an military enemy. This enemy is referred to as a "yoke", "burden" and "rod" that oppresses Israel on the "shoulder." The Prince of Peace led the Jewish people at the time of victory. This victory is compared to the victory over Midian (Judges 7). How much does this have to do with the birth of Jesus centuries after Isaiah? Nothing! The Jewish people experienced nothing of the sort at that time. Roman oppression of Israel grew worse, culminating in the destruction of the Temple decades later. Furthermore, Isaiah speaks in the past tense: "A child was born", "a son was given." He speaks of a boy who already exists, not any future birth. "Government shall be upon his shoulder" cannot refer to Jesus, who had no political office. Although Jesus claimed that his kingdom was "not of this world", and the New

Testament depicts Pilate as calling him "King of the Jews" at his crucifixion, this does not fulfill the prophecy of Isaiah. The Hebrew term MISRAH refers to actual political office. "From now and to eternity" does not apply to Jesus. How can Isaiah say "from now" about someone to be born centuries after these words are spoken? Clearly the Prince of Peace's reign begins in Isaiah's time. So which event is Isaiah discussing? That is not difficult to answer. The very next chapter tells us. Assyria is the enemy mentioned previously. They are referred by the same terms (rod, yoke, burden) mentioned in chapter nine. Isaiah 10:5 "Woe to Assyria, the ROD of Mine anger, and the STAFF in their hand is My wrath." Assyria is the rod that afflicted Israel. Assyria angered G-d by refusing to recognize that G-d was using them as His rod, and they arrogantly attributed their strength to themselves. Isaiah 10:15 "Shall the ax glory over the one who chops with it? Shall the saw be greater than the one who wields it? It is as if a ROD could shake those who lift it up, as if a STAFF lifts one that is not wood." The manner of victory against Assyria is also described by Isaiah. Isaiah 10:17 "And the light of Israel shall be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame: and it shall burn and consume his thorns and weeds in one day." The defeat of Assyria did occur in one day. "It came to pass on that night than an angel of G-d went out and slew one hundred eighty-five thousand of the camp of Assyria. They arose in the morning and behold they were all dead corpses (II Kings 19:35)." The prophet again refers to Assyria as a rod. Isaiah 10:24 "Therefore so says the Lord G-D of hosts," My people that dwell in Zion, be not afraid of Assyria: though he will smite you with a ROD, and shall lift up his STAFF against you, in the manner of Egypt." The prophet makes a comparison to the defeat of Midian as he did in chapter nine. G-d will reciprocally raise a "rod" and "staff" against Assyria itself. Isaiah 10:26 "And the L-rd of hosts will arouse a ROD for him, like the defeat of MIDIAN at the rock of Oreb, and as his STAFF was upon the sea [of Reeds], and carry him like the manner of Egypt." The prophet describes Assyria as a "yoke" upon Israel's "shoulder", as he described the enemy and Israel in chapter nine.

Isaiah 10:27 "It will be on that day, that He will remove his BURDEN from off your SHOULDER, and his YOKE from your neck, and the YOKE will be destroyed because of oil." Who, then is the Prince of Peace? Since he is associated with the downfall of Assyria, he can be identified. He is Hezekiah. He was a son of King Ahaz at the time Isaiah spoke. Hezekiah was the king who enjoyed the quick destruction of Assyria at a time when his own kingdom appeared to be lost. Through him the dynasty of David was preserved. As it is clear that the Prince of Peace lived during Isaiah's time, we will now counter the missionary claim that Isaiah 9:5 refers to a divine human. Isaiah refers to an "EL GIBOR, AVI AD." The literal translation is "mighty G-d, eternal father." Missionaries make two mistakes regarding "mighty G-d." First, it is incorrect that naming a person or thing after G-d indicates that the object being named is G-d. Jacob calls an altar "G-d, G-d of Israel (Genesis 33:20)." Jerusalem is called 'The L-rd our righteousness (Jeremiah 33:16)." Clearly Jacob is not saying the altar is divine. Clearly Jerusalem is not to be worshipped. Their names are a tribute to G-d. People too are named after G-d in Hebrew. Chananya means "gracious G-d." Tovia means "good G-d." Second, it is a misconception that EL always means G-d. The Bible uses EL and ELOHIM to refer to agents of power. Judges are called ELOHIM (Exodus 21:6). So is Moses (Exodus 7:1). Powers subordinate to G-d are referred to as EL (Exodus 15:11). There is no proof that Isaiah is speaking of a divine human. In fact, nothing could be more anti-Biblical than the idea of a divine human. "I will not carry out My wrath, I will not recant and destroy Ephraim, for I am G-d and not a man (Hosea 11:9)." Why is Hezekiah called "eternal father?" Misreading the preceding words, and ignoring historical context, missionaries assume this is describing a god. Hezekiah is an eternal father in the sense that he is the King of the Jews who upheld the House of David. This righteous man removed idolatry and led his people to repentance. The Davidic dynasty was perpetuated in his merit and will culminate in the coming of the Messiah. He remains a father of the Jews to this day. It is asked how "from now and to eternity" can apply to Hezekiah if the Jewish people were sent into exile after his death. "Eternity" is understood in context as: until the end of Hezekiah's life. When Hannah said of her son Samuel "and abide there forever (I Samuel 1:22)" she was not speaking of an absolute eternity. Summary: Context shows Isaiah is speaking of a boy born in his time. Hezekiah is the Prince of Peace who reigns during the miraculous defeat of Assyria.

Isaiah makes no reference whatsoever to a divine human. Missionaries manipulate Isaiah 9:5 to promote a different religion.

Source: SimplyJewish.org -- http://www.anti-missionary.com

PLEASE visit these useful websites for more information:

www.MessiahTruth.com : The Real Jewish Messiah www.jewsforjudaism.com Response to Missionaries www.outreachjudaism.org An international organization that responds directly to the issues raised by missionaries and cults. http://jdstone.org/cr/index.html Reveals the error, distortions and falsehood of... http://www.kosherjudaism.com/counter.htm Archive of Articles; trinity, messiah, Jesus, Christianity... http://www.angelfire.com/my/tgoldman0/prophet.htm An Explanation of Christians Prophecies www.TorahAtlanta.com Jewish Articles and Response to Christian claims on G-d and the Messiah.

PLEASE visit these useful websites for more information:

www.MessiahTruth.com : The Real Jewish Messiah www.jewsforjudaism.org Response to Missionaries www.outreachjudaism.org An international organization that responds directly to the issues raised by missionaries and cults. http://jdstone.org/cr/index.html Reveals the error, distortions and falsehood of xianity http://www.kosherjudaism.com/counter.htm Archive of Articles; trinity, messiah, Jesus & Christianity http://www.angelfire.com/my/tgoldman0/prophet.htm An Explanation of Christians Prophecies www.TorahAtlanta.com Jewish Articles and Response to Christian claims on G-d and the Messiah. www.simplyjewish.org If you want to understand the differences recognized by Jews and Christians alike. SIMPLY JEWISH! IS FOR YOU http://www.beingjewish.com/toshuv/ The Anti-Missionary Gateway of the Being Jewish Web Site http://www.jewsforjudaism.org/phpBB2/index.php Jews for Judaism - Keeping Jews Jewish http://home.att.net/%7Efiddlerzvi/j4j_no.html Messianic Verses in the TaNaCh http://www.drazin.com/ e-book Their Hollow Inheritance A Comprehensive Refutation of Christian Missionaries by Michoel Drazin http://www.simpletoremember.com/audio/jewish-response-to-christian-missionaries.htm Jewish
Response To Christian Missionaries" MP3s tapes & in-depth guide.

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