Who or What is Satan?

We have been led to believe that Satan is just a mischievous imp that tries to influence us to do wrong things. Thus, many believe that he is like the TV ad that displays a person with two little beings, one on each shoulder. One has horns and a pitchfork and the other has a halo above his head. They are each trying to get us to do different things, the first one is trying to get us to do something bad and the one with the halo is trying to get us to doing something good. And all we have to do is to make a choice between the two.

The Real Satan

However, the real story about who Satan is, is found in the Bible and it tells us a very different fact about him. He is not just a mischievous imp that tries to influence us to do bad things. Rather, he is an immensely powerful, unutterable malevolent spirit being who lives to murder and deceive mankind.

Satan is the original sinner. Satan is a fallen angel who wants to be like God. He wants to be worshipped and receive the glory that belongs to God only. The truth is that he will do anything and everything that he can to achieve his goal. This is why we need to be aware of him and what he is doing.

Where Satan Came From

God tells us in Ezekiel 28:11-19 exactly where Satan came from and what his destiny will be. I know that some say that this passage only talks about the king of Tyre because that is the term that is used in verse 12. However, if you read verse 13 you know that it does not refer to a human, because the person that God is talking about was in Eden when God created Adam and Eve. This was certainly not the human king of Tyre.

Satan was originally created perfect in every way. Look at what Ezekiel 28:12 says about him. Ezekiel 28:12 (NIV) “You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.” Verse 14 goes on to talk about the important position that he held in heaven. Ezekiel 28:14 (NIV): “You were anointed as a guardian cherub, for so I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God; you walked among the fiery stones.”

Who Satan Was

Another passage that helps us understand who Satan is, is found in Isaiah 14:12-20. Here, Satan is called Lucifer. Lucifer comes from a Hebrew word that means “Morning Star.” It is a word that signifies “brightness.” The second phrase used to describe him is “son of the morning” or “son of the dawn.”

If we combine this with what Ezekiel says about him, we begin to realize that he was not just one of the highest angels in heaven, he was one of the most important angels in heaven. And, because verse 17 mentions his beauty, he was probably one of the most beautiful (if not the most beautiful) angel in heaven.

Another very important point that we need to realize is that Lucifer (Satan) was not a god, he was a created being. Ezekiel 28:15 (NIV) tells us this: “You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you.” Thus, Satan is not equal with God, he just tries to get us to believe that he is.

Who Satan Is Now

Ezekiel 28:15 (NIV) tells us what happened to Lucifer. “You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you.” In other words, he rebelled against God and it was all because he became proud of who he was. Ezekiel 28:17 (NIV) says: “Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor.”

But he did not just rebel by himself, he led many other angels who followed him in his rebellion. Rev. 12:7-8 (NIV) says “And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.”

What Satan Is Doing Now

I could write a whole book on this subject. In fact many people have. However, there are a few very important points that we need to realize. Satan was not destroyed. He was not made powerless. I don’t know why God did this, but He had his reasons, and all we can do is to trust Him.

Satan was cast down to the earth where he now lives. Ezekiel 28:16-17 (NIV): “So I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, O guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones.  …… So I threw you to the earth.”

I Peter tells us what he is doing right now. I Peter 5:8 (NIV): “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”  The Greek word translated “enemy” means an “opponent, especially Satan.”

In other words, Satan is so mad at God for casting him out of heaven that he is now trying to destroy His prized creation, the human race. He does not just want to tempt us into doing evil, he wants to utterly destroy us.

Satan Is Not All-Powerful

As powerful as Satan is, he is no match for those who have accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior and have the Holy Spirit living in them. Listen to what I John 4:4 (NIV) says: “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” Who is “them?” Read the previous verses and you will realize that John is talking about the evil spirits (including Satan) that are now roaming the world.


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