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The Origin and Identity of Satan

The famed preacher Peter Marshall once said that Satan was the personification of man. Those words stuck with me, and I have often pondered them over the years, asking the Lord for understanding. I couldn’t see it the way Marshall put it, but I sensed there was truth in those words when I first red them in the 70’s.

Satan has been a mystery to all of us. Should that be any wonder, he being the prince of darkness, the deceiver, thief, murderer, and father of lies?

Though an enigma, however, he has been much nearer at hand than most have imagined.

Of him, the apostle Paul wrote:

“In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious Gospel of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (2 Corinthians 4:4, KJV).

“And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel [messenger] of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14, KJV).

Who is Satan? When was he created? What is his history? How may we discern and identify him?

What is written here will come as a surprise to many because they have been indoctrinated with false notions from orthodox Christendom, which blends ancient pagan teachings with Biblical ones. Many teachers of the orthodox tradition are theological intellectuals with degrees and PhD’s. As Paul warned:

“For I know this, that after my departure grievous wolves shall enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also men shall arise from your own selves, speaking perverse things in order to draw disciples away after them. Therefore watch and remember that for the time of three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears” (Acts 20:29-31 MKJV).

It was not long before most, if not all, of the so-called “church fathers” fulfilled Paul’s words.

This destructive mixture of truth and falsehood has come from men, who often come in the Name of Jesus Christ. It is the work of Satan’s wife, Mystery, Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots, a spiritual organism of people in heaven and on earth. As the Body of Christ is a spiritual organism made up of born-again believers in heaven and on earth, so Mystery, Babylon the Great is made up of people in heaven (the spiritual dimension) and on earth.

She, in her corporate body, has subjected the children of this world to confusion and destruction. And why shouldn’t Satan’s wife, his body, faithfully do his work, being one with him?

“And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all those who were slain on the earth” (Revelation 18:24 MKJV).

Take note that Mystery, Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots, represents the false religious works of men:

“Concerning the works of men, by the Words of Your lips, I am kept from the paths of the destroyer” (Psalms 17:4 MKJV).

So the works of men are the paths of the destroyer? And they, through their collective representative, Mystery, Babylon the Great, are responsible for the blood of all slain on earth? Doesn’t Satan have any blame coming to him, or is it Satan, the murderer, we are talking about?

Satan, the Adversarial Dignitary

Nominal Christendom is right teaching that Satan is the adversary of Jesus Christ and the saints, as expressed in the Scriptures. For example, Michael the archangel of God was upset with Satan for opposing him:

Jude 1:8-9 KJV
(8) Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.
(9) Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the Devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.

Note that it was not advisable for Michael to treat Satan any way he pleased, even if Satan was in the wrong in Michael’s judgment. Isn’t that interesting? The Bible suggests that Satan is a dignitary under God. That’s not the way orthodox Christendom depicts or treats him. There must therefore be more to Satan than is commonly realized.

Satan in Heaven and Earth

While most nominal Christians believe Satan was cast out of Heaven before the creation of man, we find that Satan was in Heaven among the sons of God in Job’s day, as they presented themselves before God, obviously at a time after creation of the earth and the fall of man.

Was Satan always in Heaven? If not, how did he get there? And when, why, and how was he cast out, if he was cast out? Those questions and more will be answered as you continue reading. It is a wonderfully emancipating experience when we come to realize that God not only makes lemonade of lemons, He is the One Who first made lemons sour for His purposes. He is in full control!

Satan has his place in Heaven and on earth, for a time, just as God has purpose for every one of His creatures and every human being. There are no accidents with Him.

Satan, God’s Servant

While Satan is our adversary (“the accuser of the brethren” – Revelation 12:10), the predator who goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8), is he entirely the Lord’s adversary? Yes, the Lord does battle with him and appoints Michael to cast him out of Heaven - the spiritual realm of power and rulership (Revelation 12:7-9), but we also see how God uses Satan to accomplish His purpose in man.

For example, God used Satan as an instrument to deal with Job:

Job 1:6-8,12 KJV
(6) Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.
(7) And the LORD said to Satan, From where do you come? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
(8) And the LORD said to Satan, Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that fears God, and eschews evil? ...
(12) And the LORD said to Satan, Behold, all that he has is in your power; only upon himself put not forth your hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.

Was God surprised to see him there in Heaven, among His sons? Not only was He not surprised, He appointed him a task of power over a son of God, over a man made in His image, none other than one who was perfect and upright, who feared God and eschewed evil.

The conclusion of the story is that Job was delivered from his bondage of self-righteousness. He had trusted in his powers of sacrifice and obedience to earn God’s favor, until Satan was done wreaking his havoc on him. In the end, Job declared to God:

“I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear; but now my eye has seen You. Therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes” (Job 42:5-6 MKJV).

That isn’t the only time we see Satan play this kind of role. The apostle Paul candidly declares that God kept him humble through Satan:

2 Corinthians 12:6-9 MKJV
(6) For if I desire to boast, I shall not be foolish. For I will speak the truth. But I spare, lest anyone should think of me as being beyond what he sees me, or hears of me;
(7) and by the surpassing revelations, lest I be made haughty, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be made haughty.
(8) For this thing I besought the Lord three times, that it might depart from me.
(9) And He said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore I will rather glory in my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may overshadow me.

By imprisoning God’s chosen people (physically or spiritually), the Devil (or Satan) serves God’s purposes:

“Do not at all fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the Devil will cast some of you into prison, so that you may be tried. And you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful to death, and I will give you the crown of life” (Revelation 2:10 MKJV).

So we see that Satan does much good for the saints, according to God’s will. God uses Satan’s adversarial nature to refine men in spirit and motive, bringing them to perfection. Only then will all things become subject to mankind, because men have returned to their rightful place of rulership with God. That may not be Satan’s intent, but it is God’s intent. “A man’s heart devises his way but the Lord directs his steps” (Proverbs 16:9).

Here’s another example of Satan fulfilling God’s will:

“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit up into the wilderness, to be tempted by the Devil” (Matthew 4:1 MKJV).

How could Satan have free access to Jesus, except by the Father’s will and determination? Unless God is out of control to some degree, which of course He isn’t, Satan is appointed by Him to perform his tasks. The wording tells us that God arranged this rendezvous for the express purpose of trying His Son, in preparation for the work ahead.

Satan’s Origin

It has been commonly believed that Satan existed before creation. Not that all knowledge is contained in the Bible, but there is no record in Scripture to justify this belief. Is Satan not known as the serpent?

“And the great dragon was cast out, the old serpent called Devil, and Satan, who deceives the whole world. He was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him” (Revelation 12:9 MKJV).

“And I saw an angel come down from Heaven, having the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years” (Revelation 20:1-2 MKJV).

Genesis says that the serpent was created the very day man was created:

Genesis 1:24-31 MKJV
(24) And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after its kind, cattle, and creepers, and its beasts of the earth after its kind; and it was so.
(25) And God made the beasts of the earth after its kind, and cattle after their kind, and all creepers upon the earth after their kind. And God saw that it was good.
(26) And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the heavens, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over all the creepers creeping on the earth.
(27) And God created man in His image; in the image of God He created him. He created them male and female.
(28) And God blessed them. And God said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply and fill the earth, and subdue it. And have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the heavens, and all animals that move upon the earth.
(29) And God said, Behold! I have given you every herb seeding seed which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree in which is the fruit of a tree seeding seed; to you it shall be for food.
(30) And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the heavens, and to every creeper on the earth which has in it a living soul every green plant is for food; and it was so.
(31) And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

The serpent was “good,” in that he was created as intended, with his subtlety and propensity, indeed, appointed mission, to tempt the children of God, Adam and Eve. And consider that God made the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, which would be included in all that was “good.”

The Serpent Not a Snake

It is speculated that the serpent in Eden was the creature we know as a serpent or snake today, except at that time, before the temptation and consequent curse, the serpent knew about God, walked, talked, and reasoned with man, so much so that he could persuade children of God to disobey their Heavenly Father.

It is believed that the creature that has been able do little more than hiss, crawl, go underground, “eat dust,” swim, slither up trees, frighten and devour other creatures, strike with venom, and even kill people is the same one spoken of in Genesis, the one who took the life of Adam and Eve.

It is proposed by some that the serpent was victimized by Satan, a prehistorically-existing spirit, a once glorious angel, who had fallen by the time of creation of the heavens and the earth. It is theorized that Satan possessed the serpent and used “it” as a vehicle to approach Eve.

But we must ask - where do we find evidence for those teachings in Scripture? The proponents cite Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28. We will handily prove these references invalid as support for such doctrine.

Given that Adam and Eve knew the creatures God made (for Adam named them according to their natures), would it not have been a strange thing that a beast, as we know beasts today, should talk to Eve? If able to talk, was it really the kind of creature we associate with the common snake today, or was it a “he” rather than an “it”?

What Is a Beast?

Let’s just believe the simple declarations of the Bible and put away - by God’s grace - indoctrination, speculation, rationalization, and imagination. The “beast,” or more accurately put in modern English - “living creature” (Strong’s #H2416), was able to talk and to reason. We know that only man of all creatures on earth can do that. Man is a “living creature,” that is, in the KJV’s term, a beast. Is it not therefore justifiable to believe that the beast of the field, called the serpent, was a man as we have always known man - an intelligent, reasoning two-legged creature?

If in the creation, there were only Adam and Eve and non-human animals, then where did the other people come from? I think of Cain’s wife and those who populated the city Cain built (Genesis 4:17). Where did Seth’s wife come from? God was never a God of incest, as some have so foolishly speculated.

Only Intelligent Creatures Spoke and Reasoned

It is speculated that perhaps all creatures were able to talk or communicate with man before sin entered. Yet there is no record of any other creature ever speaking (except for Balaam’s ass, which was an exceptional, supernatural case). When Abel offered sacrifice to God from his flocks, would he, in righteousness, have offered up a creature that could have talked and reasoned with him before the Fall?

Would all living creatures have lost their powers of speech and reason in the Fall, had they begun with any? Were they as guilty as the serpent? If not guilty, why should they have been punished? The record shows that God pronounced judgment only on those partaking in the sin – the serpent and Adam and Eve (son and daughter of God).

And God said nothing to the serpent about taking away his ability to speak. No, the talking “living creature” was a man without the Spirit of God, dealing with Eve. And he, being a child of this world, was “wiser in his generation than the children of light” (Luke 16:8).

Peter Marshall had it at least partially right. Satan was and is a man, which is more than a personification!

The Serpent Cunning from the Beginning

It is not true that Satan took possession of the serpent in Eden. Consider that the serpent “was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made.” He was created and introduced as cunning, so cunning that he could reason with Eve and persuade her to go against God’s command to Adam, namely that they were not to eat of the Tree of Knowledge.

Wasn’t the serpent made a reasoning creature (a man) from the start to do what he was doing, without evil inspiration from some manipulative supernatural spirit? Here is what Jesus said of him to Satan’s children, men:

“You are of the Devil as father, and the lusts of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and did not abide in the truth because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own, for he is a liar and the father of it” (John 8:44 MKJV).

“He was a murderer from the beginning.” From what or whose beginning? The serpent’s beginning - not the earth’s, Eden’s, Heaven’s, an angel’s, or an age’s, but Satan’s. The serpent, and not some mythical evil entity originating in the ether, is the father of lies.

Satan = The Serpent

If a spirit entered a physical creature, ask yourself why the spirit would be called a “serpent,” by the original name of the physical creature it entered and inhabited. Wouldn’t that spirit have been known by its own identity?

“Satan entered into Judas…” - Satan was still Satan and Judas was still Judas.

When Jesus addressed the unclean spirit in the demoniac by the tombs and asked his name, the reply was “Legion.” The answer wasn’t the man’s name, but rather the name of the evil entity inhabiting him.

Therefore, the serpent was speaking on his own behalf, unless otherwise indicated.

With Lies, Satan Gives Truthful Facts

Notice how, in his deception, Satan spoke truth. The serpent said Adam and Eve would be as God, knowing good and evil:

Genesis 3:5-7 MKJV
(5) For God knows that in the day you eat of it, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as God, knowing good and evil.
(6) And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasing to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make wise, she took of its fruit, and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.
(7) And the eyes of both of them were opened. And they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made girdles for themselves.

The serpent was right. Even God confirmed his words:

Genesis 3:22-24 MKJV
(22) And the LORD God said, Behold, the man has become as one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put forth his hand and take also of the Tree of Life, and eat, and live forever,
(23) therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he had been taken.
(24) And He drove out the man. And He placed cherubs 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.

Is Satan Flesh and Blood, or Is He Spirit?

Satan is a spirit – the Bible clearly declares so:

“And He has made you alive, who were once dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience” (Ephesians 2:1-2 MKJV).

What about men? Men have physical bodies, but are primarily spiritual beings:

“… then the dust shall return to the earth as it was, and the spirit shall return to God Who gave it” (Ecclesiastes 12:7 MKJV).

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenlies in Christ; according as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love” (Ephesians 1:3-4 MKJV).

The Bible declares we were at creation with Him, the sons of God who shouted for joy at the foundation of the earth (Job 38:4-7). Are we not spiritual beings having a physical experience on earth?

Satan began as a physical being in Eden as a man, and sons of God began their sojourn on earth as men with God’s Spirit, so as to be developed into God’s image.

Satan, the Man

Take note how the work of Satan comes by the hand of men, the children of disobedience:

“I will be his Father, and he shall be My son. If he commits iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the sons of men” (2 Samuel 7:14 MKJV).

Jesus, walking in victory and obedience, rebuked Satan coming through Peter, or He rebuked Peter as Satan:

Matthew 16:21-23 MKJV
(21) From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day.
(22) Then Peter took Him and began to rebuke Him, saying, God be gracious to You, Lord! This shall never be to You.
(23) But He turned and said to Peter, Go, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you do not savor the things that are of God, but those that are of men.

Satan came through a man chosen as an apostle of Jesus Christ! How can these things be?

Jesus didn’t say that men savored the things of Satan, but that Satan savored the things of men! Why? Because he was a man.

The serpent in the Garden was a man, a “living creature” (not a beast, as we know the term in our culture today); he was someone who reasoned, walked, and talked, and who still does. God made him that way from the very beginning!

Luke records: “And Satan entered into Judas, surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the Twelve” (Luke 22:3 MKJV).

The Gospels and Acts record numerous instances of demonic or Satanic possession of people (and even of animals - Matthew 8:28-34). How can Satan dwell in, and possess, a man if he himself is a man? How did he receive that power?

We will see how these things came to be. Is it not important to understand? Should one not know his enemy? Should the saints not know their enemy, his identity, and his ways, if they are to wage war and defeat him? Must Satan not be exposed to them?

“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves” (Matthew 10:16 MKJV).

“Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices” (2 Corinthians 2:11 KJV).

The Spirit-Flesh Connection

Paul said something remarkable that would indicate Satan comes as a man:

“Therefore we desired to come to you, truly I, Paul, both once and twice; but Satan hindered us” (1 Thessalonians 2:18 MKJV).

Was it a bodiless spirit that hindered them, or was it men? We know that the religious Jews sought many times to kill Paul for preaching the Gospel and for spreading what they called heresy throughout their world. Those very Jews that withstood and persecuted Jesus and His disciples were described by Jesus as being children of their father the Devil. Yes, it was men, serpents, hindering Paul and his companions. Jesus addressed them as such:

Offspring of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34 MKJV).

Matthew 23:33-35 MKJV
(33) Serpents! Offspring of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell?
(34) Therefore, behold, I send prophets and wise men and scribes to you. And you will kill and crucify some of them. And some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city;
(35) so that on you may come all the righteous blood shed on the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah the son of Berachiah, whom you killed between the temple and the altar.

Who killed Abel? Cain. Who was Cain?:

“...not as Cain who was of the evil one, and killed his brother. And why did he kill him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s works were righteous” (1 John 3:12 MKJV).

Cain succumbed to sin, which is why it is said he was of the evil one. After God rejected his sacrifice, Cain was warned to resist evil by doing well, but he didn’t believe God and obey:

“If you do well, will you not have honor? And if you do wrong, sin is waiting at the door, desiring to have you, but do not let it be your master” (Genesis 4:7 BBE).

Cain killed his brother because his brother did right, while he, in envy, chose the wrong. Sin became his master, and he was sealed as a son of Satan, the liar and murderer.

The difference between the two brothers, born of the same parents, was not one of race, sex, lineage, or wealth. The difference was that one had faith, by God’s grace (yes, there most certainly was grace in the Old Testament) and the other had not faith. One became a devil (of the evil one), having chosen evil, and the other a son of God, having believed.

Who Are We Warned Against?

There is an important admonition that must be given. Consider that Satan is known as our arch foe. The Lord called him a murderer and liar from his origin, saying he comes to steal, to kill, and to destroy (John 10:10); however, he never once warned against Satan. Or did He? He frequently warned us of… men!

“Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves” (Matthew 7:15 MKJV).

“But beware of men, for they will deliver you up to the sanhedrins, and they will scourge you in their synagogues” (Matthew 10:17 MKJV).

“And Jesus said to them, Take heed, and beware the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees” (Matthew 16:6 MKJV).

“And He said to them in His teaching, Beware of the scribes, who love to walk about in robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the chief seats in the synagogues, and the uppermost places at feasts, who devour widows’ houses, and as a pretense make long prayers. These shall receive greater condemnation” (Mark 12:38-40 MKJV).

“Beware that no one deceive you. For many shall come in My Name, saying, I AM, and shall deceive many” (Mark 13:5-6 MKJV).

That’s precisely what Paul said, in slightly different and very revealing words:

“For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:13-14 EMTV).

How does Satan transform himself into an angel of light? He does so through men who come in the Name of Christ, the One Who is the Light of all men!

Men are the means by which Satan deceives mankind, keeping humanity in darkness. Therefore Paul didn’t warn the saints about Satan, so much as about men:

“Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision” (Philippians 3:2 HNV).

“Beware lest anyone rob you through philosophy and vain deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the elements of the world, and not according to Christ” (Colossians 2:8 MKJV).

“Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works; whom you also should guard against, for he has greatly resisted our words” (2 Timothy 4:14-15 EMTV).

Man Is a Serpent, or the Serpent Is a Man

Why should it surprise us that men without God’s Spirit are beasts, serpents with subtle reasoning? The Lord, Who came as a man, knew what was in man:

“But Jesus did not trust Himself to them, because He knew all men, and had no need that anyone should testify concerning man, for He Himself knew what was in man” (John 2:24-25 EMTV).

Man is not to be trusted. Truly, did not Judas, Christ’s betrayer, represent all men, being covetous and treacherous? According to the Scriptural testimony, it is so:

Romans 3:10-18 MKJV
(10) As it is written: There is none righteous, no not one;
(11) there is none that understands, there is none that seeks after God.
(12) They are all gone out of the way, they have together become unprofitable, there is none that does good, no, not one.
(13) Their throat is an open grave, with their tongues they have used deceit, the poison of asps is under their lips;
(14) whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness;
(15) their feet are swift to shed blood;
(16) destruction and misery are in their way,
(17) and the way of peace they did not know.
(18) There is no fear of God before their eyes.

Can an intelligent creature get any worse than that?

So did the Devil enter Judas, or was Judas a devil? Is it only one or the other?

“Jesus answered, It is he to whom I shall give the morsel when I have dipped it. And dipping the morsel, He gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon. And after the morsel, then Satan entered into him. Then Jesus said to him, What you do, do quickly” (John 13:26-27 MKJV).

Was Jesus speaking to Judas or the Devil in Judas? Earlier on, He said:

“Jesus answered them, Have I not chosen you, the Twelve? And one of you is a devil?” (John 6:70 MKJV)

So Who Is Satan?

Satan is man. He is in oneness with fallen man, who is the man of sin, the son of perdition. Was not Adam lost to the serpent? Did not the first Adam become the son of perdition, the man who sinned and therefore the man of sin?

He ate of the Tree of Knowledge, thinking he would be as God:

2 Thessalonians 2:1-10 MKJV
(1) Now we beseech you, my brothers, with regard to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him,
(2) that you should not be soon shaken in mind or troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word or letter, as through us, as if the Day of Christ is at hand.
(3) Let not anyone deceive you by any means. For that Day shall not come unless there first comes a falling away, and the man of sin shall be revealed, the son of perdition,
(4) who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the Temple of God, setting himself forth, that he is God.
(5) Do you not remember that I told you these things when I was still with you?
(6) And now you know what holds back, for him to be revealed in his own time.
(7) For the mystery of lawlessness is already working, only he is now holding back until it comes out of the midst.
(8) And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the breath of His mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming,
(9) whose coming is according to the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
(10) and with all deceit of unrighteousness in those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, so that they might be saved.

The first Adam disobeyed God; therefore he is the lawless one. His coming is according to the working of Satan (lying, stealing, killing, and destroying as a result of eating of the Tree of Knowledge), and with all power and signs and lying wonders. Have we not all been lawless? And have we not all thought we knew better and deserved to have our way?

Adam is a son of God; keep in mind that, even when fallen, sons of God have the vestiges of Godhood and accompanying powers.

Where Did Sin Begin?

For Adam and Eve, sin began in Eden. But was Adam and Eve’s sin the first of sin? If sin did not exist on earth before Adam and Eve partook of the Tree of Knowledge, then it was not sin for the living creature/beast (called the serpent) to be contradicting God and deceiving Eve into disobeying Him:

Genesis 3:1-5 MKJV
(1) Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he [not “it”] said to the woman, Is it so that God has said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
(2) And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden.
(3) But of the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.
(4) And the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die,
(5) for God knows that in the day you eat of it, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as God, knowing good and evil.

We know that evil existed before Adam and Eve sinned, for there was the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil in the Garden, which God had placed there. And the serpent deceived and persuaded Eve to eat of that Tree, which God had forbidden them.

To choose evil over good, or to choose to disobey God, is sin. The serpent essentially called God a liar, accused Him of selfish motives, and persuaded Eve to disobey God, all of which are sin, as we know it. So was there sin before Adam and Eve sinned?

If so, the serpent’s sin was not the same kind of sin as that of Adam and Eve. Remember, we know the serpent was created “good,” as the Word of God testifies:

“And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day” (Genesis 1:31 MKJV).

If the serpent was not forbidden to do what he did, then doing it was not sin, as we know it. Here is what the apostle Paul had to say about the Law and sin:

Romans 7:7-11 MKJV
(7) What shall we say then? Is the Law sin? Let it not be said! But I did not know sin except through the Law. For also I did not know lust except the Law said, You shall not lust.
(8) But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, worked in me all kinds of lust. For apart from Law sin was dead.
(9) For I was alive without the Law once. But when the commandment came, sin revived and I died.
(10) And the commandment, which was to life, was found to be death to me.
(11) For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it killed me.

Adam was told what not to do, and he disobeyed. That is sin. As far as we know, the serpent was not forbidden to do what he did.

But didn’t God curse the serpent for what he had done?

“And the LORD God said to the serpent, Because you have done this you are cursed more than all cattle, and more than every animal of the field. You shall go upon your belly, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life. And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He will bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel” (Genesis 3:14-15 MKJV).

If it was sin for the serpent to do what he did, for which he was cursed, it would mean the serpent sinned before Adam and Eve did. Therefore there must be two kinds of sin. There is the sin of Adam and Eve, who chose to disobey God, and there is the sin of the serpent, who did what came naturally, according to the nature God had given him. The King James Version puts it this way:

“Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of Him that was to come” (Romans 5:14 KJV).

Does that not speak of the nature of the sin of the serpent and his seed, as well as the nature of the sin of the children of God? Is the difference simply that the serpent sins without the Law, while the son of God sins with the Law, which Law only sons of God know and understand? The apostle Paul wrote:

“For as many as sinned without Law will also perish without Law. And as many as have sinned within Law shall be judged through Law” (Romans 2:12 MKJV).

There are many apparent faults in men’s speculations and opinions about sin and the nature, origin, and identity of Satan. Of course, this confusion is the way of the serpent, an intelligent, reasoning, subtle, deceptive creature, otherwise known as “man.” This confusion is also the product of being in the dark and lacking light. Darkness and confusion are Satan’s specialties.

Who Is Lucifer?

It is commonly taught that the passage in Isaiah referring to Lucifer (“light-bearer,” “shining star,” “son of the morning”) is speaking of Satan:

Isaiah 14:12-27 MKJV
(12) How you are fallen from the heavens, O shining star, son of the morning [KJV says, “Lucifer”]! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations!
(13) For you have said in your heart, I will go up to the heavens, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.
(14) I will go up above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High.
(15) Yet you shall be brought down to Hell, to the sides of the Pit.
(16) Those who see you shall stare and closely watch you, saying, Is this the man who made the earth to tremble; who shook kingdoms;
(17) who made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed its cities; who did not open the house for his prisoners?
(18) All the kings of the nations, even all of them, lie in glory, every one in his own house.
(19) But you are cast out of your grave like a hateful branch, and like the clothing of those who are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go down to the stones of the pit; like a dead body trampled under foot.
(20) You shall not be joined with them in burial, because you ruined your land and killed your people; the seed of evildoers shall never be famous.
(21) Prepare slaughter for his sons, because of the iniquity of their fathers, so that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of the world with cities.
(22) For I will rise up against them, says the LORD of Hosts, and cut off from Babylon the name and remnant, and son, and grandson, says the LORD.
(23) I will also make it a possession of the hedgehog, and pools of water; and I will sweep it with the broom of ruin, says the LORD of Hosts.
(24) The LORD of Hosts has sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so it shall come to pass; and as I have purposed, it shall stand;
(25) to break Assyria in My land, and on My mountains, trample him under foot. Then his yoke shall be removed from them, and his burden shall be taken off their shoulders.
(26) This is the purpose that is purposed on all the earth; and this is the hand that is stretched out on all the nations.
(27) For the LORD of Hosts has purposed, and who shall reverse it? And His hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?

Note that Isaiah speaks of a man, a specific one at that - the king of Babylon. Note that the Spirit of God through Isaiah refers to Lucifer’s remnant - son and grandson. Does Satan have sons and grandsons? Also, God not only speaks of Lucifer, but of the whole empire of Babylon with him.

Lucifer’s Judgment Fulfilled

Isaiah prophesied these words - and they came to pass centuries later. The nation of Babylon is no more, and the once glorious Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon and head of gold (Daniel 2), came to be humbled (Daniel 4).

Why was the king of Babylon humbled? Because in his heart and with his mouth he declared, “I will go up to the heavens, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north. I will go up above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High.”

Where and when did Nebuchadnezzar think and say such things?

Daniel 4:29-33 MKJV
(29) At the end of twelve months he walked in the palace of the kingdom of Babylon.
(30) The king spoke and said, Is this not great Babylon that I have built for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power and for the honor of my majesty?
(31) While the word was in the king’s mouth, a voice fell from Heaven, saying, O King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken. The kingdom has departed from you.
(32) And they shall drive you from men, and your dwelling shall be with the animals of the field. They shall make you eat grass like oxen, and seven times shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He will.
(33) The same hour the thing was fulfilled on Nebuchadnezzar. And he was driven from men, and ate grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of the heavens, until his hair had grown like eagles’ feathers, and his nails like birds’ claws.

So how can anyone say those words were about Satan, unless the spirit of Satan was being manifested by the unregenerate spirit of man given over to self-glorification and evil? So in a sense, it is true this was about Satan, as Nebuchadnezzar, representative of the first Adam, was walking in the ways of the serpent.

We also know that the image described in Daniel 2 represented the kingdoms of men, Babylon being the first and most glorious, the head of gold, with King Nebuchadnezzar ruling. Also known as Lucifer, Nebuchadnezzar demonstrates how Satan comes in man, and man as Satan.

Heaven and Earth Intertwined

There is an intimate relationship between what happens on earth and what happens in Heaven. The two are intertwined. Here Gabriel tells Daniel about the battle he was engaged in, involving men and angels:

“But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia” (Daniel 10:13 KJV).

And what of this, fighting over the body of Moses?:

“But Michael, the archangel, when contending with the Devil, he argued about the body of Moses, he dared not bring a judgment of blasphemy, but said, Let the Lord rebuke you!” (Jude 1:9 MKJV)

And what do the following words signify, if not a direct correlation between Heaven and earth, the spiritual and physical?:

“Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I say to you that in Heaven their angels always behold the face of My Father in Heaven” (Matthew 18:10 MKJV).

“Do not be forgetful of hospitality, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it” (Hebrews 13:2 MKJV).

Also consider that Moses and Elijah, after leaving earth, hadn’t left it as much as one might think. They were still very involved with the affairs on earth, even concerning the affairs of none other than the Son of God:

Luke 9:28-31 EMTV
(28) Now it came to pass, about eight days after these words, that He took Peter, John, and James and went up on the mountain to pray.
(29) And while He was praying, the appearance of His face became different, and His clothing became white and glistening.
(30) And behold, two men were talking with Him, who were Moses and Elijah,
(31) who appearing in glory were talking about His decease which He was about to accomplish in Jerusalem.

How and When Did Satan Enter the Heavens?

The fact is that Satan, being man, is both physical and spiritual, just as we have known man to be physical and spiritual. Satan began in the Garden of Eden in physical form as a man, called the serpent, and overcame the son and daughter of God, Adam and Eve, through subtlety and temptation, as purposed in God’s grand scheme of things. He thereby usurped Adam’s authority as prince or god over all the earth. That's why Satan was able to appear among the sons of God (Job 1:6), in Adam's place.

Thus were the sons of God and all men made subject to vanity:

“For the creation was not willingly subjected to vanity, but because of Him Who subjected it on hope…” (Romans 8:20 MKJV).

“Subjected to vanity.” In other words: “And the LORD God said to the serpent, Because you have done this you are cursed more than all cattle, and more than every animal of the field. You shall go upon your belly, and you shall eat dust all the days of your life” (Genesis 3:14 MKJV).

Hasn’t man been eating dust ever since? Have we not been earthbound, captive to our animal instincts and passions?

“He who labors works for himself, for his mouth craves it from him” (Proverbs 16:26 MKJV).

“Let their table become a snare before them: and that which should have been for their welfare, let it become a trap” (Psalms 69:22 KJV).

The saints of God are those called up to a higher realm and state, while yet living on this physical plane. And in the process of being taken up, they call on God to deliver them from the dominion of the serpent, within and without:

Psalms 44:22-26 MKJV
(22) Yea, for Your sake we are put to death all the day long; we are counted as sheep for the slaughter.
(23) Awaken! Why do You sleep, O LORD? Arise! Do not cast us off forever.
(24) Why do You hide Your face, and forget our affliction and distress?
(25) For our soul is bowed down to the dust; our belly holds fast to the earth.
(26) Arise for our help, and redeem us for the sake of Your mercy.

Adam’s sin led to the Tree of Life being cut off from him and thereby from all men (Genesis 3:24). When the serpent died, he passed on victorious into the spiritual realm to rule over all the kingdoms of the earth. He has been known as Satan, the adversary, the enemy of all good, the Devil, the dragon, the great serpent, liar, murderer, tempter, and the accuser of the brethren. He lives to control all men on earth of like nature, however and wherever God permits him to do so. He does so by the power of death:

“Since then the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise partook of the same; that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death (that is, the Devil)” (Hebrews 2:14 MKJV).

All of creation groans for the sons of God to regain their rightful position:

“For the earnest expectation of the creation waits for the manifestation of the sons of God” (Romans 8:19 MKJV).

Even the sons of God groan within for that day:

“And not only so, but ourselves also, who have the firstfruit of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, awaiting adoption, the redemption of our body” (Romans 8:23 MKJV).

The serpent is the ruling spirit, the prince of this world, against whom the children of God do battle and overcome by the Spirit of God through Jesus Christ, Who, by His death and resurrection, has received all power and authority in Heaven and earth.

We become victors through faith when we believe and obey God:

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7 KJV).

“Be sensible and vigilant, because your adversary the Devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking someone he may devour; whom firmly resist in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions in the world are being completed in your brotherhood” (1 Peter 5:8-9 MKJV).

How did the Serpent Get to Rule Earth from Above?

If the serpent began as a man on earth, how did he get into the spiritual realm to rule, evilly influence, and demonically possess, flesh and blood on earth?

The serpent didn’t give his life for Adam, but he took Adam’s life. Succumbing to his wife’s influence, Adam died the day he ate of the Tree of Knowledge, just as God had warned, “But you shall not eat of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. For in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Genesis 2:17 MKJV).

Adam was cast out of Eden, the throne room of the earth, losing his position of rulership with God. Consequently, the whole world lost the enlightened leadership of a son of God and the way of abundant life he was to represent.

In exchange, the world was made subject to the spirit and rulership of the serpent and his way of carnal knowledge, reasoning, and lawlessness, which bring death and destruction. This was the result of Adam’s forfeiture of godly power when he chose to disobey God, following his wife, who was deceived by the serpent.

Eventually, the serpent physically died, and because of his successful usurpation, he passed on into the heavens with his winnings. That is how he continued to rule in the spiritual realm as the prince of this world in place of the first Adam, a rule that began when Adam fell.

It would require the Last Adam, Jesus Christ, to come to earth as a man, pay the ransom for us, and pass into the heavens with His winnings to ultimately reverse the usurpation of the serpent, and to not only restore the first Adam to his original station, but well above. Glory to God!

The Prince of This World

While Satan is known as the prince of this world, the Scriptures also say men rule the earth:

“The heavens, even the heavens, are the LORD’s; but the earth He has given to the sons of men” (Psalms 115:16 MKJV).

We have also seen that Lucifer ruled at the head of men’s kingdoms on earth. So how did speculation that Lucifer is Satan come about? Since Lucifer is clearly said to be a man, we should go back to where the serpent (Satan) first interacted with the man God made in His image.

We see that Satan caused Adam to fall through his wife, whom Satan deceived. When Adam followed her and ate from the Tree of Knowledge, he took on Satan’s nature. He exchanged his Head for a new one – under the influence of the serpent and the Tree of Knowledge. Thus Satan usurped the position of ruler of this world.

Didn’t the serpent promise that any who ate from the Tree of Knowledge would become as God? And didn’t God confirm what the serpent said?

“And the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die, for God knows that in the day you eat of it, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as God, knowing good and evil” (Genesis 3:4-5 MKJV).

“And the LORD God said, Behold, the man has become as one of us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put forth his hand and take also of the Tree of Life, and eat, and live forever, therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he had been taken” (Genesis 3:22-23 MKJV).

Those coming after Adam and ruling the world under Satan, such as Nebuchadnezzar (aka Lucifer), exhibit the character of the usurper, which is manifest in wanting and presuming to be as God. Therefore Lucifer, the king of Babylon, is Satan, one ruling in his nature and under his authority, just as the apostles, ruling in the nature of God, are the Christ, the Last Adam Who has come to destroy the works of the Devil.

Ezekiel speaks of the downfall of a glorious one who was in Eden, referring to the king of Tyre:

Ezekiel 28:12-15 MKJV
(12) Son of man, lift up a lament over the king of Tyre, and say to him, So says the Lord GOD: You seal the measure, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.
(13) You have been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering, the ruby, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the turquoise, and the emerald, and gold. The workmanship of your tambourines and of your flutes was prepared in you in the day that you were created.
(14) You were the anointed cherub that covers, and I had put you in the holy height of God where you were; you have walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.
(15) You were perfect in your ways from the day that you were created, until iniquity was found in you.

How was the king of Tyre in Eden? Wasn’t Ezekiel speaking of Adam, who was once without iniquity, but was then found with it?

“And the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, Where are you? And he said, I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I am naked, and I hid myself. And He said, Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree which I commanded you that you should not eat?” (Genesis 3:9-11 MKJV)

As for Satan, we know from the Scriptures and from the Lord that he was a liar from the beginning, and not without iniquity:

“You are of the Devil as father, and the lusts of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and did not abide in the truth because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own, for he is a liar and the father of it” (John 8:44 MKJV).

So who was that wise and perfect one in the garden of God that fell from grace? Was it not Adam, represented by his progeny, the king of Tyre and the king of Babylon, sons of men who ruled the earth – through the serpent?

And what will happen to the kingdoms of men in the end? Will they not be destroyed? And by whom shall they be destroyed, if not by God and those who are His in Christ, the Last Adam?

Daniel 2:44-45 MKJV
(44) And in the days of these kings, the God of Heaven shall set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed. And the kingdom shall not be left to other peoples, but it shall crush and destroy all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.
(45) Because you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it crushes the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold, the great God has made known to the king what shall occur after this. And the dream is certain, and its meaning is sure. (Read the entire chapter.)

The Serpent’s Purpose

The serpent was created an adversary, an opponent, and an accuser, whereby the sons of God would be tried, even as the adversary tried the Son of God in the wilderness at the beginning of His ministry.

The Hebrew word for “serpent,” as found in Genesis 3 (Strong’s #H5175 – “naw-khawsh”) is rooted in the word “naw khash,” which means, among other things, “to learn by experience.”

Adam and Eve had to learn by experience, which means they needed to be made subject to all there was, including evil. They could not remain naïve or innocent. They, as raw material, had to be subjected to the processing, as gold is tried by fire and dough is baked into bread.

We are appointed to learn by experience. Textbook knowledge is never sufficient. While it may give students false confidence, they inevitably come to realize that knowledge is no match for experience. Man must learn the hard way, the only way there is to truly learn. All of creation was made subject to vanity, the Bible says:

“For the creation was not willingly subjected to vanity, but because of Him Who subjected it on hope” (Romans 8:20 MKJV).

The serpent was the instrument of experience by which God would subject man to vanity, as He created him in His image all the way to completion. By eating from the Tree of Knowledge, man learned to walk by sight and not by faith, reaping the bitter experience of trusting in himself and not being able to escape the corrupt fruits of doing so without a Savior. Man is imprisoned in his experience until the grace of God turns him away from trusting in himself to trusting in His Maker.

The Beginning of the Battle

When did the battle begin between Satan and the sons of God?

The war was engaged in the very beginning, in the Garden of Eden when the serpent beguiled Eve (the daughter of God), causing her to fall from the blessing and fellowship of God by eating of the forbidden Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Adam, the son of God (Luke 3:38), followed her into death that day by eating with her:

Genesis 3:1-6 MKJV
(1) Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, Is it so that God has said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
(2) And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden.
(3) But of the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.
(4) And the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die,
(5) for God knows that in the day you eat of it, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as God, knowing good and evil.
(6) And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasing to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make wise, she took of its fruit, and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.

Who Orchestrates the Battle?

It was then that God spoke, telling us the essence and the conclusion of the battle of the ages. Notice that the enmity is HIS doing, not Adam’s, Eve’s, or the serpent’s:

“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He will bruise your head [destroy you], and you shall bruise His heel [pain Him]” (Genesis 3:15 MKJV).

The Seed Who came through the woman is Jesus Christ, and as God in the flesh, the Son of Man (Christ) holds the key to defeating Satan on battleground earth.

I once had a vision many years ago:

I saw a throne placed outdoors, in the middle of a vast plain. I was seated on the ground by the empty chair, leaning against it, facing the same direction as the throne, with my right arm resting on its left arm. I was comfortably dressed in white casual garments, looking ahead at a great battle in progress.

The throne was the Lord’s. In front, several yards away, facing away from the chair and me, was the Lord. He was standing and watching that same battle raging ahead of Him in the distance. I knew it was a battle between the forces of good and evil. Jesus was calmly watching, in full control, and it seemed as if He was even orchestrating it. He seemed to know the outcome, that it was good.

Will Satan Be Saved?

This is a flashpoint question for many, especially those who don’t believe that Christ will reconcile all things to Himself (Romans 5:18; Colossians 1:20). Was it forever that Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, should suffer his fate? What does Daniel have to say?

Daniel 4:34-37 MKJV
(34) And at the end of days, I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up my eyes to Heaven, and my understanding returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and I praised and honored Him Who lives forever, Whose Kingdom is an everlasting Kingdom, and His rule is from generation to generation.
(35) And all the people of the earth are counted as nothing; and He does according to His will in the army of Heaven, and among the people of the earth. And none can strike His hand, or say to Him, What are You doing?
(36) At that time my reason returned to me. And the glory of my kingdom, my honor and brightness returned to me. And my advisers and my lords came for me, and I was established in my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added to me.
(37) Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and exalt and honor the King of Heaven, all Whose works are truth and His ways judgment. And those who walk in pride He is able to humble.

If proud Nebuchadnezzar was brought to repentance, praise, and worship of God, then those who say he is Satan (equating Lucifer with Satan) must concede that Satan will be saved. And if Satan is a man, and Christ died so that all men might be saved, how could it be that Satan will not be saved?

When hearing that God will reconcile all things to Himself, some disbelievers incredulously ask, “Will Satan be saved, too?” If we are right that Satan comes as a man, and men are meant to be saved, these disbelievers better hope Satan will be saved, if they have any hope at all, because… they are him and he is them. In the words of the prophet Nathan to adulterous, murderous King David, “Thou art the man!” (2 Samuel 12:1-7)

Man with God’s Spirit

The primary difference between the serpent and Adam and Eve was that Adam and Eve had the Spirit of God and were known as children of God. As children of God, they were appointed to rule over the earth and all that was in it. They were the duly heavenly-appointed princes, or gods, of this world. They were given full authority:

“And God blessed them. And God said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply and fill the earth, and subdue it. And have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the heavens, and all animals that move upon the earth” (Genesis 1:28 MKJV).

Man without God’s Spirit

The serpent was an intelligent being, but only a beast, that is, a man without the Spirit of God.

The apostle Paul said something interesting about beasts:

If according to man I fought with beasts in Ephesus, what advantage is to me if the dead are not raised? ‘Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!’” (1 Corinthians 15:32 MKJV)

Who was Paul talking about? Was he not speaking of men? Yet he taught the Ephesians that the saints in Christ do not fight with flesh and blood:

“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the world’s rulers, of the darkness of this age, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12 MKJV).

The battle is against the spirit that governs this world, who works through the sons of men, those who are as beasts because lacking the Spirit of God.

Ephesians 2:1-7 MKJV
(1) And He has made you alive, who were once dead in trespasses and sins,
(2) in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience;
(3) among whom we also had our way of life in times past, in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the thoughts, and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
(4) But God, Who is rich in mercy, for His great love with which He loved us
(5) (even when we were dead in sins) has made us alive together with Christ (by grace you are saved),
(6) and has raised us up together and made us sit together in the heavenlies in Christ Jesus,
(7) so that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

Men without the Spirit are dead to the spiritual realm of God’s domain and therefore can only judge after the appearance. In that sense, they are no better than beasts, compared to the living God, Who is Spirit, and Who judges by the heart. The Psalmist Asaph came to recognize this truth:

Psalms 73:1-22 MKJV
(1) A Psalm of Asaph. Truly God is good to Israel, to the pure of heart.
(2) And I, my foot had almost stumbled; my steps had nearly slipped.
(3) For I was jealous of the proud, when I saw the peace of the wicked.
(4) For there are no bands in their death; but their strength is fat.
(5) They are not in trouble like other men; neither are they plagued like other men.
(6) Therefore pride enchains them; violence covers them like a robe.
(7) Their eyes stand out with fatness; they have more than the heart could imagine.
(8) They scoff and speak in malice of cruelty; from on high they speak.
(9) They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walks through the earth.
(10) Therefore His people return here, and waters of a full cup are wrung out to them.
(11) And they say, How does God know? And is there knowledge in the Most High?
(12) Behold, these are the ungodly, who are at ease in the world; they increase in riches.
(13) Surely I have made my heart pure in vain, and washed my hands in innocence.
(14) For all the day long I have been plagued, and chastened every morning.
(15) If I say, I will speak thus; behold, I would deceive a generation of Your sons.
(16) When I thought deeply in order to understand this, it was painful for me,
(17) until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end.
(18) Surely You set them in slippery places; You cast them down into ruin.
(19) How have they been brought into grief, as in a moment! They are fully eaten up with terrors,
(20) like a dream when one awakens; so, O LORD, when You awake, You shall despise their image.
(21) For my heart was grieved and I was pricked in my reins.
(22) So foolish was I, and I did not know; I was like a beast before You.

666

Man and beast were created on the sixth day. John in the Apocalypse says that 666, the number of the beast, is the number of a man:

“Here is the wisdom. Let him having reason count the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man. And its number is six hundred and sixty-six” (Revelation 13:18 MKJV).

The Transformation from Beasthood to Godhood

It is mentioned how Satan can have men for children – “You are of the Devil your father,” Jesus said to the religious Jews who vehemently opposed Him. Satan can possess them just as God can possess men by His Spirit, who are then known as His children.

If we know the truth, we are made free, Jesus said. Let’s see what the Bible says and only what it says. Let’s see if anything in the Bible confirms the origin and identity of Satan as a man, a living creature without the Spirit of God, or if you will, a beast.

When through disobedience, a son of God falls from that glorious and privileged station Adam had in the beginning, he suffers a disconnect from God (which is what death is), the spiritual Life Source, as God warned would come. He becomes a mere man, a reasoning creature, no longer a son of God in his own right, but one in need of restoration to spiritual sonship, no matter how intelligent and educated he may be.

Praise be to God, Jesus Christ came to restore sons of God to their original state, from manhood to Godhood, from spiritually dead to spiritually living creatures, from beasts to gods:

Romans 5:17-19 MKJV
(17) For if by one man’s offense death reigned by one, much more they who receive abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by One, Jesus Christ.
(18) Therefore as by one offense sentence came on all men to condemnation, even so by the righteousness of One the free gift came to all men to justification of life.
(19) For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners [beasts], so by the obedience of One shall many be made righteous [gods].

Good and Evil in One House

Children of God and children of Satan can, and often do, come from the same household. Jesus said, “A man’s foes shall be those of his own household” (Matthew 10:36).

Didn’t both Cain and Abel come from Eve’s womb? Yet Cain was of the evil one, while Abel had faith and was counted righteous.

Weren’t Isaac and Ishmael, the persecuted and the persecutor, from the same father, Abraham? Though born in the same house, the children of the flesh oppose God’s children of the Spirit.

“But then even as he born according to flesh persecuted him born according to the Spirit, so it is also now” (Galatians 4:29 MKJV).

Did not both the child of the flesh (Esau) and the child of the spirit (Jacob) come from the same father, Isaac, and from the same mother, Rebecca? Indeed, they came forth as twins!

Romans 9:8-12 MKJV
(8) That is, not the children of the flesh are children of God; but the children of the promise are counted for a seed.
(9) For this is the word of promise: “At this time I will come and Sarah shall have a son.”
(10) And not only this, but when Rebekah also had conceived by one, by our father Isaac
(11) (for the children had not yet been born, neither had done any good or evil; but that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him Who called,)
(12) it was said to her, “The elder shall serve the younger.”

And praise God, the birth of Jacob and Esau was a prophetic allegory of how the Righteous One would prevail over the unrighteous, according to the prophecy given at the beginning – the Seed of the woman gaining victory over the seed of the serpent. As Esau was coming forth from the womb, Jacob seized him by his heel. Though Jacob was not the firstborn, one day he, by the predetermined counsel of God, would seize both the birthright and the blessing from Esau, the firstborn, the child of the flesh. The Last Adam, Christ, would retrieve that which the serpent would possess for a time after having defeated the first Adam in Eden.

Both God and Satan come by men. God came in a man and still does. He sends forth His anointed servants, His born-again children, to bear witness of Him to this world usurped by the serpent, who has ruled the earth by his children, also men.

Satan Very Close to Home

Satan is also in the house of our friends.

Of the Messiah, it says:

“He came to His own, and His own received Him not” (John 1:11 MKJV).

Prophetically, the Psalmist spoke of the Messiah: “Yea, Mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of My bread, hath lifted up his heel against Me” (Psalms 41:9 KJV).

We know these words came to pass through Judas and the Jews.

“And one shall say unto Him, What are these wounds in Thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of My friends” (Zechariah 13:6 KJV).

But Satan is even closer.

Of the evil one, John writes, “I write to you, fathers, because you have known Him Who is from the beginning. I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, and the Word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one” (1 John 2:14 MKJV).

Cain was of the one whom the young men had overcome. How had they overcome? They overcame within themselves; there is no other way – the evil one was within, of their flesh, the son of perdition, the man of sin, as with all those of this world who do not know God.

The Kingdom of God Comes from Within

Must not temptation be from within? Consider this: How did Satan approach Jesus in the wilderness? If Satan is in man, and Jesus came as a man, Satan was in Christ (in His flesh as through the first Adam) tempting Him, but while Adam succumbed, Jesus overcame by the Spirit of God, which only He could, being God, in Whom all things originate and exist, both good and evil.

Isn’t that what the Scriptures tell us?

“Let no one being tempted say, I am tempted from God. For God is not tempted by evils, and He tempts no one” (James 1:13 MKJV).

Jesus was tempted, not by God, but by the Devil:

“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit up into the wilderness, to be tempted by the Devil” (Matthew 4:1 MKJV).

But Jesus didn’t succumb or follow the course of His fellow man:

“But each one is tempted by his lusts, being drawn away and seduced by them. Then when lust has conceived, it brings forth sin. And sin, when it is fully formed, brings forth death” (James 1:14-15 MKJV).

All men have sinned, but the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of Man, overcame sin on our behalf:

“For we do not have a High Priest Who cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities, but was in all points tempted just as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us come boldly to the Throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:15-16 MKJV).

Our High Priest shared in the same flesh and blood we have, subjected to the same weaknesses.

How did God portray His Messiah to Moses and His people?

“And the LORD said to Moses, Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole. And it shall be when everyone that is bitten, when he looks upon it, he shall live” (Numbers 21:8 MKJV).

The Messiah came in the form of the Devil (the serpent), which is the form of a man!

“But even as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:14-15 MKJV).

Jesus said:

“And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto Me. This He said, signifying what death He should die” (John 12:32-33 KJV).

And it was said of Him:

“…but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Himself the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men. And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:7-8 MKJV).

God became flesh and blood to serve as our Savior, to deliver us from the power of him who held us captive in sin:

“For Christ also once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, indeed being put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the Spirit” (1 Peter 3:18 MKJV).

“For He has delivered us from the power of darkness and has translated us into the Kingdom of His dear Son” (Colossians 1:13 MKJV).

What a wonderful work, which eventually will have all men marveling at His feet in thankful worship, on that glorious Day when their eyes are opened and their deliverance is accomplished.

Man’s High Calling

If one was a son of God before creation (Job 38:4-7), why would he need to be formed into God’s image? And if God is Spirit, which is what the sons of God were before the earth was formed, why are they subjected to a physical realm? The only answer we can give at the moment is that obviously God has a plan for the children of God that requires processing in this dimension, even as He formed the nation of Israel in the iron furnace of Egypt. He will reveal His will for His creation in due time.

“For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the coming glory to be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creation waits for the manifestation of the sons of God” (Romans 8:18-19 MKJV).

Is it any wonder, then, that man is so highly regarded in Heaven? As Paul said:

“Do you not know that the saints shall judge the world? And if the world shall be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Do you not know that we shall judge angels, not to mention the things of this life?” (1 Corinthians 6:2-3 MKJV).

As David said of Christ and His brethren, the saints:

Psalms 8:3-8 MKJV
(3) When I look at Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars which You have established;
(4) what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man, that You visit him?
(5) For You have made him lack a little from God, and have crowned him with glory and honor.
(6) You made him rule over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet:
(7) all sheep and oxen, yes, and the beasts of the field;
(8) the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea, and all that pass through the paths of the seas.

Hebrews 2:8-14 MKJV
(8) “You subjected all things under his feet.” For in subjecting all things to him, He did not leave anything not subjected to him. But now we do not see all things having been subjected to him.
(9) But we see Jesus, Who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor, that He by the grace of God should taste death for all.
(10) For it became Him, for Whom are all things and by Whom are all things, in bringing many sons into glory, to perfect the Captain of their salvation through sufferings.
(11) For both He Who sanctifies and they who are sanctified are all of One, for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brothers,
(12) saying, “I will declare Your Name to My brothers; in the midst of the assembly I will sing praise to You.”
(13) And again, “I will put My trust in Him.” And again, “Behold Me and the children whom God has given Me.”
(14) Since then the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise partook of the same; that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death (that is, the Devil).

Earth - Boot Camp for God’s Sons

The saints, those in whom Christ dwells, are destined to be tried by the serpent. They are trained to do battle with him and overcome evil as part of their development into mature children of God. Paul wrote:

Ephesians 6:11-13 MKJV
(11) Put on the whole armor of God so that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the Devil.
(12) For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the world’s rulers, of the darkness of this age, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
(13) Therefore take to yourselves the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Don’t the Gentiles (unbelievers) exercise authority over all the earth in most of its aspects? Where do they get their power if not from Satan, the usurping prince of this world? Satan made no pretentious claim to ownership when he tempted the Lord with his domains, though he had “stolen” this power from Adam and Eve:

“Again, the Devil took Him up into a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him, All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me” (Matthew 4:8-9 MKJV).

The most subtle of living creatures was created in opposition to God. His subjects, unbelieving men, naturally oppose the sons of God, flesh against spirit and spirit against flesh. Men not born again from above are in the person of Satan, who, ruling over all the earth, inspires them, except where God determines otherwise. They are sparring partners, as it were, assigned for training up the sons of God.

Now our eyes are opened to see how Satan, as a man (in the beginning) and through man (now), withstands the development of man into God’s image. At the same time, his opposition facilitates the transformation of those who believe. As Joseph said to his brethren, who ripped him from his father and sold him into slavery, “You intended evil against me, but God meant it for good.”

While the gates of hell do not prevail, their opposition to the saints walking in the Spirit of Christ is as needful as fire is for cooking, an essential element in the process of tempering the sons of God.

There is no other way to accomplish the necessary processing of God’s sons. He created and appointed Satan for this very purpose. By faith we learn that indeed, all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). God has made good and evil to bring about the ultimate good.

Didn’t God send Satan to do a work with Job? And what does David, by the Spirit, say of the men of this world, Satan’s children, and the service they do for God?

Psalms 17:13-15 KJV
(13) Arise, O LORD, disappoint him, cast him down: deliver my soul from the wicked, which is Thy sword:
(14) From men which are Thy hand, O LORD, from men of the world, which have their portion in this life, and whose belly Thou fillest with Thy hid treasure: they are full of children, and leave the rest of their substance to their babes.
(15) As for me, I will behold Thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with Thy likeness.

Even as God formed Israel from a clan of 70 persons to a nation in the iron furnace of Egypt, so He created the earth, with the serpent ruling, for the very purpose of forging sons and daughters of God in a furnace of affliction.

“But the LORD has taken you and brought you out from the iron furnace, out of Egypt, to be to Him a people of inheritance, as you are today” (Deuteronomy
4:20 MKJV).

The Destiny of the Sons

God begins His work by delivering the lost soul from the rulership of the prince of this world:

“For He has delivered us from the power of darkness and has translated us into the Kingdom of His dear Son” (Colossians 1:13 MKJV).

Those who receive the Son of God and enter His Kingdom by faith go on to become sons of God, ruling with Him:

“But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His Name” (John 1:12 KJV).

The saints, after doing battle and overcoming the evil one, will be as their Master:

“Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be. But we know that when He shall be revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1 John 3:2 MKJV).

In the fullness of time, the mature sons of God, the completed Body of Christ, will free the rest of humanity from Satan by the Word of God that judges the world:

Romans 8:19-22 MKJV
(19) For the earnest expectation of the creation waits for the manifestation of the sons of God.
(20) For the creation was not willingly subjected to vanity, but because of Him Who subjected it on hope
(21) that the creation itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
(22) And we know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain together until now.

“And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, All authority is given to Me in Heaven and in earth. Therefore go and teach all nations…” (Matthew 28:18-19 MKJV).

“Do you not know that the saints shall judge the world?” (1 Corinthians 6:2 MKJV)

Discerning the Devil

1 John 3:7-10 MKJV
(7) Little children, let no one deceive you. He who does righteousness is righteous, even as that One is righteous.
(8) He who practices sin is of the Devil, for the Devil sins from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was revealed, that He might undo the works of the Devil.
(9) Everyone who has been born of God does not commit sin, because His seed remains in him, and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.
(10) In this the children of God are revealed, and the children of the Devil: everyone not practicing righteousness is not of God, also he who does not love his brother.

John does not warn of the Devil personally, so much as of the Devil’s children, telling us how to identify them.

And here, John doesn’t warn of an invisible spiritual adversary, but men - false teachers, apostles, and prophets:

1 John 4:1-6 MKJV
(1) Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but try the spirits to see if they are of God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.
(2) By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God;
(3) and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the antichrist you heard is coming, and even now is already in the world [men].

Who isn’t confessing Christ here, the false prophet or the spirit? Neither confesses Him, because they are one. Man was made in the image of God, so his flesh is one with his spirit, just as God is one. All originates in the spiritual realm, whether good or evil.

Continuing:

(4) You are of God, little children, and you have overcome them [men, plural; not the Devil, singular] because He Who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.
(5) They are of the world, therefore they speak of the world, and the world hears them.
(6) We are of God. He who knows God hears us. The one who is not of God does not hear us. From this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

“For many deceivers have entered into the world, who do not confess Jesus Christ coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the anti-Christ” (2 John 1:7 MKJV).

Just as Jesus Christ, the Truth, comes in the flesh, so does Satan, the anti-Christ come in the flesh. When Christ comes in the flesh (our flesh), He does away with Satan and his anti-Christ works within us.

“If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house, nor speak a greeting to him. For he who speaks a greeting to him is partaker of his evil deeds” (2 John 1:10-11 MKJV).

“I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to have the preeminence among them, did not receive us. Therefore if I come, I will remember his deeds which he does, ranting against us with evil words. And not content with these, neither does he himself receive the brothers. And he forbids those who would, and casts them out of the church. Beloved, do not imitate the bad, but the good. He who does good is from God, but he who does evil has not seen God” (3 John 1:9-11 MKJV).

Time and time again, Jesus and His disciples warned against men, but seldom against Satan. There are several warnings against Satan, all of which the saints can understand as Satan coming by men:

“Be sensible and vigilant, because your adversary the Devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking someone he may devour; whom firmly resist in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions in the world are being completed in your brotherhood” (1 Peter 5:8-9 MKJV).

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7 KJV).

“So that we should not be overreached by Satan, for we are not ignorant of his devices” (2 Corinthians 2:11 MKJV).

“But I fear lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve in his craftiness, so your thoughts should be corrupted from the simplicity due to Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3 MKJV).

All other and numerous instances are clearly warnings of men, some of which are: Matthew 7:15, Matthew 10:17, Matthew 16:6, Mark 12:38-40, Mark 13:5-6, John 2:24-25, 2 Corinthians 11:13-14, Philippians 3:2, Colossians 2:8, 2 Timothy 4:14-15.

If Satan, as solely a spirit independent of men, is to blame for everything, one would think multitudinous and urgent warnings would be issued against him. But these warnings of men are all against him, the serpent, for he comes as a man, and comes in his men, even as Jesus came as a man and comes in His men. And that is what John meant when he said:

“By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God; and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the antichrist you heard is coming, and even now is already in the world” (1 John 4:2-3 MKJV).

These words are not about Jesus coming in the flesh 2,000 years ago, but of Him coming in His saints ever since, even to this day. The historical event of Christ’s death and resurrection is useless to us unless we apprehend the substance of it within, here and now. Otherwise, how could the presence within of the anti-Christ be battled and overcome, without the Presence of Christ within?

And we are not merely talking about the serpent tempting Eve 6,000 years ago, but about the influence of the serpent in our lives today.

We are talking about a present reality. Those who receive the ones in whom Christ dwells by the new birth (Christ coming in the flesh) are of God, and those who don’t receive them are not of God. This is how we know the difference between one who is of God and one who is of the serpent and of this world.

The Core Might of Satan

Satan at his strongest is as one who comes as an angel of light, in the Name of the Lord, affirming Him in letter while opposing Him in spirit - as did those who came to John, whom he rebuked:

“But seeing many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, [John] said to them, O generation of vipers, who has warned you to flee from the wrath to come?” (Matthew 3:7 MKJV)

As did the religious whom Jesus rebuked:

“But He answered and said to them, Well has Isaiah prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me” (Mark 7:6 MKJV).

“Offspring of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34 MKJV).

Matthew 23:13-15 MKJV
(13) But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the Kingdom of Heaven against men. For you neither go in, nor do you allow those entering to go in.
(14) Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you devour widows’ houses, and pray at length as a pretense. Therefore you shall receive the greater condemnation.
(15) Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you compass sea and the dry land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, you make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

(See the rest of Chapter 23.)

As did Judas with a kiss:

“And he who betrayed Him gave them a sign, saying, Whomever I shall kiss, He is the one, lay hold on Him. And coming up to Jesus immediately, he said, Hail, Master! And he kissed Him” (Matthew 26:48-49 MKJV).

Men opposing the Lord in the Name of the Lord are Satan’s Special Forces.

Even the Lord’s close disciple, the apostle Peter, spoke passionately and persuasively as Satan at one point:

“Then Peter took Him and began to rebuke Him, saying, God be gracious to You, Lord! This shall never be to You. But He turned and said to Peter, Go, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you do not savor the things that are of God, but those that are of men” (Matthew 16:22-23 MKJV).

Did Peter oppose in hate or in love? In love, and that is often how the angel of light comes. Peter didn’t understand what he was doing. To him, Jesus said:

“And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has desired you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not. And when you are converted, strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:31-32 MKJV).

All unregenerate men are children of this world, which world has been under the power of Satan, its prince. From the beginning, in Eden, Satan has been prince over the men on earth.

Did not the Lord warn that a man's foes shall be those of his own household (Matthew 10:36 MKJV)? Wouldn’t their carnal love be their power more than hate? Are kisses not harder to resist than fists?

Beware of Spurious Conversions to Christ

So we have the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan, who savors the things of men because he has been, and is, man. Now we must ask this question: When we see conversions to Christ, are we witnessing men converted in spirit to the Lord Jesus Christ, or are we seeing them converted in soul to “another Jesus” by “another gospel”? Is it a godly, miraculous conversion, or is it simply proselytization? Is it a work of God or a work of men presuming to represent God, the domain of Satan? Is it wheat that God has sown or is it tares, the work of the enemy (Matthew 13:24-30)?

There are those who have received a new heart, and those who have been changed only in mind. The former are new creatures in Christ, transformed to newness of spirit; the latter are merely whitewashed, still in spiritual corruption.

Satan deals with the mind and intellect in the soulish realm. He directs his children to eat of the same Tree by which he tempted Eve - the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. But if Christ, the Tree of Life, “is in you, indeed the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness” (Romans 8:10 MKJV).

“So that if any one is in Christ, that one is a new creature; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17 MKJV).

The writer of Hebrews talks about the difference between soulish and spiritual, the distinction and division of which is brought about through the living Word of God, Jesus Christ:

“For the Word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing apart of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight, but all things are naked and opened to the eyes of Him with Whom we have to do” (Hebrews 4:12-13 MKJV).

Without His inspection, judgment, correction, and scourging, there is no spiritual transformation in Christ. There is only the accumulation of knowledge and personal introspection. So are we soulish Christians or spiritual Christians? Has Jesus Christ converted us to Himself, as He did Saul of Tarsus and so many others in the Scriptures, or have we only been converted in Christ’s Name by men, that is, by Satan? Are we real or are we counterfeit Christians?

Have we truly entered the Kingdom of Heaven by the power of the Spirit of God, or have we entered into a new pleasurable, socially-energized dimension called the “Kingdom of God” by the counterfeit godly power of men?

I have seen many spurious conversions to Christ, though the converts may be sincere and intensely, religiously dedicated, possessing new and apparently commendable traits. Of these proselytes and proselytizers, Jesus said:

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you compass sea and the dry land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, you make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves” (Matthew 23:15 MKJV).

Are these not Satan’s fruits - works of men, the paths of the destroyer (Psalms 17:4)?

The Cross Alone Tells

There is God’s Christian and there is man’s (the serpent’s) Christian. How can you tell which is which?

Have you been converted to the Tree of Life by taking up the cross of Christ, experiencing death in the spirit with the resurrection life following, or have you been converted to the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, in the intellect only?

If the former, how fortunate you are, but if in the intellect only, then you are deceived and must forsake your life and pleasure of this world. You must be freed of the shackles Satan has placed on you. You are yet in your sins and in a dangerous, though perhaps in an apparently most lovely, place.

Here is an excerpt from a note from a young man who had been snared by proselytizers preaching the deceptive false gospel, and who now attacks the saints of God. See the strong delusion God has sent this one. He thinks his oral confession and righteousness are adequate for salvation:

Victor quoted in his email to me that the reason for Jesus dying on the cross for our sins was to give us the ability to serve Him by the grace He gives us. That’s TOTALLY wrong. Again, why don’t you read Galatians??? It’s all there. Paul says it plainly. Jesus died on the cross and said ‘It is FINISHED’. Meaning He took the sins of the world on to himself and that everyone who simply believes and accepts that Jesus paid their penalty for sin, they will be forgiven and be granted eternal life. We don’t have to then TRY TO OBEY THE LAW AFTER WE’VE BEEN SAVED THROUGH GRACE. Like I said, how can grace be grace (undeserved kindness) if we have to continue to work for it???

Nothing there about becoming a new creature (2 Corinthians 5:17); nothing about establishing the Law of God (Romans 3:31); nothing about keeping God’s commandments (John 14:21); nothing about enduring to the end (Matthew 10:22); nothing about keeping one’s body under (1 Corinthians 9:27); nothing about working out one’s salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12); nothing about fleeing fornication (1 Corinthians 6:18); nothing about yielding one’s members as instruments of righteousness unto God and unto holiness (Romans 6:13,19); nothing about mortifying your members (Colossians 3:5); nothing about presenting one’s body as a living sacrifice, avoiding conformation to this world, and renewing the mind in order to prove the will of God (Romans 12:1-2); no mention of parting with friendship with the world (James 4:4); no mention of being submitted to God, cleansing one’s hands, purifying one’s heart, being afflicted, mourning and weeping, or humbling oneself (James 4:7-10); no mention of judgment beginning at the house of God (1 Peter 4:17). This twofold child of Hell condemns these as heresy - works to earn salvation. How darkened the serpent-poisoned mind!

The Lord long ago spoke to me saying that the wicked would call iniquity “grace” and despise the Law of God, condemning as false prophets those who magnify His Law (Isaiah 42:21). So it is, according to His Word to me.

2 Timothy 3:1-9 MKJV
(1) Know this also, that in the last days grievous times will be at hand.
(2) For men will be self-lovers, money-lovers, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
(3) without natural affection, unyielding, false accusers, without self-control, savage, despisers of good,
(4) traitors, reckless, puffed up, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God,
(5) having a form of godliness, but denying the power of it; even turn away from these.
(6) For of these are those who creep into houses and lead captive silly women loaded with sins, led away with different kinds of lusts,
(7) ever learning and never able to come to the full knowledge of the truth.
(8) But as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so these also resist the truth, men of corrupt mind, reprobate concerning the faith.
(9) But they shall proceed no further. For their foolishness shall be plain to all, as theirs also became.

Better to be a blatant sinner who knows he is lost, than to be persuaded by men into believing you have salvation when it is nothing more than a superficial religious experience in the flesh. There are countless millions of such deceived.

Who Are These Soul Winner Heroes?

I chanced on an old book by Faris Daniel Whitesell, Great Personal Workers. In it are listed Henry Clay Trumbull, Uncle John Vassar, D. L. Moody, R. A. Torrey, Charles M. Alexander, Will H. Houghton, H. C. Mabie, L. R. Scarborough, John Timothy Stone, Walter Wilson, and William McCarrell.

These men are presented as veritable heroes of the faith, godly men who have personally won many souls to Christ, men who were dedicated to do so at every opportunity. The book’s intent is to relate how these men won souls, so that others may adopt their methods and likewise become effective soul winners. Some had formulas and strategies, and some had discipline, including extensive memorization of Scripture.

Soul winners have many devices. But have they won souls to the Lord Jesus Christ, or were those souls converted to men’s kingdoms? Was there a genuine life change - being delivered from sin to the Kingdom of God - or were these souls made “twofold more the children of hell” than the proselytizers were? Nobody can really know but by the fruits and by revelation from God Himself.

I was led to the Lord by a man, George Lynn, a member of the Shantymen and of the Alliance Church, through the testimony of the Scriptures. George did not have the Spirit of God, and when the time came nearly two years later that I received the Spirit and shared with him that opportunity, he turned it down flatly, with great dismay because he judged me to be in delusion after having started off well through his ministry. But I knew God had given His Spirit to me, though not to George.

How can these things be? Does God use carnal believers (Satan) to win souls to Him? Are many of us true converts to Christ as “brands plucked out of the fire” (Zechariah 3:2), people spared from Satan’s grasp, even as Moses’ body was contended over and delivered from Michael’s adversary (Jude 1:9)?

Mystery Indeed!

There came a time after receiving the Spirit of God when it was revealed to me that I had been previously snared by Mystery, the harlot. George had a hand in that snaring by leading me to the Alliance Church, where Mystery ruled. It took me many years to be delivered and cleansed of her and her awesome power and ways, by God’s grace.

“And now listen to me, sons, and attend to the words of my mouth. Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, do not go astray in her paths. For she has cast down many wounded; yea, many strong men have been slain by her. Her house is the way to hell, going down to the rooms of death” (Proverbs 7:24-27 MKJV).

It was also by the instrumentality of a booklet of R. A. Torrey, “The Baptism in the Holy Spirit,” that my wife and I received the Spirit. Torrey is one of the “personal workers” in the list by Whitesell. I am thankful Torrey lived, wrote the booklet, and that it was made available to me, no matter whom he was serving.

And it was by a disobedient soul to God, Dave Loewen, a man professing faith and reveling in what he thought was revelation from God, that I received the booklet. So who can judge what or who is good or bad? All I can do is honestly speak what I know, and believe what God has revealed to me.

Are Men to Go to Heaven, or Is Heaven to Come to Men?

Satan’s (man’s) gospel says, “Let’s go up to Heaven,” as at the Tower of Babel:

“And they said, Come, let us build us a city and a tower, and its top in the heavens. And let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered upon the face of the whole earth” (Genesis 11:4 MKJV).

Isaiah 14:12-14 MKJV
(12) How you are fallen from the heavens, O shining star, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations!
(13) For you have said in your heart, I will go up to the heavens, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.
(14) I will go up above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High.

But the Lord’s Gospel says, “Let Heaven be brought down to men”:

Revelation 21:2-3 MKJV
(2) And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of Heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her Husband.
(3) And I heard a great voice out of Heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God.

“Our Father, Who is in Heaven, Hallowed be Your Name. Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven” (Matthew 6:9-10 MKJV).

Satan’s deceptive gospel says, “Accept Jesus, and you’ll go to Heaven when you die,” but the true Gospel says, “Repent for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand, and you’ll live in Heaven here and now.”

“And no one has ascended up to Heaven except He Who came down from Heaven, the Son of Man Who is in Heaven” (John 3:13 MKJV).

Ephesians 2:4-7 MKJV
(4) But God, Who is rich in mercy, for His great love with which He loved us
(5) (even when we were dead in sins) has made us alive together with Christ (by grace you are saved),
(6) and has raised us up together and made us sit together in the heavenlies in Christ Jesus,
(7) so that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

Men place their faith in the world after the grave, but God calls for entrance into His Kingdom in this world. Men place their faith in themselves in order to be fulfilled, as with Adam and Eve partaking of the Tree of Knowledge, but God fulfills those who trust Him and eat from the Tree of Life:

“But the righteousness of faith (the true Gospel) says this: ‘Do not say in your heart, Who shall ascend into Heaven?’ that is, to bring Christ down; or ‘Who shall descend into the deep?’; that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead. But what does it say? ‘The Word is near you, even in your mouth and in your heart’; that is, the Word of Faith which we proclaim; Because if you confess the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth one confesses unto salvation” (Romans 10:6-10 MKJV).

Evil to Be Overcome by Man

It is most important to know that all was anticipated and planned by God, Who purposed that by His power, man would eventually overcome evil in the process of being made complete in His image. God served notice of the fulfillment of this eventuality in the beginning, speaking to the serpent:

“And I will put enmity between you [the serpent] and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He will bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel” (Genesis 3:15 MKJV).

To fulfill the prophecy, a Seed needed to come from the woman to reverse the situation. That Seed was Jesus, the Messiah or Savior. He came, and overcoming death through death, defeated the one who had the power of death, the Devil, that old serpent. Millennia after the serpent had captured the rulership of earth and all that was therein, God came as the Son of Man and took it back.

The Seed of the woman was bruised in the heel - He died, but only in the flesh and temporarily, arising victorious to live forevermore. He bruised the serpent’s head - the serpent would never rule (or be head/prince) again, in the souls of all those who come to Christ:

“Since then the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise partook of the same; that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death (that is, the Devil), and deliver those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage” (Hebrews 2:14-15 MKJV).

“He who sins is of the Devil, for the Devil has been sinning from the beginning. To this end the Son of God was revealed, that he might destroy the works of the Devil” (1 John 3:8 HNV).

Jesus came to deal with the usurper; He came to judge him:

John 16:7-11 MKJV
(7) But I tell you the truth, it is expedient for you that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Comforter will not come to you. But if I depart, I will send Him to you.
(8) And when that One comes, He will convict the world concerning sin, and concerning righteousness, and concerning judgment.
(9) Concerning sin, because they do not believe on Me;
(10) concerning righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;
(11) concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

There were others who laid claim to the fulfillment of the prophetic promise of the Victorious Seed to come before the Real One came. Of them, Jesus said:

“Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them” (John 10:7-8 MKJV).

Those were all seeds of the serpent seeking to maintain authority over the earth. They came, beginning in the days of Nimrod and Semiramis, in pretense, laying claim to being the fulfillment of the ancient Scriptures that pertained to the coming Messiah. They came usurping and deceiving, with many names throughout our history – Baal, Zeus, Osiris, Molech, Tammuz, and many, many more.

After His resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ passed back into the heavens to receive all power and authority in Heaven and earth from that time onward:

“And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, All authority is given to Me in Heaven and in earth” (Matthew 28:18 MKJV).

By His authority men are reconciled to God, and they in turn serve to reconcile others to Him:

2 Corinthians 5:14-21 MKJV
(14) For the love of Christ constrains us, judging this, that if One died for all, then all died;
(15) and He died for all, that the living ones may live no more to themselves, but to Him Who died for them and having been raised.
(16) So as we now know no one according to flesh, but even if we have known Christ according to flesh, yet now we no longer know Him so.
(17) So that if anyone is in Christ, that one is a new creature; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
(18) And all things are of God, Who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
(19) whereas God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and putting the word of reconciliation in us.
(20) Then we are ambassadors on behalf of Christ, as God exhorting through us, we beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
(21) For He has made Him Who knew no sin, to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

Thus are the works of the Devil exposed and destroyed.

The Fallen Stars

Who are the casualties of the Devil’s works?

“And another sign was seen in the heavens. And behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads! And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and cast them onto the earth...” (Revelation 12:3-4 MKJV).

That Scripture isn’t talking about Satan and his angels being cast down, but about Satan bringing others down, those being the seed of the woman, the children of God, whose downfall happens before Satan is cast down. And then:

“And the great dragon was cast out, the old serpent called Devil, and Satan, who deceives the whole world. He was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him” (Revelation 12:9 MKJV).

Remember what the Lord said:

“And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand?” (Matthew 12:26 KJV)

Satan doesn’t go after his own (they are his) - he goes after the children of God:

“And the dragon was enraged over the woman, and went to make war with the rest of her seed, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 12:17 MKJV).

Balaam was a prophet of God. He heard from God and blessed and cursed in the power of God. When he blessed people, they were blessed, and when he cursed, the power of God went with his curses. He is the example of one who fell to Satan:

Numbers 22:4-22 MKJV
(4) And Moab said to the elders of Midian, Now this company is licking up all around us, as the ox licks up the grass of the field. And Balak the son of Zippor was king of the Moabites at that time.
(5) He sent messengers therefore to Balaam the son of Beor, to Pethor, by the river of the land of the sons of his people, to call him, saying, Behold! A people come out from Egypt. Behold! They cover the face of the earth, and they are staying across from me.
(6) Therefore, I pray you, come now and curse this people for me. For they are too mighty for me. Perhaps I shall prevail so that we may strike them, and so that I may drive them out of the land. For I know that he whom you bless is blessed, and he whom you curse is cursed.
(7) And the elders of Moab and the elders of Midian pulled up stakes with the rewards of divination in their hand. And they came to Balaam and spoke the words of Balak to him.
(8) And he said to them, Stay here tonight, and I will bring you word again, as the LORD shall speak to me. And the leaders of Moab stayed with Balaam.
(9) And God came to Balaam and said, What men are these with you?
(10) And Balaam said to God, Balak the son of Zippor, king of Moab, has sent to me, saying,
(11) Behold! A people has come out of Egypt which covers the face of the earth. Come now, curse them for me. Perhaps, I shall be able to overcome them and drive them out.
(12) And God said to Balaam, You shall not go with them. You shall not curse the people, for they are blessed.
(13) And Balaam rose up in the morning and said to the leaders of Balak, Go into your land, for the LORD refuses to let me go with you.
(14) And the leaders of Moab rose up. And they went to Balak and said, Balaam refuses to come with us.
(15) And Balak sent leaders again, more and more honorable than those.
(16) And they came to Balaam and said to him, So says Balak the son of Zippor, Please let nothing hinder you from coming to me.
(17) For I will raise you up to very great honor, and I will do whatever you say to me. Please come then and curse this people for me.
(18) And Balaam answered and said to the servants of Balak, If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the word of the LORD my God, to do less or more.
(19) But please now stay here also this night so that I may know what more the LORD will say to me.
(20) And God came to Balaam at night and said to him, If the men come to call you, rise up, go with them. But still, the word which I shall say to you, that you shall do.
(21) And Balaam rose up in the morning and saddled his ass, and went with the rulers of Moab.
(22) And God’s anger was kindled because he went. And the Angel of the LORD stood in the way as an enemy against him. And he was riding upon his ass, and his two servants with him.

Peter speaks of such fallen messengers:

2 Peter 2:9-22 HNV
(9) The Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptation and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment;
(10) but chiefly those who walk after the flesh in the lust of defilement, and despise authority. Daring, self-willed, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries;
(11) whereas angels, though greater in might and power, don’t bring a railing judgment against them before the Lord.
(12) But these, as unreasoning creatures, born natural animals to be taken and destroyed, speaking evil in matters about which they are ignorant, will in their destroying surely be destroyed,
(13) receiving the wages of unrighteousness; people who count it pleasure to revel in the daytime, spots and blemishes, reveling in their deceit while they feast with you;
(14) having eyes full of adultery, and who can’t cease from sin; enticing unsettled souls; having a heart trained in greed; children of cursing;
(15) forsaking the right way, they went astray, having followed the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of wrong-doing;
(16) but he was rebuked for his own disobedience. A mute donkey spoke with a man’s voice and stopped the madness of the prophet.
(17) These are wells without water, clouds driven by a storm; for whom the blackness of darkness has been reserved forever.
(18) For, uttering great swelling words of emptiness, they entice in the lusts of the flesh, by licentiousness, those who are indeed escaping from those who live in error;
(19) promising them liberty, while they themselves are bondservants of corruption; for a man is brought into bondage by whoever overcomes him.
(20) For if, after they have escaped the defilement of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Yeshua the Messiah, they are again entangled in it and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first.
(21) For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after knowing it, to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them.
(22) But it has happened to them according to the true proverb, “The dog turns to his own vomit again,” and “the sow that has washed to wallowing in the mire.”

We also hear of those fallen from the writer of Hebrews:

Hebrews 6:4-6 MKJV
(4) For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Spirit,
(5) and have tasted the good Word of God and the powers of the world to come,
(6) and who have fallen away; it is impossible, I say, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify the Son of God afresh to themselves and put Him to an open shame.

Who Are the Fallen Messengers?

They are those who were once messengers of God, as was Balaam. They went the way of Esau, having had the birthright, but losing it by succumbing to the flesh, despising the gift and glory of God, which resulted in God withdrawing His blessing from them. They fell to the error of Balaam, seeking earthly reward, and sought their own glory, as did the sons of Korah. They are not of those who had never known the Lord.

They were once genuine stars of heaven (the spiritual realm), called to be servants of the Lord God, preachers and ministers on earth. While two thirds of the stars remain faithful to the end, this one third succumbed through diverse trials and temptations to the prince of this world, the serpent/dragon who dragged them down with his tail.

“These are sunken rocks in your love feasts, feasting together with you; feeding themselves without fear; waterless clouds being carried about by winds; fruitless autumn trees, having died twice, having been plucked up by the roots [once alive and rooted]; wild waves of the sea foaming up their shames; wandering stars for whom blackness of darkness has been kept forever” (Jude 1:12-13 MKJV).

There are many who preach and presume to be ministers and faithful servants of God, but are not and never were chosen. They are not among those “angels” cast down to the earth, who once were servants of God.

For example, in 1987, I spoke to Dave Neufeld of Coaldale, Alberta, who professed faith and bemoaned the recent downfall of Jimmy and Tammy Bakker as ministers of God. I told him Jimmy Bakker could never fall because he never stood to begin with. Dave scoffed; he didn’t like to hear that. He was deceived - he never had the faith of Christ, either.

Many charlatans using God’s Name who have failed in their “spiritual ministries” have always been earthly, having never had anything to do with the One they professed to serve. If they appeared to fall, they didn’t fall from Heaven; they were simply exposed as the frauds they were.

As for the true twice dead (those who once knew the Lord, but quenched His Spirit), they are still able to speak the letter of the truth, though they no longer walk in it.

Turning Aside after Satan

What does it mean for those being restored to God through Christ to turn aside after Satan?

“Therefore I want the younger ones to marry, bear children, guide the house, giving no occasion to the adversary because of reproach. For some have already turned aside after Satan” (1 Timothy 5:14-15 MKJV).

Turning after Satan means to savor the things that are of men, of the flesh and of the world. Did these young widows go out to carouse, be prostitutes and drug addicts? Not necessarily. They simply went back to the common life of many in this world - the societies, institutions, activities, interests, and lifestyles that are under the power and in the spirit of the prince of this world, the serpent:

“For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah entered into the ark. And they did not know until the Flood came and took them all away. So also will be the coming of the Son of Man” (Matthew 24:38-39 MKJV).

Thus they turned aside after Satan, not considering the inestimably greater riches and glory of the Kingdom of God compared to the kingdoms of men.

Deliverance over to Satan

What about those who were unruly in the Kingdom of God, such as the fornicator in the Corinthian church who was delivered over to Satan? He was turned back over to the world, to the disciplines of men in the flesh, to the kingdom of darkness, the serpent’s kingdom. Thus, hopefully, he would learn the difference between flesh and spirit, and would come to choose the better.

1 Corinthians 5:3-5 MKJV
(3) For as being absent in body but present in spirit, I indeed have judged already as though I were present concerning him who worked out this thing;
(4) in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, with my spirit; also, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ;
(5) to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

They expelled the man from their heavenly community and let him suffer the fruits of his ways at the hand of Satan, who is invested with authority under God to deal with wayward sinners by destroying the flesh, so that their spirit might be saved. That is one of the ordained jobs of the prince of this world.

But to the called, chosen, and faithful saints of God, the prophetic promise of Genesis 3:15 given to the woman, bruising the head of the seed of the serpent, is now in process of fulfillment:

“And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen” (Romans 16:20 MKJV).

The Synagogue of Satan

“I know your works and tribulation and poverty (but you are rich), and I know the blasphemy of those saying themselves to be Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan” (Revelation 2:9 MKJV).

Who are of the synagogue of Satan, if not men, Satan’s human religious servants?

These are the ones who profess faith, and fault and persecute the true servants of the Lord, the children of God:

“But then even as he born according to flesh persecuted him born according to the Spirit, so it is also now” (Galatians 4:29 MKJV).

“Yes, My own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, who ate bread with Me, has lifted up his heel against Me” (Psalms 41:9 HNV).

“And the dragon was enraged over the woman, and went to make war with the rest of her seed, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 12:17 MKJV).

As the religious, pretentious professors of faith opposed the Jews in the rebuilding of the Temple in the day of Zerubbabel and Joshua, so they oppose the work of God today.

Ezra 4:1-4 MKJV
(1) And when the enemies of Judah and Benjamin heard that the sons of the captivity built the Temple to the LORD, the God of Israel,
(2) then they came to Zerubbabel and to the chief of the fathers, and said to them, Let us build with you, for we seek your God, even as you. And we have sacrificed to Him since the days of Esar-haddon king of Assyria, who brought us up here.
(3) But Zerubbabel, and Jeshua, and the rest of the chief of the fathers of Israel, said to them, You have nothing to do with us to build a house to our God. But we ourselves together will build to the LORD, the God of Israel, as King Cyrus the king of Persia has commanded us.
(4) Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building.

Where Did Evil Spirits Come From?

Who are all those devils we read about in the Scriptures and meet up with in our daily lives, spirits who possess and rule unregenerate men on earth? Where did these spirits or devils come from? There are at least two possibilities: They can be spirits that have never dwelled as men in physical bodies on earth (like angels), or they can be the spirits of evil men (seeds of the serpent) passed on from the earth, even as the serpent passed on and reigned on earth thereafter.

We see that unregenerate men are children of Satan, who is the serpent and prince of this world. Seeing men are serpents (cunning, subtle creatures), can it not be that evil spirits were formerly Satan’s children on earth? That would mean devils in the spiritual realm were once men, even as the serpent in Eden was a man, who was Satan.

There are no evident Scriptures we are aware of that directly argue for or against this proposition that devils were formerly men who dwelt on earth, not spirits who had never lived on earth, as in the case of angels, like Michael and Gabriel. However, I will put forth some reasoning by, and from, the Scriptures.

Consider that saints are truly one with all saints:

“And the multitude of those who believed were of one heart and one soul” (Acts 4:32 MKJV).

“Therefore since we also are surrounded with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12:1 MKJV).

Are not the saints who have passed on included in actual fellowship with those on earth? The Scriptures say so:

Hebrews 12:22-24 MKJV
(22) But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,
(23) to the general assembly and church of the first-born who are written in Heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,
(24) and to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel.

So we believers on earth are one with believers in Heaven, through the Spirit of Christ, each of us being one with Him, Who is the Head of the Body.

By the same token, the children of the Evil One are also one. Recall the evil spirit who spoke to Jesus as one, and yet as many.

Peter relates how, after His resurrection, Jesus preached to spirits in prison, the departed souls taken away in the Flood:

1 Peter 3:18-20 MKJV
(18) For Christ also once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, indeed being put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the Spirit;
(19) in which also He went and preached to the spirits in prison,
(20) to disobeying ones, when once the long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared (in which a few, that is, eight souls were saved through water).

Note Peter speaks of Jesus preaching, but not saving or redeeming, which suggests some might believe and some might not. So what of those who don’t believe? Can they not be spirits who trouble those on earth?

Is it unheard of that men passed on are still involved in the affairs of earth? Not at all. We find that, after his departure from this world, Samuel was quite aware of what was happening during King Saul’s reign, which Saul found out when he requested a witch to contact Samuel from the dead:

1 Samuel 28:15-19 MKJV
(15) And Samuel said to Saul, Why have you disturbed me, to bring me up? And Saul answered, I am grievously distressed, for the Philistines are warring against me. And God has left me and does not answer me any more, neither by prophets nor by dreams. And I have called you so that you may make known to me what I should do.
(16) And Samuel said, Why then do you ask me, since the LORD has left you and has become your enemy?
(17) And the LORD has done for Himself as He spoke by me. For the LORD has torn the kingdom out of your hand and is giving it to your neighbor, to David.
(18) Because you did not obey the voice of the LORD, nor execute his fierce wrath on Amalek, therefore the LORD has done this thing to you now.
(19) And the LORD will also deliver Israel with you into the hand of the Philistines. And tomorrow you and your sons shall be with me. The LORD also shall deliver the army of Israel into the hand of the Philistines.

As Samuel said, so it was. The next day, Saul and his sons were slain.

We have another example of men passed from this realm to the unseen world, very much involved in the affairs of this world:

“And about eight days after these sayings, He took Peter and John and James and went up into a mountain to pray. And as He prayed, the appearance of His countenance was altered, and His clothing was dazzling white. And behold, two men talked with Him, who were Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of His exodus, which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem” (Luke 9:28-31 MKJV).

Daniel informs us that those representing principalities on earth were engaged in warfare in the heavens, a warfare in which the angels participated:

“Then he said to me, Do not fear, Daniel; for from the first day that you set your heart to understand and to chasten yourself before your God, your words were heard. And I have come for your words. But the ruler of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days. But lo, Michael, one of the chief rulers, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia” (Daniel 10:12-13 MKJV).

“Then he said, Do you know why I come to you? And now I will return to fight with the ruler of Persia. And when I have gone out, lo, the ruler of Greece shall come” (Daniel 10:20 MKJV).

Heaven and earth and the citizens of each are more connected to each other than many realize. So now if we see the righteous passed on from this earth informed and involved in the affairs of this world, is it unreasonable or illogical to expect the unrighteous to also be involved? And if they are unrighteous, would they not be involved in unrighteous activities? And would not such entities be evil spirits or devils (demons)?

From Sons of Satan to Sons of God

Getting on to the subject of Christ’s victory over the Devil... after Peter’s trials, Jesus comforted him with these words, notifying him that he would not be overtaken by his flesh and by the spirit of the one ruling the flesh:

“And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has desired you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not. And when you are converted, strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:31-32 MKJV).

Peter, as a son of the first Adam and captive to the prince of this world, would be delivered from Satan’s power and influence. In due time, this salvation would be not only Peter’s privilege, but that of many.

To Saul of Tarsus, Jesus Christ appeared and said:

Acts 26:16-18 MKJV
(16) But rise and stand on your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to make you a minister and a witness both of what you saw, and in what I shall appear to you;
(17) delivering you from the people and the nations, to whom I now send you
(18) in order to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light, and from the authority of Satan to God, so that they may receive remission of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.

A crop arose from the Seed planted in the ground:

“Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it abides alone; but if it dies, it brings forth much fruit” (John 12:24 MKJV).

The religious, political, governmental, economic, military, medical, social, educational, and all formal ruling institutions of earth are the “gates of hell” (the state of the spiritually unenlightened) of which Jesus spoke to Peter, saying they would not prevail against those who received the Son of God, those comprising His Body, the Congregation of God.

“And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven to you. And whatever you may bind on earth shall occur, having been bound in Heaven, and whatever you may loose on earth shall occur, having been loosed in Heaven” (Matthew 16:18-19 MKJV).

The Two Adams

Jesus Christ has the victory. Whereas the first Adam fell to the serpent, bringing all mankind into death and captivity, the last Adam prevailed (which only God could do), restoring the way for all mankind back to Himself, out of darkness and into light, life, and liberty.

The serpent met his match in the Last Adam, the Light of the world, the Seed of the woman, as prophesied; the Seed being God Incarnate, Jesus Christ, the Messiah, as recorded in His genealogy, which goes back to Adam (Luke 3:24-38). There is sure hope in Christ for all the sons of Adam:

“And I wept very much, because no one was found worthy to open and to read the book, nor to look at it. And one of the elders said to me, Do not weep. Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the book and to loose the seven seals of it” (Revelation 5:4-5 MKJV).

The Chosen Priests of God

The nation of Israel was appointed by God through Satan to offer up the Lamb of God, just as the priests were appointed to perform the bloody sacrifices. “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” they shouted in rage, driving the Roman rulers to execute Him, all by the appointed counsel and foreknowledge of God. The Lord’s own people slew Him, their Messiah, as determined from above, using evil to work good:

Acts 2:22-24 MKJV
(22) Men, Israelites, hear these words. Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by powerful works, and wonders and miracles, which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know,
(23) this One given to you by the before-determined counsel and foreknowledge of God, you have taken and by lawless hands, crucifying Him, you put Him to death;
(24) Whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.

The execution of Christ was a good thing, and somebody had to do it. Had it not occurred, we would all be without hope. And as members of His Body, the saints are also called to death, and somebody has to perform the necessary duty, which brings only good in the end.

The Lord gave me a vision in 1975, wherein Satan slew me on an altar before the Lord, and the Lord was pleased. Seven years later, the vision was fulfilled. Art Beals, whom my wife and I considered our friend, “killed” me. This “evil” act was a step in the working out of my salvation in Christ.

From the nation of Israel, in slaying the Messiah by serving as the first Adam under the serpent’s power, came salvation to the rest of the world, according to the predetermined will of God. But Israelites were also the first to experience the salvation of God. From the Israelites came the Law and the prophets and the first believers in the Messiah, born of His Spirit. Judgment begins at the house of God and so does salvation, for salvation comes by judgment.

The Victory through Jesus Christ

And now the fullness of the Tree of Life has been made available to all mankind through Jesus Christ and His cross. Through the cross of Christ applied in the life of the believer, God delivers the one whom He chooses from the sin nature, hell, and death. Satan is overcome and the believer comes to rule with God by His Spirit.

1 John 2:13-14 MKJV
(13) I write to you, fathers, because you have known Him Who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, little children, because you have known the Father.
(14) I write to you, fathers, because you have known Him Who is from the beginning. I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, and the Word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.

Man by man, the kingdom of darkness is assailed until all men are judged and delivered from death and hell, Satan’s hallmarks of rulership through man. That’s what John is describing in the Book of Revelation:

Revelation 20:2-10 MKJV
(2) And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years.
(3) And he cast him into the abyss and shut him up and set a seal on him, that he should deceive the nations no more until the thousand years should be fulfilled. And after that he must be loosed a little time.
(4) And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the witness of Jesus and for the Word of God, and who had not worshiped the beast nor his image, nor had received his mark on their foreheads, nor in their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
(5) But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
(6) Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. The second death has no authority over these, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and will reign with Him a thousand years.
(7) And when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be loosed out of his prison.
(8) And he will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle. The number of them is as the sand of the sea.
(9) And they went up over the breadth of the earth and circled around the camp of the saints, and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of Heaven and devoured them.
(10) And the Devil who deceived them was cast into the Lake of Fire and Brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet were. And he will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

Now Are Things More Easily Understood

Where does Satan dwell and how does he rule, if not in, from, and through the cities, nations, kingdoms, and empires of men? To those saints at Pergamos, Jesus said:

“I know your works, and where you live, even where Satan’s seat is. And you hold fast My Name and have not denied My faith, even in those days in which Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwells” (Revelation 2:13 MKJV).

Satan is the ruler of the flesh. He was a man; he usurped men, children of God - Eve and Adam - and gained power to come into, and rule over, all men from the heavens, the spiritual realm.

That’s why we find Satan among the sons of God in heaven during Job’s time:

“And a day came when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD. And Satan also came among them” (Job 1:6 MKJV).

Satan is a dignitary, a usurper and adversary to be sure, but a divinely purposed one, who has power and exercises it in the heavens by God’s authority. God rules over all, sending His messengers of good and evil as needed, to accomplish His good will.

Satan, the evil one, comes in the flesh. Here was a flesh and blood man inspired to do evil as a child of the evil one.

“Not as Cain who was of the evil one, and killed his brother. And for what did he kill him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s things were righteous” (1 John 3:12 MKJV).

Jesus addressed Satan’s children, saying to his religious gainsayers - the Pharisees, Sadducees, and scribes:

“You are of the Devil as father, and the lusts of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and did not abide in the truth because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own, for he is a liar and the father of it” (John 8:44 MKJV).

The serpent came lying to Eve. He was a beast, a flesh and blood human creature. The evil one comes in the flesh. And God comes to defeat the enemy, by coming in the flesh:

“By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God; and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the antichrist you heard is coming, and even now is already in the world” (1 John 4:2-3 MKJV).

And how did Satan come to rob Job? Did he not use men?

“And the LORD said to Satan, Behold, all that he has is in your power. Only do not lay your hand upon him. And Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD” (Job 1:12 MKJV). ...

“And there came a messenger to Job and said, The oxen were plowing, and the asses feeding beside them. And the Sabeans fell on and took them away. Yea, they have killed the servants with the edge of the sword. And I only have escaped alone to tell you” (Job 1:14-15 MKJV).

“While he was still speaking, there also came another and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands and swooped down upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and have killed the servants with the edge of the sword. And I only have escaped alone to tell you” (Job 1:17 MKJV).

Satan moved flesh and blood to do his work against Job. Of course, he also had supernatural powers, for he used the wind to destroy Job’s children and sent fire from the sky to destroy Job’s sheep and servants. Satan does have great supernatural power.

And he also comes with signs and lying wonders, as a man:

“Let not anyone deceive you by any means. For that Day shall not come unless there first comes a falling away, and the man of sin shall be revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, setting himself forth, that he is God” (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 MKJV).

“For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works” (2 Corinthians 11:13-15 EMTV).

Satan does not rule forever:

Luke 10:17-20 MKJV
(17) And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the demons are subject to us through Your Name.
(18) And He said to them, I saw Satan fall from Heaven like lightning.
(19) Behold, I give to you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the authority of the enemy. And nothing shall by any means hurt you.
(20) Yet do not rejoice in this, that the evil spirits are subject to you, rather rejoice because your names are written in Heaven.

Jesus saw the transfer of power and authority being set in motion from the usurper (Satan) back to the first son of God, Adam, whose original right and destiny it was to rule the earth. This transfer was by the power of the Last Adam, Who came to reconcile all things to Himself.

Satan falls from Heaven every time someone is delivered from the bondage and power of the flesh to the rulership of God through the revelation of Jesus Christ, as happened to Zacchaeus:

“And Zaccheus stood and said to the Lord, Behold, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor. And in anything I accused anyone falsely, I restore it fourfold. And Jesus said to him, This day salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:8-10 MKJV).

Notes of Interest and Clarification

  • The whole process of man’s salvation is an internal matter. The Kingdom of Heaven is within. So are Hell, Mystery the harlot, the beast, the false prophet, and the man of sin. These are also manifest externally.

  • Don’t go blaming the Devil for your circumstances or for your sins. Job did neither of those things. As one fearing God and eschewing evil, neither will you. Job knew Who was in full control. He knew full well where the buck stopped.

  • How does Satan speak? He speaks within because that is where he is - in you. He comes with such things as doubts, suspicions, lies, misconceptions, silly and evil imaginations, resentment, bitterness, self-pity, fears, debate, double-mindedness, envy, proud thoughts, jealousy, lust, hatred, threats, temptations, and urgings to rush or to act without preparation or knowledge. The works of the flesh are the works of the Devil.

  • 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 MKJV
    (9) Do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the Kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor abusers, nor homosexuals,
    (10) nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the Kingdom of God.

    Galatians 5:16-26 MKJV
    (16) I say, then, Walk in the Spirit and you shall not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.
    (17) For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh. And these are contrary to one another; lest whatever you may will, these things you do.
    (18) But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under Law.
    (19) Now the works of the flesh are clearly revealed, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lustfulness,
    (20) idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, fightings, jealousies, angers, rivalries, divisions, heresies,
    (21) envyings, murders, drunkennesses, revelings, and things like these; of which I tell you before, as I also said before, that they who do such things shall not inherit the Kingdom of God.
    (22) But the fruit of the Spirit is: love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith,
    (23) meekness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
    (24) But those belonging to Christ have crucified the flesh with its passions and lusts.
    (25) If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
    (26) Let us not become glory-seeking, provoking one another, envying one another.

    Ephesians 5:3-5 MKJV
    (3) For let fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness not be once named among you, as becomes saints,
    (4) neither baseness, foolish talking, jesting, which are not becoming, but rather giving of thanks.
    (5) For you know this, that no fornicator, or unclean person, or covetous one (who is an idolater), has any inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and of God.

    Colossians 3:8-11 MKJV
    (8) But now also put off all these things: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, shameful speech out of your mouth.
    (9) Do not lie to one another, having put off the old man with his deeds
    (10) and having put on the new, having been renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him Who created him,
    (11) where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, foreigner, Scythian, slave or freeman, but Christ is all things in all.

    1 Timothy 1:8-11 MKJV
    (8) But we know that the Law is good if a man uses it lawfully,
    (9) knowing this, that the Law is not made for a righteous one, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers,
    (10) for fornicators, for homosexuals, for slave-traders, for liars, for perjurers, and anything else that is contrary to sound doctrine,
    (11) according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to my trust.

    “But the fearful, and the unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, will have their part in the Lake burning with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8 MKJV).

    “But outside are the dogs, and the sorcerers, and the fornicators, and the murderers, and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and makes a lie” (Revelation 22:15 MKJV).

    Satan comes through men, usually religious ones, who cling to their kingdoms and doctrines to serve themselves. They are a bunch of usurpers, members in particular of his body and Satan’s bride, Mystery, Babylon (Confusion) the Great, the Mother of harlots. She is false religion, which is self-(Satan-)centered and self-(Satan-)serving, the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil:

    “And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasing to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make wise, she took of its fruit, and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate” (Genesis 3:6 MKJV).

    And we died.

I have listed above the works and ways of Satan, who is flesh in your spirit and spirit in your flesh, who is man, who is you. Take responsibility, confess, repent, and do right. Seek God’s face and overcome the enemy by His grace and power.

The Enemy Within

You have heard it said, “We are our own worst enemies.” Indeed, as the cartoonist Walt Kelly of Pogo wrote about half a century ago, “We have met the enemy, and he is us.”

But now the time has come for full deliverance from the hand of the man of sin within, as well as without, the son of perdition, the usurper, beast, Devil, dragon, serpent, tempter, adversary, deceiver, destroyer, liar, murderer, Abaddon/Apollyon, the provider of earthly pleasures to divert us from honoring God. He is the man, the spiritual combination of Adam and the serpent, resulting from the fall. This is the day that the Seed of Eve does away with the prince of this world, our internal and external adversary, once and for all.

In the beginning, the man blamed the woman, and the woman blamed the serpent, but now we all need to take responsibility. We have been the Devil. We can no longer say that the Devil made us do it. We have been the sinners, the Lawbreakers... the Devil. We did it to ourselves!

In the beginning, the serpent made all on earth his, one with him. Now God takes it all back, restoring everything to Himself, including the serpent and mankind.

This is the Day of the Lord, the Day of deliverance for the earth and all that is therein. Now it will be the reunion of man with God. Man will be restored and made complete in His image. Satan is finished. We will be sinners no more. Indeed, we will establish the Law of God, and peace and righteousness will be gloriously established forever.

1 Corinthians 15:22-28 MKJV
(22) For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all will be made alive.
(23) But each in his own order: Christ the first-fruit, and afterward they who are Christ's at His coming;
(24) then is the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God, even the Father; when He makes to cease all rule and all authority and power.
(25) for it is right for Him to reign until He has put all the enemies under His feet.
(26) The last enemy made to cease is death.
(27) For He put all things under His feet. But when He says that all things have been put under His feet, it is plain that it excepts Him Who has put all things under Him.
(28) But when all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also will be subject to Him Who has subjected all things to Him, so that God may be all things in all.

For more about The Restitution of All Things, read:

Satan's Redemption
The Great Promise of the Lake of Fire and the Second Death
The True, Scriptural Meanings of “Forever,” “Everlasting,” and “Hell”

And more about The Purpose of Evil.

Victor Hafichuk
Paul Cohen

 

A practical example of Satan’s deception with men and the wages they receive in his service:

Satan’s Fallen Soldiers: Devious Devices of the Destroyer Discussed 
[PDF Version]

Not only do Satan’s servants bring destruction to others, they suffer it themselves as the victims of their own deception. While Christ gives a deposit of pure gold, Satan gives a “UOI” (not an IOU), keeping his subjects under the yoke and bondage of serving themselves in his kingdom of darkness. Light solves that problem, when it is shone by God in Christ, and walked in by men. That is the Kingdom of God on earth.

 

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