Category: Satan

  First John 2:18 speaks of the Antichrist: “Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour.” The specific term antichrist is used seven times in Scripture, twice here in 1 John 2:18 and also in 1 John 2:22; 4:3; and twice 2 John 7. So, what is this Antichrist that the apostle John refers to?

The meaning of the term antichrist is simply “against Christ.” As the apostle John records in First and Second John, an antichrist denies the Father and the Son (1 John 2:22), does not acknowledge Jesus (1 John 4:3), and denies that Jesus came in the flesh (2 John 1:7). There have been many “antichrists,” as 1 John 2:18 states. But there is also coming the Antichrist.

Most Bible prophecy/eschatology experts believe the Antichrist will be the ultimate embodiment of what it means to be against Christ. In the end times/last hour, a man will arise to oppose Christ and His followers more than anyone else in history. Likely claiming to be the true Messiah, the Antichrist will seek world domination and will attempt to destroy all followers of Jesus Christ and the nation of Israel.

Other biblical references to the Antichrist include the following:

The imposing, boastful king of Daniel 7 who oppresses the Jews and tries to “change the set times and the laws” (verse 25).

The leader who establishes a 7-year covenant with Israel and then breaks it in Daniel 9.

The king who sets up the abomination of desolation in Mark 13:14 (cf. Daniel 9:27).

The man of lawlessness in 2 Thessalonians 2:1–12.

The rider on a white horse (representing his claim to be a man of peace) in Revelation 6:2.

The first beast—the one from the sea—in Revelation 13. This beast receives power from the dragon (Satan) and speaks “proud words and blasphemies” (verse 5) and wages war against the saints (verse 7).

Thankfully, the Antichrist/beast, along with his false prophet, will be thrown into the lake of fire, where they will spend all eternity in torment (Revelation 19:20; 20:10).

What is the Antichrist? In summary, the Antichrist is the end-times false messiah who seeks, and likely achieves, world domination so that he can destroy Israel and all followers of Jesus Christ.

There is much speculation about the identity of the Antichrist. Some of the more popular targets are Vladimir Putin, Prince William, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and Pope Francis I. In the United States, former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, and current President Barack Obama, are the most frequent candidates. So, who is the Antichrist, and how will we recognize him?

The Bible really does not say anything specific about where the Antichrist will come from. Many Bible scholars speculate that he will come from a confederacy of ten nations and/or a reborn Roman empire (Daniel 7:24-25; Revelation 17:7). Others see him as having to be a Jew in order to claim to be the Messiah. It is all just speculation since the Bible does not specifically say where the Antichrist will come from or what race he will be. One day, the Antichrist will be revealed. Second Thessalonians 2:3-4 tells us how we will recognize the Antichrist: “Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.”

It is likely that most people who are alive when the Antichrist is revealed will be very surprised at his identity. The Antichrist may or may not be alive today. Martin Luther was convinced that the pope in his time was the Antichrist. During the 1940’s, many believed Adolph Hitler was the Antichrist. Others who have lived in the past few hundred years have been equally sure as to the identity of the Antichrist. So far, they have all been incorrect. We should put the speculations behind us and focus on what the Bible actually says about the Antichrist. Revelation 13:5-8 declares, “The beast was given a mouth to utter proud words and blasphemies and to exercise his authority for forty-two months. He opened his mouth to blaspheme God, and to slander his name and his dwelling place and those who live in heaven. He was given power to make war against the saints and to conquer them. And he was given authority over every tribe, people, language and nation. All inhabitants of the earth will worship the beast—all whose names have not been written in the book of life belonging to the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world.”

While there is no verse that says a “third of the angels fell from heaven,” some verses, when put together, lead us to that conclusion. Sometime after their creation, and most certainly after the sixth day when everything was declared “very good” (Genesis 1:31), Satan rebelled and was cast out of heaven. “How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations!” (Isaiah 14:12). When Lucifer sinned, Jesus said, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven” (Luke 10:18), and in the book of the Revelation Satan is seen as “a star that had fallen from the sky to the earth” (Revelation 9:1).

We are also told that one third of an “innumerable company of angels” (Hebrews 12:22) chose to rebel with him. John saw this great wonder in heaven, “…an enormous red dragon…His tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth…the great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him” (Revelation 12:3-9).

Since Satan is referred to as a star which fell or was cast down to earth, and Revelation 12:4 says a third of the stars were cast out with him, then the conclusion is that the stars in Revelation 12 refer to fallen angels, fully one third of the heavenly host. If the one-third number is in fact accurate, what assurance that is! Two thirds of the angels are still on God’s side, and for followers of Christ, they are on our side as well.

Yes, the serpent in Genesis chapter 3 was Satan. Satan was either appearing as a serpent, possessing the serpent, or deceiving Adam and Eve into believing that it was the serpent who was talking to them. Serpents / snakes do not possess the ability to speak. Revelation 12:9 and 20:2 both describe Satan as a serpent. “He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years” (Revelation 20:2). “The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him” (Revelation 12:9).

While the Bible is not clear as to whether or not the serpent stood up or walked before the curse, it appears likely that like other reptiles it probably did walk on four legs. That would seem to be the best explanation of Genesis 3:14, “So the LORD God said to the serpent, ‘Because you have done this, cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life.’” The fact that the serpent was cursed to crawl on his belly and eat the dust of the earth forever is also a way of indicating that the serpent would be forever despised and looked upon as a vile and despicable creature and an object of scorn and contempt. Why did God curse the serpent when He knew that it was actually Satan who had led Adam and Eve into sin? The fate of the serpent is an illustration. The curse of the serpent will one day be the fate of Satan himself (Revelation 20:10; Ezekiel 28:18-19).

A common tactic of Satan is to imitate or counterfeit the things of God in order  to make himself appear to be like God. What is commonly referred to as the  “unholy trinity,” described vividly in Revelation 12 and 13, is no exception.  The Holy Trinity consists of God the Father, the Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy  Spirit. Their counterparts in the unholy trinity are Satan, the Antichrist,  and the False Prophet. While the Holy Trinity  is characterized by infinite truth, love, and goodness, the unholy trinity  portrays the diametrically opposite traits of deception, hatred, and  unadulterated evil.

Revelation 12 and 13 contain prophetic passages that  describe some of the main events and the figures involved during the second half  of the seven-year Tribulation period. Although many Bible passages allude to  Satan in various forms, such as a serpent or an angel of light, he is described  in Revelation  12:3 as a “great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven  crowns upon his heads” (Revelation  12:3). The color red indicates his vicious and homicidal personality. The  seven heads symbolize seven evil kingdoms that Satan has empowered and used  throughout history to attempt to prevent God’s ultimate plan from coming to  fruition. Five of the kingdoms had already come and gone—Egypt, Assyria,  Babylon, Medo-Persia, and Greece.

All these kingdoms severely oppressed  and persecuted the Hebrews, killing many of them. Satan’s intent was to prevent  the birth of Christ (Revelation  12:4). The sixth kingdom, Rome, was still in existence during the writing of  this prophecy. Under Roman rule, King Herod murdered Hebrew babies around the  time of Christ’s birth and Pontius Pilate ultimately authorized the crucifixion  of Jesus. The seventh kingdom, which is more fierce and cruel than the others,  will be the final world kingdom that the Antichrist forms during the end times.  These kingdoms were also prophesied in Daniel, chapters 2 and 7. The seven  crowns represent universal rule, and ten horns represent complete world power or  authority.

Revelation 12 indicates many important facts about Satan.  Satan and one-third of the angels were cast out of heaven during a rebellion  before the world began (Revelation  12:4). The Archangel Michael and the other angels will make war with Satan  and his demons, and Satan will be excluded from heaven forever (Revelation 12:7-9). In  his attempt to prevent God’s fulfillment of His earthly kingdom, Satan will  attempt to annihilate the Jews, but God will supernaturally protect a remnant of  the Jews in a location outside of Israel for the last 42 months of the  Tribulation (Revelation12: 6,13-17; Matthew  24:15-21).

The second member of the unholy trinity is the Beast or  Antichrist described in Revelation 13 and Daniel 7. The beast comes out of the  sea, which typically in the Bible refers to the Gentile nations. He also has  seven heads and ten horns, indicating his connection to and indwelling by Satan.  The ten horns indicate ten seats of world government that will provide power to  the Antichrist, three of which will be totally yielded to or taken over by the  Antichrist (Daniel 7:8).  The number ten also indicates completion or totality, in other words, a  one-world government. The one-world government will be blasphemous, denying the  true God. The final kingdom will possess traits in common with the former “beast  kingdoms” of Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and particularly Rome (Revelation13: 2; Daniel 7:7, 23). Revelation  13:3 seems to indicate that the Antichrist will be mortally wounded about  halfway through the Tribulation, but Satan will miraculously heal his wound. (Revelation 13:3, 17:8-14). After this wondrous event, the world will be  totally enthralled by the Antichrist. They will worship Satan and the Antichrist  himself (Revelation  13:4-5). The Antichrist becomes emboldened and, dispensing with all  pretenses of being a peaceful ruler, he openly blasphemes God, breaks his peace  treaty with the Jews, attacks believers and the Jews, and desecrates the rebuilt  Jewish temple, setting himself up as the one to be worshipped (Revelation 13:4-7, Matthew 24:15.) This  particular event has been called the Abomination of Desolation.

The  final personage of the unholy trinity is the False Prophet, described in Revelation 13:11-18. This second beast comes out of the  earth, not the sea, possibly indicating that he will be an apostate Jew coming  from Israel. Although he presents himself as a meek, mild and benevolent person,  the horns indicate that he will have power. Jesus expressly warned believers to  watch out for false prophets that may look innocent but actually can be very  destructive (Matthew  7:15). The False Prophet speaks like a dragon, meaning that he will speak  persuasively and deceptively to turn humans away from God and promote the  worship of the Antichrist and Satan (Revelation 13:11-12). The False Prophet is capable of  producing great signs and wonders, including coming forth fire from heaven (Revelation  13:13). He sets up an image of the Antichrist for worship, gives life to the  image, demands the worship of the image from all people, and executes those who  refuse to worship the image (Revelation 13:14-15). Revelation  20:4 indicates that the executions will occur by the guillotine.

The  False Prophet will also compel each person to receive a permanent mark, tattoo,  or brand, just as slaves did in John’s day, to show total devotion to the  Antichrist and renunciation of God. Only those who receive the mark will be  permitted to engage in commerce. Acceptance of the mark means eternal death (Revelation  14:10). The Bible makes clear that humans will fully understand that by  accepting the mark, they are not only accepting an economic system but also a  worship system that rejects Jesus Christ. Revelation  13:18 reveals the number of the Beast—666. No one knows precisely what this  means. Some believe that the Antichrist’s first, middle, and last names will  have six letters each. Some believe that the designation refers to a computer  chip, since some computer programs start with 666.

Satan is the  anti-God, the Beast is the anti-Christ, and the False Prophet is the  anti-spirit. This unholy trinity will persecute believers and deceive many  others, resulting in their eternal death. But God’s kingdom will prevail. Daniel 7:21-22 states, “I  was watching; and the same horn was making war against the saints, and  prevailing against them, until the Ancient of Days came, and a judgment was made  in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came for the saints to  possess the kingdom.”

There is no verse or passage in the Bible that says, “Lucifer is Satan,” but an examination of several passages reveals that Lucifer can be none other than Satan. The fall of Lucifer described in Isaiah 14:12 is likely the same that Jesus referred to in Luke 10:18: “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.” A similar fall is depicted in Ezekiel 28.

Isaiah 14:12-18 describes the fall from heaven of one called “Lucifer” in the King James Version and the “morning star, son of the dawn” in the NIV. Other Bible versions call him “Day Star,” “shining star,” and “the bright morning star.” These variations are due to differences of opinion about how to translate the Hebrew word helel. Regardless, the description of the one referred to shows us it can be none other than Satan. We know from Jesus’ own words in Luke 10 that Satan fell from heaven. So, when Isaiah refers to Lucifer or helel being cast down to earth (Isaiah 14:12), it can be none other than Satan. The reason for his fall is found in verses 13 and 14: “You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’” This has always been Satan’s desire – to be God, and it is the very temptation he used in the Garden of Eden to get Eve to disobey God: “You shall be as God” (Genesis 3:5).

Ezekiel 28 is another passage thought to refer to Lucifer/Satan. Although it begins with Ezekiel being commanded by God to “take up a lament concerning the king of Tyre” (v. 12), an evil idolatrous king, it soon becomes clear that the passage is referring as well to the power behind that king—Satan. Verse 13 says he was “in Eden, the garden of God.” Clearly, the king of Tyre was never in Eden. Verse 14 says, “You were anointed as a guardian cherub, for so I ordained you.” Apparently, Lucifer/Satan had a position of guardian angel in heaven “among the fiery stones,” thought to be the shining precious jewels that are seen in other descriptions of heaven (Exodus 24:10; Revelation 21:18-21). Since the king of Tyre was never in heaven, either, this can only be describing Lucifer. The rest of the passage describes the reason he was cast out of heaven. Because of his beauty, his heart became proud and his wisdom was corrupted (v. 17). Pride in his perfection, wisdom and beauty (v. 12) became the source of his downfall, and God threw him to the earth (v. 17). This was witnessed by the Lord Jesus in heaven before His incarnation (Luke 10:18).

To summarize, the Hebrew word helel is translated “Lucifer.” He was cast out of heaven for his sin of pride and his desire to be God. Jesus referred to seeing Satan being cast out of heaven. Therefore, we can conclude that Lucifer and Satan are one and the same.

No, Jesus and Satan are not brothers. Jesus is God and Satan is one of His  creations. Not only are Jesus and Satan not brothers, they are as different as  night is from day. Jesus is God incarnate—eternal, all knowing and all powerful  while Satan is a fallen angel that was created by God for God’s purposes. The  teaching that Jesus and Satan are “spirit brothers” is one of the many false  teachings of the Mormons (Latter Day Saints), and to  some degree also the Jehovah’s Witnesses.  Both of these groups are properly labeled as cults because they deny essential Christian  doctrine. While they use Christian terms such as Jesus, God and salvation, they  have heretical views and teachings on the most basic and essential Christian  doctrines. (Please note that most Mormons today will vehemently deny that they  believe Jesus and Satan are brothers. However, this teaching was most definitely  a belief of the early Mormons).

The teaching that Jesus and Satan are  “spirit brothers” is born out of the Mormons’ misunderstanding and distortion of  Scripture as well as some of the extra-biblical teachings they consider to be  authoritative. Simply put there is no way you can read the Bible using any type  of sound hermeneutical principles and come away with the idea that Jesus and  Satan are “spiritual brothers.” The Scriptures are very clear that Jesus is  fully God, not some type of lesser god as the Mormons or other cults believe.  The Scriptures are also very clear that God is transcendent above His creation  which simply means that there is no comparison between Christ the Creator and  Satan His creation.

Mormons believe that Jesus Christ was the first  “spirit child” born to God the Heavenly Father with one of his many wives.  Instead of acknowledging Jesus as the one true God, they believe He  became God, just as they will one day become gods. According to Mormon  doctrine, as the first of the “spirit children” of God, Jesus had preeminence  over Satan or Lucifer who was the second “son of God” and the “spirit brother”  of Jesus. It is ironic that they will use Colossians  1:15 as one of their “proof texts” because it says that: “He is the image of  the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.” Yet they ignore verse 16  where we see that “By Him (Christ) all things were created that are in heaven  and that are on earth. Visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or  principalities or powers. ALL THINGS were created through Him and for Him.” All  things—thrones, dominions, principalities or powers—include Satan and his  demons.

In order to believe that Satan and Jesus are “spiritual  brothers” one must deny the clear teaching of Scripture. Scripture is very clear  that it was Jesus Christ who created all things and that as the second person of  the triune Godhead Christ is fully and uniquely God. Jesus claimed to be God in  many passages of Scripture. In John 10:30 Jesus said, “I am the Father are one.” Jesus was not claiming to be another  lesser God. He was declaring that He was fully God. In John 1:1-5 it is clear that Jesus was not a created being  and that He Himself created all things. “All things were made through Him, and  without Him nothing was made that was made” (John 1:3). How  much clearer can it get? “All things” means what it says, and it includes Satan  who as an angel was himself a created being just like the other angels and  demons are. Scripture reveals Satan to be a fallen angel who rebelled against  God and Jesus as being God. The only relationship that exists between Satan and  Jesus is that of Creator and creation, of the righteous Judge Jesus Christ and  the sinful created being, Satan.

Like the Mormons, the Jehovah  Witnesses also teach that Jesus and Satan are spiritual brothers. While some  Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses might sometimes try to sidestep this teaching  because it is so antithetical to what the Bible actually says, it is  nevertheless what these organizations believe and is part of their official  doctrine.

Mormons believe that not only were Jesus and Lucifer “spirit  children of Elohim,” but that also humans are spiritual children as well. In  other words they believe that “God, angels, and men are all of the same species,  one race, one great family.” This is why they believe that they themselves will  one day become as much of a God as Jesus or even God the Father. Rather than  seeing the clear distinction in Scripture between God and His creation, they  believe that one day they will be a God themselves. Of course this is the same  old lie Satan has been telling us since the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:15). Apparently  the desire to usurp the throne of God is endemic in the hearts of men.

In Matthew  16:15 Jesus asked the important question: “But who do you say that I am?”  This is a question that is essential to salvation and one that the Mormons and  Jehovah Witnesses get wrong. Their answer that Jesus is the spirit brother of  Satan is the wrong one. Jesus is God the Son, and in Him the fullness of the  Godhead dwelt bodily (Colossians  2:9). He created Satan and one day He will cast Satan into the lake of fire  as the just punishment for his rebellion against God. Sadly on that Day of  Judgment those who fall for Satan’s lies will also be cast into the lake of fire  with Satan and His demons. The god of the Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses is not  the God who revealed Himself in Scripture. Unless they repent and come to  understand and worship the one true God, they have no hope of salvation.

Satan was an angel created by God who turned against God’s authority (Isaiah 14:13) and became  the head of a kingdom of evil spirits called demons, his “angels” (Matthew 25:41). His power  both in the heavenly realm and on earth is great and should not be  underestimated. However, while Satan and his forces are formidable enemies,  Jesus Christ crushed Satan’s power, fulfilling the prophecy of Genesis 3:15. The cross of  Christ won the victory (John 12:31).   “The prince of this world now stands condemned” (John 16:11),  and Jesus will one day destroy Satan’s power completely and purify creation (2 Peter  3:10).

Satan’s power in the heavenly realm / spirit  world:
Satan’s power has repute in the spiritual realm (Jude 9), where he has access to the presence of God (Job 1:6). The book of Job  provides insight into the relationship between God and Satan. In Job 1:6-12, Satan stands before God and reports that he  has been “walking up and down” on the earth (v. 7). God asks Satan if he has  considered godly Job, and Satan immediately accuses Job of insincerity—he only  loves God for the blessings God gives. “Stretch out your hand,” Satan says, “and  strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face” (v. 11).  God grants Satan permission to affect Job’s possessions and family, but not his  person, and Satan leaves. (The rest of the book is from Job’s perspective,  providing an example of how to deal with suffering.)

This is an  important passage because it shows Satan’s place in the spiritual realm. He is  able to accuse God’s people in His very presence, and Jude 9 shows that even Michael the archangel needs the  Lord’s help in overcoming him. However, Satan is obviously restrained from  enacting his full fury; he is still a created being under God, and his power is  limited.

Satan’s power on the earth:
Job 1 also  reveals that Satan does enact evil and cause direct harm on the earth. The most  well-known and important of his actions on earth occurred in the Garden of Eden.  Genesis 3 tells of Satan’s temptation of Eve, the “mother of all the living” (v.  20), and her subsequent first sin. It was this act, and that of Eve’s husband  Adam, that brought sin into the world, and it is the reason all humankind must  be redeemed from sin in order to be with God.

One day, Jesus met a woman  who had been “crippled by a spirit for eighteen years” (Luke 13:11). Jesus attributes the infirmity to Satan, who  had kept her “bound” (verse 16). Satan’s power was real, but it was easily  overcome by our Lord: “he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened  up and praised God” (v. 13). Jesus’ miracle was a clear demonstration of His  authority over Satan.

Since his instigation of evil on earth, Satan has  been named as the “prince,” “god” or “ruler” of this world (John 14:30; cf. John 12:3116:11; 1 Corinthians 2:6, 8; 2  Corinthians 4:3-4; Ephesians  2:2; Colossians  1:13). He is the enemy of God and truth (Matthew  13:24-30; 2  Thessalonians 2:9-12), and he does everything he can to tempt individuals  (Genesis 3; Luke 22:31Matthew 2:3; 1 Timothy 3:7). and larger  groups of people (1  Thessalonians 3:5; Revelation  2:10). He “leads the whole world astray” (Revelation  12:9). Satan accomplishes this by various means, including appealing to  man’s pride (1 Timothy  3:6; 1  Corinthians 4:6), interfering with the transmission of truth (Matthew 13:18-22, 38-39)  and placing false believers within the church (1 Timothy  4:1-2; 2 Timothy  3:1-9; Revelation  2:9; 3:9). In  John 8:44, Jesus says that  Satan “is a liar and the father of it.”

God still grants Satan some  authority in this world, which means that his power is not yet completely  broken—except in one area: his power of death. Hebrews  2:14-15 says that Jesus came as a man to die in order to “destroy him who  holds the power of death – that is, the devil,” a power Satan had held “from the  beginning” (John 8:44).  The salvation Jesus provides has released us from Satan’s stranglehold. Death  has lost its sting (1  Corinthians 15:55).

Satan’s power – the  conclusion:
The Bible says that “the whole world is under the  control of the evil one” (1 John  5:19), and we must “be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil  prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). Yet Christians  have a great hope, for Jesus Christ (John 16:33)  and our faith in Him (1 John 5:4)  have overcome Satan’s evil. “The one who is in you is greater than the one who  is in the world” (1 John  4:4).

 People’s beliefs concerning Satan range from the silly to the  abstract—from a little red guy with horns who sits on your shoulder urging you  to sin, to an expression used to describe the personification of evil. The  Bible, however, gives us a clear portrait of who Satan is and how he affects our  lives. Put simply, the Bible defines Satan as an angelic being who fell from his  position in heaven due to sin and is now completely opposed to God, doing all in  his power to thwart God’s purposes.

Satan was created as a holy angel.  Isaiah 14:12 possibly gives  Satan’s pre-fall name as Lucifer. Ezekiel  28:12-14 describes Satan as having been created a cherubim, apparently the  highest created angel. He became arrogant in his beauty and status and decided  he wanted to sit on a throne above that of God (Isaiah  14:13-14; Ezekiel  28:15; 1 Timothy  3:6). Satan’s pride led to his fall. Notice the many “I will” statements in  Isaiah  14:12-15. Because of his sin, God barred Satan from heaven.

Satan  became the ruler of this world and the prince of the power of the air (John 12:31; 2  Corinthians 4:4; Ephesians  2:2). He is an accuser (Revelation  12:10), a tempter (Matthew 4:31  Thessalonians 3:5), and a deceiver (Genesis 3; 2  Corinthians 4:4; Revelation  20:3). His very name means “adversary” or “one who opposes.” Another of his  titles, the devil, means “slanderer.”

Even though he was cast out of  heaven, he still seeks to elevate his throne above God. He counterfeits all that  God does, hoping to gain the worship of the world and encourage opposition to  God’s kingdom. Satan is the ultimate source behind every false cult and world  religion. Satan will do anything and everything in his power to oppose God and  those who follow God. However, Satan’s destiny is sealed—an eternity in the lake  of fire (Revelation  20:10).

Satan is a spiritual being who led a heavenly revolt against God and was  subsequently cast down into the earth (Luke 10:18).  His personal name, “Satan,” means “adversary.” This name indicates Satan’s basic  nature: he is the enemy of God, of all God does, and of all God loves.

He is also called “the devil” in the New Testament. The word “devil” means  “false accuser” or “slanderer.” Satan plays this role in Job 1–2 when he attacks  Job’s character.

In Matthew  12:24, the Jews refer to Satan as “Beelzebul,” an epithet derived from  “Baal-Zebub” (“lord of the fly”), a false god of the Philistines in Ekron (2 Kings 1:2-3, 6).

Other titles of  Satan include the tempter (1  Thessalonians 3:5), the wicked one (Matthew  13:19, 38), the  accuser of the brethren (Revelation  12:10), and—three titles that point to Satan’s authority in this world—the  ruler of this world (John 12:31),  the god of this age (2  Corinthians 4:4), and the prince of the power of the air (Ephesians 2:2). Second Corinthians  11:14 says that Satan transforms himself into “an angel of light,” a  description that highlights his capacity and inclination to deceive.

There are a couple of passages which refer to the judgment of earthly kings but  may very well also refer to Satan. The first is Isaiah  14:12-15. This is addressed to the king of Babylon (verse 4), but the  description also seems to fit that of a more powerful being. The name “Lucifer,”  which means “morning star,” is used here to describe someone who sought to  overthrow God’s very throne.

The second passage is Ezekiel 28:11-19,  addressed to the king of Tyre. As in the “Lucifer” passage, this prophecy  contains wording that seems to go beyond the description of a mere mortal. The  king of Tyre is said to be “anointed as a guardian cherub,” but he was laid low  by pride and “expelled” by God Himself.

In addition to providing names  and titles of Satan, the Bible uses various metaphors to reveal the character of  the enemy. Jesus, in the parable of the four soils, likens Satan to the birds  that snatch the seed off the hardened ground (Matthew  13:4, 19). In  another parable, Satan appears as the sower of weeds among the wheat (Matthew 13:25, 28). Satan is analogous to  a wolf in John 10:12 and a roaring lion in 1 Peter 5:8.  In Revelation  12:9, Satan is the “great dragon . . . that serpent of old”—obviously, a  reference to the serpent who deceived Eve (Genesis  3:1).