Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him. The Lord said to Satan, “The Lord rebuke you, Satan! The Lord, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?”
Now Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes as he stood before the angel. The angel said to those who were standing before him, “Take off his filthy clothes.”
Then he said to Joshua, “See, I have taken away your sin, and I will put fine garments on you.”
- Zechariah 3:1-4
Satan rose up against Israel and incited David to take a census of Israel. So David said to Joab and the commanders of the troops, “Go and count the Israelites from Beersheba to Dan. Then report back to me so that I may know how many there are.”
But Joab replied, “May the Lord multiply his troops a hundred times over. My lord the king, are they not all my lord’s subjects? Why does my lord want to do this? Why should he bring guilt on Israel?”
- 1 Chronicles 21:1-2
And I will keep on doing what I am doing in order to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about. For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants also masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.
- 2 Corinthians 11:12-15
“Then I asked, ‘Who are you, Lord?’
“‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,’ the Lord replied. ‘Now get up and stand on your feet. I have appeared to you to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen and will see of me. I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’
- Acts 26:15-18
Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.
- John 1:16-18
“If anybody really wants to know him [Satan] better I would say to that person, Don’t worry. If you really want to, you will. Whether you’ll like it when you do is another question.”
- C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
But the corollary to the person who wants to know Satan is the person who does not believe in Satan. Satan likes it that way. That means that the person is sitting there with no defenses and an empty home in which to invade. That start spouting off all kinds of nonsense, thinking that they are being creative, while only a puppet on a string.
But let’s look at the Scripture first. In the Scripture from Zechariah 3, we see Satan as a visible entity, accusing the Saint. Yet, when David was duped by Satan into doing a census, he was totally fooled. Even Joab thought this to be a bad idea, but something inside David’s mind caused him to sin against God. For those who do not understand what was going on. David wanted a census to know how many eligible warriors he had in case he needed to go to war, but God wanted David to trust Him instead of trusting in human numbers.
Then, from his first letter to the Corinthians, we see the Apostle Paul explain that Satan can easily fool people in that he masquerades as the angel of light, although he spreads only darkness, as described in Paul’s testimony before Agrippa, from the book of Acts.
So, is Satan a spirit or is Satan a physical being? Is Satan “light” or is Satan “darkness?” The last Scripture from the Gospel of John states that no one has seen God, only the Son of God. God is spirit, but Jesus is equally God, but in physical form. When Elisha’s servant did not see God’s Angel Army in 2 Kings 6, Elisha asks God to reveal what the servant cannot see. We have angels around us, as I am writing this and as you read it. God is watching us, but we do not see Him. Satan is much more limited, but not limited enough to not be nearby, and Satan is sly enough to know when to pounce.
And as I said earlier, those who do not believe in Satan can easily fall prey to the lures of treasures in this world, and maybe the greatest temptation, comfort.
But that comfort is a false comfort, just as Satan pretending to be the angel of light. God provides true comfort, but we seek earthly comfort, those things that rot or depreciate into nothingness. God’s comfort is always there.
But to tie all this in with the C. S. Lewis quote, those who are curious, wanting to know more about Satan or those who deny his existence, Satan will work extra hard to prevent them from knowing that he is around, and pulling their strings. They would hate being called a Satan worshipper, but they might admit that they “love,” maybe even “worship,” the earthly things with which Satan tempts them.
Our blindness in seeing God will one day be lifted when we are united with Him in the next life. Until then we can see the works of God all around us and we can hear His voice.
But the same is true for Satan. We may see Satan one day, briefly, as he is thrown into the lake of fire. We can see his handiwork in the twisted and defeated people of this world and we can hear his voice.
How do we know what voice we are hearing? By careful study of the Bible. If what we think we are hearing is not supported by Scripture, we are not hearing the voice of God.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.