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Satan
02-10-2001, 07:50 AM
No, not me, silly...

I mean the evil dude. The REAL evil dude, the bad angel cast out from Heaven because it's way cooler to be the ruler in Aitch-ee-double-hockey-sticks.

Yeah, THAT guy...

Supposedly he left on his own free will. Can't he come back to God and say, hey, I miss the view from up there. My bad...

Would he be forgiven?

And how exactly would Christianity have to adapt to this new afterlife devoid of a gate-keeper for all the unsaved souls?

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Collounsbury
02-10-2001, 08:31 AM
He's out of work. Does the big cheese give unemployment or will he get hired on in the good department?

Sterra
02-10-2001, 10:11 AM
Fool!:D Satan can't repent. Because according to the prophecys he doesen't. (the whole part where god will surely triumph I think means that he fights. Or maybe hes already repented)

Bottom line, we only know what god does about humans. God tells his angels what he does to them when they start rebelling.

Brian Bunnyhurt
02-10-2001, 10:48 AM
Excellent question, seriously, and it demonstrates that it's all a staged play, where one of the keys, repentence, is excluded by law from one of the players. Of course, this also assumes that Jesus is not Satan, which we can never assume in a rigged game, because if there really was a Satan, he would easily disguise himself as a soter of destruction.

scratch1300
02-10-2001, 10:56 AM
Originally posted by Brian Bunnyhurt
It demonstrates that it's all a staged play, where one of the keys, repentence, is excluded by law from one of the players. Of course, this also assumes that Jesus is not Satan, which we can never assume in a rigged game, because if there really was a Satan, he would easily disguise himself as a soter of destruction.

Huh? What the Hell are you talking about? What's a soter? And how do you know it would be so easy to disguise as one?

Brian Bunnyhurt
02-10-2001, 11:16 AM
Soter is a savior, a theological term. And it's very easy to disguise as one, because people expect one before the fact. Even now, aliens could extort the fact that many people in the world expect Christ to return. By the way, I don't believe in the actuality of Satan or Jesus, just in their imagined existence, which is more powerful (because they aren't around to limit anyone's imagination, so they are infinitely powerful as motivating ideas).

Also, it is more probable that if monotheism had any actual validity whatsoever, that Jesus would therefore be Satan, because it is impossible for God to fully employ Satan, and still be God, and it makes more sense that God fully allows anything to happen, even demon imposters as soter to see who the worthy intelligent humans worth saving are. Are they the cautious ones who trust their god-given instincts and develop their minds? Or are they toad-eating selfish types that believe in any "God" who promises them something? A hidden God would not be offended by atheists, but would obviously embrace them as standing up for their acquired knowledge (integrity) and never following the wrong idiot. It is safest to never take sides out of ignorance.

In tragedy, we don't always know who the real antagonist is. Two world destroyers in one play? I think not. Besides, isn't it just like a devil to kill all the other gods first?

Freedom
02-10-2001, 11:28 AM
Point to Consider:


Satan is a fallen angel, not a human.

I never figured out all the ins and outs of the end of the world, but I do think there is a distinction between angels and humans.

I'm not sure we all get the same deal.

They get to fly and live in heaven, we get to be forgiven.

(I'm not exactly sure that is the way it works, just guessing)

Patty O'Furniture
02-10-2001, 12:40 PM
According to the religious tripe that was drilled into my head during a summer bible camp* when I was a teenager, you must repent before you step into the afterlife. You can't wait until you get there to see that there actually is a god, and then repent. If the same rule applies to Satan then he's toast.

*Interesting anecdote: I never saw any religious enlightenement at that camp. I did, however, have my first sexual encounter there! Ah, the fond memories of bible camp...

scratch1300
02-10-2001, 12:51 PM
Okay Bunny, but what was more curious about your original reply was your use of the terms staged play and rigged game. Why "staged" and "rigged"?

Brian Bunnyhurt
02-10-2001, 01:37 PM
Scratch,

As per "rigged game," consider that the outcome is foretold. This presents a problem, the least of which is the logical spawning of omniscience and predestination.

As per "staged play," consider that the main players are polarized in a life and death struggle, a drama if there ever was one. Nature and real life is more mundane.

Now ask yourself: Why would a just and loving God need blind allegiance? Only a jealous one would. Jealous of what? BING! Jealous of the real God.

Also, life can only be a real test if and only if the answers are unknown. If they are "known" in any sense then it is part of the test, obviously an easy to spot deception, or simple test. A complex test involves right versus right (Greek tragedy).

Also, a hidden god does not validate faith in any way, in the sense that it is logical or even obvious to have faith due to God's hidden nature. However, faith VALIDATES an invisible god. See the tricky part yet? Bad news for the faithful. If God ever shows himself, he won't have any use for them, and they wouldn't know him anyway, because faith inspires solid or simple expectations for simple reasons and the odds of a Supreme Being "being" what simple faith-obsessed people want him to be are slim indeed.

Conclusion from over a thousand years ago: A single supreme being is a major dilemma--either the diety is impotent for allowing evil, or unjust for punishing those for the wickedness he allows.

White Male in the HOOD
02-10-2001, 01:39 PM
The more learned among us have concluded there IS no devil. Evil is misuse of universal law, which, naturally, God created. God created all there is. It would be foolish to think God would be 'evil' enough to even WANT to create Satan. Why would he do that? Think about it people. If you think God is anything but perfection, truth and goodnesss, you're out of touch with reality. Satan, as a concept, was merely created by the team of ghostwriters, (you thought GOD came down and wrote a BOOK?..HAHAHA) who wrote the Bible to control people, to put enough FEAR in folks to encourage them to follow the religious 'leaders'. They have always gotten a lot of mileage out of speaking about 'SATAN' who is supposedly lurking around every corner. The OP's question is therefore moot. Sorry to disappoint all you 'devil' worshippers.

scratch1300
02-10-2001, 02:10 PM
Originally posted by Brian Bunnyhurt
As per "rigged game," consider that the outcome is foretold. This presents a problem, the least of which is the logical spawning of omniscience and predestination.

I still don't see it. Since you've called it a "game", let's make an analogy with baseball. Suppose I am at the plate and one, two, three strikes -- I'm out. The rules of the game do not allow me to "repent" and ask the umpire for another swing. But that doesn't mean that I had no free will in the first place, or that my strikeout was pre-ordained.

I'm no expert in the field, but I'd always supposed Satan was reckoned (by traditional theology) to be in the same situation. He was an angel. He had free will. He rebelled. He was cast into Hell. And now he couldn't get out if he tried, or wouldn't even think to try in the first place, or something like that. (Though I know that some folks -- Giordano Bruno for one -- did indeed suppose that Satan might be saved). I just don't see that it denies angelic free will.

Fenris
02-10-2001, 02:55 PM
There's an unbelievably b*a*d book by Roger Elwood (don't remember the title: Fallen Angel, maybe?) that attempts to deal with this (sort of...). A demon decides to repent, and spends the next however many pages wandering around bashing Christians who aren't of Roger Elwood's variety. Eventually, the demon blows it and ends up back in hell. The moral of the story seems to be: Demons are allowed to repent, but they won't.

Convienent, that.

Did I mention that it's a really, really, really bad book?

Fenris

Brian Bunnyhurt
02-10-2001, 03:11 PM
If we are talking about angels, then we have multiple problems to deal with. What are the limits of an archangel? How can one of them fall? A palace revolt against the creator of the universe? I hold that these personified forces are evidence that they don't really exist (the forces or personalities, which are easy to imagine as motive), because the explanation is complicated for being too simple. Problem: If an archangel finds it convenient to rebel against God, maybe they know something about God that we don't. Either way, if we assume suffering exists, we can also assume that either God wills it or cannot avert it, and therefore the idea of Satan becomes way too convenient, and problematic. By Occam's razor, it makes more sense that there is no God, OR that there is a God or process testing us to see if we will prostitute ourselves to his imitation. It makes little sense to imagine a test with known answers and cast out sincere doubters who see this test as a trick (since that will yield only slaves, and slaves don't require a test that uses or implies freedom).

Also, Jesus didn't die for my sins, which I never had, but his death brought instant sin upon my head, and I am supposedly still going to be punished by his death. This sounds suspiciously based on pure evil to me. The blatant lie here is that if one doesn't sell their soul to this demigod, then they are condemned by his grace. You can't condemn someone for nothing by justice, not now, not ever.

JerseyDiamond
02-10-2001, 03:33 PM
Originally posted by Freedom
Point to Consider:


Satan is a fallen angel, not a human.

I never figured out all the ins and outs of the end of the world, but I do think there is a distinction between angels and humans.

I'm not sure we all get the same deal.

They get to fly and live in heaven, we get to be forgiven.

(I'm not exactly sure that is the way it works, just guessing)

From what I learned, it's kinda like this: The angels in heaven are Gods servants and we are Gods children.
If my earthly father had sevants like a maid, butler, or a nanny they would have some authority over me because they know better and they are older and wiser. Being that I am my fathers daughter, I am heir to everything that he has (as long as I have obeyed him throughout the years).
When we get to, we will be over the angel, cause we are the children of God.

As for satan, he still has access to the throne. He can go in front of God just like the other angel, but he is no longer part of the staff. :p
Even though the devil is in rebellion, God still has ultimate power and can stop him from doing anything he wants. He has to ask God for permission to test us. Satan was kicked out of heaven. Read Isaiah and Job if you want to learn more.

SuaSponte
02-10-2001, 04:17 PM
Satan, first of all, welcome back, dude. Missed ya.

Second, I think your OP posits an impossibility. According to the theology in which I was raised (and later abandoned), a prime distinction between angels and humanity is that humans are the only ones with free will. Thus, Satan's (the other one) revolt was preordained, and he does not have the capacity to repent, unless god chooses to allow him to do so.

My former religion never explained to us young'ns how god could preordain the entrance of an evil power into the universe, with all the attendant suffering, and still be a good god, but that's not strictly germane to this discussion.

Sua

jmullaney
02-10-2001, 06:10 PM
Here's the Catholic "party line" (http://www.christusrex.org/www1/CDHN/visible3.html#THE) -- angels with freewill made irrevocable choice, does not imply lack of mercy to God. What Attrayant said, basically.

Oh, and BTW, Brian Bunnyhurt -- I would suggest you might simplify your points about God being evil and Satan being good, by simply deciding to just go ahead and call Satan the bad one and God the good one just most like every other English speaker. You make some interesting point though.

SuaSponte
02-10-2001, 06:16 PM
Originally posted by jmullaney
[B]Here's the Catholic "party line" (http://www.christusrex.org/www1/CDHN/visible3.html#THE) -- angels with freewill made irrevocable choice, does not imply lack of mercy to God. What Attrayant said, basically.
I can't see how this is consistent with other aspects of the Catholic party line:

1. How can a choice to act in a certain way be "irrevocable" if free will exists? Couldn't Satan just decide to stop acting evil?

2. If Satan's choice is irrevocable because he has committed too much evil by now, doesn't that blow a big hole in the concept of Divine forgiveness and/or the ability to redeem oneself?

3. Hi, Opal!

Sua

jmullaney
02-10-2001, 06:46 PM
I would suggest that they sinned against the Holy Spirit. Being angels, they probably even know what that means. WAG coming up. Since angels are pure spirit, they are more able to screw up on such a plane than we are -- and in fact, this would be the only sin they could possibly commit.

Though sin is a free choice of free will, sin by its nature reduces freedom. All sinners are slaves, as Paul said. So theoretically, you could sin so bad that you lose your freedom not to sin. Perhaps humans can't, but celestial beings can. Perhaps they are SuperJunkies.

elucidator
02-10-2001, 11:13 PM
The immediate result would be a power struggle for control of Hell. My money's on Stalin.

dropzone
02-11-2001, 12:08 AM
Originally posted by Brian Bunnyhurt
... but his death brought instant sin upon my head, and I am supposedly still going to be punished by his death.
Huh?

(Unless you are talking about a theology that holds that this "instant sin" is that, until you have accepted Jesus as your saviour, you are automatically going to Hell. In which case I'll say, to myself because it's tacky to talk like this in GD, "That's a stupid theology and not in keeping with the concept of a just and merciful God and people who think that are as stupid as their theology.")

SPOOFE
02-11-2001, 12:29 AM
What'll really blow your mind is that, if the whole "battle between good and evil" thing is to be believed, the role of Lucifer is a crucial one that can't be left unfilled. After all, with no temptation, there is no salvation. So if Satan decided one day to stop trying to destroy the souls of mankind, we'd all be screwed.

Another possibility is that Lucifer will be forgiven... or maybe he's already been forgiven?... but he'll still retain the duty of trying to tempt humanity away from God's word.

Y'know, either you should think about this while stoned or don't think about it at all. My head hurts.

SuaSponte
02-11-2001, 10:19 AM
Originally posted by jmullaney
I would suggest that they sinned against the Holy Spirit. Being angels, they probably even know what that means. WAG coming up. Since angels are pure spirit, they are more able to screw up on such a plane than we are -- and in fact, this would be the only sin they could possibly commit.

Though sin is a free choice of free will, sin by its nature reduces freedom. All sinners are slaves, as Paul said. So theoretically, you could sin so bad that you lose your freedom not to sin. Perhaps humans can't, but celestial beings can. Perhaps they are SuperJunkies.
Not a bad response, jmullaney. I'll pull on my thinkin' cap about that one.

Sua

Brian Bunnyhurt
02-11-2001, 10:26 AM
Dropzone,

Deconstructing salvation is a very messy enterprize. What's this about a just and merciful God? Where is God's justice? Where is God's mercy? Jesus supposedly died for my sins, which I DO NOT HAVE, which I NEVER HAD, but I'm STILL going to be judged, theoretically, for not accepting this? That was my point. Theologically speaking, he didn't die for my sins, he died for the right to condemn me for not embracing him or admitting that I had sins to begin with. I see it differently, of course, than someone who accepts this all without question. I repeat, I have no sins and I don't need some self-righteous human sacrifice to redeem me. I am free of that evil demonology and can prove it lacks necessity. In the old days I would have been murdered for these beliefs, so tell us again how God is merciful and just.

Polycarp
02-11-2001, 02:06 PM
Attrayant...nice take on the basic problem of the OP, but your approach rests on an assumption made by most Christians that "decision time ends with death" -- and this is nowhere spelled out, though a couple of passages seem to imply it. And I have a significant problem with it, in that it makes God limited by death. And it's quite explicit in Scripture that He overcame death -- we don't celebrate Easter out of a superstitious fear that if we don't believe in the Bunny, we won't get any candy! :eek:

As for what you did experience, I'm sorry it wasn't a particularly good experience for you -- most people appear to find that event an occasion of "religious enlightenment": "Oh, God, oh yes, Jesus, yes....!" ;)

In all seriousness, I don't have a clue what Satan's ultimate destiny is, as per the OP. And this is an ignorance I can live with -- the idea of what God has in store for people is a tough enough nut to crack without worrying about putatively rebellious angels who function as tempters as well. I leave that to His mercy and to the good sense of a prideful being who knows God better than I and who ought to have come to his senses about the Divine Plan by now. I might also bring up Voltaire's quote to the effect that if the devil ever took over the godding job, he would find it necessary to take on the attributes of divinity. And the use Heinlein made of this in perhaps my favorite attack on Gnostic mysticism and fundamentalist Weaselism.

And, of course, let me add, "Welcome back, Satan." :::Envisions a crowd of MPSIMS groupies dressed as Sweathogs breaking into a parody of "Welcome Back Kotter"::::

jmullaney
02-11-2001, 04:27 PM
Originally posted by Polycarp
this is nowhere spelled out
What sort of "spelling out" would satisfy you? The Sermon to the Multitudes (http://bible.gospelcom.net/cgi-bin/bible?passage=LUKE+12;LUKE+13:1-9;&language=english&version=NIV) in Luke seems to make it pretty clear that death is the end. E.g.:

It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. I tell you the truth, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the second or third watch of the night. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into.
To say there is a repentance after death suggests to the contrary that the owner knows when the Lord will come like a thief in the night as he will be announced with unmistakable bells and whistles.

And I have a significant problem with it, in that it makes God limited by death.
Isn't that like saying you have a problem with the hundred yard dash because it limits the judges to figure out who the best runner is of a hundred yards?

absoul
02-11-2001, 09:48 PM
I asked my sunday school teacher this same question when I was 10.
She just looked at me and said "Of course not, he's Satan!"

Actually I believe you have commited the only unforgivable sin for bringing this up, see ya in Hhh... err... at your place.

dropzone
02-11-2001, 10:32 PM
Originally posted by Brian Bunnyhurt
Jesus supposedly died for my sins, which I DO NOT HAVE, which I NEVER HAD, but I'm STILL going to be judged, theoretically, for not accepting this?
Jeeze! Ya don't like it? Change religions! If you don't believe in something THEN IT CAN'T HURT YOU! Look at me: a church-goin' atheist with NO fear of the afterlife, no fear of judgement, and no fear of eternal damnation. Why? 'CUZ IT'S ALL MADE UP!!!!

Sheesh, it's not TOUGH, like being a Ford man buying a Chevy.

SPOOFE
02-12-2001, 05:24 AM
To say there is a repentance after death suggests to the contrary that the owner knows when the Lord will come like a thief in the night as he will be announced with unmistakable bells and whistles.

Did Satan (Lucifer-Satan, not Brian-Satan) ever die? Last I heard, he and his ilk were cast out of God's presence without ever getting a chance to be born.

Gaspode
02-12-2001, 06:42 AM
Originally posted by SuaSponte
According to the theology in which I was raised (and later abandoned), a prime distinction between angels and humanity is that humans are the only ones with free will. Thus, Satan's (the other one) revolt was preordained, and he does not have the capacity to repent, unless god chooses to allow him to do so.
So Satan and the other demons are going to be punished forever for commiting an act that was preordained, which they never had the free will to not perform, and can never repent of.
Isn't this like telling a dog to fetch a stick and then hitting it for doing so, forever, and never allowing it to run away?

dal_timgar
02-12-2001, 09:49 AM
can't just repent. have to do the negative karma thing to compensate for the evil deeds. that's why they don't repent.

would have to get a new one anyway.

Dal Timgar

AHunter3
02-12-2001, 11:35 AM
What about the Genesis serpent? God had not commanded the serpent not to tempt Eve, right? Seems to me that the scaly one got a bit of a bum deal, too. And all he did was tell Eve what eating the fruit would do for her. Admittedly, he may have known more thoroughly than Eve and Adam did just how pissed off God was going to be if she did so, but this hasn't been firmly established by the evidence (in fact we don't know what the snake did or did not know beforehand other than "eating those fruits will let you know good from evil" and "no, eating those fruits will not kill you".

And what's with this bruising of heads and heels? I guess it would not have worked as well had God sought to bruise the heel of the serpent and the head of the man, given his subsequent herpeto-limbectomy procedure, but aside from that...?

Brian Bunnyhurt
02-12-2001, 12:07 PM
Dropzone,

I did change religions, from traditional-provincial thinking (theirs) to logical-objective thinking (mine). As long as monotheism is political, it is fair game in season. Why join just any religion, when you can not join all of them?

jmullaney
02-12-2001, 12:24 PM
Originally posted by SPOOFE Bo Diddly
Last I heard, he and his ilk were cast out of God's presence without ever getting a chance to be born.
In so much as they were created spiritual beings with free will, they were 'born', they just never existed on the spiritual plane.

Badtz Maru
02-12-2001, 11:49 PM
This brings up one of the big differences between Judaism and Christianity. Judaism holds that angels have no free will, they are basically extensions of God, and thus cannot rebel. In the Old Testament, Satan works for God, and his job is to question and test God's creation - in this context, Genesis and Job make a lot more sense. The whole war in Heaven with Satan being a rebel against God and cast out is a Christian creation.

Satan
02-13-2001, 12:26 AM
Yeah, Badtz. I guess it's because the God of the New Testament needed an evil foil. This is another reason why I am proud of my Jewish heritage. The Old Testament God didn't need to have underlings do His dirty work. Dude rolled up his sleeves and whether it was worldwide floods or turning people into piles of salt, did his own hits! I mean, you have to admire Him for that...

__________________
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Czarcasm
02-13-2001, 01:33 AM
If we leave out the "repentance" and "forgiveness" parts out of the equation, what's to stop Satan from just quitting the game? If he's not allowed to change, and he HAS to play the game just as it is written in the Bible, than, at best, he is a pawn, and at worst, the most maligned victim in history.
Of course, I expect no better from a "god" that would tell a group of people fleeing their home, which is being destoyed at that moment,"Do Not Look Back!!!", knowing full well that someone would have to look back now, human nature being what it is. Lot's wife was merely another victim of "Pettygod the All Powerful".

drachillix
02-13-2001, 08:08 AM
Originally posted by Collounsbury
He's out of work. Does the big cheese give unemployment or will he get hired on in the good department?

Forget Satans unemployment, how about down here? Millions of religion related jobs worldwide would be put out of work if Satan "retires".

The strain on world economics! :eek:

jmullaney
02-13-2001, 11:13 AM
Originally posted by Badtz Maru
Judaism holds that angels have no free will, they are basically extensions of God, and thus cannot rebel.

Originally posted by Satan
This is another reason why I am proud of my Jewish heritage. The Old Testament God didn't need to have underlings do His dirty work.

Um, are you guys agreeing or disagreeing? Either Satan doesn't have free will and is hence an underling, or he does and isn't. Y'all seem to make it both ways.

And besides, read Revelations -- there are plenty of good angels in there murdering, swearing, etc. on God's behalf. Same God -- just on vacation storing up the pent up wrath.

WhiteRaven
02-13-2001, 07:15 PM
Originally posted by SuaSponte

According to the theology in which I was raised (and later abandoned), a prime distinction between angels and humanity is that humans are the only ones with free will. Thus, Satan's (the other one) revolt was preordained, and he does not have the capacity to repent, unless god chooses to allow him to do so.


Which sugguests that Satan was MADE with the intent of being cast out. So it wasnt his actions that made him revolt, but is only following a (script/programming) that he was MADE to fulfill. heres a thought, somebody makes a virus, and spreads it around, and makes a counter program that people have to buy from him, is the Virus Evil? or the maker?
Seems to me the deck was stacked against poor ol Satan from the beginning, if he has no free will, it wasnt HIM that did it. he had no choice but TO do it.

--If we leave out the "repentance" and "forgiveness" parts out of the equation, what's to stop Satan from just quitting the game? If he's not allowed to change, and he HAS to play the game just as it is written in the Bible, than, at best, he is a pawn, and at worst, the most maligned victim in history--

Seems to me, that would take free will to decide to do that. its not in his "programming" to be able to even quit if he wanted to, assuming he even has "wants" programmed in. Of course I could be wrong on the whole "Free Will" thing.
To me this just makes Christianity more of a Joke. If it is even true, there is a deeper reason to why he would create something like Satan the way that he is. (because by all definitions God did create him that way, with all he would do in mind) From what I understand of Free will, if we did not have it, we would be "robots" or a more modern version, computer programs. programmed to do a specific task...Aka angels..hence satan being an angel would had to have been either made that way or been given free will, which I think would have been noted.
Another gripe (which is a bit unrelated to the OP) that I have with Satan is his "supposed" Omnipotence. Now I could be wrong, but it seems to me that God was the only one with this ability. How is it he is Everwhere at once, and has such awesome ablities of instilling mind control on billions of people all at once?

Personally I have always thought of satan as an analogy to us. (humans in general) This would make the bible a bit inaccurate in a way. We wanted the throne, he cast us out of heaven. The Fruit of the tree of Knowledge was forbidden us because it would lead us down a path (which we are still walking down) that would bring us to too much power and possibly give us another chance at the Throne..or utter banishment. Of course he offers us repentance, to cast away the dreams of the Throne, and accept him as our sovereign, he will allow us back into his kingdom. If not he will be forced to destroy us so that he can retain his rule.
Of course it could just be my imagination..ive been told I have alot of it.

jmullaney
02-13-2001, 08:17 PM
Originally posted by WhiteRaven
Seems to me, that would take free will to decide to do that. its not in his "programming" to be able to even quit if he .... Of course I could be wrong on the whole "Free Will" thing.

To me this just makes Christianity more of a Joke. If it is even true, there is a deeper reason to why he would create something like Satan the way that he is. (because by all definitions God did create him that way, with all he would do in mind)
But, aside from Lucifer, there were other angels with Free Will who did not fall. If I take my dog off his leash, I don't have in mind that he'll run away. I know he might, but the point of Free Will is that God doesn't know what a Free being is going to do.

satan being an angel would had to have been either made that way or been given free will, which I think would have been noted.
Noted? :confused: Sure, it is noted. In the FIDEI DEPOSITUM (http://www.christusrex.org/www1/CDHN/ccc.html) I've linked to previously. You know -- from the guys who brought you the Bible? 1900 years on the best sellers list?

It is just the nature of Satan's sin and subsequent fall that there is nothing he can do to get out of it.

Divine justice is superior to human justice, of course, but I haven't noticed any yahoos with uzis killing a bunch of pre-schoolers at a McDonalds exactly being forgiven after they repent. They really don't have the freedom to truly repent anymore -- they are going down the hole for the rest of their lives. God and his angels and his saints must forgive this man if he repents, but I don't see why the justice of God shouldn't reflect the typical justice of man.

How is it [Satan] is Everwhere at once, and has such awesome ablities of instilling mind control on billions of people all at once?
People give him power over them by their own free choice. He isn't everywhere nor does he know everything, nor is the yahoo with the uzi going to get very far by saying "Satan made me do it."

The Fruit of the tree of Knowledge was forbidden us because it would lead us down a path (which we are still walking down) that would bring us to too much power and possibly give us another chance at the Throne..or utter banishment.
Well, that is Lucifer a.k.a. the Morning Star's most persuasive argument -- that it is always darkest before the dawn. That if we just go with him a little further, we'll eventually see that he's the true god, not that other guy.

"Say, Satan -- um... I'm up to my neck in rat shit and I think there are leaches down here..."
"Just a little further, you'll see."

Of course, why we are still walking down that path is a mystery. Herd instinct?

Of course he offers us repentance, to cast away the dreams of the Throne, and accept him as our sovereign, he will allow us back into his kingdom.
Well, at least he offers us repentance, unlike typical human justice. It is silly to serve Satan and think that you are free -- God does seem to offer the better deal. But as an ardent Satan-worshipper myself, I made a bad spokesperson. YMMV.

Derleth
02-13-2001, 10:31 PM
Obligatory quote:
"There ain't no Satan, there's just God when He's drunk."
-Damn, I can't think of who said it.

Anyway, with the mixed and muddled religious teaching I got (before I turned atheist), I was taught that angels were simply facets of the deity. Kind of like pieces of the infinite mind, given a kind of form for a limited time to communicate with us humans. In that theology, it is rather meaningless to say they have 'free will' or even their own existence. The Adversary (Satan) and his kin are just the pieces of the mind full of self-doubt and fear, the subconscious of the deity, if you will. Upon Judgement, the deity's mind will be unified and the Universe will disappear like a dream, along with all of the doubt and fear now relegated to the nether-regions. Those free of fear will be unified, those not will simply cease to be. I think 'God withdraws his breath.' is the relevant concept here. With the duality gone, it will be Paradise.

Of course, I'm an atheist and don't believe in any of this anyway. But it's still interesting to follow and think about.

Badtz Maru
02-14-2001, 12:58 AM
Well, if you think God is omniscient, then we really don't have any free-will, at least from His standpoint, since he knows exactly what we are going to do.

Triskadecamus
02-14-2001, 01:37 AM
I think Satan could repent, and could turn his heart to the Lord, and be saved.

Repentance on that scale might require some serious acts of contrition, by the way. And there is that whole pride thing, as well. Gonna keep dat ol' debbil busy by and by.

But the barrier is, and always has been put there by the sinner, not by the Lord. Satan, you, and me, we all have the same end of the deal. And the choice is free.

jmullaney
02-14-2001, 10:46 AM
Originally posted by Badtz Maru
if you think God is omniscient]

We might allow that there are multiple definitions of the word omniscient: one meaning knowing what is and was, the other meaning knowing what is, was, and will be. As omniscient means knowing all that can be known, depending on your belief about what can be known its meaning changes.

tracer
02-14-2001, 02:03 PM
Freedom wrote:

Satan is a fallen angel, not a human.

I never figured out all the ins and outs of the end of the world, but I do think there is a distinction between angels and humans.

I'm not sure we all get the same deal.

They get to fly and live in heaven, we get to be forgiven.

Aha! So you can sin in Heaven!

(I'm not exactly sure that is the way it works, just guessing)

D'OH!

likearock
02-15-2001, 02:05 AM
In Islam, "satan" rebelled not against God, but against man. "Um, God, you know those people you made- biiiiig mistake!--And I'll prove it to you." Hence the sin and temptation, etc.

Note: I'm actually a Catholic, I just like playing "devil's advocate."

Randy
02-15-2001, 03:49 AM
Originally posted by Satan
No, not me, silly...

I mean the evil dude. The REAL evil dude, the bad angel cast out from Heaven because it's way cooler to be the ruler in Aitch-ee-double-hockey-sticks.

Yeah, THAT guy...

Supposedly he left on his own free will. Can't he come back to God and say, hey, I miss the view from up there. My bad...


Just as God is NOT this old kinda feeble guy sitting up there on the porch occasionally looking down and letting the world go on until something really important happens that requires his minimal attention but mostly ignoring everybody for which alot of people are going to give him a piece of their mind when they finally see him because when they did need Him He of course didn't show up, Satan here, in my belief, is being misunderstood. He is being minimilized.

When Moses asked God, if he could look at Him, God told Moses that noone can look at Him and live. Not that God would kill him for doing it, but that His magnificense, His power, brightness, glory, His awesomeness is not something that a human being would be able to survive seeing. I mean for cryin' out loud, He CREATED the Heaven and Earth. He commands the Sun to rise. He holds the waters back at the edge of the ocean. He is GOD.

Imagine THAT, in Evil Form. Of course not as much, because Satan is a created being, but he still, is an immensely powerful being, Satan IS Evil. He makes anything Wes Craven can come up with look like an innocent, lovely baby. He hates you. He not only wants to ultimately kill you, if he was allowed, he would do it slowly and torturously. He is a destroyer. He is behind every evil and wicked act ever committed throughout History, and I still haven't been able to accurately paint the picture that I want you to see of this Powerfully Evil Being.

The point is this. Repentence is not a concept that is pondered or understood by Satan. It's not a possibility to him.

Czarcasm
02-15-2001, 08:28 AM
Randy, have you actually read the Bible, or did you just believe everything your church taught you without question? you didn't desribe Satan as he is in the Bible(certainly not the Old Testament), you described the Boogyman.
If the Satan you describe is totally evil and incapable of repentance, guess who made him that way-the "god" you worship blindly.
If either entity actually existed, I would consider Satan to be a natural force that canot be changed, not someone to hate, because he cannot be anything other than what he is.
I would save my hatred for a supposedly all-powerful being that would destroy the entire population of a planet in the cruelest way possible(except for one family), in a childish fit of anger.

emarkp
02-15-2001, 08:59 PM
I think it's worth mentioning what the Bible says about Lucifer:

Isaiah 14:12-15

12. How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!

13. For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:

14. I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.

15. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.

His rebellion isn't the same as the sins we commit. Whereas a mortal rebels against faith, Lucifer's action was open rejection of God, and an attempt to place himself as God, with full knowledge. It's pretty hard to use our understanding of repentance in this case.

More Cowbell
02-15-2001, 11:14 PM
Except this verse does not refer to Satan! Read the whole chapter in context! It is refering to the King of Babylon, not a fallen angel! And if you start throwing around the word archetype, this verse can just as easily be applied to Jesus. After all, Jesus is called the Morning Star in Revelations (22:16). Lucifer means Morning Star.


Lets take a look:
Isaiah 14:13-15
You said in your heart, "I will ascend to heaven, above the stars of God, and will set my throne on High... I will ascend above the heights of the Clouds, I will be as the Most High." Yet you will be brought down to the grave, to the sides of the pit!

Matt 26:64
Jesus said to him, "...I say to you, Hereafter you all shall see the Son of Man seated on the right hand of Power
and arriving on the Clouds of Heaven!"


Or how about this:
Isaiah 14:16
They who see you shall narrowly look at you, saying, "Is this the man who made the earth tremble, who shook kingdoms?..."

Matt 27:50-54
Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, gave up the ghost. And, the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top to the bottom, and the earth did quake, and the rocks fell! ... The centurion and those with him, sensing the quake, were terrified...



I can post more if anyone likes. The point is, if you take things out of context and put a spin on it, you can prove just about anything.

Badtz Maru
02-16-2001, 01:17 AM
OH MY GOD JESUS WAS SATAN!!!

Heh heh, that Lucifer=Satan misunderstanding is a common one, it seems, as is Serpent=Satan.

Randy
02-16-2001, 02:39 AM
Originally posted by Czarcasm
Randy, have you actually read the Bible, or did you just believe everything your church taught you without question? you didn't desribe Satan as he is in the Bible(certainly not the Old Testament), you described the Boogyman.

To answer your question Czarcasm, yes I have read the Bible, and I don't believe ANTHING ANYONE tells me until I can check it out myself.
I don't understand what you meant by, "You didn't describe Satan as he is in the Bible".

I know that a Bible lesson probably won’t “go over” very well here on the SDMB, but since this is a Bible related OP, and since I’ve been accused of “not describing Satan as he is in the Bible”, I have to point out specific verses in the Bible to prove otherwise. Not an apology, just an explanation.

Luke 4:5 ” Satan, taking Him (Jesus) up into a high mountain, shewed unto Him all the kingdoms of the world, in a moment of time. 6. The Devil said unto Him, all their power will I give unto Thee and the glory of them, for that is delivered unto me, and to whomsoever I will, I give it.”
Satan here is tempting Jesus to bow down to him, with the promise that the world is his, and he can give it to whoever he wants. Jesus answers that He will only bow down to His Father. He doesn’t disagree with Satan about who has authority over the world.

At another place in the New Testament, Jesus calls Satan the “Prince of the World”. Satan is also referred to in the Bible as the “God of this World”, “Ruler of Darkness”, “Prince of the Power of the Air”. This is how he is “described” in the Bible. In Revelations, Satan is called the “King of the Abyss”, “Angel of the Bottomless Pit” and a “star falling from heaven”, who is given the key to the pit. Those titles show a being of GREAT authority.

In Revelation 12, he is called “The Great Dragon”, a creature of great fierceness and power. He is also named “Belial”, which is a Greek word meaning hopeless ruin, extreme wickedness and destruction.
Revelation 20 “He (Satan) shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, to gather them together for battle, their number is as the sand of the sea". Again, these descriptions seem to be of one with extreme power and authority.

In the Book of Isaiah, an Old Testament book, a prophecy is given that somewhere at the end of time as we know it, after Satan is cast down, men will look upon him and ask if this is he who “made the Earth to tremble, that did shake Kingdoms, that made the world as a wilderness, that destroyed the cities.” Literally or symbolically, however we interpret this, Satan is a powerful being.


Jesus described Satan as a “a murderer from the beginning, (who) abode not in truth, there is no truth in him. He is the father of lies.” John 8:44 Jesus also said that Satan’s ambitions were to “steal, kill and destroy”.


Satan has these capabilities:
To inflict disease, as he did to Job.
To totally possess or control the bodies and minds of some.
To “blind the minds of them which believe not, prohibiting the truth from being known.” 2 Corinthians 4:4
The “destruction of the flesh” 1 Corinthians 5:5


The Apostle Peter warns us that, “Your adversary, the devil, is a roaring lion, walking about seeking whom he may devour”. 1 Peter 5:8

I put alot of references here because I know that some will interpret some scriptures I have used as meaning someone or something else.

If the Satan you describe is totally evil and incapable of repentance, guess who made him that way-the "god" you worship blindly.

I've never read anywhere in the Bible, where any being or person was created to be evil. As someone in a previous posting pointed out, Satans fall came from saying in himself, "I will be as the Most High". I wish that we would attribute all GOOD THINGS to God as much as we like to blame Him for everything bad.

Czarcasm
02-16-2001, 05:13 AM
The nice thing about the Bible is that, no matter what you believe, you can find at least a dozen verses that support your position once they are "properly" interpreted. Someone comes up with verses that support their position and, instead of responding to what they come up with(i.e. what the verses about "Lucifer" really refer to), you find other verses that you think support your conclusion.
Or perhaps you have a verse that tells us that all of these verses that describe what seems to me to be different beings(they have different names and do different things for different reasons), are all refering to the same entity. The name "Lucifer" is mentioned once, and is understood by most who have read the whole chapter as to be refering to a human king that thought to highly of himself.
The devil that tortured Job was directed to do so by your god, and didn't initiate anything on his own.

On the other hand, it was your god that killed off millions of people and billions of innocent animals in one of the most horrible ways that can be imagined.
Nothing Satan did, even using the loosest interpretations of his character and supposed deeds, comes close to that dispicable act. Nothing Satan does in the Bible is as cruel as what your god did to Lot's wife, who took a desparate glance at the destruction of the only friends and home she ever had, and was rewarded with the cruellest of punishments and eternal damnation.

One of the many reasons I am an Atheist is that I refuse to believe that anything as totally evil and heartless as the god you worship can exist in this universe.

jmullaney
02-16-2001, 11:55 AM
Originally posted by Czarcasm
On the other hand, it was your god that killed off millions of people and billions of innocent animals in one of the most horrible ways that can be imagined.
What are you talking about??? I fail to understand your reasoning. You believe God is evil because he did this, thus therefore you believe he doesn't exist, thus he didn't do this, thus he isn't evil, thus???

One of the many reasons I am an Atheist is that I refuse to believe that anything as totally evil and heartless as the god you worship can exist in this universe.

What do you expect in a God? Do you expect God to be a pussy?

You hypocrite. You pay to have people you don't like imprisoned and bombed. You pay to maintain an arsenal of weapons capable of destroying the whole world. You don't care about that, or your moral culpability for it. But when God has his own system of justice superior to your own you say he must be evil and can not exist. Why not fix the evil in yourself first? Or are you so evil you don't exist either?

Homebrew
02-16-2001, 03:52 PM
Originally posted by jmullaney

You hypocrite. You pay to have people you don't like imprisoned and bombed. You pay to maintain an arsenal of weapons capable of destroying the whole world. You don't care about that, or your moral culpability for it. But when God has his own system of justice superior to your own you say he must be evil and can not exist. Why not fix the evil in yourself first? Or are you so evil you don't exist either?

Wow.

Czarcasm, are you really the One in charge of everything on earth?

Get a grip, jmullaney. A lot of people have rejected the idea of God as Supreme Judge as envisioned by fundamentalist religions.

As scholar Marcus Borg puts it, "Tell me your image of God,and I'll tell you your theology." Or something to that effect.

I prefer an image of God in a more spirtual way than the Ultimate Scorekeeper. God is Love.

Back to the OP, though.

I believe that most of the Bible is allegory. In fact, most of the teachings of Jesus recorded in the Gospels were parables. If Jesus used parables, then it stands to reason that earlier Jewish writers, meaning the Old Testament authors, also used parables.

If, as I believe, Satan is an allegory, then there is no Being that needs to repent.

More Cowbell
02-16-2001, 04:53 PM
That is a big problem with Christian theology. Satan is an angel. Angels have no free will, so they can neither sin nor repent. Heaven is this perfect place devoid of sin. yet here we have an angel that sinned and was cast out. But yet he's in heaven talking with God about Job. But God can't be in the presence of sin. It's flawed from the very beginning.

The origin of evil is told in the bible. It's from God. He presents both possiblities, you have the choice which one to take.
Deuteronomy 30:15
See, I [God] have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil.

Isaiah 45:7
I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace, and create evil; I the Lord do all these things.


As for God being petty and vindictive, I guess it depends on your outlook. I see the flood as a story that illustrates the point that the choices that you make in life can not only affect you but the others around you, and bad deeds can cause catastrophes that you might not have control over. But even the worst catastrophes still have some kind of hope in them, you can always start over. And Lot's wife? Well, if you are turning away from a place in your life that wasn't good for you, it might do more harm than good to look back and think about it.

emarkp
02-16-2001, 05:53 PM
Except this verse does not refer to Satan! Read the whole chapter in context! It is refering to the King of Babylon, not a fallen angel!
It's not exactly that clear. The reference in verse 4 might be interpreted that way, or it might be to compare the King of Babylon to Lucifer. You interpret it one way, I another.

Czarcasm
02-16-2001, 07:36 PM
jmullaney, I'll try to put this as simply as possible.
IF the god you worship existed, I would consider him to be the evilest being in the universe.
Because I don't believe something that evil and petty could exist without completely destroying the universe, I am an Atheist.

By the way, the next time you find evidence that I completely screwed up and innocent man's life(Job), tried to convince a man to sacrifice his own son(Abraham), killing a woman because she jumped when I said "Boo!"(Lot's wife), or destroyed most of a population of the world except for one family that I deem to be innocent(Noah) we can talk about the evil in my heart, o.k.?
Y'know, other religions have gods that are mass murderers, but it takes cojones to claim that your god did it out of love.

More Cowbell
02-16-2001, 08:37 PM
It's not exactly that clear. The reference in verse 4 might be interpreted that way, or it might be to compare the King of Babylon to Lucifer. You interpret it one way, I another.
It is that clear. I didn't "interpret" it. There is no need to "interpret" it. I read it as it was written. The whole chapter is a "proverb against the King of Babylon". (The previous chapter is about Babylon and the king too.) It does compare the King of Babylon to Lucifer. Lucifer is the Latin term. But Lucifer is NOT an angel. And neither in Latin nor in Hebrew is the word for "angel" used. It translates "day star", which is what they called the planet Venus. The author is comparing the planet Venus to the king. Venus' light is bright enough to be seen in the morning (hence the name lucifer=day star), but disappears with the sun completely rises. This is a slam against the king (Nebuchadnezzar), telling him he will have a great but short reign and then would lose any chance of attaining the glory in history he wants. Basically calling him a one hit wonder. There are lots of comparisons in this chapter, all against old Nebbie. That is why verses 18 & 19 mentions other kings and their glory. For goodness sake, the chapter tells him he's going to lose his land to porcupines (now there is a God with a sense of humor)! The whole thing is a taunt.

No fall, no devil, no evil force opposed to God, no repentance of Satan needed. Angels can't repent because angels can't sin.

Archangel111
02-16-2001, 09:34 PM
God is all forgiving, so should Satan repent he would be forgiven and be welcomed back into Heaven, maybe even re-instated as the Archangel of Light. That's not saying, however, that another, equally evil demon would not just as easily take his/her/its place. On the flip side Satan is "All Evil", which means he is consumed with the Deadly Sins, one of which being Pride. As such, theoretically, the Devil can never freely repent.

Speaker for the Dead
02-16-2001, 11:16 PM
I have never thought about this, but I would think that if he ever was forgiven, another demon would kinda inhabit his throne.

However, I think that challenging God directly is something that's a little less forgivable than say, skronking a sheep (especially if that sheep is married).

Welcome to the Straight Dope, Archangel! Please try out all the other forums too :).

jmullaney
02-17-2001, 02:06 PM
Originally posted by Czarcasm
IF the god you worship existed, I would consider him to be the evilest being in the universe.
OK, aside from the point that I don't worship God -- I just have to say you aren't being very forgiving.

I don't believe something that evil and petty could exist
At least we can agree that a God who is of the "pure love" type you could envision might as well not exist.

It comes down to the point that I was trying to make with you -- whether or not you believe Justice and Love are mutually exclusive. You haven't given me a clue either way. I'm more than content to believe in a God who is Just. But, if you think that Justice is evil, why do you support the justice of man, which is even worse? Unless, of course, you maintain that you are evil yourself, in which case it seems imprudent for you to go around and jugde any being more just than you are of being evil and petty.

By the way, the next time you find ... we can talk about the evil in my heart, o.k.?
If you can find any evidence that God did any of these things, then please bring it forth. I think every reasonable person knows that the Flood is a myth, most people understand Job as fiction, and Lot's story (i've never read it myself) is some ancient tribal fable. How can you possibly believe all these things are true and not believe that God exists? But if you beleive they are false, how can you hold these stories against God? Can't you see your hypocrisy here?

it takes cojones to claim that your god did it out of love.
God is God of the living, not of the dead.

Czarcasm
02-17-2001, 07:47 PM
Is there any other member of the SDMB that doesn't understand what the word "if" means?
IF the "god" of the Bible existed and
IF he did the things atributed to him in the Bible
THEN I would consider him to totally petty and evil but
SINCE I don't believe that such a being exists
BECAUSE there is no evidence for either his presense
OR the acts attributed to him
THIS is merely an arguement about the belief system of
SOME people.

Understand now?

jmullaney
02-17-2001, 08:04 PM
Originally posted by Czarcasm
Is there any other member of the SDMB that doesn't understand what the word "if" means?
IF the "god" of the Bible existed
As I said, God is God of the living, not of the dead. That goes for thinly sliced dead trees as well. There's no more a "god" of the Bible than there is a god of the New York Yellow Pages.

there is no evidence for... his presense
What would you accept as evidence, anyway? (A rhetorical, if you prefer -- I don't want to hijack this thread).

Czarcasm
02-17-2001, 09:20 PM
I, and many others, have answered that question too many times to count. Look it up using the search function.
Try {i]god[/i]
proof of god's existance
Christianity

or any of the threads started by hit-and-runners from various Fundie religious groups and/or message boards.

Back to the OP*sigh*
IMHO, Satan can't repent because, like most of the major players in the Bible, he is written as if he were a character in a comic book. He's the "bad guy" that "Supergod" defeats time and time again. Superman could use his super-intelligence, super-speed and x-ray vision to put Lex Luthor away forever(if not get him the death penalty). Batman could use his vast resourses to put the Joker away in a special cell in the Batcave until he is cured or dead.
And Supergod could take away the super-natural influences of Satan, render him ineffective, and tell Mankind,"I hope you do the right thing and follow a set of principles that further civilization. I promise not to interfere. I gave you free will and a mind, and I now give you the freedom to use them, for will or woe. Good luck!"

Randy
02-18-2001, 01:08 AM
Originally posted by Czarcasm
The nice thing about the Bible is that, no matter what you believe, you can find at least a dozen verses that support your position once they are "properly" interpreted. Someone comes up with verses that support their position and, instead of responding to what they come up with(i.e. what the verses about "Lucifer" really refer to), you find other verses that you think support your conclusion.



Czarcasm
I don't know how to respond to that except to say that I am not trying to win anyone over to my way of thinking. I am not trying to interpret the Bible to support any certain "position" or "conclusion" of my own. What do I have to gain by making Satan look any certain way? What I have posted on this thread is an honest attempt by me, to relate what I have read in the Bible and been taught over the years by various teachings and teachers.
I sense that anything that is said about the Bible is going to be met with alot of bitter cynicism and "czarcasm" by you. However, (heh, you knew that was coming didn't you?) not to hijack, but since you "went there" first, I have always found the God of the Bible to be kind and gracious in His dealings with me.

jmullaney
02-18-2001, 01:38 AM
Originally posted by Czarcasm
I, and many others, have answered that question too many times to count.
I would posit, as I've posited in a few of those more recent threads, that the easiest proof that God exists is to see if he keeps the promises he makes. As I have myself put him to the test and seen that he does keep his promises, I can report back that he, apparently, does exist.

As for SuperGod -- if God could at anytime take away the free will he had previously given, it wouldn't really be free will in the first place. If we lived in some bizarro world where he could, you'd be complaining that SuperGod was evil because he was an indian-giver, and I'd have to agree with you.

And Supergod could take away the super-natural influences of Satan, render him ineffective, and tell Mankind,"I hope you do the right thing and follow a set of principles that further civilization. I promise not to interfere. I gave you free will and a mind, and I now give you the freedom to use them, for will or woe. Good luck!"
Er... Except that God does promise to aid the faithful, isn't that the plot of the New Testament? :confused: Maybe after you finish the parts about Lot and Job you should skip ahead a few chapters! :p