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disciple of Christ, who deserted him, and thereby became an enemy or adversary to him; to the unbelieving Jews, who were the adversaries of Christ, and of his religion; to false teachers, they being the enemies of truth; and to the heathen opponents of the Gospel, and persecutors of the followers of Christ; see Rev. 2: 13. It is also applied to the spirit of wickedness in man, and to the evil passions and desires of men; see Acts 5: 3, and John 13: 27.
DIABOLOS. This word is found in the Greek Testament thirty-six times. Six times in Matthew, six times in Luke, three times in John, twice in Acts, twice in Ephesians, three times in 1 Timothy, twice in 2 Timothy, once in Titus, once in Hebrews, once in James, once in 1 Peter, three times in 1 John, once in Jude, and six times in the book of Revelation. It is not found in Mark, John, Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians, Philemon, 2 Peter, nor in 2 and 3 John.
If the reader will examine Section 4 of this Chapter, he will see that the words devil and Satan are used in the New Testament as synonymous terins.
The word diabolos is translated in the common version of the New Testament thirty-three times devil, twice false accusers, and once slanderers. Had it been invariably rendered by words which properly define it, no one would ever have dreamed that it was used to signify a fallen angel. Donnegan defines this word thus: Diabolos an accuser, a calumniator. See Donnegan's Greek and English Lexicon, p. 356. We are aware that some writers say it signifies the devil; meaning a fallen angel, such as has been generally believed in; but before it can be allowed to have this signification, it must be proved that such a being exists; or, at least, that the New Testament writers believed in the existence of such a being, and applied this word to him; which we think cannot be done. This word is applied in the New Testament in the same manner that Satan is, and signifies precisely the same thing. If the reader, therefore, will examine all the texts where it occurs, and read them as if it was rendered slanderer, accuser, calumniator, opposer, enemy or adversary, he cannot fail of understanding them in their true
In closing this chapter, we will state some objections to the com
mon view of the subject, and reply to some objections against the views which we have presented.
1. The common view of the subject is absurd. It supposes sin to have originated in heaven. Now heaven is everywhere represented in the Scriptures as a holy, happy place, into which nothing sinful, unholy, or unclean can ever enter. To suppose, therefore, that sin and rebellion against God originated there, is absurd in the
2. It is contrary to experience. It supposes man to be influenced to sin by a personal devil. Now no rational man, acquainted with human nature, ever felt, or imagined that he felt, any such influence.
3. It is unphilosophical. It supposes more causes than are necessary, to account for the wickedness of man. We think the fact of man's animal nature being so closely connected with his spiritual is abundantly sufficient to account for all his sin and wickedness, without resorting to the supposition that a personal devil has any concern in the matter. We have no doubt that thousands have imagined they felt the influence of such a being. So have thousands imagined they felt the influence of witches; and this fact proves as much in one case as in the other.
4. It comes directly in contact with the plain declarations of the Bible.
It supposes sin to have been introduced into our world by a fallen angel. Whereas, the Bible declares that by one man, not by one devil, nor by one fallen angel; but "by one man, sin entered into the world, and death by sin." See Rom. 5: 12. 2d. It supposes man to be tempted by a personal devil. But when the Bible speaks out plainly on this subject, it declares that every man, yes, every man from Adam down to. latest posterity; every man is tempted, not by the devil, not by a fallen angel, but every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed." See James 1: 14, and 4: 1-4, and Prov. 1: 10.
3d. This theory supposes that the works of the devil will remain, and that he himself will exist throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity. But the Bible affirms that he himself, and all his works, shall be destroyed. Heb. 2: 14; 1 John 3: 8. Whatever this devil may be supposed to be, then, one thing is certain; he is des
tined to he completely destroyed, together with all his works. So far, therefore, as the salvation of the human race is concerned, it is a matter of no consequence whether such a being as a personal devil has any real existence or not.
We will now notice some objections to our views. It is objected,
1. That personal pronouns are applied to the devil in the Bible, and the Scriptures frequently speak of him as a real being; and represent him as talking, acting, &c.
To this we reply, that personal pronouns are applied to many inanimate things in the Bible; and oftentimes they are represented as talking, acting, &c. The earth is personified. Job 31: 38. The heavens are personified. Jer. 2: 12, 13. The sea. Job 38: 8, 9. Destruction. Job 28: 22. Death and the grave. 1 Cor. 15: 55; Job 28: 22. The hosts of heaven. Ps. 148: 1-5. The mountains and hills. Isa. 55: 12. The trees of the forest. Judges 9: 7-16. Wisdom also is personified. Proverbs, chapters 8 and 9; also, Prov. 1: 20-33. Seeing so many things are personified in the Scriptures, is it any marvel that evil, that wicked men, that the lusts and passions of men, should be personified? So far from it, it is just what we should be led to expect.
2. It is said, If the idea of a personal devil and an endless hell be given up, our preachers will have nothing to preach about. We frankly confess, we know of many preachers who, in such a case, would lose a principal topic of conversation and pulpit declamation. But then it must be confessed that, if in reality no such being as a personal devil exists, the less that is said about him the better. And if these preachers can find no better subjects to discourse upon, they had better abandon the ministry, and be silent.
3. It was remarked by a certain old lady, that the existence of a devil was perfectly clear; else how could mankind make a picture of him? We know there have been a great many pictures of the devil, and we also know that a great many pictures of things exist in the human imagination, and are even put upon paper, which have no existence in reality. Mankind are extremely fond of pictures; and perhaps some will esteem it a hard case that we should attempt to rob them of their beautiful pictures of the devil.
In conclusion we remark, that until the facts and objections stated
in this section, against the existence of a personal devil, are satisfactorily accounted for or removed, we must continue to believe that such a being exists only in the imaginations of the ignorant, the weak, and the credulous; and that the idea of his existence ought to be abandoned by every rational man.
All the passages in the OLD TESTAMENT wherein reference is had to DEMONS.
Deut. 32: 17. They sacrificed unto devils (demons), not to God; to gods whom they knew not, to new gods that came newly up, whom your fathers feared not.
Psa. 96 5. For all the gods of the nations are idols (daimonia); but the Lord made the heavens.
Psa. 106 37. Yea, they sacrificed their sons and their daughters unto devils (daimoniois), and shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons, and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan.
Isa. 13: 21. But wild beasts of the desert shall be there (in Babylon); and their houses shall be full of doleful creatures; and owls shall dwell there, and satyrs (daimonia) shall dance there.
Isa. 34: 14. The wild beasts of the desert shall also meet with the wild beasts of the island, and the satyr (demonia) shall cry to his fellow; the screech-owl shall also rest there (in Idumea), and find for herself a place of rest.
Isa. 65: 11. But ye are they that forsake the Lord, that forget my holy mountain, that prepare a table for that troop (daimonia), and that furnish the drink offering unto that number.
All the passages in the NEW TESTAMENT wherein allusion is made to DEMONS.
1 Cor. 10: 20, 21. But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils (demons), and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils (demons). Ye cannot drink