The Devil’s Angels.
“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
We can begin to understand the visionary language used in the final book of the Bible. If the devil and Satan are personifications of sin, that is, are words used to represent sin, then what of the devil’s angels?
The word ‘angel’ comes to our language from the Greek word ‘aggelos’, and means basically ‘a messenger’. On most occasions these angels are messengers from God, but some are messengers from, and to, man himself. The devil’s angels are merely messengers of the devil, or messengers of human nature, messengers that reflect our mortality. The apostle Paul used exactly this term.
“To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me.” 2 Corinthians 12:7
When Jesus trained his small group of followers, he gave them power to heal sickness.
“When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is set before you. Heal the sick who are there … The seventy-two returned with joy and said, ‘Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.’
“He replied, ‘I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.‘ Luke 10: 8, 9, 17-19
Jesus here associates the demons (which are again equated to sickness) with satan, and the connection is logical, since sickness was one of the things introduced to mankind by the ‘fall’ of Adam from his perfect created state.
Jesus saw a time when not only sickness and disease would be abolished, but all the sin and evil summed up in the name satan would be removed. For when the devil, or satan, is destroyed, then the demons will also cease to exist. At that time, when the Kingdom of God has been established, human nature will be restored to its original state, and illness will be a thing of the past. The Book of revelation concludes with a picture of that time.
“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself shall be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21: 3, 4
What It All Means.
It is clear that the Bible speaks of the reality of satan and of devils.
But it can be seen that what the Bible pictures by these terms is significantly different to what the churches today teach regarding them. The Bible clearly teaches that we are tempted by our own lusts, and that we are individually responsible for actions when tempted. We cannot place the blame for our sins on some outside ‘being’ that tradition conjures up. “Well, it wasn’t my fault — the devil tempted me!”. The Bible never allows us to put the blame on someone else.
“all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” Romans 3: 23
Our devil is inside ourselves; it is in our minds, and in our hearts. If we accept this situation, then we can start to get our devil under control. We must ignore the powerful impulse we each have that urges us to seek our own satisfaction. Instead, we can turn our back on fleshly thinking and seek the spiritual help available from God through the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ was tempted just like we are tempted, and therefore he is able to help us
when we ask for help.
“The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15: 56, 57