Is Satan real? Or is he a representation of evil? Is Satan a being or is he just an influence or a force?
A while ago I had a conversation with an individual regarding the existence of the Evil. This gentleman asked me, “How can anyone in this day and age believe that there is a real being name Satan. A being in a red suit with a pitchfork”.
I asked this gentleman if he believed that there is evil in the world. He said, “I don’t deny that there is an evil-force at work in the world, but I don’t believe there is a Devil or Satan”.
In May 2001 GALLUP asked Americans if the devil is something they believe in, something they’re not sure about, or something they don’t believe in.
68% said they believe in the Devil.
20% said they don’t believe in the Devil.
12% said they aren’t sure.
In an article by GALLUP in February 25, 2003 entitled “The Devil and the Demographic Details” the author gives a belief in the Devil by denomination and political party.
Believe Not sure don’t believe
Catholics 70% 13% 17%
Protestants 79% 9% 12%
Republicans 79% 9% 12%
Democrats 67% 11% 21%
I wonder, if we were to take a survey today would the percentages still be the same or would it be less? I for one believe that Satan is a real being and not just an evil force or influence.
Today there are many misconceptions regarding religion. One of those misconceptions is that Satan is a guy with a red suit and a pitchfork. These ideas arose in the middle ages when people believed in the reality of Satan.
They believed that Satan was a very proud being and one of the ways to get rid of a proud being is by making fun of him. So they drew caricature of him wearing a red suit and a pitch fork. But no one believed that was the way Satan looked.
A few generations later, they would look back and think what our forefathers believed in!! The problem is in the fact that they forgot the reasons behind those drawings and thought this is silly. This is how we got the red suit and the pitchfork.
But is Evil a force or a being? Forces are neither good nor bad. They don’t have any morality attached to them. If we were to get an earthquake, we wouldn’t say there was an evil force behind that earthquake. Or if we get a hurricane we wouldn’t think that hurricane is evil. Forces are neutral they don’t have any morality attached to them.
For something to be Evil it has to have a personality. Out of that personality proceeds intent or will that manifests itself in actions and based on our standard of good and evil we call those actions evil or good. Good and evil have to have a source, out of that source or (personality) proceeds good or evil actions.
This is how we decide if someone is good or bad. We judge their actions and based on their actions we make a judgment whether they are a good person or an evil person. But behind their actions are their will or intent, and behind their will is their thoughts or personality which gives rise to their actions. As a result I believe that both good and evil proceed from beings. Therefore I believe in a real literal Satan who rebelled against God and became the chief antagonist of God and man.
May the Lord be with you all