I am not sure if this would be a book topic or not. But I think there is great confusion in the world today about the devil. Many do not believe that he exists as a living entity. I have always had questions about his origination. If God's will is always done in heaven, how was Satan able to reply defiantly "I will not serve. And how was he able to influence so many other spirits to follow him. And there are many questions about his existence today. Does he exist only on earth? Does he exist outside of time? Does he know the future? Our future? Since he is a spirit and we are physical, can he affect us physically? It may or may not be a book, but I think it is definitely a topic that could use some theological truth and clarification.
Q -- If God's will is always done in heaven, how was Satan able to reply defiantly "I will not serve.
When God created the angels, they were all sinless, like Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden. However, none of the angels at that point had the Beatific Vision of God. They dwelt in the "heaven" of the spiritual realm, not the "the heaven of the heavens" where all have the Beatific Vision. God's will is always done in Heaven itself because all know God through the Beatific Vision and all are united to God in love. The angels were able to fall because they did not have the Beatific Vision.
Q -- And how was Satan able to influence so many other spirits to follow him.
The angels were tested by being shown God's plan to become a man in Jesus Christ. They were then asked to worship Jesus Christ. But angelic nature is greater than human nature, because angels are pure spirit, whereas humans are partly base matter and part spirit. Some angels refused to worship Jesus Christ out of pride. Satan was the first to refuse to worship, but his example influenced many other angels to commit the same sin.
Q -- Does Satan exist only on earth?
Satan can move freely in the world (the universe). But he is obsessed with harming humanity because God became a human being, rather than an angel. He wishes to harm humanity because we are the reason that God became man.
Q -- Does Satan exist outside of time?
No. The fallen angels are trapped in time. The holy angels dwell now in the Heaven of the Beatific Vision, so they share in the eternity of God. The holy angels can be present to different time periods, in accord with the will of God.
Q -- Does Satan know the future?
None of the fallen angels know the future. All the holy angels and blessed souls in heaven know the future, in so far as God wills, via the Beatific Vision.
Q -- Since Satan is a spirit and we are physical, can he affect us physically?
Both fallen angels and holy angels are able to affect the material world. God prevents the fallen angels from doing all the harm that they might wish to do.
In John 5:7, a certain pool in Jerusalem would be stirred by the action of holy angels, and whoever entered the pool after the stirring of the waters was healed. So holy angels can have an effect on material things.
Then in the Book of Job, Satan does harm to Job's family and their property. So fallen angels can also have an effect on material things.
I'm postponing this project, the weekly Catholic Planet reader, until January. I need to finish a book or two between now and then (hopefully).
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