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Sunday, 12 October 2014

The Devil

Evil came from some rebellious angels who have corrupted the earth at both human level and nature level. Way before God created man he created the angels including Lucifer who were once pure holy and living in God’s presence. The Old Testament book of Ezekiel says that Lucifer was once the anointed cherub nearest to the throne of heaven before he became proud and rebelled. Like man the angels had free will and along with Lucifer some gave in to pride allowing themselves to be corrupted. They rebelled against God and became demons following Lucifer instead.

A demon means ‘inferior deity’.

The Bible gives the devil five different names: Satan, Apollyon, Belial, Lucifer and Beelzebub.

The literal Hebrew meaning of the word Beelzebub is ‘Lord of the Flies’ from which William Golding came up with the title of his famous 1954 novel.

The word ‘Satan’ is derived from the Aramaic word for an adversary.

Satan's visual image evolved from Pan, who had a crooked nose, pointed ears, goat's beard, goat's feet and horns. When Christianity was established, the former Greek and Roman gods were transformed by the church into fallen angels.

John Bunyan illustrated the powers of darkness in The Pilgrim’s Progress as lions chained on a short tether on either side of the celestial city road. Those who walk in the centre of the road (in God’s will) cannot be touched. Meanwhile those who wander onto the side of the road are torn to pieces. If we keep doing God’s will, the devil can't touch us.

In William Lorimer's translation of the New Testament into the Scottish language, only the devil speaks English.

The Faust legend originated from Johann Faust (c1480-1540) of Germany, a wandering astrologist, scholar and magician who slighted Jesus' miracles and bragged that he could do the same. He was hated and feared by Martin Luther and when he disappeared in a strange manner and was later found dead in a pile of dung, many felt his strange demise was the work of the devil. Subsequently his name became the center of a great body of legend and poetry in European literature.

The phrase“Speak of the Devil” is the shortened version of “Speak of the Devil and he doth appear. ” The term was first used in Giovanni Torriano’s Piazza Universale in 1666 where he wrote: “The English say, Talk of the Devil, and he's presently at your elbow.”

In Japan, it is illegal to name your baby Akuma, which means "devil."

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