The Origin of Evil
“He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning.” 1 John 3:8.NOTE.-Without the Bible, the question of the origin of evil would remain unexplained.From what time has the devil been a murderer?
“Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him.” John 8:44.What is the devil’s relationship to lying?
“When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” John 8:44.
Was Satan created sinful?
“Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.” Eze. 28:15.
NOTE.-This, and the statement in John 8:44 that he “abode not in the truth,” show that Satan was once perfect, and in the truth. Peter speaks of “the angels that sinned” (2 Peter 2:4); and Jude refers to “the angels which kept not their first estate” (Jude 6); both of which show that these angels were once in a state of sinlessness and innocence.
What further statement of Christ seems to lay the responsibility for the origin of sin upon Satan and his angels?
“Then shall He say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from Me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” Matt. 25:41.
What led to Satan’s sin, rebellion, and downfall?
“Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness.” Eze. 28:17. “Thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: . . . I will be like the Most High.” Isa. 14:13,14.
NOTE.-In a word, pride and self-exaltation led to Satan’s downfall, and for these there is no justification or adequate excuse. “Pride goeth, before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” Prov. 16:18. Hence, while we may know of the origin, cause, character, and results of evil, no good or sufficient reason or excuse can be given for it. To excuse it is to justify it; and the moment it is justified it ceases to be sin. All sin is a manifestation of selfishness in some form, and its results are the opposite of those prompted by love. The experiment of sin will result finally in its utter abandonment and banishment forever, by all created intelligences, throughout the entire universe of God. Only those who foolishly and persistently cling to sin will be destroyed with it. The wicked will then “be as though they had not been” (Obadiah 16), and the righteous shall ” shine as the brightness of the firmament,” and ” as the stars forever and ever.” Dan. 12:3. “Affliction shall not rise up the second time.” Nahum 1:9.
In contrast with the pride and self-exaltation exhibited by Satan, what spirit did Christ manifest?
“Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” Phil. 2:6-8.
After man had sinned, how did God show His love, and His willingness to forgive?
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16.
NOTE.- Inasmuch as God, who is love, who delights in mercy, and who changes not, offered pardon and granted a period of probation to man when he sinned, it is but reasonable to conclude that a like course was pursued toward the heavenly intelligences who first sinned, and that only those who persisted in sin, and took their stand in open revolt and rebellion against God and the government of heaven, were finally cast out of heaven. Rev. 12:7-9.