Is it, Satan, Lucifer, The Devil, Daemons, The Adversary, The Accuser?
Who or what is he, or it, or whatever it is?
Satan is a Hebrew word found 27 times in the Hebrew text of the Bible (Tanach). 10 times with out the definite article “Ha” Hebrew for “the”, and 17 times with the definite article. The Hebrew word “satan” typically translates to English as “adversary” or “accuser”. If someone were my adversary in Hebrew they would be my “satan”. Satan is not a given name, but it is a noun that describes someone. An example may be the prosecutor or plaintiff at a trial, the prosecutor or plaintiff is not a persons name, but describes their purpose at the trial.
NOTE: שׂטן sâṭân – saw-tawn’ an opponent; especially (with the article prefixed) satan, adversary,
The following are the Scriptures with out the definite article – “the”:
1. Numbers 22:22 “and the angel of the Lord stood in the way for an adversary against him.” (a satan against him)
2. Numbers 22:32 “behold, I went out to withstand thee,” (withstand thee is translated for lesatan), instead of “I came out to be an adversary (a satan) ……”
3. 1 Samuel 29:4 The Philistines say “lest he (David) be an adversary against us” (be a satan against us)
4. 2 Samuel 19:22 David says: (you sons of Zeruaiah) should this day be adversaries (plural) unto me?” (this day be satans unto me?)
5. 1 Kings 5:4 Solomon writes to Hiram: “there is neither adversary nor evil occurrent.” (neither satan nor evil occurrent)
6. 1 Kings 11:14 “And the Lord stirred up an adversary unto Solomon, Hadad the Edomite” (stirred up a satan unto Solomon,…)
7. 1 Kings 11:23 “And God stirred him up an adversary, Rezon the son of Eliadah” (stirred him up a satan,….)
8. 1 Kings 11:25 “And he (Rezon) was an adversary to Israel all the days of Solomon” (was a satan to Israel…)
9. 1 Chronicles 21:1 “Satan stood up against Israel” (An adversary stood up against Israel)
10. Psalm 109:6b “and let Satan stand at his right hand” (and let an accuser stand at..)
The seventeen occurrences of satan with the definite article are 14 instances in Job 1 & 2 and three instances in Zechariah 3:1-2.
1. And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. 2. And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? KJV
(Note: the translator left the definite article out.)
These verses could also read:
1. And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and the adversary standing at his right hand to resist him. 2. And the LORD said unto the adversary, The LORD rebuke the adversary; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?
The following 14 occurrences are in Job with the definite article “the” preceding satan. Again note the translator leaves the definite article out.
From Job chapters 1 and 2:
6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan (the adversary) came also among them. 7 And the Lord said unto Satan (the adversary), Whence comest thou? Then Satan (the adversary) answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. 8 And the Lord said unto Satan (the adversary), Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? 9 Then Satan (the adversary) answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? 10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. 11 But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face. 12 And the Lord said unto Satan (the adversary), Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan (the adversary) went forth from the presence of the Lord.
2:1 – 7
1 Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan (the adversary) came also among them to present himself before the Lord. 2 And the Lord said unto Satan (the adversary), From whence comest thou? And Satan (the adversary) answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. 3 And the Lord said unto Satan (the adversary), Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause. 4 And Satan (the adversary) answered the Lord, and said, Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life. 5 But put forth thine hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face. 6 And the Lord said unto Satan (the adversary), Behold, he is in thine hand; but save his life. 7 So went Satan (the adversary) forth from the presence of the Lord, and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown. (KJV)
Keep in mind that satan is not a name, it is a Hebrew descriptive word meaning, an adversary, or an accuser. The translator’s in these preceding verses could have correctly translated these verses as an adversary or an accuser. Keep in mind that Hebrew does not have upper and lower case letters, so not translating the word satan to adversary and capitalizing the first letter, like you would for a name presents some questions: Why would a translator do this? Do they have an agenda? Why would a translator translate the word “satan” as adversary in some verses, and leave it as satan in others? And then have it appear as a name by capitalizing the first letter?
By using the Hebrew word and capitalizing the first letter, gives this word the appearance of possibly being someones name (Satan), who is having a conversation with God. But if we read the verses in the context of not being an angels name, but a description of the assignment given to this angel, it takes on a different context. The context here is that God is assigning a particular assignment for this angel to accomplish. That assignment is to test Job, by being an adversary to him. God presents the test for the angel to carry out, not the other way around.
God speaking to the angle (messenger): “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is non other like him in the earth, a perfect upright man, one that fears God, and abstains from evil?” Job1:8
Lucifer (aka – the shining one)
NOTE: From the Hebrew; Isa 14:12:
פלת משׁמים הילל בן־שׁחר נגדעת לארץ חולשׁ על־גוים׃
הילל – Heylel – The morning star
There is only one place in the Christian Bible, from Isaiah 14:12 where many Christians derive the name “Lucifer”. This name is assigned to the adversary, and many Christians believe that he was cast out if heaven along with one third of the angels that chose to follow him (Rev 12:4).
From these two verses the Christian doctrine was established; that satan/Lucifer was cast out of heaven, along with one third of the angels. These angels are referred to as fallen angles, and sometimes referred to as demons.
The Latin word “Lucifer” is only found in once place in the Christian Old Testament. The word lucifer was taken from the Latin Vulgate and used by the translators instead of translating to English. It is usually understood as referring to satan, in the verse from Isaiah 14:12.
“How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations.”
Many interpret this verse as referring to Satan being cast out of heaven – ie. “thou fallen from heaven”.
What is the context of Isaiah 14:12? Learning the context of a verse is usually obtained by looking at earlier verses. In this case by reading verse four of the same chapter, as follows:
4. that you will take up this taunt against the king of Babylon, and say, “How the oppressor has ceased And how fury has ceased!
When looking at the context of this chapter, the reader will discover that verse 12 is referring to the king of Babylon, King Nebuchadnezzar. King Nebuchadnezzar thought of himself as a god, as Venus who is the morning star. The word Lucifer is a Latin word that means “morning star'”. When considering these facts we can examine verse 12 as follows:
How art thou fallen from heaven, O shining one, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground , which didst weaken the nations.
The belief in two opposite forces, one good and the other evil, that battle against each other is called dualism. In Christianity the evil force is referred to as “the god of this world”, referring to , satan, the devil, or Lucifer.
2 Corinthians 4:4
4. in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. NAS
The Jewish belief is that there is only one God!
Hear O Israel the Lord our God, the Lord is one.
Yet I have been the LORD your God Since the land of Egypt; And you were not to know any god except Me, For there is no savior besides Me.
“Thus you will know that I am in the midst of Israel, And that I am the LORD your God, And there is no other; And My people will never be put to shame.
Isaiah 44:6-8, 44:24, 45:5-7, 45:18-19, 45:21-22, 46:5, 9, 48:11
1 Chron. 17:20
The Holy Scripture tells us that good and evil were created by God:
See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;.. KJV
I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things…. NAS
The belief of good verses evil is called dualism. Dualism typically says that there are two gods one that is promoting good, while the other is disrupting our lives by trying to bring evil into every aspect. These two forces are constantly at odds with each other. An example of this belief is Zoroastrianism. Zoroastrianism is thousands of years old, and was very popular in Persia. Paul promoted this concept in his letter to the Corinthians.
2 Corinthians 4:4
4.in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. NAS
The Christian view is from a dualism perspective of two forces at battle, one is good and the other evil. The good force is God the creator of heaven and earth, and the evil force is Satan, also referred to as Lucifer. The belief is that Lucifer was once an angel in heaven and he became rebellious, so God kicked him out of heaven along with a third of his fellow angels called demons. And that some day in the future the God of heaven will overcome Satan or Lucifer (the god of this world) and send him to Hell, where he will be locked up for ever.
The Jewish view is monotheistic, there is only one force or only one God. God created both good and evil, so that mankind has a choice either to serve God or not. The word satan is a Hebrew descriptive word meaning adversary or accuser, thus the angel or messenger of God was sent to accomplish a task working in an adversarial function, not in opposition to God. A test or when we are tempted are good examples of having to choose good or evil, allowing us to have free will. Each person has a evil inclination, that God created, allowing us to choose good or evil, either to serve Him or not to. As we study His Holy Word and choose what is righteous we draw closer to Him and the evil inclination becomes weaker. As a side note an example of getting rid of a demon would be, ridding oneself or overcoming of a evil inclination that continues to tempt oneself.
by Jim Behnke,