A few weeks ago, I met a lady who saw my cross and snickered. Soon enough, she asked if I was a believer or if my cross was just a fashion statement. When I told her I loved Jesus, she said to me “Well, I don’t believe in God”. When I asked why not, she said “I can’t believe in a Being that would allow Satan on earth. Tell me this, if God is good, then why allow Satan access to us in the first place”.
Good question I said. It seems that you know something of God. Yes, she said. I was raised church but I have now moved beyond all that. I don’t believe in God anymore. I asked if she would give me a shot at an answer. She said I would be wasting my time. I told her I would anyway.
Below is the gist of what I discussed with her (It is included in the book: No Victory Without Faith)
Though the Bible does not explicitly say, it is not far-fetched to believe that Satan’s unhappiness with God reached a crescendo when God decided to create man in His image and made him the ruler of the earth. Satan, who was never satisfied with leading a third of the angels of heaven, but was hungry for more power and was tempted to overthrow God, looked at the earth with longing eyes as God made it.
He must have said to himself, “Finally, I am going to get a place to call my own and rule over. I am now going to be like God. It is about time God came to His senses. He knows I have been eyeing His throne and He has surely seen it. So He has decided to create the earth and give it to me. Finally, I will have my own place!”
Satan so wanted the earth that he had earlier tried to kill the child that was born to rule all the hosts of the earth beforehand (Revelations 12:4).
Now that the earth was being formed by the Word of God, he was sure that his time had come! When Satan heard that man was being made in the image of God – the image of love, faith, and authority – enough was enough. He must have said to his belligerent self,
“Is it not enough that I have to serve God, now I have to serve man? Why should I have to serve a being that was created after me? He does not care about me at all. Why not just place me and my angels on the earth to rule? Why not give me what He knows I want?”
Satan was outraged! So he (who is called the accuser of the brethren) approached the throne of grace and brought an accusation against God. He gave God a piece of his and accused Him of being unjust and uncaring. Of course, God knew the character of Satan and knew the content of his dead heart. In turn, Satan in his blind ambition thought he was making a good case to God. In truth, all he did was reveal the extent to which pride and greed had consumed him. He revealed that he had no ounce of love but was filled with evil. (Note: Evil sacrifices all things to achieve its self-seeking end). God could and would not allow such a creature to have dominion. For God to have allowed that would have made God unloving. Furthermore, the end of such a rule would be pandemonium for the creatures subjected to Satan’s rule.
Since God is holy and without blemish, Satan was no longer fit to live in the presence of God – once the iniquity of pride, greed, and self-seeking was found in him (see Ezekiel 28:14- 17). After this episode, God had to do something with Satan. Being merciful, God decided not to destroy Satan and his co conspirators (a third of the angels of heaven) – the price that his iniquity deserved. Instead, He decided in His goodness to banish Satan and his gang to the earth!
In making this decision, God executed both justice and mercy at the same time. First, He was loving and merciful in that He did not destroy Satan (His own creation). Wow! That God would show even Satan mercy reveals how big God’s heart is towards all creation. Second, He was just in that He punished Satan by banishing him to the earth – away from His presence.
Now, He not only banished him away from His presence, He banished him into the presence of man. Since man had been given rulership and dominion over all things on earth, God in effect made Satan subject to the rule of man.
“I cast you to the ground (earth), I laid you before kings (men), That they might behold (see, discern, take heed of) you” – Ezekiel 28:17b
In other words, God said to Satan, “I see that you do not like Me because I created man. I also see that you do not like man because he is created in My image. Well, you will now be subjected to the rule of the creation that you revile so much for absolutely no reason. I will not mete out the destroy your sin deserves just yet. You do not like My rule you say! Well, I will let man rule over you!”
Instead of counting his lucky stars and thanking God for sparing him from destruction, Satan exploded with anger. Instead of accepting God’s judgment, he started a war in heaven and tried to force his way into power. Thankfully, Michael and his host of angels were able to defeat Satan and his gang (see Revelations 12:7:8). So Satan was booted out of heaven kicking and screaming! He landed on the earth having great anger towards both God and man (see Revelations 12:12).
So why did God banish Satan to the earth? He did it to punish Satan stripping him of his former glory and to subject him to the rule of the creation he hated so much.
She said she had not heard that before. Long story short, we proceeded to talk about this blog and she said she would visit. I hope she is finding answers. I hope I planted a seed on good ground that day.