Ultimately, Satan and his demonic followers are destined to fail. Their power was defeated at Jesus’ cross, and their presence will be obliterated when God restores heaven and earth. John 12:31 | Revelation 20:10 Satan is a powerful force of evil, but nothing compared to God and his goodness.
As we surrender to Jesus, we can trust that
he will protect us from the plots of Satan: physically, emotionally and spiritually. We know that the Spirit living in us is greater than any spirit or person in the world. 1 John 4:4
Our job is to stand firm against the devil. Ephesians 6:11 | 1 Peter 5:8-9 If we ask him, God will give us the will and power to resist the devil’s temptations, strengthen and equip us to withstand his attacks. James 4:7 | Luke 10:18-20 | Romans 16:20 | Ephesians 6:11-18
We don’t need to fight for victory. Jesus has already defeated Satan through his death and resurrection. Instead, we fight from victory. We are simply holding the ground already won in our lives, already graciously given to us.
God also created other spirits, called angels, made to worship God and do his work in heaven and on earth. They are sent as ‘ministering spirits’ to care for the people who will receive salvation, Hebrews 1:14 and protect God’s people. Psalm 91:11
Angels are not chubby, naked toddlers lounging on clouds. They usually appear on earth in human form, and often create fear or awe in people that meet them. Angels are superior to us in power and knowledge, Hebrews 2:6-7 but they are inferior to God. They are honoured creatures, but not to be worshipped – like us, they exist to worship God. Colossians 2:18 Even curiosity about angels is not helpful if it distracts us from pursuing God.
There are also evil spiritual beings. Accounts in the Bible are often interpreted that these were not created evil by God, but were created as angels. They became ‘fallen angels’ when there was a great rebellion in heaven, led by Satan (also known as the devil or Lucifer), a supernatural being who is the enemy of God, people, and good. Revelation 12:3-4
The Bible hints that Satan was once an angel of God in a position of honour in heaven, but became proud and sought to take the throne of God for himself. So God removed him from his position. Isaiah 14:12 | Ezekiel 28:11-19
Since the rebellion Satan has deceived, accused, tormented and tempted people. He began with his deception of Adam and Eve, God’s first created people. 2 Corinthians 11:3 | Genesis 3:1-7 He tricked them into forfeiting their special relationship with God and their role in creation by following his lead of rebellion against God.
Satan continues to lust for God’s position, and seeks to divert the human heart towards him in worship, rather than towards God. Satan's evil is the opposite of God's goodness, but he is not God's equal. Satan’s purpose is to steal, kill and destroy, but Jesus came to give us abundant life. John 10:10 We can see the havoc caused by Satan and his workers (called demons) in human behaviour, sickness and torment.
Through our rebellion, Satan gained the power of death – a power that has been broken by Jesus’ death and resurrection. Hebrews 2:14 Satan now devotes himself to robbing humans of the freedom available to them by attempting to hide and distort God’s good news, so that they will reject salvation. 2 Thessalonians 2:9