Mark 8:27-33; Matthew 16:21-23, Sometimes Satanas means a tempter, figuratively (5/29/13)
By now you are saying, “Enough already! I knew all that! I knew that Satan = Devil.” True, but maybe you didn’t know that satan
. I’m even willing to bet that most of us didn’t know that satan
is usually translated
as “adversary” in the Old Testament. From here on out, though, I expect that a lot of study tips are going to be news to you. Why? Because a lot of what we’re going to cover was news to me and my Greek study buddy.
Whenever our Sunday School fund has more money than we expect, one of our members says that we have a “Secret Santa.” Now, she does not mean that the actual Santa Claus is putting money into our class’s budget. She means that someone is acting like
Santa Claus by giving us an extra gift.
In the same way, when Jesus says to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan,” he does not mean that Peter is the actual Satan. He means that Peter is acting like
Satan. It’s important that when Jesus gives his reason, he doesn’t say, “You are like Satan because you are evil.” Instead, he says, “You are like Satan because you are thinking human thoughts.” When we encourage a friend not to do what God wants our friend to do, we are thinking human thoughts. We know that Satan is an adversary and a tempter, and sometimes we can act like an adversary by tempting our friend to do evil, just as Satan would. Do God’s word, not Satan’s work.
From the International Standard Version (courtesy of the ISV Foundation):
Mark 8:27 Then Jesus and his disciples set out for the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he was asking his disciples, "Who do people say I am?"
1 Timothy 3:1-11; 2 Timothy 3:1-4; Titus 2:1-3, Diabolos can mean those who act like the Devil (5/30/13)
28 They answered him, "Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, and still others one of the prophets."
29 Then he began to ask them, "But who do you say I am?" Peter answered him, "You are the Messiah!"
30-31 Jesus sternly ordered them not to tell anyone about him. Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man would have to suffer a great deal and be rejected by the elders, the high priests, and the scribes. Then he would be killed, but after three days he would rise again.
32 He was speaking about this matter quite openly. Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.
33 But turning and looking at his disciples, Jesus rebuked Peter, saying, "Get behind me, Satanas Satan, because you're not thinking God's thoughts but human thoughts!"
Matthew 16:21 From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples that he would have to go to Jerusalem and suffer a great deal because of the elders, the high priests, and the scribes. Then he would be killed, but on the third day he would be raised.
22 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, "God be merciful to you, Lord! This must never happen to you!"
23 But Jesus turned and told Peter, "Get behind me, Satanas Satan! You are an offense to me, because you are not thinking God's thoughts but human thoughts!"
One way we can act like our adversary Satan is to tempt other people to do evil. We know also that the Devil is a liar and a slanderer, so a second way we can act like Satan is by lying or gossiping. I’ll bet you had no idea that gossip is such a serious sin that people who commit it are called diabolos
. They aren’t called the
Devil, but in Greek they are called devils
three times in the letters of Paul. Keep in mind Thumper Rabbit’s Rule: “If you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say nuthin’ at all.”
From the International Standard Version (courtesy of the ISV Foundation) with additions from other translations:
1Timothy 3:1-3 This is a trustworthy saying: The one who would an elder be, a noble task desires he. Therefore, an elder must be blameless, the husband of one wife, stable, sensible, respectable, hospitable to strangers, and teachable.
John 6:61-71, Diabolos can mean those who act like the Devil. (5/31/13)
3-5 He must not drink excessively or be a violent person, but instead be gentle. He must not be argumentative or love money. He must manage his own family well and have children who are submissive and respectful in every way. For if a man does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God's church?
6-7 He must not be a recent convert, so that he won't become arrogant and fall into the diabolos devil's condemnation. He must be well thought of by outsiders, so he doesn't fall into disgrace and the trap set for him by the diabolos devil.
8-10 Ministers, too, must be serious. They must not be two-faced, addicted to wine, or greedy for money. They must hold firmly to the secret of the faith with clear consciences. But they must first be tested. Then, if they prove to be blameless, they may become ministers.
11 Their wives must also be serious. They must not be diabolos gossips, but instead be stable and trustworthy in everything.
Contemporary English, Good News, God’s Word: gossip.
King James, Revised Version, American Standard, English Standard: slanderers.
Bible in Basic English: saying no evil of others.
2 Timothy 3:1 You must realize, however, that in the last days difficult times will come.
2-4 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, unfeeling, uncooperative, diabolos slanderous, degenerate, brutal, hateful of what is good, traitors, reckless, conceited, and lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.
Titus 2:1-2 But as for you, teach what is consistent with healthy doctrine. Older men are to be sober, serious, sensible, and sound in faith, love, and endurance.
3 Likewise, older women are to show their reverence for God by their behavior. They are not to be diabolos gossips or addicted to alcohol, but to be examples of goodness.
Satan is the Father of Lies, so we act like Satan when we gossip about or slander another person. Satan is the Tempter, so we act like Satan when we tempt other people to do wrong. And Satan is the great Adversary, so we act like Satan when we betray those who trust us. I’ve always said, “I don’t need Satan, because I get into plenty of trouble all on my own.” As it turns out, Satan relies on me to do his work for him, whenever I gossip, tempt, or betray!
From the International Standard Version (courtesy of the ISV Foundation):
70 Jesus answered them, "I chose you, the Twelve, didn't I? Yet one of you is a diabolos devil."
More of The Big Lie
The Son of God and the Father of Lies
The OT satan is always an adversary, but not always the Devil.
The Hebrew satan is translated various ways.
In the New Testament, both satanas and diabolos normally refer to the Devil.
Sometimes satanas and diabolos are used figuratively to refer to someone acting like the Devil.
Poneros – Evil in the New Testament
Demons cause sickness, not sin.
Sometimes Satan and demons cooperate with each other.
Neither Baalzebub nor Lucifer is a Biblical name for the Devil.
Belial means "worthless," and once it's used as a nickname for the Devil.
Satan's job description: Temptation and Lies
Our job description: Resist him!
Copyright 2013 by Regina L. Hunter. All rights reserved. This page has been prepared for the web site by RPB.
71 Now he was speaking about Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, because this man was going to betray him, even though he was one of the Twelve.
Opinions expressed on this page are solely those of the
author, Regina Hunter, and may or may not be shared by the sponsors or the
Bible-study participants. Thanks to the
Holy Spirit for any useful ideas presented here, and thanks to all the readers
for their support and enthusiasm. All
errors are, of course, the sole responsibility of the author.
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