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8. What are their employments ?
Ist. They behold the face of God in heaven, adore the divine perfections, study every revelation he makes of himself in providence and redemption, and are perfectly blessed in his presence and service.—Matt. xviii., 10 ; Rev. v., 11; 1 Pet. i., 12.
2d. God employs them as his instruments in administering the affairs of his providence, Gen. xxviii., 12 ; Dan. x., 13. (1.) The law." was ordained by angels,” Gal. iii., 19; Acts vii., 53 ; Heb. ii., 2. (2.) They are instruments of good to God's people, Heb. i., 14 ; Acts xii, 7; Ps. xci., 10–12. (3.) They execute judgment upon God's enemies, Acts xii., 23; 2 Kings xix., 35; 1 Chron. xxi., 16. (4.) They will officiate in the final judgment, in separating the good from the bad, in gathering the elect, and in bearing them up to meet the Lord in the air, Matt. xiii., 30-39 ; xxiv., 31 ; 1 Thess. iv., 17.
9. How are apparitions of angels to be accounted for ?
See Num. xxii., 31, etc. What was apparent to the senses were doubtless miraculously constituted bodies assumed for the occasion for the purpose of holding intercourse with man through his bodily senses, and then laid aside.
10. What are the names by which Satan is distinguished, anit what is their import?
Satan, which signifies adversary, Luke x., 18. The Devil (dáßolos always occurs in the singular) signifying slanderer, Rev. xx., 2 ; Apollyon, which means destroyer, and Abbadon, Rev. ix., 11 ; Beelzebub, the prince of devils, from the god of the Ekronites, chief among the heathen divinities, all of which the Jews regarded as devils, 2 Kings, i., 2; Matt. xii.. 24; Angel of the Bottomless Pit, Rev., ix., 11; Prince of the World, John xii., 31 ; Prince of Darkness, Eph. vi., 12; A Roaring Lion, 1 Pet. v., 8; a Sinner from the Beginning, 1 John iii., 8; Accuser, Rev. xii., 10; Belial, 2 Cor., vi., 15; Deceiver, Rev. xx., 10; Dragon, Rev. xi., 7; Liar and Murderer, John viii., 44 ; Leviathan, Is., xxvii., 1; Lucifer, Is. xiv., 12; Serpent, Is. xxvii., 1 ; Tormentor, Matt. xvii., 34; God of this World, 2 Cor. iv, 4; he that hath the Power of Death, Heb. ii., 14.See Cruden's Concordance.
11. How may it be proved that Satan is a personal being, and not a mere personification of evil?
Throughout all the various books of Scripture Satan is always consistently spoken of as a person, and personal attributes are predicated of him. Such passages as Matt. iv., 1-11, and John viii., 44, are decisive.
12. What do the Scriptures teach concerning the relation of Satan to other evil spirits and to our world ?
Other evil spirits are called “his angels,” Matt. xxv., and he is called “Prince of Devils,” Matt. ix., 34; and “Prince of the powers of the Air,” and “Prince of Darkness,” Eph, vi., 12. This indicates that he is the master spirit of evil.
His relation to this world is indicated by the history of the Fall, 2 Cor. xi., 3; Rev. xii., 9, and by such expressions as “God of this World,” 2 Cor. iv., 4; and “Spirit that worketh in the children of disobedience," Eph. ii., 2; wicked men are said to be his children, 1 John iii., 10; he blinds the minds of those that believe not and leads them captive at his will, 2 Tim. ii., 26; he also pains, harasses and tempts God's true people as far as is permitted for their ultimate good, Luke xxii., 31 ; 2 Cor. xii., 7; 1 Thess. ii., 18.
13. What are the terms by which fallen spirits are designated ?
The Greek word ó diáBohoç, the devil, is in the original applied only to Beelzebub. Other evil spirits are called daipoves, dæmons, Mark V., 12 (translated devils) ; unclean spirits, Mark v., 13;
; angels of the devil, Matt. xxv., 41 ; principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this world, Eph. vi., 12; angels that sinned, 2 Pet. ii., 4 ; angels that kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, Jude vi ; lying spirits, 2 Chron, xviii. 22.
14. What power or agency over the bodies and souls of men is ascribed to them ?
Satan, like all other finite beings, can only be in one place at a time ; yet all that is done by his agents being attributed to him, he appears to be practically ubiquitous.
It is certain that at times at least they have exercised an inexplicable influence over the bodies of men, yet that influence is entirely subject to God's control, Job. ii., 7; Luke xiii., 16 ; Acts x., 38. They have caused and aggravated diseases, and excited appetites and passions, 1 Cor. v., 5. Satan, in some sense, has the power of death, Heb. ii., 14.
With respect to the souls of men, Satan and his angels are utterly destitute of any power either to change the heart or to coerce the will, their influence being simply moral, and exercised in the way of deception, suggestion, and persuasion. The descriptive phrases applied by the Scriptures to their working are such as—" the deceivableness of unrighteousness," "power, signs, lying wonders,” 2 Thess. ii., 9, 10; he“ transforms himself into an angel of light,” 2 Cor. xi., 14. If he can deceive or persuade he uses “ wiles,” Eph. vi., 11 ; "snares," 1 Tim. iii., 7; “
7 Rev. ï., 24; he “blinds the mind,” 2 Cor. iv., 4; “leads captive the will," 2 Tim. ii., 26; and so “deceives the whole world,” Rev. xii., 9.
If he can not persuade he uses “ fiery darts,” Eph. vi., 16; and “buffetings,” 2 Cor. xii., 7.
As examples of his influence in tempting men to sin the Scriptures cite the case of Adam, Gen. iii.; of David, 1 Chron. xxi., 1 ; of Judas, Luke xxii., 3 ; Ananias and Saphira, Acts v., 3; and the temptation of our blessed Lord, Matt. iv.
15. Where do they reside, and what is the true interpretation of Eph. ii., 2, and vi., 12 ?
These passages simply declare that evil spirits belong to the unseen spiritual world, and not to our mundane system. Nothing is taught us in Scripture as to the place of their residence, further than that they originally dwelt in and fell from heaven, that they now have access to men on earth, and that they will be finally sealed up in the lake of fire prepared for them, Rev. xx., 10; Matt. xxv. 41.
16. By what terms were those possessed by evil spirits designated ?
They are called “demoniacs,” translated possessed with devils, Matt. iv., 24; “having the spirit of an unclean devil,” Matt. xv., 22 ; "oppressed of the devil,” Acts x., 38; “lunatics," Matt. xvii., 15.
17. What arguments are urged by those who regard the demoniacs mentioned in the New Testament as simply diseased or deranged ?
That we can not discriminate between the effects of demoniacal possession and disease. That precisely the same symptoms have, in other cases, been treated as disease and sured.
That, like witchcraft, the experience of such possessions has been confined to the most ignorant ages of the world.
They argue further that this doctrine is inconsistent with clearly revealed principles. 1st. That the souls of dead men go immediately either to heaven or hell. 20. That fallen angels are
2d already shut up in chains and darkness in expectation of the final judgment, 2 Pet. ii., 4; Jude vi.
They attempt to explain away the language of Christ and his apostles upon this subject by affirming, that as it was no part of their design to instruct men in the true science of nature or disease, they conformed their language on such subjects to the prevalent opinions of the people they addressed, calling diseases by the popular name, without intending thereby to countenance the theory of the nature of the disease, out of which the name originated. Just as we now call crazed people "lunatics,” without believing in the influence of the moon upon them.-Kitto’s Bib. Ency.
18. How may it be proved that the demoniacs of the New Testament were really possessed of evil spirits ?
The simple narratives of all the evangelists put it beyond peradventure that Christ and his apostles did believe, and wished others to believe, that the demoniacs were really possessed with devils.
They distinguish between possession and disease, Mark i., 32; Luke vi., 17, 18. The “dæmons," as distinct from the possessed," spoke
« (Mark v., 12), were addressed, commanded and rebuked by Christ, Mark i., 25, 34; ix., 25; Matt. viii., 32 ; xvii., 18. Their desires, requests and passions are distinguished from those of the possessed, Dlatt. viii., 31 ; Mark ix., 26, etc. The number of dæmons in one person is mentioned, Mark xvi., 9. They went out of the “possessed" into the swine, Luke viii., 32.