This will be a long text but have no fear, I will try to lighten it with pictures. 🙂
It’s hard to talk about facts when it comes to religious texts and this will not be different.
This text is about the devil, Diavolo, Lucifer, Diablo, Satan, The horned one and all the other names.
Religion tells us that there is a thing that is so evil, it has taken form and shape.
The shapes has, to say the least, been various.
Oh, and if you think the snake was the devil, you are wrong.
Lets take a little stroll down mythology lane…
The descriptions of this supreme evil has changed over the years. Horns, hooves, goat-features, bats wings, red or fiery, claws, black, pitch fork, tail… well, you’ve seen the movies.
I can tell you right now, if you want to read about the devil, don’t read the bible!
It’s hard to find anything in the books about this guy.
And again, it’s not the serpent in Genesis (chapter three),
The first mention of the word “satan”, in the bible, is not in the form of a name, it’s a noun from a verb meaning primarily to, “obstruct” or “oppose”.
Numbers 22:22, 1 Samuel 29:4, Psalms 109:6. In the text, the word “satan” is used in the meaning “He came down and sataned him”, about an angel who was protecting Israel.
The next time, it’s in the Book of Job. We get to meet the thing we recognize as the devil in his best party mood.
“All Job’s possessions are destroyed: 500 yoke of oxen and 500 donkeys carried off by Sabeans; 7,000 sheep burned up by the fire of God which fell from the sky’; 3,000 camels stolen by the Chaldeans; and the house of the firstborn destroyed by a mighty wind, killing Job’s ten children. Satan, then, smites him with dreadful boils, and Job, seated in ashes, scrapes his skin with broken pottery…”
Now, that’s more like it but, he is still not the evil thing we know.
Satan is just part of the staff, one of god’s handymen who does god’s biddings.
By the way, letting a man suffer like that just to prove a point… hmmm?
The word “satan” is mentioned ten times in the King James version of the bible.
If you really want to read about the origin of this guy, you’re better of with “Life of Adam and Eve”, a group of writings from the first century.
This is the text where the snake helps the devil, the woman is decieved and so on.
A book not part of the bible and from a much earlier hebrew text.
In “Second Book of Enoch”, who was also written long before even the christian religion started to spread, in manuscripts which were found in Russia and Servia and so far as is yet known has been preserved only in Slavonic and Coptic fragments…!?
Don’t ask! 🙂
In this text, a group of archangels are thrown out of heaven.
Here, the reference is Satariel, thought also to be Sataniel and Satan’el and the origin seems to be Babylonian.
Later on… very much later on, this text is interwoven with the “Book of Isaiah”…
Well, this goes on and on and on and all of it is myth.
Not one shred of evidence and most of it written either long before or in texts that did not even make the bible.
In Islam, the story is pretty much the same.
According to the Qur’an, Iblis (the Arabic name used) disobeyed an order from Allah to bow to Adam and as a result was forced out of heaven and given respite until the day of judgment from further punishment.
And it goes on…
Conclusion: Most of what you think you know about the devil is from popular press, movies or just plain wrong. 🙂