Our Readers Ask . . .

Did God Create the Devil?

▪ Since the Bible says that God “created all things,” some have concluded that God must have created the Devil. (Ephesians 3:9; Revelation 4:11) The Bible clearly shows that he did not.

Jehovah created the person who became the Devil. Thus, the existence of this one as the chief opposer of God must be reconciled with what the Scriptures reveal about Jehovah as the Creator. Of him, it is said: “Perfect is his activity, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness, with whom there is no injustice; righteous and upright is he.” (Deuteronomy 32:3-5) From that statement, we can conclude that Satan had at one time been perfect and righteous, namely, one of God’s angelic sons. At John 8:44, Jesus said that the Devil “did not stand fast in the truth,” implying that Satan had at one time been truthful and guiltless.

However, like the rest of Jehovah’s intelligent creatures, the angel who became Satan had the freedom to choose between right and wrong. By choosing a course in opposition to God and inciting the first human couple to join him, he made himself Satan, which means “Resister.”—Genesis 3:1-5.

That wicked spirit creature also made himself the Devil, meaning “Slanderer.” Satan was the invisible pretender who was behind the serpent and cunningly used lies to trick Eve into disobeying the Creator’s plainly stated law. That is why Jesus called Satan “the father of the lie.”—John 8:44.

How, though, could a perfect spirit creature—who had neither weaknesses from within nor wicked influences from without—become wrongly inclined? He evidently craved worship that belonged only to God and saw the possibility of bringing humans under his rule instead of that of Jehovah. By continuing to dwell on this prospect of rulership instead of dismissing it, he allowed the idea to fester until, at last, he acted upon it. The process is described in the book of James: “Each one is tried by being drawn out and enticed by his own desire. Then the desire, when it has become fertile, gives birth to sin.”—James 1:14, 15; 1 Timothy 3:6.

To illustrate: Imagine an accountant who sees an opportunity to manipulate records in such a way as to steal from his company for personal profit. He might quickly dismiss that wrong thought. If, instead, he dwells on this possibility, then the idea will grow in its appeal, and he is likely to carry it out. If he does, he has, in effect, made himself a thief. If he lies about his crime, he becomes a liar too. In a similar way, by cultivating wrong desires and acting on them, the angel whom God created used his free will to engage in deception and rebel against his Father, thus making himself Satan the Devil.

Thankfully, Satan the Devil will be destroyed in God’s due time. (Romans 16:20) Meanwhile, worshippers of Jehovah God are informed of Satan’s designs and given protection from his machinations. (2 Corinthians 2:11; Ephesians 6:11) So by all means “oppose the Devil, and he will flee from you.”—James 4:7.

[Blurb on page 21]

By choosing a course in opposition to God, a perfect angelic creature made himself Satan