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Religion

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  1. Satan started as “The Angel of Light.” He was beautiful, powerful, and gifted. Seeing how others looked to him, and finding their admiration justified, he determined to overthrow God, and make himself Master of Heaven. One-third of the angels joined his rebellion, and they quickly lost. God cast them out of heaven. Misery loves company, so Satan goes after God’s highest creation—humanity. Pride worked with the angels. For us he used deception. He encounters Adam & Eve, and asks whether it is true that God has forbidden them from eating all of the trees in the garden. Eve’s smart enough to know that Satan has it wrong, but does not realize his real aim—to convince her that God is unjust. She falls into his trap, and responds that no, God is not so mean, he only prohibits her from one tree. Then Satan delivers the First Lie—eat the fruit—you will not die! 6,000 years later we’re still hearing this lie. Ministers, wanting us to know God is not so bad, try to help him out, by downplaying, or outright denying the doctrine of hell. The most notorious recent example is the book Love Wins. The idea is that hell is not very loving, so maybe the traditional doctrine is flawed. Maybe hell is allegory. Maybe it is temporal. Never mind that Jesus said it is better for a man to enter heaven partially blind or maimed, than to go into hell with full-vision, and complete mobility. Then there is that account Jesus gives of Lazarus and the rich man—how the latter ends up in painful fire. We know he’s not making a parable or story, because he names the key player. What we can learn from Satan is quite direct and clear. Pride leads to rebellion against God. Further, the idea that God will not judge, and will not condemn souls to hell is the First Lie humanity experienced. Humility and love towards our Creator—these are what give us true and eternal purpose. For an audio podcast of the full version of this teaching see: http://www.anglelake.org/resources/online-sermons/?sermon_id=362