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WHEN CHRISTIANS ROAMED THE EARTH PB
Thus, though consigned to Hell, it would seem that some or all of the demons have the ability to roam the earth as well. This does not say that they do not wield considerable power, just that it is not unbounded.
If you think it is bad now, just imagine what it will be like when their power is unchained! Near the end of the world, Scripture says that Satan will be wholly loosed and will come forth to deceive the nations for a while; after this brief period, he and the other fallen angels will be definitively cast into the lake of fire and their influence forever ended. And when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be released from his prison and will come out to deceive the nations that are at the four corners of the earth, … their number is like the sand of the sea.
And they marched up over the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them, and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever Rev So for now, demons do have influence, but it is limited.
At the end, their full fury will be unleashed, but this is only to bring about their final, complete defeat, after which they will be forever sequestered in the lake of fire. Why God permits some demons the freedom to wander about the earth is mysterious.
Part of the Original Creation?
Angels and humans have free, rational souls; if our freedom is to mean anything, God must allow that some abuse it, even becoming sources of evil and temptation to others. For us, this life amounts to a kind of test: God permits some degree of evil to flourish yet at the same time offers us the grace to overcome it. Further, there is the tradition implied in Scripture that for every angel that fell there were two who did not Rev Thus, we live not merely under the influence of demons, but also under the influence and care of angels.
Demons, like human beings, suffer both victories and defeats; there are outcomes that delight them and those that disappoint and anger them. Anyone who has ever attended an exorcism can attest that demons do suffer great deal, especially when the faithful pray and make pious use of sacraments and sacramentals e. Faith and love are deeply disturbing to demons. We all do well in the current dispensation to remember St. Keep your distance!
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If evil is a necessary condition for freedom of rational souls to choose, then there must be some sort of reward for the good use of freedom and some sort of consequence for the bad use of freedom. Which necessarily leads to the next quote:. If God is love which Scripture states that He is then it is not an act of love to allow people to be deceived if it means they will fall into a state of torment without end.
Love does not have that character.
Scripture speaks of the souls in the next life having varying degrees of glory. I have a feeling that someone like St. Athanasius or Polycarp will shine like the sun, while someone who has done evil in his life will be like a flashlight bulb with a weak battery.
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This would seem to be a reasonable use of temptation of our souls. I wonder if your question is not rooted in an incomplete notion of love? We tend today to equate love with kindness, comfort, protection etc. But when you think about it, good parents who love their children subject them to tests and allow them to be exposed to the big bad world to some degree. But as our parents allowed us to fall off our bikes so we can learn to master and riding a bike, perhaps too God permits some limited exposure, along with the outstretched hand of his grace.
But whatever term they go by, there are 30, flavors, and it is hard to say what they say or why. You ideas are tempting, but not inline with Scripture or Tradition. In Matthew , Jesus was pretty clear that the goats will not be welcome in Heaven. Gen , NJB. No sin, no sickness, no death. What do you think?
Is there a way back to Paradise for us? Exorcists are forbidden from publishing exorcisms without the permission of the Church and the possessed, anyways. Indeed, Jesus says He saw Satan fall like lightning — a Jewish way of describing a loss of power or office. We only let him influence us insofar as we listen to the Tempter by giving into temptation, whereby we become accomplices with the Instigator of evil by doing evil sin.
I think I generally agree with the points you have made and discuss them in the article, though from a different perspective. I am aware that he does not have a body and that Scripture speaks often allegorically, and metaphorically etc. And most of my readers do not lack the sophistication your schooling of us implies. But thank you for your correction in case we do lack your understanding. Something tells me you need to get your own blog and then you can publish articles that seek to teach and edify. In terms of soteriology, the war is won, and sufficient grace is available for us to withstand.
But Satan still exerts considerable though limited influence and at the end will be loosed for a while.