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1-22 The Devil And Sin

Q. Would you agree that in 1 John 3 the word devil is used for sin?

A. Okay, 1 John 3, which verse?

Q. Verse 8.

A. Is the word devil being used to mean sin? I would say no. He who does what is sinful is of the devil. That doesn't mean that he is the devil.

Q. Is it used as the cause of sin?

A. No it is isn't. It is not used as the cause of sin either. Sin comes from within ourselves.

Q. What is the relationship here between the devil and sin?

A.The devil sins and those who sin are of their father the devil in the sense that they are patterning their behaviours after the behaviours of the devil. Remember what I said earlier, temptation and sin are not the same thing.

Q. (change of tape, few words missing) ...depending where you are coming from and how the church values your faith, you're coming more from that perspective, it's airtight, there are no problems with it, and there are no weaknesses, and the respective positions are considered to be impregnable, where's responsible?

A. I don't know, I would have to think about it. Good comment. Are there comments or questions? Sorry, I'm not always very good at thinking fast on my feet. Yes?

Q. In Hebrews 2: 14 when the apostle speaks about the devil being destroyed. What does he mean in your understanding of this topic in the context of this debate?

A. I would relate that to John 12: 31. The devil was judged at the crucifixion of Christ, although ultimately his literal destruction will not be until the future in which he is cast into the lake of fire. That's my understanding.

Q. Could you elaborate on that for a moment? Why did the death of Christ affect the devil? What was the reason?

A. The death of Christ affects our salvation and in that the forces of evil are overcome.

Q. What did his human nature have to do with this process?

A. What was your question?

Q. It is stressed in Hebrews 2: 14 that he was of our nature, and likewise took part of the same. What's that got to do...

A. Simply this. Jesus couldn't have died for our sins unless he was a man. He had to be a man, a last Adam, to reverse the errors committed by the first Adam. That is why Jesus had to be a man and that is why the atonement is effective. Was there another question back here, oh okay.

Q. We have sin and the cross of Christ. Where is the devil involved here? Since he does not cause us to sin, where is the devil involved?

A.The devil tempts us.

Q. I see. Where does it say that?

A. Well, for example, in the wilderness temptations, in Genesis chapter 3, there are various other references to the devil's activity in relation to man.

Q. Genesis 3 says that?

A. Genesis 3 says the serpent which is interpreted by Paul and John as the devil.

Q. Where do we read that?

A. Well, in 1 Corinthians 11 in that passage Paul identifies the serpent who deceived Eve, in I think it is verse 3 or 4, with the...well, let's see, let's turn to the passage to get the specific verses. 1 Corinthians chapter 11, I'm sorry, 2 Corinthians. Very good. He talks in verse 3 of the deception of Eve by the serpent and verse 5, let's see, approximately 5 through 10 are a parenthetical section somewhere around that area, in v. 14 he sees Satan masquerading as an angel of light, also in the Epistle of Romans Paul alludes to Genesis 3: 15 talking about Christians trampling Satan underneath their feet and John's reference of course is in the Book of Revelation, particularly for example, I think it is chapter 12: 7 or 9, which identifies the serpent as the devil or satan.

Q.You just made a point there that Satan is going to be trampled underfoot, well, in Genesis 3: 15, it doesn't say that the snake is going to be trampled underfoot, it says that the seed of the snake is going to be trodden underfoot. Now, how do you see the difference between the seed of the serpent and the serpent, you can't say that both of them... ?

A. Okay, Genesis 3: 15, the enmity between the offspring of the woman and the serpent. To tell the truth I haven't thought about it, I would have to think about it.

Q. Micah 4 (not sure of the verse) talks about the wicked, the wicked will be trodden underfoot, and that is the work of the Lord as you mentioned, seems to tie sinners to " you are of your father the devil" ...

(Comment from floor) What you are saying is the wicked are the seed of the serpent. I would agree with you. (Few words inaudible).

Mr. Mattison: Other questions. Yes?

Q. Let's get this out - the devil tempting us - that's the connection between the devil and sin - is based on Genesis 3 and Matthew 4, the temptation of Christ, okay, those are your verses, right?

A. Those were verses that I referred to, let's see, I've written a thesal commentary in which I dealt with all the verses in the Bible which talk about the devil and satan, and which also summarises the devil's activity by referring to all these verses. This will be made available after the debate and you can pick up a copy and have a look at it, and you probably find more verses. Those were verses which I came up off the top of my head, yes.

Q. The point on the temptation of Christ rests on the fact that personification is not used in the Bible in a historical narrative.

A. Not only on that. That was one of my main points which so far has gone unanswered, but it is really based upon a plain, literal normal interpretation of scripture.

Q. You agree that the entire narrative in Matt. 4 is not literal because there is a lot he couldn't see - all the kingdoms of the world.

A. I believe the entire narrative is literal. I have question over here?

Q. Romans 6 - there are three verses there which if the devil were the cause of our problems would be highlighted, I think. It says there, Rom. 6 v. 16, " Know ye not that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey, whether sin unto death, or obedience unto righteousness. But God be thanked that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered unto you. Being then, made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness." There's no indication there that we are serving sin, or the devil there, the problem comes from within ourselves.

A. Certainly that's true. Your argument is an argument from silence. Other points or questions? Okay, that's it. Thank you very much.