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  • Randy McKenzie

Do You Believe in the Devil?

A recent survey in a leading national magazine has nonbelievers mocking

Christianity by saying that it’s distinguishing feature is not that Christians believe

in God but that they believe in the Devil.

I believe there is some truth in that paradox.

Someone who doesn’t go any deeper than the superficial, casual affirmation “I

believe that there is a God is operating on a considerable lower level from

someone who confesses with dismay. To believe in God is so customary that a

person suffers neither scorn nor ridicule because most people still do believe in

God. They can fashion a God in their imagination with little likeness to the living

God of the Word and thus in fact he really doesn’t exist at all. To believe that God

exists can be simply repeating what you have heard from others. It may not even

register or make a difference internally.

But it is a completely different matter if you believe in the existence of the Devil.

There is immediate conflict. Then you can expect to be mocked and scorned.

People will call you a narrow-minded religious fanatic. Yes, to admit you believe in

the Devil takes moral courage to maintain without wavering. While nine out of 10

feel there is a God, only 1 out of 10 believe there is a Devil according to this


Most true believers believe in a personal Devil. Because when you have battled,

doubted, or been in denial, and then finally prevailed, you come to recognize and

understand that the Devil really does exist. You will have engaged sin in all its

power. Sin ultimately energized so horrible and frightening to you that you cried


“Something like that should never take root in a person’s life. It comes from a

much deeper source. It comes from the pit of ruin. It comes from the Devil

himself!” -Abraham Kuyper

Believing there is a personal Devil is to believe in the depths of misery and in the

possibility of deliverance. Even more profoundly, it is to believe that your rescue

can come no other way then through a personal savior.

As long as we see sinning as only a bad habit, it is understandable that we will try

to replace it with a good habit. But when we recognize that it comes from a

powerful force trying to enslave us, will we then realize that we need a more

powerful source who is capable of destroying the work of the Devil and become

our deliverer. Jesus himself set the example for us. He always kept the Devil in

mind. His whole battle and all of his struggles were to tear down what the Devil

had built up. All the suffering he endured originated with Satan, the ruler of this

world. In all prayers we ask to be delivered from the Evil One.

He called the Devil not only a liar but also a murderer.

You are from your father, the Devil, and you want to do what he wants. He was

a murderer from the beginning. -John 8:44

To be a murderer means to attack humans with intense effort. His whole

purpose is to make us sin and to do what he wants. All sinning is to commit

murder of the will and conscience. Not only did he murder in Eden, but he was

always a murderer. Not only a murder in the case of Adam, but in the case of

every new born infant, in the case of every person who has ever lived, in the case

of each and every one of your loved ones you have prayed for every day. It means

doing things in an effort to render them defenseless, senseless, and so weakened

that they turn from God--their Source of Life.

This is what murder means.

This is the urgency with which we live. We must recognize the evil that exists.

We must turn to Jesus, to his Word, His Truth, and His Life.

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