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Christian Tractatus

(Text as at 12/08/2007 10:17:46)

The evil counterparts of angels seem to have appeared on the scene much later, however, and developed into a dualism under the gnostics.

  1. Even the idea of Satan makes little impact on the Old Testament. When he does appear, as in Job, his character is not straightforwardly evil and antagonistic to God.
  2. The identification of the Serpent of Genesis with the Devil is not made plain until the New Testament book of Revelation.
  3. The only references to Demons in the Old Testament may be those, in Genesis 6, to the "sons of God" and their activities with the daughters of men.
  4. The similarities between such stories and the Greek legends of gods, Titans and heroes are to be noted, but there is no automatic deduction that there is some underlying reality. A shared mythology is more likely.
  5. Demons and Satan clearly play a much larger role in the New Testament, as do the notions of demon possession and exorcism.
  6. It is probable that these ideas are non-Hebraic, having been absorbed from the surrounding cultures with a greater love of symmetry (dualism).
  7. The identification of demon possession with mental illness makes the existence of demons very dubious.

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12/08/2007 10:17:46 426 (Spiritual Beings - Demons) Spiritual Beings

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