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(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.
- 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.
- The identification of the Serpent of Genesis with the Devil is not made plain until the New Testament book of Revelation.
- 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.
- 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.
- Demons and Satan clearly play a much larger role in the New Testament, as do the notions of demon possession and exorcism.
- It is probable that these ideas are non-Hebraic, having been absorbed from the surrounding cultures with a greater love of symmetry (dualism).
- The identification of demon possession with mental illness makes the existence of demons very dubious.
|Note last updated
||Reference for this Topic
||426 (Spiritual Beings - Demons)
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