June 29, 2018

Dear Brethren,

Recently, I received an excellent Biblical question from a Church member. After answering this person’s question, I felt it would be good to share the member’s question and my response with everyone tonight in the Brethren Letter. There are a some edits I have made for better clarity.

Please have a wonderful Sabbath!

Your Brother in Christ,

Gary Liebold

 

Question: In the Romans 8 sermon Mr. Armstrong states…that Satan cannot exist except that God allows it. Given the truth of that, why would God allow Satan to continue to exist in any fashion after the completion of the plan of salvation?

Hello ___________,

… True, Satan cannot exist without God allowing it. God could have destroyed him before Adam was ever created. However, He didn’t. Man must learn that he cannot live apart from God. This is Satan’s world (II Corinthians 4:4). Mankind is learning lessons the hard way, but effectively (in the long-run).

We see in the book of Luke, Mark, and Acts, that demons are subject to MENTAL torment…

Luke 11:24 (GWT)

“When an evil spirit comes out of a person, it goes through dry places looking for a place to rest. But it doesn’t find any. Then it says, ‘I’ll go back to the home I left.’

Mark 5:1-13 (GWT) 1 They arrived in the territory of the Gerasenes on the other side of the Sea of Galilee. 2 As Jesus stepped out of the boat, a man came out of the tombs and met him. The man was controlled by an evil spirit 3 and lived among the tombs. No one could restrain him any longer, not even with a chain. 4 He had often been chained hand and foot. However, he

snapped the chains off his hands and broke the chains from his feet. No one could control him. 5 Night and day he was among the tombs and on the mountainsides screaming and cutting himself with stones. 6 The man saw Jesus at a distance. So he ran {to Jesus}, bowed down in front of him, 7 and shouted, “Why are you bothering me now, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Swear to God that you won’t torture me.” 8 He shouted this because Jesus said, “You evil spirit, come out of the man.” 9 Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” He told Jesus, “My name is Legion [Six Thousand], because there are many of us.” 10 He begged Jesus not to send them out of the territory. 11 A large herd of pigs was feeding on a mountainside nearby. 12 The demons begged him, “Send us into the pigs! Let us enter them!”

13 Jesus let them do this. The evil spirits came out of the man and went into the pigs. The herd of about two thousand pigs rushed down the cliff into the sea and drowned.

Acts 8:7 (GWT) 7 Evil spirits screamed as they came out of the many people they had possessed. Many paralyzed and lame people were cured.

Now, I’ll go to Revelation 20:10 (NKJV)…

10 The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are [had been cast, or were]. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

The Beast and False prophet were not living at the time spoken of in Revelation 20:10. They had already been cast into the lake of fire and burned. This scripture should read “had been cast, or were,” rather than “are.” Satan is also thrown into that fire, but he does not burn. Spirit cannot burn-up in a fire. The fire is physical and will eventually burn itself out, but Satan and the demon’s full TORMENT will last FOREVER. Being isolated, they will go through ETERNAL anguish and mental torment. That’s a greater punishment than simply ceasing to exist.

Sincerely,

Gary Liebold

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