To continue chopping away at the false doctrine relating to Paradise, let us begin by pointing out, if we say someone is foxy, we don't mean they are a literal fox. In fact, Jesus Himself called Herod a fox in Luke 13:32.
32 And He(Jesus) said to them, "Go, tell that fox, 'Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.'
The Hebrews also called undesirable men dogs, but they did not mean they were really dogs either. II Samuel 16:9 is an example.
II Samuel 16:9
9 Then Abishai the son of Zeruiah said to the king, "Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Please, let me go over and take off his head!"
In Matthew 15:24 we see Jesus calling the house of Israel sheep as well, and in Revelation 12:9 we see Satan cast out of heaven and called both Dragon and Serpent.
24 But He answered and said, "I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel."
9 So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old(the one in the garden), called theDevil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
The point I'm trying to make is, just as we saw in last week's post that the tree of good and evil and the Tree of Life was not the same as the natural trees in the garden of Eden, we see from the above scripture the serpent likewise was not a literal serpent. The being was serpent-like. In looking at the Hebrew dictionary in the Strongs Concordance, the word "serpent", used in the scriptures pertaining to the garden, is number 5175 meaning serpent, and is from 5172 - whisper, magic, to prognosticate, to divine, enchanter, diligently observe. Do these definitions sound like a literal serpent? Where the serpent in the garden is referred to in the New Testament, such as in II Corinthians 11:3, the number in the Greek dictionary is 3789 to 3700 meaning, sharpness of vision, an artfully malicious person, and take note here, it actually says "Satan, to discern, to perceive."
II Corinthians 11:3is an example of this New Testament reference.
3 But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpentdeceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
We find this same serpent, with the same number not only in Revelation 12:9 as we have already read, but in Revelation 20:2 also.
2 He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old(that deceived Eve), who istheDevil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years;
SO, WHY WAS EVE FOOLED?
Let us read from II Corinthians 11:14.
II Corinthians 11:14
14 And no wonder! For Satan himselftransforms himself into an angel of light.
Could it be that what Eve saw was a beautiful angel? She wasn't afraid because, unlike fallen man, she and Adam talked with God, saw and talked with angels and was probably quite comfortable with them. They only knew good and were totally innocent of evil. They would therefore be very vulnerable to an artfully malicious being, an enchanter. Satan was beautiful to look at, seemingly wise, and certainly not a serpent like the reptiles that she and Adam had dominion over. So what kind of angel was he?
How did the church get so confused? Here is a possibility. The word "seraphim" (an angel) used in Isaiah 6:2 and Isaiah 6:6 is number 8314. 8314 to 8313 means burning, set on fire (figuratively) poisonous (serpent) especially a seraph (angel), copper color, fiery (serpent), or Seraph. It could be translated as either serpent or seraph, but considering scripture tells us he transformed himself into an angel of light and nowhere says he made himself a serpent, why do we teach this? So a seraphim, a copper colored fiery looking angel would be a better choice. We see seraphim in operation in Isaiah 6:2 and 6.
Isaiah 6:2 & 6
2 Above it stood seraphim; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. (not a reptile) 6 Thenone of the seraphimflew to me, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar. (again, not a reptile)
So church, we must not let our eyes be drawn away from the real culprit. James 3:7 is an example of the true serpent that is a literal reptile. That number in Greek is 2062 meaning to creep, a reptile, a serpent.
7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind.
I want to encourage those of you that love truth to get a Strongs Concordance, with the Greek and Hebrew dictionary, and study what the Lord is truly saying for yourself. Satan has successfully shrouded himself in lies, disguised himself in false doctrine, and maliciously destroyed and corrupted mankind since the garden. For instance, contrary to popular belief, a serpent was not cursed. It did not walk upright nor was it made to crawl on its belly and eat dust. A better translation of Genesis 3:14 would be: The fiery angel of light would go forth as flowing water to pulverize and make ashes of mankind. Study it out in the Strongs. If we continue to allow him to feed us the fruit of his lies we will, like Adam and Eve, forever keep our soulish eyes opened to see and understand this world of Satan only. If we seek truth however, we will not believe the lies of Satan and our spiritual eyes will begin to open to discern the Kingdom of God and who Satan really is.
II Thessalonians 2:8-10promises,
8 And then the lawless one will be revealed(uncovered), whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth(as truth is taught) and destroy with the brightness of His coming(through the enlightened body of Christ).
9 The coming of thelawless oneis according to the working of Satan(the body of Satan comes forth, constructed of people deceived by false doctrine), with allpower, signs, and lying wonders,
10 and with all unrighteous deception(just as in the garden) among thosewho perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
HIS HIDING PLACE
Once again Satan is cleverly concealed from most of the church. As Christ is in His body of people that love Truth, so Satan is in his body made up of people that refuse truth and have therefore refused Jesus. They are Anti-Christ unknowingly. These deceived ones self-righteously defend their false doctrines and are ferociously loyal to their denominations. They call themselves "the church". Satan calls them his hiding place.