Unconditionally Hating Demons

pray for satan

Those of us who’ve grown up in a christian culture have probably all been taught to love everyone and even forgive and pray for our enemies.

Yet somehow demons have managed to be excluded from the definitions of the words “everyone” and “enemies.”

We were not taught to love demons.

We were not taught to forgive demons.

We were not taught to pray for demons.

Why?

Aren’t demons “someone”?

Aren’t they our enemy?

How come they are exempt from what Jesus instructed his disciples to do?

“Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven” (Matthew 18:21-22).

“But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you” (Luke 6:27-28).

And why were we taught things that the scriptures in fact never do say, such as:

God doesn’t love demons.

Demons can’t repent. 

Demons can’t be forgiven. 

overboard

If God created demons, he must have initially loved them. But if God’s love for them could change after they turned bad, why should we be any different?

Why do we think that demons, unlike us, cannot change their ways? Why do we think that it’s “too late” for them? The scriptures never say this. According to Jesus anyone who believes in him can gain eternal life, and his reasoning is that he didn’t come to condemn but to save (John 3:16-17).

Why do people cringe and even become outraged at the suggestion of forgiving demons?

People often say “God is love!” and proceed to describe him with 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. That very segment says that love keeps NO record of wrongs. Most people have no problem applying that line to humans. But…. what if there are no boundaries to love? After all, Paul did note in Romans 8:19 that creation (not just humans) eagerly awaits the manifestation of the children of God. Or maybe when in Mark’s account of the life is Jesus (Mark 16:15), he mentions that Jesus asked those with him to preach the gospel to ALL creation (again, not all humans). Do we really think that we can stretch the goodness of God so far that he interrupts us and says “Okay, okay I know I’m good/gracious/merciful/loving and all but come on guys, I’m not THAT good… sheesh!”? – Daniel Kotin

I’m done being angry. It’s no fun. When anger is directed toward demons, people call it “spiritual warfare” and act as if it is a fruit of the Spirit, but it’s not.

I’ve been more at peace in my heart since I’ve extended pardon to the “spirits in prison,” just like Jesus did (1 Peter 3:18-20).

devilAccording to Jesus, we are the ones who determine whether demons are forgiven or not.

“If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld” (John 20:23).

So I choose to forgive all demons.

I forgive them, for they know not what they do (Luke 23:34).

I choose to believe that God will indeed be “all in all” (1 Corinthians 15:28) and that God’s redemption really is powerful enough to “restore all things,” even demons (Acts 3:21).

When evil shall have been some day annihilated in the long revolutions of the ages, nothing shall be left outside the world of goodness, but that even from those evil spirits shall rise in harmony the confession of Christ’s Lordship. – Gregory of Nyssa

I know that most persons understand by the story of Nineveh and its king, the ultimate forgiveness of the devil and all rational creatures. – St. Jerome

In the end God’s patient love will succeed in making all his creatures weary of their unfaithfulness. The most stubborn will eventually give in and consent to love him, and at last even his enemy death will be overcome. – Origen

The devils themselves after a set time expired should be loosed from their torments, and become bright angels in heaven, as they were before. – Origen

*****

Also see:

The Salvation of Satan by C. A. Patrides
http://www.jstor.org/stable/2708524

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