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The Hebrew word "Satan" means "Hinderer." To hinder someone means to hold him back, to try to prevent him from doing something. G-d created the Hinderer to give us work to do in this world (see my article Why did G-d Create the World?). Satan is here to make things difficult for us, so we can overcome our evil temptations, and PASS the test. That is the purpose of Satan. Satan is an angel whose purpose has been determined by G-d. Temptation is there to try and deter us. It gives us the ability to do the wrong thing. More importantly, it gives us the ability to look at evil and refuse to do it. By presenting us with the opportunity to do evil, it gives us the ability to choose between good and evil. The ability to choose between good and evil is what gives us free will. (See my article On the Nature of Free Will. So, in order for us to work for the good that Hashem wants to give us, the good of the World to Come, we need something to deter us. That is the ability to do evil. Satan is our Evil Inclination (Yetzer Hara). The Evil Inclination tries to prevent us from doing good, because Hashem has commanded the Evil Inclination to do that. Why? To give us free will. Each of us every day fights with Satan. We all have temptations, throughout the day. But we, as the Children of Israel, have the power to overcome even angels, if we work at it. Therefore, the Talmud says that men are greater than angels, for we can fight with an angel (Satan) and win. Satan is not, as the Christians think, a rebellious angel. How impossible! The angels are spiritual and holy, without any physical or unholy presence, and the presence of Hashem's holiness permeates them entirely. Angels, unlike humans, are therefore constantly and fully aware of Hashem's Presence everywhere. Could you stay dry in the ocean? An angel could not stop being holy, and can do no wrong. There is holiness everywhere in Creation, everywhere in the universe, and angels are made of the same thing. An angel could not stop serving G-d even if he tried. Furthermore, humans have Satan to tempt us. Angels have no Satan to tempt them. Who would be Satan's Satan? An ultra-Satan? The truth is that Satan has a job to do, just like every other angel. And angels have no free will. They do as Hashem commands them.
In Judaism, evil is the result of forsaking God. (Deuteronomy 28:20) Judaism stresses obedience to God's laws as written in the Torah (see also Tanakh) and the laws and rituals laid down in the Mishnah and the Talmud.
While some forms of Judaism, do not personify evil in Satan; these instead consider the human heart to be inherently bent toward deceit, although human beings are responsible for their choices, whereas in Judaism, there is no prejudice in one's becoming good or evil at time of birth. In Judaism, Satan is viewed as one who tests us for God rather than one who works against God, and evil, as in the Christian denominations above, is a matter of choice.“
"The One forming light and creating darkness,
Causing well-being and creating calamity;
I am the LORD who does all these. ”
King James version.
45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.
(Job 1:6, ESV)
Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them. 7The LORD said to Satan, "From where have you come?" Satan answered the LORD and said, "From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it."
Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him. And the LORD said to Satan, "The LORD rebuke you, O Satan! The LORD who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is not this a brand plucked from the fire?"
Originally posted by Rockpuck
reply to post by Romantic_Rebel
I always subscribed to the belief that "Satan" as the figure we see it today was introduced after the Mother Church began truly spreading across Europe.. it's a means of control, fear. If you're afraid of the consequences then you're more likely to follow the commands of the Church. It wasn't only a hundred years ago that they used to tell ye as a kid that if you lied in confession the floor would open up and swallow you into Hell.
Protestantism has an even bigger infatuation with the Satan figure.. the Fire and Brimstone types.. it's all fear, because even the ignorant can understand death, pain and suffering.
It's really not something humans would make up... it places man as a condemned sinner.