Lent status: Available
When God created Adam and Eve, the devil was already a fallen angel and the adversary of God. He was also to become the slayer of man and the father of lies. If the fallen angels who had followed him in his rebellion against God, had left a seed behind on earth when they went in unto the daughters of men and these bore children from them, why not also Satan?
There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.
The figurative use of the word serpent in the garden of Eden was only to bring forward a very important fact and truth.
When Revelation 20:2; - - - -
And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years
See also Rev. 12:3-4, 9;
3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.
4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the women which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
- - - - refers to the dragon as: “that old serpent which is the Devil and Satan” (Satan means adversary), then it is clear that it was no one else but the devil himself which tempted the first man Adam, and not a snake. As the figurative use of the name “dragon” had to serve to depict the ferocity and frightfulness of the enemy of our soul, so the “serpent” had to depict his deceitfulness, charm and fascination.
The Hebrew for “serpent” in:- - - -
NOW the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
- - - - is ‘nachash’ which means to hiss, mutter or whisper, as do enchanters. It also means in a secondary sense to divine, or enchant or
mesmerise, as a snake often does before catching its prey. It also has the meaning to shine or sparkle, like bronze or copper. Some Scriptures also tell us that Satan has an extremely attractive appearance - (see e.g. 2 Cor. 11:3, 14), and this Hebrew word therefore also conveys the meaning to fascinate and bewitch.
Cp. Deuteronomy 18:10-14;
10 There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
11 Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.
12 For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.
13 Thou shalt be perfect with the LORD thy God.
14 For these nations, which thou shalt possess, hearkened unto observers of times, and unto diviners: but as for thee, the LORD thy God hath not suffered thee so to do.
In like manner the term saraph (plural seraphim), meaning to burn, or to be elevated, is translated in:
Numbers 21:8, 9, 6; - as a “fiery serpent” - - - -
8 And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come too pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.
- - - - in the next verse the verse ‘nachash’ is again used for serpent, - - - -
9 And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.
- - - - while in verse 6 - - - -
6 And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.
- - - - both words are given for “fiery serpents”.
The same word saraph (Seraphim) is used of the heavenly ones of:
Isaiah 6:2, 6;
2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.
6 Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar:
Thus saraph is used of a fiery serpent and of an exalted celestial being; nachash being similarly used to designate a serpent and a glorious spirit being. The nachash, or serpent, who beguiled Eve: - - - -
2 Corinthians 11:3, 14;
3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
- - - - is spoken of as “an angel of light” in:
And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.