Can Satan be in the presence of God?

Posted on December 25, 2011 at 12:01 am

God

Follow Gramps:

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail
Print Friendly

When reading Job, Satan presented himself before the Lord. We know that no unclean thing can be in the presence of God and that Satan is cut off from the presence of God, how then could he present himself to God? Any insites?

Robert

______________

Robert,

We often think of Satan as the great tempter – which he is, but Job shows us another side of Satan – that of accuser. The book of Job is a drama (some scholars even dismiss Job as a fictional character) where he suffers physically from the power of Satan and emotionally from callous friends. The argument he has with his friends over his righteousness is paralleled by a similar argument taking place in a heavenly court. His friends argue that surely he has done something ungodly, while the Accuser states that there is certainly unrighteousness in Job that will come out given the right circumstances. On earth, Job defends himself against his friends. In the heavenly tribunal, the Lord Himself takes Job’s side.

job accepting charity mormonYou asked for some insights and things to consider. So first, remember that Job is a drama. That means that Satan standing in the presence of God may only be introduced as a figure to move the story along – to show that the Lord, in completing Job’s perfection had to provide him with opposition.

Second, consider that Satan is acting in a very specific role of accuser. Paul counsels us against rebuking an Elder (1 Tim 5:1) and we see that even when Satan is rebuked directly, that task is left exclusively to the Lord by invoking the phrase “the Lord rebuke thee” (Zech 3:1-2, Jude 1:9). We see this play out in modern scripture, with Satan in the presence of the Lord accusing those he just tempted.

Joseph Smith similarly taught:

If you do not accuse each other, God will not accuse you. If you have no accuser you will enter heaven…. If you will not accuse me, I will not accuse you. If you will throw a cloak of charity over my sins, I will over yours—for charity covereth a multitude of sins.

History of the Church, 4:445.

Satan may fulfil this role of accuser literally, in person, or it may be that this is a position filled by unforgiving mortals assuming a devilish nature.

The third thing to consider is that everyone must give an accounting of their own stewardship. Job opens with Satan giving an accounting of his wandering in the earth tempting man. When you give an accounting of your life, there will be witnesses there to testify to what you were taught and what you knew. Undoubtedly, Satan will also give an accounting of the tempations he sowed in your life.

Ever since he was cast out of Heaven the only time we find Satan in the presence of God is when he is summoned to give an accounting, and when he stands as Accuser.

Summary
Article Name
Can Satan be in the presence of God? - Ask Gramps - Q and A about Mormon Doctrine
Author
Description
When reading Job, Satan presented himself before the Lord. We know that no unclean thing can be in the presence of God and that Satan is cut off from the presence of God, how then could he present himself to God?

Follow Gramps:

Did the Savior personally baptize anyone?

September 18, 2014 8:22 am

Question Gramps, Did the Savior personally baptize anyone, either in Jerusalem or in the Americas?? Lee   Answer Dear Lee, The scriptures state that Jesus encouraged baptism among (more)

Sending in questions to Ask Gramps

September 17, 2014 8:11 pm

At this time we are experiencing some technical difficulties when trying to submit a question to Ask Gramps.  Currently it doesn’t appear as if the question is going through (more)

Who are the 144,000 spoken of in Revelation?

September 17, 2014 8:26 am

Question Gramps, Who are the 144,000 spoken of in Revelation ? Thank you. Donna     Answer Dear Donna, Joseph Smith was asked the same question (along with (more)

Are there scriptural references that Christ was nailed to the cross?

September 16, 2014 8:10 am

 Question Gramps, I have been a member all my life and I had someone ask me a question and I was stumped. I have asked Institute teachers and (more)

Why not polyandry in the Celestial Kingdom?

September 15, 2014 7:49 am

Question Gramps, The subject basically says it all. It doesn’t make sense to me that Heavenly Father would treat his daughters and sons differently from one another. Why (more)

Where can I find Ezra Taft Benson’s talk about the last days?

September 9, 2014 10:50 am

Question Gramps, I keep hearing about a talk that Ezra Taft Benson gave in a devotional regarding events leading to the last days.  Have you heard of it (more)

Why wasn’t Priesthood authority restored first?

September 7, 2014 7:31 am

Question Gramps, If the Priesthood is the power of God given to men on earth, why was it not restored first? Wouldn’t this power and authority be  required (more)

What lesson did God want to teach Jonah in the story of the gourd and the worm?

September 5, 2014 7:49 am

Question Kia Ora Gramps.Could you please help to understand what lesson the Lord wanted to teach Jonah about the Gourd and the Worm? I’m having trouble understanding the (more)

Did Jesus receive temple ordinances?

September 3, 2014 8:28 am

Question Gramps, Did Jesus receive temple ordinances? I know he was baptized to fulfill all righteousness but he was sinless and didn’t need to be. So then did (more)

Can two people live together in a platonic relationship?

September 2, 2014 7:52 am

Question Gramps, I realize that we are to remain completely chaste before marriage, but what about cohabiting  with single persons of the opposite sex in a completely platonic (more)

How did Christ get anything done while on the earth?

September 1, 2014 6:00 am

Question Dear Gramps, I was just wondering how Christ, when He was on the earth, was able to get anything done, with so many things distracting Him.  For (more)

Why did God need Jesus to atone for our sins?

August 31, 2014 6:00 am

Question Gramps, With all of God’s knowledge and power, why did he need Jesus to atone and sacrifice for our sins? Sherlene   Answer Hello Sherlene, In teaching (more)