another take

This was originally a reply to another thread, but as I finished it up I figured it could possibly stand on its own…

I would have to say he could’ve sinned if he chose, he had to face what we face, temptation to give in to our personal desires. The twist is that his temptations were a lot heavier uab ours, so if gd was tempted (and its written he was) think of the weight of gds selfishness? What I stumble across in contemplating his temptation is the manor in which his temptations were addressed. I was taught and understand the tactic in which what is evil would rather you simply not believe it exists in the first place, also considering that it can and does represent itself as an angel of light. So consider this, while our brother was in the desert ( wilderness) do I picture the embodiment of evil revealing itself as it is? And let’s not lose the realization that Gd recognises all as it is, thus how tempting is it truly if the outcome is obvious. So a proposal in this theory is that Jesus heard his own voice, his reasons for hunger conversing in his mind as we would deciding what we should wear, and the thought of self doubt as he stood on the edge, hungry still and burdened by what he knew was coming, and knowing that this is earth is ruled by evil ( systematically, and what have you) yet knowing it could be his if he bowed to evil, now here I inject that when we give into evils will we are more or less putting ourselves first, so could it be that Jesus never saw the one we call evil but instead he waged a war inside Christs head, as though the dialogue was with himself…comments, please…

And apologies for any errors, I’m using a thunderbolt w a cracked screen…pls bare w me…

Wait, you never said what the original question this is in answer to is…

Is it “Could Jesus have sinned?”?

Yeppers…lol…ii should’ve put a lil more effort into it, ya think?..

*"We confess ,then, that He assumed all the natural and innocent passions of man. For He assumed the whole man and all man’s attributes save sin. For that is not natural, nor is it implanted in us by the Creator, but arises voluntarily in our mode of life as the result of a further implantation by the devil, though it cannot prevail over us by force. For the natural and innocent passions are those which are not in our power, but which have entered into the life of man owing to the condemnation by reason of the transgression; such as hunger, thirst, weariness, labour, the tears, the corruption, the shrinking from death, the fear, the agony with the bloody sweat, the succour at the hands of angels because of the weakness of the nature, and other such like passions which belong by nature to every man.

All, then, He assumed that He might sanctify all. He was tried and overcame in order that He might prepare victory for us and give to nature power to overcome its antagonist, in order that nature which was overcome of old might overcome its former conqueror by the very weapons wherewith it had itself been overcome.

The wicked one , then, made his assault from without, not by thoughts prompted inwardly, just as it was with Adam. For it was not by inward thoughts, but by the serpent that Adam was assailed. But the Lord repulsed the assault and dispelled it like vapour, in order that the passions which assailed him and were overcome might be easily subdued by us, and that the new Adam should save the old.

Of a truth our natural passions were in harmony with nature and above nature in Christ. For they were stirred in Him after a natural manner when He permitted the flesh to suffer what was proper to it: but they were above nature because that which was natural did not in the Lord assume command over the will. For no compulsion is contemplated in Him but all is voluntary. For it was with His will that He hungered and thirsted and feared and died."*

This is from An Exposition of the Orthodox Faith (Book III), Chapter 20, by John of Damascus. To summarize: Christ had two natures and so he was fully man and fully God, and He did not assume the attribute of sin. Man was not given the ability to sin when he was created, he was made perfect. That is why the assault on the nature of man was an outward assault in the form a serpent, not because of an implanted thought. Likewise, Jesus was assaulted by Satan because he did not have in his nature the ability to sin, and the assault was not a test of His will, but it was an attempt to disrupt Gods plan for our salvation. For by his fortitude, Jesus shows us that he has overcome sin, and that we can just as easily overcome it, and by his dying he has overcome death, and promises that we too shall overcome it.

Furthermore, I can’t agree with those that say he could sin, because then we fall into the trap of saying that Jesus and God are not one. For how can he be of two seperate natures in will, and be one, if the one nature is capable of sin and the other is not? The two are not separated not even in will. Jesus professed that he came to do His Father’s will (John 6:38), not meaning that he had a separate will of his own, but he and the Father are one (John 10:30). If he is always doing his father’s will, is it the will of the father that he might sin? I do not believe so.

Awesome reply. So now may I ask about the nature of man, growing up I was told that its our nature that causes us to be weakened against sin, but our nature was created perfectly…I can’t word it properly but I’m asking if you could elaborate on the part where john of damascus speaks about it not being a thought but an act of the serpent…I know I didn’t word it right, and I only have an android to access the world wide wonders here, thus making it difficult to go back and forth checking for errors…

But I do wanna thank you for introducing another book that will be added to my library…

Hoo boy! :shrug:
Just one more time…

The tempter approached and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command that these stones become loaves of bread.”

The devil didn’t know Jesus was God or there would have been no temptation.

  • Then the devil took him to the holy city, and made him stand on the parapet of the temple,
    and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down. For it is written:
    ‘He will command his angels concerning you’
    and ‘with their hands they will support you,
    lest you dash your foot against a stone.’”

Again, the devil didn’t know Jesus was God.

Then the devil took him up to a very high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in their magnificence,
and he said to him, “All these I shall give to you, if you will prostrate yourself and worship me.”*

The devil still doesn’t know Jesus was God. He offers Jesus a deal that would only interest a mere man, the following of all the peoples on earth, a kind of kingship or world influence. A divine Jesus would not be interested in that.

God cannot sin.

It is in our nature now to sin, because we are weakened by the first sin (original sin) of Adam and Eve. Having experienced much temptation, even if Satan were bound for a 1000 years, there would still be sin in the world because man can sin without temptation. For this reason we die, because the wage of sin is death-- it is a debt we owe to Divine justice (not to Satan-- we do not belong to him). Jesus was made in the likeness of the first man. Therefore, sin was not in his nature, and suffering and death had no hold over him. However, he lowered himself and took the form of a man and chose to suffer and die to pay for the debt of sin for us so that we can be saved. His payment, because he was God, satisfied the debt owed to Divine justice so that now death has no hold over us (we can be worthy of entering heaven)-- the devil’s weapons have been rendered useless.

I have read that Augustine was of the opinion that the Devil did not know that Jesus was God at the time of the temptation (by divine intervention Jesus willed that he didn’t know it), though he suspected it and that is why he says “If you are the Son of God then…”

I find a logical problem with that though, because Lucifer was there in the beginning, and Jesus was before Him and he would most certainly have known him in the beginning. The church fathers all seem to be like minded in their opinion that Lucifer did not lose any knowledge that was granted him after his fall. Therefore, he must have known who Jesus was. The demons even profess they know him to be the Christ in the gospels.

So why then does Satan say: “If you are the Son of God then…”?

Well, first off we have to understand that Jesus desired to be tempted so that he might overcome temptation just as he died to overcome death. So Jesus ALLOWED himself to be tempted. We also need to know that the Devil desired for him to be tempted, because the devil had no power over him.

So when Jesus allowed himself to get hungry, this put him in a weakened state, and opened the door for the devil to come and tempt him, but the only way the devil could tempt him is by an outward assault (because it was not in the nature of Christ to sin). The devil desires to share an equality with God, and so the first temptation is an attempt to get God to submit to his human desire to eat and stop the suffering he was undergoing (to acknowledge that the suffering of man is too great and is an injustice) . The second attempt was a futile attempt to use God’s own words against him. The last attempt was an attempt at a sort of truce, that if God would only submit to Lucifer’s desire, it would bring about peace. Jesus thwarted his every advance, and the devil withdrew to await a better moment when he could get God to see things his way.

The devil is an accuser, and being at war with God and all of creation, said “If you are the Son of God then…” as a way of accusing Him. Being a liar himself and the father of lies, he accuses all, finding fault in all, because he is not permitted to have what he desires. If he stood in the heavens in the presence of God and boldly accused God (see Job), then he certainly would stand and accuse Jesus.

It is my opinion, that after failing to get God to see things his way by assaulting him with suffering and every kind of temptation, Satan did not give up. He sought to make him suffer and put him to death, hoping that in an even more weakened state, God would certainly see it his way. For he knew full well that God had come down from the heavens and became man, and would allow himself to suffer and even die for us. This is why they said to him “If you are the Son of God then come down from the cross.”, because certainly he could have. For the people that said this, they desired the proof because Satan put this in their minds (despite all the miracles he got them to doubt it). As for Satan, he needed no such proof, but so that we might know that Jesus’ suffering and death were by the hand of Satan, they were tempted into saying it. He thought that if God saw how men are made to suffer and die, God would give in to him and give him what he desires. But God’s plan for us was to overcome it and to show us that suffering and death are a Divine justice, and that by dying for us he paid the debt for us so that now we can be saved. In his lust for what he desires, Satan does not care about Gods plans for us, he only cares about his desires and what he wants. Therefore, he was not concerned about murdering Jesus or what that would bring about for us. He causes all of creation to suffer because he is angry over not being able to get what he desires.

Of course, as I have stated, this is only my opinion. So I’m not looking to convince you of anything, I am just sharing my thoughts with you.

Jesus thwarted his every advance, and the devil withdrew to await a better moment when he could get God to see things his way.

If even we can see that the devil could never get God to see things his way,
much more would the devil see this.

The devil would not knowingly tempt God, because his failure was certain and his pride would be hurt. He wouldn’t go through the humiliation.

Later, the devils in possession of a man said, “We are legion”. They knew Jesus was God because by this time Jesus had manifested himself as such. So they asked him to let them go into the swine. ( the meaning is, how terrible must be hell if they preferred to be in pigs )

Of course he would knowingly tempt God. The book of Job shows that He is perfectly capable and desires to do so. In Job he is even so bold as to stand in heaven among the angels and accuse God, saying that because God has given Job many things, Job is a loyal and faithful servant. God commands us not to test him, but the devil does it regardless, because the devil is so filled with lust for what he wants that he tries whatever he can to get it. Being in a position that he is in, he would also know full well that what he wants is impossible to get, and that is what enrages him all the more.

I agree with all you just said, but there is one distinction to be made. Although the demons know that Jesus was the Christ, that doesn’t mean He was necessarily God.

God could have sent a man to be the Messiah, without coming down Himself as the second person of the Trinity. It was that which Satan missed, and didn’t realize until it was too late.

Though the subject of Jesus being God is another conversation, I will ask you to contemplate on your words. No man, angel, or any creature under the heavens or in the earth could save man. If that were so, then the law and the prophets would have been enough. It has always been considered a heresy to deny the divinity of Christ. It sounds like you are searching for answers on that or you have some doubts. Since going off on another topic in this thread would be a violation of forum rules, we can’t discuss it in this thread, but I’d be willing to engage in a conversation over it in a new thread. If you’d like to discuss the topic openly you can start a new thread and send me a link via the messaging system, and I’ll drop in soon as I can and leave you some replies.

God bless you always, and I hope to see you around.

[quote]Originally Posted by empther
The devil would not knowingly tempt God, because his failure was certain and his pride would be hurt. He wouldn’t go through the humiliation.

Of course he would knowingly tempt God. The book of Job shows that He is perfectly capable and desires to do so. In Job he is even so bold as to stand in heaven among the angels and accuse God, saying that because God has given Job many things, Job is a loyal and faithful servant. God commands us not to test him, but the devil does it regardless, because the devil is so filled with lust for what he wants that he tries whatever he can to get it. Being in a position that he is in, he would also know full well that what he wants is impossible to get, and that is what enrages him all the more.


The Book of Job is not to be taken literally. It’s not history.
The scriptural writer was using poetic license to make some points.

Job, who probably didn’t exist, is not even a Hebrew, but somebody in the Bedouin tribes.

God and the devil don’t talk to each other. The devil wanted independence from God. He got it.

Hey empther, could you direct me to references that give us sound and solid proof that we can rest assure that this embodiment of evil and our Father do not speak, converse etc…?..we can debate the historical events of job and seek out its authenticity, but it can be proven either way truth may lay better or more than what we know about heavens affairs…Jesus taught us more about how to live our lives here than he speculated what comes next…I’m really curious our of sincerity, not provocation so any sources other than its “just how you feel”…and yes church documents, scripture early church father recent doctor, even protestant writing would suffice…

Many look upon the entire contents of the book as a freely invented parable which is neither historical nor intended to be considered historical; no such man as Job ever lived. Catholic commentators, however, almost without exception, hold Job to have actually existed and his personality to have been preserved by popular tradition. Nothing in the text makes it necessary to doubt his historical existence. The Scriptures seem repeatedly to take this for granted (cf. Ezekiel 14:14; James 5:11; Tobit 2:12-15, according to the Vulgate — in the Greek text of Tobias there is no mention of Job). All the Fathers considered Job an historical person; some of their testimonies may be found in Knabenbauer, “Zu Job” (Paris, 1886), 12-13. The Martyrology of the Latin Church mentions Job on 10 May, that of the Greek Church on 6 May (cf. Acta SS.’ II, May, 494). The Book of Job, therefore, has a kernel of fact, with which have been united many imaginative additions that are not strictly historical. What is related by the poet in the prose prologue and epilogue is in the main historical: the persons of the hero and his friends; the region where be lived; his good fortune and virtues; the great misfortune that overwhelmed him and the patience with which lie bore it; the restoration of his Prosperity. It is also to be accepted that Job and his friends discussed the origin of his sufferings, and that in so doing views were expressed similar to those the poet puts into the mouths of his characters. The details of the execution, the poetic form, and the art shown in the arrangement of the arguments in the dispute are, however, the free creation of the author. The figures expressive of the wealth of Job both before and after his trial are imaginatively rounded. Also in the narrative of the misfortunes it is impossible not to recognize a poetic conception which need not be considered as strictly historical. The scene in heaven (i, 6; ii, 1) is plainly an allegory which shows that the Providence of God guides the destiny of man (cf. St. Thomas, “In Job”). The manifestation of God (xxxviii, 1) generally receives a literal interpretation from commentators. St. Thomas, however, remarks that it may also be taken metaphorically as an inner revelation accorded to Job.


While Job is poetic and some might argue that the story is full of metaphors, the nature of the devil is well depicted.

How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, who didst rise in the morning? how art thou fallen to the earth, that didst wound the nations? And thou saidst in thy heart: I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God, I will sit in the mountain of the covenant, in the sides of the north. I will ascend above the height of the clouds, I will be like the most High. But yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, into the depth of the pit. (Isaiah 14:12-15)

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