God convicts, Satan condemns?

Does this hold true in Catholicism?

I thought that according to St. Faustina’s concept of hell that hell is a fire which is purely spiritual, lit by God’s anger.

Without knowing exactly what is meant from your source I can’t say with certainty. However, at first glance I would say yes.

I often use some form of the word “convict” to describe when I know that I need to do or say something (or not do/say) when I’ve prayed on it. Not an I’m at peace kind of thing but a very strong knowledge, if you will.

Satan condemns? Sure. He is called the accuser so I think that fits.

This view has also been held by some of the early Church Fathers, such as St. Jerome.

But the notion of Satan condeming is not Catholic, even if it can be found in some very early Church writings. God’s justice is sovereign, and in the end, even Satan will be thrown in the “lake of fire” (= hell), where he cannot really “condemn” anyone.

In choosing to go against God’s love and justice - Satan condemned himself - as in effect humans can also do so if they wilfully so wish.

God loves us all, but will not force salvation on us against our will and acceptance.

Satan condemned himself. He cannot condemn others.

We convict ourselves by committing mortal sins and if we die unrepentant then we condemn ourselves.

A very interesting proposition I must say. Makes me think - and it’s too early on Saturday for THAT…:D…

You are asking if this holds true in Catholicism…which seems to indicate that it is accepted as true in another tradition. If so, could you share where this comes from so that one can research it further?

The problem with such a short (4 word) assertion like this is that it leaves too much open to interpretation. By that I mean, much can depend on an individual’s understanding of how things work.
Someone mentioned St Faustina’s view of hell. When I read it, I immediately thought of St Catherine of Sienna’s description of judgement in “Dialogues”. I’m sure various descriptions by other saints, theologians, popes etc can be brought to bear. It just depends.

To offer my own view…let’s first consider the opposite formation of the statement:
Satan convicts, God condemns.
To me this actually sounds more correct.
The word “convict” gives us “conviction” and we determine what our convictions will be. So both God and Satan will seek to influence (convict) us in this but it is we who decide what convictions to hold. God’s influence is Love, truth and justice - Satan’s influence is hate, and deceit and vengeance etc.
However, it is God who makes the rules, Satan does not. That which is condemned by God stays condemned. If we embrace that which God condemns, then we too will be condemned.

Anyway - those are my thoughts…

where’s the coffee…:coffeeread:


Romans 8:33-34 looks pretty Catholic to me. Now perhaps that passage does not say that people are condemned to hell by Satan, but it certainly does suggest that Satan condemns.

That statement, is just a smattering of what it really means…

God Saves rather than convicts. So in following Satans path rather than Gods can condemn us.

All ‘goodness’ from God…

James 1:17 Every good endowment and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

And that is why we need the mercy of God to Save us because we will never be worthy of God on our own due to our fallen nature, and why we are in need of Our Savior Jesus Christ.


Karen…I think that this really nails it and the rest of the post is a wonderfully concise explanation.

I do think that the statement is a great “talking point”…Things like this can get us thinking about things and delving a bit…and that can often be a good thing.


Romans 8: 31 onwards is a rhetorical device, in which St. Paul tells us that no one can condemn us once God has chosen us as His own. There’s no mention of Satan at all in those two verses (33 and 34):

*Who shall accuse against the elect of God? God is he that justifieth:
Who is he that shall condemn? Christ Jesus that died: yea that is risen also again, who is at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
(Romans 8: 33-34, Douay-Rheims-Challoner)


This! :thumbsup:

Pope John Paul II said essentially the same when he said, God doesn’t send anyone to hell, they go their on their own, by rejecting God.


LOL, I didn’t mean condemnation in the sense of damnation, I meant it in the sense of guilt and shaming. Protestants tend to say that God shows us our sins and gently urges us to repent, whereas Satan (according to them) shames us and rubs our noses in it. So, is that actually true, or no?

That translation has the meaning wrong. The passage says “God is the one who justifies; who is the one who condemns?” There is no future tense in the passage, nor any suggestion of a future tense. Hence, in the Greek, there would appear to be someone actually condemning.

I’m not sure if this proves my point, however. The issue is with whether attempted condemnation entails successful condemnation, in the Scriptures. I don’t know the answer.

Well - -
First of all Satan will try to hide our sins behind a veil of self-justifications and other devises. In this way he hope that we will deny that we are sinning at all (or at least seriously) so that we do not repent or feel shame etc. So he definitely does not “rub our nose in it”. Instead he tries to build up and to encourage the bad behaviors.

If and when one DOES find ones self convicted in our sins…and his earlier arguments are not working, Satan will whip out “despair” as his trump card. He will try to convince us that we are not worthy of forgiveness. That God will never forgive what we have done.

Perhaps this attempt to cause us to “despair” is what you are referring to when you say he “shames us and rubs our noses in it.”


It’s a rhetorical device.

Suppose I was to say: “Who would be dumb enough to stick their finger in a light socket?”

I’m not referring to anyone in particular. I’m just making a point about the stupidity of the act concerned.

Similarly, St. Paul is not referring to Satan; he’s just saying that once God has saved, nothing and no one can condemn.

(Also, as a purist, I’d say the Douay-Rheims-Challoner is one of the best translations out there.)

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