What Did Satan Understand?

Q. I am trying to piece together from Scripture what Satan understood of Jesus’ purpose in taking a human body and living among us. I understand that Satan knew who Jesus was. In Matthew 8:29, the demons call Jesus Son of God. I also understand from 1 Corinthians 2:8 that Satan didn’t know what Jesus would accomplish on the cross. I have to believe since Jesus told His disciples many times that He would die and be raised the third day, that Satan also knew this. So what did Satan understand of Jesus’ mission?

A. The Bible doesn’t reveal the extent of Satan’s knowledge, although it’s safe to assume he knew everything in the Old Testament. But we can also assume Satan did not understand the extent to which the Lord’s death would deal with our sins. It carried the potential to completely erase the consequences of all the sins of mankind, from the first man to the last (Colossians 2:13-14). It’s power to pardon us is limited only by our willingness to accept it. In effect Paul said if Satan had understood this he would have done everything possible to prevent the crucifixion (1 Cor. 2:8).

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