Dualism – What is it?
Dualism is the idea that there are two equal powers—good and evil—in competition with one another. Some have adapted this idea into the concept of so-called Christian dualism, the idea that God and Satan (or evil) stand in conflict, with equal power in competing with one another.
What does the Bible teach about the idea of dualism? First, it is clear that there is only one God who created all things (Genesis 1:1). There is no biblical teaching of an equally powerful evil being.
Second, Satan's power is clearly limited and less than God's power. Satan had to request permission to persecute Job (Job 1—2). In the Garden of Eden, the serpent was condemned and judged by God (Genesis 3). Romans 16:20 says that the God of peace will soon crush Satan underneath our feet. Satan's power is clearly weak in comparison with God.
Third, it is clear that Satan's time is short. Revelation 20:10 speaks of Satan's future, stating, "and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever." Satan's time of evil will be ended and his punishment will be eternal.
Sometimes the cultural idea is that God is on one shoulder telling us the right thing to do and Satan is on the other shoulder tempting us to do wrong. However, Satan can be overcome by God at any time. Jesus exemplified how Christians should respond to temptation when He resisted Satan three times in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11). Jesus quoted God's Word each time, offering an example to us as well as resulting in Satan leaving Jesus.
Ephesians 6:12 speaks of the spiritual battle that takes place between Christians and spiritual forces of evil. Christians are given many spiritual resources by God to help overcome Satan. If Satan cannot even defeat God's people, how much weaker is he against God Himself?
Dualism is not a biblical concept, but a philosophical one that finds itself in conflict with the clear teachings of Scripture. God is never in fear of Satan, nor should we be in fear of his schemes. We are called instead to be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power (Ephesians 6:10).
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