Demons are weapons against the devil; Angels: Day 124

Even when the evil angels turn their strength against us, says  St. Augustine, they’re actually  weapons  in our struggle against Satan. If  we don’t despair when we run into trouble, then Satan loses,  and we’re  made stronger by the struggle.You have made me the reproach of the foolish. You have so willed it, that I should live among those, and preach the Truth among those, who love vanity; and I can’t help being laughingstock to them. For “we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels … [Read more...]

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Even the evil angels are God’s instruments; Angels: Day 123

God uses the evil angels as his instruments for correcting us, says St. Augustine. The purpose of these punishments is to bring us back to the right path, so that we won’t be condemned forever at the last judgment.“God is a just judge, strong and patient: is he angry every day?” (Ps. 7:11). What God is judge, but the Lord, who judges the people?He is just; “he will repay every man for what he has done” (Matt. 16:27).He is strong, meaning in endurance; though he is all-powerful, for ou … [Read more...]

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The devil’s power to hurt come’s from God; Angels: Day 122

The devil wills  evil, says St. Augustine, but God’s will is always  done even through the wickedness of the devil. Nevertheless, Satan will be rightfully pun- ished, because his will was, and is, to hurt us.Even the power of those who are hurtful is from God alone. For it is not unrighteous that, when the wicked receive the power of being hurtful, both the patience of the good should be tested and the iniquity of the evil punished. Through power given to the devil Job was tested so that he m … [Read more...]

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Even Satan’s sin accomplished God’s will; Angels: Day 121

God’s plan is so well thought out that even the sinful free will of Satan and the wicked angels could not go against it. In fact, says St. Augustine, God contrives to use their sin, and ours, to bring about his will.These are the great “works of the Lord: sought out according to all his wills” (Ps. 111:2). In fact, they are so wisely “sought out” that, when his angelic and human creation sinned—that is, did not do what he willed, but what it willed— he could still accomplish what he himself h … [Read more...]

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The world belongs to Christ, not Satan; Angels: Day 120

Satan tempted Christ by promising to give him all the kingdoms of  the world. But those are not his to give, says St. Cyril of Alexandria. All the kingdoms of the world already belong to Christ, and any power Satan has is his only by fraud.“And the devil took him up, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time” (Luke 4:5). Malignant, wicked, and cursed being! How did you dare show the Lord all the kingdoms of the whole creation, and say, “All these are mine; now therefo … [Read more...]

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Wrath against the devil is mercy on sinners; Angels: Day 119

Why  does the Psalmist ask God to “arise in your anger”? St. Augustine suggests that this is actually a prayer of charity. The “anger” of the Lord should punish the devil by taking the souls of  sinners away  from him and bringing them back to God.“Arise, O Lord, in your anger” (Ps. 7:6).We say he is perfect. Then why does he incite God to anger? Shouldn’t we ask instead whether he was perfect who, when he was being stoned, said, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them” (Acts 7:60)?O … [Read more...]

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