Why did God create the Devil? God is the omnipotent creator of all things. So God created Satan, the fallen angel. He must have known that He was creating the Devil, so why did He do it? And if God is all powerful, why doesn't He simply destroy Satan and free His creation from the influence of evil?

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I agree that free will plays a major part of the whole idea behind the creation of the Devil. God did not create the Devil to be "The Devil." The Devil is a fallen angel and only through the choices made based upon free will.

Outside of that, everything has...

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I agree that free will plays a major part of the whole idea behind the creation of the Devil. God did not create the Devil to be "The Devil." The Devil is a fallen angel and only through the choices made based upon free will.

Outside of that, everything has its opposite: light and dark, animate and inanimate, good and evil. For that reason alone, the Devil must exist.

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You might want to think about the way that free will plays into this whole scenario. How can God, who wants our honest and free love, be a God of relationships if his creation is automatically pre-programmed to love and worship him as if we were robots? That would make the relationship meaningless. Therefore, he has to give his creation a choice to make their own minds up which therefore gives us the choice of following God or going our own way.

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You have raised a version of the famous "problem of evil" question.  You may want to do a search of Google and of Google Books to see how important thinkers have responded to this problem. As you'll see from following the following link, entire books have been devoted to this highly important problem: http://preview.tinyurl.com/3z8zl5u

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I don't know the author, but the worship leader yesterday shared a work she had found which was a whole series of scenarios similar to what we're discussing here: how can you know joy if you never experience sadness? how can you know light if you've never experienced dark? how can you know the complete love and goodness of God if you have never been tempted by the devil?

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You have several admirable answers.  One I cannot help but add is this:  one of the greatest gifts God ever gave man is our free will.  Without temptation to evil, there is no contest.  No choosing to obey God and to do what is right just because we know it to be right.  This is why (it states in the Bible) the angels bow down to humans.  They don't know what it is to be evil...it is not in their nature.  We are the ones who must constantly face temptation and choose not to lie, steal, kill, cheat on our spouses with pornography or another person, gamble, manipulate, ridicule the weak, and attempt to lead others astray for the fun of it. 

Without evil in the world, there is no purpose for free will and for honoring and obeying our Father in Heaven. 

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I would argue that although God did not "create" a Devil, he did give humans free will.  That means that although we are created in God's image and given His guidance to follow, we can still make mistakes.  It was Lucifer's free will that caused him to become the Devil.

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The previous post admirably responds to the issue. The creation of Lucifer was perhaps necessary of man, God's greatest creation was to have free will. It would have been easy for God to fence man in so that he could never fail; but He then would have created a machine, or a robot. His greatest gift to humanity is the gift of choice between right and wrong, good and evil; but there can be no choice unless evil exists. Even after the fall of Lucifer, God could have prevented him from tempting Eve in the Garden of Eden; but he allowed the temptation to occur, and thereby allowing the choice to be man's not God's.

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God created the Devil as Lucifer, an angel. Lucifer chose to defy God and God was saddened by his decision. God allowed Lucifer to fall from grace because he allows all of us free will. God is all powerful and he could have stopped Lucifer. He is also omnipotent and knew what Lucifer would eventually become when he created him. However, he still created him because it was right for him to exist. God could not offer humans free will without something to choose between. God does not create evil but He sometimes allows the things He created to chose evil. He can work through bad things just as He works through the good. In comparison, we are small beings who see only a small slice of the big picture. God sees everything. We cannot know or understand all His purposes with our limited sight.
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