In the beginning God made everything, and all He made was perfect. But the serpent (Satan) that God made sinned against him. He tempted Eve to eat from the tree that God told them not to eat from. How, all God made was perfect? Everything God made was perfect but how come the serpent wasn’t? God did make the serpent.
In the beginning, God created angels and humans good—but with free will. They had the freedom to serve God, or… they had the freedom to choose to sin, and serve themselves. Do not confuse this with now—now (since sin came into the world) we suffer from a “bondage of the will”… our will is bound to serve sin unless God frees us to serve Him. But it wasn’t always like that.
In Latin there is a helpful way for us to remember this. It uses three words: “non” = “not”; “posse” = “able”; and “peccare” = “sin.”
- In Eden, before the Fall, man was, “posse non peccare” (he was able not to sin)
- After Eden, man became, “non posse non peccare” (he was not able not to sin = he can’t help but sin)
- When Jesus came and took on flesh, He was, “non posse peccare” (He was not able to sin; this is much better than Adam & Eve in paradise! They were “very good” yet they had the ability yet to sin if they so chose… which they did. Jesus is not able to sin).
- And one day, for all His people, He will make us like Him—“non posse peccare”—and we will exist forever, unable to sin again. And so the new earth will be better then even Eden was.
Now if we take all and apply it to Satan: Satan too, we conclude, must have been made “posse non peccare”—he had, in the beginning, the ability not to sin. But he chose, by free will, to become proud. And in his pride he tried to steal God’s throne (see Ezekiel 28:11-19, Isaiah 14:12-14, Jude 6, and Revelation 12:3-9). And—like all sinners who have not bowed the knee to Jesus in repentance and faith—on the Day of Judgement, he will be judged guilty and he will receive the just punishment of eternal hell.
What presses upon my heart thinking through all this, is how much I need Jesus Christ not only to save me, but to keep me saved and recreate me new. How I long for the security and peace of one day—not just of being in heaven—but of never being able to sin again! I need the Triune God to make me—not just “very good”—but “non posse peccare.” And so do you.