Richie, on 12 July 2011 - 06:53 PM, said:
I think it's more that which produces death, not death itself. In John 8:44 Jesus said the devil was a murderer and refers to Cain. He is the prototype of those who put Christ to death: they exhibited the same spirit.
No, not Cain - you didn't read the rest of the verse: "when he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it" it is talking about the serpent, not Cain, so the first part must be, also.
The serpent was the first murderer, even before Cain. As a consequence of the serpent's lie, Adam and Eve sinned and thus died. Without its lie, they would not have died. So the original serpent is symbolic of and equated with the devil, the deceiver which deceives the whole world (Rev 12:9, Rev 20:2), as the original serpent deceived Eve (2 Cor 11:3, 1 Tim 2:13-14). It represents that source of temptation which has the power or strength of death (Heb 2:14), and of course that happens through the normal process: desire -> temptation -> sin -> death (Jas 1:14-15).
This applies to every human being, from Adam onwards. It is by no means limited to the people who put Christ to death in the first century. We are all guilty of sin, and because of that, Jesus had to die to take away our sins. Focussing on the devil as somehow linked particularly to the Jewish world misses that basic point.
Edited by Mark Taunton, 12 July 2011 - 07:24 PM.