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Why is the Devil Called “The Accuser”?

October 17, 2013 by  
Filed under Demonology, Fr. Fortea

Father Fortea, why is the devil called “The Accuser”?

“For the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God” (Revelation 12:10).

Every time we sin, Satan rejoices, and he never lets pass an opportunity for pointing out our offenses to God. In this for post on the accusersense, he “accuses” us before the Creator. Remember: when the devil wants to talk to God, he only has to direct himself to Him. God listens to everything the devil says to Him; He knows every thought that comes from a demon. This type of communication between God and Satan is reflected as much in the book of Job when they both speak as in the book of Zechariah (see Zechariah 3:1).

Satan’s only purpose here is to remind God of the many times he triumphs over us, i.e., the many times he is successful in tempting us to sin. After the Last Judgment, sin will no longer be possible and, as such, the devil will not be able to accuse us of anything.

Editor’s Note:  To learn more about spiritual warfare and demonology, Catholic Spiritual Direction recommends Fr. Fortea’s excellent book, Interview With An Exorcist – An Insider’s Look at the Devil, Demonic Possession, and the Path to Deliverance.

Art: Gargoyles, Magdalen College, Oxford England, photographed by Chris Creagh, 27 July 2009 own work, CCA-SA 3.0 Unported, Wikimedia Commons.

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About Fr. Jose Antonio Fortea

Father José Antonio Fortea is not only an exorcist, but also a writer, and parish priest. He once thought he would lead what he has termed ordinary life as an attorney in Madrid, much as his father did before him, but sensed instead a vocation to the priesthood in his adolescent years. A theology graduate of Navarre University in Spain, Father Fortea wrote a thesis there on exorcism. He has been a practicing exorcist for several decades.

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  • RobinJeanne

    So this article says the opposite (or so it seems) to the one not long ago, Do God and the Devil Talk among Themselves? ……
    Now I’m confused…..

    • LizEst

      RobinJeanne – Some of the responses on that post offer excellent explanations for this. God does know the devils thoughts…but not so the other way around. They don’t have a discussion like what you and I have. They are not on the same wave length. If it were in Satan’s power to destroy God, he would do so…and he tried once with Christ. But, you see where that got him. Christ saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven! Now, Satan is defeated in eternity and God really has nothing more to say to him. But, Old Scratch is full of hatred and is still working on destroying us. We are his secondary targets. Thank God for Christ’s salvific work! Blessed be God.

      • RobinJeanne

        Thanks Liz, I do see what you’re saying, it goes right alone with “Do God and the Devil Talk among Themselves?
        I guess if one were to read this one first then the other, it might not seem as a contridiction, just an explination on what do they mean by conversation… which as you said is simple God knowing everything… so not really a one on one conversation.

  • Mary G

    So Father is further explaining that God does not communicate directly to the devil. He called it a “type of conversation”. He further explains that there is no need for God to converse as man does. God already knows everything! Father mentions The Book of Zechariah, where the “conversation” is one-sided. In Zech 3:1-2 the angel of God, whom Zechariah stands before, addresses the satan. It is as if the angel already knows what the satan is there for, without being told. And the angel adresses the satan, but the satan does not get a chance to reply! And the angel of The Lord goes on to have the impure garments of the priest ( Zechariah) taken off and clean garments brought in and put on Zeccharaiah. This to me shows how at judgement, fallen “man”, standing before The Lamb of God, will be (has been), made clean in The Blood of Christ. And the devil will just stand there…”speechless”.

  • patricia

    Satan reminds us of our fallen nature and our sins after we have sinned. He has away distorting and manipulating souls to despair by constantly accusing them of thier sins yet it can back fire because a soul who is sensitive to this will run to the merciful Lord and fall at his feet and beg for forgiveness and grace. This is a sweet bitter torment in which the soul can not rest unless it rests in the mercy of God. So the accuser the devil may accuse us souls and try to mock insult God but we know we can return back to him saying Father I have sin I am truly sorry and I ask for your forgiveness. Thank you Father for sharing this post with all us struggling souls.

  • Sorry for my infantile views, but here they are all the same……I do remember Satan talking to God in Job. But after he lost, he never came back. The same when we sin and he comes to torment us and ensures God knows from him – as if God is not Omnipotent to know on His Own – when we have sinned. But he goes away in a mighty fury when we go to Jesus in His Tribunal of Mercy and hears the words: ” I absolve you……” those words send Satan to the deepest, hottest hole in Hell

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