I joined the ministry 15 years ago as a young man who yearned to learn more about Jesus Christ. I have always followed His ways, as He has taught me in the Bible. As a born-again Christian, I have always enjoyed doing Bible study with younger Christians while addressing some of their biblical queries. One recently came across Beelzebub in his Bible study and wanted to know whether it refers to Satan. He particularly wanted to learn the difference between Satan and Beelzebub.
Although some theological sources have quoted the two names to mean the same, some scholars have argued that the two names are of different beings. While Satan is described as an angel cast out of heaven after falling out with God in Luke 10:18, Beelzebub is described as the Prince of the Devils in Matthew 12:24-27. They both belong to the kingdom of darkness and are enemies of God. The Bible mentions Satan at least 49 times, while Beelzebub is mentioned only twice. These are some of the differences that support the argument that Satan and Beelzebub are two different creatures.
I welcome you to join me in this article as we discuss the differences between Satan and Beelzebub. We will also discuss why Satan was called Beelzebub in the Bible. Furthermore, we will learn about the name Beelzebub and its meaning in the Bible. Read to the end to learn more about these topics.
Characteristic differences between Satan and Beelzebub
Although some scholars have claimed that the two names mean the same, some have pointed out specific differences. Beelzebub is mentioned in 2 Kings 1:1-18 and is referred to as the God of Ekron. He was also described as the God of flies who could heal people from injuries the fly caused. This was when Ahaziah, the King of Samaria, had injured himself and decided to send his messengers to consult Beelzebub, the God of Ekron, about his cure.
God was angered by this and sent Elijah to ask the messengers why they were consulting Beelzebub, yet there was a God in Israel. The King was cursed with death for honoring the God of Ekron.
Satan is described as a fallen angel of God. He had been created as a cherub, one of the highest angels of God, but pride got the better of him, and he coveted the throne of God as in Ezekiel 28:12-17 Together with an army of other rebellious angels, they lodged a fight against God. They were defeated by the army of the Lord and thrown out of heaven. They were locked out and banished from entering heaven, and hell was created for them. Satan is described as being the Prince of Evil and one of God’s biggest adversaries.
So while Beelzebub is described as a god capable of healing the fly injuries, Satan is described as a fallen angel of God whose pride made him fall out of his relationship with God.
Are there differences in meaning between Beelzebub and Satan?
Beelzebub is a name derived from the Greek word, Baal-zebub, who was a Philistine god. Baal was the name of the Canaanite fertility gods. Zebul translates to “exalted dwelling.” Combining the names, two meanings arise, the Lord of Flies and the Prince of Demons.
On the other hand, Satan means the one who opposes or is the adversary in 1 Peter 5:8. He is an enemy of the works of God and uses deceit to try and influence the people of God from doing the right thing. He once worked for God, but his fallout made him a deceiver who always fights to ensure God loses His people through temptations.
Why Was Satan Called Beelzebub in the Bible?
Beelzebub is believed to be a name used by the Jews to refer to Satan. He was a Philistine god, also called the God of filth. Beelzebub also means Prince of the Demons, believed to be Satan himself. By referring to Satan as Beelzebub, the Pharisees were out to prove that Jesus was using the power of the Prince of demons in the healing of the people rather than the power of God.
What does the name Beelzebub mean in the Bible?
In the Bible, the name Beelzebub means the Prince of Demons, as in Matthew 12:24-27 The Prince of Demons is also called Satan, the biggest enemy of God. The Prince of Demons is the leader of the kingdom of darkness in a constant fight with the Kingdom of God. Beelzebub is therefore tasked with ensuring that the army of God is properly fought with their powers of darkness.
Where can I find a mention of the name Beelzebub in the Bible?
The name Beelzebub is mentioned in the Bible in Kings, Matthew, and Mark. The first appearance of this name took place in 2 Kings 1:1-18 when Ahaziah, the King of Samaria, angered God by sending his men to consult Beelzebub, the God of Ekron, about his illness.
The King had fallen and injured himself and needed his injury cured, and that is when he sent his men to Beelzebub. Through His prophet Elijah, God sent a message to the proud King Ahaziah that He would die for consulting a pagan God, yet the true God of Israel was there to be consulted too.
The second time the name Beelzebub appears in the Bible is in Matthew 9:34, where the Pharisees accused Jesus of casting out a demon using the power of Beelzebub. In Matthew 10:24, the Pharisees also used this term to describe Jesus Christ. In Matthew 12:22-24, Jesus Christ restored the speech and sight of a mute and blind man who was also demon-possessed, and several people were amazed and asked if he was the Son of David, the promised Messiah. However, the Pharisees doubted him as usual and claimed that Jesus Christ had used the power of Beelzebub to heal the sick man. The Pharisees were therefore known to be the people who liked crediting the miracles of Jesus to Beelzebub instead of the true God of Israel.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.