As a Christian raised by a pastor father, I started hearing about Satan from a young age. I remember my father explaining that Satan is described as the devil in the Bible. By the time I joined Bible school, I was eager to learn more about the meaning of Satan in various languages, such as Greek. This made me ask my lecturer, “What does Satan mean in Greek?”
Research suggests that in Greek, Satan is translated as Satanas. In Greek, the term Satan is synonymous with the term devil, which means accuser or slanderer. The Bible describes Satan as the slanderer in Genesis 3:2-5 since he slandered God’s character by lying to Eve to eat the forbidden fruit. On the other hand, Revelations 12:10 suggests that Satan is the accuser of believers.
In this article, I invite you to join me as we explore the topic of the meaning of Satan in Greek. Keep reading to learn whether Satan originates from Greek and much more!
Does Satan originate from Greek?
No. Research suggests that the term Satan does not originate from Greek but from Hebrew. According to theologians, the name Satan derives from the Hebrew Ha-satan, a combination of two terms: Ha, which means “the”, and Satan, meaning opposer. Christians believe that Satan is the opposer since his main role is to oppose God’s word and purpose, as explained in 2nd Corinthians 11:3.
In Greek, the word Satan is believed to be Satanas and is synonymous to the devil. This word, the devil, is believed to come from the Greek word diabolos. The word devil is commonly used in the Septuagint (The Hebrew Bible) to translate the Hebrew Term Satan.
The Greek word for Satan is believed to mean accuser or slanderer. Christians believe that the devil is called a slanderer since his work is to slander humanity and God. For instance, in the Garden of Eden, he slandered God’s character (Genesis 3:2-5). They also argue that the devil plays the role of a slanderer when he attacks Job’s character, as explained in Job 1:2.
Does the Bible use the Greek version of Satan?
Yes. Though the Old Testament does not use the Greek version of Satan translated as “the devil”, this is a popular name that appears several times in the New Testament. For instance, the term devil appears in the story of Jesus in the wilderness as described in Matthew 4:1. This verse says, Then Jesus was led up by the spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. It suggests that one of the roles of the devil is to tempt people to sin, just like he did with Jesus in the wilderness.
The Bible also uses the Greek version of Satan in Matthew 13:39. This Bible verse suggests that Satan/ the devil is the enemy of humanity. In 1st Peter 5:8, the devil is also mentioned and is likened to a lion that goes about seeking its prey. Another mention of the devil in the Bible is in John 8:44, which suggests that he was a murderer from the beginning.
They say that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, right? Being raised by Christians significantly impacted my life since I started professing Christ from a young age. My passion for the Christian faith made me pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology. I am a believer and pastor dedicated to spreading the word of God. I have been in the Christian ministry for over a decade and am currently ministering in Life Christian Church. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Please check the About Us Page for more details.