God tests every human being in this world. And according to the morals and faith people show in this world, He determines where their real life will be lived, either Hell or Heaven. This test which God has created for His subjects, is extremely easy and comfortable. The duty of the individual is to live the life that God wishes, one which brings happiness and peace in this world too. In this test, God has created satan as a negative force against faith. As God mentions in His verses, by insinuating unfounded suspicions into people's thoughts, by suggesting faithlessness, or through other peoples actions and speechs, satan tries to divert people from religion, from God's commands, and good morals. To achieve this he tries every possible method and sets up many different traps for people. The fact that satan is the enemy of human beings is mentioned in one of the verses:
You who believe! Enter Islam totally. Do not follow in the footsteps of satan. He is an outright enemy to you. (Surat al-Baqara, 208)
But, the traps laid by satan are quite ineffective and anyone who looks at them with faithful eyes can see them and break them. God tells us in the Qur'an that satan's tricks are quite inadequate and that they have no telling effect.
As is stated in the verse: “When Our judgment has been passed, satan will say, ‘God made you a promise, a promise of truth, and I made you a promise but broke my promise. I had no authority over you, except that I called you and you responded to me. Do not, therefore, blame me but blame yourselves. I cannot come to your aid nor you to mine. I reject the way you associated me with God before.' The wrongdoers will have a painful punishment.” (Surah Ibrahim, 22), satan has no coercive power, so the believer is the one with the strength. And this is a great comfort.
Another verse mentions that satan has no independent will:
Satan was correct in his assessment of them and they all followed him, except for a group of true believers. He had no authority over them except to enable Us to know those who believe in the Hereafter from those who are in doubt about it. Your Lord takes cognizance of all things. (Surah Saba’, 20-21)
Satan not having any influence on people is an advantage granted by God. Satan only whispers wickedness, denial, and immorality and calls upon people to deny God. However, uses no force on people to do these things; his traps are weak and can be seen through. One need not strive very hard to be liberated from satan's influence. Anyone who can think a little can see the reality and not go along with satan. For example, satan can show the worldly life as very attractive and beautiful. He can make a young person feel as if the world will never end and try to tie him to this worldly life with passion. However, for a person who is intelligent and reasonable, the efforts of satan are quite weak and ineffective. One, who thinks and knows that one day everyone will eventually die, that everything that seems attractive in this world is ephemeral and, when compared to the things in Heaven definitely insufficient and unsatisfactory, will have broken satan's trap. Or, again, satan whispers arrogance and vanity. In this case, one who thinks of his own vulnerability and shortcomings, or who remembers that when he dies one day his body will decay under the earth, will easily thwart satan's propositions.
Obviously, this ease is for those pious people who sincerely have no desire to live under satan's influence, and who aim at earning God's approval, mercy, and Heaven. Otherwise, that is, when one doesn't fear God and submit to Him, and does not care for God's approval, it will be very easy for him to walk right into satan's ambush. God, informs us on the contrary that satan will have no effect on pious people:
He said, "I swear by Your might, that I will mislead all of them except for Your chosen servants among them." (Surah Sad, 82-83)
In spite of this, the fate of those people who respond to satan's calls and befriend him is thus explained:
“He led me astray from the Reminder after it came to me.” satan always leaves man in the lurch. (Surat al-Furqan, 29)2009-01-29 21:56:02