Samuel Johnson calls envy the most malignant of vices, because it diminishes another’s good without increasing one’s own. A thief at least gets some goods as the result of his theft, but the envious man in attacking another only wounds and does not profit. The spiritual being whom Christians call the Adversary knows that he cannot win against God in a direct contest, but he can attack God’s glory, that is, the perception of God’s goodness and wisdom by men and angels. In an unfallen world, God would be transparent in all creation. No one could doubt his existence or his goodness. But in a fallen world, the chief source of disquiet about the very existence of God, or . . .
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