If man can tempt himself, why should devil tempt man?
Those sentences which are colored in orange are from Maharishi Dayananda Saraswati book Satyarth Prakash (The Light of Truth) and those which are colored in black are Jerry Thomas’s response.
"And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him." 8:.)C. ~ Now this cannot be true, since if the Christians were asked, "(You hold) that the devil tempts himself, men can also be tempted by themselves; what has the devil to do with this (business) then? But if God be the tempter of the devil, the Christian God then is the greatest devil and He stands guilty of the having tempted all men through him. Can God even do such things? Truth to tell, we should not wonder if those, wrote this book (The Bible) and called Christ the Son of God, were devils, but neither this (book) can be the Word of God, nor its God the true God, nor Christ the Son of God.
Answer: This argument is ridiculously pathetic and sadly evil. First and foremost one fails to understand what is the meaning of “You hold) that the devil tempts himself, men can also be tempted by themselves; what has the devil to do with this (business) then?” Does it mean that there should be a monopoly in the business of tempting that it should either belong to devil or human? After asking questions that fit a mentally challenged person, Maharishi goes on to assume things and then based on his evil assumptions charges the writers of the Holy Bible being evil. Little did he realize that it was his own assumptions that were evil and not the Holy Bible.
Overall, Maharishi appears to have been greatly offended for holding devil responsible. By adapting Maharishi’s language, one can ask was devil the deity of Maharishi for him to get so offended.
However, since Maharishi had asked the question, let us read the Holy Scripture to find the answer, how devil and men can work together.
The Holy Scripture speaks about King and serfs relationship between Satan and evil men:
Ephesians 2: 1- 7 “And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ by grace you have been saved, and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in [His] kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”
Further, LORD Jesus Christ Himself spoke about the father and children relationship between Satan and evil men or even the master and the slave relationship.
John 8: 34-45 Jesus answered them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed. "I know that you are Abraham's descendants, but you seek to kill Me, because My word has no place in you. I speak what I have seen with My Father, and you do what you have seen with your father." They answered and said to Him, "Abraham is our father." Jesus said to them, "If you were Abraham's children, you would do the works of Abraham. But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this. You do the deeds of your father." Then they said to Him, "We were not born of fornication; we have one Father–God." Jesus said to them, "If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me. Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word. You are of [your] father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own [resources], for he is a liar and the father of it. But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me.”
How did the Judas and Satan work together? We read that Judas was called as the son of perdition which explains the relationship.
John 17: 12 “While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.”
Therefore, Judas and Satan worked together as father and the child. There need not be any mutual exclusivity or monopoly in these matters too.