5.3 The Devil as the Seducer of Lies and Foe of Virtue
Exorcism Prayer II of the 1952 Wellers Edition of the Roman Ritual of Exorcism translates the latin: "Exi ergo transgressor.. Exi, seductor, plene omni dolo et fallacia, virtutis inimici, innocentium persecutor" as "Depart, then, transgressor. Depart, seducer, full of lies and cunning, foe of virtue, persecutor of the innocent.". Meanwhile, Exorcism Prayer I of the Revised Rite of Exorcism contrasts God as lover of human salvation and the Devil as hostis humanae salutis (enemy of human salvation). And because he does not want anyone to come to God, Satan is deceptor humani generis (deceiver of the human race).
The seduction was very evident when the serpent tempted Eve with something that was so hard to resist: "To be like God"(Genesis 3:5). In the same manner in the temptation of Jesus in the desert, the Devil was tempting Him with something that seemed necessary for human beings --food, wealth, power. (Matthew 4:3-11).
The Devil has so mastered our frail human nature by observing us down through the millennia since that time God created man and woman. He can predict with accuracy our reactions to certain stimuli. He is almost sure that human nature finds great difficulty in resisting instant pleasure. This he surmised seeing that man is intimately connected in body and soul. He understood that nothing can get into a man's soul without passing to the mediation of the senses. Hence, the notion of the good in man is almost always connected first with what is pleasing, with what is pleasurable and sensually gratifying. If the Devil can hit the sweet spot of man by promising him and giving him pleasure of the senses to an astonishing degree, man will open the door to his soul without resistance, and the devil can get in and stay as long as it wants.
Every temptation therefore is premised that at the end is something pleasurable and gratifying. Just like a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. However, the deception of the Devil is to make man believe that God does not want him to experience this pleasure, that is why He gave laws and threatened man with severe punishment like death. "For on the day that you eat of it (the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil), you shall surely die." (Genesis 2:17). And therefore the Devil with little effort is then able to convince man that he is the supreme freedom giver and not God. Consequently, to say no to God, to disobey His precepts is the supreme expression of freedom.
This is an absolute lie of course. However, man is unable to see beyond what is presented to him by the senses, and unless man holds on to the truth of God's promises, unless man truly trust God, then he becomes a toy of the devil which he would dispose off once he gets possession of the person's soul.