I have been reading (more like imbibing) the transcript of a talk by Fr. Jonathan Tobias. It will bear re-reading several times. I was deeply struck by these two paragraphs:
What is utterly shocking here about these events is, as a kid I always wondered: Why did the devil let Jesus down there in the first place if he knew what was going to happen? Well, the first answer, according to St. Irenaeus and some of the other Fathers, is that he didn’t know that Jesus was fully God. The second answer is even more shocking. The devil and the evil powers, on Holy Friday, Holy Saturday, and Great and Holy Pascha, the devil and the evil powers were ignorant of Trinitarian doctrine and Christology. They didn’t know. Perhaps we shouldn’t be so surprised at this, because the only way to recognize the divinity of Christ is through the witness of the Holy Spirit, and the only way to know God as Trinity is through the willing entry into communion with Trinitarian love.
Thus it is that hell never knew what was coming and still does not understand. The devil, I think, is still an Arian, at best, and may even be agnostic, and he remains fanatically committed to the narrative of chaos and violence about which we were complaining so vociferously at the beginning. You are already a better theologian than the devil, and you will always be. The devil knows lots of facts, but he doesn’t really know.
That is my thought for the day – the one I will consider and reconsider. I recommend the entire transcript. It may be found at this link on Ancient Faith.