Can God Forgive the Devil?

Recently on The Patrick Madrid Show, 11-year-old Jordan called into the show to ask about the devil and whether he could ever return to God’s favor:

“Would God forgive the devil for what he did?”

Patrick answered by saying that that would be impossible, not because of God’s inability to forgive or the grievousness of the sin but because of the way that angels were made: with elevated intellects and finality to the decisions that they make.

“The devil, being an angel, can’t change his mind. This is hard for us to understand because as human beings, we live in time and we can change our minds,” said Patrick. He gave the example of if Jordan were to disobey his parents and then sincerely apologize for it, he would be resolving not to disobey again. But as humans who are faulted and capable of modifying our resolutions, he might go back on his word, whether on purpose, out of forgetfulness, by mistake, or by giving in to weakness. That isn’t the way angels behave.

Angels don’t have the same opportunities that we do, but they do have more powerful intellects. They are pure spirits and everything that they can know, they know all of it immediately upon being created by God.

“Their decision, based upon what is good and bad, is permanent,” said Patrick. “So, an angel actually can’t change his mind. Once he makes his decision, it’s permanent and he can never change again.” Therefore, all of the good angels who chose to serve God are eternally good. They never committed sins and therefore have no need for reconciliation. They passed their test, so to speak.

The bad angels are in a similar situation, except on the opposite side of the spectrum. When they were presented with the choice of either serving God or serving themselves, they chose the latter. And because they can and will never change their minds, God will not forgive them.

Patrick celebrated the fact that we as humans have infinite chances to repent for our many mistakes and Jordan agreed. While the devil is relegated to a state of hatred for God and his creation, we have been blessed with the sacraments and reconciliation to renew ourselves to God as often as we would like.

Patrick encouraged Jordan and his listeners to take advantage of the fact that we have guardian angels, personal protectors who are capable of warding off both spiritual and physical evils. It’s easy to forget that this invisible spirit is beside us at all times, but the more we ask them to help us, the more they will do it. A good habit is to begin and close each day with a renewed petition of our guardian angels to protect us from evil and help us stay on course for heaven.

Angel of God, my guardian dear to whom God’s love commits me here. Ever this day be at my side, to light and guard, to rule and guide. Amen.

Tune in to The Patrick Madrid Show weekdays 8am – 11am

John Hanretty serves as a Digital Media Producer for Relevant Radio®. He is a graduate of the Gupta College of Business at the University of Dallas. Besides being passionate about writing, his hobbies include drawing and digital design. You can read more of his daily articles at and on the Relevant Radio® app.