Perhaps what most strikes the naïve reader of the Book of Revelation is what a close-run thing the battle is. When God finally gets tired of waiting it out and decides to end things, the back-and-forth between dragons and serpents and sea monsters and Jesus is less like a scouring of the stables than like a Giants-Patriots Super Bowl. It seems that Manichaeanism-bad god vs. good god-is the natural religion of mankind and that all faiths bend toward the Devil, to make sense of God’s furious impotence. A god omniscient and omnipotent and also powerless to stop evil remains a theological perplexity, even as it becomes a prop of faith. It gives you the advantage of clarity-only one guy worth worshipping-at the loss of lucidity: if he’s so great, why is he so weak?
Adam Gopnik, “The Big Reveal”, The New Yorker (5 March 2012), 80.