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Sunday, May 15, 2011

When did Satan rebel?

Satan is the fallen angel Lucifer that rebelled against God. But when did this rebellion occur? During the six days of creation, God created the heavens and the Earth. Is that when Lucifer was created? Did God create an angel and it rebelled within days of being created? By the time Adam and Eve were created, it would seem that Lucifer had already rebelled. After all, the devil is who tempted Eve. And the devil is the fallen angel Lucifer. If he was created when the heavens and Earth were created and had rebelled by the time man was created, that means that God was fighting Lucifer at the same time he was creating the universe. Now, I have read accounts that say God created the angels before he created Earth. How long before Earth was created were the angels created? If God had not yet created the heavens, where exactly where the angels hanging out? If the angels could exist before the heaven and the earth was created, does that mean they do not have form? But that does not seem to fit the standard concept of an angel. And in what way could Lucifer physically rebel if he had no form? If it was not a physical rebellion, in what way was God threatened? If the heavens and the Earth had not yet been created, then the world was a void, without form. I assume the heavens were too. If nothing had been created, how could angels have been created? If they were not created before the heavens and the Earth, then we are back with the question of just how quickly did Lucifer rebel?

We also have this verse. Isa. 14:12 "How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations!" This passage says that Lucifer brought actual nations down. That would mean that he was still an angel after the creation of Adam and Eve and the fall of man. But the bible says that the snake, meaning the devil, who is the fallen angel Lucifer, is the one who tempted Eve. How is that possible if Lucifer was still an angel in good standing that was bringing down nations. (Why god would want his angels to bring down nations is another question, but let us stay on topic here)

However, the verse also goes on to say this. Isa. 14:12 How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! 13You said in your heart, "I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. 14I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High." 15But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit. 16Those who see you stare at you, they ponder your fate: "Is this the man who shook the earth and made kingdoms tremble, 17the man who made the world a desert, who overthrew its cities and would not let his captives go home?"

Look at section 16. "Is this the MAN who shook the earth---" The bible is referring to the person who was cast down from heaven as a man. That can hardly be the angel Lucifer. Which seems to show that the verse has nothing to do with Lucifer. But Christians point to this as proof that Satan was an angel who was cast out from heaven. Here is a website that discusses this very topic.

It occurred to me that the idea of Satan rebelling has never been defined within the context of the time frame of the creation of the universe; at least not that I have read about. But it seems that if god created Lucifer and he was the greatest of the angels, there had to be some time involved here. How did Lucifer become the greatest? He must have done something amazing to deserve that praise. Perhaps it was bringing down more nations than the other angels.

If the universe was without form, how could Lucifer have done anything to be considered the greatest. In other words, there had to be a created universe for Lucifer to have done something to be the greatest. But if the universe had not yet been created, how is that possible? And if he rebelled the day he was created, how did he have time to become the greatest angel. If he was created before creation ( a contradiction in terms) then there was obviously something besides the void.

Now Ezekiel 28:11-17] says this about Lucifer and why he was the greatest:

(v. 11) '''The word of the LORD came to me:
(v. 12) "Son of man, take up a lament concerning the king of Tyre and say to him: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: " 'You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.
(v. 13) You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz and emerald, chrysolite, onyx and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and beryl. Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared.
[Note that this cannot be referring to the King of Tyre who never took residence in the garden of Eden, nor was adorned with every precious stone prepared at the moment of his creation, nor was a guardian cherub angel. Hence a supernatural angelic being of great power is in view]
(v. 14) You were anointed as a guardian cherub, for so I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God; you walked among the fiery stones.
[Note that a cherub angel was one of supreme authority and importance]
(v. 15) You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you.
[Notice that Lucifer was perfect in his ways from the day that he was created, until sin was found in him. Also note that the King of Tyre was not blameless from the day he was created, but born in sin]
(v. 16) Through your widespread trade you were filled with violence, and you sinned. So I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, O guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones.
(v. 17) Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth; I made a spectacle of you before kings." '''

This says that Lucifer was the greatest because of his beauty. However, the biblical god does not consider physical beauty to be of any worth.:
1 Samuel 16:7 ESV

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”

1 Peter 3:4 ESV
But let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious.

Matthew 23:27 ESV
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people's bones and all uncleanness.

If physical beauty is what made Lucifer the greatest angel, then god is inconsistent with his view on this. It also creates a conflict with the idea that god is all knowing. God says regarding Lucifer" 'You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty." However, if god is all knowing, he would know that Lucifer would one day rebel. Any angel that would rebel against god cannot be the model of perfection and full of wisdom. If god did not know that Lucifer would rebel, then he is not all knowing. If he knew he would rebel and still considered him the model of perfection and full of wisdom, then he is an idiot.

Also consider this verse. 

Ezekiel 28:15

New International Version (NIV)

15 You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you.

According to this verse, Satan was originally without blame. Therefore, god created this angel with no blemish at all. However, god is all knowing and therefore knew that this blameless angel would rebel and become the devil before he created him. Yet he created him anyway. We are supposed to believe that a deity who is without flaw and cannot abide sin would create a fallen angel who sins every moment of his existence. 

This story creates yet another contradiction for the accuracy of the bible. It also shows the absurdity of an all knowing god. 


  1. This chapter may interest you:

  2. Pearl of Great Price, Book of Moses: Chapter 4
    How Satan became the devil—He tempts Eve—Adam and Eve fall, and death enters the world.

    1 And I, the Lord God, spake unto Moses, saying: That Satan, whom thou hast commanded in the name of mine Only Begotten, is the same which was from the beginning, and he came before me, saying—Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor.

    2 But, behold, my Beloved Son, which was my Beloved and Chosen from the beginning, said unto me—Father, thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever.

    3 Wherefore, because that Satan rebelled against me, and sought to destroy the agency of man, which I, the Lord God, had given him, and also, that I should give unto him mine own power; by the power of mine Only Begotten, I caused that he should be cast down;

    4 And he became Satan, yea, even the devil, the father of all lies, to deceive and to blind men, and to lead them ecaptive at his will, even as many as would not hearken unto my voice.

    5 And now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which I, the Lord God, had made.

    6 And aSatan put it into the heart of the serpent, (for he had drawn away many after him,) and he sought also to beguile Eve, for he knew not the mind of God, wherefore he sought to destroy the world.

    7 And he said unto the woman: Yea, hath God said—Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? (And he spake by the mouth of the serpent.)

    8 And the woman said unto the serpent: We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden;

    9 But of the fruit of the tree which thou beholdest in the midst of the garden, God hath said—Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

    10 And the serpent said unto the woman: Ye shall not surely die;


  3. I don't exactly see why God would be an idiot for creating something he new would rebel. I sometimes create things I know are going to fail. Not for any practical reason. Because I can. Because sometimes, watching something fail is interesting. I think of games like Dwarf Fortress, where the goal is how you fail, not how you win. It's a creation method.

    I also think you totally missed the whole bit about Satan being Leviathan, as recorded in Isaiah 27. And God says he created Leviathan to play in the sea in Psalm 104.

    So yes. God created something he knew would fail, because he did. I don't see why there has to be a reason to create something. As a person who works with art and architecture, sometimes failing art is an art of itself that tells a story you want to tell.

    1. Whatever you create is not going to be tempting mankind and leading them to hell. Not the same issue at all.

      So, god created Leviathan to play in the sea? And Leviathan is Satan? The same Satan who was created by god as an angel who rebelled and was the snake in the Garden? lol.

    2. JW, After reading this thread I went back and read the "fall of man" and no where does the Bible specifically say that the serpent WAS Satan. No I have been a Christian for a very long time and I have heard almost every preacher teach it as though the serpent was Satan. So, although there is always a possibility that Satan was using the serpent, because the text does not support that conclusion, I believe that it is wrong for us to teach it that way. So, not sure where you stand on all this Christian stuff, but thanks for bringing that up and by the way the same thing no doubt goes for Leviathan LOL.

  4. You are forgetting that we are created beings. It is not a very popular mind set lately, but God did not go through all this trouble just so he could come and rescue us for our own sakes. Instead, he created us knowing that Adam would sin. He did however go through all this so that we would be object lessons to his wisdom, his mercy, his justice etc. You and I are object lessons. I know that sounds very callous, but think about it. If you create something, don't you have the right to use that object for any purpose? That is us. In Romans God is very clear about this. Who are we to be object lessons of God's nature to? Well, Ephesians 3:10-11 makes it clear that God is using us the church to make his wisdom known to "rulers and authorities in the heavenly realm". Come on guys, do you really think God has been sitting around for all eternity just waiting to create us and earth. There's a whole lot more going on up there than we have been told. That's rational thought right there. It's also purely human for use to think it's all about us. God is all knowing, therefore for him to create an angel that was going to fall, humans who would sin and rebel makes perfect sense if He had a purpose in all of this. Again, rational thought says that if you or I create something it is typically for a specific purpose...not just to see what might happen (generally speaking that is). So get with the program all you created beings. Do you want to be object lessons of God's wrath or of his mercy? The choice is yours.

  5. So you leave us with an either or choice?
    You claim God is either not all knowing because he would not create Lucifer to fail or He knew Lucifer would fail while at the same time claiming him to be perfection and wise, which makes God an idiot? You are claiming either that God is either not all knowing or an idiot?

    There may be an idiot here but it is not God. Have you never attempted the impossible? Something which you knew had an extremely high chance of failure? I have many times. There are some things which I believe in so much that I would try them even if I were certain they would fail. Love can be like that, you can love something so much that you would love it anyway, even if that love were not returned to you. God so loved the world that He was willing to suffer rejection from that world. It is all about love, not object lessons, not winning or losing, it is about love.

  6. You are still missing the main point. God is not attempting something that had a high chance of failure. He is doing something that he knows with a 100% certainty will fail.

    1. You are absolutely right JW Dixon. That is amazing when you think about it and really should put an entirely different slant on what we Christians call salvation. By that I mean that surely there must be a deeper purpose to all this than just that God set us up to fail so He could come and rescue us. I think the Bible tells us in many places that God is using us as object lessons, after all we are "created", to show something about who He is to other heavenly rulers and authorities. Eph 3 is a pretty good start on explaining that.

  7. For Christ's sake don't you people realise the crux of the matter. It's all about interpreting tbe specific words in the bible. People make different conclusions. What I find extraordinary is the old testament is made up of the majority of s scriptures of that in the Jewish bible, but in a different order which makes you see everything in a new light. If the mother of all nations is eve, then God must be good and bad, the bad part obviously being the human race started with incest as many peoples and religions call each other brother and sister. We all know that's wrong, right. Cause incest is wrong Hey but here's a question for all you evolutionists. There must of been a first few creatures that eventually evolved to what is now which also makes us all like brother and sisters. I think creationism is wrong as it is written in the torah.the jews are all stem from interbred beings anyhow. God shall be revealing the truth soon

  8. I think you have missed the point. God gave the angels choice just like us. Satan got a big head and decided he could over throw God. Didn't work out to well for Satan.
    The snake originally had lots of legs and God took the legs away from the snake. The snake listened to Satan and tricked Eve into eating the forbidden fruit.
    This is why God told the snake he will crawl on his belly and strike at man's heel and man will hate him.

  9. What a total waste of time—men trying to figure out the mind of God! Get a life people. You either believe or you don't. Stop arguing over how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. Spend time in prayer and thanksgiving meditating on Calvary and the love of our risen Savior. Work to bring unity, NOT division.

    1. I love what one theologian said about Christianity. "Simple enough for a child to understand and yet deep enough to keep men interested and engaged in debate for years". That may not be an exact quote, but the point is that I believe God wants us to debate and stay engaged. Debate is good as it sharpens each of us and our knowledge of God, redemption and transformation...but yes, it should be done in unity, and it can be.

  10. How can Lucifer, a created angelic being exist in a heaven and the earth not yet created?? Where did he hang out???

    There is a spiritual realm, and a physical or material realm. The spiritual realm can only be accessed by spiritual abilities. Lucifer was a created spiritual being, angelic in nature.

    The heavens and the earth of Genesis one, is a physical material universe and can be seen and measured by physical senses, human means.

    The six layers of the earth's atmosphere, troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, thermosphere, ionosphere, and the exospehere, is said to extend for about 190,000 kms. The atmosphere might be described as "sky." Then we have outerspace (also called 'sky') where all our neighbourly rocks and comets, and gas balls, and light bulbs, etc hang out. These are the physical heavens referred to in Genesis one.

    God does not need to dwell in a physical universe. His throne is in that Spiritual Heavenly realm. Just as our homes are restricted to certain persons, so is God's dwelling place.

    Lucifer, created as a finite spiritual being with finite piritual qualities, was given a will to exercise in obedience to God his Creator, or in rebellion against Him. He chose the latter. It was irreversible. Rebellion is the complete opposite to obedience.

    God has laws for all His creation. One is simply put - What you sow you will reap (generously).
    Because Lucifer chose to rebel, that brought all his original gifts, beauty, wisdom and skills, etc,
    from being all in order and alignment with His Creator, into complete and utter ruin, disorder, and disrepair.
    The gifts God gave to Lucifer were finite in quantity and were local, not universal. Perfect beauty had now become perfect ugliness to its extreme. The perfect wisdom he once had, had now become foolishness to the extreme. The quality of goodness he had had in its purest form, was now evil to its extreme. His amazing power, which was honourable, good and beneficial, was now the complete opposite. His light had become darkness.
    His name once describing his original character, light bearer, or shining one (a great honour) was now changed to Satan which means adversary and perfectly describes his new character - total and irreversible rebellion.

    The question "When did Satan rebel? (technically should be “When did Lucifer rebel?”) though we know what is meant, was not done in the physical realm, but in the spiritual realm.
    If we can understand that, then the "When" factor becomes less important.

    The spiritual realm is not measured in human terms, however, man's curiosity is insatiable. As Solomon said "The eye is never full of seeing, nor the ear full of hearing," Ecclesiastes 1:8.

    Dear friends, the more important question we should be really asking is: Will we continue to rebel against our Creator God like Lucifer did and like Adam and his wife did?

    Adam did not act in faith and obedience. He acted upon his five senses and the "if it feel good, do it" rationale.
    That philosophy will produce in the end:
    - spiritual death - which is not annihilation but permanent removal from God's good presence.
    - eternal sadness, dishonour, shame, curses, torment beyond imaginations.
    - eternal hopelessness, despair and regret.
    - unending remorse of a lost opportunity to avoid that place of torment.

    Satan is in his own little hell now - Permanent disatisfaction, and restlessness.

    Let us be wise. Obey the gospel of Jesus Christ. He died in our place to remove our sinful record. He took our punishment. Call on His name today. We have today. God's salvation is for today. not yet ours, it is in God's hands.