Before Creation-The Story Of The Rebellion In Heaven
Before creation of our world, in eternity-past, the Bible tells us that God created an innumerable company of beings called Angels. Perfectly created, these free willed beings existed with God (and still do) in a place called Heaven. “Heaven” where God and His angels dwell is a physical place. However different it may be from ours, God and His Angels do not float around all day in outer space. God’s great love for these beings was made apparent by the fact that He created them Holy in nature, and gave the Angels varying powers and abilities humans cannot imagine. There was perfect order and harmony in Heaven, as these Holy creatures carried out the will of God without question.
Before Creation-Selfless Beings
Created by God as selfless beings, there was no discord or contention among them, as every one of them was filled with the love of God and love for one another. It is difficult for us as sinful creatures to understand what life was like for these Holy beings. Living under the government of God, a government based on complete and total selflessness, that is, every being placing the well-being of every other being above their own, and esteeming all others above themselves. There was no discord or contention, no competition, no pain, no sickness, no sorrow, no selfishness, no sin and no death. Every one of them loved each other as they loved God, every moment a celebration of their existence, as they were created to live forever.
Every one of these angelic beings had a role to play in God’s eternal plans for His creation. The Bible speaks primarily of three orders of angelic beings, each with different functions and abilities. Arc Angels, several of which were commissioned by God to oversee entire nations on planet earth, and to be the messengers of God to men, some of whom interacted with humans at different times in the past.
Cherubim, the order of angels we think of as “guardian angels”, appear to be the helpers of mankind. “Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? ( Hebrews 1:14) And lastly, Seraphim, an order of angelic beings that surround God’s throne giving Him unceasing praise and worship.
Before Creation-Lucifer the “Covering Cherub”
While the Bible makes very few specific references to any of these angels by name, it does speak a great deal about one angel in particular who God exalted above all the rest. His name was Lucifer. Created by God and given the position of “Covering Cherub”, which most Bible scholars agree meant that he held the highest position among all the angels. A magnificent being like no other God had created, Lucifer was endowed with attributes, abilities and wisdom above every other created being. None was closer to God’s throne, or more privy to God’s plans for His creation than was Lucifer. The Bible also tells us that he ranked above all the principalities and powers, (powerful angelic beings that ruled over all of God’s creation.) God said of Lucifer, “Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so.” (Ezekiel 28: 12 & 14)
Lucifer, (translated from the Hebrew word helel, which means ‘brightness’ also translated ‘morning star’, was a special and extraordinary creation to which God gave great authority and responsibility above those of his fellow beings.
Before Creation-God Reveals His Plan
The Bible does not tell us how long these angels existed with God in Heaven before God revealed to them some of the eternal plans He had for all that He had created and was going to create. At some point in time however, God made known to them that He was going to create a new world, and a new order of beings that had never existed before. This new order of created being would be God’s crowning creation, an order of beings that would eventually be exalted to the position of “Kings and Priests” over all of His creation. Their ultimate destiny and the purpose for their creation, would ultimately be to inherit “all things”, and to rule and reign with Him over all the works of His hands forever. They were destined to be the “heirs of all things”. (Revelation 21:7)
The Bible tells us that though created without flaw or imperfection, Lucifer became lifted up (or what we might call today, “ego-maniacal”) because of his own magnificence and his highly exalted position as Covering Cherub. The knowledge that God was going to create a new order of beings that would eventually be exalted to a place above him and the angelic host did not sit well with Lucifer or the angelic powers and principalities that currently held high positions throughout God’s creation. He began to question God’s wisdom and His eternal plans for His creation, and he began to create contention and discord among the angels, by suggesting that as beings who were perfect and Holy in nature, God was dealing with them unjustly. Lucifer dared to suggest that God was partial, inconsistent and dictatorial, depriving His subjects of the right to obtain ‘glory’ for themselves, by commanding that they worship Him alone, and give glory to Him alone. Lucifer knew that in a war of might and power, he and the angels that supported him stood no chance of overthrowing God or His government. But because of his position as Covering Cherub, Lucifer would weild great influence over the heavenly host, and before long he escalated his allegations and contentions into a full-blown rebellion against God. He blindly believed that if the majority of the Heavenly Host could be convinced to rebel against God’s plan to create a new race of beings, that they could change God’s mind and get Him to exalt them to that position instead.
Before Creation-Lucifer’s Plan
Most Bible scholars believe that Lucifer ultimately convinced approximately one-third of God’s angels to side with him in the rebellion. (Revelation 12:4) His main selling point to the Heavenly Host was that all of God’s angels were Holy, just as God was Holy, and that they did not need any other beings exalted above them. Moreover, they began to believe Lucifer’s contention, that because of their Holy natures, there should be no reason for them to give glory to God alone. Why, if they were Holy in nature, should they not receive glory for their individual accomplishments?
Their rebellion was now taking them in a direction from which there could be no return. They wanted freedom from God and His laws, and elected instead to form their own government based on freedom from any laws or restrictions that were inherent in God’s laws.
As Lucifer’s aspirations grew, the Bible says he aspired to “exalt his throne above the stars of God” (Isaiah 14:13), that is, he aspired to overthrow the government of God, and take God’s place as the ruler over all creation. Through the Prophet Isaiah, God makes this statement concerning Lucifer:
“How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God… I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” (Isaiah 14:12-14 NIV)
To accomplish this, Lucifer had to offer his followers a sweeter deal. He would have to convince them that his form of government would set them free from the Lordship of God over them forever. He did this by presenting to them a form of government that would be free of all individual restrictions, allowing them to follow the dictates and desires of their own hearts and minds; a government that would give them the freedom to cater to their own self interests.
But before examining Lucifer’s concept for a new government, lets take a closer look at what God’s government of “selflessness” was all about. Essentially it was (and still is), a government where every being put the needs and well-being of every other being above their own, and thus worked for the good of every other being, and not just for themselves, their own agendas, or their own self-interests. In fact, in a totally “selfless” government, the individual considers the needs of the others around it before their own. And because everyone is preferring each other, there is no lack, no need unfulfilled, and in fact, the well-being of each individual is multiplied well above that of what the individual could ever achieve on their own.
One very obvious example of such an ordered government can be found by simply looking at the cells and organs of the human body. In essence, the human body is a miniature universe unto itself, each with billions and billions of individual cells that together make up one body. Each organ of the human body consists of highly specialized cells whose function is to work for the good of every other cell around it, to nourish it, and supply what ever might be lacking, in order to ensure the continued existence of that organ of which it is a part. That organ in turn, thanks to the selfless contribution of all the cells that make it up, provides to the body, that which it was designed to provide. In this way, the entire body can continue to exist. The operative phrase here is “continue to exist”. But in order for it to work, every cell must carry out the function for which it was created. In fact, every cell of the human body is essentially a miniature factory designed to work for the good of every other cell around it. In the human body, when cells, for whatever reason become corrupt, they stop supplying the needs of the cells around them and instead, in order to enhance themselves, begin to cut off the nutritional supply of the surrounding cells, and ultimately destroy the cells that they have stolen from. The common medical term for these cells is carcinoma or in layman’s terms, cancer. Left unchecked, these rogue cells will ultimately bring about the demise of the entire body, and bring an end to that continued existence they were designed to provide. We know by observing the human body that it will only continue to exist for long as all the cells in the body continue to do what they were created to do. Once they deviate from that path, it ultimately means death for the entire body. All of God’s creation was designed by God to function in much the same way as the human body, no ‘selfishness’ involved. Every being working for the good of every other fellow being, with no thought of fulfilling any personal agenda, but rather abiding by God’s laws that governed and ensured their eternal existence.
Lucifer had succeeded in convincing a third of the Holy Angels, that as eternal creatures they should be free to pursue their own eternal destinies with no God over them to answer to. Lucifer was promising them a better existence. He was promising them that under his form of government they would be their own gods.
Of course when you break it down, the form of government Lucifer was proposing was the only other possible option. Since God’s government was based on “selflessness”, the only other available option would necessarily be something less. Lucifer was in effect, offering them a government based on varying degrees of “selfishness.” A government where they would be free to act as they pleased, do whatever they wanted, when and where they wanted, being lead only by their own “holy” natures. Angels had no knowledge whatsoever about sin, or selfishness, or what the consequences of them could possibly be. None of these simple facts about ‘sin’ were known by the angelic host at the time. Sin had never been seen before anywhere in creation (and before creation), and no created being could have imagined what the far-reaching effects of it would be. Lucifer and those loyal to him could not possibly have known where this rebellion would eventually and inevitably lead them, since death was unknown and no angel had ever lied or even heard a lie prior to Lucifer inventing them.
By the time God had finished creating the earth, the rebellion in Heaven was in full swing. Lucifer was now in a state of desperation. His argument was now shifting to how unjust God was and began making scathing accusations about God’s purposes and God’s laws. When he found that challenging God’s laws didn’t work, he decided to use the law to challenge and test God before all creation. Lucifer contended that if new race of beings were to be the co-creators of a race of beings that would rule over creation, that it would only be fair that their loyalty to God be tested. Lucifer demanded the right to present his side of the story to Adam and Eve.
God did not consider this to be an unjust request. He would allow Lucifer access to Adam and Eve, but only under certain circumstances. God would warn Adam and Eve about His enemy and about the rebellion in Heaven. If Adam or Eve, of their own free will, chose to disobey God and go to the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, there and there alone would Lucifer be allowed to test their loyalty to God by offering them the option of siding with him and his followers.
Copyright © V.P. Valentino, 2012