A Question I Was Asked:

What is the Origin of Satan and his Demons?

Could you please help me understand the origin of Satan and his army of demons. If everything God had created during creation week was very good at the end of Day 6, then Satan could not have existed as he is most certainly not 'very good'! Since I no longer believe there was a worldwide flood during a fictitious battle between God and Lucifer/Satan before Genesis 1:1-2, when did Lucifer become Satan?

UK Apologetics Reply:

I think I will respond to this by making five points:

1. First of all, it was the physical creation of the earth and universe which God declared 'very good' after that 6-day period; He was not necessarily referring to all the potentiality of his human creation getting themselves into trouble at a later stage. Just consider this: if such were true, that would make God incredibly naive! No, this was plainly only a reference to the creation itself.

2. Secondly, there is no biblical teaching of any great flood prior to what we generally refer to as Noah's Flood (Genesis 6). The trouble is that some people have tried to add all kinds of things to the plain Bible teaching some of which are just not there.

3. The serpent (Satan) was plainly soon around to start tempting Adam and Eve, therefore Satan - as an evil being - did apparently precede the events in the Garden. Some say that we don't know how long it was before Satan approached the first human couple in the Garden, however, it would seem to me rather plain that Satan got to Eve quite soon. The Old Testament, after all, has no problem in describing time periods and time lengths. Days, for example, are clearly defined as days as we know them (Genesis 1:13, and so on). Much later we are given the geneaologies of many Old Testament figures so we can calculate at the least approximate periods of times when they lived even if not always with the highest accuracy. NOW NOTE THIS: The angels are not included in the 6-day creation account, moreover, they sang for joy when it occurred (Job 38:4-7), therefore they were already around; the creation account only concerns things pertaining to our earth. No, in the first three chapters of Genesis a picture is clearly painted of Satan getting to Eve rather soon and, I would say, very soon. Adam and Eve were warned about the 'tree of good and evil' because Satan was already active.

4. When we look at the question of Lucifer and Satan, or just when Lucifer became Satan, things unquestionably get a little more difficult. This is because God - in His infinite wisdom - has chosen not to give us a time-related revelation of this period and perhaps that would be impossible to do. However, Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28 do give us possible clues. Isaiah 14 refers to a king of Babylon but suddenly - verses 12-15 - Lucifer is apparently being described and some of this could not refer to a man. In similar manner, Ezekiel 28 starts off by referring to a 'ruler of Tyre,' but then - again, quite suddenly - verses 12b through 18 cannot describe any man. The suggestion seems powerful that this refers to the one who later became Satan and a large part of Christianity has accepted this interpretation. From these verses it seems that the archangel Lucifer became filled with vanity and even planned to take God's very throne by force. Possibly as many as a third of the angels joined in the rebellion (Revelation 12:3-4), at which point they became demons, being - thereafter - more or less confined to this earth and it's atmosphere, especially following the victory of Christ on the cross (Luke 10:17-18).

5. My fifth point is this: from Genesis 1 we receive a divine revelation as pertaining to the human race. But - for the present - God has chosen not to tell us everything about what occurred before men and women arrived on the scene and - quite possibly - a time order would be pretty meaningless since God and the angelic realm are not subject to the constraints of time, since they exist beyond it. So yes, this was prior to Genesis 1 (as we humans would view it). None of this, of course, is to support the 'gap theory' which is to erroneously insert many events, even including the fall of Lucifer, 'millions of years,' and even evolution (in some versions of it) between two verses in Genesis 1 (verses 2 and 3). It was always a rather silly idea, amounting to the flawed practice of eisegesis rather than exegesis (that is: putting things into Scripture which are not there, rather than drawing truths out of Scripture which certainly are there). More on the errors of the 'gap theory' here. It is also just as much eisegesis to suggest that Lucifer fell during the days of creation.

Robin A. Brace. April 21st, 2014.