How did an angel turn bad?

Christians believe in God and angels that worship and serve him.  

We also believe that the devil and demons are real.

We believe that the Bible tells us the truth about these invisible spiritual beings and that we can trust 100% what God says about them.


How did an angel turn bad?

 

This week's question is about the devil or Satan.  He's not like the cartoon devils we might have seen.  The Bible says he is real though.  He is an evil spiritual being (a fallen angel) who rebelled against God and leads other demons with him against God, angels and people to try and destroy them and keep them from God.  He's no match for God, we don't need to be scared of him.  And he will be destroyed once and for all by God just at the right time.

 

He started out life as a perfectly good angel when God created everything in the beginning.  

We know this partly because the Bible tells us God is the creator of absolutely everything...

John 1:3

Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

 

So this means God must have created Satan (maybe not by that name, but the good angel he once was).  Satan went against God and many angels did the same and went along with him...

In Luke 18:10 Jesus said he saw Satan fall...

And he said to them, "I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven."

 

It seems angels have freedom (like us) to obey or disobey God, and many angels (also like us) chose to rebel against God.  Satan wasn't good for very long after he was created.  It seems he rebelled quickly because the Bible says he's been 'sinning from the beginning'...

1 John 3:8

The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.

 

Satan first turns up in the Bible's story right at the beginning in Genesis chapter 3 as the sneaky snake who tricks Eve into disobeying God and Adam with her...

Genesis 3:1

Now the snake was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say, “You must not eat from any tree in the garden”?’

 

And throughout the rest of the Bible, 'the devil' or 'Satan' is constantly seen as one who in an enemy of God and his people; trying to tempt, distract and ultimately destroy...

In John 10:10 Jesus said about him...

"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly."

 

Jesus (when he was having a right old go at some evil religious leaders) said they were children of the devil and that the devil since the beginning has been a MURDERER and a LIAR...

John 8:44

You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 

 

He tried (and failed) to get Jesus to sin when he was in the wilderness fasting and praying...

Matthew 4:5-7

Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the highest point of the temple. ‘If you are the Son of God,’ he said, ‘throw yourself down. For it is written:

‘“He will command his angels concerning you,
    and they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”’

Jesus answered him, ‘It is also written: “Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”

 

If you're not trusting and following Jesus, putting God first in your life, then it might not seem like any of this is real.  ONE reason for this might be that you're right where the devil wants you: NOT following Jesus!  NOT in a relationship with God.  NOT forgiven by him.  And the devil wants to keep it that way.  If you're not fussed about God, the devil's probably not that fussed about you either.  He wants you to carry on as you are because he knows what you're settling for and how it will end.



 

But for those of us who ARE trusting and following Jesus, putting God first in our lives (not living perfectly but forgiven and aiming to trust and obey God in everything because he loves us, rescued us and lives in us), then all this is a DAILY REALITY in our lives.  Sometimes we're more conscious of it than at other times but the Bible tells us as Christians that we are in an unseen but very real SPIRITUAL BATTLE...

Ephesians 6:12

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

 

Satan is pictured as like a roaring lion looking for people to pounce on and attack...

1 Peter 3:8

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.

 

And the Bible also tells followers of Jesus how we can suit up and arm up for the battle we face in this world, mixed up and messed up with evil as it is...

Ephesians 6:10-17

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armour of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armour of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled round your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

 

Right at the end of the Bible, in John's wild vision we also find out how Satan will one day be destroyed.  We know he won't change and we know he won't win.  God has already written that part of the story...

Revelation 20:7-10

When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth – Gog and Magog – and to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore. They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10 And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulphur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

 

In fact, Satan's downfall was certain 2000 years ago at the cross when Jesus died in our place for our sin so that we could each turn from our sins, trust in Jesus and have a restored relationship with God now and forever...

Colossians 2:13-15

When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having cancelled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.


IN FACT, Satan's downfall and God's ultimate victory was secure WAY before 2000 years ago because we know that God knows the end from the beginning!

Isaiah 46:10

I make known the end from the beginning,
    from ancient times, what is still to come.
I say, “My purpose will stand,
    and I will do all that I please.”

 

God's not scared.

 

If you're trusting and following Jesus, you're probably not scared either.  There's only 2 "teams" and you're on the right one!  You get to WIN!  And it's the biggest win ever!

 

But if you're NOT trusting and following Jesus, I pray and hope that you will decide to stop being 'god' of your own life and ask Jesus for mercy, forgiveness, kindness, grace and start trusting and obeying him.  He loves you!  He has a plan!  He will win!  And he wants you to be with him; not without him! 

 

BACK to 'What we're learning'