The Devil Was Never an Angel

So I’ve written on this topic before on here, but I thought it would be helpful to review this again for a greater purpose beyond the actual teaching. As you’ve seen in my previous posts such as “Christians Don’t Go to Heaven When They Die”, “Why Do We Celebrate Easter?” and many others, I’m not shy about challenging traditional beliefs if they seem inconsistent to what Scripture specifically states or doesn’t state. I only care about believing what God wants me to believe according to His Word, and connecting with Him deeper through continually embodying the Word in my thoughts and actions. With that said, let’s see through scripture why the devil was never an angel.

Isaiah 14

The common story that has been taught is that the devil was once an angel who got too prideful and was eventually banished from heaven by God. Most people will point you to Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28 as proof of this teaching, but it’s very important to observe whose being spoken to in these verses. This is going to be a great lesson on reading scripture carefully. In Isaiah 14:4 it states, “that you will take up this taunt against the king of Babylon, and say, “How the oppressor has ceased, And how fury has ceased!” So the verse indicates that the following words between verse 4 through 21 will be a taunt to the king of Babylon. So then it follows that the verse that people point to in verse 12 about the fallen star is not a reference to the devil, but a statement directed to the King of Babylon. To my humble knowledge of scripture, I know of no verse that the devil was ever referred to as the King of Babylon.

Ezekiel 28

In Ezekiel 28:2, it similarly expresses that the following words in the chapter are being directed to the leader of Tyre. Ezekiel 28:2 states, “Son of man, say to the leader of Tyre, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Because your heart is lifted up And you have said, ‘I am a god, I sit in the seat of gods In the heart of the seas’; Yet you are a man and not God, Although you make your heart like the heart of God—“. The statements continue on all the way through verses 11-18, which are not describing the devil as some make the conclusion, but are words being directed to the leader of Tyre. Verse 11 and 12 states, “Again the word of the Lord came to me saying, 12 “Son of man, take up a lamentation over the king of Tyre and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God,“. The devil is never directly mentioned in these verses people reference, and to my humble knowledge of scripture, I know of no verse that ever referenced him as the King of Tyre.

Lucifer

If we go back to Isaiah 14:12 for a moment, in the KJV translation, some have attached the word Lucifer to be referencing the devil. Looking at the Hebrew translation of the word Lucifer, it actually means morning star. Newer translations translate it as such, which was why I stated fallen star when we were discussing Isaiah 14 earlier. There’s no verse I’m aware of that references the devil as a morning star.

From the beginning

To further bring thought on this traditional concept that the devil was once a good angel, let’s consider these following verses. 1 John 3:8 states “the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil” John 8:44 states, “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” Now the first verse we looked at stated the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The second verse stated that he was a murderer from the beginning. Now if he was both a sinner and a murderer from the beginning, it seems to leave no room for this evil being to have ever been good. Based on these verses, it seems difficult not to conclude the devil was always evil.

Assuming the devil was an angel

I have one last scriptural analysis for consideration. What if one were to presume for the sake of argument that it’s true that the devil was in fact once an angel? Let’s consider this verse. 2 Peter 2:4 states, “For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment;” Theoretically, based on this verse, if the devil was ever once an angel who sinned against God, he would be in a pit of darkness eternally bound until the day of judgment. But numerous verses seem to show that the devil is an active force in this world throughout Scripture in times past (Job) and times present (1 Peter 5:8). So it would be difficult to conclude that the devil was ever an angel, because if he was, then he wouldn’t be an active evil force in the world right now. It seems doubtful an angel could do much evil if they were committed to a pit of darkness reserved for Judgment by the all-powerful God we serve.

Conclusion

I hope this helps you to think more about how you read Scripture. I encourage us all to continually make sure we’re understanding scripture the way it’s specifically stated, and not by the lens of whatever tradition we were raised in, or teachings we were previously told. I challenge you to think about everything you’ve ever been taught to believe or practice as a part of your faith, and always put it to the test of Scripture. As long as we’re following His Word, God will be pleased with us.

Peace to all those who are in Christ.

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27 thoughts on “The Devil Was Never an Angel

  1. Revelation 12:7-9
    And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
    And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

    • Hi Patricia. Thank you for your comment. This is a great verse. We see the Devil (who is also called Satan as this verse states) being specifically referred to as ” the great dragon” and “old serpent”. But also, we don’t see the devil directly referred to as an angel, but simply a statement of him having his own angels. It’s great to have verses like this help us understand who the devil is more.

      Peace to you in Christ. 🙂

  2. Might I suggest that “from the beginning” is not the same as “in the beginning”. Our Lord Jesus, the eternal Word, was “in the beginning”. The devil was only evil from the beginning. It is fair to assume that the devil is not eternal, but a creature like humans and angels. Do you agree that the devil is a spirit (as are the angels) and has power, but not all power? Do you think our good God created the devil evil? I Timothy 3:7 warns against falling by pride into the same condemnation as the Devil. This might be a reference to the Devi’s own “fall” by pride. Just a few thoughts. Kind regards, Michael.

    • Hi Michael. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and questions. What you note about “from the beginning” vs “in the beginning” is certainly an important distinction. In my thinking with what I wrote, I was understanding “from the beginning” in the sense of from the beginning of the devil’s existence. As John 1 expresses in the beginning was the Word and God with no mentioning of the devil in those verses, thus seeming to indicate he was created at some point.

      The devil exhibits supernatural power in Job 2:7 when he smote Job with sore boils, so based off of that, one could presume he’s a spiritual being. To your next question, I wouldn’t see it as unusual of our good God creating the devil evil, because God created the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. So I would conclude with this example of God creating something with some evil in it before, God could choose to do the same of the devil as a part of His plan.

      With regards to 1 Timothy 3:6, which I think was the verse you were intending to cite, I can concede that’s a bit intriguing. Interestingly the verse connects being a new convert with potential conceitedness, and then conceitedness is connected with falling into the condemnation of the devil. So how those words new convert and conceitedness, in addition to this being instructions of who should be an overseer, connects to this phrase “condemnation of the devil”, I’m humble enough to admit I don’t know. But in spite of that lack of specific explanation, I would say the verse itself doesn’t conflict with the evidence I’ve presented in this post which still makes me confident in my current conclusion. I would say I don’t think that verse alone is enough to take the extra step of belief in a complete story of the devil once being an angel that got too prideful and was banished from heaven. In my estimation at least, particularly with the verse not going in more explicit detail of that story being the specific reference. Feel free to share more thoughts or questions if you have them. Great comment.

      Peace to you in Christ. 🙂

  3. I really enjoyed reading this post. You have given us a great deal to think about! I was particularly struck by this part…”Now the first verse we looked at stated the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The second verse stated that he was a murderer from the beginning. Now if he was both a sinner and a murderer from the beginning, it seems to leave no room for this evil being to have ever been good. Based on these verses, it seems difficult not to conclude the devil was always evil.” I know that I’ve read this passage many times before but did not see the discrepancy between what Jesus said here and what we have been told about the devil being a fallen angel.

    I do have to say that this does open more questions for me! And that’s a good thing! I’m hopeful that you will have an additional post concerning the origin of the devil, etc.

    • Hi Nickel Boy Graphics. Glad you enjoyed reading the post, and great to know this has helped you to think a little deeper about these things. And there’s certainly room for even broader discussion of who the devil is through many other verses that weren’t discussed in this post. Perhaps I’ll do so in the future.

      Peace to you in Christ. 🙂

  4. Why is the truth hidden? One main reason is so that satan doesn’t know who he is. Satan is a power (Eph 6:12 (KJV)) not a self-aware being. If he were then this question could not be answered:
    “Why didn’t/doesn’t/wouldn’t Satan read the bible the way that the world does and just NOT do what is predicted of him and make God and the bible a liar?”

    Satan was loosed (Rev 20:7 (KJV)) when he became more powerful than the dragon, represented by communist China, a people that believe that man has control of his own destiny and no need of God. Satan was loosed when he became more powerful than the beast, represented by Russia, the nation that sold its birthright (like Esau) to lead the world to God and salvation. Satan was loosed when he became more evil than the false prophet, represented by the Roman Catholic church that does more evil in the name of God than ever before. Satan was loosed in August of 1945 (Rev 13:13 (KJV)).
    Yes satan does NOT know who he is:
    A demon is an evil thought i.e. a lie.
    A devil is a person that carries out that evil i.e. a liar.
    Satan is the POWER that these devils have i.e. the father of lies (John 8:44 (KJV) U.S.A. “in God we trust” and “one nation under God”.
    To believe that this nation (the most powerful nation that has ever been U.S.A.) is not prophesied in the bible, or is just a footnote, is to be naïve or blind.
    Seven times civilization has risen to a major power. Seven times it has been destroyed by God (Rev 20:2-3 (KJV)) and today being the eighth (Rev 17:11 (KJV)).
    Some men would count the users of this phrase, “when I get around to it” as slackers, and so would God. Most teach that these verses mean that God has no concept of time, 8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
    9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness…2 Peter 3:8-9 (KJV).
    They couldn’t be farther from the truth. God did not say “when I get around to it” no, he has a timetable and his elect know this.
    The world needs to quit reading the bible like a novel and seek the truth that is hidden in the stories, fables, and symbolism.
    You can find more of my blogs, comments, and web site on google+.
    My youtube video is a little dry. I am not a movie maker but the video is not for entertainment it is for those that truly seek and want the truth. So please watch it all the way through and read all cited scripture.
    May God have mercy on his children. Amen.

    lonecar144.blogspot.com
    http://satansgreatpowerofdestruction.com

    • Hi lonecar144. You’ve presented a lot of interesting thought here. It’s always good to have vast perspectives added to the discussion. I appreciate you sharing the video and the blog as well. I hope we can all understand and be aware of the devil the way God wants us to for our protection according to what His Word states.

      Peace to you in Christ. 🙂

      • I commented on your post because you gave the impression that you were not one to be intimidated by the status-quo but yet you gave my comment a status-quo reply.

        In order to learn the facts you must ask questions and then use your God given gift of being created in his image (the ability to use reason and logic) to discover the true answers to the questions with the help of the Holy Spirit.

        Questions like;
        “Why didn’t/doesn’t/wouldn’t Satan read the bible the way that the world does and just NOT do what is predicted of him and make God and the bible a liar?”.

        Ten million years from now, after God and his chosen few are living in the lap of luxury, to what purpose are their still souls still burning in the lake of fire?

        What happened to the waters above the firmament?

        Why did the widow blame Elijah for the death of her son after he gave her the miracle of the barrel of meal and cruse of oil?

        Why did the disciples not know that Jesus could feed the 4,000 after he had fed the 5,000 in the previous chapter?

        Why are the colors (without the blue) of the whore that sits on many waters the same as the colors of a nation starting out under God in the book of Exodus.
        38 Speak unto the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribband of blue:
        39 And it shall be unto you for a fringe, that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the Lord, and do them; and that ye seek not after your own heart and your own eyes, after which ye use to go a whoring:
        Num 15:38-39 (KJV)

        In Paul’s letter to Timothy why did he suddenly give a stomach remedy in the middle of writing about the sins of man?

        And there are countless other questions that need to be answered.
        These questions in no way disprove the bible. On the contrary the answers bring the bible(KJV) to the very cusp of “beyond a shadow of a doubt”.

        May God have mercy on his children.

      • My response was generic because I was a bit thrown off by the connections of the US, China, and Roman Catholicism to scripture. I do not mind challenging status quo teaching with bold uncommon ideas as long as there’s explicit statements in scripture to back things up. I’m also skeptical of modern day prophesy, but of course always open minded to how God chooses to operate. And indeed, it’s important to ask questions of things, even we can’t always figure out the answers to these things.

        Peace in Christ. 🙂

  5. What you are doing is correct. There is a lot about religion that takes scriptures and adds myth that is not what is really being said in the text. Adam and Eve never ate an “Apple”, Mary never rode a donkey, Noah’s neighbors never laughed at him and there was no “3 wise men” but only 3 gifts. There is much and more that is taken to mean other things to fill in blanks in understanding and to promote an agenda. It’s like the game of telephone where people share whispers down the line and are embellished by the one who shares the story to push their own understanding and as a result the end result only vaguely resembles the original.

    So perhaps maybe another ideal is at play behind the scenes in scriptures that is left unnoticed because religion teaches not to see it in this way, but consider with a new perspective that the entire book is really about you. You are the world of Creation that was once “Darkness” (Ignorant) seeking enlightenment and that your higher understanding is the god or master of the inner world. Consider the word “WORLD” in the new testament. It is Cosmos (Kosmos) which means the divine order in everything (this is why it is used to mean the Universe in our modern age. It is order out of chaos that is taking the old world (Order) and creating a new world (Order) where Heaven (Ideal “New” self) and Earth (Primitive “Old” self) unite into a “NEW JERUSALEM” which means by translation to mean a “NEW PEACE” or “NEW UNDERSTANDING”.

    7 days are 7 steps of enlightenment in the beginning that are complete in Revelation (Divine Enlightenment) where the WORLD (Order) has eschewed the old WORLD (Order) to create a NEW PEACE. IE order from chaos.

    The entire Bible is being read wrong and as a result religion has blinded us all from the ETERNALTRUTH (LIVING WORD “CHRIST” Ultimate understanding).

    • Hi soulblindminstry. Thank you for your comment. Yes, things like the apple are more good examples of other things that we’ve adapted ideas to the text over time. Seeing these things really stresses the importance of us primarily believing what the text actually states. As far as the other things, you said I’d have to think about that. But that’s an interesting perspective you present that I’ve not heard before. Always a joy see new ideas from new people. I hope you’ll continue to contribute your thoughtfulness to these discussions here.

      Peace to you in Christ. 🙂

  6. Thought provoking post, nice work! I am inclined to still hold that Ezekiel 28 refers to Satan but I’m not so sure about Isaiah 14. You are absolute right that Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28 don’t mention Satan specifically. From my understanding, those who think these passages refer to Satan like myself believe that they are referencing the human rulers but are also referencing the one behind their rule and the one influencing their rule, Satan. The primary reason is because the phrases used to describe these rulers seem to speak of someone who is non-human. I admit that Isaiah 14 is not very strong as a reference to Satan but Ezekiel 28 is in my opinion because of the following phrases:
    “You were the signet of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God…You were an anointed guardian cherub. I placed you; you were on the holy mountain of God..You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created, till unrighteousness was found in you.”
    To me that seems to speak of an angelic being who was created perfect at first. I don’t think that would apply to a human. But I guess the language could be hyperbolic as well. Either way, I like the point of your post in that we should truly go to Scripture alone to form our opinions instead of allowing other preconceived notions affect our reading of Scripture!

    • Hi Carey. Thank you for the compliment. First time hearing of “the one influencing their rule” perspective before. Interesting. I could understand how one could perceive of those verses in Ezekiel referencing something non-human, and then seem to believe it’s portraying the story that’s been taught of the devil. I think where we differ is that where you take the extra step (which you might respectfully not view as an extra step) of saying that’s talking about the devil, I opt in not taking what I respectfully perceive as an extra step just because I don’t see the devil referenced here. Putting it another way, if one were learning about the devil simply through their first time reading through all of scripture, I wonder if one would reach the same conclusion without the prior background teaching? It’s an interesting subject to think about though, and I’m glad we agree on the larger point of this post about sticking to what scripture states with regards to beliefs.

      Peace to you in Christ. 🙂

  7. Thanks for your careful consideration of this topic. I feel ‘the devil’ has become so mythologized that we start thinking that everything originated in the Bible. Its a good reminder to actually read the words and not reply on a cultural idea.

  8. If the truth in the bible (KJV) were explicit it wouldn’t be a mystery.
    If the truth were explicit you wouldn’t have the blind leading the blind.
    If the truth were explicit Jesus would not have been crucified.

    Where does it explicitly say that God has no sense of time and/or is a time traveler?
    Where does it explicitly say that this verse isn’t literal?
    8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
    2 Peter 3:8 (KJV)

    Here are some explicates;
    If the truth were being told this prophecy would have occurred already.
    14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
    Matt 24:14 (KJV)

    4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies,…
    1 Tim 1:4 (KJV)
    3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
    4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
    2 Tim 4:3-4 (KJV)

    Here’s a little lesson on deciphering the bible;
    In Paul’s letter to Timothy why did he suddenly give a stomach remedy in the middle of writing about the sin of man?
    23 Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thine often infirmities.
    1 Tim 5:23 (KJV)
    20 … This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.
    Luke 22:20 (KJV)
    16 For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.
    Heb 9:16 (KJV)
    Wine represents the blood of Jesus which was shed to give us the New Testament.
    The stomach is part of the bowels. Bowels is used to represent emotions in various places in the bible.
    Infirmities are weaknesses.
    So to paraphrase 1 Tim. 5:23 (KJV)
    “study the New Testament for a sound mind and your often temptations to sin.”

    And you must realize that the bible was written for admonition. And that there are many scriptures that were not included in the bible so the ones in the bible are there by Gods direction. When you have discrepancies like the one just discussed it is put there to prod those with eyes to see and ears to hear to investigate. And to look for the underlying truth within.

    May God have mercy on his children.

    P.S.
    These are not “modern day” new prophecies.
    9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.
    10 Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.
    11 There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.
    Eccl 1:9-11 (KJV)
    They are age old prophecies.

    • Hi St. Albert XIV. Thanks for your comment. Well, I’ve concluded the words in this chapter were being directed to the King of Tyre. So it seems it can be concluded the word cherub was directed to the king of Tyre. Now could the king of Tyre been a man and a cherub, I don’t know anything in scripture that suggests that’s ever occurred. Is it possible the language could be figuratively referring to the King of Tyre? I would see that as perhaps more plausible.

      Peace in Christ. 🙂

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