HAVE any others than the human family sinned?
"God spared not the angels that sinned." 2 Peter 2:4.
What is the name of the one who led the angels to sin?
"Depart from Me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels." Matthew 25:41.
NoTE.—He is known by other names: "the great dragon," "that old ser- pent," "Satan," "Lucifer." (Revelation 12 :9 ; Isaiah 14:12.)
What was Satan's condition when created?
"Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee." Ezekiel 28:15.
NOTE.—The prophet Ezekiel describes him thus: "Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, . . . the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. Thou are the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire." Ezekiel 28:12-14. Thus it is evident that Satan was a high and exalted angel before he fell, a masterpiece of wisdom and beauty. The reference to his "tabrets" and "pipes" probably means that he led the angelic host in song. In the earthly sanctuary the covering cherubim overshadowed the mercy seat. (Exodus 25:16-22; Hebrews 9:3-5; Psalm 99:1.)
CAUSE OF SATAN'S FALL
What unholy, ambitious spirit led to Satan's fall?
"Thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High." Isaiah 14 :13, 14. "Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness." Ezekiel 28:17.
What does Solomon say precedes destruction and a fall?
"Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall." Proverbs 16:18.
How does the prophet Isaiah describe Satan's fall?
"How art thou fallen from heaven, 0 Lucifer, son of the morn- ing! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!" Isaiah 14:12. Why was Satan cast from his high position? "Thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, 0 covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire." Ezekiel 28:16.
SATAN CAST OUT
How is the conflict in heaven described?
"And there was war in heaven: Michael [Christ] 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 deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him." Revelation 12:7-9.
In what terms did Christ refer to Satan's fall?
"I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven." Luke 10:18. Where were Satan and his angels banished till the judgment? "God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment." 2 Peter 2:4.
NOTE.—This, we understand, is the darkness surrounding this world, and is symbolic of the darkness of despair, rebellion, and sin. When Satan led man to sin, darkness was brought upon this world. But God did not leave man to hopelessness. In His mercy and great love He caused the light of the gospel to shine, to call men "out of darkness into His marvelous light." That Satan and the angels who fell with him had had opportunity to repent, there can be no doubt. Their fate is the result of stubborn rebellion, and persistence in sin in spite of the overtures of mercy and the offers of pardon. For this they were cast out of heaven. The wicked angels are kept in everlasting chains of dark- ness.
SATAN SINCE THE FALL
Has Satan ever appeared before God since his fall?
"Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them." Job 1:6. (See also chapter 2:1.)
When asked whence he came, what was Satan's reply?
"From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it." Job 1:7. (See Job 2:2.)
NOTE.—By tempting man to sin, Satan usurped man's dominion over the earth. (Romans 6:16; 2 Peter 2:19.) This he now claims as his kingdom (Luke 4:6); hence the temptation in offering the kingdoms of this world to Christ. As the "god" and ruler of this world, Satan, for four thousand years before the crucifixion of Christ, appeared before God among the representatives of other worlds, as the representative of this world. After accomplishing the death of Christ, the Son of God, the sinless One, Satan was cast out of this council, or assembly, and has not been permitted to enter it since. This was his second fall, and the one, doubtless, to which Christ, just before His cruci- fixion, alluded when he said, "Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out." John 12:31. His final fall and destruction are still future.
What has been the character of Satan since his fall?
"The devil sinneth from the beginning." 1 John 3:8.
Was he ever in the truth?
"He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him." John 8:44.
NOTE.—This implies that Satan, once in the truth, did not remain there. What is the only "beginning" of which we have record? "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." Genesis 1:1. What besides a murderer did Christ say Satan is? "He is a liar, and the father of it." John 8:44.
What did God tell Adam and Eve would be the result if they transgressed by partaking of the forbidden fruit?
"Thou shalt surely die." Genesis 2:17.
What did Satan say to Eve through the serpent?
"Ye shall NOT surely die." Genesis 3:4.
NOTE.—This, .as far as the record shows, was the first lie—a direct denial of the word of God. By persuading Eve to accept and believe it, Satan led our first parents to commit sin; and, as "the wages of sin is death," by it, also, he caused their death, and so became, in reality, the first murderer. A lie, there- fore, is a twin brother to murder, and one of the most hateful things to God, the "God of truth." (See Proverbs 6:16-19; Proverbs 12:19.) "All liars shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone." Revelation 21:8. (See also Revelation 21:27; 22:15.)
What has been the result of sin's entrance into the world?
"By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin"; "by one man's disobedience many were made sinners." Romans5:12, 19. "The whole world lieth in wickedness." 1 John 5:19. "In Adam all die." 1 Corinthians 15:22.
When Christ came to redeem man, what did Satan do?
"He was there in the wilderness forty days, tempted of Satan." Mark 1:13. (See also Matthew 4:1-11.)
How severely was Christ tempted of Satan?
"[He was] touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin." Hebrews 4:15. What has the church suffered since the days of Christ? "And when the dragon [Satan] saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman [the church]." Revelation 12:13.
NOTE.—Untold millions of the people of God have been put to death under pagan and papal persecutions, all of which have been instigated by Satan. (See readings on pages 221, 260, 265, 484.) Is the remnant church to feel his wrath, and why? "And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ." Verse 17.
How will Satan cause deception in the last days?
"And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast." Revelation 13:14.
Note.—This, we understand, refers to Spiritualistic manifestations and miracles to be wrought to fasten men in error and deception. (See readings on pages 520, 523.)
What will influence the nations to gather for the great battle of Armageddon?
"They are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty." Revelation 16:14.
SATAN'S MILLENNIUM AND DOOM
For how long is Satan to be bound at the Second Advent?
"An angel . . . laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years." Revelation 20:1, 2.
What is to take place at the close of the thousand years?
"And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, and shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle." Verses 7, 8.
NOTE.—Satan's evil career began in rebellion against God in heaven, and ends in rebellion against Him on earth. What is the final fate of Satan and his host? "They . . . compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them." Verse 9.
What is to be Satan's final doom?
"1 will bring thee to ashes upon the earth. . . . And never shalt thou be any more." Ezekiel 28:18, 19.
NOTE.—A gladsome thought, that when Satan, sin, and sinners are no more, then God will have a clean universe.
PERSONAL DEFEAT OR VICTORY
How are Christians warned against Satan's hatred?
"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist stedfast in the faith." 1 Peter 5:8, 9. "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." James 4:7.
Why will men be allowed thus to fall under the delusion of Satan?
"Because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." 2 Thes- salonians 2:10-12. (See 1 Kings 22:20-23.)
Why did Christ partake of our nature?
"Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil." Hebrews 2:14.
What was Christ's weapon against Satan?
The word of God. "It is written." (See Matthew 4:4-10.)
NOTE.—The word of God is the "sword of the Spirit." (Ephesians 6:17.) If Christ met and vanquished the enemy with this, so also may we.