You were the seal of perfection,
full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.
You were in Eden,
the garden of God;
every precious stone adorned you:
carnelian, chrysolite and emerald,
topaz, onyx and jasper,
lapis lazuli, turquoise and beryl.
Your settings and mountings were made of gold;
on the day you were created they were prepared.
You were anointed as a guardian cherub,
for so I ordained you.
You were on the holy mount of God;
you walked among the fiery stones.
You were blameless in your ways
from the day you were created
till wickedness was found in you.
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 sit enthroned on the mount of assembly,
on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon.
I will ascend above the tops of the clouds;
I will make myself like the Most High.”
But you are brought down to the realm of the dead,
to the depths of the pit.
Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads. Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth.
I don’t doubt many of you have just said “wait, what?” Morning star? son of the dawn? red dragon with seven heads?? Is this a J. R. R. Tolkien story or something else really weird out of a Sci Fi movie?
Sadly, this is not just a fictional story but Biblical accounts of an event that took place sometime between the creation in Genesis 1 and Adam and Eve eating that piece of fruit. As we’ve been learning over the past few days, angels are created beings. Although created perfect, one of those angels developed a fatal flaw – pride. This angel was once called Lucifer, which means light-bearer or morning star, but now has come to be known as satan or the devil. Did you catch that? The devil was once an angel, a guardian cherub according to Ezekiel. However as we read in Isaiah, for reasons not revealed, satan decided he wanted to exert his will above God’s. This sin resulted in him being thrown out of his elevated place in heaven.
Well ok, fine, but what is the deal with the whole dragon thing? In simple terms the dragon is just a symbolic image of the devil and the account from Revelation informs us that satan somehow convinced a third of the angels to join him in disobeying God. They too were swept out of heaven with him.
So why does it matter for us to know about this? It is important to be aware that since satan and his followers (called demons) were originally angels, it means they are created beings subject to the power and authority of God. The devil is not equal in any way to God. Not in strength, not in knowledge, not in anything. God alone is all powerful, all knowing and present in all places at all times. Although satan and his demons attempted to exert their own wills, they failed and are facing a judgment one day for their sins.
And the angels who did not keep their positions of authority but abandoned their proper dwelling—these he has kept in darkness, bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day. (Jude 1:6)
For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them in chains of darkness to be held for judgment (2 Peter 2:4)
We should be aware of satan’s power which is greater than our own – but because of our intimacy with Christ we never need to fear him.
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. (1 John 4:4)