“I saw Satan fall like lightening from heaven.” -Jesus, (Luke 10:18)
The simple choice, motivated by love, to allow other wills to exist, has lead to some disastrous consequences within God’s creation. I trust the intelligence of Architect of the universe, Who designed all the laws of nature to work in perfect symphony, and the selfless love of the Saviour. Anyone smart enough to create a world from nothing, and loving enough to do what Jesus did for us can be trusted for having completely correct motives for what they have done.
This isn’t a defense for God’s goodness, as that is the basic belief of this worldview. God is good because God is God, and well, we’re back in the Eternity Past chapter….
Something terrible happened. From a perfect creation, where everything was good, evil had begun. It began in the mind of the most powerful and intelligent spirit being God created. This being worshiped God, and led the other angelic hosts to do the same. Lucifer, the light-bearer, had much a much greater understanding of the nature of God and His Creation than any of God’s creatures, and yet somehow thought he could create his own kingdom and defeat God. He became the originator and source of all evil.
The light-bearer became the adversary-Satan (the Hebrew word for adversary). Unable to defeat God directly, he was thrown out of his place in Heaven with the other angels that had defected to him. They set up camp on earth to defend against God’s purposes for humanity, ordering themselves into structured kingdom, organised to wreck havoc on God’s most prized possession.
Satan saw that he could work his deceptive magic on the human race and cause untold grief to God and to us for centuries and centuries. How would it work? He would use something he invented-the lie. Before Satan, there was only truth, but his new idea was to distort truth, to use language and inference in such a way as to lead humanity into the pure evil his heart was being filled with. His rage against God; his disappointment about not being strong enough to defeat Him; his fear of God’s coming judgment; his malice and pride and every wicked thought on how to pervert and distort the marvelous, beautiful, healthy and joyful masterpiece of God. All these he would reproduce in humanity. He would have his vision lived out through humanity. He would take the place of God in the human heart. He knew he could do it, and perhaps he hoped that God’s kindness to His dearest creation would stop him from being punished.
“God is too loving,” he may have schemed, “He won’t send them to the place he has promised I’m going. But if He judges me, then He has to judge them. Aha! I will deceive them all. Then God will never judge me, because it will pain Him too much to see them suffer. And yet I will cause suffering anyway, and God will be miserable whichever was he chooses. I don’t know why He has such an obsession with them, couldn’t He see that I could do this? God is sick. He doesn’t know what He’s doing. I’m so much wiser. I hate God, I’m going to turn His perfect world into hell, and there is nothing He can do to stop me. I will be the god of the humans, and God will be forgotten….”
The thing with Satan is that he is almost always right. Almost. He knows so much, but he does not know everything. There are the fringes, the mysteries, the inexplicables that even Satan can’t quite define. The unsettling strangeness of the universe; the reality of paradoxes; the mystery of existence. And above all that, there is something he never calculated about Man. Man was never just a creation. God breathed into Man, and gave something of Himself away in doing so. Something of that wiley, unpredictable, uncontrollable essence of Himself got transferred to Adam, and so to his children. Something of the mystery of God lives in the human race, so that Man would overcome Satan. Not without God’s help, but it would be done. Not in every life, for most would suppress the essence of God for temporary pleasures and pursuits, choosing to live more like animals than gods, or choosing to follow Satan’s ways and be ‘gods’ over their fellow humans. They would become so blind to reality, that they would forget God. But there would be those that would that despite all Satan would set up against them, turn to God, and know and see they truth. They would respond to the Father’s calling and drawing. These would become the Bride. These are who the family would be comprised of. These are the “sons and daughters of living God,” for whom God did all that He did. Satan would try to defeat them, but he would fail. They would win the war, and be the forever blessed. Those who chose to remain rebels would not fare so comfortably