Angels and Demons!
There is recorded in Holy Scripture, in 1Peter 3:18-20, the fact that some “spirits” (i.e. “fallen angels”), are held in “prison” until the future event “of judgement by Christ Jesus”; (see: Eph. 1:22; 3:10-11; 6:12; Col. 2:9-10; 2:15; Rom. 8:38; 1Cor. 15:24; 2Peter 2:11 & Matt. 25:41). Scripture says that they committed their rebellious sin in the time following Eden, at the instigation of Satan; see: Age of the Earth Controversy: and after the pronouncement of Gen. 3:15; which was the prophetic appearing of Jesus the Christ of the “seed of the woman”, Who would “crush his head” (Satan)!
However, it is thought by some, that angels may have fallen much earlier in time; (see: The Genesis 1:1 Enigma). However; that's speculation.
The reference in 1Peter refers to the record in Gen. 6:2-4; 2Peter 2:4 & Jude 6. These show that “sons of God” (i.e. still sons of God in this Creation), angels, “left their first estate” (habitation, or principality); and by their own free will, disobeyed God; to produce with the “daughters of men” creatures of great size and gross behaviour, called “Nephilim", meaning in Hebrew “fallen ones”. (Gen. 6:1-8). See: Nephilim, who were they, and why?
The Bible reference in Gen. 6:2-4, shows that there was an eruption of these rebellious angels both before and after the Flood of Noah! Both eruptions were intended to sully the seed of Adam, so that the prophecy of Gen. 3:15 could not be completed, and Jesus could not be born “of the seed of the woman”! However; through Noah’s seed and family, the Adamic line continued because they were unsullied by Nephilim!
The question arises in the mind, why would those fallen angels be held in “prison” for future judgement by Christ Jesus; whereas it is clear that the servants of Satan are at present free to do the bidding of Satan, and to cause great trouble in humans, especially when they take possession of a person; Luke 8:2 & 36, etc.?
The servants of Satan are called in the KJV of the Bible “devils”; but the correct translation from the Hebrew and Greek is “demons”. So, why are they free at present to work against human kind; and especially Christians? It is clear that they possess people as is evidenced in Mark 1:32, and many references in the New Testament (NT). It is also clear that they were troubled when Jesus was near to them, and that He had superiority over them, even in His flesh state, (Luke 8:26-34). This is highlighted by their plea not to be sent to “the deep” (the abyss=Greek Abussos); which is where Satan and his angels will be for the duration of the Millennial!
To try to understand the difference between the latter group (Satan’s demons) above, and the angels in prison; it is necessary that an understanding and acceptance of Dispensations (Age times, or Administrations, ministries or messages; 1Cor.12:5) of God is needed. For example, the dealings of God with His Created human kind at the beginning of the Bible, is not the same all the way through to Revelation; but, the theme of Salvation in the Christ of God “Jesus” is!
To begin to try to put the various elements into place regarding angels and demons, for understanding, it is necessary to ask why there are “good” and “bad” angels. It is clear that evil and good exists in the world; even devout Atheists concede that point.
Satan’s origin was as a “created” being; and one of high honour. See: Satan's Origins; from this link it is seen that Satan used his free will to rebel against God, and to try to raise himself into the position of God, Isa.14:12-14! His name was then changed from Lucifer (meaning “morning star”, or “bearer of light”) to Satan (Adversary) (see: Why Lucifer became Satan!).
Undoubtedly he had many angels with him in his rebellion (now in chains awaiting Judgement; see Jude), who chose to join him with their own free will! It is those angels (in the opinion of the writers), who's offspring (Nephilim), at death became 'evil spirits', and are referred to in the Gospel accounts and Old Testament (OT), who are now known as demons!
As Satan was not destroyed by God at his rebellion, it follows that his demons also were not likewise destroyed in that previous “Age time”. If this thinking is correct; then they are clearly going to be dealt with by God at a future time (see: Rev Chapter 20; and Eph. 3:10).
They have the Mandate from God to do the bidding of Satan at present, as he is the “prince of the power of the air”, (“the god of this present world”, 2Cor. 4:4); Eph. 2:2; John 12:31; 14:30 and 16:11; their activity is under the command of Satan, who empowers them for their tasks for maximum effect!
This gives the sense to Eph. 6:12; and shows the antidote is only in Eph. 6:13-18; which armour is only in Christ Jesus!
So; Satan’s angels/demons are free to destroy and damage humankind, and to use all means to that end; which when looking at the world scene; all is evil and degraded! They clearly wish their master to win his conflict with Almighty God; which they then would hope would lead to great reward from him. See: Mystery Babylon:
The fallen angels of Genesis, (of this present Creation time) now imprisoned are the ones the Risen Christ proclaimed His glorious victory over death to,1Peter 3:19; (not witnessed to Salvation as many preachers say). These will be judged at the “Great White Throne Judgement” of Rev. 20, together with Satan and his human servants and spirits of the previous time/times; of Satan’s dominance and rebellion!
It is clear that a state of war exists between Almighty God and Satan; see: Satan's Contest with God, instigated by Satan when his pride in his position of “covering cherub”; and in his free will, he challenged God’s position (Isa.14:13-14) to try to supplant Him; and that has been/is his endeavour since!
The fact that God is allowing this contest to continue is in itself surprising to the human mind; but, in the context of Gen. 3:15; properly understood; is remarkable in the extreme in its Wisdom and depth, as is sketched in the example of Job, Chapters 1 and 2 etc.! See: Ultimate Love.
So; there are two opposing forces at play at the present time:
1) God and His righteous angels including the archangel Michael, of special commission for Israel; (minus those fallen ones in prison), and His Risen Christ Jesus sitting at His right hand, awaiting His enemies demise, and His return to Earth; when they become “His Footstool”; (see Isa. 66:1, Psm. 110:1 & Luke 20:42-43).
2) Satan and his spirits and human servants on Earth (of whom there are many) and in all allowed domains; with the mandate to try to thwart the message of Salvation in Christ Jesus, through faith alone! The demons are allowed to possess and control people who are not committed to Christ; and to if possible affect the actions and decisions of Christians in the wrong direction; but they cannot undo the Saving Blood of Christ in the life of a true Christ-One, because it is sealed/locked in Heaven! (See: Salvation; can it be lost?).
As “the god of this world [Age]” (Eph. 2:2 & 2Cor. 4:4), Satan is at present organising and orchestrating much evil action in rulers and Nations on Earth as is evident in the news daily; leading to his final assault on Israel; in an attempt to undo what God has said is fixed in prophecy; the fact that Israel will never be destroyed from the Earth (Jer. 31:36-37)!
The angels of God in Gen. 6 committed the sins of lust and rebellion, when they by their own free will chose to mate with the human women they liked; and in so doing by the design of Satan put at jeopardy the seed of the woman of Gen. 3:15.
Satan’s angels committed the sins of avarice and rebellion by their own free will, when they thought they would be richer and more powerful with Satan!
Satan committed the sins of pride, avarice and rebellion (at least) and became “the father of lies” (see: Father of Lies John 8:44), when by his own free will he challenged his loving Creator; and now wishes to supplant Him!
Almighty God; who loves the world; (John 3:16) has only one chosen solution for all this malefaction; “LOVE”; which He is showing in Jesus the Christ; and which leaves in place that most precious gift He has given; the free will of every person on Earth, and which He gave also to angels, and to Satan! That is where the problem started!
The following is a description of that “Love”; which does not do due justice or reverence to its depth!
Extracts from previous work on Revelation Chapter 12
V.12 "Therefore (a)rejoice ye Heavens, and ye that dwell in them. (b)Woe to the ones dwelling on the Earth, and in the sea, because the devil is come down to you having (c)great anger, knowing he has only a little time".
(a) The inhabitants of Heaven, exhorted to rejoice. Clearly Satan had for many Ages caused great trouble, strife, conflict and much turmoil, beyond our ability to understand, whilst allowed to retain a "place", in Heaven. It is also clear that his success persuaded a third of all angels to follow him, (Rev. 12:4). His presence is a constant source of pernicious, on-going divisive action in Heaven. Even though Heaven's creation know who their Creator is, Satan still has much success in converting angelic creation to his side. One of the many major differences between mankind and angels, is humans will deny the existence of God Almighty, and also Satan. It is implicit that one element is common to both Earthly and Heavenly creation, free will! It is therefore easy to understand that Heavenly creation rejoices at the expulsion of such an Adversary, after so long in their midst, and also in the knowledge that Satan's efforts will be short on Earth. The question often asked by many over the years, is how could Almighty God allow Satan to exist after such rebellion, and even to be in His presence, to have place in Heaven; and patrol Earth (Job 1 and 2). The answer undoubtedly lies in The Perfect Plan of Redemption, that only God could conceive, wherein the Perfect Love of God would allow Satan to perform to his vile worst in Heaven as well as Earth after the overthrow of Genesis, all of which is observed by Heavenly creation (Eph. 3:10). Some argue that such a protracted process is wasteful, painful, and suffers great loss of life and environment. That is to miss the main point. It is of course easily possible for Almighty God to eliminate Satan. To do so however prematurely would not allow creation to see the depth of sin that Satan will eventually stoop to. Conversely, the Almighty will be seen by all creation to take the burden and result on Himself, in the form of Christ Jesus (Col. 1:20). It is thereafter the response to Christ's death and suffering (in the place of all humankind), which is the key to individuals eternal destiny, on Earth and also in Heaven, in this Age, and eternity!
The main thrust for Satan's pernicious attention had been Heaven's occupants and the tribes of Israel. Abraham was chosen by God! He was called "the friend of God", (2Chr. 20:7, Isa. 41:8 & Jms. 2:23), because his heart was against the idolatry of his father, and the Nation Ur, which derived from Babylon! After Paul's declaration (Acts 28:25-28), all the world's Nations became the subject of Satan’s attention; which showed in the Wisdom of Jehovah Zebaoth, that the failure of Satan at The Cross and the failure of Israel to accept Christ (Acts 28:26), increased the eventual harvest for Christ / Jehovah. Most people on Earth are fixated with their flesh life, which is natural enough. However, God has ordained that they are not content, and can only find rest, peace and understanding in Him, albeit in simple sincere trust, which most people find hard to give unless they encounter Christ, personally. Because all the efforts of Satan are eventually self-defeating, and will be seen as such by Heavenly and Earthly creation, the Almighty in Christ will vanquish Satan, but not until Heaven and Earth have been reminded that Satan stands for deceit, destruction, suffering, and death, as opposed to the Love, Peace, Justice and Righteousness of Jehovah/Christ. After that reminder, Satan and his followers will be consigned to doom (Rev. 20:10). All that remains for individuals at the present time (i.e. this Age) is to trust in God's work, in Christ Jesus. The timing of the above is in the hands of the Father only (Matt. 24:36), and His timing is perfect (Matt. 5:48). The perfect timing of God the Father means that Satan is defeated by perfect Love (a concept totally alien to mankind); which means that Satan is defeated by Love, which is God (1John 4:8-16)! Had Satan been destroyed at the time of his rebellion, none of the above could have come into play, and such action by the Almighty would have been seen by creation as dictatorial, and His plan of Love could not unfold to fruition. As the plan now unfolds, God will indeed be seen as Ultimate Love.
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