“From angel of light to prince of darkness”
“How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” Isaiah 14: 12
Lucifer is the original name given to the being that we now refer to as Satan or the Devil. Lucifer means son of the morning or angel of light. When I say above, that we refer to Lucifer as Satan or the devil this is not quite correct in that both names as well as his former name was given by God.
What happened to precipitate the fall and change of name? The answer can be found in the rest of the passage and with supporting messages elsewhere in the Bible.
It all begins, (this should not be a surprise) in the heart. “For 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. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit”. Notice the many I’s, and remember they were not openly said but were in the heart.
The text shows the corrosive nature of pride. Lucifer was created as the son of the morning and had access to the presence of God. He enjoyed reflective glory a privilege not many had but sadly this was not enough, he envied God. We are all uniquely created and all have our purpose and potential. God has created us to grow and increase, to be better than when we began and to therefore leave the world better than when we were born. It should be said by others he or she made a contribution to the betterment of our world. Our achievements or successes, however does not mean we need be number one. Resentment and jealousy can be all consuming to the point that we waste creative energy in trying to be number one.
The number ONE is the most important number of all for all other number comes after it.
God is NUMBER ONE. We might be the first in a race, the first office holder, for example Chairman of an organisation or even the first monarch but we should never see ourselves as number one. This is not semantics or playing with words but instead I am arguing that striving for number one is the root cause for the demise of Lucifer. It is the root cause of so much of our problems today.
Usain Bolt of Jamaica is the fastest man on earth today over 100 and 200 metres and he currently holds the best ever time over 100 metres at 9.58 seconds. In July 1912 the world record was 10.6 seconds set by Donald Lippincott of the USA. Who then is number one, the answer is evidently based on the relevant year.
Lucifer would be ejected from heaven and in time become the prince of darkness, even though he sometimes still appears as an angel of light when trying to deceive.
Darkness conceals and hides; sinful man prefers the dark more than light because his deeds are more likely to be seen. In the modern world Satan has convinced many that he does not exist even when evil is obviously at work. The heart is impossible to know except by God and unless He shows us. This ability is reserved for God only. No angel or man can truly know the content of another’s heart. Because of this it is imperative that we judge ourselves and apply the scalpel often to ensure no bitterness or evil is found.
Apostle John describes the three ways we commit sin: lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life. The worst by far is the pride of life, yet sadly and dangerously, pride in modern society is now seen as a virtue and not a vice. We say how proud we are, how we are filled with pride for doing well or winning. We seem to forget the trainer, the coach, parents, mentor, the pastor et al. and of course, God. Instead it’s all about what I have done, how good I am, my training regime, my intelligence and on and on we go. Success, achievement and victory should cause us to be humble and appreciative of the applause, congratulation and trophies of men.
Lucifer was not content with the reflective glory emanating from God he wanted to be number one. Let us serve one another as brothers and sisters, giving credit, respect and honour to whom they are due not striving to be number one but being contented to be the very best we can be, thereby fulfilling our potential.
Let it never be said that we failed to accomplish all we could because we spent our time trying to be number one.
The Lord’s servant
Apostle Lloyd Denny