We have established that Lucifer rebelled against God. He rebelled against God’s government, or to be more precise, against the law with which God ruled His universe—the moral law of agape love—unconditional, impartial, selfless love.

Lucifer began harbouring criticism towards the government of God— again, there was no reason for this, but it happened—and in that process, he became convinced that he had the solution to a problem he saw in God’s administration. This is how his rebellion began.

Lucifer took the position that as a result of the law of God, wrong existed in heaven and on this earth. This brought against God’s government the charge of being arbitrary. But this is a falsehood, framed by the author of all falsehoods. God’s government is a government of free-will, and there is no act of rebellion or obedience which is not an act of free-will {ST June 5, 1901, par. 4, emphasis added}.

Lucifer was claiming that there was a problem with God’s government, and that problem was God’s law of agape love. The “wrong” he perceived “existed in heaven and on this earth” was God’s law of agape love. And because God would not alter His law of liberty to conform to Lucifer’s new ideas, Lucifer charged Him as be- ing arbitrary. God’s law protected everyone’s freewill and Lucifer thought this was a problem. He wanted to change that, he wanted to bring in a forced obedience, and as God would not go along with his plans, he charged God as being arbitrary, when in fact he was proposing the enforcement of an arbitrary system of law.

Lucifer was enshrouded with glory as the covering cherub. Yet this angel whom God had created, and entrusted with power, became desirous of being as God. He gained the sympathy of some of his associates by suggesting thoughts of criticism regarding the government of God. This evil seed was scattered in a most seducing manner; and after it had sprung up and taken root in the minds of many, he gathered the ideas that he himself had first implanted in the minds of others, and brought them before the highest order of angels as the thoughts of other minds against the government of God. Thus, by ingenious methods of his own devising, Lucifer introduced rebellion in heaven {4BC 1143.1, emphasis added}.

“Thoughts of criticism.” This in itself is a problem. Why? “Thoughts of criticism” began in the mind of the Devil. His was the first mind to engage in such thoughts. He saw something wrong where there was only perfection. There was no flaw in heaven—but he saw it. The Pharisees did the same thing when they criticized the disciples for picking ears of corn on the Sabbath day. Jesus’ response was:

But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless (Matthew 12:7).

The Pharisees saw a flaw where there was none. Likewise, Lucifer’s “thoughts of criticism” were directed towards something that gave no cause for criticism—he “condemned the guiltless.” But even more, his “thoughts of criticism” reveal that his mind had already deviated from the law of God because criticism is something foreign to God’s language. Notice what Paul says in his letter to Titus:

To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled. They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work (Titus 1:15-16).

God is pure, holy, clean, and to Him “all things are pure.” This may be hard for us to understand because we see evil everywhere and in everyone— but God sees only value in us, even in those cases we consider to be the most hopeless. Jesus saw beauty in everyone and He treated them accordingly, without condemnation. It was this ability to see people without condemnation that drew them to Him. It was also this lack of condemnation that changed their hearts and behaviour to reflect the potential He saw in them.

Criticism in itself is a symptom that whatever was coming out of Lucifer now was suspect and distorted. His mind was no longer pure. He had become an unbeliever—the first unbeliever—and his mind became defiled. He no longer knew God as He truly was and he became “abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work.” He originated the sin—not seeing and portraying God as He truly is.

There was a precise moment when Lucifer first sinned; “the place where sin entered can be specified” {4BC 1163.6}. This means we can pinpoint the specific “place” in time that this happened, and the circumstances surrounding it.

This “place” is described in the Book of Ezekiel. This is the pivotal moment in which Lucifer changed from being Lucifer to being the Devil—the moment he turned from God’s agape love. He then became something that was the very opposite of God. So let’s zoom in and see what the prophet says:

You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: the sardius, topaz, and diamond, beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold. The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created. You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; you were on the holy mountain of God; you walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones. You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you. By the abundance of your trading you became filled with violence within, and you sinned (Ezekiel 28:13-16, emphasis added).

These verses reveal much. They disclose Lucifer’s relationship to God prior to re- belling, and his occupation and role in God’s universe. They show his pre-fall moral condition, and explain what happened to his character afterwards. We can also learn much about God here. These words must be “mined,” and as we do, we will find a rich, hidden treasure—especially if we examine the original Hebrew words.


Lucifer was in the Garden of Eden. The Garden, therefore, must have vital, pivotal information for us. Eden pulls together the threads of Lucifer’s rebellion—it exposes what he did. Even though his initial uprising began in heaven, it is in the Garden that we find “iniquity” explained. Where was he in Eden? Was he there before or after “iniquity was found in” him?

We know that he was at the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil—this was his hangout, his jurisdiction and his claimed territory. He was there in the disguise of a serpent—and since then the serpent, which the Bible often refers to as “creep- ing things,” has become a symbol of his person, his principles, and his workings on earth. An exploration, even if superficial, of the world’s major pagan religions will reveal that there is a serpent somehow involved in its system of worship.

So what is the principle represented by the Tree which the serpent was “peddling” to Eve? Was this the same “peddling” he did to the rest of the universe? What stake did he have in this Tree he wanted Eve to eat from? The Bible says:

Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’”


Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, know- ing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate (Genesis 3:1-6).

This conversation reveals much to us. First, it tells us that the serpent was cunning; in Hebrew, ârûwm means “cunning (usually in a bad sense):—crafty, prudent, subtil,” (Strong’s Concordance). His questions to Eve reveal that he had a vested interest in the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil—he really wanted her to eat its fruit! He used all his charisma, cunning and deception to get her to do it, even distorting God’s original words “You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” He also proved himself a liar, because God had said “you shall surely die,” and he affirmed the opposite—“you shall NOT surely die.”

Prior to eating of his Tree, Adam and Eve did not know Good and Evil. This means that in all their interactions they knew only agape. They saw each other and God through the eyes of agape love, through unconditional, impartial selfless love. They were pure, and to them, “all things were pure.” After eating from Satan’s Tree, Adam and Eve began to see each other, and God, through the eyes of Good and Evil—through partial, conditional and self-centered eyes. They began to see evil in each other and following in the footsteps of their new master, they began to criticize each other. The ensuing conversations they had with God confirm this.

To the serpent, everything hinged on Eve’s eating of this Tree. He seduced her with the fruit, claiming it would be in her own best interest: “the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened.”

What was it about this Tree that meant so much to the serpent? What’s its meaning? Why was it next to the Tree of Life to begin with? And why wasn’t it simply called the Tree of Death? Was the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil just a test of obedience? Or was it a symbol of something highly significant in the context of the great controversy? Should we care, given this took place so long ago? Or should we simply dismiss it as mythology, as some have done?

We cannot dismiss it. Lucifer was there. This is one of our main pieces of evidence. Instead of throwing it away, we must dig, dig, and dig some more until we discover what it means. It is critical that we figure this out. This Tree is every bit relevant for us today as it was for Adam and Eve. Like a snake, it has been lurking, camouflaged under a beneficent and just appearance, hidden from our eyesight but right in front of our eyes. In fact, its true significance is about to be revealed to our generation in a way that has never been done before.


Before sin, Adam and Eve’s understanding of this Tree was simply that God had said, “don’t eat of it for if you do, you will die for sure.” To them, its meaning was indeed simply a test of obedience. Moreover, the moral system this Tree represented was in its initial stages; the Tree was just a sap- ling back then. In our day it has matured and come to full fruition—its fruit is ripe, ready to fall from the tree—no pun intended.

We would like to propose that this Tree represents the corrupt —a foundational word—principle Lucifer had conceived while still in heaven. The principle this Tree represents is the “iniquity” that was found in him. In this Tree are embedded all of his deceptions about God. If we don’t grasp its meaning, we will be completely taken by the lies of the enemy of God and man. We will explore this Tree extensively, but first we must continue to understand who Lucifer was before he sinned, and why he rebelled against God.


Lucifer was covered by “every precious stone.” “Every,” means nothing was lacking—God had created him with everything needed for perfection. “Precious”—yâqâr, means “valuable.” It can also mean “brightness, clear,

costly, excellent, fat, honourable women, precious, reputation” (Strong’s Dictionary). In other places in the Bible this word is translated as “dear,” “magnificent” and “splendid.” In 1 Samuel it is translated as “rare:”

And the word of the Lord was rare in those days; there was no widespread revelation (1 Samuel 3:1, emphasis added).

In Proverbs 17:27 yâqâr is translated as “excellent:”

He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an ‘excellent’ spirit. 28 Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of under- standing (Proverbs 17:27-28, emphasis added KJV).

Given the context of this verse, Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon argues that yâqâr means “perhaps ‘with a quiet spirit,’ to be quiet, to be meek.” The New King James Version actually does follow that line of reasoning:

He who has knowledge spares his words, and a man of understanding is of a ‘calm’ spirit. 28 Even a fool is counted wise when he holds his peace; when he shuts his lips, he is considered perceptive (Proverbs 17:27, emphasis added).

This qualifier—“precious” – indicates that its object, the stones that covered Lucifer, were indeed very special. Whatever they meant, they gave him an excellent, magnificent, splendid, calm, meek and humble spirit. The iniquity that was found in him rendered him the opposite of meek and humble: he became proud and full of himself.

We see here a creature upon whom God had bestowed exceptional qualities. Ezekiel said of him:

“You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty” (Ezekiel 28:12).

The word “seal” in Hebrew denotes a sense of finality, that of locking something up:

…the ancients were accustomed to put a seal on many things for which we use a lock…From a roll or letter when completed receiving a seal, the signification arises… (Gesenius’ Lexicon)

The idea is that when God created Lucifer He put a seal on him that said “you are perfect, I’m done, there is no more I can do here.” Lucifer was top of the line.


The word “stone” is quite significant in the Bible. It refers to Jesus as the “cornerstone” (Psalm 118:22, Isaiah 28:16, Matthew 21:42, etc…) and to His followers as “living stones” (1 Peter 2:5). The Hebrew word for stone is eben, which means “through the meaning to build; a stone.” (Strong’s Dictionary) Eben comes from the root word bânâh, which means “to build, obtain children, make, repair, set up, surely” (Strong’s Dictionary).

Gesenius’ Lexicon explains the word bânâh thus: “to build, to erect, as a house, a temple, a city, walls, defenses… it signifies to build a house for any one, i.e. to give him a stable abode; and figuratively, to cause him to prosper.”

Another word that grew out of the word bânâh is the word bên, which means “a son (as a builder of the family name)” (Strong’s Dictionary). This last word is used in Isaiah 9:6 to refer to Jesus, the “Repairer of the breach” ((Isaiah 58:12). Jesus was sent to repair the breach Lucifer had caused in God’s kingdom. He came to rebuild God’s name which Lucifer had defamed.

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son (bên) is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6).

The idea being portrayed through these words is that prior to sinning, Lucifer was a very special being who had been given “every precious stone”—everything needed in order to fulfill the purpose for which he was created: that of building, or erecting a wall of protection around God’s universal kingdom of agape love.


In trying to understand the meaning of these stones, we are reminded of the high priest’s breastplate in Moses’ sanctuary. God gave Moses very de- tailed instructions regarding the high priest’s attire because the high priest was a type of Christ. Every detail of his clothes had a symbolic meaning designed to help us understand God and His heart of agape love.

A part of the high priest’ garments, his “covering,” was a breastplate (called the breast- plate of judgment) on which were set in gold twelve stones (three columns, four rows) some of which were also in Lucifer’s “covering.” The breastplate is described below:

You shall make the breastplate of judgment. Artistically woven according to the workmanship of the ephod you shall make it: of gold, blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and fine woven linen, you shall make it. It shall be doubled into a square: a span shall be its length, and a span shall be its width. And you shall put settings of stones in it, four rows of stones: The first row shall be a sardius, a topaz, and an emerald; this shall be the first row; the second row shall be a turquoise, a sapphire, and a diamond; the third row, a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst; and the fourth row, a beryl, an onyx, and a jasper. They shall be set in gold settings. And the stones shall have the names of the sons of Israel, twelve according to their names, like the engravings of a signet, each one with its own name; they shall be according to the twelve tribes (Exodus 28:15-21).

The breastplate was positioned upon the breast, the heart of the priest. Thus it was called the “breastplate of judgment” because it is in the heart that judgments—decisions—are made.

Each stone on the high priest’s breastplate was carved with one of the names of Jacob’s twelve sons. Jacob’s sons were to be the builders of God’s kingdom on earth. They were given the oracles of God—God’s law of agape love—which, if they lived by it, was supposed to build a “safe house” for every human being that chose to seek its security in the midst of the great controversy. These sons (stones) were supposed to be the conduit for a “stable abode” for humanity; they were to guide the world in the ways of lifeagape love—and cause it to prosper and flourish.

When Jesus came into the scene He appointed twelve apostles. The names of the apostles are inscribed on the foundations of the New Jerusalem:

Now the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb (Revelation 21:14).

Why are the names of the apostles written on the foundations of the New Jerusalem and not the names of Jacob’s sons? Perhaps because it was the apostles who disseminated the pure gospel—the pure revelation of God, which they had witnessed in the person of Jesus Christ. Thus, they are the “builders”, the “stones” of the New Jerusalem, the city of God. They build it with God’s law of agape love.

Peter refers to this Old Testament concept of “stones” in his first epistle:

Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby, if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious. Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture, “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame.” There- fore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who are disobedient, “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone,” and “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.” They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed. But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy (1 Peter 2:1-10, emphasis added).

Jesus is the “living stone,” the stone of life. He was rejected by men, but He was “chosen by God and precious.” Jesus is the “chief cornerstone” upon which God’s entire house is built. We are also to be “living stones,” and we may be rejected of men but “chosen of God.” As “living stones” we are to pro- claim “the praises of Him” who called us “out of darkness into His marvellous light.” We come out of darkness when we believe what Jesus revealed about the Father of agape love; then we know that we are God’s sons and daughters—we are His people and we have “obtained mercy.” As we proceed on our study we will see what this means and how important it is to obtain mercy.

Lucifer’s covering had only nine stones—gold is a metal. Gold was a “setting,” just as it was in the high priest’s breastplate.

Some have interpreted these stones to mean this: Lucifer was indeed the seal of perfection prior to the creation of mankind—every precious stone was his covering. But when God created mankind He added a new dimension to creation, something

He hadn’t done yet. The three extra stones in the breast plate represented humanity’s three types of relationships: parent/child, sibling, and husband/wife. This is related to the unique procreative ability of human beings (as opposed to angels, for instance, who do not procreate)—we were made in the image of God—we are creators, in that sense. We have not realized our uniqueness or special-ness yet. Perhaps some day we will.

There is another instance in the Bible where stones are mentioned. In Ezekiel, the prophet says that God would destroy Lucifer “from the midst of the stones of fire,” Ezekiel 28:16. The meaning of “the stones of fire” is described by the prophet Isaiah, who, when he encountered God face to face, was mortified by his own sinfulness— he felt naked in front of God. But God’s reaction was to pour love, grace and mercy upon him through the symbolic “stones of fire.” Hear Isaiah’s own words:

“Woe is me, for I am undone!
Because I am a man of unclean lips,
And I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King,
The Lord of hosts.”

Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth with it, and said:

“Behold, this has touched your lips;
Your iniquity is taken away,
And your sin purged”
(Isaiah 6:5-6, emphasis added).

The “live coal” is a “stone of fire;” it represents God’s unconditional agape love, His grace and mercy for us, which is not based on our merits, or lack of them. In the Book of Proverbs we see the same symbolism, also in the context of unconditional love:

If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; And if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;
For so you will heap coals of fire on his head,
And the Lord will reward you (Proverbs 25:21-22).

And the apostle Paul echoes Solomon’s words:

Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head” (Romans 12:20).

Fiery stones therefore, are glimmering symbols of God’s immense heart of love and mercy. They are emblems of the immovableness (The Rock), and the unconditional nature of His agape love—a fervent love that’s depicted to be as hot as fire and as strong as stones.

This metaphor, of “fire” being God’s love, is also confirmed by another verse in the Bible, where His love is described as “flames of fire:”

For love is as strong as death, jealousy as cruel as the grave; its flames are flames of fire, a most vehement flame (Song of Solomon 8:6, emphasis added).

Could the nine stones with which Lucifer was covered perhaps be symbolic of the various facets of agape love, as delineated in 1 Corinthians 13? It may be a stretch, but worth considering:

1. Love suffers long (bears all things, endures all things – never loses patience) 2. Love is kind (does not behave rudely)
3. Love does not envy others
4. Love does not parade itself, is not puffed up (no pride)

5. Love does not seek its own (is not selfish)

6. Love is not provoked, thinks no evil (of others or toward others – it is pure and thinks only pure thoughts about others)

7. Love does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth

8. Love believes all things, hopes all things (is extremely posi- tive about one’s future)

9. Love never fails (never, ever stops loving)

If these were the “precious stones” that covered Lucifer, then he was perfect indeed. But why were there nine stones on Lucifer and twelve in the High Priest’s breastplate? Perhaps because with the creation of humanity there came into light three other aspects of God’s character, aspects that always existed, but could not have been known before the great controversy, as there was no opportunity for a sinless universe to observe them. These are:

10. Freedom
11. Impartiality 12. Equal access

If there is any merit to this interpretation, then these three extra stones would explain the twelve stones on the High Priest’s breastplate, instead of nine. Freedom, impartiality and equal access are also fundamental attributes of God’s agape love, the law by which He operates His government. But their true meaning can only come alive in the context of sin, as we shall see.


“Workmanship”—mlâkâh—means “properly, deputyship, i.e. minis- try; generally, employment” (Strong’s Concordance).

A “timbrel” is a percussion instrument, something like a tambourine—a musical instrument. His “pipes”—neqeb—mean “bezels (for a gem).” However, Gesenius’ Lexicon also states: “a socket for setting a gem, pala gemmarum (as rightly rendered by Jerome), so called from its hollowness…Others under- stand it to be a pipe,” from a root that means “to bore through.”

Since this word “pipe”—neqeb—appears only once in the entire Bible it is impossible to compare it to another context. Having said as much, these “pipes” could possibly also refer to a flute. Why?

A few verses down in Ezekiel 28:18 we read this of Lucifer: “You defiled your sanctuaries by the multitude of your iniquities.” The Hebrew word “de- filed” is châlal, which means “to bore” but it also means “to play the flute:”

châlal – A primitive root; properly to bore, that is, (by implication) to wound, to dis- solve; figuratively to profane (a person, place or thing), to break (one’s word), to begin (as if by an opening-wedge); denominatively (from H2485) to play (the flute): – begin (men began), defile, break, defile, eat (as common things), first, gather the grape thereof, take inheritance, pipe, player on instruments, pollute, (cast as) profane (self), prostitute, slay (slain), sorrow, stain, wound (Strong’s Concordance).

This brings an interesting new dimension to this study, as many of the ancient gods of human history, such as Osiris, Krishna, Pan, Kokopelli, etc were flute players. For those interested in pursuing this line of study you may read the dissertation on Mozart’s opera The Magic Flute, Die Zauberflöte and the Moral Law of Opposing Forces by Denice Grant at the University of Washington’s library (find link at www.grace-unlimited-ministries.org). If there is any merit to this line of inquiry, then Lucifer became indeed the cosmic pied piper.

Lucifer’s heavenly ministry definitely appears to have involved music in some way. The descriptive words “the workmanship of your timbrels and pipes” indicate that he was a musician. And since he was the highest of angels we could assume that perhaps he was the master musician of heaven. Could it be that music was the language of heaven? And that Lucifer communicated God’s messages through music? We don’t know this for a fact, of course; it is only conjecture.


Moving on in our word study we arrive at the word “anointed.” Lucifer was not just an anointed cherub; he was the anointed cherub. This gives us an indication of his uniqueness and special role amongst the entire angelic host, whose numbers are expressed in Revelation thus:

Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the elders; and the number of them was ten thou- sand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands (Revelation 5:11).

This is a vast number, whatever it is, and it gives us a new perspective regarding Lucifer’s role prior to his fall, as he was the leader of this vast throng. Knowing this also helps us to understand what kind of influence he had, and how his influence played out in his rebellion.

The Hebrew word “anointed”—mimshach—has an interesting con- notation. It means “in the sense of expansion; outspread (i.e. with out- stretched wings):—anointed,” (Strong’s Concordance).

Mimshach evolved from mâshach, “to rub with oil, i.e. to anoint; by implication, to consecrate; also to paint.” (Strong’s Concordance) Lucifer was created and consecrated for a very specific purpose. What was his position, his occupation and the ministry for which he was created? What did his “outspread,” “outstretched wings,” mean? The next section should answer this question.


A cherub is an angel of the highest order in heaven. Lucifer was a “covering” cherub which made him even higher—the highest order of heaven. The word “covers” in Hebrew is çâkak, which means “properly, to entwine as a screen; by implication, to fence in, cover over, (figuratively) protect” (Strong’s Concordance).

So we see that Lucifer was a protector, a defender. This explains the outstretched wings— they are a symbol of entwining something “as a screen,” fencing it in, covering over, protecting. Jesus Himself also used the idea of “outstretched wings” as a symbol of protection:

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing” (Matthew 23:37, emphasis added)!

Lucifer’s task, like the metaphoric “stone”—which builds, protects, and creates a safe environment for all creatures—was to ensure that the universe was protected. He had been given the sacred office of a guardian. What did he guard, protect, or defend? Whatever it was, it must have been something of great importance to God.

In order to understand this we must move to the earthly sanctuary built by Moses in the desert. The sanctuary was “the copy and shadow of the heavenly things” (Hebrews 8:5), therefore by looking at it we may learn of “heavenly things.” The sanctuary was not necessarily a copy of a heavenly building, but of heavenly things, because in the Book of Revelation it says “And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it,” Revelation 21:22.

If we look at the temple as simply a literal building we will miss out completely on the messages God intends to convey to us through its symbolic meanings. These things are the things we are looking into at this very moment—God’s character, Sa- tan’s rebellion, and every step of the plan God set in motion to reclaim the human race and to enlighten the rest of the universe: the plan of salvation. Every activity and object in the earthly sanctuary was a reflection of what has transpired and will yet transpire since the beginning of the great controversy, and reveals how God is dealing with this problem. Through the sanctuary we learn that He has been dealing only through the principle which is the foundation of His government: agape love.

Thus in the earthly sanctuary we learn of Lucifer’s purpose and position in heaven before his rebellion:

You shall make a mercy seat of pure gold; two and a half cubits shall be its length and a cubit and a half its width. And you shall make two cherubim of gold; of hammered work you shall make them at the two ends of the mercy seat. Make one cherub at one end, and the other cherub at the other end; you shall make the cherubim at the two ends of it of one piece with the mercy seat. And the cherubim shall stretch out their wings above, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and they shall face one another; the faces of the cherubim shall be toward the mercy seat. You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the Testimony that I will give you. And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are on the ark of the Testimony, about everything which I will give you in commandment to the children of Israel (Exodus 25:17-22, emphasis added).

In Moses’ sanctuary there were two covering cherubs. Both of them out- stretched their wings over the “mercy seat,” which was stationed in the Most Holy Place compartment. The mercy seat was the lid of the ark that contained the “Testimony,” the tablets of the Ten Commandments. The two cherubs “covered” or stood over the mercy seat and the ark of the Testimony.

The Ten Commandments are a compact version of God’s law of agape love adapt- ed specifically for the human race. They embody our relationship with God and with our fellow human family. In a nutshell then, the Holy of Holies represents the very throne room of God and the Ten Commandments, which is a transcript of His character of love. “Mercy seat” is another way of saying “throne of mercy.” The word “seat” refers to God’s throne. The throne is a symbol of God’s government, and it is called the “mercy seat” because mercy is the foundation of His government.

Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; mercy and truth go before Your face (Psalm 89:14).

In mercy the throne will be established; and One will sit on it in truth, in the tabernacle of David, judging and seeking justice and hastening righteousness” (Isaiah 16:5, emphasis added).

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mer- cy and find grace to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16, emphasis added).

As “the anointed cherub who covers,” Lucifer was one of those two “covering,” “protecting”cherubs that guarded God’s government of mercy. As such, he held one of the closest positions to God in the entire universe—he was a protector, a keeper of God’s law of love and mercy. By extension, he was a protector of the uni- verse, a protector of life, because it is through God’s law of love that eternal life is made possible—God’s law is what protects life. God’s law is the perfect mechanism, or system, for coexistence. There was no death in God’s universe. By rebelling against the very thing he used to guard, Lucifer himself brought death into being.

Lucifer’s employment had everything to do with the law of agape love. Since agape love is the very essence of God’s character, it is also the most vital element of His kingdom. The “keeper of the law” would naturally be deemed the most vital position in heaven. Therefore, Lucifer’s title elevated him to a place of great power and influence in the universe.

Ezekiel says that God Himself placed Lucifer on the holy mountain of God: “I established you” (Ezekiel 18:14). God had given him this most privileged position in the cosmos, right there in His presence—He had created him for that very purpose.

Kingdoms cannot survive without laws. It is through law that order is kept. It is the same in heaven. God has a law upon which depends the survival of the universe. But His law creates perfect harmony and order. God’s order is entirely different from this world’s order.

Given these facts, we can conclude that Lucifer was intimately acquainted with God’s law of agape love. He knew that the foundation of the law is “mercy.” He was created with the capacity to live by that perfect law, and love and mercy were the only principles that ruled his own character. Thus when we say that Lucifer was in a position of great power and influence, we must realize that prior to his rebellion, his power and influence were exercised only within the parameters of agape love.

We can safely assume that before his rebellion he lived by God’s law of love with absolute joy and without reservations. As such, he enjoyed peace and harmony within himself, with God, and with all other created beings. He was meek, he was humble; he had the heart of a servant. He knew nothing else. Thus from the day he was created he fully embraced God’s eternal principle of love by which the universe was governed. And, because of agape, he did however have freedom to choose otherwise. And one day he did.

That fateful day, Lucifer turned against God and His law. It became a war on God’s government, a war specifically targeting the law of mercy which he had heretofore protected.

And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought… (Revelation 12:7).

Why? What possible criticism could Lucifer have had against God’s law? We have a possible answer, but first let’s delve deeper and see what happened in his mind as he rebelled against the “perfect law of liberty” (James 1:25).


We have arrived at the crucial moment; here is where things begin to change. Ezekiel says that Lucifer was “perfect” in his ways. After all he was “the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty” (Ezekiel 28:12). He was God’s supreme creation. There was absolutely no flaw in him, no propensity to evil.

But what does “perfect in his ways” mean according to the Bible? The word tâmıym—“perfect”—means “entire,” perfect, also “complete” (Strong’s Dictionary). To be “entire” means to be full, complete, undivided. Tâmıym also means to be morally undefiled, without blemish or spot, upright, integrity, and truth (Strong’s Dictionary). This means that Lucifer was morally pure— white, with no black spots whatsoever. There was no contradiction, mixture of opposites, duality, or duplicity in him at all. He was pure and holy as God.

Derek—“ways”—means “a road, figuratively, a course of life or mode of action” (Strong’s Dictionary). What is a “course of life” and “mode of action?” Isn’t it one’s moral, ethical code? And isn’t it one’s moral code that determines one’s character, one’s “mode of life?” This means that Lucifer was morally faultless—he had a “perfect,” “entire” character based on a “perfect,” “entire” moral law—agape love. God’s law is “perfect” and “holy:”

But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does (James 1:25).

Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good (Romans 7:12).

The law is “perfect” and “holy” because it is pure, not corrupt; it is un- changing. Thus, Lucifer was not split in any way—his moral make-up was undivided. He was driven by unconditional love and he was impartial. He was always the same, unchangeable in all circumstances, just like God is.

All this implies that when “iniquity was found in him” Lucifer ceased to be like God. He went from being “complete,” “entire,” to being fractured, double-minded. The apostle James, whose Bible was the Hebrew Old Testament, knew his Hebrew words well. He also used the word “perfect” in connection with the word “entire”—both in the context of “double-mindedness.”

But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways (James 1:4-8 KJV, emphasis added).

Lucifer’s perfection prior to sinning infers that he was “stable” in all his ways. But he wasn’t like that on his own; it was God’s law of agape love that made him thus. He merely reflected what he saw in the Creator. God creates intelligent beings who are able to reflect what they see in Him. This is a biblical principle laid out in the Book of Micah:

For all people walk each in the name of his god, but we will walk in the name of the Lord our God forever and ever (Micah 4:5, emphasis added).

All intelligent creatures—including us—walk according to their concept of God. Our understanding of God will determine our relationship with others and will even impact our own judgment, for we will be judged by whatever judgment we use. This explains why God is so insistent that we come to know Him as He truly is:

And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent (John 17:3, emphasis added).

“For My people are foolish, they have not known Me. They are silly children, and they have no understanding. They are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge” (Jeremiah 4:22, emphasis added).

And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life (1 John 5:20, emphasis added).

To be “entire”—tâmıym—also means to be “without blemish.” Elsewhere in the Bible, amazingly, this word is used to describe a spotless, unblemished sacrificial lamb. In the case of the lamb, tâmıym means that it had to be completely white, with no black spots whatsoever. This is a metaphor through which we can better under- stand what God is trying to show us. The pure, entirely white lamb was a symbol that pointed to the coming Messiah, and represented His purity of character—He would reveal a God whose character is pure light (agape love) and in whom “there is no darkness (iniquity) at all” (1 John 1:5). This would be the message of the Messiah.

So now we can see where the biblical metaphors of black and white, light and darkness, come from. Moses wrote;

Your lamb shall be without blemish [TÂMıYM], a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats (Exodus 12:5; KJV, emphasis added).

The “spotless” sacrificial lamb was a symbol of Jesus, of whom John the Baptist said: “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29)! As the “perfect” Lamb, Jesus had a “perfect,” “entire” character. He had absolutely no dark spots in Him. This means that He lived completely by the law of agape love and mercy, and never once stepped outside or deviated from it. His character was unconditional, impartial, undivided, unmixed with Good and Evil. Jesus’ character was single and stable in all His ways.

Ezekiel’s description of Lucifer implies that he used to be spotless just as the spotless Lamb of God is spotless, who is perfect in His ways. Thus, prior to sinning, Lucifer had the same pure, undivided character as Christ.

Evil originated with Lucifer, who rebelled against the government of God. Before his fall he was a covering cherub, distinguished by his excellence. God made him good and beautiful, as near as possible like Himself (The Review and Herald, September 24, 1901) {4BC 1163.1, emphasis added}.

The turning point, the thing that caused Lucifer to change from his perfect condition was “iniquity”—“you were perfect in your ways till iniquity was found in you.” Whatever it was, iniquity caused Lucifer to become the opposite of Christ. He became conditional, partial, divided, double-minded, mixed with contradictions and thus unstable in all his ways. In fact, the occultists call Lucifer by the name of Mercurius (the “alchemical spirit”), after the metal mercury, precisely because of this metal’s instability and volatility. Of Mercurius, Carl Jung, the renowned psychiatrist and alchemist, said: “he is good to the good and evil to the evil.” This is a sign of an unstable character that changes according to circumstances. This is what Lucifer became once “iniquity was found in him.”

By contrast, Jesus is good to the good, as well as good to the evil. He addressed this in the Sermon of the Mount when He said:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect” (Matthew 5:43-48).

In essence, Jesus is saying: in the past you were told to be conditional and partial—to love your neighbours and hate your enemies. But if you want to be perfect—tâmıym—as God is perfect, then be good to the good and good also to the evil. Be unconditional. Be impartial. Because this is how God is.

This is what “perfect” and “entire” means. God does not change from good to evil or from evil to good. He is good at all times and in all circumstances. And this is where Lucifer deviated from God; he developed a dual character, a double-mindedness that defiled his entire being.

If we examine how Lucifer deceived Eve we will see this precise theme of singleness versus duality at work. The Bible tells us specifically how the serpent deceived Eve:

But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ (2 Corinthians 11:3).

What can we learn from this verse? First, that the serpent deceived Eve. Then, that he deceived her by “craftiness”—subtlety, cunningness. The serpent’s cunningness is best described as “sophistry:”

Eve yielded to the lying sophistry of the devil in the form of a serpent. She ate the fruit, and realized no immediate harm {Con 14.3, emphasis added}.

…man was deceived; his mind was darkened by Satan’s sophistry. The height and depth of the love of God he did not know. For him there was hope in a knowledge of God’s love. By beholding His character he might be drawn back to God {DA 761.5, emphasis added}.

“Sophistry” is an interesting word, because it comes from the root Greek word sophia, which means “wisdom.” By definition, sophistry is a fallacious, false, deceptive reasoning, based on a false wisdom. Satan’s wisdom is the knowledge found in the Garden of Eden in the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. In the Bible, the word daath—knowledge—is often equated, through Hebrew parallelism, to the word “wisdom:”

Job speaks without knowledge, His words are without wisdom’ (Job 34:35).

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction (Proverbs 1:7).

For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding (Proverbs 2:6 KJV).

Now, we know from the Bible that Satan’s “wisdom” has been ruling the world since Adam and Eve ate of this Tree. Thus, the so-called conventional “wisdom of the world” must come from him and from his Tree, representing his law. Can you see the potential for deception here? Who would question “wisdom” itself?

Satan rejected God and His love. And his new “wisdom,” which we have adopted, has blocked from our view the Creator’s infinite love, which is His wisdom. The deceptions embedded in his sophistry separated us from the Creator, the only source of life, and this is a spiritual death. This spiritual death destined us to die a physical death. The spiritual death came first, and the physical death is a result, a consequence of the spiritual death. But while it is true that we have been living by Satan’s wisdom, for us there was still hope because we didn’t know the fullness of God’s love, which is His wisdom. Likewise, if we are spiritually reborn into the truth, physical life follows.

And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses (Colossians 2:13, emphasis added).

We cannot accept or reject something we don’t know. For us, there was “hope in a knowledge of God’s love,” in a knowledge of His mercy and forgiveness, and that is what Jesus came to give us. There was hope that by beholding the love of God in the person of His Son Jesus Christ, we “might be drawn back to God.” There was hope that we might see that Satan’s “wisdom” is no wisdom at all, and that God’s love is the ultimate wisdom for the sustainability of life in the universe.

As we mentioned earlier, knowing God is extremely important accord- ing to the Bible. Jesus seemed to suggest that eternal life itself is embedded in the true knowledge of God. If we knew God, we would also know that we have eternal life. Consider His words carefully:

And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do (John 17:3-4, emphasis added).

And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that who- ever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:14-16).

For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak. And I know that His command is everlasting life. Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak” (John 12:49-50, emphasis added).

To know God is to know that we have eternal life, because once we know God, we also know that He not only has the power to give us eternal life, but He also has the desire, the will to do it. Jesus knew that God’s “command,” God’s will for us, “is everlasting life.”

Going back to 2 Corinthians 11:3, the second thing we can learn from this passage is how Satan deceived Eve:

But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ (2 Corinthians 11:3).

Satan “corrupted” Eve’s mind. This implies that at first her mind was pure; but the Serpent was able to rewire her mind somehow. What Satan did was, he reprogrammed her mind with a lie—implied by the word “craftiness.” The word “corrupted” suggests that he changed something that was pure into something impure (if the reader recalls, he has corrupt principles).

But what did he corrupt? He corrupted her view of Christ—he corrupted her mind “from the simplicity that is in Christ.” He managed to change her understanding of Christ from its correct or original form into an altered, corrupt form—a falsehood. Thus by changing her concept of God’s character he changed her character—from then on she reflected a false god. Paul’s fear was that Satan would also do this to the Corinthians, and ultimately to us.

Let’s reason for a second. It was Christ who created the earth. He was the one who would come to meet with Adam and Eve “in the cool of the day” (Genesis 3:8). He met with the couple daily, face to face, and one can only imagine how wonderful those encounters must have been. So in what way exactly did the serpent make Eve think differently about Christ? What exactly did this corruption of her mind “from the simplicity that is in Christ” entail?

The Greek word haplotes—simplicity—means “singleness.” In fact, “singleness” is this word’s primary meaning. Thus, before the serpent deceived Eve she used to see Jesus Christ as He truly is, as One who has a “singleness” of character; but after the serpent deceived her she no longer saw Christ that way. Her mind was corrupted to think He was the opposite of “singleness”—a dualistic being, having a mixed character, a dark and a light side all at once. In her mind, Christ became “spotted,” “blemished,” “double-minded.”

Hence, if Lucifer stopped being “entire” or “whole” or having a “singleness” of character when iniquity was found in him, then iniquity has to be a divided and a dividing principle. It has to be something that contains and causes a dualism, a mixture of black and white, a mingling of light and darkness—a double-mindedness.

Not surprisingly, this precise mixture of opposites is found in the Garden, and is embodied in the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Here is something that contains and causes a dualism, a mingling of opposites such as black and white or light and darkness. This is why Ezekiel points us directly to the Garden of Eden, because it is there that we can learn what happened to Lucifer, and what he has done in his war against God’s character and law.

Given all that we have seen so far, iniquity then has to be something which is rep- resented by the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. This “something” is what caused Lucifer to lose the “singleness” of character which he had before, when he was “perfect” and “entire.” This “something” is what caused him to fall from heaven and the principles of heaven; heaven, where there is only agape, “simplicity,” “singleness.”

The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil has to represent something specific—and whatever it is, it has to be Lucifer’s original sin. This Knowledge of Good and Evil, which the Serpent peddled as “wisdom,” is not constant because it contains a contrary duality; it is not stable as agape is stable because it sways back and forth between Good and Evil, and we will talk about this in more detail later on.

God, however, cannot waver back and forth between good and evil be- cause God is agape love, and agape is constant, unchangeable, incorruptible. Paul addresses God’s uncorruptibleness in the Book of Romans:

Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things (1:22-23, emphasis added).

But after eating from this Tree of duality, Adam and Eve came to perceive God precisely as that: inconstant, unpredictable, volatile and contradictory, in other words, corruptible. That is why they hid from Him: because they were afraid of Him—they thought He was coming to bring harm upon them, that He was coming to punish them. They now saw Him as having a dual character, as a Good and Evil God.

Every parent must remember the first time they punished their little, cuddly, precious child. How that unsuspecting, trusting baby must have been taken completely by surprise by their parents’ menacing tones, demeanor and violent actions. What happens the second time a parent comes to punish that child? Does he/she run away, or recoil in fear? What happens to that previously loving relationship, and to the trust that used to be there between parent and child? This is what happened to Adam and Eve. God had not punished them, but because they ate of the forbidden Tree, they opened themselves up to Satan’s influence, and he, through the principles embedded in the Knowledge of Good and Evil, corrupted their thinking and view of God. They automatically assumed God was coming to punish them.

Lucifer lost his purity, his entireness because of iniquity’s dualism. This is foundational to our understanding of what happened in his revolt. The iniquity that was “found in him” entailed a departure from that “entire” quality, that single- ness of character which the word tâmıym implies, and which Jesus revealed in His life and death here on earth. Iniquity transformed Lucifer into a being filled with metaphoric “blemishes,” “spots.” To use a visual aid, now he looked more like a spotted lamb, having a mixture of black and white patches all over.

So what is the Knowledge of Good and Evil? Let’s reason this out. If what had been inside Lucifer prior to sin was God’s moral law of agape love— Lucifer “was perfect in his ways” and “ways” means “course of life or mode of action” and this is what had made him perfect—then what caused him to become imperfect had to be another moral law, a moral law that made him “divided” inside—“within.” What could iniquity be then, but a new moral law—a moral law devised by Lucifer—the moral law of Good and Evil?

This was the initial issue, the foundational cause of the war in heaven. Lucifer turned against God because he felt that he had better principles than God—he felt that his new, dual moral law of Good and Evil was better than God’s single moral law of agape love. As we keep connecting the dots this will become more and more evident.

Satan had “principles” in heaven when he rebelled. These principles are the same principles he uses on earth:

The principles of Satan’s working in heaven are the same principles by which he works through human agents in this world. It is through these corrupting principles that every earthly empire and the churches have been increasingly corrupted. It is by the working out of these principles that Satan deceives and corrupts the whole world from the beginning to the ending. He is continuing this same policy-working, originally begun in the heavenly universe. He is energizing the whole world with his violence with which he corrupted the world in the days of Noah {4BC 1163.8, emphasis added}.

What are “the principles of Satan’s working in heaven”? Ezekiel points us to the Gar- den of Eden. The formulation of Lucifer’s principles, the Knowledge of Good and Evil, began in heaven. His principle was implemented on earth when Adam and Eve chose to eat the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Their choice gave him the right to establish a government on earth based on his corrupt principles.

What characterizes his principles? They are “corrupting,” which implies they are impure, mixed, dual. It is “by the working out” of these “corrupt” principles that Satan “deceives.” His corrupt principles are so deceptive that they have managed to take hold of “every earthly empire” and even the “churches”—not to mention one third of the angels as well. Thus, it is through them that Satan deceives the entire world:

So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world (Revelation 12:9, emphasis added).

Satan has been deceiving the “whole world from the beginning to the ending” since Adam and Eve ate of his Tree. His work so long done undercover is to be unmasked at this time in the history of the world. We are living at a time when God is calling us to put Him on trial:

“Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water” (Revelation 14:6, emphasis added).

The apostle Paul points to this trial when he says:

As it is written: “That You may be justified in Your words, and may over- come when You are judged” (Romans 3:4, emphasis added).

The hour of God’s judgment has come. He who “made the heaven and the earth, the sea and springs of water” is to be put on trial so that we can investigate whether He is the Creator and also the Destroyer. Can He be both?

God’s character is singularly agape love. Singularly means uncorrupted. God’s character is not corrupted with any evil. He is simply love. This is the message that Jesus, the “True Witness” (Revelation 3:14) came to give us:

This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5).