Angel FAQs: The Fall of Satan

The Bible reveals very little about Satan's exodus from heaven, but some passages may tell more than we think.

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Satan’s name, then, became Helel in Hebrew, Lucifer in Latin, and Morning Star in English. This verse is the only place in the Bible where the word "Lucifer" has been substituted for Satan as a name. Many English translations have stopped using "Lucifer" in this verse in favor of literally translating the Hebrew as "morning star."

(v. 12b)You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations!
(v. 13) You said in your heart, 'I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain.'
(v. 14) I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.
(v. 15) But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit.

Is the prophet Isaiah only saying that the King of Babylon was evil like the devil? Or are we to interpret these verses as recording the fall of Satan? If the latter is true, then the five "I will" declarations depict the sin of Satan and show his rebellion and desire to be like God.

The following verses from Ezekiel 28 may also have a double meaning:

(v.11) The word of the Lord came to me:
(v. 12) Son of man, take up a lament concerning the King of Tyre and say to him, ‘This is what the sovereign Lord says: You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty'. (v. 13) You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz and emerald, chrysolite, onyx and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and beryl. Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared.
(v. 14) 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.
(v. 15) You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you.

(v. 16) Through your widespread trade you were filled with violence and you sinned. So I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, O guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones.
(v. 17) Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to earth; I made you a spectacle of you before kings.


Using poetic imagery, Ezekiel describes the ruler of Tyre as the first man created in Eden, a fully clothed priest (the stones are those worn by the priest), and a guardian cherub. Yet this sentence also be read as having a double meaning; the verses can be interpreted as a description of Satan as someone who was full of wisdom, beauty, and splendor in the beginning but who later became corrupted by pride. Verses 14 and 16 are the basis for believing Satan was a cherub.

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William D. Webber
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