Did God Create a Devil?
Telecast Date: September 16, 1982
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The World Tomorrow, the Worldwide Church of God presents the World Tomorrow with Herbert W Armstrong... Ladies and gentlemen Herbert W Armstrong.
   Satan the devil is in the world news again. Newsweek magazine came out with a three-page article about Satan the devil, but is there a devil after all? Is the devil real or is he only a figment of the imagination? Science has tried to pinpoint the origin of Satan in mythology or make-believe or something of the minds of men, but science knows nothing of spirit and Satan is a Spirit Being and Satan has decided the whole world. He is invisible. You can't see him. You can't hear him. You can't taste or smell him. So how are you going to know anything about him? You can't, except as it is revealed.
   Now you can prove whether the Bible is true. You can prove whether God exists. I proved it to my satisfaction; I don't need to prove it to yours. I hope you can prove it to yourself. I have proved that the Bible is God speaking to us. He does speak to me in the Bible and I comprehend it. I understand it. The Bible is God speaking.
   But science knows nothing of spiritual things, spiritual knowledge. They are aware only of material, physical knowledge. What they can't see, what they can't hear, taste, smell or feel they just are ignorant of and they feel it simply does not exist. But the Bible reveals the truth about God. The Bible reveals the truth about Satan the devil and about spiritual knowledge and the Bible primarily is a spiritual book and that's why so few people so very, very few can even understand or comprehend the Bible. It is the most misunderstood, the most misrepresented, the most falsely interpreted, the most twisted, maligned of any book that has ever been written. They try to interpret it. You don't try to interpret and put a different meaning on things that men write, but people do do that to what God has given us in the Bible.
   Now the Bible reveals spiritual knowledge and you either accept what the Bible reveals or admit you are ignorant, you just don't know, you are in utter ignorance and spiritual knowledge is actually far more important and is of greater sum total of knowledge and spiritual knowledge about spiritual things even than the material. And, you are ignorant of it if you can't accept what the Bible reveals, it's one way or the other.
   Now did God create a devil? Did God create a devil to torment us? To disturb us, to trouble us? What is God? In John 4:24 you will read: "God is A spirit..." (John 4:24) Or some translations will have it: "God is spirit..." (John 4:24 RSV)
   God is composed of spirit, not matter. Now the Bible says no man has seen God at any time; and you have not seen God. Jesus Christ came to represent God and to reveal God the Father; and believe it or not, the world had not known anything about God the Father until Christ came. Very few people know it, but Jesus Christ was the God of the Old Testament, the Yahveh of the Old Testament who was the original; the — as you have in the Greek language, 'the Logos', who was made flesh and dwelt among us. But: "...the [Logos] was with God, and the [Logos also] was God." (John 1:1)
   And so when Jesus came He was God with us.

Not All Angels Were Righteous

   Next I would like to have you notice in the very first chapter of the book of Hebrews, something about angels. God created angels and very few people know it, but God created angels before He created man. There was no man in existence until after angels had been created and for all we know for millions or billions or trillions of years because angels are immortal spirits. Now, in the first chapter of Hebrews and verses 6 and 7:
   "And again [it says], when he [God] bringeth [forth] the firstborn into the world, he saith And let all the angels of God worship him." (Hebrews 1:6)
   Christ is the firstborn into the world He said; "...let all the angels of God worship him." (Hebrews 1:6), because Christ Himself was God, He was God with us. And, seventh verse:
   "And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits..." (Hebrews 1:7)
   So angels are composed of spirit. They're not composed of matter. You cannot see angels. Now we speak of the holy angels, angels as being holy and righteous and perfect like God. But I would like to have you notice something here. I wonder if you have ever realized that this could be true? In II Peter, the second chapter and verse 4: "For if God spared not the angels that sinned..." (II Peter 2:4)
   Can you believe that, my friends? Angels that sinned! Can you think of sinning angels? Oh, yes, angels did sin. They went wrong; some angels, not all angels. As a matter of fact, the Bible indicates that a third of them sinned and went wrong and perhaps, probably, all the indication is that the other two thirds are holy and righteous.
   It says here: "For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to [tartaroo]..." (II Peter 2:4)
   And that is a word used only once in the Bible, that is the Greek word. It says 'hell' in English, but 'hell' is not the right translation, it's a condition rather than a place.
   "...and delivered them into chains of darkness [that is darkness in knowledge and understanding, twisted minds] delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;" (II Peter 2:4)
   So angels are going to come to judgment. But they were the sinning angels. Again, you read in the Bible — in the New Testament — that Christians are ultimately to judge angels even, because we are to become of a higher rank than even angels, although angels now are of a much higher rank than human beings (I Corinthians 6:3). Have much greater minds than human beings. They are spirit beings and they are composed of spirit.
   Now let's turn over just a little further into the book of Jude and verses 6 and 7:
   "And the angels which kept not their first estate [now, they had an estate where they lived, where they dwelt and they didn't keep it] they kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation [there was a habitation where they lived, where they inhabited], he hath reserved unto everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. Even... [Now notice this] Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, and set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire." (Jude v.6-7)
   Now, they suffered the vengeance of eternal fire, but that fire isn't still burning. Eternal fire doesn't mean fire that continues to burn eternally or forever at all, again I want to turn back and notice in the second chapter of Hebrews, and verse 5:
   "For unto the angels hath he [God] not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak." (Hebrews 2:5)
   Now, it is speaking here of the world to come. It's talking about the world tomorrow. That was the very message of Christ and His gospel, the world tomorrow. That is the message that we preach on this program; the world tomorrow, a better civilization, a new and a different world, a different civilization altogether.
   This is not God's world. This is really Satan's world. You need to know a little something about this Satan because he's just as invisible as God and people know even less about him than they even know..... as a matter of fact, they don't know much about God. A lot of people just think they do. But they don't really. Absolutely, I've said time and again there is no religion on earth that even knows who and what God is. Now, how are you going to know who and what God is? Well, God reveals Himself in the Bible and the Bible tells you who and what God is, but no one seems to believe it. They don't understand the Bible.
   I think, wasn't it a week ago, I spoke on God's secret code. God has a secret code. Do you know that young teenagers have a secret code. Now we have summer camps. We have them in Scotland. We have them in Australia. We have them just south of Canada in northern Minnesota and again in Texas. But we have many teenagers between ages 13 and 18 come for 2-3 weeks or three weeks depending in each case; and you know, we find that teenagers, and every few years they have a new language that they speak. Now they speak their own language. Their parents don't know what they're talking about. Well, I was talking a week ago about Hitler's secret code and his secret machine that he had that was called Enigma. And he felt that without that machine you couldn't decipher his secret language — by which he sent from his high command — the orders to the various generals on the various battle fronts around the world.
   Well the Bible is God's secret code and very few have ever comprehended it. Of course, the Bible is composed of history and of prophecy and of righteous living. People understand a little about righteous living. They can understand something about the history and the historic portions of the Bible because that is all speaking of actual physical, material things that have happened. But the prophecies — why almost no one understands the prophecies of the Bible.

Symbols of Prophecy Revealed

   Now let's go a little further. Revelation 13 and verse 2: "And the beast... which I saw [which the apostle John saw in a vision revealing, in symbol, things that were going to happen on earth later;] And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority." (Revelation 13:2)
   Now I have shown you that this Beast clearly represented a government on earth. It was a succession of gentile world governments starting with the old Chaldean empire known as Babylon 600 years before Christ; and coming down to our present time.
   Now it says here that the dragon gave him his seat and his power and great authority; as it says in another, yes, right here, his great authority. Now who then is the dragon? Well, we turn back just a page or two to the twelfth chapter of Revelation:
   "And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels [Michael is a super-archangel, a cherub, and only three are mentioned in the Bible, this cherub and his angels] fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan..." (Revelation 12:7-9)
   So, the dragon is merely a symbol for Satan. It says so, that's what is says and that's what it means. Now the devil then is the one who gave this great political system of gentile governments their seat and great power and authority.

Did God Create a Devil?

   Now, did God create a devil? Let's go back to Isaiah 14 now in the Old Testament. And in Isaiah 14 it begins speaking in verse 4, it says:
   "...thou shalt take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!" (Isaiah 14:4)
   Now that is speaking of a personage yet to come in the very next few years ruling over Europe, probably eastern Europe as well as western Europe. And it is speaking of that man. But it is the one that will be sitting on the throne of the continuation of those gentile governments, that I spoke about; and where Satan the devil gave it its seat, and power, and authority. And was really deceiving it, and by deception was ruling it. Now then skipping down to verse 12.
   "How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning [now, Lucifer {1} is a Hebrew word, it's a name, and it means shining star of the dawn, how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!" (Isaiah 14:12)
   "For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven [now, he was below heaven, he was on the earth; I want you to notice, he said; I will ascend into heaven], I will exalt my throne..." (Isaiah 14:13)
   He had a throne, he was a ruler, and he is the one who gave these earthly gentile governments their power, who swayed them, who deceived them, who ruled them. And, he is the one who deceived all nations:
   He was ruling over these gentile nations, the ancient Chaldean Empire, the Persian Empire, the Greco-Macedonian Empire, then the Roman Empire and in the Middle Ages the Holy Roman Empire. And it is now, believe it or not, it is forming for a resurrection in Europe right now! And you're going to be astounded when it soon comes as it soon will! I can't tell you whether it will be later this year, whether it will be next year, whether it'll be five years from now, but it's coming very soon.
   "I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; So, he was under the clouds. He was here on earth. He had a throne, that throne was on the earth. He was a great ruler and invisibly he was ruling over the nations of the earth.
   He says; "I will ascend above the clouds. I will be like the most High." (Isaiah 14:14)
   Or a better translation is, 'I will become the Most High'. He wanted to even be God over everything. But, let's go next to the twenty-eighth chapter of Ezekiel and here is a prophecy of the Prince of Tyre. You start in the first verse:
   "The Word of the [Eternal] unto me, saying, Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyre..." (Ezekiel 28:1-2)
   The people of Tyre have moved from there, they are in another place, and it's exactly where this same head of the coming United States of Europe or Roman Empire is going to be sitting. Notice what it says of him:
   "...Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty." (Ezekiel 28:12)
   God can't say that of any human. Whoever this is talking about is the one who was ruling over the Prince of Tyre. This is the King of Tyre. It says here: "Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus..." (Ezekiel 28:12)
   The Prince of Tyre is the human man that will be sitting on an earthly throne. But, here's the King of Tyre which represented Satan the devil:
   "...Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God..." (Ezekiel 28:12-13)
   He was there clear back in Eden at the time of Adam. And verse 14:
   "Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth..." (Ezekiel 28:14)
   He was an anointed cherub. His wings had covered the very throne of God, you read in the twenty-fifth chapter of Exodus. And there were two cherubs, or archangels, one on each side of the throne whose wings covered the very throne of God. Now, verse 15:
   "Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee." (Ezekiel 28:15)
   Now here is a created being. I asked the question — did God create a devil? This was not a devil. This was a perfect archangel and he was perfect in all of his ways from the day God created him. But he had a mind and he had the right of choice, freedom of choice. He had a mind that could think, that could reason and that could have attitudes; either attitudes of love and cooperation and of giving and helping and sharing. Or he could have attitudes of jealousy and envy and of competition and strife. And it shows that he had that kind of an attitude — competition and strife. He was jealous. God had put him on this earth. He knew of the greater planets and all of the heavens. Finally, in verse 17 it says:
   "Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness..." (Ezekiel 28:17)
   And so he was going to be cast back down to earth just as he was after he ascended up to heaven to try to conquer God. And of course, there is a battle up in heaven and apparently he ascended up to heaven once before even man was ever created and he is going to ascend up there again.

Our Time Today

   Let's get back to our time today and notice in II Corinthians chapter four and verse four. II Corinthians 4, verse 3. "But if our gospel be hid..." (II Corinthians 4:3)
   And the Gospel is hid, people don't understand it. The true Gospel of Christ is not being preached today. You hear it every Sunday. Television is full of religious programs. They preach A gospel. It's man's gospel ABOUT Christ! Not the Gospel that Jesus brought.
   "But if our gospel be hid, it is hid from them that are lost: In whom the god of this world [meaning Satan] hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ [not about Christ, but the Gospel OF Christ], who is the image of God, should shine unto them." (II Corinthians 4:3-4)
   A great light coming suddenly when you've been in darkness for a long time will practically blind you for awhile. And the light of God's truth does seem to blind people and they can't seem to accept it.
   Now in Ephesians the second chapter and the first two verses where it says:
   "And you [that is the people in the Church, the Christians, converted people in the Church at Ephesus;] And you hath he quickened [that is, made alive, not immortal, but spiritually alive], who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world [what is the course of this world? They were all in it before they were converted;] the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit [Satan the devil is a spirit;] the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:" (Ephesians 2:1-2)
   He is working IN people. And Satan has deceived all nations, all people and all religions, believe it or not; and that's a hard thing to believe. Some day the world's going to wake up to the truth and it's going to be absolutely dumbfounded and astounded when it sees the truth because it has been deceived. YOU have been deceived. I was deceived until God opened my eyes and made me willing to accept the truth. Some people hear the truth but they're not willing to accept it.
   I want you to notice, the sixth chapter of Ephesians and verses 11 and 12: "Put on the whole armour of God..." (Ephesians 6:11)
   This is a message to real Christians who really are converted, who have repented and who have believed Christ and believed what He said and His message:
   "Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of [Satan] the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood [that is, our problems and our troubles and our controversies are not with other human beings as we think], but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness [or wicked spirits] in high places." (Ephesians 6:11-12)
   Wicked spirits in high places that are really ruling the world, Satan and his demons. And the world doesn't know it because it can't see them, it can't hear them. And Satan has been — he's the prince of the power of the air. He surcharges the air with his attitude of vanity, of coveting and of jealousy and envy, of competition and strife, of wanting to destroy, of wanting to take away from others, that leads to controversy and to war and to death and to every wrong thing, every ill, every evil that is besetting this world today.
   My friends, you need to know something about the devil instead of just forgetting and just saying, well, I don't anything about him. I have a booklet about him, just coming off the press now; 'Did God Create a Devil?', 'Did God Create a Devil?' I'd like to send you this booklet.
   So, until next time, Herbert W Armstrong, goodbye, friends.

{1} The Hebrew word for Lucifer is "Heylel". Lucifer is a Latin word translated for the Hebrew word "Heylel".

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Telecast Date: September 16, 1982
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