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“It wasn’t a total lie,” says the author of all untruths. “They didn’t really die when they ate the fruit. And God said they would. So… I told the truth. I just didn’t tell the whole truth. Yeah, I know there’s a difference between dying physically and dying spiritually, and all that… Heaven and Hell… So, I just left a few things for them to figure out later… Hey, it’s not my fault they fell for it. I didn’t make them choose wrong—they were perfectly capable of doing that all on their own.”

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, knowing good and evil.”  –  Genesis 3:1-5

What the serpent didn’t tell Eve, was how his desire to be like God became his undoing, his one grave error.

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When at one time his beauty stood unsurpassed by any and all in the Eternal domain, he no longer answered to his former title: Lucifer, the Day Star.

Where once his position ranked second only to the One Supreme Being, privileged to guard the Heavenly throne of God, honored to stand eternally in the presence of that same One, this former angelic creature was tossed out of Heaven to spend his limited days wandering across the earth, in search of other rebels.

You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.

You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering…

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 were perfect in your ways from the day you were created,

Till iniquity was found in you.  –  Ezekiel 28:12-15

Before his departure Satan convinced a group of angels to join the rebellion. In thousands of years roaming the continents, his work has always been that of slander and destruction. He spreads his lies to convince those disgruntled or foolish: There is no God but me. He pours out his grievances of God’s mistreatment of this former favored one. And always he seeks preeminence in the hearts of men and women and children of all races.

How you are fallen from Heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning…

For you have said in your heart:

I will ascend into heaven,

I will exalt my throne above the stars of God;

I will also sit on the mount of the congregation on the farthest side of the north;

I will ascend above the heights of the clouds,

I will be like the Most High.

Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, to the lowest depths of the Pit.  –  Isaiah 14:12-15

“Unfair!” the Adversary cried. “You are not just! There is no goodness or righteousness in you!” he screamed at the most holy God. “No one would ever choose to worship or love or serve a God such as you!”

Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. And the Lord said to Satan, “From where do you come?”

So Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.”

Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?”

So Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!”

Permission was granted to the Accuser to destroy everything Job held valuable, to bring such calamity on one man (and his wife) the world had not yet seen. Yet Satan greatly underestimated the strength of the bond between a believer and his God.

Then Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped. And he said: Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord. In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.

To be continued…