The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Evolution, The Flood, and God’s True Nature

As to God’s nonviolent nature, I would recommend anything by author, theologian, and criminal defense attorney Richard K. Murray. More specifically, “CSI” Jerusalem: Who Murdered Ananias and Sapphira?


As I understand it… the pre-existing presence or reality of “death” pre-fall is a logical no-brainer: it was only possible for that which ALREADY existed to THEN gain entrance into Adam’s world. I mention other logical implications of this over HERE.

Is there anyone who thinks that Eve sinned the very first sin in all of creation?

We know from Genesis 3:4 that the serpent sinned before Eve ever did by directly contradicting God. (“You will not surely die.”)

Does anyone believe that the serpent’s sin in Genesis 3:4 was the very first sin in all of creation?

Orthodoxy, Catholicism, and mainstream Protestantism all teach that the Devil and his fallen angels sinned long before the events in Genesis chapter 3.


davo, I think you may be confusing “sin” with “death.” Yes, Satan sinned first, but he is not physical, and so he did not die.

And Geoffrey, as to the devil sinning “long before the events in Genesis chapter 3,” I believe that the entire Creation (everything that is not the Trinity) was created…during Creation Week.

Satan’s fall into sin is described in Isaiah 14:12-14 and Ezekiel 28:12-18. While these two passages are referring to the kings of Babylon and Tyre, they also reference the spiritual power behind those kings, namely, Satan.

These passages describe why Satan fell, but they do not say when the fall occurred. We do know this: the angels were created before the earth (Job 38:4-7). Satan fell before he tempted Adam and Eve in the Garden (Genesis 3:1-14). So Satan’s fall must have occurred somewhere after the time the angels were created, and before he tempted Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.

Everything that God made, whether the earth, sky, seas, or heaven, was “very good.” This would have included the heaven of heavens and all the angels, including Lucifer (Satan). Ezekiel 28:15 says that “from the day” Satan was created, he was perfect in his ways until iniquity was found in him.

The Bible doesn’t give the exact time of the creation of Lucifer and the other angels; however, in Job 38:7, when God is confronting Job, He asks Job where he was when He was laying the foundation of the earth. God asks, “Who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” Are “morning stars” symbolic of the heavenly host of angelic beings? It is possible; recall that stars are often equated with angelic or heavenly beings, and some commentators suggest this refers to angels. If so, the creation of the angels was prior to Day 3 of the creation week.

At the time of the book of Job, Satan still had access to heaven and to the throne of God. “One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them. The LORD said to Satan, ’Where have you come from?’ Satan answered the LORD, ‘From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it’” (Job 1:6-7). I believe Satan’s access to heaven will be ended with the coming war in heaven (Rev. 12).


No, not really Hermano… Adam’s “sin” enabled the entrance of said pre-existing “death” into his world.

In terms of their sustenance via the garden that was “good for food” such food upon consumption went through biological demise, i.e., DEATH, in giving them life. The FACT that A & E could potentially “live forever” by continuing to eat of the “tree of lifepresupposes that death was naturally present, BUT eating of the Tree of Life counteracted this — had they gained access to the “tree of life” SIN would have been immortalised in man without remedy.

davo, I suppose you are right about spiritual “death” existing before the Fall—because of Satan’s sin. However, I would argue that Satan’s sin did not give entrance to physical death. As to traumatic physical death and destruction, we don’t see that before the sin of Adam and Eve. As spiritual beings in physical bodies, in a physical environment, it was Adam and Eve who gave entrance to physical death through their sin: “Cursed is the ground because of you.” Gen. 3:17. (So I honestly don’t think that the trees giving up their fruit to be eaten by man, prior to The Fall, would qualify as death in this regard.)

As you probably know from my other posts (for example, “Is God Violent, Or Nonviolent?”), and my ongoing references to the writings of Richard Murray, I am now convinced God was, is, and always will be, nonviolent. God sometimes gets blamed for Satan’s activities in the Bible—because the Scriptures, although divinely inspired, are only part of a never-ending, progressive revelation of the goodness of God.

So unlike Genesis editor Moses, I don’t believe it was God who cursed the ground (Gen. 5:29). Rather, the legalist Satan brought in the curse when man sinned. He is malignant and malicious, always looking to penetrate places where God’s protective hedge has been undermined by sin. He organizes and distributes violence, disaster, and death. Biologically, he has tweaked the genetic code to bring us everything from animals becoming carnivorous to Cystic Fibrosis to Zika. My understanding is that genetic variation is based on the variation in the alleles of genes in a gene pool. However, “genetic drift” leads to the loss of alleles. After Satan brought in his curse, (including damaging radiation), we start seeing the loss of alleles, as well as the shortening of life expectancies. Geologically, he is behind a fossil record of catastrophism, and so-called natural disasters. He is very powerful. He is “the god of this age” (2 Cor 4:4). For now, creation groans.

The Church must not ‘neglect its so great a salvation’ (Heb. 2:3) by passively allowing itself, or the rest of creation, to continue to be victimized by Satan. That death-dealer was defeated at the cross. Heb. 2:14. When the enemy’s added-on “dogma of curses” was nailed to that cross, the Devil was left disarmed. Col. 2:14. (God has never been about cursing, only blessing.) The process of officially evicting Satan begins when the Lamb starts breaking those seals on the title deed (Rev. 6). The coming violence is because Satan vehemently resists his eviction.

Since the time of Adam, the enemy has wanted people to see God as a moral accountant, not a loving, gracious Daddy. Man ate from the forbidden bipolar Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil: The Religion Tree; The Morality Tree. But Jesus is the unipolar Tree of Life.


qaz, as you know from reading Richard Murray’s “CSI” Jerusalem: Who Murdered Ananias and Sapphira?, the case can be made that it was not God, but Satan (who has the power of death, not God, Hebrews 2:14), who struck down Ananias and Sapphira.

As to trying to negate that Jesus used a whip to drive out the moneychangers (instead of just the animals), please see Murray’s
Did Jesus endorse violence by is cleansing of the temple and his cursing of the fig tree?

Probably there are very few divine violence Scriptures that haven’t been addressed by some nonviolence advocate, somewhere. (And that would not be me.) The overarching principles for reading divine violence passages (and all the Bible, for that matter) are

  1. the Jesus Hermeneutic: *“Love your enemies” *Matthew 5:44, and
  2. Seeing the Scriptures as a progressive revelation received by imperfect human mediators, as per Professor C.S. Cowles


Since you believe the days in Genesis 1 to be 24 hours each, then therefore the angels were all created at most 120 hours before Adam was created, and some of the angels fell at most 120 hours before Adam was created. Is that a fair conclusion?

If so, is that the majority view amongst Young Earth Creationists? That before day one of Genesis 1, literally nothing existed except for the Trinity? It was my impression that YECs thought that the angelic world was quite a bit older than that, but perhaps my impression is mistaken.

Yes, Geoffrey, that is the right conclusion. But as to the majority view among young earth creationists regarding the fall of Satan, I honestly don’t know.

I’m certainly not an expert in heremeneutics, but I do wonder if we try to get more out of Genesis 1-3 than it was designed to teach. OTOH, speculation is fun as long as we don’t hang too much weight on it, and remember to put our trust in that which is very clear.

And it seems that instead of saying “God created” some could interpret that to mean “The Trinity created” or in other words, that the word ‘God’ could be replaced with “Trinity”. I think that is very cumbersome.
“For the trinity so loved the world” “And behold, an angel from the Trinity” “for the trinity will cover you with their wings” (of course no one is actually saying that)
My point being that the word ‘God’ is talking about the Father, and is not replaceable with the word ‘trinity’.

edited to make more sense :slight_smile:

Yes Dave, I agree. I think we read more into the Bible than what it is actually trying to tell us. To say that man’s sin caused all to biologically break down and that this is why we grow old and physically die seems a bit far fetched. We were not made to physically live forever in our present form and neither was anything else. If this was not so, then how would the earth give way to new life coming into it? If the world did not move and change, it would be nothing but a still framed picture. To me, God is a Spirit who moves over the heavens and earth continually forming and reforming all that is in them.

I agree. My reference to the Trinity was only to distinguish it (all three persons of the Godhead) from the creation.

And to reiterate: Lucifer was part of Creation; therefore I can’t find a good reason not to believe that he too was created (and, like man, quickly fell thereafter)—during the Creation Week.

We know that none of this took God by surprise. But He knew that without some degree of free will, we can’t freely choose to love Him. (And I believe that everyone, whether living or dead, sooner or later, will freely choose to receive the gift of Jesus. God is a consuming fire–of love. Remember Daniel’s friends in that fiery furnace: The Son of Man was there with them, and when they came out, only their bondage had been burned off!)

But theoretically, why not? There was no death or disease before man sinned. Satan, who has the power of death (Hebrews 2:14), who is the “god” of this world, brought in death through man’s sin—not God. And not only physical death, but sickness, poverty, natural disasters, and everything opposed to life.

Again, God knew this would happen, even though He didn’t will man to sin. (And He knew He would then ‘work things together for good.’)

Death is being purged out in stages, reversing Satan’s curses. We get a hint of this through prophecies regarding the coming ‘Millennial Age’:

Finally, “the last enemy to be destroyed is death.” 1 Cor. 15:26. It would follow that after death is completely destroyed, all people will be immortal. And we know that the physical creation (“the lesser reality”), will be merged into heaven (“the greater reality”):

All people will be immortal—as Adam and Eve were before they sinned; however…is it only members of the Bride of the Lamb who will receive glorified, spiritual bodies, *or everyone? *I don’t pretend to know, but as you indicate, it’s fun to speculate.

The universe is a big place; will nations continue forever? I don’t know, but, *“Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end.” *Isaiah 9:7.


Hermano, no, I do not believe that man has that great of power over God’s design of the earth and all that is in it. The earth hangs in a balance and it works on a continual basis to restore and keep it in it’s proper balance. To me, Satan is but the workings of men who do not believe in a higher power. So I can agree with you on the fact that they are quite the legalists. Environmentalists will have us believe that man is but a blight on earth and that we are destroying it with our every move. I don’t buy it. It is not as fragile as they make it out to be To me, we are but specks of sand and this earth is capable of shaking us off as the dust on one’s feet. When I hear the cry of global warming, or is it global climate change now, ( sorry I can’t seem to keep track) I would say that this is basically an excuse to lay down more laws. As Colossians 2:20-22 says, “Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations-“Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle”, which all concern things which perish with the using-according to the commandments and doctrines of men?” It is said that God turns wastelands into habitable places and vice versa. So, the way I see it , maybe a little global warming is necessary to open up more land. I hate to admit it(no offense to anyone) but the thought of California being submerged under water doesn’t sound all that bad either. :laughing: To me, this is all a part of the great circle of life. We have only been given so much time here. And when that time is up, we must move on to the bigger and better things that God has in store or us, thus making way for new life and letting them have their turn.

I too am a skeptic of global warming—or at least the idea that it’s mostly man-made. And although there is a lot of room for improvement for the worst offending countries who pollute, I too am concerned about governments gobbling up more control in the name of environmentalism.

But here, I must disagree. If you believe in angels, you know that they are spirit beings who are smart, powerful, and immortal. For example, like God, I would imagine that for angels all human science, technology, and languages are child’s play. I think they were imbued with far more power and intelligence than their human brethren.

So Satan, the fallen angel, is more intelligent, informed, and powerful than we can imagine. And he doesn’t sleep. But he was defeated at the cross; and he was disarmed of his weapons. So we must recognize him and his strategies, and enforce the victory of Jesus.

Once again, I recommend my friend Richard Murray. He has an enlightening article, Is Satan Involved In Every Evil Occurrence?

Short answer: YES. But please do me the favor of reading and considering the points of this article before you disagree.


Hermano, I read the article you posted, however I do not believe in Satan, devils, angels, etc. as anything other than human beings and their workings. Colossians 2:18 says this: “Let no one defraud you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen.” As Jesus said, evil comes from the heart of man, and there are many people who still practice it and gain a following through deceit and ignorance.

I will read Murray’s article!

First though - musn’t we agree that satan has limited power, limited knowledge, is bound to one location at a time and is thus not omnipresent?
Giving any ground on those things would it seems to me, be disastrous.

Yes indeed. Satan is merely a fallen angel. Nothing more. He is not some sort of “evil God”.

Good Catholic J. R. R. Tolkien had one of his elven heroes almost kill Satan in one-on-one combat.

I am confident that Satan cannot read minds (as all too many seem to assume). Frankly, I doubt that Satan is even aware of your existence as an individual. That is, I do not doubt he knows about how many people there are in the world (just as does anyone with access to an encyclopedia), but if he were asked, “Could you point Andrew McGalliger out in a crowd?”, Satan would have to say no.

Dave, yes I agree that evil people have limited power and knowledge, however the problem is that we join in with them via our own sin or ignorance, increasing their power, growth and spread.

Geoffrey, If I am understanding you correctly, I can agree that the better definition of Satan would be a gathering of individuals operating as one “body” in sin. Thus it is a beast of our own making.

I affirm that Satan is a literal person who is an angel who fell into sin.

And that is all he is.

He is very, very limited in terms of power, knowledge, and presence.

All too many people imagine Satan as a quasi-equal with God, envisioning Satan as individually tempting each and every person every day, and even being privy to the thoughts each of us think. That’s all nonsense.

Satan is more like a super-villain in a comic book than that.