War in Heaven
And there was war in heaven: Michael 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.
- Revelation 12:7-8 (KJV)
Most people know there was "war in heaven" after which satan was cast out of Heaven. But when did this happen?
Here are a few possibilities:
- Before creation
- At the fall
- At the cross
- In the end times (in the future still)
In Revelation 12 we see there was "war in heaven" just after the 1260 year period (538-1798). That would place it more towards the end times.
And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. And there was war in heaven: Michael 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.
- Revelation 12:6-8 (KJV)
However it's important to note that Revelation 12 is not in chronological order.
At this point, it's also interesting to point out that Jesus saw satan fall from heaven, which means the "war in heaven" must haven happened before the cross.
And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.
- Luke 10:18 (KJV)
- Paradise Lost (John Milton) by Gustave Doré / Wikimedia Commons
I don't believe that "I beheld ..." was a prophetic statement.
Isaiah also thinks this event is in the past.
How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
- Isaiah 14:12-14 (KJV)
Some have argued that in the book of Job, God met with the "sons of God" (angels?) in heaven, and that satan was still there in heaven also.
Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them.
- Job 1:6 (KJV)
But in the Bible the sons of God don't normally refer to the angels, e.g. they are either called angels of God, messengers, stars, "men", etc.
The sons of God normally refer to believers.
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
- John 1:12-13 (KJV)
For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
- Galatians 3:26 (KJV)
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
- Romans 8:14 (KJV)
Also, the phrase "before the Lord" is used several times in the Bible, and it could be anywhere on earth (not necessarily in Heaven).
And they rose up in the morning early, and worshipped before the Lord, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the Lord remembered her.
- 1 Samuel 1:19 (KJV)
Satan clearly says that he came from the Earth.
And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
- Job 1:7 (KJV)
So I would argue, that at this point, satan was already cast from heaven. This makes sense, because why would God keep satan, a dangerous sinner, in Heaven (the most Holy place in the universe).
So when was satan cast from heaven? The Bible doesn't say exactly, but Ellen White says it was before creation.
After the earth was created, and the beasts upon it, the Father and Son carried out their purpose, which was designed before the fall of Satan, to make man in their own image.
- Ellen White, Signs of the Times, January 9, 1879, Art. B, par. 13
The correct order then is something like this:
- Plans to create our world
- Fall of satan (rebellion, war in heaven)
- Creation of our world
- Fall of Adam and Eve
When was the Fall of Adam and Eve?
Well, the Bible doesn't say that either, but Adam was 130 years old when he begat Seth, so the Fall must have taken place well before all that, given he also had to begat Cain and Abel, etc.
And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth.
- Genesis 5:3 (KJV)
Man's innocence was short lived, that's for sure.