How could Satan access heaven in the Books of Job and the Revelation?

HOW COULD SATAN ACCESS HEAVEN IN THE BOOKS OF JOB AND THE REVELATION?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Some Bible commentators have professed great difficulty in understanding and explaining how Satan could have access to heaven in Job chapters 1 and 2, as well as in Revelation chapter 12. (I just read an article written by a theologian who was struggling here.) After all, does Scripture not say in Luke 10:18 that Satan was cast out of heaven long ago? Then, how is he cast out of heaven in Revelation chapter 12 too? How could he go into heaven in Job? Was Satan thrown out of heaven, or is he still awaiting that eviction? Let us search the Scriptures!

Notice the so-called “contradictory” verses:

  • Job 1:6-7: “[6] Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them. [7] 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 2:1-2: “[1] Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the LORD. [2] And the LORD said unto Satan, From whence comest thou? And Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.”
  • Luke 10:18: “And he [the Lord Jesus] said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.”
  • Revelation 12:7-9,12: “[7] And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, [8] And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. [9] And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him….. [12] Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.”

Job chapters 1 and 2, part of the Bible’s oldest Book, say that Satan has access to heaven. Luke 10:18, spoken during Jesus’ earthly ministry, centuries after Job, says the Lord Himself personally saw Satan fall from heaven. Years later, in the Book of the Revelation, the Apostle John wrote about a future day when Satan will be kicked out of heaven. We can understand why somebody would get confused here when reading the Bible. It is easy to see why people have trouble reconciling these verses. Let me assure you, friend, there is nothing wrong with the Bible. All of these verses are correct. We just have to be sure we look at the Bible as a whole, and not just snippets. The Bible should be understood as a timeline, verses arranged neatly; Scripture is not a group of jumbled verses all applicable at the same time.

The Bible speaks of “the third heaven” in 2 Corinthians 12:2. Therefore, we know that three heavens exist:

  1. The first heaven is what we would call Earth’s atmosphere—where birds and manmade aircraft fly. Genesis 1:20 says: “And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.”
  2. The second heaven is above it—the location of the sun, moon, planets, stars, et cetera. We know this region of creation as “outer space.” Genesis 1:14-17 says: “[14] And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: [15] And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. [16] And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. [17] And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth….”
  3. The third heaven, where God’s throne is, is situated above outer space, or outside of our universe. As noted earlier, we find this “third heaven” referenced in 2 Corinthians 12:2: “I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth; ) such an one caught up to the third heaven.”

SATAN’S PROGRESSIVE FALLING, FROM “TOP” TO “BOTTOM”

When the Bible says that Satan fell from heaven in Luke 10:18, that refers to his original fall in Isaiah 14:12-14 and Ezekiel 28:11-19. That was Lucifer’s eviction from the third heaven, the throne-room of God, because of his pride and failed attempt to usurp God’s authority (1 Timothy 3:6). Satan can never enter the third heaven again.

When Scripture says that Satan stood before God in Job chapters 1 and 2, this is not the third heaven as commonly assumed. It is not the throne-room of God as often taught. This would be the second heaven, or outer space. Isaiah 14:13 talks about this “mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.” Those “congregating” are angelic beings, and, according to the Book of Job, they assemble frequently. It is somewhere in the northern part of the universe, perhaps on some planet or other faraway celestial body, that the angels give an account to and/or report to God concerning their activities. God meets these spiritual beings here. It is evidently where Satan answers to God regarding his mischief on Earth.

When the Bible speaks in Revelation chapter 12 about Michael and his angels fighting against the Devil and his angels, and the Devil and his angels being cast out of heaven, that would be the second heaven (outer space). You will recall that this was where Satan was when he appeared in Job chapters 1 and 2. By the time of the Revelation—technically, halfway through the seven-year Tribulation—Satan is cast to Earth. This fall of Satan, from outer space to Earth, is yet future.

By the way, in Revelation 20:10, at the end of the Millennial Reign of Christ, Satan is tossed into the Lake of Fire, which is at the bottom of the universe, the farthest point from God’s throne in the third heaven (the third heaven being Satan’s original abode, as per Luke 18:10).

CONCLUSION

Rather than making all of these verses depict one fall from one heaven, or two falls from one heaven, we need to see that two heavens are involved and two falls are involved. It really is ridiculously simple, provided we ignore the theological speculations!

Once the perfect cherub Lucifer became prideful, he (now Satan) was thrown out of the third heaven, God’s throne-room (Luke 18:10). Satan currently operates in the second heaven, giving rise to the reality of “spiritual wickedness in high [heavenly] places” (Ephesians 6:12). One day, according to Revelation 12:7-12, Satan and his fallen angelic cohorts will be evicted from outer space (second heaven) and confined to the Earth (to wreak havoc during the final half of the seven-year Tribulation). We as members of the Church the Body of Christ assume those positions of heavenly government for God’s glory (Ephesians 1:3; Ephesians 1:9-10; Ephesians 2:6-7; Colossians 1:16-20; 2 Timothy 4:18)!

Lucifer’s fall from his original state to his eternal punishment is gradual, spanning thousands of years. That is, God did not immediately take Lucifer once he fell and cast him into the Lake of Fire. In fact, the Devil will not wind up in the Lake of Fire until Revelation chapter 20, which is still future even from today. Looking at the Bible timeline, from left to right—Satan falls from the third heaven (God’s throne-room) to the second heaven, from the second heaven (outer space) to the Earth, and ultimately, from Earth to the Lake of Fire.

The issue of Satan falling from heaven can be understood only from the dispensational perspective. Friend, if you attempt to make all these verses the same event, covering the same timeframe, you will reach an impasse you will ever be able to escape. However, if you see how they are different because they are in fact separate and distinct falls, thousands of years apart, and involving two different heavens, the Bible will become unbelievably clear concerning this topic!

Saints, (only if you can afford it!), please remember us in your monthly giving. You can donate securely here: https://www.paypal.me/ShawnBrasseaux, or email me at arcministries@gmail.com. Do not forget about Bible Q&A booklets for sale at https://arcgraceministries.org/in-print/booklets-bible-q-a/. Thanks to all who give to and pray for us! 🙂

Also see:
» Why does God let Satan exist?
» What are Satan’s current operations?
» Where in the Bible did God give Satan domain over the Earth?

2 responses to “How could Satan access heaven in the Books of Job and the Revelation?

  1. Pingback: The Mess We Call “the World!” | 333 Words of Grace

  2. Pingback: Why does Ephesians conclude with such a “dark” passage? | For What Saith the Scriptures?

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