Did God Create
by Herbert W. Armstrong
The Bible pictures the whole world
under the sway of an invisible
devil. Where did he come from?
Did God create a devil to tempt us
and to lead us astray? Here are
the answers from God's Word!
S THERE a devil? Many people talk about the devil and Satan. Others scoff and say it's just superstition and imagination.
But is there devil? According to most Christians the Bible is supposed to teach that the devil is "the god of this world."
Did God create a devil? What does the Bible actually teach?
To find out let's look back to the very beginning. Open your Bible to Genesis 1:1. "In the beginning God. . . ." God was before all. The next word in the King James version is "created." "God created." He created the heaven and the earth.
But the very next verse says this: "The earth was without form, and void." The Hebrew words for "without form, and void" are tohu and bohu. Translated into English they mean chaotic, in confusion, waste, and empty.
When God created the heaven and the earth, did He create this earth originally in a state of confusion? Did He create it all topsy-turvy and chaotic?
World NOT Created in Chaos
We read in I Corinthians 14:33 that "God is NOT the author of
confusion." God is the author of peace. God is the author of
order and of law.
Why would He create the earth in disorder and then have
to straighten it out? That doesn't make sense! One scholar
points out that the Hebrew word for "created," bara, used in
Genesis 1:1, "implies that the creation was a perfect work."
That very word "created" implies a perfect and a beautiful
order and system, not chaos or confusion!
The book of Job shows God talking with Job about the
creation. God is saying to Job, "Where wast thou when I laid
the foundations of the earth?" There is the implication here
that Job had directed the building of some very great
edifice--such as the great pyramid of Giza in Egypt. Job was
righteous and somewhat proud of his accomplishments. God
was whittling him down to humility by a comparison of
God continues, "Who hath laid the measures thereof, if
thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it?
Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened [margin,
"sunk"]? or who laid the corner stone thereof; When the
morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted
for joy?" (Job 38:4-7.)
It is significant that the great pyramid is a building where
the corner stone is not laid in the foundation, but the final
stone to be laid--at the pinnacle. The "morning stars" are
light-(truth-) bringing angels and archangels, according to
Biblical interpretation of symbols. As creations of God, they
also are referred to as "all the sons of God." So this, too,
implies a perfect and glorious creation of the earth.
Then how did it become chaotic?
In Genesis 19:26, the same Hebrew word hayah is used
which is translated "was" in Genesis 1:2. (See also Genesis 2:7
and 9:15.) And there it is translated into the English word
"became." In the first three chapters of the Bible, and many
other places where you find the Hebrew word hayah, in
almost every case it denotes a condition that was different
from a former condition. In other words, the earth "BECAME"
chaotic. It had not always been that way.
The Earth BECAME Chaotic
Plainly the word "was" (hayah) here has the meaning of
"became." The Rotherham translation of Genesis 1:2, out of
the original Hebrew language, is this: "Now the earth HAD
> waste and empty." It hadn't always been that way.
In Jeremiah 4:23, Isaiah 34:11, and in other places in the
Bible, you find the same words, tohu and bohu, meaning
"chaotic" and "in confusion." In every case that condition is a
result of sin.
No Chaos Originally
Notice Isaiah 45:18. "Thus saith the Eternal that created the
heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he
hath established it, he created it not in vain." "In vain" is an
inappropriate translation. In your Bible, if you have the
marginal references, you will find in the margin a preferable
The original Hebrew word there is TOHU. This Hebrew
word is the identical word used in Genesis 1:2, meaning
"confusion," or "emptiness," or "waste"--a result of disorder,
a result of violation of law. In Isaiah 45:18 we have the plain
statement that God created the earth NOT tohu, that is, not in
confusion, not in disorder. But in Genesis 1:2, the earth was
(because it had become) chaotic and in confusion!
Then it became that way after it was created. Now, what
could have caused that confusion--that disorder? What sin
could have wrecked the earth and brought it into the
condition in which it was found in Genesis 1:2?
Life Before Adam?
Now, what was the sin then that caused this physical
destruction to the earth? It was not a sin caused by humanity,
because there had been no man on the earth until the sixth
day of that re-creation or that remaking. So it was not a sin of
man. Adam was the first man. We find in I Corinthians 15:45
that Adam is called the first man on this earth. In Genesis,
Eve is called the mother of all living human beings. There was
no other race prior to Adam and Eve.
So the sin which brought chaos was not caused by man.
And yet life must have populated the earth because a sin had
occurred on the earth that brought it into a condition of chaos
and confusion by breaking the laws of God.
What kind of life could it have been? It wasn't human
life. Then what kind of life had populated the earth prior to
Adam, prior to the week called "creation week"?
Next, let's turn to II Peter 2:4: "For if God spared not the
angels that sinned. . . ." Here is the sin of angels mentioned.
Sin of Angels!
Now read the next verse, "And spared not the old world,"
between Adam and Noah, "but saved Noah the eighth person,
a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the
world of the ungodly." There it mentions the sins from Adam
to Noah, and it mentions the physical destruction to the
earth as a result of the flood, a chaotic, physical condition
brought about on the earth by the sins of those men.
Was there a chaotic condition brought about on the earth
as a result of the sins of angels? The sin of the angels is
mentioned first, and it occurred first! There was a devil
already there in existence by the time Adam was created. So
the sin of the angels happened before the creation of man.
Now read II Peter 2:6. "Turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes [God] condemned them with an
overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after
should live ungodly."
Universal sin was in those two Canaanite cities. Physical
destruction came to the entire part of the surface of the earth
which those people occupied as a result of that sin. Then
didn't such a destruction come to the earth as a result of the
sins of the angels which occurred before Adam?
Now quickly turn over to Jude. In the sixth verse, you
read this: "And the angels which kept not their first estate,
but left their own habitation [they had a place where they
lived, a habitation, an estate, and they left it], he hath
reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the
judgment of the great day." Notice! It is the sinning angels
who are reserved in those chains under darkness, restrained
from light, restrained from truth until the judgment of the
Angels Possess the Earth!
How plain! They had an estate which they didn't keep. In
Hebrews 2:5 we read this: "For unto the angels hath God
not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak."
In other words, the World Tomorrow, the Kingdom of God,
will not be under subjection to angels. The present one is
under subjection of fallen angels. The demons, and the
devil who is their head, rule this present earth and sway its
inhabitants. The Bible everywhere indicates and affirms
that very fact.
How did they obtain their dominion? How did they
acquire their power? How did they maintain their control?
Where did the devil get the power to control and to lead and
to rule this world?
The devil is the leader of fallen angels, as you will find
in a number of places (John 12:31; Matt. 12:26; 25:41; Rev.
12:9). In II Corinthians 4:4 the devil is called "the god of
this world." He is the king or the prince of the evil world
that we live in today. Let's see something about the origin
of the devil.
Turn to Isaiah 14, beginning with verse 4, "Thou shalt
take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say,
How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!"
Here is a king of Babylon.
This account continues to tell how he had disrupted the
earth. He was an invader, a conqueror. He was a warmonger,
trying to take away from others and trying to acquire all he
could. He had just the opposite philosophy from that of God.
In other words, he had the philosophy of the devil.
He represented the devil. The king of Babylon was the
devil's instrument and tool.
Rebellion of Lucifer
This "king of Babylon" is the future ruler over the prophesied
"United States of Europe"--the coming resurrected "Holy
Roman Empire," described in prophecies of Revelation 17
and 18. It is a system described in Revelation 13 which was
given its power and seat by Satan.
Then in verse 12, the type--this human king of Babylon--lifts to the arch-antitype, Satan. Satan is to be removed
and bound after the Messiah's coming. Ezekiel's prophecy, to
be described later, reveals that he is the former archangel
So continue, verse 12.
"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). The
15th verse returns to the human king.
Notice, this former archangel had been placed as ruler
over the angels that sinned. He had a throne. He said he
would exalt his throne above the stars (angels) of God. It
already was exalted above the angels on earth--the angels
that sinned with him. Now he was going to exalt it over GOD'S
ANGELS in heaven. He was going to invade God's heaven,
knock God off the throne of the universe, and rule the whole
We learn much more about this cherub who became
Satan in Ezekiel 28. Here, beginning verse 1, the human
prince of Tyre is referred to, wealthy (chapter 27), surrounded
by perfect beauty, saying in his vain heart, "I am a God,"--"I
sit in the seat of God" (verse 2)--compare with II Thessalonians 2:3-4.
Compare also Ezekiel 27:7 with Revelation 18:16. All
these refer to the same system. However, Ezekiel 26 refers to
the ancient Tyre, as a forerunner or type of the present and
yet future system. Then, as in Isaiah 14, the human type lifts
to the satanic antitype in Ezekiel 28:12:
"Son of man, take up a lamentation [dirge] upon the king
of Tyrus [Tyre]. . . ." The whole prophecy of chapters 27 and
28 refers, not to the ruler of the ancient city of Tyre (as does
chapter 26), but to an important personage, in Satan's hand,
of our time--and immediate future--just before the coming
of the Messiah to remove Satan and bring in world peace.
Therefore the prophecy points to the END of this great
personage ruling spiritually over nations--as well as to
Satan's removal from swaying mankind on earth. Now,
beginning with verse 12, and on to the middle of verse 17, it
speaks of Satan himself.
So, continue: ". . . And say unto him, Thus saith the Lord
Eternal; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect
in beauty. Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every
precious stone was thy covering . . . the workmanship of thy
tabrets and of thy pipes [music] was prepared in thee in the
day that thou wast created."
A Created Being
Notice, this is not speaking of a human, but a CREATED being.
God would never say of a human that he seals up the sum
total of wisdom, perfection and beauty. Then who was this
great created being, originally?
"Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have
set thee so," answers God. In Exodus 25:17-20, you will find
the description of the very throne of God in heaven, from
which He rules the entire vast limitless universe. On this
throne are two cherubim--super archangels--whose wings
spread out and cover the throne. This personage, then, is the
former Lucifer, who was at the very throne of the universe,
thoroughly experienced in the Government of God over the
universe. Now he is pictured as being on earth. But he had
been, formerly, at the very throne of God, as the next words
". . . Thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou
hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.
Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast
created, till iniquity [lawlessness] wast found in thee."
Then God attributes to him violence, sin, corruption of
wisdom, perversion, saying he became proud--his heart lifted
up because of his beauty. Then, in verse 17, the immortal
spirit antitype descends again to the human type, who will be
a chief instrument in Satan's hands in the tremendous world
events just prior to, and leading to the coming of the Messiah
to establish the GOVERNMENT OF GOD over all earth's
This human personage, claiming to be God, sitting in his
sanctuary (verse 18) showing that he is God (II Thess. 2:3-4),
is to be destroyed by FIRE, brought to ashes (verse 18).
Compare with Revelation 19:20. In the latter, two human
personages, instruments of Satan, are pictured--one a civil
ruler over ten kings and their nations, the other called a great
"False Prophet" (Rev. 19:20). The prophecy of Isaiah 14
pictures the king of Babylon as the civil ruler.
Lucifer Becomes the Devil
So now, let's recapitulate thus far. The earth was a perfect
creation. The angels shouted for joy. From creation, it was
populated by angels.
There was a throne, on which sat Lucifer, a super
archangel, a cherub. He had been thoroughly experienced in
the administration of the Government of God, having been at
the very throne of God in heaven. God had placed Lucifer on
the throne on earth to administer THE GOVERNMENT OF GOD
over earth's angels.
There was happiness, peace, joy on earth. Of Lucifer, the
Moffatt translation reads: "From the day you were created,
you lived a perfect life, till you were discovered doing wrong"
(Ezek. 28:15). GOD DID NOT CREATE A DEVIL, but a beautiful,
perfect superangel. But God did give to His angels free moral
agency--minds that were free to think and reason--the right
of free choice.
Lucifer had allowed his beauty and perfection to fill him
with vanity--with SELF-glory, SELF-desire. He became envious
of God's power, resented authority over him. He plotted with
his angels to marshal them into an invading army, to invade
the heaven of God, to knock God off the throne of the
Lucifer was going to BE God. It is his deceptive sway over
the "Prince of Tyre" that will yet cause this personage to
claim that HE, a man, is God.
So Lucifer was no longer "LIGHT-Bringer" but now an
ADVERSARY--an aggressor, a competitor, an enemy. The name
Satan means "Adversary." His angels now became DEMONS.
How the Earth Became Chaotic
A third of the angels united with Satan in the rebellion. That
is what caused the chaos of this earth. The sin of angels
reached into the heavens and brought chaos on earth. What
the geologists and astronomers see is not an evolving universe,
but the wreckage of a titanic battle waged by spirits
throughout space‑‑a battle fought before man's creation.BECAME chaotic as
a result of rebellion. And in six days, God remade the earth,
reshaped, refashioned it, and created human beings upon it
The earth was created perfect. Then it
He gave Adam a chance to take the place of Satan the
devil, sit on earth's throne, and restore the Government of
God on earth. Adam rejected the tremendous opportunity,
yielded to Satan who to this day remains on earth's throne as
the god of this world. Christ, the second Adam, will soon come
to sit on that throne and restore the Government of God (Acts
3:19-21). Remember, Lucifer had been placed in rulership.
God placed the great cherub, Lucifer, to carry out His
government on the earth, but Lucifer refused to carry out
God's will, God's commands, God's government. He wanted to
substitute his own. So he disqualified himself.
Adam had the chance to supplant him. In the contest to
see if Adam would conquer, if he would obey God, he failed.
He obeyed the devil instead, and man became the property of
the devil, and the whole human race has been sold down the
river to the devil ever since.
Jesus Christ came 4,000 years later and He entered the
great contest‑‑the contest of the temptation on the Mount.
He REFUSED to obey the devil. He quoted scripture correctly.
He obeyed God.
Finally, He turned to the devil, and He gave Satan a
command. He said, "Get away from me," and the devil
From that time on, the successor of Satan has been
qualified to take over the rule of the earth. But Jesus went to
heaven for 1900 years. He is soon coming again, and when He
does, the devil will be DISPLACED. Christ will rule the earth,
God's Laws will be restored. Order and peace will come at
So God did NOT create a devil. He created a cherub,
Lucifer‑‑perfect in his ways, but with the power of free
choice‑‑and Lucifer transformed himself into a devil by
rebellion against the Government of God!