Lucifer: What do you believe in now?

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joemighty16

joemighty16

Hope is an optimist

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I came across this one quite accidently.

I studied Ancient Near Eastern religions at University and became quite a fan of the god Baal (not the Jewish or Christian version, but the actual one). A few days ago I remembered that in Diablo II's expansion you have to beat Lord Baal. I did a quick search on Baal on Answers.com and noted the reference that Baal is believed (today's popular belief) to be one of the princes of Hell. Then I noted Mephisto (short version of Mephistopheles), also one of Diablo's brothers and also considered a prince of Hell (first mentioned in the 17th cent. and better known in Goethe's Faust).

Then I thought, but what about Lucifer? There is no mention whatsoever to this name in the Bible...its just assumed that this was his name before he rebelled and were kicked out of heaven. His name even means "bringer of light". Satan is more of a definition. Lucifer's his name. (Footnote: In Hebrew, Satan merely means opposer. In Numbers 22:22ff the angel stood as "satan", against Balaam, prompting the donkey to speak).

Anyway, I did the search for Lucifer and got this article. In a nutshel, in Isaiah 14:12, a presumptious king of Babilon was about to have his ass kicked. He thought he was a star. Or more literally, son of the morning star, the planet Venus. In the 4th century this star was known as Lucifer in Latin, bringer of the light, the star before dawn. St. Jerome used this name when he translated the Hebrew into the Latin Vulgate. Unfortunately, because the king was so arrogant, and babilon was the evil city, this connotation stuck to the name. Lucifer, king of the evil city.

So? What do we do now? Does he exist, even though he's the product of a misunderstood passage?

Anyway, just for interest: Check out Satan (skip past the pop-artist), Ba'al and Ba'al (the latter's the original one), and Mephistopheles.

For me this is more facinating than shocking. I love these kind of revelations. Not because it had discredited anything, but just because there's an actual story behind what's been for so long accepted as givens.

Life is a game played by gods who are bored and who fight over the rules.

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I'm a fan of the study ancient culture and one of the most favorite topic I always googled was demonology.

During my recent surfing, I found out that satan and lucifer are definitly two different demons. Lucifer was a former high archangel next to God was banished from heaven. Satan was a demon who should be refered to as the opposite of God thus we could conclude that Satan exist with God.

Lucifer along with Paymon, Baal, Mephisto (Lucifer's rival and called the Light-Shunner), Xaphan (keeper of the furnace of hell), Baphomet, Leviathan, Legion, Mephisto, Lilith (former wife of adam the first man), Abaddon, Zagam, Verin (demon of impatience), Euronymous (prince of hell who upon corpses), and others ruled hell for eternity dragging helpless souls upon thier wake.

Here is a demon dictionary. It's not complete than answers.com but least it gives a brief synopsis:

http://www.fortunecity.co.uk/roswell/poltergeist/117/library/dictionary.html

  • Apr 15, 2006

joemighty16

joemighty16

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Well, I took a look at that site, and you'll have to forgive me, but that one didn't impress me. It's just a big list of any mythical (even fictional) characters that are in a Calvinistic sense on the wrong side. I mean, what's the Norse God Loki doing on that list anyway?

Leviathan and Behemoth? They are mythical creatures, such as, e.g. the basilisk. And since when was the agathodaimon Egyptian? Its Greek and it means good demon, such as the good angel on one shoulder (as opposed to the little demon, the kakodaimon). You can go on forever!

Anyway, after the middle ages people took mythical names and creatures and demonized them, i.e. turned them into bad guys and created levels such as princes, 1st level demons, lords and the like. Almost all of those demons can be taken back to at least to a Hebrew or Greek etymological origin.

But I admit that its interesting. Its just that so few can be taken seriously. Rest has as much validity as any character in any fantasy novel.

Life is a game played by gods who are bored and who fight over the rules.

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Good post! that's really food for thought - people really don't question religion enough. A lot of people simply follow the same religion as their families without any independent thought. Good on you guys!

  • Apr 19, 2006

Rosegirl18

Rosegirl18

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Lucifer was an angel who had a high standing in heaven, but when he became too arrogant he raised an army against God, who banished him from the Kingdom. Lucifer became evil and thus became Satan.

Lilith, the other wife of Adam, is fictional. There are no official references to her in both the Bible and Jewish religion.

  • Apr 19, 2006
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What I wonder is, if God is all knowing, wouldn't he know that Lucifer would disobey him, and thus would not create one who would go against his word. In a sense, he created something so he could banish it to hell...

  • Apr 19, 2006

Rosegirl18

Rosegirl18

^O^~ Rosegirl18 ~^O^

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God chose to give freedom of thought instead of making angels and humans serve him out of programmed will.

  • Apr 20, 2006

joemighty16

joemighty16

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Quote by Rosegirl18Lilith, the other wife of Adam, is fictional. There are no official references to her in both the Bible and Jewish religion.

You are using the same argument as I do (if there are no reference in the Bible, then it doesn't exist), yet you accept Lucifer (aka Satan) as fact. Even though my whole point was that Lucifer doesn't apear in the Bibel, but was in fact a 4th cent translation that has been wrongly used since.

There are in fact a single reference to Lilith in the Old Testament: Isaiah 34:14. There, the Hebrew word LYLYT is translated with "spirit of the night", or, in the King James version, "screech owl". Now, take in context that this pasage was written around 550 BC and that the tradition of Lilith haven't started evoloving by then.

Quote: Hebrew [hebrew text goes here] lilith, Akkadian lilitu are female Nisba adjectives from the Proto-Semitic root LYL "night", literally translating to nocturna "female night being/demon". Sayce (Hibbert Lectures, 145ff.), Fossey (La Magie Assyrienne, 37ff.) and others reject an etymology based on the root LYL and suggest the origin of lilit was as a storm demon; this view is supported by the cuneiform inscriptions quoted by these scholars. The association with "night" may still be due to early popular etymology. The corresponding Akkadian masculine lilu shows no Nisba suffix and compares to Sumerian (kiskil-)lilla.

Full article here.

In the Middel Ages however, influenced especially by Rabbanical writings, the tradition of Lilith being the first wife of Adam started evolving in the Church. But as you can see, the demon can be taken back to Sumerian mythology (c. 3000 BC).

Life is a game played by gods who are bored and who fight over the rules.

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DarkIngram

DarkIngram

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The Hebrew word translated "Lucifer" means "shining one." The Septuagint uses the Greek word that means "bringer of dawn." Hence, some translations render the original Hebrew "morning star" or "Daystar." But Jerome's Latin Vulgate uses "Lucifer" (light bearer), and this accounts for the appearance of that term in various versions of the Bible... :)

Who is this Lucifer? :o The expression "shining one," or "Lucifer," is found in what Isaiah prophetically commanded the Israelites to pronounce as a "proverbial saying against the king of Babylon." Thus, it is part of a saying primarily directed at the Babylonian dynasty. That the description "shining one" is given to a man and not to a spirit creature is further seen by the statement: "Down to Sheol you will be brought." Sheol is the common grave of mankind--not a place occupied by Satan the Devil. Moreover, those seeing Lucifer brought into this condition ask: "Is this the man that was agitating the earth?" Clearly, "Lucifer" refers to a human, not to a spirit creature. (Isaiah 14:4, 15, 16)

Why is such an eminent description given to the Babylonian dynasty? :\ We must realize that the king of Babylon was to be called the shining one only after his fall and in a taunting way. (Isaiah 14:3) Selfish pride prompted Babylon's kings to elevate themselves above those around them. So great was the arrogance of the dynasty that it is portrayed as bragging: "To the heavens I shall go up. Above the stars of God I shall lift up my throne, and I shall sit down upon the mountain of meeting, in the remotest parts of the north. . . . I shall make myself resemble the Most High."--Isaiah 14:13, 14

"The stars of God" are the kings of the royal line of David. (Numbers 24:17) From David onward, these "stars" ruled from Mount Zion. After Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem, the name Zion came to apply to the whole city. Under the Law covenant, all male Israelites were obliged to travel to Zion three times a year. Thus, it became "the mountain of meeting." By determining to subjugate the Judean kings and then remove them from that mountain, Nebuchadnezzar is declaring his intention to put himself above those "stars." Instead of giving Jehovah credit for the victory over them, he arrogantly puts himself in Jehovah's place. So it is after being cut down to the earth that the Babylonian dynasty is mockingly referred to as the "shining one."

The pride of the Babylonian rulers indeed reflected the attitude of "the god of this system of things"--Satan the Devil. (2 Corinthians 4:4) He too lusts for power and longs to place himself above Jehovah God. But Lucifer is not a name Scripturally given to Satan... :D

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Alright, if the person right above me said some of this already, sorry, I'm in a rush right now sorta so I've only skimmed the post right above, i read the others though.

Anyway, I wish I could find my bible to confirm these passages some of you have pointed out. But onward to what I know offhand.

First, the part about Baal and various other princes and such. Well, alot of them happen to come from Cannanite religions and cults, a region in which the hebrews inhabited as you may recall, from early on. Baal as well as other gods, creatures, and demons showed up from time to time in reference because of this link and because the isrealites knew about these religions from living near people and fighting against people of these faiths, and its also a big topic of Elija and Elisha as they go about disproving the prophets and magicians of Baal and proving the powers of the God of Isreal. Baal comes up later as well I believe when Jesus is accused of deriving his powers over demons from Baal.

I would like to point out however that your source for Baal being a prince of hell isn't really that credible. I havn't heard of the theology that says that, but maybe it is out there somewhere, I don't know, i just don't neccessarily take popular belief as referenced by answers.com to be much.

As for the no reference to lucifer and satan bit in the bible, and lack of connections and yada yada. Well, although this may be shocking to some, the Bible is not the entirty of religious works of the Judao-Christian traditions. There have been many books that never made it in, some for reasons of uncredibility, some for being lost here or there, some for whatever reason. There also is a rich tradition however that developed at the time and continues to this day on such theological concepts which derive their base from other sources then the bible, or interprete parts of the bible in one way or another as seen alongside traditions that are not in it. Its possible that this connection is in there.

However, there are a few places that a Satan-like being shows up. A few have been mentioned, but I don't think the book of Job has been. In Job, a being refered to as the opposer or something to that effect is seen, and challanges the faith of Job as what would seem like a bet with God, who speaks highly of how faithful Job is. This is a role that isn't so uncommon for the earlier Jewish tradition. Satan, as he is interpreted to be (similar tot he way the serpant is interpreted to be satan and various others in revelations and other books), is seen not neccessarily as the opposite of God, but as the one that tests the faith of the rightious, to ensure that they are faithful not because it is convenient and things are going well, but would be faithful even in hard times or the face of opposition. The name is not all that important, although it does say something to the nature of the being, since Lucifer is generally concidered the name of Satan before the fall, because he was supposed to be the one who reflected the light of God the best and was also the highest angel (has someone mentioned that?), and Satan is usually what he is called after the fall. And yes, the name may have been given from misunderstandings of translations, which is why its usually preferable to get translations directly from the original language and a credible manuscript if you can't read Hebrew and Greek, but it does fit with other ideas, which may have basis or may not, but which are not that important other than being an interesting concept which can be used to add to other more important aspects of the mythology and the religious tradition.

As for another reference, isn't there supposed to be some reference to that end of Satan or Lucifer in Revelations? I'm not sure, and I don't mean the beast which is talked about so much.


merged: 08-10-2006 ~ 09:47am
Oh, a few things I forgot to mention. Lilith may have come from some old tradition or religion, I'm not sure, but an explination I've heard was that she developed from Jewish Rabbis (as I think someone mentioned her comming from) as they were trying to figure out where the woman originally created WITH Adam came from, since there are two creation accounts, one with man and woman being created together, the other with Eve created after Adam, and so they were trying to work this out and came up with a previous woman who was bannished and whatnot. Really, if thats the source, which i kinda think there may be some other source they found referencing her but I have no knowledge to that effect, its a rather flawed one in my view. The two creation accounts don't need to agree, since, obviously, they don't. So in the first creation account (which interestingly enough was written alot later then the second) when God creats man and woman at the same time, it doesn't have to be interpreted as Adam and Eve, and if so its just a different account of them in which they are created at the same time. It doesn't really matter, the two stories have somewhat different messages, but really implement different styles, stages, and periods of theological thinking between the time periods and writers.

now as for the old question which seemed to come up "Why did God creat Lucifer if he knew he would be evil". Well I mentioned before some believed him to act as a tester for God, which was a valuable role. But aside from that, God loves all, and still loved Lucifer even knowing he would be evil. As well as he loves all His creation and His people, even if they are sinners and wicked, which is why He gives them a chance to live and come to know Him, even if he does know what will happen. There is also though an understanding of this which goes along with the fall story, job, and many other stories of prophets and even is incorporated into Gospels very strongly, the idea that we needed to fall from God, and needed sin, in order to grow closer to God and know His love and mercy. After all, how would we know His forgiveness if we never had need of it? And, as several poets have said, you can't tell one thing without its opposite. And really, as in many relationships between people, a strong problem between the two CAN lead to a strengthening and deepening of the relationship when it is finally mended and resolved, or, on a different instance, expirencing a great devestation and troubles with someone also helps to streagthen and deepen a relationship, be it friend, lover, or whatever.

So, thats your various little bits from me for now.

merged: 08-10-2006 ~ 09:53am
Alright, I couldn't resist adding this last bit. Since a few mentioned the King of Babilon being refered to as the mourning star (or star before dawn i think someone said but thats essentially the same thing I'm thinking, maybe you see that differently), its interesting to note that Mary (the virgin, or mother of God, so you know who i'm talking about) is also called the Morning Star for various reasons of her role in proceeding ind bringing the Son (or Sun, refering both to Jesus but for analogy sake).

  • Aug 09, 2006

joemighty16

joemighty16

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Quote by GauAlright, I couldn't resist adding this last bit. Since a few mentioned the King of Babilon being refered to as the mourning star (or star before dawn i think someone said but thats essentially the same thing I'm thinking, maybe you see that differently), its interesting to note that Mary (the virgin, or mother of God, so you know who i'm talking about) is also called the Morning Star for various reasons of her role in proceeding ind bringing the Son (or Sun, refering both to Jesus but for analogy sake).

Well, the Babylonian goddess Ishtar, the Caaninite goddess Anat, the Egypian goddess Isis, and of course the Roman goddess Venus, have all been identified with the morning star. Furthermore, Mary has been "deified in later Roman times by having her "merge" with the goddess Isis (a favorite by the Romans by then and therefore an attempt of making her more acceptable to the Romans in popular religion).

Concerning the rest of your thread: I am hugely impressed with how knowledgable you are on this topic and I'd have to agree with (almost?) everything you said. Just to make things clear, I personaly don't believe that Baal is a prince of hell. I believe that he is one of the most unjustly targeted and discredited gods of all time. Concerining the rest of the demon princes? I wouldn't say they were made up, but there function as an "evil" god or demon definatly were. Christian writers took existing gods or spirits and made them evil.

Concerning my sources that Baal is a prince of hell? Lets just say popular mythology. Not factual.

I agree that Answers (including any online dictionary) isn't that authoritive, but its the quickest and handiest source at hand. If you ask nicely I can dig up the most authoritive books you can dream of, but that wouldn't be any help since they wouldn't be online. Answers, as far as I'm concerned, is more than enough to use as a source here, but I wouldn't use it to write a school paper.

The whole topic was just that the name Lucifer originally never meant Overlord of Hell and all that is against God. Nor did Satan.

I use the Bible as an authoritive account mostly for the Christians since the apocryphal books hold even less authority. They were books that weren't accepted in the Biblical canon (I have some of them - nice reading!).

You said that you were in a hurry and therefore propably didn't read as thorough as you should have: I am undermining the Lucifer here as an translation usage that got out of hand. The original meaning changed form morning star (as a metaphor) to Overlord of Hell.

Otherwise I am still impressed with your knowledge on this topic.

Life is a game played by gods who are bored and who fight over the rules.

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Well, there is a distinction to be made between Lucifer and the "Overlord of Hell" which you do seem to be indicating. And yes, Lucifer was not originally that. Usually though, the name Lucifer is not given to the Overlord of Hell, it is given almost as if a different being, although the same, due to the one before the fall. Lucifer being the angelic one who was at the right hand of God and even was the holiest after God as he "reflected" the light of God the purest, like a mirror, hence his name. Generally after his rebellion against God and his fall, he is seen as being turned into a different being alltogether, which fits with the demonic nature he is associated with, as opposed to being angelic in hell. In fact, his name would no longer be Lucifer, since he no longer is of that light. This goes with his nature as a being of spirit, and older concepts of being and the power of a true name. Since as a being of spirit, if he changes from good to evil his entire being changes (unlike the understanding of a live human who can change between the two but remains in more of an indefinit state), and thus his "true" name changes as well, so that he, in being, is no longer Lucifer, but becomes Satan, or the Devil, or whatever you choose to call him, i'm not sure he even has an offical name although usually refered to as Satan, which actually you mentioned earlier as more of a definition, but that works because his name is supposed to indicate his role and define his being, now being an opposer, just as Lucifer also stated his role or his likeness as light. And, as the old concept of the true name was also believed to hold power of the being because it indicated their nature, it was important if the true named changed since that was a change in being as I mentioned. This is also applied to others as you may see: a demon once called out to Jesus saying "I know who you are, you are The Holy One of God", he did this hoping that knowing his true name might allow him some power over him, and as you saw what he said was not Jesus but what his nature was, this obviously didn't work and also was a show of how such things would not work against Jesus. Another instance, earlier, would be the name of God given to Moses. He wanted to know, as it was unknown, and the name indicated God's being "I AM WHO AM" (that is actually supposed to be capitalized, it pops up later when Jesus says "I AM" and it is capitalized in translations to show the connection to the name of God, also explaining why the Jews questioning him got so angry and say he made himself God), indicating he is the one that is being, the Creator. Interestingly, the Eathsea series uses this same concept of names and power and they explain it quite well, and just as they say, changing somethings true name (such as a rock) changes it entirely.

However, that was not really the point of the last post. Now, as for the christians taking everything and associating it, I think its pretty logical if you think of how religions were opporated up until then. Myths were mixed together before then with the greeks and romans all the time to incorporate old religions and traditions into new ones as lands were conquered. Later myths of Zeus had him as an adulturer all the time of sorts, which actually resulted from the primary gods of a conquered area being converted to Zeus, but keeping the partner the same, as a way of assimilating while retaning old tales, this was worked out in stories by having Zeus as a god going around having sex with everyone and fathing this people or that, or this god or that, or whatever. Now, when the christians finally come to power and acceptance, something similar happens, and more widespread as it is also strong with the northern tribes and vikings and such that convert after the fall of Rome. Once people convert, in order to retain some of their old understanding, so that they CAN understand this new religion, they started associating old gods and beings with their new ones. Actually, this probably happened before the conversion in many cases, as one tool of the appologist is to show a relationship between the religon of the people and the new religion being introduced. Its likely some of those on mission to convert saw the practices of the area, or the old gods, and said "Ah, you see, this one is like that, and this is kinda like that except its also this" and the mixing comes out of that. Thats how constantine understood things after all, he associated Jesus with the Appollo, and thus he decided worship should be done on Sunday instead of Saturday which the christians had been worshipping on till then. Rituals also assimilated like this, many rituals and practices (which in some areas are sadly fading away, and many protostant denominations did away with long before (as well as many eastern rites never picked up)) came from the pagan tribes. But, so the people still had a familiarity, and because this was how they knew to worship and the way they liked, they carried over some of the traditions (such as the Easter Vigil Ceramonies of Light, Christmas Trees, and Wreaths).

Myself, I think this makes sense and is actually good. Some say this shows how pagan christianity, especially Catholisism, really is and how hypocritical it is, but I see it diferently. They carried over the ways of worshipping they knew. Before, they did not know of the God of Isreal, and they created ways of worshipping gods as they saw fit and holy. When they came to see and believe that their old gods were false, this did not mean that their ways of worship were false, just directed the wrong way. So, they simply tweaked them a bit and carried the ones that they saw fit this new enlightened way they found and directed these rituals and ideas toward the God they now believed to be True, as if before they were simply reaching out and struggling to discover God, and creating all this in ignorance until they finally did find God and found where the pieces they made fit in the true context they sought.

This goes on today even, as churches continue to try and incorporate the culture around them into worship and into concideration, in order to help the people relate better, since a church should be of the people, and the most sincere way of worship is one somewhat customized to fit the feelings and spirit of the people.

So yes, things are thrown around from other religions and mixed into christianity, and some of that is lost and wrongly carried over possibly, but really, it can be seen to mostly be taking on a new entity in christianity, so old gods that are refered to as demons or as spirits are not supposed to be the same as the old ones, and, actually, if they are its a way of acknowledging the presence of these beings, but putting them in a new understanding, as not being gods but demons or otherwise that were confused for gods. Whatever the intention or result, things have been mixed together, and personally I find it interesting as it makes for a more encompassing line of mythology, tradition, and theology that connects well to so many others, and allows people like us to try and trace its course.

  • Aug 13, 2006

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