Some brethren in the Metro Manila area believe that Christ emptied himself of His divinity from the time of conception in 1 A.D. to 33 A.D. at His
crucifixion. Their contention is based on the term “emptied himself” in Philippians 2:7 and the lowly description in Isaiah 53 of the Messiah among others. This view is contrary to scriptures as we have shown in previous articles. In this article we want to ask if in the incarnation of Lucifer who turned Satan, he also emptied himself of his angelhood or devilhood.
We believe that Lucifer was one of the chief angels. He and the angelic host were part of that invisible dominions, powers, thrones and authorities
described in Colossians 1:15-16 created by the Lord Jesus Christ before the creation in Genesis 1:1. But his ambition made him a rebel and a sinner. He became Satan because he chose to oppose God. Being the instigator and chief of a coup d’tat mounted against Yahweh, it is inferred that he lied to the angels who followed him. The angels didn’t keep their proper domain, did not keep their habitation. They improperly occupied other realms. See Jude 6.
Then Satan entered the physical creation of God where everything was good. Originally Satan was a good angel, a spirit persona. After he rebelled against Yahweh, after he became Satan he remained as a spirit being. His nature, his original essence, his substance is that of an angel. Ang kanyang likas na kalagayan ay sa antas ng anghel. Mas mababa kaysa sa essence ng tunay na Diyos si Yahweh.
Good angel or bad angel, Satan had the same essence or substance of an angel. It was the level of angels. Lower than the substance of the true God. But higher than the essence of human beings.
Pero ang espiritung anghel na mabuti ay naging masamang anghel at naging pisikal. Ang masamang anghel na ito ay nagkatawang ahas. Ahas na pisikal na may buto’t laman. At dahil sa kanyang panlilinlang kay Eva, ang anghel na ito ay naragdagan pa lalo ang kanyang kaparusahan ayon sa Genesis. He was cursed. See Genesis 3:14-15. Nawala ba ang kanyang pagka-anghel noong naging ahas na buto’t laman? Hindi. Nawala ba ang kanyang pagka-demonio noong naging buto’t laman? Hindi. Nawala ba ang kanyang likas na kalagayan noong naging ahas na buto’t laman? Hindi. Did he lay aside his satanhood when he took the form of a snake? Hindi.
Was there an aspect of his angelhood or his devilhood that he laid aside or emptied himself of when he became a snake of flesh and bones? May be he laid aside his glory because angels are naturally of bright light. Satan can appear as an angel of light says Apostle Paul in 2 Cor 11:14. Good angels naturally appear in a glorious form. When human eyes behold this angelic glory it is “like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow.” See Matt. 28:3. Good angels could also easily reduce the intensity of their glorious appearance for the sake of man.
Yahweh who is true God appeared to Abraham and Sarah as an ordinary, non-glorious man in Genesis 18:1-2. Yahweh’s two companions were angels who appeared as non-glorious man. Christ took the form of a rock that followed the Israelites providing water to the people for a period of 40 years, a form less glorious than human. This becoming less glorious is found in Exodus 17; Numbers 20; and 1 Corinthians 10:4. God being powerful can become what He wants to become. But his divinity, His deity will never be laid aside. It is the glorious appearance that could be diminished or increased as desired.
In the case of our Lord Jesus, he did not empty himself of his deity. It was his divine glory that he laid aside and took the form of a human being so that he could tabernacle with men. But during his sojourn on earth he put it on record in John 17:5 that it is his divine glory that he laid aside. That glory has been resumed as we may find in Daniel 7:9-14 and Revelation chapters 4, 5 and 22.
Comments and observations are welcomed.
– Eusebio Tanicala (6.15.10)