Which happened first in Lucifer’s mind “being like the most High”; did the implementation of his plan of evil begin with the fall of man in the Garden first or when Satan and his fallen angels rebelled in Heaven?
Which happened first and how much time transpired between these two events?
My understanding is that the implementation of the plan of evil took place in the heavens first among the angelic realm and then upon the earth. The fact that the plan of evil was already in existence by the sixth day of creation is evident to me by the fact that when God created Adam both “good” and “evil” were in existence, and Adam was made aware of it through the presence of “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” (Interestingly enough I recently responded to someone else who asked me about the purpose of “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” And so since part of my response to him about the significance of the tree is fitting to your question as well,
I’ll copy that part to you here:
[» Re: your question regarding the purpose behind “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil,” and why the penalty of death in connection with eating of it.
« — Briefly put, my understanding is that “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” was put in the garden because of the existence of the Satanic Plan of Evil. Though in Genesis 1 and 2 God does not explain what had taken place in the angelic realm with Lucifer before Adam and the woman were created on the sixth day, (as He sees fit to describe later on in places like Ezekiel 28), He does set forth enough information to make it evident that something definitely did take place in that realm and that it was not good. In fact, the very fact that “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” was in the garden on the sixth day also makes it clear to me that not only was the “good” of all that God had done and purposed in the six days of creation in existence and evident to Adam, but so was “evil.” It was already in existence, and was a factor to be dealt with, and Adam was informed of its existence. However, though the “evil” was in existence and Adam knew it existed because of God’s statement about it, it was not yet personally evident to Adam. He hadn’t seen it, or seen any evidence of it. He just knew it existed because God said it did. In view of this, when God “put him in the garden of Eden to dress it,” He also told him “to keep it.” And that is “keep” in the sense of protect, guard, etc. Hence Adam also was informed that whatever was involved in the “evil,” it wasn’t in the garden yet; but it would endeavor to be there. «]
So primarily (though not exclusively) on the basis of this my understanding is that Satan implemented his plan of evil first among the angels of the heavenly realm and then upon the earth as set forth in Genesis 3. Regarding the time frame for all of this, and the time between the two events, briefly put my understanding is as follows: First of all I do not subscribe to the idea of a “gap” of substantial time, either great or not so great, between what is stated in Genesis 1:1 and what is stated in Genesis 1:2. Years ago I used to think that such a “gap” probably existed, but I have since changed my mind. So I do not think that Lucifer fell, implemented his plan of evil in heaven (or in heaven and on a pre-Genesis 1:2 earth) and then after a span of some undefined time God re-worked the earth after judging what Satan had done, etc., etc. In my present understanding I do not see any “gap,” nor the need for it. Instead my understanding is that from the second day of creation to the fourth day the things in connection with Lucifer’s sin and the concoction of his plan of evil took place. From the fourth day on the implementation of his plan of evil took place among the angelic realm, with the result that when God created Adam and his wife on the sixth day the plan of evil was already in existence and the earthly realm was set to be its next target as Satan sought to be “like the most High,” “possessor of heaven and earth.”
Likewise my understanding is that the implementation of the plan of evil on the earth also took place rapidly.
Especially in view of the dominion of the earth being given to Adam, in order for Satan to become the possessor of the earth, (and to do so with the least difficulty and greatest chance of success), he would need to move quickly. And I am persuaded that he did, with the event of Genesis 3 occurring most likely within just a day or so following the seventh day.
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