Great Controversy Project – The Origin of Evil

Chapter Title:  The Origin of Evil

Favorite Quotation:

We fail to satisfactorily understand the great problem of evil from the fact that tradition and misinterpretation have obscured the teaching of the Bible concerning the character of God, the nature of His government, and the principles of His dealing with sin.  Our only definition of sin is that given in the word of God; it is “the transgression of the law,” it is the outworking of a principle at war with the great law of love which is the foundation of the divine government.  Sin originated with him (Lucifer) who, next to Christ, had been most honored of God and who stood highest in power and glory among the inhabitants of heaven.  Leaving his place in the immediate presence of God, Lucifer went forth to diffuse the spirit of discontent among the angels.  He urged that the angels should obey the dictates of their own will.  Satan’s rebellion was to be a lesson to the universe through all coming ages, a perpetual testimony to the nature and terrible results of sin. 

 Lessons I’ve Learned:

1.       How much the heavenly councils pleaded with Lucifer and gave Lucifer every chance to change his ways.  God, in His great mercy, bore long with Lucifer Again and again, he was offered pardon on condition of repentance and submission.  The Son of God presented before him the greatness, the goodness, and the justice of the Creator, and the sacred, unchanging nature of His Law.  God Himself had established the order of heaven; and in departing from it, Lucifer would dishonor his Maker, and bring ruin upon himself.

2.      We must be constantly on our guard so as not to be deceived.  Satan had been so highly honored, and all his acts were so clothed with mystery, that it was difficult to disclose to the angels the true nature of his work.

3.      The extent to which Lucifer went to deceive.  Satan had, at first, concealed his work under a specious profession of loyalty to God.  He claimed to be seeking to promote the honor of God, the stability of His Government, and the good of all the inhabitants of heaven.  While instilling discontent into the minds of the angels under him, he had artfully made it appear that he was seeking to remove dissatisfaction.  When he urged that changes be made in the order and laws of God’s government, it was under the pretense that these were necessary in order to preserve harmony in heaven.


1.      Satan’s rebellion was to be a lesson to the universe through all coming ages, a perpetual testimony to the nature and terrible results of sin.

2.      With one accord, Satan and his host threw the blame of their rebellion wholly upon Christ, declaring that if they had not been reproved, they would never have rebelled.

3.      The same rebellion that prompted rebellion in heaven still inspires rebellion on earth.

4.      In the final execution of the judgment it will be seen that no cause for sin exists.  The Judge of all the earth shall demand of Satan, “Why has thou rebelled against Me, and robbed Me of the subjects of My kingdom?”  The originator of evil can render no excuse.  Every mouth will be stopped, and all the hosts of rebellion will be speechless.

Discussion Questions:

1.      To what extend did Lucifer go to deceive and bring dishonor to God?

2.      How did covertness play into the downfall of Lucifer?

3.      Why do you think God was so patient with Lucifer and took so long to expose his deceitfulness?

4.      What examples have we seen whereby covertness brought down powerful individuals?

5.      What can we do as individuals to prepare ourselves to not be deceived by outside forces that lead us astray?

Family Worship Activity:

Discuss how Lucifer disobeyed God and the consequences of his disobedience and the effect it has had on our lives.  Have each child provide an example of what, in their mind, they think sinning is and give an example of when they may have sinned.  How did that sin have a negative impact on their lives?

Short Personal Biography:

I am Darlene Morford, a graduate of Nebraska Wesleyan University, Lincoln, NE, a mother of 2 daughters and grandmother to 4 grandchildren – which are the love and joy of my life.  Volunteer work includes being Clerk of the Richardson SDA Church along with volunteering at other organizations.

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