Life on Mars, Part 3 – Before Adam

As we covered in the last post on this topic, Genesis 1:1-2 can be legitimately translated this way:

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.  But the earth had become a desolation and a chaotic ruin; and darkness covered the face of the deep.

This is the translation that fits both the language and the complete revelation of God’s word (if we trust the Bible to interpret itself as opposed to filling it with our own ideas).  And we saw from Scripture that this state of desolation and ruin (Hebrew: tohu and bohu) results from God’s wrath upon sin.

But Adam has not yet been created.  Genesis proceeds with the account of the re-creation of the earth (Psalm 104:30, “You send forth Your Spirit, they are created; and You renew the face of the earth”), and on the sixth day of that creation, Adam and Eve are brought into existence.  We know that it is due to the sin of Adam that death entered into the world we now live in (Romans 5:12-14).  If the creation was devastated before Adam due to sin, whose sin would that be?

The answer lies in the fact that Adam and Eve were not the only sentient (thinking) beings in the Garden of Eden, for soon after their creation we are introduced to the serpent:

Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made.  And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?”

And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.'”

Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.  For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Genesis 3:1-5

The “serpent of old” is Satan the devil (Rev. 12:9).  And clearly, though he is only now introduced to us, he is already an evil and sinning creature, lying to and deceiving Eve (2 Corinthians 11:3).  Being already in this state, his sin precedes Adam and Eve’s.  And in this, he is our best candidate for the sin resulting in the destruction of the earth.

Does the Bible say anything about earth’s history before Adam?  Anything at all from which we can put together more of the picture?  For while we should respect all that the Bible says, we should respect where it is silent, as well — and if the Bible says nothing of the time between Genesis 1:1 & Genesis 1:2, then neither should we.  However, it does speak a little of this time, and rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15) we will see some of that pre-Adamic history come to life in its pages.

Note that Genesis does not speak of the creation of the angels, though they certainly existed.  Genesis 3:24 speaks of cherubim, a kind of angel, being placed east of the Garden of Eden to prevent mankind from returning to the Tree of Life and living forever in his sinful state.  Job 38:6-7 tells us that the angels (the “morning stars” and “sons of God”) were present when the very foundation, the cornerstone of the earth was laid — indeed, it says that they sang and shouted for joy at the event!  These spirit beings are God’s ministers (Hebrews 1:7, Psalm 104:4) meant to serve “those who will inherit salvation” (Hebrews 1:14) — mankind.

Among these angelic beings, created before the foundation of the world was laid was a being called Lucifer.  And he was magnificent — until sin was found in him…  His tale is told dramatically in two places in prophecy: Ezekiel 28 and Isaiah 14.  In both places, a prophecy is being spoken about an earthly ruler, but included in the prophecy are words that can fit no earthly ruler — words that can only be meant for the spiritual power behind the throne (cf. Daniel 10).  Let us look, first, at Ezekiel 28:

Son of man, take up a lamentation for the king of Tyre, and say to him, “Thus says the Lord GOD:

‘You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.  You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: the sardius, topaz, and diamond, beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold.  The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created.

‘You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; you were on the holy mountain of God; you walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones.  You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you.

‘By the abundance of your trading you became filled with violence within, and you sinned; therefore I cast you as a profane thing out of the mountain of God; and I destroyed you, O covering cherub, from the midst of the fiery stones.'”

Ezekiel 28:12-16

“You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you.”  I Timothy 3:6 tells us that pride brought the devil his condemnation.  We read more details in Isaiah 14:

How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations!

For you have said in your heart:

“I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation on the farthest sides of the north;

“I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.”

Isaiah 14:12-14

In his pride and arrogance, we see Lucifer — who would become Satan, or the Adversary — decide in the pride of his heart that he could exalt his throne above the stars of God, to be “like the Most High.”  And as there can be only one “Most High” it must be clear that Lucifer’s — Satan’s — intention was to take over the throne of God!  Scripture even indicates that as many as one-third of the angels followed him in this rebellion (Revelation 12:4).  Daniel 10 depicts spirit beings resisting the angelic servants of God, and 2 Peter 2:4 clearly states that “God did not spare the angels who sinned…”  Jude 6 mentions them, as well.

But let’s not overlook some key details that can give us more information.  When Jude 6 mentions these sinning angels, it states: “And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode…”  What was their proper domain?  It would be easy to assume this was heaven, but don’t be so quick to assume!  The NIV translates the words “proper domain” as “positions of authority” and Young’s Literal Translation puts it as their “own principality.”  The word that the NKJV translates “domain” carries with it the feel of a location in which one possesses an assignment of responsibility and authority, and more than a simple “home.”

Where had the principality of these angels been before their rebellion?  Where were they exercising authority before their leader, Satan, instilled within them pride and ambition?  It was not heaven, as Isaiah 14:13 makes clear when it says that Lucifer declared he would “ascend into heaven.”  So he must have been below heaven, else he would not need to ascend.  And in verse 14 we get a crucial clue as to the location of his principality: “I will ascend above the heights of the clouds…”  Such a statement places one below the clouds — thus, on the earth.

Could it be that Satan the devil — before his rebellion and his sin — and his pre-fallen angels possessed authority over the earth in some way?  Could it be that the earth was the principality they ruled, and the abode which they left to rebel against the government of God?  That is the clearest implication of the Scriptures we have read.  And it makes sense of other verses, as well!

That Satan has authority as a ruler in some great sense is clear from Scripture.  For instance, in Jude 8-9 Michael the archangel is seen as respecting the authority of Satan as one would a peer.  But consider that Paul often speaks of Satan as if he has a position of authority over this world, calling him the “god of this age” in 2 Corinthians 4:4, and the “prince of the power of the air” in Ephesians 2:2.  Jesus, Himself, refers to Satan as the “ruler of this world” (John 12:31, 14:30, 16:11).  Then consider, too, that in his temptation of Christ when he offers the Lord all the kingdoms of the world, the devil says, “All this authority I will give you, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.”  GOD is ultimately the giver of authority (cf. Romans 13:1; Daniel 2:21, 4:32; John 19:11, et al.), and Satan could NOT be the ruler of this world had God not given him the authority.  And Ezekiel 28:14-15 makes it clear that Satan was “established” or “ordained” in authority by God while he was still the perfect Lucifer and before iniquity was found in him.

There are additional verses we could look at but let’s stop here and look at the picture thus painted by the complete revelation of Scripture…

Sometime in the distant past — how long is not revealed, but longer than 6,000 years ago — the angels were created.  Among them was a beautiful and glorious being called Lucifer.  These angels sang and shouted for joy at the founding of the earth, and a number of them, perhaps one-third, were placed on this planet to accomplish God’s purpose.  The earth was placed under their authority and jurisdiction as a principality, and they were to act as God’s stewards and servants on behalf of those who would ultimately inherit all things: mankind.  However, Lucifer, who was their leader, became filled with pride.  His sin spread through many if not all under his influence, and with them he launched a rebellious assault on God’s throne in heaven.  This being — now called Satan — met with defeat, as do all those foolish enough to rebel against the Most High, and he and his minions were cast out of heaven, fallen creatures.  The end result was not a Satan crowned ruler of all the universe.  Rather, it was a devastating defeat of cosmic proportions, and the land in which these angels — now demons — had conceived and given birth to their sin lay in ruins.  The world that had been under their care, intended as the future home of man, had become tohu and bohu — desolation and a chaotic ruin — as a result of their sin.

God’s purpose remains, however, and rather than being the end of the story, Genesis 1:2 is the beginning.  With this background we are finally equipped: What does the Bible say, if anything, about life on Mars — past, present, or future?  (You probably thought I had completely forgotten about Mars, huh?)  Let’s take a look at these prospects next time.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
All four posts in this series:

15 thoughts on “Life on Mars, Part 3 – Before Adam

  1. GS

    if we trust the Bible to interpret itself as opposed to filling it with our own ideas

    I’ve often wondered about this “letting the Bible interpret itself.” How does it do this? For example, when we read stuff in Revelation and then say, as COGs do, that this represents a ten nation grouping of modern European nations, I’m confused. How could the Bible interpreting the Bible arrive at this conclusion? Neither “nation” nor “Europe” is found anywhere in the passage in question, and “Europe,” of course, isn’t found anywhere in the Bible.

    I think this nonsense about the self-interpreting Bibles arises from basic ignorance about reading and interpreting and what is exactly going on there.

  2. Thanks for your comment, and I understand your point of view. We do strive to let the Bible interpret itself. That is, rather than bring pre-conceived notions to the text (“we all go to heaven when we die,” “God is a trinity,” etc.), we strive to let the Bible say as much as possible on a topic before we draw any conclusions. This has proven especially profitable for understanding, since the Bible says a great deal more than most give it credit for.

    It is an approach that is all the more necessary for prophecy. The apostle Peter gives us a vital principle in this regard, which he describes as a “first” thing: “…knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (1 Peter 1:20-21). This points us to God as the only reliable source for understanding prophecy, and it is through His word that He has chosen to reveal Himself. The best approach one can take is to let the Bible interpret itself — and in doing this, we consider the whole Bible, and every word that proceeds from the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4; Luke 4:4).

    Sometimes this approach leads us to quite specific conclusions about prophecy (such as the identification of the Beast of Revelation with a modern, resurrected Roman Empire in Europe, covered thoroughly in our booklet) and greatly narrows (though does not fully eliminate) the range of related speculation. Other times it does not, and the room for speculation is greater (e.g., the fact of a place of safety in the end times for part of God’s church, but much speculation as to where it might be, such as Petra).

    That is not to say that sometimes “private interpretation” is not mistakenly substituted for “Biblical self-interpretation.” Avoiding influence from the carnal nature that cuts us off from the mind of God (1 Cor. 2:13; Romans 8:7) is always a challenge. Allowing the excitement of a “new understanding” and a “tantalizing possibility” to overwhelm the “interpreter” would be an example of this. On the other end of the spectrum, writing it all off as nonsense would be another.

    Allowing the Bible to speak fully on the concepts it brings up is the most rational way to go (assuming you believe in a fully and accurately inspired Bible as the revelation of the mind of God to man), and is, indeed, the approach to which the Bible, itself, directs us. It is the only approach which works and works consistently – a lesson we have learned both through our successes and our mistakes. And, trembling before His word (Isaiah 66:2) — faulty humans though we are — it is the approach we will continue to take. Before God, we can take no other.

  3. Thinker

    The question that I have about Satan and the demons is why were only possibly one-third of the angels here on the earth? Where were the other two-thirds? Wouldn’t it be a better theory if they ALL were on the earth and one-third of them followed Satan?
    It doesn’t seem that just about every angel or all of them would fall into sin. It is like saying ALL of former Worldwide Church members follwed Joseph Tkach. Mabe two-thirds of them were loyal to God and one third weren’t but they were all in the same place. Just some thoughts.

  4. Howdy, “Thinker,” and thanks for your thoughts!

    I agree that the number of angels originally on the earth might not have been exactly one-third of the total, which is why I placed that crucial “perhaps” in that sentence. We do not know the precise number (or proportion) of angels on the earth, only that Scripture seems to indicate that the proportion of those who followed Satan in his rebellion was one-third.

  5. answer seeker

    Hello, just wanting to know if you could give me your incite on something?I am writing a book about the time before Adam and wanted to know if it would be against God if I did?I would like to go into it more but I don’t want to where everyone can see it.It is fiction and fantasy but has historical truths as well.Please let me know your take on it.Also I’m interested on your take on the mars civilization and it’s significance to pre- Adam time as well as the possible home for the angelic beings?The relation to the Egypt pyramids and the two-faced sphinx.I anxiously await your reply.

  6. Howdy, Answer Seeker! Thanks for your comment, and I really apologize for the delay in its appearance here on the website. I have been a bit preoccupied over the last couple of days!

    First let me say that I do not believe that there has ever been a “Mars civilization.” I believe that man did not exist before Adam and that man has only existed on the earth. I also believe that other than heavenly beings such as angels, man is the only intelligent being that God the Father and Jesus Christ ever created, which precludes any sort of extraterrestrial civilization, ancient or current.

    That would limit any sort of pre-Adamic fiction to tales of angelic beings, and I tend to shy away from that sort of thing. The real spirit realm is rather awesome, and as much fun as it can be to build up a fictional fantasy world around it, I am a bit cautious about allowing fantasy and fiction cloud my mind and prevent a view based on the truth (I suppose I’m not much of a risk taker!). God gives us very few details about that realm, and I think it is wise to follow His lead and not to focus on it in greater detail than He has provided. Fallen spirits can be deceptive (2 Cor. 11:14) and I have no desire to give them any more attention than they deserve.

    Also, considering that the “historical truths” concerning the time before Adam are incredibly scarce and that the Bible is the only trustworthy source for such things, I would think that you wouldn’t have much to work with!

    (By the way, if you would like to subscribe to our magazine or look further at our materials, please feel free. Our website is http://www.tomorrowsworld.com, and any literature there — including our bi-monthly subscription magazine — can be ordered absolutely free. Sometimes we discuss the destiny of man in the universe, as well as the origins of the world we live in. You might peruse our website a bit and see if you think any of our material would be of interest to you.)

    Thanks for writing, and I hope this comment clarifies things a bit for you!

    Best regards,
    Wallace Smith

  7. michael buis

    I have been watching tomorrows world with interest and subscribing tomorrows world.
    I started reading the new testament and revelations in particular with intersest and
    have gained a greater understanding and respect for god and the ten commandments
    I am becoming increasingly amazed not only at my own belief in it all but as the years go by the incredible accuracy of it all.

    I find it difficult to fully change especially with things like the sabbath when most of society seems to be geared for Sunday, and habitually I have mostly relaxed on a Sunday.

    I have a questions about creation: Was the universe and earth created well before man and woman and does this explain about dinosours etc In this regard where in the bible does it deteremine the six thousand year time frame and when it commenced.

    I have an addictive obssesive personality and become fearful sometimes when I see the truth of what is about to occurr. I wish to coninue with my new journey, however the fear blocks me sometimes.

    I write this with faith that god will remove my fears a take me further towards the truth

    Yours faithfully, Michael Buis

  8. Greetings, Mr. Buis, and thanks for your note.

    I am glad that you are watching Tomorrow’s World and checking what you see and read with what God says in His Word! And I encourage you to continue striving to live what you read and asking for God to help you do so. If you would like, there is a phone number in our magazine that you can call and request a call from one of our ministers.

    As for creation, the Bible does seem to indicate that there is a span of time between the original creation of the earth and the universe, which we see referenced in Genesis 1:1, and the recreation of the world over the course of one week, which we see beginning in Genesis 1:2. Time will tell if this is where the “dinosaurs” fit in, but it is certainly a possibility. The world we see around us today, however, was not created until the sixth day of that “creation week,” just as we are told in Genesis.

    As for the 6,000 years, we find this when we calculate the time spans given to us in Scripture, beginning with Adam and Eve (e.g., Adam lived 130 years and begot Seth, who lived 105 years and begot Enosh, etc.). If you haven’t enrolled in our free Bible Study Course, I would encourage you to do so. In Lesson 2 of the Bible Study Course, the student is walked step-by-step through the calculation that demonstrates this current age has lasted approximately 6,000. You can subscribe to the Bible Study Course on our webpage at http://www.tomorrowsworld.org/orderfree.shtml or you can contact our headquarters at the number in your magazine — I highly recommend it!

    I hope this has been helpful, and — again — I encourage you as you grow in your walk with God and in your desire and ability to trust Him. The times ahead may be frightening, but Jesus said that for those who are walking with Him the signs of things to come are actually signs of hope, and that rather than feeling fearful we can “lift up our heads, because [our] redemption draws near” (Luke 21:28). I will pray that as you learn to walk with Him all the more closely you will experience the joy and confidence that comes from trusting Him.

    Take care, and thanks again for writing!

    In Christ’s service,
    Wallace Smith

  9. Thinker

    Hello Wallace,

    Some thoughts about Satan and the demons as far as their sins. Was Lucifer’s original sin, pride and arrogance,or was that possibly the result of having a twisted and perverted mind AFTER some other sin which he may have committed?
    If the penalty for angels that sin is a damaged mind then it could have been any type of sin which led to that condition. Then other sins from a damaged and now deceived mind would come into existence such as pride and arrogance etc.
    What was the possibility that all of the angels that sinned were comitting the same exact sin as Lucifer? Different angels over a period of time may have comiited other sins to end up in their twisted state of mind,maybe with bad influences affecting others which led to different angels sinning at different times and culminating to a final huge rebellion when God allowed it.

  10. Dear Mr. Smith,

    Gus Shabbos! (That’s Yiddish for “good Sabbath”, for all you Texicans out there.)

    GS may not see this (I hope he does), but “nation” is in fact mentioned MANY, MANY TIMES in the Bible. Hebrew alone has at least three words with that basic meaning (defining the meaning from different angles: *goy* in terms of ethnicity, *`am* in terms of people, and *malkhut* in terms of kingdom or goverment). And to restate what I thought was a good argument by you: the Bible (e.g., Daniel 7:23) describes the last of four “beasts” which are said to represent “kings” or “kingdoms” interchangeably. Put together all the scriptures and compare the results with history, and it’s clear that this fourth “beast” can only be the Roman Empire. There’s a one-to-one correspondence between biblical symbolism (which interprets itself in the Isaiah 28:9-13 sense: just apply Occam’s Razor to it rigorously) and historical fact — just what one would expect of genuine prophecy.

    Nonsense, indeed…and I’m the Queen of Romania. The outline of biblical prophecy — this light shining in a dark place (2 Peter 1:19-20) — is one very important thing that has made and kept me loyal to God, sometimes despite myself.

    Here’s a thought for Thinker (not meaning to pre-empt you, but hoping to provide much grist for your mill):

    (Ezekiel 28:15 ESV) You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created, till unrighteousness was found in you.

    (Ezekiel 28:16 ESV) In the abundance of your trade you were filled with violence in your midst, and you sinned; so I cast you as a profane thing from the mountain of God, and I destroyed you, O [covering] cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.

    (Ezekiel 28:17 ESV) Your heart was proud because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor. I cast you to the ground; I exposed you before kings, to feast their eyes on you.

    (Jeremiah 9:23 ESV) Thus says the LORD: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches [all things that Lucifer evidently did – substitute “beauty” for “might”, which Biblical Hebrew often links anyway, and there is no difference],

    (Jeremiah 9:24 ESV) but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the LORD.”

    (Daniel 8:9 ESV) Out of one of them came a little horn, which grew exceedingly great toward the south, toward the east, and toward the glorious land.

    (Daniel 8:10 ESV) It grew great, even to the host of heaven. And some of the host and some of the stars it threw down to the ground and trampled on them.

    (Revelation 12:3 ESV) And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems.

    (Revelation 12:4 ESV) His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it.

    (Revelation 12:9 ESV) And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world–he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.

    It’s clear who started angelic sin, where that sin started in him, and whether angels sinned independent of his power and influence or not. We teach what we do on this subject for a reason. It’s the simplest explanation of all the facts.

    Perhaps Thinker, other readers, and yourself would enjoy the essay found in this post’s Website link. Its thrust is on “God’s government” overall, but it also deals with the history of angels before man. I have done my best to make it accurate.

    שבת שלום
    יוחנן רכב

  11. Howdy, Mr. Wheeler and Thinker —

    I appreciate your thoughts, Thinker! I think Mr. Wheeler covered some of the elements concerning Lucifer/Satan’s fall very well, and I hope you find the comments helpful. Thanks to both of you for taking the time to comment.

    Concerning your linked to essay, Mr. Wheeler, I must say that I have read it before on your website, and while I find it full of some helpful insights, I also find it contains a few unsupported stretches here and there, IMHO. 🙂

    Thanks again, gentlemen, and I hope you had a wonderful Sabbath!

    — Wallace Smith

  12. Thinker

    Just some thoughts about how many fallen angels that there may be..
    Can’t get to it now but there is a section of Revelation where it mentions a number of angels around God’s Throne. I believe it was ten thousand times ten thousand plus thousands upon thousands(sorry I can’t look it up). If that means one-hundred million plus then one third would mean that there are fifty million demons! If that many can go astray what about humans? Something for us to think about?

    Thinker

  13. Atheos

    This site is one big fallacy. All I see here is the same old picking and choosing of various bible passages to make any positive claim about the bible valid.

    In the response to GS’s 1st question (reading the bible “as is”, and it’s many interpretations) – Mr. Wallace Smith uses selected passages and bible stories out of context to explain further, a self-righteous position for his interpretations on this website. Without facts, his interpretations should be correct because he has deep faith IN his faith – faith that he is correct in his choice of using out of context passages to make his biblical god look bigger, less archaic in these advanced scientific times… Mr. Wallace Smith is working in vain

  14. Greetings, Atheos. Thanks for your comment and for keeping your what I would imagine to be a personal tendency towards intense invective in check (well, at least partially in check).

    I think my response to GS (in the comment below his) still stands on its own, and nothing you have said here (given that it is simply a groundless bashing of me, personally) changes any of that.

    On your other charges, I do not seek to make “any positive claim about the [B]ible [seem] valid,” since the positive nature of a claim doesn’t mean it is valid (and I can think of a few such claims). However, I do note that many negative claims about the Bible have not stood the test of time, which casts reasonable doubts on the newer and untested ones arising today.

    And as for taking passages out of context, I recognize that that is a tempting option taken by many, but I have striven to avoid it. If I have failed, I am certainly willing to take my lumps, but I would need more evidence that your simple, groundless assertions provide.

    Finally, as for a “self-righteous position,” the tone of your comment suggests that, if you are right, you and I might make good company. You might start looking for a mirror next time you want to toss around accusations of such a nature.

    Thanks again for your comment.

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