The Lucifer Rebellion
The Lucifer manifesto was issued at the annual conclave of Satania on the sea of glass, in the presence of the assembled hosts of Jerusem, on the last day of the year, about two hundred thousand years ago, Urantia time. Satan proclaimed that worship could be accorded the universal forces--physical, intellectual, and spiritual--but that allegiance could be acknowledged only to the actual and present ruler, Lucifer, the "friend of men and angels" and the "God of liberty."
Self-assertion was the battle cry of the Lucifer rebellion. One of his chief arguments was that, if self-government was good and right for the Melchizedeks and other groups, it was equally good for all orders of intelligence. He was bold and persistent in the advocacy of the "equality of mind" and "the brotherhood of intelligence." He maintained that all government should be limited to the local planets and their voluntary confederation into the local systems. All other supervision he disallowed. He promised the Planetary Princes that they should rule the worlds as supreme executives. He denounced the location of legislative activities on the constellation headquarters and the conduct of judicial affairs on the universe capital. He contended that all these functions of government should be concentrated on the system capitals and proceeded to set up his own legislative assembly and organized his own tribunals under the jurisdiction of Satan. And he directed that the princes on the apostate worlds do the same.
The entire administrative cabinet of Lucifer went over in a body and were sworn in publicly as the officers of the administration of the new head of "the liberated worlds and systems."
While there had been two previous rebellions in Nebadon, they were in distant constellations. Lucifer held that these insurrections were unsuccessful because the majority of the intelligences failed to follow their leaders. He contended that "majorities rule," that "mind is infallible." The freedom allowed him by the universe rulers apparently sustained many of his nefarious contentions. He defied all his superiors; yet they apparently took no note of his doings. He was given a free hand to prosecute his seductive plan without let or hindrance.
All the merciful delays of justice Lucifer pointed to as evidence of the inability of the government of the Paradise Sons to stop the rebellion. He would openly defy and arrogantly challenge Michael, Immanuel, and the Ancients of Days and then point to the fact that no action ensued as positive evidence of the impotency of the universe and the superuniverse governments.
Gabriel was personally present throughout all these disloyal proceedings and only announced that he would, in due time, speak for Michael, and that all beings would be left free and unmolested in their choice; that the "government of the Sons for the Father desired only that loyalty and devotion which was voluntary, wholehearted, and sophistry-proof."
Lucifer was permitted fully to establish and thoroughly to organize his rebel government before Gabriel made any effort to contest the right of secession or to counterwork the rebel propaganda. But the Constellation Fathers immediately confined the action of these disloyal personalities to the system of Satania. Nevertheless, this period of delay was a time of great trial and testing to the loyal beings of all Satania. All was chaotic for a few years, and there was great confusion on the mansion worlds.
Upon the outbreak of the Satania rebellion, Michael took counsel of his Paradise brother, Immanuel. Following this momentous conference, Michael announced that he would pursue the same policy which had characterized his dealings with similar upheavals in the past, an attitude of noninterference.
At the time of this rebellion and the two which preceded it there was no absolute and personal sovereign authority in the universe of Nebadon. Michael ruled by divine right, as vicegerent of the Universal Father, but not yet in his own personal right. He had not completed his bestowal career; he had not yet been vested with "all power in heaven and on earth."
From the outbreak of rebellion to the day of his enthronement as sovereign ruler of Nebadon, Michael never interfered with the rebel forces of Lucifer; they were allowed to run a free course for almost two hundred thousand years of Urantia time. Christ Michael now has ample power and authority to deal promptly, even summarily, with such outbreaks of disloyalty, but we doubt that this sovereign authority would lead him to act differently if another such upheaval should occur.
Since Michael elected to remain aloof from the actual warfare of the Lucifer rebellion, Gabriel called his personal staff together on Edentia and, in counsel with the Most Highs, elected to assume command of the loyal hosts of Satania. Michael remained on Salvington while Gabriel proceeded to Jerusem, and establishing himself on the sphere dedicated to the Father--the same Universal Father whose personality Lucifer and Satan had questioned--in the presence of the forgathered hosts of loyal personalities, he displayed the banner of Michael, the material emblem of the Trinity government of all creation, the three azure blue concentric circles on a white background.
The Lucifer emblem was a banner of white with one red circle, in the center of which a black solid circle appeared.
"There was war in heaven; Michael's commander and his angels fought against the dragon (Lucifer, Satan, and the apostate princes); and the dragon and his rebellious angels fought but prevailed not." This "war in heaven" was not a physical battle as such a conflict might be conceived on Urantia. In the early days of the struggle Lucifer held forth continuously in the planetary amphitheater. Gabriel conducted an unceasing exposure of the rebel sophistries from his headquarters taken up near at hand. The various personalities present on the sphere who were in doubt as to their attitude would journey back and forth between these discussions until they arrived at a final decision.
But this war in heaven was very terrible and very real. While displaying none of the barbarities so characteristic of physical warfare on the immature worlds, this conflict was far more deadly; material life is in jeopardy in material combat, but the war in heaven was fought in terms of life eternal.
There were many noble and inspiring acts of devotion and loyalty which were performed by numerous personalities during the interim between the outbreak of hostilities and the arrival of the new system ruler and his staff. But the most thrilling of all these daring feats of devotion was the courageous conduct of Manotia, the second in command of the Satania headquarters' seraphim.
At the outbreak of rebellion on Jerusem the head of the seraphic hosts joined the Lucifer cause. This no doubt explains why such a large number of the fourth order, the system administrator seraphim, went astray. The seraphic leader was spiritually blinded by the brilliant personality of Lucifer; his charming ways fascinated the lower orders of celestial beings. They simply could not comprehend that it was possible for such a dazzling personality to go wrong.
Not long since, in describing the experiences associated with the onset of the Lucifer rebellion, Manotia said: "But my most exhilarating moment was the thrilling adventure connected with the Lucifer rebellion when, as second seraphic commander, I refused to participate in the projected insult to Michael; and the powerful rebels sought my destruction by means of the liaison forces they had arranged. There was a tremendous upheaval on Jerusem, but not a single loyal seraphim was harmed.
"Upon the default of my immediate superior it devolved upon me to assume command of the angelic hosts of Jerusem as the titular director of the confused seraphic affairs of the system. I was morally upheld by the Melchizedeks, ably assisted by a majority of the Material Sons, deserted by a tremendous group of my own order, but magnificently supported by the ascendant mortals on Jerusem.
"Having been automatically thrown out of the constellation circuits by the secession of Lucifer, we were dependent on the loyalty of our intelligence corps, who forwarded calls for help to Edentia from the near-by system of Rantulia; and we found that the kingdom of order, the intellect of loyalty, and the spirit of truth were inherently triumphant over rebellion, self-assertion, and so-called personal liberty; we were able to carry on until the arrival of the new System Sovereign, the worthy successor of Lucifer. And immediately thereafter I was assigned to the corps of the Melchizedek receivership of Urantia, assuming jurisdiction over the loyal seraphic orders on the world of the traitorous Caligastia, who had proclaimed his sphere a member of the newly projected system of `liberated worlds and emancipated personalities' proposed in the infamous Declaration of Liberty issued by Lucifer in his call to the `liberty-loving, freethinking, and forward-looking intelligences of the misruled and maladministered worlds of Satania.'"
This angel is still in service on Urantia, functioning as associate chief of seraphim.
The Lucifer rebellion was system wide. Thirty-seven seceding Planetary Princes swung their world administrations largely to the side of the archrebel. Only on Panoptia did the Planetary Prince fail to carry his people with him. On this world, under the guidance of the Melchizedeks, the people rallied to the support of Michael. Ellanora, a young woman of that mortal realm, grasped the leadership of the human races, and not a single soul on that strife-torn world enlisted under the Lucifer banner. And ever since have these loyal Panoptians served on the seventh Jerusem transition world as the caretakers and builders on the Father's sphere and its surrounding seven detention worlds. The Panoptians not only act as the literal custodians of these worlds, but they also execute the personal orders of Michael for the embellishment of these spheres for some future and unknown use. They do this work as they tarry en route to Edentia.
Throughout this period Caligastia was advocating the cause of Lucifer on Urantia. The Melchizedeks ably opposed the apostate Planetary Prince, but the sophistries of unbridled liberty and the delusions of self-assertion had every opportunity for deceiving the primitive peoples of a young and undeveloped world.
All secession propaganda had to be carried on by personal effort because the broadcast service and all other avenues of interplanetary communication were suspended by the action of the system circuit supervisors. Upon the actual outbreak of the insurrection the entire system of Satania was isolated in both the constellation and the universe circuits. During this time all incoming and outgoing messages were dispatched by seraphic agents and Solitary Messengers. The circuits to the fallen worlds were also cut off, so that Lucifer could not utilize this avenue for the furtherance of his nefarious scheme. And these circuits will not be restored so long as the archrebel lives within the confines of Satania.
This was a Lanonandek rebellion. The higher orders of local universe sonship did not join the Lucifer secession, although a few of the Life Carriers stationed on the rebel planets were somewhat influenced by the rebellion of the disloyal princes. None of the Trinitized Sons went astray. The Melchizedeks, archangels, and the Brilliant Evening Stars were all loyal to Michael and, with Gabriel, valiantly contended for the Father's will and the Son's rule.
No beings of Paradise origin were involved in disloyalty. Together with the Solitary Messengers they took up headquarters on the world of the Spirit and remained under the leadership of the Faithful of Days of Edentia. None of the conciliators apostatized, nor did a single one of the Celestial Recorders go astray. But a heavy toll was taken of the Morontia Companions and the Mansion World Teachers.
Of the supreme order of seraphim, not an angel was lost, but a considerable group of the next order, the superior, were deceived and ensnared. Likewise a few of the third or supervisor order of angels were misled. But the terrible breakdown came in the fourth group, the administrator angels, those seraphim who are normally assigned to the duties of the system capitals. Manotia saved almost two thirds of them, but slightly over one third followed their chief into the rebel ranks. One third of all the Jerusem cherubim attached to the administrator angels were lost with their disloyal seraphim.
Of the planetary angelic helpers, those assigned to the Material Sons, about one third were deceived, and almost ten per cent of the transition ministers were ensnared. In symbol John saw this when he wrote of the great red dragon, saying: "And his tail drew a third part of the stars of heaven and cast them down in darkness."
The greatest loss occurred in the angelic ranks, but most of the lower orders of intelligence were involved in disloyalty. Of the 681,217 Material Sons lost in Satania, ninety-five per cent were casualties of the Lucifer rebellion. Large numbers of midway creatures were lost on those individual planets whose Planetary Princes joined the Lucifer cause.
In many respects this rebellion was the most widespread and disastrous of all such occurrences in Nebadon. More personalities were involved in this insurrection than in both of the others. And it is to their everlasting dishonor that the emissaries of Lucifer and Satan spared not the infant-training schools on the finaliter cultural planet but rather sought to corrupt these developing minds in mercy salvaged from the evolutionary worlds.
The ascending mortals were vulnerable, but they withstood the sophistries of rebellion better than the lower spirits. While many on the lower mansion worlds, those who had not attained final fusion with their Adjusters, fell, it is recorded to the glory of the wisdom of the ascension scheme that not a single member of the Satania ascendant citizenship resident on Jerusem participated in the Lucifer rebellion.
Hour by hour and day by day the broadcast stations of all Nebadon were thronged by the anxious watchers of every imaginable class of celestial intelligence, who intently perused the bulletins of the Satania rebellion and rejoiced as the reports continuously narrated the unswerving loyalty of the ascending mortals who, under their Melchizedek leadership, successfully withstood the combined and protracted efforts of all the subtle evil forces which so swiftly gathered around the banners of secession and sin.
It was over two years of system time from the beginning of the "war in heaven" until the installation of Lucifer's successor. But at last the new Sovereign came, landing on the sea of glass with his staff. I was among the reserves mobilized on Edentia by Gabriel, and I well remember the first message of Lanaforge to the Constellation Father of Norlatiadek. It read: "Not a single Jerusem citizen was lost. Every ascendant mortal survived the fiery trial and emerged from the crucial test triumphant and altogether victorious." And on to Salvington, Uversa, and Paradise went this message of assurance that the survival experience of mortal ascension is the greatest security against rebellion and the surest safeguard against sin. This noble Jerusem band of faithful mortals numbered just 187,432,811.
With the arrival of Lanaforge the archrebels were dethroned and shorn of all governing powers, though they were permitted freely to go about Jerusem, the morontia spheres, and even to the individual inhabited worlds. They continued their deceptive and seductive efforts to confuse and mislead the minds of men and angels. But as concerned their work on the administrative mount of Jerusem, "their place was found no more."
While Lucifer was deprived of all administrative authority in Satania, there then existed no local universe power nor tribunal which could detain or destroy this wicked rebel; at that time Michael was not a sovereign ruler. The Ancients of Days sustained the Constellation Fathers in their seizure of the system government, but they have never handed down any subsequent decisions in the many appeals still pending with regard to the present status and future disposition of Lucifer, Satan, and their associates.
Thus were these archrebels allowed to roam the entire system to seek further penetration for their doctrines of discontent and self-assertion. But in almost two hundred thousand Urantia years they have been unable to deceive another world. No Satania worlds have been lost since the fall of the thirty-seven, not even those younger worlds peopled since that day of rebellion.
Lucifer and Satan freely roamed the Satania system until the completion of the bestowal mission of Michael on Urantia. They were last on your world together during the time of their combined assault upon the Son of Man.
Formerly, when the Planetary Princes, the "Sons of God," were periodically assembled, "Satan came also," claiming that he represented all of the isolated worlds of the fallen Planetary Princes. But he has not been accorded such liberty on Jerusem since Michael's terminal bestowal. Subsequent to their effort to corrupt Michael when in the bestowal flesh, all sympathy for Lucifer and Satan has perished throughout all Satania, that is, outside the isolated worlds of sin.
The bestowal of Michael terminated the Lucifer rebellion in all Satania aside from the planets of the apostate Planetary Princes. And this was the significance of Jesus' personal experience, just before his death in the flesh, when he one day exclaimed to his disciples, "And I beheld Satan fall as lightning from heaven." He had come with Lucifer to Urantia for the last crucial struggle.
The Son of Man was confident of success, and he knew that his triumph on your world would forever settle the status of his agelong enemies, not only in Satania but also in the other two systems where sin had entered. There was survival for mortals and security for angels when your Master, in reply to the Lucifer proposals, calmly and with divine assurance replied, "Get you behind me, Satan." That was, in principle, the real end of the Lucifer rebellion. True, the Uversa tribunals have not yet rendered the executive decision regarding the appeal of Gabriel praying for the destruction of the rebels, but such a decree will, no doubt, be forthcoming in the fullness of time since the first step in the hearing of this case has already been taken.
Caligastia was recognized by the Son of Man as the technical Prince of Urantia up to near the time of his death. Said Jesus: "Now is the judgment of this world; now shall the prince of this world be cast down." And then still nearer the completion of his lifework he announced, "The prince of this world is judged." And it is this same dethroned and discredited Prince who was once termed "God of Urantia."
The last act of Michael before leaving Urantia was to offer mercy to Caligastia and Daligastia, but they spurned his tender proffer. Caligastia, your apostate Planetary Prince, is still free on Urantia to prosecute his nefarious designs, but he has absolutely no power to enter the minds of men, neither can he draw near to their souls to tempt or corrupt them unless they really desire to be cursed with his wicked presence.
Before the bestowal of Michael these rulers of darkness sought to maintain their authority on Urantia, and they persistently withstood the minor and subordinate celestial personalities. But since the day of Pentecost this traitorous Caligastia and his equally contemptible associate, Daligastia, are servile before the divine majesty of the Paradise Thought Adjusters and the protective Spirit of Truth, the spirit of Michael, which has been poured out upon all flesh.
But even so, no fallen spirit ever did have the power to invade the minds or to harass the souls of the children of God. Neither Satan nor Caligastia could ever touch or approach the faith sons of God; faith is an effective armor against sin and iniquity. It is true: "He who is born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one touches him not."
In general, when weak and dissolute mortals are supposed to be under the influence of devils and demons, they are merely being dominated by their own inherent and debased tendencies, being led away by their own natural propensities. The devil has been given a great deal of credit for evil which does not belong to him. Caligastia has been comparatively impotent since the cross of Christ.
Early in the days of the Lucifer rebellion, salvation was offered all rebels by Michael. To all who would show proof of sincere repentance, he offered, upon his attainment of complete universe sovereignty, forgiveness and reinstatement in some form of universe service. None of the leaders accepted this merciful proffer. But thousands of the angels and the lower orders of celestial beings, including hundreds of the Material Sons and Daughters, accepted the mercy proclaimed by the Panoptians and were given rehabilitation at the time of Jesus' resurrection nineteen hundred years ago. These beings have since been transferred to the Father's world of Jerusem, where they must be held, technically, until the Uversa courts hand down a decision in the matter of Gabriel vs. Lucifer. But no one doubts that, when the annihilation verdict is issued, these repentant and salvaged personalities will be exempted from the decree of extinction. These probationary souls now labor with the Panoptians in the work of caring for the Father's world.
The archdeceiver has never been on Urantia since the days when he sought to turn back Michael from the purpose to complete the bestowal and to establish himself finally and securely as the unqualified ruler of Nebadon. Upon Michael's becoming the settled head of the universe of Nebadon, Lucifer was taken into custody by the agents of the Uversa Ancients of Days and has since been a prisoner on satellite number one of the Father's group of the transition spheres of Jerusem. And here the rulers of other worlds and systems behold the end of the unfaithful Sovereign of Satania. Paul knew of the status of these rebellious leaders following Michael's bestowal, for he wrote of Caligastia's chiefs as "spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places."
Michael, upon assuming the supreme sovereignty of Nebadon, petitioned the Ancients of Days for authority to intern all personalities concerned in the Lucifer rebellion pending the rulings of the superuniverse tribunals in the case of Gabriel vs. Lucifer, placed on the records of the Uversa supreme court almost two hundred thousand years ago, as you reckon time. Concerning the system capital group, the Ancients of Days granted the Michael petition with but a single exception: Satan was allowed to make periodic visits to the apostate princes on the fallen worlds until another Son of God should be accepted by such apostate worlds, or until such time as the courts of Uversa should begin the adjudication of the case of Gabriel vs. Lucifer.
Satan could come to Urantia because you had no Son of standing in residence--neither Planetary Prince nor Material Son. Machiventa Melchizedek has since been proclaimed vicegerent Planetary Prince of Urantia, and the opening of the case of Gabriel vs. Lucifer has signalized the inauguration of temporary planetary regimes on all the isolated worlds. It is true that Satan did periodically visit Caligastia and others of the fallen princes right up to the time of the presentation of these revelations, when there occurred the first hearing of Gabriel's plea for the annihilation of the archrebels. Satan is now unqualifiedly detained on the Jerusem prison worlds.
Since Michael's final bestowal no one in all Satania has desired to go to the prison worlds to minister to the interned rebels. And no more beings have been won to the deceiver's cause. For nineteen hundred years the status has been unchanged.
We do not look for a removal of the present Satania restrictions until the Ancients of Days make final disposition of the archrebels. The system circuits will not be reinstated so long as Lucifer lives. Meantime, he is wholly inactive.
The rebellion has ended on Jerusem. It ends on the fallen worlds as fast as divine Sons arrive. We believe that all rebels who will ever accept mercy have done so. We await the flashing broadcast that will deprive these traitors of personality existence. We anticipate the verdict of Uversa will be announced by the executionary broadcast which will effect the annihilation of these interned rebels. Then will you look for their places, but they shall not be found. "And they who know you among the worlds will be astonished at you; you have been a terror, but never shall you be any more." And thus shall all of these unworthy traitors "become as though they had not been." All await the Uversa decree.
But for ages the seven prison worlds of spiritual darkness in Satania have constituted a solemn warning to all Nebadon, eloquently and effectively proclaiming the great truth "that the way of the transgressor is hard"; "that within every sin is concealed the seed of its own destruction"; that "the wages of sin is death."
[Presented by Manovandet Melchizedek, onetime attached to the receivership of Urantia.]
Evolutionary man finds it difficult fully to comprehend the significance and to grasp the meanings of evil, error, sin, and iniquity. Man is slow to perceive that contrastive perfection and imperfection produce potential evil; that conflicting truth and falsehood create confusing error; that the divine endowment of freewill choice eventuates in the divergent realms of sin and righteousness; that the persistent pursuit of divinity leads to the kingdom of God as contrasted with its continuous rejection, which leads to the domains of iniquity.
The Gods neither create evil nor permit sin and rebellion. Potential evil is time-existent in a universe embracing differential levels of perfection meanings and values. Sin is potential in all realms where imperfect beings are endowed with the ability to choose between good and evil. The very conflicting presence of truth and untruth, fact and falsehood, constitutes the potentiality of error. The deliberate choice of evil constitutes sin; the willful rejection of truth is error; the persistent pursuit of sin and error is iniquity.
Of all the perplexing problems growing out of the Lucifer rebellion, none has occasioned more difficulty than the failure of immature evolutionary mortals to distinguish between true and false liberty.
True liberty is the quest of the ages and the reward of evolutionary progress. False liberty is the subtle deception of the error of time and the evil of space. Enduring liberty is predicated on the reality of justice--intelligence, maturity, fraternity, and equity.
Liberty is a self-destroying technique of cosmic existence when its motivation is unintelligent, unconditioned, and uncontrolled. True liberty is progressively related to reality and is ever regardful of social equity, cosmic fairness, universe fraternity, and divine obligations.
Liberty is suicidal when divorced from material justice, intellectual fairness, social forbearance, moral duty, and spiritual values. Liberty is nonexistent apart from cosmic reality, and all personality reality is proportional to its divinity relationships.
Unbridled self-will and unregulated self-expression equal unmitigated selfishness, the acme of ungodliness. Liberty without the associated and ever-increasing conquest of self is a figment of egoistic mortal imagination. Self-motivated liberty is a conceptual illusion, a cruel deception. License masquerading in the garments of liberty is the forerunner of abject bondage.
True liberty is the associate of genuine self-respect; false liberty is the consort of self-admiration. True liberty is the fruit of self-control; false liberty, the assumption of self-assertion. Self-control leads to altruistic service; self-admiration tends towards the exploitation of others for the selfish aggrandizement of such a mistaken individual as is willing to sacrifice righteous attainment for the sake of possessing unjust power over his fellow beings.
Even wisdom is divine and safe only when it is cosmic in scope and spiritual in motivation.
There is no error greater than that species of self-deception which leads intelligent beings to crave the exercise of power over other beings for the purpose of depriving these persons of their natural liberties. The golden rule of human fairness cries out against all such fraud, unfairness, selfishness, and unrighteousness. Only true and genuine liberty is compatible with the reign of love and the ministry of mercy.
How dare the self-willed creature encroach upon the rights of his fellows in the name of personal liberty when the Supreme Rulers of the universe stand back in merciful respect for these prerogatives of will and potentials of personality! No being, in the exercise of his supposed personal liberty, has a right to deprive any other being of those privileges of existence conferred by the Creators and duly respected by all their loyal associates, subordinates, and subjects.
Evolutionary man may have to contend for his material liberties with tyrants and oppressors on a world of sin and iniquity or during the early times of a primitive evolving sphere, but not so on the morontia worlds or on the spirit spheres. War is the heritage of early evolutionary man, but on worlds of normal advancing civilization physical combat as a technique of adjusting racial misunderstandings has long since fallen into disrepute.
With the Son and in the Spirit did God project eternal Havona, and ever since has there obtained the eternal pattern of co-ordinate participation in creation--sharing. This pattern of sharing is the master design for every one of the Sons and Daughters of God who go out into space to engage in the attempt to duplicate in time the central universe of eternal perfection.
Every creature of every evolving universe who aspires to do the Father's will is destined to become the partner of the time-space Creators in this magnificent adventure of experiential perfection attainment. Were this not true, the Father would have hardly endowed such creatures with creative free will, neither would he indwell them, actually go into partnership with them by means of his own spirit.
Lucifer's folly was the attempt to do the nondoable, to short-circuit time in an experiential universe. Lucifer's crime was the attempted creative disenfranchisement of every personality in Satania, the unrecognized abridgment of the creature's personal participation--freewill participation--in the long evolutionary struggle to attain the status of light and life both individually and collectively. In so doing this onetime Sovereign of your system set the temporal purpose of his own will directly athwart the eternal purpose of God's will as it is revealed in the bestowal of free will upon all personal creatures. The Lucifer rebellion thus threatened the maximum possible infringement of the freewill choice of the ascenders and servers of the system of Satania--a threat forevermore to deprive every one of these beings of the thrilling experience of contributing something personal and unique to the slowly erecting monument to experiential wisdom which will sometime exist as the perfected system of Satania. Thus does the Lucifer manifesto, masquerading in the habiliments of liberty, stand forth in the clear light of reason as a monumental threat to consummate the theft of personal liberty and to do it on a scale that has been approached only twice in all the history of Nebadon.
In short, what God had given men and angels Lucifer would have taken away from them, that is, the divine privilege of participating in the creation of their own destinies and of the destiny of this local system of inhabited worlds.
No being in all the universe has the rightful liberty to deprive any other being of true liberty, the right to love and be loved, the privilege of worshiping God and of serving his fellows.
The moral will creatures of the evolutionary worlds are always bothered with the unthinking question as to why the all-wise Creators permit evil and sin. They fail to comprehend that both are inevitable if the creature is to be truly free. The free will of evolving man or exquisite angel is not a mere philosophic concept, a symbolic ideal. Man's ability to choose good or evil is a universe reality. This liberty to choose for oneself is an endowment of the Supreme Rulers, and they will not permit any being or group of beings to deprive a single personality in the wide universe of this divinely bestowed liberty--not even to satisfy such misguided and ignorant beings in the enjoyment of this misnamed personal liberty.
Although conscious and wholehearted identification with evil (sin) is the equivalent of nonexistence (annihilation), there must always intervene between the time of such personal identification with sin and the execution of the penalty--the automatic result of such a willful embrace of evil--a period of time of sufficient length to allow for such an adjudication of such an individual's universe status as will prove entirely satisfactory to all related universe personalities, and which will be so fair and just as to win the approval of the sinner himself.
But if this universe rebel against the reality of truth and goodness refuses to approve the verdict, and if the guilty one knows in his heart the justice of his condemnation but refuses to make such confession, then must the execution of sentence be delayed in accordance with the discretion of the Ancients of Days. And the Ancients of Days refuse to annihilate any being until all moral values and all spiritual realities are extinct, both in the evildoer and in all related supporters and possible sympathizers.
Another problem somewhat difficult of explanation in the constellation of Norlatiadek pertains to the reasons for permitting Lucifer, Satan, and the fallen princes to work mischief so long before being apprehended, interned, and adjudicated.
Parents, those who have borne and reared children, are better able to understand why Michael, a Creator-father, might be slow to condemn and destroy his own Sons. Jesus' story of the prodigal son well illustrates how a loving father can long wait for the repentance of an erring child.
The very fact that an evil-doing creature can actually choose to do wrong--commit sin--establishes the fact of free-willness and fully justifies any length delay in the execution of justice provided the extended mercy might conduce to repentance and rehabilitation.
Most of the liberties which Lucifer sought he already had; others he was to receive in the future. All these precious endowments were lost by giving way to impatience and yielding to a desire to possess what one craves now and to possess it in defiance of all obligation to respect the rights and liberties of all other beings composing the universe of universes. Ethical obligations are innate, divine, and universal.
There are many reasons known to us why the Supreme Rulers did not immediately destroy or intern the leaders of the Lucifer rebellion. There are no doubt still other and possibly better reasons unknown to us. The mercy features of this delay in the execution of justice were extended personally by Michael of Nebadon. Except for the affection of this Creator-father for his erring Sons, the supreme justice of the superuniverse would have acted. If such an episode as the Lucifer rebellion had occurred in Nebadon while Michael was incarnated on Urantia, the instigators of such evil might have been instantly and absolutely annihilated.
Supreme justice can act instantly when not restrained by divine mercy. But the ministry of mercy to the children of time and space always provides for this time lag, this saving interval between seedtime and harvest. If the seed sowing is good, this interval provides for the testing and upbuilding of character; if the seed sowing is evil, this merciful delay provides time for repentance and rectification. This time delay in the adjudication and execution of evildoers is inherent in the mercy ministry of the seven superuniverses. This restraint of justice by mercy proves that God is love, and that such a God of love dominates the universes and in mercy controls the fate and judgment of all his creatures.
The mercy delays of time are by the mandate of the free will of the Creators. There is good to be derived in the universe from this technique of patience in dealing with sinful rebels. While it is all too true that good cannot come of evil to the one who contemplates and performs evil, it is equally true that all things (including evil, potential and manifest) work together for good to all beings who know God, love to do his will, and are ascending Paradiseward according to his eternal plan and divine purpose.
But these mercy delays are not interminable. Notwithstanding the long delay (as time is reckoned on Urantia) in adjudicating the Lucifer rebellion, we may record that, during the time of effecting this revelation, the first hearing in the pending case of Gabriel vs. Lucifer was held on Uversa, and soon thereafter there issued the mandate of the Ancients of Days directing that Satan be henceforth confined to the prison world with Lucifer. This ends the ability of Satan to pay further visits to any of the fallen worlds of Satania. Justice in a mercy-dominated universe may be slow, but it is certain.
Of the many reasons known to me as to why Lucifer and his confederates were not sooner interned or adjudicated, I am permitted to recite the following:
1. Mercy requires that every wrongdoer have sufficient time in which to formulate a deliberate and fully chosen attitude regarding his evil thoughts and sinful acts.
2. Supreme justice is dominated by a Father's love; therefore will justice never destroy that which mercy can save. Time to accept salvation is vouchsafed every evildoer.
3. No affectionate father is ever precipitate in visiting punishment upon an erring member of his family. Patience cannot function independently of time.
4. While wrongdoing is always deleterious to a family, wisdom and love admonish the upright children to bear with an erring brother during the time granted by the affectionate father in which the sinner may see the error of his way and embrace salvation.
5. Regardless of Michael's attitude toward Lucifer, notwithstanding his being Lucifer's Creator-father, it was not in the province of the Creator Son to exercise summary jurisdiction over the apostate System Sovereign because he had not then completed his bestowal career, thereby attaining unqualified sovereignty of Nebadon.
6. The Ancients of Days could have immediately annihilated these rebels, but they seldom execute wrongdoers without a full hearing. In this instance they refused to overrule the Michael decisions.
7. It is evident that Immanuel counseled Michael to remain aloof from the rebels and allow rebellion to pursue a natural course of self-obliteration. And the wisdom of the Union of Days is the time reflection of the united wisdom of the Paradise Trinity.
8. The Faithful of Days on Edentia advised the Constellation Fathers to allow the rebels free course to the end that all sympathy for these evildoers should be the sooner uprooted in the hearts of every present and future citizen of Norlatiadek--every mortal, morontia, or spirit creature.
9. On Jerusem the personal representative of the Supreme Executive of Orvonton counseled Gabriel to foster full opportunity for every living creature to mature a deliberate choice in those matters involved in the Lucifer Declaration of Liberty. The issues of rebellion having been raised, the Paradise emergency adviser of Gabriel portrayed that, if such full and free opportunity were not given all Norlatiadek creatures, then would the Paradise quarantine against all such possible halfhearted or doubt-stricken creatures be extended in self-protection against the entire constellation. To keep open the Paradise doors of ascension to the beings of Norlatiadek, it was necessary to provide for the full development of rebellion and to insure the complete determination of attitude on the part of all beings in any way concerned therewith.
10. The Divine Minister of Salvington issued as her third independent proclamation a mandate directing that nothing be done to half cure, cowardly suppress, or otherwise hide the hideous visage of rebels and rebellion. The angelic hosts were directed to work for full disclosure and unlimited opportunity for sin-expression as the quickest technique of achieving the perfect and final cure of the plague of evil and sin.
11. An emergency council of ex-mortals consisting of Mighty Messengers, glorified mortals who had had personal experience with like situations, together with their colleagues, was organized on Jerusem. They advised Gabriel that at least three times the number of beings would be led astray if arbitrary or summary methods of suppression were attempted. The entire Uversa corps of counselors concurred in advising Gabriel to permit the rebellion to take its full and natural course, even if it should require a million years to wind up the consequences.
12. Time, even in a universe of time, is relative: If a Urantia mortal of average length of life should commit a crime which precipitated world-wide pandemonium, and if he were apprehended, tried, and executed within two or three days of the commission of the crime, would it seem a long time to you? And yet that would be nearer a comparison with the length of Lucifer's life even if his adjudication, now begun, should not be completed for a hundred thousand Urantia years. The relative lapse of time from the viewpoint of Uversa, where the litigation is pending, could be indicated by saying that the crime of Lucifer was being brought to trial within two and a half seconds of its commission. From the Paradise viewpoint the adjudication is simultaneous with the enactment.
There are an equal number of reasons for not arbitrarily stopping the Lucifer rebellion which would be partially comprehensible to you, but which I am not permitted to narrate. I may inform you that on Uversa we teach forty-eight reasons for permitting evil to run the full course of its own moral bankruptcy and spiritual extinction. I doubt not that there are just as many additional reasons not known to me.
Whatever the difficulties evolutionary mortals may encounter in their efforts to understand the Lucifer rebellion, it should be clear to all reflective thinkers that the technique of dealing with the rebels is a vindication of divine love. The loving mercy extended to the rebels does seem to have involved many innocent beings in trials and tribulations, but all these distraught personalities may securely depend upon the all-wise Judges to adjudicate their destinies in mercy as well as justice.
In all their dealings with intelligent beings, both the Creator Son and his Paradise Father are love dominated. It is impossible to comprehend many phases of the attitude of the universe rulers toward rebels and rebellion--sin and sinners--unless it be remembered that God as a Father takes precedence over all other phases of Deity manifestation in all the dealings of divinity with humanity. It should also be recalled that the Paradise Creator Sons are all mercy motivated.
If an affectionate father of a large family chooses to show mercy to one of his children guilty of grievous wrongdoing, it may well be that the extension of mercy to this misbehaving child will work a temporary hardship upon all the other and well-behaved children. Such eventualities are inevitable; such a risk is inseparable from the reality situation of having a loving parent and of being a member of a family group. Each member of a family profits by the righteous conduct of every other member; likewise must each member suffer the immediate time-consequences of the misconduct of every other member. Families, groups, nations, races, worlds, systems, constellations, and universes are relationships of association which possess individuality; and therefore does every member of any such group, large or small, reap the benefits and suffer the consequences of the rightdoing and the wrongdoing of all other members of the group concerned.
But one thing should be made clear: If you are made to suffer the evil consequences of the sin of some member of your family, some fellow citizen or fellow mortal, even rebellion in the system or elsewhere--no matter what you may have to endure because of the wrongdoing of your associates, fellows, or superiors--you may rest secure in the eternal assurance that such tribulations are transient afflictions. None of these fraternal consequences of misbehavior in the group can ever jeopardize your eternal prospects or in the least degree deprive you of your divine right of Paradise ascension and God attainment.
And there is compensation for these trials, delays, and disappointments which invariably accompany the sin of rebellion. Of the many valuable repercussions of the Lucifer rebellion which might be named, I will only call attention to the enhanced careers of those mortal ascenders, the Jerusem citizens, who, by withstanding the sophistries of sin, placed themselves in line for becoming future Mighty Messengers, fellows of my own order. Every being who stood the test of that evil episode thereby immediately advanced his administrative status and enhanced his spiritual worth.
At first the Lucifer upheaval appeared to be an unmitigated calamity to the system and to the universe. Gradually benefits began to accrue. With the passing of twenty-five thousand years of system time (twenty thousand years of Urantia time), the Melchizedeks began to teach that the good resulting from Lucifer's folly had come to equal the evil incurred. The sum of evil had by that time become almost stationary, continuing to increase only on certain isolated worlds, while the beneficial repercussions continued to multiply and extend out through the universe and superuniverse, even to Havona. The Melchizedeks now teach that the good resulting from the Satania rebellion is more than a thousand times the sum of all the evil.
But such an extraordinary and beneficent harvest of wrongdoing could only be brought about by the wise, divine, and merciful attitude of all of Lucifer's superiors, extending from the Constellation Fathers on Edentia to the Universal Father on Paradise. The passing of time has enhanced the consequential good to be derived from the Lucifer folly; and since the evil to be penalized was quite fully developed within a comparatively short time, it is apparent that the all-wise and farseeing universe rulers would be certain to extend the time in which to reap increasingly beneficial results. Regardless of the many additional reasons for delaying the apprehension and adjudication of the Satania rebels, this one gain would have been enough to explain why these sinners were not sooner interned, and why they have not been adjudicated and destroyed.
Shortsighted and time-bound mortal minds should be slow to criticize the time delays of the farseeing and all-wise administrators of universe affairs.
One error of human thinking respecting these problems consists in the idea that all evolutionary mortals on an evolving planet would choose to enter upon the Paradise career if sin had not cursed their world. The ability to decline survival does not date from the times of the Lucifer rebellion. Mortal man has always possessed the endowment of freewill choice regarding the Paradise career.
As you ascend in the survival experience, you will broaden your universe concepts and extend your horizon of meanings and values; and thus will you be able the better to understand why such beings as Lucifer and Satan are permitted to continue in rebellion. You will also better comprehend how ultimate (if not immediate) good can be derived from time-limited evil. After you attain Paradise, you will really be enlightened and comforted when you listen to the superaphic philosophers discuss and explain these profound problems of universe adjustment. But even then, I doubt that you will be fully satisfied in your own minds. At least I was not even when I had thus attained the acme of universe philosophy. I did not achieve a full comprehension of these complexities until after I had been assigned to administrative duties in the superuniverse, where by actual experience I have acquired conceptual capacity adequate for the comprehension of such many-sided problems in cosmic equity and spiritual philosophy. As you ascend Paradiseward, you will increasingly learn that many problematic features of universe administration can only be comprehended subsequent to the acquirement of increased experiential capacity and to the achievement of enhanced spiritual insight. Cosmic wisdom is essential to the understanding of cosmic situations.
[Presented by a Mighty Messenger of experiential survival in the first system rebellion in the universes of time now attached to the superuniverse government of Orvonton and acting in this matter by request of Gabriel of Salvington.]
The above information on the Lucifer Rebellion is a quote from the Urantia book on pages 604 to 620.