Is Heaven all Good?


#1

If Heaven is all good, eternal happiness, and no conflict, how did the ArchAngel fall with greed?


#2

I assume by “the Archangel” you refer to Lucifer…
There’s debate over whether Lucifer was an Archangel or Sepahim, but I don’t know enough to get into that anyway.

Yes, Heaven is all good. However, the angels were not created in Heaven (properly speaking). Rather, they entered into Heaven and Hell immediately upon making their decision to either serve God or reject Him… a decision that was made within mere moments of their creation.

When we talk about how the angels “fell from heaven”, it’s a bit more symbolic than literal. They fell from their superior created state, and were “cast down out of the heavens”… hence the imagery in Revelation of the dragon sweeping down 1/3 of the stars from the sky.


#3

If the angels had seen God in all his glory, they would have been unable to choose evil. IMHO God withheld some of his glory from them to enable them to freely choose Him. It also appears that the angels who chose God became His instruments of judgement on the evil ones, forcing them into hell. We think of hell as a place, but angels are pure spirits so it might be more accurate to think of it as a state of being. I believe the angels’ sin was one of pride and disobedience.

I didn’t look at the catechism tonight about this, so it’s just my speculation.


#4

You can find the answer in the 12th chapter of Revelation. I think that you find that the woman about to deliver represents the faithful in fleshly Israel under the old covenant and continued to be the faithful in true spiritual Israel under the new covenant. It tells us who the dragon is. It was his influence through Herod the Great that tried to kill Jesus shortly after he was born. The man child that the woman delivered was Jesus who ascended to God’s throne after his resurrection.

In previous times as in Job 1:6-12 Satan had access to heaven and God. The weapon that could defeat him, the blood of Christ, had not yet been shed. Jesus could see it coming when in John 12:31-32 he spoke of his being lifted up (to the cross) and “the prince of this world” being cast out. Verse 10 of Rev. 12 shows that the time of Satan’s casting out of Heaven was the beginning of the church or kingdom. He and his angels were not yet cast into the lake of fire, but on to the earth. The lake of fire comes into play at the judgment in Rev. 20.


#5

Why would Lucifer chose to rebel?

Look at him. The most beautiful of all creation. What was his problem?

It was suggested that once he understood that, while he was made of spirit by God, but Adam was made also of spirit but in the image of God, he raged in jealosy. Adam had the image of the Creator within himself. Adam and all mankind were to be co-heirs with the Son. And basically, Lucifer was still just a messager boy with wings.

Vanity of pride. And the free will to take it on. He wanted more than what God gave him. And so he was thrown down for it.

Like a jealous kid, he set out to take away the gift of image and Eden from Adam. Make things even.

How angry he must have been. His sin had no salvation plan. But, for our sin, God’s own Son died.


#6

So if there was a battle in Heaven, then we can assume that there can actually be a negative thought in Heaven. This actually implies the we do in fact maintain our FREE will once we die. Why wouldn’t have lucifer have been purified before going into heaven and seeing the face of God?


#7

God always existed onto Himself before Heaven and Earth and the rest of Creation were “created”. There is also a concept of paradise that is associated with Heaven but is not really fully “heaven” in the proper sense that we think of it.

So one of the prior posters had it correct. The Angles in the instant of their creation made the decision to serve God or reject God. But in that instant of creation none were yet in the full communion with God through the beatific vision and therefor were not really fully in “heaven proper” until the decision was made to be obedient to God in that one decisive instant. The Angels that rejected God essentially manifest and cast themselves into Hell in the same instant of their creation and rejection while fully aware that they were doomed to eternal punishment. They deliberately chose eternal punishment over eternal service and purpose and fulfillment in and to God. Their pride and contempt is so profound that if God gave them the choice for mercy they would still reject mercy and stay in hell. In fact their very spiritual nature makes it impossible for them to have a reason to change their decision to reject God - it is their nature to be decisive and unchangeable. Those angels that fell became what we now call demons of hell and these consciously elected that state of existence rather than serve God for all eternity.

Most of us human beings can not fathom just how profoundly evil these demons are since we are bathed in God’s constant universal grace that beckons us toward salvation. We simply can’t comprehend that kind of evil while we experience the goodness of God’s love; a condition we irreverently and unthanfully take for granted. But a being that willfully cuts itself off fully from God’s grace (as in hell) loses all good that come from God’s grace and loathes its very existence and the existence of all other beings and especially good things that remind it of what it could have been.

The only reason that humans do not become utterly evil like the demons when we commit a grave sin is that while we have the grace of mortal life we still have an opportunity to repent while we are alive (due to God’s ever beckoning universal grace). In essence we humans are in our “moment of creation” and are making our decisions for or against God just like all the angles did. But at the instant of human death and God’s final judgement those humans dieing impenitent in grave sin are cut off completely from God’s loving grace and become just like the fallen angels. Such become the offspring of Satan and are not of God. But those who put their trust in Jesus and obey Him and receive His graces and forgiveness through His Church become God’s children and will be permitted to enter the beatific vision after final purification if necessary.

The bottom line is that the disobedient Angles were not ever permitted to possess the full manifestation of heaven and were never permitted to commune with God in the Beatific Vision - they were only given an awareness or visions of it sufficient for them to decide their fate. Those angles that did not rebel were then permitted in the instant of their acceptance of God to have full access to heaven and the beatific vision. Therefor scripture is consistent - nothing impure may enter heaven.

James


#8

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