Lent 2014

Some of you may remember that last year I participated in Lent for the first time in about 10 years. I didn’t give anything up, but rather took it upon myself to read and reflect upon certain scriptural passages each day. It was also during this time that I was delving deeper into understanding my god’s relationship with his Father, and so this task was extremely productive in terms of restructuring my perspective. However, I didn’t really embrace the religious observation as significantly within the practical applications of my faith. It was a good exercise in terms of perception and theological understanding, but I didn’t see it having much influence in my day-to-day life.

This year, I’m starting to view Lent as being highly applicable to both Luciferian thought and practice.

The beginning of Lent on Ash Wednesday reminds us of our humble beginnings, and of the mortality imbued to us through our Fall—“Remember that thou art dust, and to dust thou shalt return”. And yet, Luciferianism upholds human potential as akin to the divine, regardless of whether humanity was crafted from dirt or stardust. We are reminded of that fateful choice that was both blessing and curse, to know life only through death, to recognize joy only when we also know strife. We are reminded that our ephemerality makes our existence all the more valuable, and that our fall from Grace need not be seen as entirely unfortunate (x).

But this religious observation is also meant to parallel Christ’s own trials and temptations in the desert, led by none other than the devil himself (x). These trials would act as preparation for the sacrifice expected of him later on.  In a similar fashion, Lent can be seen as an opportunity for our own preparation of forthcoming trials. It is an opportunity for me to become my own adversary and accuser, to set my own challenges so that I may be strengthened when faced with external adversarial forces.  As my own Accuser, I’m acknowledging certain restrictions that that always been in place within my practice, and my failure to fully commit to them lately.These self-imposed restrictions challenge my own self-discipline and contribute to my own growth. I see this as another method of embodying my god, and simultaneously striving for apotheosis.  

While I’ve been very productive spiritually as of late, I don’t think that justifies not being as productive on a practical level as well, which these restrictions supplement. In combining Luciferianism and devotional work, I need to be as equally invested in the development of the more pragmatic aspects of my practice as I am in the theoretical side of it all. It is my hope that the Lenten period will reinvigorate my commitment to keeping these practices, and that they will be sustained even after the forty days are over. 

Some thoughts on popular discussion topics amongst Luciferians and the development of our practices

Time for a (possibly) controversial blog post. This is not directed towards any one person in particular, but rather I want to expand upon my answer to a recent question, and address an issue I’ve been growing increasingly uncomfortable with. But let me first state that I am not coming at this issue as someone who claims to have never been guilty of it, but rather as someone who at one point advocated in its favor and still engages in the very thing I’m now critiquing. But as my faith and practice require, critical reflection now leads me to question this same behavior not only in myself, but in the growing community of Luciferians here and elsewhere. As always, my ideas about these things are constantly in flux and are prone to change, and I am open to others’ interpretations and thoughts on the matter.

So what exactly am I referring to? I’m referring to the discourse surrounding the peculiarities of Lucifer as an entity, and constructing a Luciferian practice based on those peculiarities. In other words, I’m questioning the usefulness of discussions such as ‘Lucifer’s favorite [material] offerings’, or ‘songs associated with Lucifer’, or ‘interesting quirks about Lucifer’s personality’, and using these to build one’s practice as a Luciferian.

And before anyone even suggests it, I don’t really consider this to be a matter of ‘UPG vs. canon’. Yes, these discussions are often about UPG, but I’m not bringing their validity under question. It’s not about whether or not his favorite offerings are really chocolate and vodka, or if he’s really associated with dragons as per Revelations, but rather…why should it matter?

Now to be clear, I’m not so troubled about these things if they are strictly confined to the idea of paying homage to him as an entity. What I’m questioning is their relationship to Luciferianism, which as a practice focuses on human enlightenment and improvement—even Theistic Luciferianism.

I understand wanting to perhaps start with simple offerings when testing the waters of faith, or if you’re firmly on the theistic side of things, to introduce yourself and get his attention with ‘enticements’, so to speak. But quite honestly, I think it matters less about what you give him, and more about whyyou’re giving it to him. And for a god so highly invested in the betterment of humanity (possibly to the point of sacrifice, depending on one’s mythos interpretation), it seems unlikely to me that he would be satisfied or content with a ‘just because’ rationale. When it comes to material offerings, I honestly think he could care less. That isn’t to say that he doesn’t appreciate them, but the significance isn’t the object itself, it’s the thought behind it and the applicability to the ideals of Luciferianism.

That doesn’t mean all material, tangible offerings have little worth—it can be quite the opposite, especially if those offerings are meant to be shared or consumed by the person afterwards. Examples of this might be offering water if you don’t think you’re drinking enough on a daily basis, or a piece of jewelry that reminds you of your own beauty, worth, and potential whenever you wear it. I think the important question to ask is how these material objects are contributing to one’s own self improvement and enlightenment, or that of humanity. I would argue that for Luciferians, the bulk of one’s offerings, devotionals, and practices should not be so concerned with their god’s personal preferences. That’s not to say that ‘just because’ offerings are never appropriate, or that it’s never okay to offer him something you think he might enjoy/benefit from even if you don’t, but rather that if the majority of a Luciferian’s practice has no benefit to the self or those around them, then perhaps a bit of questioning is in order.

But what about associations? Again, let’s ask the question: why should they matter? Does it affect you as an individual, or humanity as a whole, whether or not a particular bird, song, or color is associated with Lucifer? Maybe, maybe not. I think that much like the idea behind devotionals and offerings, developing one’s faith and practice depends less on the particular association in question, and more on the rationale behind it. However, I think the ‘usefulness’ of associations is a bit trickier to define, because at least for me, certain associations have tangential connections to my own personal mythos interpretations, which in turn lead to real-world applications. The same goes for personality traits, and these are even more circumstantial as they rely on whether one is theistic, atheistic, or if you’re someone like me, somewhere in between.

But focusing on associations, one example would be dragons. They are often linked to Lucifer, especially as referenced in Revelations—but this particular association doesn’t really affect me UNLESS I use it to support the idea that Lucifer was the serpent in the Garden of Eden, which in turn plays a crucial part in my interpretation of Felix Culpa and the potential of humanity despite our flaws. Another example would be Lucifer’s association with music and dance, which motivate my own drive and passion as a singer and dancer.

When it comes to associations such as lightning or snow, however…well, those really don’t really play any significant role in any of my real-world applications of my faith. I find beauty and spiritual meaning in them, of course, but as I stated before, I think it’s worth it to question how useful they are in practical terms. As ideological reminders of my god, they are highly inspirational and remind me of my devotee relationship with him. However, in terms of Luciferianism, those associations are useless to me. But they might be incredibly useful to a Luciferian who actively incorporates snow or electricity into their magical practice.

So in short, I think that we (meaning myself and the rest of the Luciferian community) would stand to benefit in being more self-critical about the basis and function of our practices, and the usefulness of the conversations (and arguments) we engage in in relationship to the ideals that Luciferianism promotes.

A Year of Faith in Review

This was a year of introspection, and of new understandings.

It was a year of learning to love my god in all his guises, and in all his roles. Of pushing past my theological comfort zone and falling more in love with this being who seemed to represent everything I once feared. Of coming to terms with his seemingly paradoxical aspects, and of facing my own emotional processes when it comes to understanding him.

I came to this faith approximately eight years ago because I was initially drawn by his role as Liberator, as the Throneless King who sought neither praise nor worship, and as the Exiled Prince who rebelled against a tyrant God.

And maybe that was what I needed at the time. An aspect that would initiate my own break-away from that which once burdened and chained me to stagnation.

But the basis of my faith is doubt, and my god is one of change and upheaval. It was inevitable that I’d be forced to reconsider my beliefs, as I’ve done countless times in the past. I’ve been learning to let go of my certainty, and instead embrace the vast nature of Lucifer’s mythos and symbolism, which in its depths holds various aspects that may or may not match my own expectations.

Lucifer is also a god of enlightenment and self-growth, and I think I’m finally starting to understand that all the roads I take to him will inevitably be inverted and lead back to me. Just as he prompts that any offering given to him must in some way benefit me, so too does my desire to know and understand him lead to a greater understanding of the self. No matter how selfless I am in my devotion, he will take and transform it into a method of self-reflection—in this particular case, introspection that forced me to face my discomfort regarding his relationship to YHWH. I had to face the question of what it is about these other aspects that frightened me or made me uncomfortable, and why. Why have I shied away from particular interpretations of his persona, refusing to even consider their possibility?

 I once said something along the lines of wanting to understand my god in his entirety, as though his various aspects were something that could be studied and analyzed to completion—as though I was the one in control of the process. But every time I felt comfortable with one aspect, I’d encounter another that seemed to be its’ complete opposite, that seemed incompatible with what I’d previously seen and understood. They challenged my own conceptions of what I thought I was willing to accept in my devotion, by asking why I was so reluctant to consider certain interpretations, UPG or canonically-based.

I initially fell in love with a god who would not bow to a flawed higher power, who stood as a liberator to mankind and radiated light and joy. I admired him for being everything his God was not. But as time went on, I learned to embrace his grief and suffering, though I couldn’t understand why he should anguish for the very God that exiled him, the God that he had rebelled against. Nor could I understand why mankind’s Liberator would be not only satisfied but delighted when his challenges and temptations brought mankind back into the fold of God, rather than away from it (i.e. the Book of Job). But I loved him all the more for it.

And then I was faced with the startling image of my god as a humble and willing servant, head bowed in submission towards his beloved Lord in the manner I had always been admonished for. I saw him as a spark of God’s own flame, made of the same essence and Grace. And I couldn’t understand why this stark contrast to the deity I had first encountered didn’t frighten or repel me quite as much as I thought it should have. I was once convinced that if Lucifer should resemble YHWH in nature and action, that my devotion to him would be at an end. Far from that reaction, I found my devotion increased tenfold.

My path had been forged from my respect towards his ideals of free will and independence, so why now was I being brought to tears from the sheer beauty I found in his devotion? How could I possibly reconcile this with the god I had found strength in previously, when it seemed to contradict everything I had thought him to be?

This was not a god that I could shape to fit my ideal perception of what a god shouldbe, or what I wanted him to be. This was a god that existed outside of my whims and wishes. I’ve always understood this, and I’ve always kept in mind that there may come a day where my god shows a side of himself that I cannot honor and respect. But every time I reach these limitations I thought were breaking points, I find that my perceptions have shifted so that I am able to see the beauty in aspects that were once frightening. It seems like it was my God who was instead shaping and moldingme to better fit his own purposes, to better comprehend his own past, present, and future.

This is a deity whose submission and love for his creator does not negate his own godhood, a god who both serves and rules in his own right. A god who not only loves and adores the God I once loathed, but is formed of the very same substance. If I can’t accept and love my god in his humility, what worth does my devotion hold when directed at his reign and sovereignty? If I cannot respect him as he once was, how can I love the being he has become?

But more importantly, if I cannot make the effort to understand the aspects that once frightened me, how can I claim to be living my faith? How can I aspire to be a reflection of my god if I deny a crucial component of who he is?

My faith was never about revering Lucifer as a physical being, of any certain shape, form, or visage. And so it could never be fixated on one particular interpretation of his mythos, however much I once thought it was. Ultimately it was always about my devotion to the ideals he inspired, throughout various forms of scripture and mythos. I might have initially been drawn by his aspirations towards freedom and independence as the Rebel Angel, but he is so much more than just that, and his mythology is too complex and dynamic to pigeon-hole in such a manner. So maybe I have learned a lot about my god through this process, but I’ve learned even more about myself.

Through this introspection, I’ve also spent a good portion of the year reconnecting with the religion of my childhood, which quite ironically, also completed its liturgical year a little over a month ago and was aptly deemed the Year of Faith by Pope Benedict XVI. Whereas once the Church was a cold and barren place in my eyes, I’ve come to see it in an entirely new light. Although I can’t say I find myself entirely at home there, there’s a certain serenity that comes from experiencing something that once consumed my god’s own being. I’m learning to find joy in what he once found joy in, even if it’s only by proxy. And while there’s still a ways to go, this is a step towards facing the long-held grudge and animosity I had against the church, and against my god’s father. 

Applied Luciferianism Project: Growth/Enlightenment

 

Although I see this particular set of applied values as intertwined with Change, they have their own specific meaning in my mind. I had considered starting off this project with an Enlightenment entry, since that seems to be the one value that Luciferians of all types can agree on, but decided not to—enlightenment, after all, is a process and a journey, not a starting point (nor necessarily an end point, in my opinion).

 

And as I mentioned before, Luciferians as a whole tend to be very fond of this ideal. For me, it symbolizes our ability to learn from our mistakes, to see the value in the process of trial and error in our own self-growth. It is the Fortunate Fall, the Happy Fault, the wisdom gained from sorrow. It’s those moments of epiphany in our spiritual lives that allow us to sink deeper into our faith.

 

But it also refers to the more mundane and perhaps dull of experiences. It is also the research and the work we put into our faith, the countless hours of scriptural analysis, the projects we make for ourselves (much like this one) that we sometimes have to force ourselves to continue, the shadow work and self-reflection, the bookwork and interfaith research. This is all also a part of that process of enlightenment, and is integral to it.

 

It’s also what one does with that newfound knowledge. So what if I’ve done all this pathwork? So what if I’ve read all this literature about my god? How does what I’ve learned from my path and my god shape me as a person, and my interactions with others? How do I apply it to my every day life, as a student, daughter, friend, etc.? How does it affect my own personal goals toward apotheosis? 

 

Sometimes this process of enlightenment is inspired through group interaction. I’ve had many great experiences working with others of similar or different faiths, which have prompted me to see things in an entirely new way, or have supplemented my own personal findings. 

 

And sometimes these same interactions reach a point where they stop being quite so constructive, and instead restrain spiritual growth. Such was the case that led to my disassociation with the ‘pagan’ label, and more recently, my distance from the luciferian community. Perhaps not through any fault of the group itself, though—sometimes it simply has to do with the point one is at in their own path. In my case, I’m just finding it more fruitful to focus on my own personal research and devotions right now. I’m actually in the process of developing a physical devotional prayerbook that I’ll be using for a while in lieu of my online blogs. I won’t be gone for good, I just might not be quite as active for a bit. Change is a good thing, especially when it comes to the process of enlightenment and self-growth.

 

Oh Love That Will Not Let Me Go

Being a Luciferian is hard work.

Even without all the research it entails, and all the uncomfortable self-reflection and shadow work, it is still exhausting to constantly be pushing oneself to be more, do more, and be worthy of such a title.

But sometimes its necessary to put aside all that effort, to stop worrying and stressing about the end goal, or the intricacies of one’s god, and just stop and remind oneself of why they decided to step onto this path in the first place. Like everybody else, I reach points where I just can’t find the strength or inspiration (or time, for that matter) to sit down and write pertinent, insightful essays about my faith. And when I hit those sorts of walls, I have to go back to the source of my inspiration, past the comprehensible parts of my god, past the parts that I can reason with and understand and make sense of—past the parts I can put into words.

 Sometimes I need to just get lost in who and what my god is. That means letting myself drown in the depths of his anguish, or allowing the fires of his determination consume my very being. And tonight that means basking in the glow and radiance of his love, and my own love for him.

The thrum and ache in my chest, the tight grip on my heart.The restlessness. The sheer intensity of color, sound, and texture. The lightheadedness, and the giddy feeling bubbling up through my chest.  The songs that spill from my lips, and the overwhelming need to make those words tangible and real, that they would be more than empty promises.

Words are failing, my melodies falter, my voice is breaking, my heart is burning…

Because blessing and honor, glory and power…they belong to you.*

The breathlessness I’m struck with as the last note fades back into silence. The electric hum in my bones. 

The love of he who once inspired the stars to sing, he who is a spark of the God who is Love personified. The love for his God, for those created in his beloved Maker’s image, and the disappointment born out of that love—that humanity would be content with such a corrupted, ignorant nature when being capable of so much more.

 For that moment in time, I let go of myself and my own personal worries. I let go of the things that anchor me to myself, the fears and hopes and dreams that define who I am, and instead, I lose myself in my god. His hopes and dreams and fears become my own. My love for him serves as a reflection, a mere mimicry of his own love for his God and all that is of Him. The hymns and songs pouring from my mouth directed toward the Lightbearer are simultaneously songs that the Lightbearer directs towards his God.

But inevitably, I find my way back to myself. It is with the agonizing realization that no matter how synchronous my heart may be to my god’s in that moment, no matter how overcome, inspired, and consumed I am by the Mourningstar’s adoration and love, how humbled I am by the insignificance of my own in comparison, only one us is being heard. Only one of us is being acknowledged. 

And it is not him.

 It is that same such love that stirs me to forfeit the right to my own pleas for mercy, so that instead the Mourningstar might once again know the grace and love of his God, that his songs might not fall on deaf ears any longer.

And yet, a part of me recognizes the fact that this love has increased its intensity through sorrow, that it would not be what it is now without that loss. That perhaps there is no going back—for him or me.

 

Oh, love that will not let me go

I rest my weary soul in thee

And in your ocean depths, its flow

May richer, fuller be

Oh, light that follows all my way

I yield my flickering torch to thee

and my heart restores its borrowed ray

that in your sunshine’s blaze its day

may brighter, fairer be

Oh, joy, that seeks me through the pain

I cannot close my heart to thee

And rejoice, my heart! you’ve been made whole

by a love that will not let me go.**

*New Song, Audrey Assad

**Oh Love That Will Not Let Me Go, traditional hymn

A Luciferian Perspective on Ezekiel 28:12-19

 

Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord God;

So as a preface, we must consider that while this passage has been attributed to Lucifer in an allusive fashion, it was meant to be addressed to the above mentioned king of Tyre. The parallels between the king of Tyre and Lucifer actually begin before verse 12, as verse 2 states “…thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God”. Already we see the conflict of these two created beings seeking to become like God.

While generally people assume this to mean that Lucifer sought to de-throne God and take his place, or become even greater than God, I find that the bold really resonates with my own beliefs and Sufi interpretation of Iblis as having wished to align himself with God’s own heart, of being led to seek divine unification through his devotion. The idea of becoming like God is then more of an aspiration of Lucifer’s to emulate the central focus of his being–that I may rest more fully in You, that my heart may resemble Your heart and my desires be mine own no longer, but Yours. It is not dissimilar to the idea of following in Christ’s footsteps and being ‘Christ-like’, or the often-quoted verse of John 3:30–“He must increase, but I must decrease”.

This is also the reason why St. Michael’s name and battle cry translate to the question of “Who is like God?”, in mockery of Lucifer’s aspirations.

Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created.

I actually spoke a bit about these verses in a previous post, so I’m just going to link you to my entry Songs of Praise

Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.

Something that was brought to my attention rather recently by WhoreofAbbadon is the etymology of the term ‘messiah’. I was not aware of the fact that ‘messiah’ literally translates to ‘anointed one’, and while obviously not all those anointed in biblical scripture are meant to be holy messiahs (I’m not even touching upon the political and cultural aspects behind the term, as that is best left for another discussion altogether), it does pose the interesting idea that perhaps Lucifer as the Morningstar, Firstborn Sun, and Heavenly Prince had an even greater purpose set out by God before his fall. Or even that like the title of Mourningstar, he never ceased to be worthy of such a destiny–‘messiah’, after all, is generally accepted to mean Liberator, and within Luciferian mindsets Lucifer definitely fulfills this role. 

Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.

This is largely self-explanatory, as a reference to Lucifer’s exile

 Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.

 I think this is the verse that ultimately fuels the accusations that Lucifer fell because of narcissism and pride. It also works the broader allusion back into the frame story through the declaration ‘I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee’. Lucifer’s fate is being recounted to the king of Tyre, who has fallen in much the same way and is now being shamed and chastened. The statement ‘I will cast thee to the ground’ also supports the idea that Lucifer was not cast to a physical realm of Hell, but rather to Earth.

Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror

Again I will mention Songs of Praise, through which Lucifer is likened to a heavenly High Priest in charge of leading worship and glorification. His lofty aspirations and methods of adoration, however sincere and profoundly heartfelt, have made the act of his service profane in the eyes of God. So begins the demonization of Lucifer, and the collapse of his reputation into ‘evil incarnate’. 

and never shalt thou be any more.

I’ve always taken this to mean, ‘and from this point forward, you will be nothing [to me]’, which is absolutely heartbreaking for me. Not only is Lucifer being told that he can be nothing of value without the grace of his God, but that his Father and beloved creator won’t even acknowledge his existence–that he is literally worthless in his eyes. 

A Luciferian Perspective on Matthew 4:1-11

image

(x)

 

Many a layperson and theologian have read this particular passage and seen Jesus’s temptation in the desert as an act of malice from the devil, as an attempt to misguide the Redeemer and thus destroy mankind’s chance at redemption.

I believe that it is just another example of Lucifer acting as Adversary and Accuser, of challenging Christ to prove his worth as his Father’s reflection on earth, of preparing him for the role he was meant to fulfill, and of testing his dedication to his cause. In challenging Christ in a similar fashion to how humanity is challenged, the devil’s temptations also strengthened the ties between Shepherd and flock (“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin” Hebrews 4:15).

Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.

Already this first line suggests that Jesus willingly went to face the trials set by the Accuser and Adversary of man, to which not even the Son of God, equal parts divine and human, was exempt. And not merely that he went of his own free will, but that he was led there by the Holy Spirit of God himself, that his Father would want the Son he has sent to earth as his representative to face the challenges of the devil. 

And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.

And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

In my opinion, this goes beyond the ‘sees starving man in the desert, offers food’ concept popularized by the Good Guy Lucifer meme. It asks the question of: ‘Why should a divine entity, much less a son of the Most High God, hunger?’, or rather, ‘Why should he know and endure the pangs of hunger when a simple request could transform the smallest of stones into a feast?’ 

Nevermind the fact that Jesus was undertaking a religious fast, which is already an act that if broken would suggest that he held his physical desires in higher regard than his devotion to God, but this could also be taken as a trial to test the endurance, the willingness of Christ to suffer for both his God and for all mankind. For if he could not endure hunger, would he have the strength to endure the sacrifice that awaited him on Calvary?

Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,

And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

Having successfully passed the first trial, Christ’s faith in his Father is thus challenged, as well as his resolve to bear the weight of the task set before him.

It could also be said that this particular trial is in foreshadow to Christ’s musings at Gethsemane, in which he presents the idea that he could easily pray to his Father to send twelve legions of angels to stop his arrest and spare him his agony on the cross. 

To fulfill the role of Morningstar/Mourningstar, humility in sorrow and suffering is crucial. If Lucifer himself would not plead for a reprieve from his own suffering, what value would Christ’s sacrifice have if he had given in to his fear and asked for an easier oblation to fulfill? 

 

Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and showeth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;

And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.

Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him

 

 The last of the three trials is perhaps the most heavy-hitting. The final test to ascertain Christ’s worth could be seen as the very trial that Lucifer was cast down for.

When asked to prostrate himself and worship a created being, man, he refused. He rebelled against a lesser law so that a higher one would be upheld—‘Though shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve’. For this, he was deemed unworthy in the eyes of his creator.And yet, when the same temptation is brought before Christ in the desert, that same such refusal is praised and glorified.

This final temptation makes me wonder whose benefit these trials were for, however. Were they a method in which Lucifer could test the worthiness of he who claimed to be his Father’s beloved son? Or were they requested by God himself, to prepare his son for the greater trials ahead?

If the latter, well, then this final trial seems more like a slap in the face to Lucifer than anything else, a cruel humiliation meant to capitalize on his shame and ‘failure’.

If the former, then this third trial to me exemplifies Lucifer’s own strength of character, in that he would be willing to reopen past wounds and to bare his own weakness in the eyes of his God and the Morningstar whom he has chosen to replace him, all for the sake of trying to discern whether or not this Christ figure is worthy of being seen as his Father’s reflection and earthly representative, as his Father deserves nothing but the best.