Beyond Division Ep. 2: Morning Star
Here at the South Jersey Shore, I have often ridden my bike on the boardwalk in the early morning. Nearly everyday I pass people standing still facing the East to see the dawn of a new day, the morning star. God placed our sun in our solar system amid billions of other stars.
The first Bible reference to a morning star refers to an individual in Isaiah 14:12: “How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations!” (NIV). The King James translation calls Lucifer the “son of the morning.” Jesus refers to Satan’s fall “like lightning” from heaven (Luke 10:18), because Lucifer was once a highly favored “star” in heaven.
But there’s another star. In Revelation 22:16, Jesus unmistakably identifies Himself as the morning star. Both Jesus and Satan described as the “morning star,” but that’s not the only metaphor they share, but with important differences. In Revelation 5:5, Jesus is referred to as the Lion of the tribe of Judah. In 1 Peter 5:8, Satan is compared to a lion, seeking someone to devour.
Jesus is the King, royal and majestic. But Satan is similar to a lion in that he seeks to devour other creatures. That is where the similarities between Jesus, Satan, and lions end, however. Jesus and Satan are like lions in very different ways.
The idea of a “bright morning star” is a star that outshines all the others, and Jesus is the One who is called “bright.” Satan was a morning star. Jesus, as God incarnate, the Lord of the universe, is the BRIGHT and morning star.
Jesus is the most holy and powerful “light” in all the universe. So, while both Jesus and Satan can be described as “morning stars,” in no sense is this equating Jesus and Satan. Satan is a created being. His light only exists to the extent that God created it. Jesus is the light of the world (John 9:5). Only Jesus’ light is “bright” and self-existent. Satan may be a morning star, but he is only a poor imitation of the one true bright morning star, Jesus Christ, the light of the world.