The Rebellious Prince
The Story . . .
2 Samuel 13:1-18, 33
Absalom was the most handsome, cunning, and
ambitious of David's sons. The Bible says, "But in all Israel
there was none to be so much praised as Absalom for his
beauty: from the sole of his foot even to the crown of his head
there was no blemish in him." 2 Samuel 14:25.
But this determined young prince wanted more than just
the admiration of the people for his stunning appearance. He
wanted the power of his father's throne. He wanted to be
king of Israel-at any price. First
Absalom killed his older brother,
Amnon, after Amnon mistreated his
sister Tamar. Amnon was David's
firstborn son and in line to follow
David as king. Then, after Absalom
wormed his way back into his father's
favor, he began to sow subtle seeds of
doubt throughout the kingdom about
David's leadership, judgments, and laws
until he "stole the hearts of the men of
Israel." 2 Samuel 15:6.
Finally, his sinister plan erupted
into a full-blown rebellion as Absalom
tried to assassinate his own father and
kidnap the kingdom. David and his
followers were forced to flee from
Jerusalem. But after a severe battle a few days later, David
was once again secure on his throne, and handsome Prince
Absalom was slain.
A sad story indeed, but this was not the first such royal
family feud. In another great kingdom long ago, very similar
events led to the most tragic rebellion of all time.
The kingdom was called-heaven!
Fill in the blanks after reading each Bible text.
1. What was the name of the rebellious prince in heaven,
and why did he rebel?
Isaiah 14:12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O _______________,
son of the morning!
Isaiah 14:13, 14 For thou hast said in thine _______________, ... I
will be like the _______________ _______________.
Ezekiel 28:17 Thine heart was lifted up because of thy
_______________, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy
NOTE: Lucifer was the most powerful and beautiful of God's creatures. He was
the highest of the angels and most likely led the heavenly choir. But he allowed
his beauty to fill him with pride. (See supplement entitled "Satan Symbolized by
the Kings of Tyre and Babylon.")
2. Did God make a devil when He created Lucifer?
Ezekiel 28:15 Thou wast _______________ in thy ways from the day
that thou wast created, till _______________ was found in thee.
NOTE: God made a perfect angel who, of his own free will, chose to be a devil. It
may be hard to imagine, but if we knew Lucifer before his fall, we would have
loved him. We don't know exactly how long, but Lucifer may have joyfully served
God for eons before he began to cherish seeds of pride and resentment in his heart.
The Lord could have made all of His creatures like robots, but a robot cannot love.
True love must be willing to take risks. This is why parents decide to have children,
knowing that at some time they may choose to disobey. God allowed Lucifer to
carry out his rebellion for several reasons. First, to forever settle any question of
whether or not God makes His creatures with freedom of choice. Second, if God
had destroyed Lucifer as soon as he began spreading doubts about God's love and
government, the other intelligent creatures would have forever had lingering
questions. They might have thought, "Perhaps Lucifer was right." Therefore,
Lucifer was allowed to demonstrate the horrible results of sin. Finally, God does
not want His creatures to obey Him merely because He will punish them if they
don't. He wants us to obey from principles of love rather than from fear.
3. What finally happened?
Revelation 12:7 And there was _______________ in
_______________: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon;
and the _______________ fought and his angels.
NOTE: Eventually Lucifer and the angels who sided with him were expelled
4. What powerful beings work under the devil's command?
Revelation 12:4 And his tail drew the _______________ part of
the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth.
Revelation 12:9 He was cast out into the earth, and his
_______________ were cast out with him.
NOTE: Satan is so cunning that he was able to deceive one-third of the angels
of heaven into following him in his rebellion against God. Now called "devils"
and "demons," these fallen angels carry out Satan's plans. In our story of
Absalom, we notice that he likewise did very little of his own dirty work.
Absalom ordered his servants to execute his wishes.
2 Samuel 13:28 Now Absalom had commanded his servants, saying, Mark ye now
when Amnon's heart is merry with wine, ... then kill him, fear not: have not I
2 Samuel 14:30 Therefore he said unto his servants, See, Joab's field is near mine,
... go and set it on fire.
5. What methods does Satan use in his work?
A. Revelation 12:9 Satan, which _______________ the whole world.
B. Mark 1:13 And he was there in the wilderness forty days,
_______________ of Satan.
C. Revelation 16:14 For they are the spirits of devils, working
D. Revelation 12:10 For the _______________ of our brethren is
cast down, which _______________ them before our God day
E. John 8:44 He was a _______________ from the beginning. ...
For he is a _______________, and the father of it.
NOTE: In one respect, Satan has an advantage over God in the battle between
good and evil. God uses only truth, but Satan can use truth or lies in any
combination, to best serve his purposes. (See supplement entitled "Expect
6. When is the devil most dangerous?
2 Corinthians 11:14, 15 And no marvel; for Satan himself is
transformed into an _______________ of _______________.
NOTE: Just as the devil did, Absalom pretended to love the people and
displayed an interest in their welfare in order to deceive them.
2 Samuel 15:5, 6 And it was so, that when any man came nigh to him to do him
obeisance, he put forth his hand, and took him, and kissed him. And on this
manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king for judgment: so Absalom
stole the hearts of the men of Israel.
Satan is most dangerous when he poses as a spiritual being working inside the
church. (See supplement entitled "A Brilliant Angel.")
7. Does Satan know the Bible?
Matthew 4:5, 6 Then the devil ... saith unto him, If thou be the Son of
God, cast thyself down: for it is _______________, He shall give his
angels charge concerning thee.
NOTE: The devil is an expert at quoting and misquoting the Bible for the
purpose of deceiving people. That is why it is essential that God's people know
the Scriptures for themselves to avoid being misled.
8. Whom on earth does the devil hate most?
Revelation 12:17 And the dragon was wroth with the
_______________, and went to make war with the
_______________ of her seed, which keep the commandments of God,
and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
9. What two deadly animals does the Bible use to portray
1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a
roaring _______________, walketh about, seeking whom he may
Revelation 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old
_______________, called the Devil, and Satan.
NOTE: Both lions and snakes use stealth and diversion to capture their prey.
Like the devil, they spring suddenly upon their victims and are ruthless and
indifferent to suffering.
10. What is the only way we can resist Satan?
James 4:7, 8 _______________ yourselves therefore to God.
Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. _______________
_______________ to God, and he will draw nigh to you.
NOTE: The best ways to draw near to God are through prayer and seeking to
know Him through His Word.
11. How did Jesus fight the assaults of the devil?
Matthew 4:10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan:
for _______________ _______________ _______________.
Ephesians 6:17 The sword of the Spirit, which is the
_______________ of _______________.
Hebrews 4:12 For the _______________ of God is quick, and
powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword.
NOTE: Our only safety from Satan's clever deceptions is in storing God's Word
in our minds to keep us from sin. The same tools Jesus used to fight the devil
are needed and available to us today.
Psalm 119:11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Ephesians 6:11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against
the wiles of the devil.
12. How will the final fate of Satan resemble that of Absalom?
2 Samuel 18:17 And they took Absalom, and cast him into a great
_______________ in the wood.
Isaiah 14:15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides
of the _______________.
13. Will Satan ever reappear to tempt God's people?
Ezekiel 28:19 Never shalt thou be _______________
Nahum 1:9 Affliction shall not rise up the _______________
14. How does God feel about the destruction of the wicked?
Ezekiel 33:11 Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord God, I have
no _______________ in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked
_______________ from his way and _______________: turn ye, turn
ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die?
15. How did David respond when he learned that his
rebellious son Absalom had been slain?
2 Samuel 18:33 And the king was much _______________, and
went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept: and as he went, thus he
said, O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had
_______________ _______________ _______________,
O Absalom, my son, my son!
This touching picture displays how our heavenly Father feels about His lost
children. Not only was He willing to die in our place; He went one step
further-He gave His greatest gift, His Son! God is not willing that any should
perish. He is desperate for you to be saved. This is why Jesus died in your place.
Most of the world has joined Satan in rebellion against the heavenly Father.
Will you choose now to love and serve Him?
This section provides additional information for further study.
Satan Symbolized by the Kings of Tyre and Babylon
In Isaiah 14:4-15, the Bible uses the king of Babylon as a symbol of
Satan, and in Ezekiel 28:11-19, Satan is symbolized by the king of Tyre.
In both cases we know that the symbolism goes beyond earthly kings
because God's description of the being could not apply to any mortal man.
Notice the ways Lucifer (now called Satan) is described in these passages of
- fell from heaven (Isaiah 14:12)
- was full of wisdom and perfect in beauty (Ezekiel 28:12)
- had been in Eden (verse 13)
- every precious stone was his covering (verse 13)
- was the anointed cherub that covereth (verse 14)
- was upon the holy mountain of God (verse 14)
- was perfect in his ways (verse 15)
Since the kings of Babylon and Tyre exhibited the same policies and
suffered the same complete destruction as will Satan's kingdom, God used
them to represent Satan himself. Virtually all Bible authorities are in
agreement on the symbolism. Incidentally, the Bible records many other
references to Lucifer (see Luke 4:5, 6; 10:18; John 8:44; 2 Peter 2:4; 1 John
3:8; Jude 6; Revelation 12:7-9), but without Ezekiel 28 and Isaiah 14, we
would not have the complete history.
Expect the Unexpected
Many people expect Satan to openly appear as God's enemy in the end
time, but this is not so. Satan is indeed God's bitterest enemy, but his
approach will be to feign righteousness (Matthew 24:24). He can appear as a
glorious, angelic being (2 Corinthians 11:13-15) and will seek the worship of
people (Revelation 13:12). Scripture is clear that his godly front will be so
convincing that "all the world" will wonder after the beast (Revelation 13:3).
Talk about a tragedy! Satan will be so effective in posing as Christ that
virtually the entire world will follow him, thinking all the time that they are
following Jesus. Will you be deceived? Not if you heed the Bible warnings
presented in this series.
A Brilliant Angel
Satan is delighted when people portray him as an ugly, red, bat-winged
creature that is part-man and part-beast, having split hooves and a long,
pointed tail, or carrying a pitchfork and stoking the fires of hell. Nothing
could be further from the truth. Such concepts come from Greek mythology.
No such nonsense can be found in Scripture. The Bible describes Satan as a
brilliant, highly attractive angel with an uncanny ability to communicate. He
is also well acquainted with Scripture (Matthew 4:5, 6). The devil is a selfproclaimed
enemy of God whose aim is to defame His character and capture
His kingdom. Satan also despises you and your loved ones and has plans to
destroy you. This series will help you understand his plans and learn how to
thwart them. Just place your life in the protective care of your mighty
Saviour, and pray earnestly for His guidance.