Christian Mysticism/evil


QUESTION: What is the connection or difference between
satan and lucifer?

ANSWER: Hi, Jennifer

Here's the short answer: practically speaking, they are the same. Satan is more properly a title, meaning adversary or by extension, accuser.

Lucifer is often considered the name of the Angel who rebelled and became the adversary or Satan.

However, Lucifer (light bringer), is also found as an appellation, either by the person or others about the person who is or thinks themselves to be powerful. And so the king of Babylon is referred to as such.

Thus, rather than a name as we use that term, it may well be a descriptive title. Jesus is referred to as the morning star and so the title itself isn't good or bad.

In its negative connotation, the name seems to refer to a usurper or someone "too big for his britches." In its positive connotation, it refers to someone who brings light. The context tells us which is which.

So to sum up, Lucifer is often thought to be the name of an Angel who attempted to usurp God's position, lost, and became the adversary or Satan.

However, Lucifer or its etymological equivalents, is used in other ways and to refer to other people.

Does that help?

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks for your prompt response, but I still don't have clarity.

I thought that they are both aligned with evil and so are aligned
with each other but you said they are adversaries.

After lucifer rebelled, didn't he become part of the darkness and
if so, why is he an adversary of satan?

Thanks for your response.

OK, not a problem.

The two are equivalent when speaking of the devil or evil one.

Satan (or adversary/accuser), is an adversary against people, not against Lucifer.

Lucifer and Satan are the same being.

The following is offered as additional information only, concerning the meaning of and references to Lucifer and the names actual meaning.
However, the etymological equivalent of Lucifer (light bringer) is used of other beings such as the king of Babylon and even Jesus.

So, we must use context before deciding who is being spoken of when we read titles such as morning star, or one who brings light. Only in negative contexts is Lucifer/light bringer/morning star the same being as Satan.

Lucifer and Satan are the same being and are not against each other.

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Hoyt Roberson


I can address general questions specifically about Christian mysticism, and more specific questions about writers and their writings, spiritual formation and direction, and how Christian mysticism "fits" within the Christian view. Further, I can draw connections and illustrate commonalities among Christian, Jewish, Muslim, and Zen spiritualities. I am not an expert on and will not answer questions about other forms of mysticism, or the occult. If your question has to do with Christian mysticism, I'll be happy to respond.


I have an MS in Ministry, and an Masters of Counseling in Marriage and Family Therapy, have provided spiritual direction for more than ten years, am a member of our local spiritual directors group, have an extensive library of Christian writings on spirituality and mysticism, and have provided pastoral care for Christians and non-Christians, also for more than ten years.

Our local Spiritual Directors group A local congregation

MS, Ministry MC, Marriage and Family Therapy Have read and studied extensively Christian mystics and spiritual formation. My library probably has a couple hundred books on just this topic.

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