This topic is more or less bouncing off of e.r.m.'s post about whether there are "specialty demons" or not, such as the "demon of lust", or the "demon of jealously", etc. The proof for that supposition is usually anecdotal, and I have yet to see anyone prove the point from any scriptural basis.
What I am going to attempt on this post is to submit some scriptures that I believe are related to the origin of devils - a topic where we have to tread carefully, since this is dealing with a realm about which there is much conjecture and assumption. I am going to bring up a few scripture references in the process that some may not have considered before in connection with this.
The question has arisen before on this forum of how such an evil thing as devils could even come to exist in a world that was originally created to be only "good" and "very good". We know that the angels of God had already been created and were present when our world was created, since Job 38:7 says that "all the sons of God shouted for joy" when He laid the foundations of the earth and created the stars. Of this group of created angelic beings, some were called "elect angels" (I Timothy 5:21). Those who were not of the "elect" number amounted to 1/3 who eventually were cast out of heaven along with their leader, the "Dragon" / Satan in Revelation 12:4.
This casting out of heaven did NOT occur back in the early days of this planet following creation, as I was instructed by every sermon I ever heard on this subject from childhood onward. Christ told us exactly when this "casting out" of Satan and his angels would occur (John 12:31): it was on the day of His first ascension to the Father on the day of Christ's resurrection , because it was the blood of the "LAMB" - the crucified, risen Christ - that prevailed to vanquish Satan and banish him and his angels from heaven for all time (Rev. 12:11). Before that day came, the devils and Satan their leader, the "accuser of the brethren", had access to heaven on certain occasions. One such clear example is found in Job 1:6, and 2:1, where "the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord". Just why were evil beings able to enter into God's very presence in this manner? And for what purpose? Digging into the answer to those questions helps us understand just how evil angels came into existence in the first place.
For lack of a better term for it, I will call the sons-of-God group in the book of Job that presented themselves before God by the name of the "divine council": a title that others before me have used. Simply stated, long ago God created this group composed of His angels to observe the affairs of humanity and nations, and to implement God's plans for those nations. The book of Daniel calls these "The Watchers" (Daniel 4:13, 17). The existence of angels in a "divine council" is shown to us in Psalms 82:1: "God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods." As in the book of Job, these sons of God members of the divine council would "present themselves before God" to give their individual reports to Him at stipulated times. Did God NEED angels to do this for Him because He couldn't manage things Himself? Certainly not. He simply chose this method of operating, just as He designed for there to be certain "powers that be" on earth that were "ordained of God", with delegated authority as structures of government (Romans 13:1). As on earth, so it was in heaven.
We are told in scripture just when this "divine council" was originally set up. It was put in place when God divided up the nations. This division of the separate nations is spoken about in Genesis 10:25 in the days of Peleg (whose very name means division). Deuteronomy 32:8 (LXX) tells us that there were angels assigned to each of these nations of the earth that were to implement God's plans within those nations. "When the Most High divided the nations, when He separated the sons of Adam, HE SET THE BOUNDS OF THE NATIONS ACCORDING TO THE NUMBER OF THE ANGELS OF GOD." This tells us that certain angels were assigned to each nation - just how many per nation, we aren't told. Apparently though, all the angels were divided up between all the nations , to serve God's purposes of monitoring humanity's activities and to inject themselves into human history on occasion when God required it.
One such example of angelic interaction is the case of the two angels who visited Lot and his family in Sodom before the cities of the plain of Jordan were overthrown. Daniel 10:13 gives us another brief glimpse of this "divine council" at work on earth. It mentions that the angel speaking with Daniel had been hindered from getting to Daniel by "a prince of the kingdom of Persia", which the angel would have to return to fight with later on. This hindrance was so severe that Michael, one of the "chief princes" had to come to the aid of Daniel's angel, so that he could be free to come to Daniel in the vision. This is a RIGHTEOUS angel of the divine council going to war with an UNRIGHTEOUS angel who was called the "prince of the kingdom of Persia". We can't imagine just what a battle between angelic princes looks like, but it was a fight nonetheless, similar to Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon and his angels in Revelation 12:7.
Part of the job Daniel's righteous angel had been charged with was to "confirm and strengthen" Darius the Mede in the first year of that monarch's reign (Dan. 11:1). God had a definite purpose for the Persian empire's monarchs to perform (most notably in having them give the 4 decrees allowing the Jews to return to their homeland). As a member of the "divine council", Daniel's angel was given the task of making sure that the reign of Darius was off to a start that would insure that those 4 decrees regarding the return of the Jews to their nation were successfully given by the Persian rulers later on (Ezra 9:9).
This account of "spiritual warfare" going on in Daniel 10 between the angelic RIGHTEOUS PRINCE and the angelic UNRIGHTEOUS PRINCE of the kingdom of Persia shows us the existence of a hierarchy within both good and evil groups of angels in the "divine council". Why did God permit evil members of the "divine council" to exist? And how did those evil members of the sons of God become evil to begin with? And if the angels, as Adam and Eve, were originally created with a choice of obeying their creator or disobeying Him, what sins could an angel commit that would cause them to fall from that righteous state? (One of these sins of the angels was the marriage of these sons of God to the daughters of men, which eventually caused the existence of the "unclean spirits". As some on this site have noted before, these "unclean spirits" were not the same type of spirit beings as the fallen angels, and won't be discussed in this particular comment that is going to cover the subject of devils and their origin.)
In the case of Satan himself, we are told what prompted his fall in I Timothy 3:6. When discussing the pitfalls of selecting an overseer of the church, Paul cautioned Timothy not to select a novice in the faith, "lest being LIFTED UP WITH PRIDE" this novice would fall into committing the same crime of the devil. A sign of this pride is shown when we see the devil tempting Christ in the wilderness. He was most desirous of getting the incarnate Christ to fall down and worship him (Matt. 4:9). This demonstrates to us that EVIL angelic beings (who actually are "greater in power and might" than humans - II Peter 2:11) greatly desire worship by those in human form. There is a warning to the saints in Colossians 2:18 that a voluntary humbling of oneself in worshipping angels was not to be done. To engage in this forbidden worship of angels was to fall into the same trap that the pagan Gentiles once practiced.
To worship angels is to have "worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator", as Romans 1:25 describes it. We have references to this customary practice of worshipping evil angelic beings (the devils) in several texts. It's just as I Corinthians 10:20 tells us: "But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God..." And this Psalms 96:5 (LXX) text: "For all the gods of the heathen are devils, but the Lord made the heavens." For a time, God "winked at" the heathen practice of worshipping devils during the "times of ignorance" (Acts 17:30), but as Paul told those on Mars Hill, the time was past when God would tolerate ignorance as an excuse for their idolatry.
There is another text in Deuteronomy 32:16-17 that describes when those in Israel similarly departed from worshipping God and descended into idolatry after their wilderness wanderings: "They provoked Him to jealousy with strange gods, with abominations provoked they Him to anger. THEY SACRIFICED UNTO DEVILS, not to God; to gods whom they knew not, to new gods that came newly up, whom your fathers feared not."
To me, this last verse in Deuteronomy about the devils who were the "NEW gods that CAME NEWLY UP" indicates that these angelic beings fell individually over the progress of time, and became devils on a case-by-case basis - NOT a massive, one-time revolt that produced the demonic forces all at once. Since this verse particularly mentions humans sacrificing unto devils, that leads me to believe that it was HUMAN WORSHIP BEING ACCEPTED BY ANGELS that was the underlying cause of the angels' fall into evil. In other words, my understanding is that the RIGHTEOUS angels turned into EVIL angelic beings whenever the heathen and the wicked children of Israel began to worship these members of the "divine council". Once any angelic being was tempted by pride and committed the sin of ACCEPTING that human worship, (which worship really belonged to God who created them), this was the cause of their transformation into evil. As members of the "divine council", they still involved themselves in overseeing the activities of humanity within the nations, but their motives became twisted into evil intentions toward God and humanity. This is why we see the evil "prince of the kingdom of Persia" engaged in opposing both the "chief prince" Michael and Daniel's angel as well. This is also why in the book of Job that we see Satan (as a fallen member of the divine council) presenting himself before God and speaking against Job, falsely accusing him of serving God with selfish motives. This was his role as "accuser of the brethren" being acted out (Rev. 12:10).
God permitted this oppression of the nations only up to a certain point in time by demonic members of the "divine council" who had once been righteous. Actually, there came a time when the whole institution of the "divine council" was disbanded altogether, so that neither righteous nor evil angels were operating in that particular mode on earth any longer. The point of change came when the Old Covenant dissolved completely in the last days, and the New Covenant Age was left standing by itself after the fall of Jerusalem. Hebrews chapter 2 described this transition. After Hebrews 2:2 tells us that God had held the angels accountable for "every transgression and disobedience" (this sin of accepting human worship was not the evil angels' only crime), it then says in Hebrews 2:5 (Interlinear) "For NOT TO ANGELS DID HE SUBJECT THE HABITABLE WORLD WHICH IS TO COME, of which we speak."
There was a "world to come" which Hebrews had just been speaking about earlier in chapter 1. It was a world that was "coming" in the experience of those who were reading Hebrews; an entire habitable world which would no longer be subjected to the oversight of righteous angelic members of the "divine council", once the Old Covenant had dissolved. What "world to come" had the Hebrews author just mentioned? It was the changed earth and heavens of Hebrews 1:10-12 that would be coming; the same conditions of the "New heavens and a new earth" which Isaiah 65:17-25 had predicted to come, which would include certain features such as childbirth, harvesting, death, the presence of sinners, prayers, etc. - all of which we experience today under the New Covenant.
Hebrews 1:14 (Interlinear) goes on to say that the righteous angels were sent to be ministering spirits "for service being sent forth on account of those being ABOUT TO INHERIT SALVATION" in those "last days" (Heb. 1:1). This inheritance of theirs was on the horizon. Written around AD 64, this soon-coming inheritance of salvation in Hebrews 1:14 was speaking of the final stage of the saints' salvation inheritance - the resurrection of the physical body standing in God's presence. This was similar to Paul telling the believers in Romans 13:11, (written around AD 60), that this last stage of their salvation was "nearer than when they had first believed".
Under the conditions of the changed habitable world that was coming for the readers of Hebrews, the outdated "divine council" would no longer be needed, once the New Covenant Age was firmly established without any "beggarly elements" of the Old Covenant left standing. Under the New Covenant, every one of God's children on earth is now serving in almost the same role that the righteous divine council members once filled; they each serve as an ambassador and a representative of God's growing kingdom, by carrying the Holy Spirit within them wherever they go, into every nation on earth. In other words, the commission once given to the "divine council" members, in a manner of speaking has become the "Great Commission" for every believer to perform.
The "elect angels" as members of God's kingdom may have had a change in their job description with the elimination of the "divine council", but as part of God's kingdom, they are still serving as a "courier" to escort departing souls of the righteous to heaven when they have died on earth (just as they once did for Lazarus in Luke 16:22). In this manner, these elect angels still act as "ministering spirits" today by serving humanity in this and other unobtrusive ways, but as Hebrews 2:5 says, we are no longer UNDER SUBJECTION to their oversight as the nations once were under the Old Covenant Age. The power of the Holy Spirit itself, continually residing in each of God's children of faith (John 14:16), has rendered the "divine council" of the angels obsolete. We as children of God have essentially now become the new "divine council" for the New Covenant Age.
In addition, the "elect angels" are no longer tasked with the job of combating their former opponents, the evil angels, since Psalms 82 prophesied that at the time when God judged them, these "gods" that were the "children of the Most High" would "die like men, and fall like one of the princes". Evil angels never possessed immortality: only God possesses that innate quality of immortality (I Tim 6:16), and He only bestows it upon those who are IN HIM, which the evil angels were not. In John 14:30, Jesus said quite bluntly that Satan, the "prince of this world...hath nothing in me". That means Satan did not have immortality, and thus would have an end to his existence. We are told in scripture exactly when Satan lost his existence, as well as when the devils that followed him lost theirs...
but I will have to put the scripture proof for that in another post.