The Real Biblical Inspirations Behind The TV Show 'Lucifer'

List Rules
Vote up the most interesting tales about the biblical characters featured in 'Lucifer.'

SPOILER WARNING: List contains plot spoilers for Lucifer Seasons 1-5.

A television show about Satan living on Earth, solving homicide cases by day and running a club by night, might not seem like the sort of thing to be rooted in any historical context. But long before Lucifer premiered, the Bible made its debut. And the plotlines are just as wild and dramatic.

Lucifer's titular character (and several side characters) are adapted from the DC comic book of the same name - but most of them are inspired by various religious figures. Whether they were famously featured in the Bible, like Eve, or vaguely mentioned in apocryphal texts, like many of the archangels, the show finds clever ways to play off of the religious history of its characters. The devil really is in the details.

Of course, many ancient religious texts are open to interpretation, as well as lots (and lots) of debate. Lucifer also takes some of these lesser-known biblical backstories and viewpoints to inspire the show's narrative.

  • 1
    323 VOTES

    Azrael Is The Angel Of Death In Islamic Tradition

    Before Azrael, the "angel of death," appears in Lucifer, there's a lot of drama surrounding her blade, which can be used to eradicate any being. Seeing as there are a lot of immortal(ish), invincible, supernatural beings plotting against each other on the show, this blade is a highly sought-after tool.

    While not mentioned in any Christian texts, Azrael is the angel of death in Islamic tradition, and in some Jewish traditions. In Islam, God tells Azrael when it's someone's time to go, and Azrael separates the soul from the body and returns it to God. In Sikhism, Azrael is also the angel of death, but only appears to those who are unrepentant, slaying them and extracting their souls with a scythe before bringing them to hell for their proper punishment. Many artistic renderings of Azrael also feature some form of blade.

    Because of the weapon, and the "angel of death" nickname, Azrael is often associated with the Grim Reaper in popular culture.

  • 2
    365 VOTES

    Michael And Lucifer Really Do Go To War In The Bible

    Archangel Michael pops up in Season 5 of Lucifer as not only his brother, but his evil twin. In the Lucifer universe, Michael wants to take over as God, pushing his father to retire and eventually squaring off with Lucifer for the top spot in an angels vs. demons showdown. Of course, the sides of good versus evil are basically flipped from the Bible, with Lucifer as the protagonist.

    While Michael is an archangel in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, Christian tradition paints him more specifically as the force of good against Satan's force of evil. Revelations 12:7-9 describes this opposition in a vision of war:

    Then a war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought with the dragon, and the dragon and its angels fought back. But it was not strong enough, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. The huge dragon was hurled down. That ancient serpent, called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world, was hurled down to the earth, along with its angels.

    Here, Satan is cast down to Earth along with the fallen angels, though clearly the show's angel battle has almost the opposite outcome.

    Before Michael arrived on the scene, some fans might have drawn parallels between the character of Amenadiel (D.B. Woodside) and the biblical Michael, as the brother that butts heads with Lucifer and acts as God's "favorite child." But Amenadiel was actually a creation of the DC comic. His name is a combination of the Hebrew words "Amen" (truth) and "El" (God), meaning the name roughly translates to "truly of God."

  • 3
    578 VOTES

    Mazikeen Descends From Lilith

    While the fiery she-demon Mazikeen (Lesley-Ann Brandt) doesn't make an appearance in the Bible, the show's character is part of the "Lilim," a group of demons born from Lilith. Lilith is Adam's first wife, who is cast out of Eden after refusing to obey her husband.

    Lilith originated in ancient Babylonian demonology, and has morphed into a variety of different figures across various cultures. The fairly consistent representation of Lilith is a female demon who unleashes chaos and often uses her sexuality to seduce people into sin. For Mazikeen, it would seem the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree. 

    In the Bible, Lilith is only mentioned once in the Book of Isaiah, as a demonic creature of the night. So when did Lilith become Adam's first wife? This role emerged from a bit of biblical confusion. The Bible describes the creation of humans twice, first in Genesis 1 and then again in Genesis 2. As these descriptions vary slightly in how women were created, ancient Jewish scholars interpreted them as two separate events.

    The second woman, who was made from Adam's rib, is named Eve. In the Middle Ages, the first woman became the legendary Lilith, the original strong independent woman who wasn't feeling the patriarchy of Eden.

    As for Mazikeen, while she may not be a specific religious figure, "mazzikim" is a general term for demons or harmful spirits used in the Jerusalem Talmud.

  • 4
    447 VOTES

    It's Unclear If Cain Perishes In The Bible

    On Lucifer, Cain shows up as Lucifer and Chloe's new supervisor, Lieutenant Marcus Pierce (Tom Welling). Lucifer eventually discovers Pierce's true identity. The show version of Cain is immortal, having been punished by God to wander the Earth for eternity after slaying his brother. The "mark of Cain" prevents him from dying, and he enlists Lucifer's help (at first) in removing the mark so he can perish.

    In the Book of Genesis, Cain is the first human born on Earth, to Adam and Eve. After God favors his brother Abel's offering over his, Cain slays Abel, becoming history's first killer. 

    After Cain offs Abel, God punishes him in Genesis 4:12:

    When you work the ground, it will no longer yield its crops for you. You will be a restless wanderer on the earth.

    When Cain protests that he'll surely be slain during his wandering, God places the mark of Cain on him as an indication to others that he's off-limits for killing. So, while the biblical mark protects Cain from being slain, the show creatively spins the mark as a curse that has prevented him from dying altogether.

    While the Bible certainly never mentions that Cain is immortal, it also never mentions his demise. Later interpretations theorize he was slain accidentally by his great-great-grandson Lamech while hunting. Lamech admits to killing a man, but never says it was Cain, leaving the question of his fate ultimately unanswered in the Bible.