Another email-list participant commented: Iblis was Kafir, according to ALLAH taala.
My response: Kufur means to reject, and Iblis did reject obedience to the command of God. However, in Surah Hashr, the analogy given for hypocrites is that of Satan:
Quran 59:11 Have you not considered those who practice hypocrisy, saying to their brothers who have disbelieved among the People of the Scripture, "If you are expelled, we will surely leave with you, and we will not obey, in regard to you, anyone - ever; and if you are fought, we will surely aid you." But Allah testifies that they are liars.
Quran 59:16 [The hypocrites are] like the example of Satan when he says to man, "Disbelieve." But when he disbelieves, he says, "Indeed, I am disassociated from you. Indeed, I fear Allah , Lord of the worlds."
My recent blogpost on Satan's Enmity may also be of interest:
The email-list participant pointed out: SuratulBaqarah ayat 34
My response: I agree. Even in Surah Kahf, it states:
[Quran 18:51] I made them not to witness the creation of the heavens and the earth, nor their own creation; nor choose I misleaders for (My) helpers.
Iblis was not a believer in the sense of the meaning of Momin, but rather in the sense of knowing God and speaking and requesting respite. He was aware of God, yet his heart was not obedient, thus a hypocrite, and Iblis' hypocrisy was made public through his disobedience and rebellion. Iblis' rejection of God's decision and orders proved that Iblis was a 'kafir'. Iblis had essentially rebelled against the hierarchy set by God where Adam was honoured above Iblis.
This makes me wonder on how many levels so many disobey and rebel: child against parents, wife against husband, employee against employer, nation against state, human against creation, Muslim against the verses of the Quran, ...
May Allah grant us the serenity to accept whatever He has decreed, gratitude and courage to serve Him, the wisdom to understand the message of the Quran, and the taqwa to keep our duty to Allah.