I feel the need to state something that used to be called “obvious,” but in the land of moral ambiguity and subjective relativism, those lines are now all blurred, and what once seemed obvious to some of us, is just not so obvious anymore.
So satan is the bad guy in the world, and I don’t mean “bad” in the way bad boys might be attractive to some. He is not a fine-looking rebel without a clue riding a motorcycle and peacocking his bad self all over the place. He is also not a lost little boy, a misunderstood victim, a sad puppy people are always being mean to.
I refer to a couple of really young girls, 11 and 12 years old, who just got popped with a bunch of weapons, knives mostly, and plans to kill people at their school. Allegedly they wanted to eat human flesh and drink blood, and they both stated that they are practicing satanists. I’m quite sure there is much more going on behind the sensationalism and mediated reality then meets the eye, but that is the essence of the story.
In my experience, young people being romanced, seduced into satan worship is surprisingly common. I see dabblers all the time, and some who are quite serious, and while it doesn’t shock me anymore it does make me angry and sad, because we as a culture created this situation. This is simple cause and effect in action. The devil has been so culturally glamorized, romanticized, and given legitimacy, that many people genuinely don’t get the fact that he is flat-out evil.
Heck, most of us don’t even believe in “evil” anymore, nor can we even define it. Many of us are in our happy place, people are just basically good, all bad behavior is just related to mental health issues, and “evil” is pretty much just a subjective matter of opinion anyway.
Not long ago I was talking to some people, struggling to try to come up with an example of some atrocity, some mutually agreed upon Really Bad Thing that would help to draw an analogy for evil and I just wound up on the verge of tears. How do you even explain to people who grew up on horror movies, saw violence portrayed as power, satan as the sexy bad boy, that evil is actually not a good thing at all?
We have been so desensitized to satan that it doesn’t even register anymore. Try explaining “natural affection” to people who really haven’t seen many good examples of it in the world and it’s enough to just make you wail in despair.
Add to the mix the huge cultural support for rebelling, for giving religion the middle finger, for acting like all beliefs are equal and valid, and you’ve got a real recipe for disaster.
To stir the mix some more this is a real post modern, materialistic culture, so the “supernatural “is perceived as not real. It is perceived as not real, even while some invest a great deal of energy into the spiritual, which is a completely irrational contradiction. So contrary to popular belief, there are actual consequences to dabbling in the dark, to focusing on evil, to chasing demons. Spiritual consequences, and often material, physical consequences, too.
Recently I read a little FB meme about earning your place in hell as if the devil is going to reward you for your service and hand you a little kingdom where you and all your friends can rule and hangout. Like, people genuinely don’t seem to realize that the enemy comes only to steal, kill, and destroy. He comes to steal you, to destroy you, to kill you.
He is called the “father of all lies” because he does not keep his bargains. You’d have better luck standing on the promises of an active drug addict desperate for a fix, than you would with satan. He’s not going to reward you with power, he has absolutely no reason to share his power with anybody.
The whole concept of give and take, of reciprocity, of sacrificial love, of shared communion, is actually a Christian one, and those values are the very opposite of what satan offers. He is a taker, an abuser, toxic. He will drain you of all that you have to offer and then spit out your bones and move onto the next one.
Young girls especially, are often drawn to power, to dominance, to strength and confidence, perhaps. Especially true if you did not have a good father to model what that even looks like. That is just basic biology, something else our culture is trying to erase, but female attraction often manifests itself in those two broken stereotypes, the “bad boys” or the “lost puppies,” one is romantic desire and the other maternal desire, and satan tends to conveniently fit the bill for many. What do girls so often tend to do in relationships? Reflect and multiply, attempt to be pleasing, try to earn his attention and favor.
These two kids were trying to earn his favor and the way you do that when you are shadowing evil is by trying to do something shocking, appalling, against natural affection.
Kind of like other domestic abusers, satan will never share power with you, and you will never win his affection or admiration. That is nothing more than a dead-end, a toxic relationship, and if you are chasing satan you are in way over your head, unwitting players in a game you don’t even understand.
Least anybody feel the urge to say “what is the world coming to” or “what is even with kids these days,” they learned it from us as a culture, we are the ones who left the door open.
This time of year especially, I’m often reminded of how much we’ve glamorized satan, tried to make him fun, exciting, sexy, and tried to make evil something lighthearted and culturally acceptable, as if it isn’t real at all, but just the shadows of our imagination. We are all kind of like those unwitting players in a game we don’t even understand.
We really have to shine a whole, whole lot of light into the world, because many today genuinely don’t realize there is actually a vast difference between light and dark, good and evil, life and death. Moral ambiguity is nothing more than a smokescreen, a deception, a lie, and it always has been.