I’ve tried not to overreact to the annual Halloween ritual. I’m well aware of the fact that Halloween is a night of dark, evil celebration for some involved in the occult. However, I view those who come to my door as delightful children, not fiendish devils. So…we keep our house open and give out treats, hoping that we won’t receive any tricks.
I’m not as tolerant when it comes to Satanism and the occult. Some years ago, I wrote an article for a newspaper on “Satanism, Witchery and the Occult”. The following Sunday two enraged individuals from a local coven visited my church. They unsuccessfully tried to obtain my microphone and take over the service. One of them was the grandson of warlock, Aleister Crowley (1875 – 1947), who was referred to by the press of his day as “The wickedest man in the world.”
Anton Szandor LaVey (1930 – 1997) proclaimed himself Satan’s high priest on April 30, 1966 and published “The Satanic Bible” in 1969. He boldly taught the doctrines of the Church of Satan saying that “Satan rules the earth” and “the dawn of the age of Satan—the morning of magic has arrived.” LaVey, serious about his pursuits, performed satanic rituals, weddings, funerals, and baptized children in the name of Satan.
Some scorn the idea, but the Bible makes reference to a literal Satan from Genesis through Revelation. He is described as a fallen angel who in pride rebelled against God. He is also a defeated foe and Christians have clear instructions on how to deal with him.
Ephesians 6:10ff states that believers should “…be strong in the Lord and in His great power. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can fight against the devil’s evil tricks.” One of his best tricks is to have people believe he doesn’t exist. Someone said, “That there is a devil is a thing doubted by none, but such as are under the influence of the Devil.”
In 1 Peter 5:8ff we read, “Be careful—watch out for attacks from Satan, your great enemy. He prowls around like a hungry, roaring lion, looking for some victim to tear apart. 9 Stand firm when he attacks. Trust the Lord…”
James 4:7ff goes one step further saying “Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.”
The weakest Christian, in simplest faith and submission to God can send Satan scurrying in the other direction like a toothless old lion. What a treat!
— Pastor Ross Helgeton is senior pastor at Erskine Evangelical Free Church