Rekindling the Intellectual, Spiritual, Creative legacy of Christians in Culture

DEVILGustaveDoreParadiseLostSatanProfile From the Bible's snake slithering on stage in the Garden of Eden to the Apostle Paul's warning that we are in spiritual warfare against principalities and powers, and from Flip Wilson's comedic "The devil made me do it" to George Lucas' Darth Vader swayed to the dark side, the devil is part of the universal human story. Sometimes our interest is lighthearted and other times obsessive. CS Lewis warned of these extremes saying, "there are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel and excessive and unhealthy interest in them." Tonight's subject is "Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Devil and Were Afraid to ask." Our guests are Dr. Bryan Burton, theologian and pastor of John Knox Presbyterian Church and Bill Hogg a theologically trained cultural gadfly.

15 Responses

  1. Author Christine Wicker (“Not in Kansas Anymore”) tlaks about how at a very practical level people, including Christians, tend to believe in “bad” magic more than in “good” magic.” Why is it that we are fascinated and deeply moved by good magic in the great stories like Tolkien, but in “the real world” we are terrified of magic and avoid it?

  2. If Satan is not a person how do you reconcile the Biblical accounts of his personification in Job 1-2, Genesis account, and Jesus’ interaction with him. If he’s not person how much sense does it make to throw a “force” or “absence of good” into hell or the abyss if you call it that?

  3. Does having a stronger more powerful devil serve the pragmatic needs of the church? Might the church play up the existence of evil to get people in the pews and if so, should this practice be minimized or stopped even at the expense of attendance or participation?

  4. Assuming obsession is avoided, what is at stake in referring and addressing Satan as a person? What is the Christian’s responsibility in facing addressing, resisting, talking about Satan or demons?

  5. In the last issue of ScRipt, a screenwriting magazine, William C. Martell talks about why horror films are suddenly so popular as compared to five years ago. He basically says that between then know we’ve had a war, 9-11, Katrina, the tsunami, in other there’s now a palpable sense of fear in this country that there wasn’t not to long ago. When we have that sense of real fear, we long more than ever for a fake kind of fear, a controlled one that we don’t have to worry about. That’s what horror movies provide us with, escape from real fear. I’m not defending them by the way.

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