Deuteronomy 18:9-14 – Contrary to the Movies, Satan is Not Equal to God

Posted: February 22, 2017 in 05-Deuteronomy
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Deuteronomy 18:9-14

A Call to Holy Living

Movies about demon possession. Movies about evil spirits. Movies about the occult. They make millions at the box office. Nightmare on Elm Street. Friday the 13th. Final Destination. The Ring. Even television shows of this genre grab significant audiences like Angel, Charmed, and most recently Supernatural, True Blood, Salem. And then there was the most famous movie of the kind of all time, The Exorcist. Americans are fascinated with the occult and we love to be scared by all powerful evil spirits and demons. Because of fascination with such things, these movies are often well-financed and sometimes even have big-name actors in them or they can make a nobody into a superstar or at least launch an acting career.


At the same time, faith-based movies often struggle to find an audience. It is rare that a faith-based movie will attract large audiences for more than two nights of a run in a theatre. Most of the time, you have your choice of seats in a theatre. Grace Unplugged, October Baby, Soul Surfer, Courageous, The Passion of the Christ, and most recently Hacksaw Ridge are some of the best that the genre has to offer. Only one of these movies, though, found a wide audience, The Passion of the Christ. Its popularity had more to do with the controversy surrounding the blood and gore depicted and how its depiction of the Jewish leaders as less than flattering drew claims of anti-Semitism toward the movie’s producer and director, Mel Gibson.


Why is that the consuming public is so much more fascinated with evil than with films about faith. We are fascinated with evil and things of Satan. It is clear that these things appeal to our sinful nature. When you look at the genre of horror or evil-based movies, it is clear that the idea is that we are powerless against the powers of darkness. In almost all of these movies and television shows, it is clear that the message is that evil is equal to good and in most cases more powerful than good. We, subconsciously, want to believe that. It justifies our sinful nature in that, in our minds, Satan is as powerful as God. We make the powers of God and good to be seen as wimpy and ineffectual against evil. We want to validate why we so easily fall into sin and evil ways. In their blog post, “Why is Evil Sexier than Good?”, bloggers, Lee and Annette Woodfenden state,


“Perhaps it was a sick pleasure. But the first step to understanding the grip evil has on us is to recognize that we naturally love evil. We love to dominate others and make them serve us. We love to get money and possessions for ourselves even if it means others will have to go without. We love being the winner, and we hate being the loser.”


There it is, we naturally gravitate toward evil and because it plays to our base instincts of self-love, self-pleasure, and our darkest desires to dominate the world around us and have people serve us. With evil being seen as unstoppable or as at least equal to good, then, we find some satisfaction for our unspoken and dark desires.


The popularity of evil in the movies and television and the fact that they continue to find traction is because of us is what I thought of this morning as I read Deuteronomy 18:9-14. Let’s read what the Bible says this morning:


9 When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you, do not learn to imitate the detestable ways of the nations there. 10 Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord; because of these same detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you. 13 You must be blameless before the Lord your God. 14 The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the Lord your God has not permitted you to do so.


In this passage, we note that child sacrifice and occult practices were strictly forbidden by God. These practices were common among the pagan religions of nations of the Middle East. Pagan religions used supernatural means such as attempting to contact the spirit world to foretell the future and gain guidance. Because of these wicked practices, God would drive out these nations and replace their evil worship with the worship of the one true God. The Israelites were naturally curious about the occult and God flatly forbade Israel to have anything to do with it. Today, people are still fascinated with witchcraft, fortune-telling, horoscopes, and bizarre cults. Satan is no less dangerous today than he was in Moses’ time. Satan offers us a distorted view of the truth. We must trust what the Bible says about Satan and evil.


We must first understand that Satan is in no way as powerful to our equal to God. He is a created being. He was once an angel and angels are created beings. He is prideful and it was that pride that got him cast out of heaven. He perceived himself as equal to God when in fact he is not. The Bible tells us that every knee will bow at the name of Jesus. This includes Satan and his minions. Every time evil spirits encounter Jesus in the Bible, they know His name and cower before Him.


So when you feel powerless over the evil in your life or in the world around you, know this! God is more powerful than that. Satan is only as powerful as we let Him be. God is the Creator and there is nothing that He cannot do. He has all power over Satan and He only allows Satan to have the power that we sinners give him. When God determines that it is time to wrap this whole thing up and end it all, Satan will be roundly defeated. God is more powerful than Satan. Remember that horror movies are distortions of the eternal truth that God is more powerful than Satan. Remember that when you are being oppressed and evil surrounds you that God is more powerful than Satan. Dispel your fear by calling on the name that will make every knee bow and every evil spirit cower in their boots, Jesus Christ. He is our Savior and our Defender. He will make evil flee from us.


Jesus Christ. Say the name. Jesus Christ. The All-Powerful One. Say the name. Jesus Christ. He is the creator and ruler of the universe that will make evil flee in fear. Say the name, Jesus Christ!


Amen and Amen.

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