“The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.”
The Usual Suspects. Dir. Bryan Singer. Polygram, 1995. Film.
We live under the delusion that Satan was defeated at Calvary. If you think that assessment is unrealistic take a look around. How often do you hear Satan referenced in a homily? How often do you talk to your children about Satan, teach them strategies to recognize and avoid his traps, and his desire to steal souls from God? How often do you pray for St. Michael\’s protection for you, your family, your country?
Thankfully with the ordination of Jorge Mario Bergoglio, we are going to be hearing a lot more about The Father of Lies. Pope Francis doesn’t hesitate to remind us, as he has done since becoming pontiff. During his first sermon as the Bishop of Rome, Pope Francis’ message included:
“Do not confuse the truth. Jesus fights the devil: first criterion. Second criterion: he who is not with Jesus is against Jesus. There are no attitudes in the middle. Third criterion: vigilance over our hearts because the devil is astute. He is never cast out forever. It will only be so on the last day.”
“There are no attitudes in the middle.” And yet, how often do we promote those appeasing middle-of-the-road attitudes in almost every aspect of our culture and society? Yes, and even in our churches. We arrogantly believe that if we legislate, or accommodate immorality, we are showing tolerance, compassion, and love for God’s people. Yet, to support anything that is contrary to Christ’s teachings and God’s Will, we are directly supporting the devil, and promoting the destruction of souls. Our actions are nothing more than the sanctimonious allegiance with ourselves, leaving in our wake a society that is spiritually handicap and morally bankrupt.
Between Liberty and Obedience
James Hitchcock, Professor Emeritus of History at St. Louis University, stated in a Catholic World Report article (1995) entitled, Conservative Bishops, Liberal Results; “few religions in the history of the world have placed more emphasis on doctrinal purity, liturgical correctness, and moral authority that has the Catholic Church . . . If at almost all times in the history of the church, a concern for orthodoxy has been paramount, the contemporary church has an eerie feel about it precisely because of the absence of that concern.”
It is true that today the Catholics shows clear evidence of an “absence of concern.” Too many clergy and laity openly contradict the Pope. Parishes that embrace a more Protestant appeal. Too many parishioners selectively choosing their acceptance or rejection of Catholic doctrine, and Scripture, while still accepting the Eucharist. Catholic politicians supporting immoral legislation to secure their place in Washington, and in history, while still receiving the Eucharist.
“One of the most ordinary weaknesses of the human intellect is to seek to reconcile contrary principles and to purchase peace at the expense of logic. There had ever been and will ever be men who, after having submitted some portion of their religious beliefs to the principle of authority, will seek to exempt several other parts of their faith from it and to keep their minds floating at random between liberty and obedience.”
Today, we call those floating minds – “Cafeteria Catholics.” They obey only the teachings of the church they find acceptable, while rejecting all others, and thus support legislation for the same. Meanwhile, the basis for morality, which is religion, is being diluted with moral relativism; a problematic corruption of Christianity.
In the United States, people clamor to cite the Constitution as the source of keeping God out of anything that is outside the church walls. How many times do you hear the reference “separation of church and state” as justification to keep any reference to God from the decision making process, thus passing laws that are contrary to God’s Will? This reference is perhaps the most widely accepted inaccuracy.
The truth is the reference to “separation between church and state” was a phrase used by Thomas Jefferson in a letter to the Danbury Baptists in 1802. Note that this phrase is not in the Constitution. Jefferson’s exact phrase used in the letter was “wall of separation between the church and the state.” Jefferson’s purpose for this statement was to assure the Baptists that the state would keep out of the church’s business, not keep the church (God) out of the state’s business.
It is important to also clarify here that the US Constitution actually states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” The framers of the Constitution did not intend to establish, or to promote, a society void of God. The “establishment of religion” that they reference simple means that no single Christian denomination should be favored over another.
The Founding Fathers of the United States intentionally and purposefully founded this country on Christian principles and doctrine. They recognized that we are all held to a higher court. The first President of the United States, George Washington, encapsulated the intent best: “It is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor.”
We continue to deny God’s sovereignty over our lives, utilizing the referenced phrase, separation of church and state, to justify removing God from the public arena. The late Fr. Richard John Neuhaus wrote in his book, The Naked Public Square, that there is a need in people for a belief that transcends the world and gives our lives meaning. [sic] ‘If we remove religion from the public arena, we marginalize it, we deny its importance to society and relegate it to the private sphere. But if men need a transcendence that can be brought to bear on public affairs, and if religion is denied that role, other forms of transcendence, some of them quite ugly and threatening, may move and occupy the empty space.’
As we can clearly see in our present culture, this empty space is being conveniently occupied.
Waltzing With Satan
Recent news served as a timely reminder that Satan’s minions are poised to promote his existence and objectives more openly and arrogantly in an effort to minimize God’s Word.
The Satanic Temple, a New York-based organization, expressed interest in erecting a statue of homage to Satan near the Ten Commandments monument at the Oklahoma capital building. In a statement released by the organization in December 2013, this effort is offered by the Satanists in an attempt to help resolve the current dispute in Oklahoma over the erection of the Ten Commandments monument, which is currently the subject of a federal lawsuit.
Lucien Greaves, spokesperson for the Satanic Temple, affirmed the purpose of their statue proposal: “By accepting our offer, the good people of Oklahoma City will have the opportunity to show that they espouse the basic freedoms spelled out in the Constitution. We imagine that the ACLU would also embrace such a response. Allowing us to donate a monument would show that the Oklahoma City Council does not discriminate, and both the religious and non-religious should be happy with such an outcome. Our mission is to bring people together by finding common sentiments that create solutions that everyone can appreciate and enjoy.”
Pay close attention to the last sentence in Greaves’ statement: “Our mission is to bring people together by finding common sentiments that create solutions that everyone can appreciate and enjoy.”
That is exactly what Satan has been doing for the last 100 years. Through his veil of illusion, we have been creating “solutions” that we mistakenly believe will make us happier, and benefit all of mankind, while promoting a more “tolerant” society. Specifically in the United States, we have slowly, methodically and stealthily, cloaked behind the disguise of “political correction” and “tolerance,” conjured up legislation and laws that are designed to be more inclusive. Yet, we have been duped into accepting and believing that God’s Word and His Laws are irrelevant, except when restricted inside a church setting.
Claiming Life, Family and Marriage
There are three elements of humanity that Satan is determined to claim and destroy. They are the foundation of God’s Plan; life, family and marriage. Clearly the “Father of Lies” – The Great Deceiver – has been puppeteer-ing us all along to achieve his objective.
In 1914, the deception of the value of life began with Margaret Sanger, who believed ardently in sexual liberation, and advocated the right to practice birth control. Just as in the Garden of Eden, Satan chose a woman who valued her “liberation” more than her soul. And just like Adam, men jumped on the liberation train in hopes of enjoying the spoils of the emancipation.
Then in 1973, birth control was not enough. Women wanted unconditional free will without being tethered to responsibility. They wanted a “final solution.” The passage of Roe vs Wade offered women that final solution they desired for unwanted and unplanned pregnancies with legalized abortion. At this writing, there have been over 57- million abortions in the US since the passage of Roe vs Wade. (Worldwide over 1- billion since 1980) Equally disturbing is the recent news that couples view abortion as a viable option in determining whether to accept a pregnancy based upon the genetic integrity or gender identity of a child.
Thus the destruction of “life” and “family” has been set in motion, leaving “marriage” under attacked.
Redefining marriage, which is currently being challenged in many states in the U.S., to include same-sex unions, is yet another tool in the arsenal of Satan to destroy mankind. It doesn’t take a doctorate in biology to appreciate the facts, but still people choose to see accommodating homosexuality as yet another “solution” in satisfying human nature that is contrary to God’s Plan. In fact, homosexuality is contrary to the success of humanity. Two people of the same sex cannot, and were never intended to, procreate. Yes, they can adopt children. Yes, science can help them conceive through in vitro fertilization. But the truth is, they cannot procreate. Their “union” does not promote the continuation and success of humanity. If you put a group of homosexuals on a island for a lifetime, you will return in 80 years to find humanity extinct.
Yet, if you oppose homosexuality or same-sex unions, or the redefinition of marriage, you are labeled as bigoted, homophobic, hurtful and uncaring. How can you possible not want to see two people together who love one another? They aren’t harming anyone. They just want to be able to live their life together, and receive the same benefits as heterosexual couples. God made them, too.
Remember that Satan is a master of using God’s Words, and guilt, to promote his agenda. He used that same strategy quit skillfully to tempt Jesus in the Wilderness. Satan quoted Scripture back to Jesus in justifying every temptation, while using that Scripture out of context to confuse Christ. When gay rights advocates attack Christians who oppose the redefinition of marriage to include homosexual relationships, they are merely deflecting the truth. As Satan attempted to do in the Wilderness, if he can separate you from God by using guilt, he will. For him, it doesn’t matter what Scripture says. He will twist it to promote his agenda. God tells us to love one another. But he did not tell us to embrace the homosexual lifestyle as morally just.
One of the most prolific lies that Satan purports is that people are born homosexuals, lesbians, bi-sexual, transgendered. Scripture tells us in seven passages that God condemns homosexual behavior. If God made a man or woman to be a homosexual, why would He condemn the behavior seven times in Scripture? If God intended for homosexuality to be part of God’s Plan, why didn’t Jesus address that while on earth? Why doesn’t the New Testament offer a clarification? Christ certainly addressed other issues. That is because, homosexuality is not a condition. It is a lifestyle. And Satan has done a clever job of convincing us to believe otherwise.
Thus the destruction of “marriage ” has been set in motion.
Where Do We Go From Here
Although we have morphed into a culture, a society, a country, a world that believes in itself above all things, there is still time to alter our course of destruction. We need to stop dancing to Satan’s music. We must return to the humility that promotes a God-centered world. We must stop promoting anything and everything that is contrary to God’s Word and teachings. The Ten Commandments are not options. We must recognize and accept that we have been duped and played for fools, taking back our dignity as God’s children. And we must stop doing what de Tocqueville referred to as “keeping our minds floating between liberty and obedience.” We have to acknowledge, and accept, that through obedience we embrace a life that is filled abundantly with blessings beyond our comprehension. And that our mortal life can never compare to our eternal life.
“Put on your whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against
the schemes of the devil.” (Ephesians 6:11)
“Some people take Christianity and twist it around to fit their own little beliefs. Throughout the centuries, people have taken Christianity and put their own little spin on it. They take the joy out of Christianity. Many heresies have arisen which, for a time, have turned people away from the true Faith and the true teaching of the Church. I always tell people “Focus on the teaching of the Church, and focus on the teachings of the Scriptures and you will never go wrong.” Everything else is projection and people’s opinion, and I am not the least bit interested in it. We need to focus on what is true, and what has been revealed to us.” [p. 145]
What are you doing to change the course of humanity? Prayer? Fasting? Active involvement in blocking legislation that opposes God’s Word? Witnessing to those who are confused and search for answers with love and charity?
Are you convicted in your beliefs as a Catholic Christian and willing to proclaim them? Or are you merely “floating between liberty and obedience?”
© 2014. Diane McKelva. All rights reserved.
Photography: See our Photographers page.