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Cults and World Religions

Satanism



Church of Satan

We cannot conclude the study of the world of the occult without three final groups. As indicated, space and time does not allow us to touch upon all of the occultic groups, but as we have seen, they are numerous, active, and under the obvious influence of Satan. At the true extreme, there is a small group which worships Satan directly, although they outwardly claim they do not worship the Devil of Scripture. This group is the Church of Satan.

The Church of Satan was founded in 1966 by Anton Szandor LaVey (1930-1999). This group claims a “pre-Christian” concept of Satan based upon pagan images of power, virility, sexuality, and sensuality. Satan is not a living being but is a force of nature. As such Satan has nothing to do with hell, demons, or the other popular concepts of the Devil such as pitchforks, sadistic torture, or profound evil. The group does, however, use the Black Mass for publicity purposes. 219

Beliefs

It is difficult to obtain a true view of the Satanist. Published practices and beliefs include:

In Perspective

Satanism is a force to be concerned with, but much of the world shares this concern with Christians. Despite the official statements of the Church of Satan, the popular image of the Church strongly suggests that the ritual killing of humans does occur. In other words, the Church of Satan matches the Devil – it is pure evil. As such, this repulses many people, be they members of Christianity, other world religions or cults, or the agnostic / atheists of the world. The Church of Satan is simply too evil for most people’s blood and, therefore, will not grow in any significant numbers or influence. What we must realize, however, is that just as the Christian is admonished to be aware of the tools of Satan, so, too, the Devil understands human nature and psychology. He knows direct worship will not be appealing to but a few people. So, Satan spends little effort here, but as we have seen, expends a great deal of effort corrupting the fringes of Christianity in an effort to slowly and patiently direct people’s views toward false religions that seem less threatening.

Of course, the sad part of the story is that all of these are threatening, for all result in a life in eternal misery when the follower does not accept Jesus as the true Christ. Satan wins without the need to have people actually worship him.

Footnotes:
219. The Black Mass reverses the rituals of the Roman Catholic Mass by ridiculing and desecrating the objects of worship. Oftentimes a nude woman is stretched on the altar. The ritual ends with the high priest having sex with the “sacrifice.” An upside-down cross is the main symbol used in the Black Mass. Its history apparently lies in the desire of the witches to worship on the Sabbath.
220. http://www.religioustolerance.org/satanis1.htm. There is one other major Satanist group in the world, the Temple of Set, which recognizes the ancient Egyptian deity Set as a living entity and the focus of worship.

 

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