Monday, December 22, 2014

Embracing the Fall

Let’s not pretend there’s no right or wrong here:

Christians and Satanists put up competing displays Sunday on the Michigan Capitol grounds as Christmas week got underway.

The Detroit chapter of the Satanic Temple set up its “Snaketivity Scene” featuring a snake offering a book called “Revolt of the Angels” as a gift. The snake is wrapped around the Satanic cross on the 3-feet-by-3-feet display. Capitol rules require that displays have to be taken down each night.

In a videotaped interview with the Lansing State Journal, Satanic Temple spokeswoman Jex Blackmore said her group doesn’t worship Satan but does promote individuality, compassion and views that differ from Christian and conservative beliefs.

Blackmore said that the “holiday season is a time of year that is celebrated in many different ways.”

“Having our government endorse one singular viewpoint or method of celebrating the season is problematic when we have a diverse community of people in Michigan,” she said.

How about one truth, as opposed to a thousand falsehoods? Is that asking too much, to publicly recognize the means by which we are served by God’s forgiveness for our fallen nature, by which we’re empowered to serve our fellow man, by which we civilly coexist?

I can’t think of a better way to depict the alternative to God reconciling to Himself man created in His image. The Satanists’ display embraces the Fall in Genesis 3. “When you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil,” the serpent said. It convinced Adam and Eve to disobey God with the bait of knowledge, that through their own understanding they could make a better world than the garden God created for them.

“The greatest gift is knowledge”? The greatest gift is Jesus, Whom God gave to us to take away our sins, Who gave His life for each of our sakes. The greatest gift is giving.

Enjoy knowledge for what it’s worth. Read Ecclesiastes. Knowledge without faith is burdened with the meaninglessness of living and the certainty of death. Knowledge is not the bread of life. It must be paired with purpose to have meaning, and if that purpose is not honoring God, it’s something less honorable.

Further reading: “An un-Christian Christmas?”

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