This holiday season, when people celebrate either evil or the Reformation, it may help to remember Martin Luther’s reminder that “Even the devil is God’s devil.” And yet Satan is still prowling the Earth, looking for souls to steal. We know people don’t think the Devil exists, yet even some Christians act like materialists who ignore the threat of demonic deception. Marian Jacobs, author of that forthcoming book about fictional magic versus real magic, rejoins us to engage today’s real threats from real witchcraft.
- Enclave Publishing: Of Sea and Smoke by Gillian Bronte Adams
- Almost Paradise by Bryan Timothy Mitchell
- The Lorehaven Guild
- This episode acts as a sequel to episode 177, building on its extra ideas.
Reintroducing guest Marian Jacobs
Marian Jacobs has created Lorehaven stories since the first print issue, exploring Jesus, monsters, and spaceships. Her work has also featured at Desiring God and Stage and Story. Follow all Marian’s progress at MAJacobs.com. Sign up and get her free steampunk fantasy Automated. Her first nonfiction book, a scriptural analysis and guide to discerning fictional magic, is set for summer 2025 release from B&H Publishing.
1. Know that Satan uses witchcraft to deceive people
- We set this up a little in episode 177, which brought up the Salem issue.
- That “Witch Trials” podcast actually defended the Puritans of their time.
- But what if the accused really were practicing witchcraft? That’s still evil.
- No, we don’t believe in burning witches. But this remains a real threat.
- In the podcast, J. K. Rowling states she does not believe any magic exists.
- But for Christians, we do believe in supernatural reality and dark “magic.”
- Satan does not simply deceive people with bad ideas or physical attacks.
- Especially now, more people are choosing to join overt occult practices.
- Marian has now watched over seventy video testimonials of ex-pagans.
- She’s been able to detect trends and patterns behind their deceptions.
2. Beware the old trap of acting like materialists
- In response, Christians can basically mimic the materialism we reject.
- For example, commentaries deny that Satan has real power in the Bible.
- Some leaders “explain away” Pharaoh’s magicians or false prophet tricks.
- Others think nonbelievers reject our faith because they lack information.
- We may act like logical arguments or emotional appeals are all we need.
- If only we were nicer, wiser, less/more politically active, stronger, fitter …
- Scripture warns our chief struggle is not against mere flesh and blood.
- We do wage a spiritual “war” against dark powers beyond humanity.
- Christians have erred in their methods of “spiritual warfare.” Yet it’s real.
- Embrace the “weird”: we believe in a risen Lord and truly dark monsters.
3. Help the devil’s prey find hope in a broken world
- Yet as we explored in episode 184, we do not resign ourselves to darkness.
- Yes, we believe in the devil’s real power. But we know Jesus defeats him.
- All devilish “miracles” are parasitic, a foreign ripoff of the genuine article.
- Occultic beliefs also appropriate biblical concepts and corrupt them.
- For example, the law of attraction about “manifesting” your good things.
- This parodies the Bible’s retribution principle about good bringing good.
- Christians meditate on truth; occult practitioners meditate on emptiness.
- Christians look forward to resurrection; the others expect reincarnation.
- We may accept an angelic “divine council”; others worship many gods.
- We haven’t even gotten into parodies of marriage, love, human nature.
- Many occultic beliefs blend with sociopolitical activism and sex-worship.
- Given such similarities, our conversations and stories can subvert the lies.
- What is the truth behind the lie? The original song behind the parody?
- But imagination, logic, and so forth won’t win. Pray, pray hard for souls!
- Christians do practice these old ways. They’re not cliche. They’re His gift.
- Where do you see the devil most active in your world?
- Do you have loved ones who are vulnerable to his wiles?
- How have you beheld Jesus win victories over Satan?
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- Recent article: Jenneth Dyck’s Disney Might Finally Learn Why It’s Failing
- Past review: Steal Fire From the Gods by Clint Hall (Oct. 27) and A Ranger’s Guide to Glipwood Forest by Andrew Peterson (Nov. 3)
Next on Fantastical Truth
Behold the darkly whimsical world and wholesome family adventures of The Wingfeather Saga! It’s a four-book series. It’s a growing collection of newer titles, including today’s newly released title. And of course, it’s an animated series on the Angel Studios streaming service. Explore the mysterious lands of Aerwiar with its many creatures to be fought, tamed, or trusted, thanks to our next guest: singer/songwriter/fantastical storyteller Andrew Peterson.
Explore the best Christian-made fantasy, sci-fi, and beyond, and apply these stories' meanings in the real world Jesus calls us to serve.