Thursday, October 02, 2008

Gods and demons, II

I received a reply yesterday from "L____," the woman who had asked me about my view of gods and demons a couple of days ago.
Thank you for your prompt and thorough reply.

Just to clarify, we certainly do believe in demons (fallen angels) and their influence and power in this world. In no way do we view them as mythical or imaginary. Our view is that they go around causing havoc as "assistants", so to speak, of Satan himself, but do not have greater power than their leader.

When we read "The gods of the Aztecs were actually demons", this really caused us to wonder. Let's take Huitzilopochtli, for example. He had to have been a very powerful demon to have had such sway over the Aztec people (i.e. that they would slaughter thousands of people daily just to appease him). In our minds, because the Atzecs were without the living God, and left to themselves, they were simply manifesting the lowest form of human depravity. It never occured to us that they may have been directly influenced by a demon.

So, if we understand you correctly, you are saying that the Aztecs (and all races that worship false gods for that matter) are directly influenced by the evil spiritual forces that live among them - that their "gods" are actually real demons exerting their evil influence upon them.

What my daughter was trying to get her mind around (me too, after she asked the question!) is if demons can manifest themselves as actual "gods" to people. So, then, the "gods" of this world as mentioned throughout scripture and pagan history have been fallen angels, and not just mythology?

Would it be safe to say that all cultures that worship false gods are "possessed" by demons? Does man, then, have no part in creating the "gods" we read about throughout history, like Zeus and Thor? Or, do demons manifest themselves to humans and we simply give them form (to nuture our own depraved minds)?

We know that humans do bow down to Satan himself, so why not his minions?

I guess it's a revelation for us to think that the "gods" of this world are not really mythological beings (figments of the imagination) but spiritual beings and, therefore, real!

I hope I haven't confused you. This is a difficult subject to articulate!

Thank you again for help to enlighten us.

In Christ (thankfully!),

Her query inspired me to a new way of expressing my thoughts:
Ah! Linda!

Thank you for the clarification.

So if I understand you accurately, Lydia's and your question is really: "Are all the false gods demons, or are some [or maybe most, or possibly, even, all] 'simply' figments of different people's imaginations?"

If I have understood that question accurately, then I would be willing to step up to the plate and suggest that I believe some may, in fact, be "merely" figments of people's imaginations. BUT . . . as people give themselves to worship and serve these gods-of-their-imaginations . . . they really are serving demonic forces. So . . .

How about this?

The false 'gods' that arise as figments of people's imaginations may not, in themselves, be demons. Maybe it may be more accurate to describe them as demonic corporations or some such. Kind of like: "Sonlight Curriculum, Ltd., is not a group of people. It is a corporation that has been established and is run by people. It--the corporation--has an existence of its own apart from the people who own and operate it. When Sarita and I die, supposing Sonlight Curriculum, Ltd. is in existence at that point in time, it will be able to continue to exist. Because it--Sonlight Curriculum, Ltd.--isn't 'just' John and Sarita Holzmann.

Maybe a better example: Perhaps the false 'gods' are more like brands that certain demons have gained the right to own and use for their nefarious ends. And when they get people to believe in and worship and serve their 'god brands' . . . the demons who 'own' the brands are able to lead the brand-followers down some pretty wicked paths. I think of the Molech 'god brand' that requires child sacrifice. . . .

I was talking with someone just last week about what goes on in India. He said that in Orissa, there is child sacrifice today . . . as parents and/or community leaders desire to appease the gods. The man who spoke with me suggested--without hesitation--that this child sacrifice is Molech worship, a direct descendant of what we read about in the Bible.

I don't know if that helps or not. I'm very much "thinking off the top," here. But (or, rather, and) I very much appreciate your questions and pushing forward on this with me.

Yes, thankful to be in Christ,

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