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The Importance Of Listening To Devils

June 24, 2015

“Satan’s got a bad reputation unfairly,” he said.

I’m not above a little debate even if it is with someone dressed in all black with black eyeliner that really lived up to its name, lining the whole eye.

“Go on,” I said.

“I’m talking about biblical Satan here, okay?”


“In the Old Testament, he’s a devil’s advocate, like the kind you’d find in any boardroom or law office. He doesn’t really believe in what he’s doing. He’s just doing his job, you know?”

“I don’t really.”

“In the book of Job, he’s just hanging out with God, devising ways to mess with Job. He basically treats Job like biblical Biff Lohman.”


Paul appeared beside me. He handed me a red Solo cup of a drink called a White Gummi Bear.

“Thanks,” I said. “Morgan was just telling me how Satan’s not that bad.”

“Just think about it,” Morgan said. “I mean, you’ve read the Bible, right?”

“I’ve seen a few of the movies,” Paul said helpfully.

“I went to church camp a few times,” I said apologetically.

“I just don’t get it,” Morgan shook his head. “I mean, they always say we’re living in a Christian nation and just about every person I talk to has either never read it or only ever just read parts. It’s only like a thousand pages. That’s like a fraction of the size of the ‘Game Of Thrones’ books and I know people that have read all of those a dozen times or more. And the Bible is a document that, like it or not, has shaped our world for over two thousand years. Put it by the toilet. Get it on audio. You can have James Earl Jones read it to you. James Earl Freaking Jones. I just don’t get it.”

“Are you a Christian?” Paul asked.

I braced. Who knew with Morgan? Morgan just stared at Paul with dead eyes. Paul shifted awkwardly and took a sip.

“I’m an atheist,” I volunteered.

Morgan shifted his dead stare to me.

“That still doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have read the Bible by now. Don’t you want to know what’s going on in the world around you? Don’t you want to know what caused it? What has retarded human advancement? They put Galileo to death because of what’s in that book, a book that’s been telephoned so many times that Jesus was probably really called Natalie and was a transgender.”


“You know the children’s game ‘Telephone’? You whisper in one person’s ear then they whisper into the next and after thirteen or fourteen whispers you see what you have. That’s basically how the Bible has been for two thousand years among thousands, millions of people. Think of how many new editions of the bible have come out in your lifetime that have significant changes to the text, the Modern English version, the Message Bible, The CBE version the list goes on. It’s just a giant exercise in groupthink and it sucks. It’s horrible on a lot of levels. It’s more boring than Paul’s face.”

“Nice,” said Paul. He looked stricken. “Is my face boring?”

“Why are we even talking about this?” Morgan said.

“You were telling me how Satan isn’t that bad and how he’s like a devil’s advocate.”

“Funny,” Paul said.

“His job is to prosecute, to make the case to God that mankind is flawed and that everyone deserves to burn forever in fire and brimstone. He doesn’t own Hell anymore than a district attorney owns prison. God owns everything including Hell. Satan just makes sure Hell stays full, like an American prison.”

“That’s interesting.”

“It wasn’t until Jesus came along that we got this modern interpretation of the devil, of Satan as someone who delights in evil. Nothing could be further from the truth. He delights in rooting out evil, to exposing it. We should be praising him. He’s like Snowden.”

“The winter mascot for Target stores in the nineties?” Paul joked.

“I just think he gets a bad rap is all,” Morgan concluded.

“I will not be so quick to condemn the devil next time,” I said with mock sobriety.

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