Again, as part of the Youth Alpha theme last night on "How Can I Resist Evil" - we touched on this question.... What is our picture of Satan?
We pulled up various images of the personification of evil including Darth Vader, Voldemort and the iconic man with horns and tail on your shoulder..... but then there's this.
Here we have a cute wee girl in a Devil costume. She looks SO lovely.... but think again...... If the Devil is the very personification of evil, pain, disease, hatred, violence, misery, lies, horror..... how strange is it that we would want to actually to re-package the things we hold dear to us - in the Devil's image. Do we want to deny the true horror of evil? Are we more comfortable with a cuddly Devil teddy? etc etc.
I don't really mind the picture of this girl in a Devil suit...... it's a Halloween costume..... (which is a different and yet obviously linked subject) but we brought this up at Youth Alpha just in passing. We wanted to ask the question "What does the Devil look like to you" - or, perhaps more importantly, how does he make you feel?
I wanted to be clear in our discussions yesterday that, if he is to be the enemy of all things good and, if we are in a battle with him every day, perhaps we need to get a good picture of what we're dealing with as we put on God's armour (Ephesians 6 vs10-20) We have to defend ourselves, and remember too - As we are Light of the Word (Matthew 5 v14) - we need to attack!
Sure, if the symbolism doesn't bother you, dress your daughter up as Satan.... I didn't write this to get into a Christians & Halloween (etc) hot potato debate - but, whatever you decide, just remember that by re-shaping the Devil into something harmless, fun and loveable, you might have accidentally helped society to further dumb down the truth behind evil.
Surely, facing up to the harsh realities of the pain in the world is the first step towards resisting evil. After all, if evil looks like something attractive, there's nothing to resist!