George Pitcher is an Anglican vicar. He is also a columnist for the Daily Telegraph and he has the following article on his blog. You can see the original by clicking here.
English satanic practices always make me smile. They conjure up images of very white, fat people dancing around clumsily in a wood. So when I read our story today that a vicar in the Forest of Dean is seeing signs of “dark forces”, I’m afraid I was reminded more of Ghostbusters than of The Omen.
But the Rev Nick Bromfield, rector of Drybrook, Lydbrook and Ruardean, is taking it all very seriously: “It might sound medieval to talk about the relationship between good and evil, but there is no middle ground on this. People need to leave well alone.”
Oh, c’mon, Rev Nick. We’re not talking about Old Nick here, are we? All that classical theistic Greek dualism, which gave us the battle between God and the Devil, with the great eschatological battle fought out at the Cross of Calvary? Are you mates with Mel Gibson? Or perhaps you just didn’t like finding a sheep’s head impaled on a stake outside one of your churches?
I agree that’s not very nice, least of all for the sheep, but are we still really talking about a Miltonesque battle for dominion between the powers of darkness and light? I don’t think so. Evil is the absence of the divine in humanity, made potent by the power of human imagination gone wrong. So I agree that humans obviously have a capacity for great evil. But because they are possessed by the Prince of Darkness? No. There’s only room for one deity here.
Still, the Rev Nick may not be sensing a whiff of sulphur after all. In fact, he might not be into fallen angels at all. He might be taking the St Michael. Because he also says that it might be “our ‘friends’ from that sphere of activity sending a tribute because we are successful.”
Oh, I see. Atheists. That makes much more sense. Prof Richard Dawkins has yet to send me a severed sheep’s head to the Telegraph’s offices, but it’s only a matter of time.
This is entirely typical of "liberal" Christianity that denies the presence of evil. It's pretty much a believe what you want attitude and it's the reason the Anglican Communion finds themselves in the terrible mess they are in right now.
This is how the Father of Lies works - he convinces people that he doesn't exist. Note the Reverend's comment that "There’s only room for one deity here". Just the response the Devil is looking for.
And as for St Michael, well...
defend us in battle;
be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray:
and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
by the power of God,
thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls.
ht Fr Dwight