Savage Chickens doesn’t usually seem particularly deep, in my experience. Maybe this wasn’t meant as particularly deep either. Art is like that though: you get to see things in it that weren’t necessarily explicitly meant by the author. Then again, maybe there is always something deep, and it’s purely my experience that is lacking?
I see satire, commenting on a section of the population that subscribes to ancient world-views, where a common diagnosis for some medical condition would be “possession by a demon”, with the cure naturally being an exorcism. Our world-view has moved on, and we now have a different way of looking at the world.
My point? You don’t have to believe in demonic possession to be a Christian. I don’t. (Though some might want to argue I don’t adhere to their definition of Christianity. So what?) Go check out Real Live Preacher‘s clip, Reading the Bible – Demons, part of his series on How to Read the Bible.
RLP responded to an anonymous user that asked…
How do you account for the fact that the demons in these stories spoke? They actually talked back to Jesus. What do you make of that if the demonic is just a matter of “first century worldview”?
Also, would you then discount Satan as a personal being?
…with the following:
First, I don’t discount the possibility of the demonic. What I said was as follows:
1. Everyone in the ancient world believed in demons and attributed all sorts of illnesses to them.
2. We know more about diseases now, and we deal with them in other ways.
Those two facts are not disputable.
I don’t feel that I have to blame everything on the demonic. And I don’t really think very much about the reality of the demonic when I read these stories. I just read the stories as given.
As for the demons speaking, the gospels record PEOPLE speaking in the voices of demons. Who knows what the reality was.
I don’t know about Satan. I tend to discount Satan’s existence as a personal being, yes. But I don’t care enough about Satan to even have a strong opinion on that.
Good response, humble as always. Anyway, I also see Satan as a personification of evil, rather than “a personal being”. And I think demons do not exist in a physical sense. That doesn’t rule out their possible existence in some metaphorical sense, of course. Comments?