There’s an alarming trend on the rise in the United States, according to a recent USA Today article about religious affiliation: nones are on the rise. Yeah, I spelled that right. I’m not talking about nuns in a convent, I’m talking about a rapidly growing group known as nones – people, who when asked about their religious affiliation in a survey, check the box that says, “None.”
Nones include atheists, agnostics, secular humanists, and people who have convinced themselves that they believe in “nothing in particular.”
Side note: everyone believes in something, even if they say they don’t.
The subtitle of the article says, “A growing number of Americans couldn’t care less about God.” Although that’s sad to hear, it’s not surprising. The part that concerns me most is the other side of the coin. Not only do they not care about or believe in God, but their thoughts are similar when it comes to the Bible and Satan…and that’s dangerous.
The Bible doesn’t mess around when it speaks of Satan.
Peter called him “a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.”
John, in the book of Revelation, reveals 5 names for him: “the great dragon,” “that serpent of old,” “the Devil,” “Satan,” and “the accuser of our brethren.”
The differences between he and God are many, but one of the main ways is how they operate.
Psalm 19 says that “the heavens declare the glory of God” and Romans 1 says that due to the proof of nature all around us, we are “without excuse” when it comes to believing God. Nature isn’t the only way He reveals Himself, though – that’s just general revelation. He’s also revealed Himself through what we’d call special revelation: the Bible, the Holy Spirit living inside of us, and even at times, coming down to speak with people. The Bible says that God desires all to come to repentance – He wants everyone to know about Him. In fact, in Revelation, He goes out of His way to get people’s attention: a group of 144,000 witnesses in Revelation 7, 2 surpernaturally-empowered witnesses in Chapter 11, and even angels that fly through the sky warning everyone in every language of God’s wrath and mercy.
While God works hard at telling the whole world, Satan does the opposite – he flies under the radar. We live in a culture where people are clamoring for attention and trying to make a name for themselves. However, Satan would much rather be filed under the same category as Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. If people think he’s a fairy tale, they’re not threatened by him.
That’s why an unprecedented amount of Nones in the U.S. is alarming to me. Satan loves for people to check that box because he knows those people are easy targets.
The Bible is very clear about the existence of Satan, his plans, his hatred, as well as his defeat and eternal punishment. Last Sunday at Awaken, I taught through Revelation 12, which is one of those passages that pulls back the curtain on the often-overlooked battle that’s been waging for our souls for thousands years. It was an eternity-changing message for at least 3 people on Sunday, and I hope challenging to many more. You can watch or listen to it in our Awaken Church teaching archive.
Here’s the point: don’t check “None.” Not believing in something doesn’t cause it to cease to exist. You’re playing right into Satan’s hand when you rule him out as a fairy tale.