I’ve been working on a book for about six years, “Satan’s History of the United States”. I originally intended to model it after Schweikart and Allen’s best seller Patriot’s History of the United States, which is distinctive because, unlike standard chronological histories, it’s riddled with moral and cultural observations that highlight the uniqueness of America and Americans, as compared to all the histories of the world that had gone before it.
In my view we have not yet reached, as some believe, the Gibbons “decline and fall” phase of our history. This is because our makeup is manifestly different than that which comprised the Roman, or any other civilization, that had gone before us.
Our genetic makeup is different. We are a case of first instance. Our genetic cultural makeup is not the same as the other empire civilizations, and it would take several generations for our culture to regress.
So far there is no ancient or even primordial tug pulling us into the abyss where Rome or Greece fell. At least in my view.
But we are nearing another tipping point (there have been others) where we have to decide whether we will write the script for our failure or add more chapters to the story as to why America, as created, is so unique. The way we ended slavery was one. The way we went from Anglo-Saxon to becoming a polyglot of cultures, a melting pot, while holding onto those unique core principles, was another.
You see, America changed everything for Satan. Actually, it expanded the dilemma Satan faced because of Christ, for it proved that the virtues taught by Christ could be blended into the common soil of a peoples from the farmstead instead of from the royal court. America flipped the Devil’s world plan and his world view.
The reason the Devil was caught unawares in 1787 is that he’d dozed through over 175 years of this little laboratory experiment in North America simple because it was nothing but a bunch of farmers and fishermen who settled this territory. He continued to manage his worldwide corporate affairs as he’d always done, from the front office of the top floor of his executive office building for the past thousand years.
It would take another century before he would clearly see the enormous potential, and threat, this little upstart posed to his worldwide empires and creations.
Satan took it personally. Still does.
That is, if you believe is that sort of thing.
This is why I need to lay the groundwork in my “Devil’s History” of just how Satan managed his properties and caused History to happen, compared to how God managed His properties. That’s called “background” in government bureaucracy-speak.
First, it wasn’t exactly eyeball-to-eyeball, for while Satan hated God, he was never his equal. He hated that too..
However God arranged His front office, they didn’t have casual Fridays, or weekly chat sessions. The archangels knew their stations, all except Satan, or Lucifer as some chroniclers called him. And that is likely why he jumped ship. JRR Tolkien, of “Lord of the Rings” fame, in The Silmarillion, surmised that God, before the world was born, gave his angels themes from which to compose beautiful music. Satan, the most talented of the archangels, didn’t like either the music style or the collaboration, so composed music that threw discord into the themes God had desired. After two or three aborted attempts Satan/Lucifer either jumped ship or was expelled.
If you’re into music, let’s imagine that Beethoven’s lead violinist was Keith Richards, and Keith just had this totally different sound banging around in his head, and he argued and complained with Ludwig, but to no avail ….not just because of different tastes in music, but Keith actually believed he was the better song writer in the first place.
Now Larry Schweikart, who co-authored Patriot’s History, just mentioned, was a drummer for the rock band Steppenwolf, so would probably disagree with how I depicted this hatred of Satan for God. But Tolkien chose music as the meme, not me. Satan’s hatred arose out of jealousy (Envy), which is a major theme of Evil that has defined history since time began..
So Satan’s principal reason for being, then, has been to deny God His plans, and only secondarily, to acquire souls for his own domain in the underworld.
God’s execution of His themes do not seem to be a direct reaction to anything Satan had accomplished, or in anyway a direct attack on him. It’s as if Satan was simply a gnat in His ointment…which enrages Satan more.
The Devil wasn’t getting any respect.
This means God did not cause the creation of America just to annoy Satan. He was probably sticking to a plan He’d begun at least with his Covenant with Abraham, 4000 years earlier. God knows Satan will always be there, striking at His heel. Again, an annoyance. A fly in the buttermilk.
Keep that in mind. God’s powers are limitless, but He works with rules that He imposed upon Himself since Eve took that first bite. The contest between Good and Evil was always a contest about choices that only Man can make.
So, if you do believe in this sort of thing, Satan’s war with God go back millennia, all the way to the Garden. The wars that Old Clootie carried on against God, first with his snake dance in the Garden, and then the snake godheads he created to steer people toward his own brand of worship, are a book unto themselves. An interesting history, I need only to outline those several thousands of years into a few pages as background for this tale of America and the Devil.
Satan’s clear sailing through History turned on a dime with the appearance, execution and resurrection of God’s Son, Jesus.
Again, you don’t have to believe this, but the facts are unarguable that 40 days after Jesus’ fabled resurrection, the Word that Christ had arisen went out in 120 different directions, and Satan was caught entirely flatfooted. I remind you, this is a fact, an unarguable, historical fact, even if you prefer not to believe any of that Son of God stuff. At that moment, slowly at first, but historically measurable, the world, at its roots, began to drift away from the top-down management plan that had controlled for thousands of years.
Fact: When the Word went out the world began to change. Period. And the snookered-once-again Satan would have to go back to his drawing board. It would take him about 800 years to regain at least partial control of the world as he’d always known it, only as the “spiritual head of only half the world, while the political head of the whole of it.” (Mark Twain.)
Satan’s blind spot was his being totally enraptured by managing from the front office. After all, he had created the whole management concept of the “Front Office” from the time that Man began writing, trading, and organizing labor, around the Bronze Age, circa 5000 BC.
From that time to Christ, Satan was both the political and spiritual head of the whole world. He even proclaimed this fact when he encountered Christ in the Wilderness, for he offered Christ all the kingdoms of the world if Jesus would just switch sides. He knew why Jesus…well, actually, only thought he knew why…the Son of God had come to earth. And offered Jesus a deal.
The Devil guessed wrong, and would soon find himself losing ground as both the political and spiritual head of the world. To staunch the bleeding he had to give some spiritual ground to reclaim his political realm, by allowing the king system, which he’d invented much earlier, to do a power-sharing agreement with the still relatively new Church, which ostensibly belonged to God.
Soon Satan would begin to feel secure again in his new relationship with God’s minions on earth since his kings were totally in charge of the Church’s protection. Year after year the kings grew in appetites and greed, despite their relationship with the Church, and it grew even larger as that link with the Church(es) and God diminished, from Napoleon to Marx, where the state had become a god unto itself, taking on many shapes.
So far they have failed but at great cost to mankind. But that they failed at all is due to those same two interventions by God into Man’s affairs in the First Century and 18th Century…both events coming about while Satan snoozed.
Since 1787 Satan has had to adapt and improvise and work with an entirely different class of people. I imagine he hasn’t had to wash his hands as often since he first pulled the Egyptians out of the muck during the Bronze Age. In all those centuries Satan had never had to get up-close and personal with people who had dirt under their fingernails, but in America, and even in Europe, more and more of those leaders, good and evil, arose from dirt gardens he hadn’t planted.
Let’s just say Satan had to become a soil scientist; a spiritual agronomist. And he’s gotten pretty good at it. His only problem is that he is two millennia behind the original planting of that soil. Today, removing all memory of that Original Husbandman is his primary objective, as well as the Farmers’ Almanac He bequeathed Mankind.
But Old Clootie is making inroads.
I’m writing this to elicit comments, suggestions, ideas, as to how this story might unfold, since the final chapters of the story will likely be many years after we’re gone in the making.
Watching Satan try to regain his spurs since 1787 is an interesting tale…
…even if you don’t believe in that sort of thing.
I like where you are going with this and anxiously await the next installment.
An initial observation for you to ponder is to suggest that, of all the other things Satan might be, he is also a quick study in human frailty and weakness. Consider this fairly abstract analogy –
You mentioned our having dealt with slavery correctly, and for all the right reasons, but it is also true that doing the right thing came at a cost. Citizens ceded just a little more power to the ruling class… In that case, de facto anointing them with the power of final say over the ” some several States. This is not terribly different, from a broader perspective, from the beginnings of the Roman collapse. We have repeated this more recently with our national reaction to 9/11 by – once again – handing over control of our lives and our personal privacy and security to the central ruling Authority and then largely washing our hands of the issue.
I agree that Satan was too full of himself to notice s the young upstart American experiment, initially, but he has never been a fool about weaknesses in societal structures and trying to twist them to his advantage.
Keep them coming Vassar… This is good stuff!
I won’t entirely agree about ceding power to the feds over slavery. The Union and Lincoln would have failed had not 4M plus young men volunteered to go end slavery, (almost no one was drafted). “No greater love….” 600K of them died, securing that victory. And as for taking away the states’ rights, actually law only clarified that it was illegal. Secession and nullification are powers before they are ever illegal. Or even immoral. States could do all that over again, and the federal govt would have to apply force all over again. Ike sending troops to Miss-Alabame to open schools to blacks. Those options are always on the table and we’re being tested again…esp w/ sanctuary cities.
My own view about Satan is that he works entirely within the four-corners of the 7 cardinal sins, daring the 7 virtues to trump them. He works up the screenplay, sets the choreography and directs the action, each actor playing according to his nature. That’s what he’s good at. But he almost always overlooks some small, miniscule player who steps in to mess up the finale. I have several vignettes from Caiaphas at the Tomb to the French defeat of the English navy at Yorktown. I’m always looking for any example.
My apologies for being imprecise; I am not suggesting that ceding power to the feds ever had anything to do with slavery. As I understand history, and you are far more well-versed in these things than I am, that war did not start because of slavery but ending slavery certainly brought the war to a quicker end. Intentionally avoiding the rabbit hole of the slavery debate back then, it is my intention only to point out that, in terms of federal power, Lincoln laid waste to the notion that America was any longer a collection of “the some several States” protected from excessive intrusion or intervention at the Federal level by the Tenth Amendment.
My favorite silly example, just to illustrate just how far things have gone away from the Constitutional protection the founders had hoped to provide is seat belt laws. In today’s America, the federal government coerces “the some several States” into adopting seat belt laws and if the states don’t comply, their share of Federal Highway dollars is withheld. That is not the flavor of autonomy the founders had in mind. I maintain that the prosecution of the Civil War was the first drips in the dike of the flood of federal power grabs that have made us what we are today. And your Sanctuary City example is a perfect case in point.
I see what you mean. Didn’t look at it that way, and you’re right, no way we could nullifying our way out of seat belts in cars. Or all the other mandatory stuff they put in cars today. But on paper it would be argued that we the people authorized out representatives in Congress to order car mfg’ers to do these things. Making sure that “we the people” are the point men of the bargain is what’s on the table now. A rambunctious “we the people” can undo a lot of things, I think. Give us 40 years.
40 years 🙂 You’re starting to sound a lot like St Augustine my old friend: “Give me chastity and continence, but not yet.”