Arvid came home from high school and found a packet waiting for him at the dinner table. It was hastily wrapped in gray paper. From the shape of it, it was either a box of chocolates or a book. Most likely a book, though one could always hope.
"It's from Paulus" informed his mother, hovering nearby as usual. "Presumably Susanne's Paulus, not St Paul?" "Don't blaspheme, Arvid." "Why not? It is clearly written in the scripture that all blasphemy shall be forgiven, save only blasphemy agains the Holy Ghost. You show me any other sin that Jesus has said will be forgiven." "No sin will be forgiven unless you repent. You need ..." "Hey, I'm trying to show that I've read the Scriptures here! You should be so proud of me! What kind of parents are you who don't encourage your children to believe in the Scriptures just the way they are?"
Man, it felt good guilt-tripping the professional guilt-tripper.
Hastily opening the wrap, he found that not only was it a book, it was a rather old looking one. Not because it was used - it seemed almost new - but because of the weird looking letters. And the plain cover displaying its title: "The Vileness of Sorcery".
"Paulus came driving with it. He wanted you to have it as soon as possible. The Lord had spoken to him in a dream, telling him that you needed it." "IN A DREAM??" "Hush, boy, don't scream! You just said that you have read the Scriptures, then you know that the holy men often got messages in dreams." "What did he say about that dream? Tell me!" "He just said that. A voice from beyond had told him to bring the book to you in all haste. So he came here shortly after you were gone, and asked me to make sure it was given to you as soon as you came home." "So."
The vileness of sorcery? In a dream? This was too uncanny. He had just dreamt about magic, in great detail, and now this. Were these dreams somehow connected?
On his mother's demand, he ate his food before it grew cold. But his mind was on the book, and the dreams. As soon as he was finished eating, he grabbed the book, leaving the dishes for his mother as always.
The Origin of Sorcery and the Taint of the Serpent.
The witches, warlocks and sorcerers of our days do their evil works in secret; but it has not always been thusly. Their tradition can be traced back to the time of Simon Magus, also called Simon Magnus, the greatest sorcerer ever known. His evil is described in the Acts of the Apostles, chapter eight:
"But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one: To whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, This man is the great power of God. And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries." Verses 9-11.
"But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity." Verses 20-23.
Yeah, that sounded familiar. But where was the Serpent in all this? The mention of serpents all of a sudden was nearly as creepy as the whole dream thing.
But it is known to the Saints that this man did not repent; rather he went forth and created the False Church, and from him comes all heresy and sorcery and all the false doctrines of the Devil; it is all due to the evil of sorcery, that corrupts the mind. And because this man Simon practiced the ancient sorcery of Babylon, therefore is the False Church named Babylon the Great, just as Simon had named himself the Great. And this is how the man ended his days: So great was his sorcery that he at least decided to ascend to Heaven, as our good Lord had done. And on a dedicated day, he assembled his followers and he started to ascend. But as the apostles saw this, they prayed to the Lord; and the Lord cast him down from a great height, and he died. Thus was the name of the Lord glorified; but those who were steeped in sorcery, held fast with sorcery, and they became the ancestors of all witches and warlocks and false prophets.
All well and good. Bring on the serpents already! Skimming ahead ... Babylon ... false gods ... not suffer a witch to live ... necromancy ... evil spirits ... the Flood ...
For it was for the sake of Sorcery that the Great Flood wiped away all men, save only for the righteous Noah and his sons. And for the sake of their seed, the sons of Noah must needs bring their wives with them, one of each color; but the wife of Japhet was a sorceress. And she seduced her husband into evil, so that he blasphemed his righeous father, and was exiled and his children marked for thralldom forever more.
But how then came sorcery first into the world? It came with the fall; for the Serpent led our first parents to the tree of knowledge. And the tree of knowledge was of good and evil, which are now called "white magick" and "black magick". They are both equally evil, because they come from Hell and lead to Hell. And the Serpent seduced the woman, and the woman seduced the man. And our first parents became sorcerers, and for the knowledge that was within them from the Tree, they knew of all kinds of magick and sorcery, so that no thing was impossible for them save only life eternal, which God denied them. And they taught their son Cain the ways of sorcery, but when they saw what it wrought, they belatedly repented and they begged with tears their third son that he never touch the evil of the Serpent.
But when it is written that "sons of God" went in to the daughters of man and took among them wives, who they wanted, then we know that God does not have any other sons but the One. These "sons of God" were serpents too, who assumed a form of perfect beauty; for they could change shapes through the sorcery of the Great Serpent. And they took on themselves a godlike form and passed themselves as gods, as they also did later, and thus came all the heathen religions to our world: For people in the darkness of their minds worshipped the serpents as gods. And the serpents taught them all manner of vile sorcery.
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