Why does he call this “the gospel” of Satan? Because “the best trick of the devil is getting you to think his ideas aren’t just yours, but even God’s. So he creates his own ‘gospel,’ a perversion of the real one. It sounds like good news because it appears to answer questions we’ve always had, satisfy desires we’ve always felt, solve mysteries we’ve always pondered. If he can give his lies the ring of truth, so much the better.”
Satan is many things. But one fact the Bible makes perfectly clear is that he is a liar. Already by the third chapter of the Bible he has been deceitful (taking a physical form that is not his), he has been deceptive (getting people to question whether God is as good as they had thought), and he has told outright lies (full-out contradicting the words of God). And that’s just in the first three chapters! If Satan is such a liar and, in the fact, “the father of lies,” it should come as no surprise that he continues to float lies meant to confuse, deceive, and destroy human beings. Eight of these lies form the heart of Jared Wilson’s new book The Gospel According to Satan: Eight Lies about God that Sound Like the Truth.
To understand the purpose of the book, it is helpful to consider its origins. Wilson tells about going into a bookstore and spotting a copy of Wm. Paul Young’s non-fiction work Lies We Believe About God (read my review). This was a kind of follow-up to his mega-selling novel The Shack, and one that was meant to make plain some of the aberrant theology he may have merely hinted at in his fiction work. As Wilson read the table of contents and skimmed through the book, he realized “If the devil wrote a book about God, it might read just like this.” And voila!—a book was born.
That’s not to say that The Gospel According to Satan is exactly a rebuttal to Young, though Wilson certainly does address some of his claims. Rather, Young’s work got Wilson thinking about the kinds of lies Satan tells people in the world today—lies that have just enough of a ring of truth and are repeated often enough that people fall for them. Even some Christians fall for them.