SIMI VALLEY, Calif. — A California pastor who is known for his warnings about the glorification of evil by Hollywood and the secular music industry has weighed in on reports that Netflix has decided to pick up the fourth season of the fantasy police drama “Lucifer” and the fact that a number of professing Christians are defending the show in asserting that it contains a positive message that if Satan can be redeemed by God, then anyone can.
“One of the ridiculous lies that is promoted in the show ‘Lucifer’ is that Satan was somehow redeemed by God, and that his redemption shows that all of us have hope––no matter how wicked we choose to be,” Joe Schimmel, pastor of Blessed Hope Chapel in Simi Valley, California and host of the documentary “Hollywood’s War on God,” wrote in a recent blog post.
He noted that in the third season of the fictional drama, Lucifer Morningstar’s angel wings are restored, and his older angelic brother Amenadiel suggests, “Perhaps Father is trying to show you that you’ve been forgiven. Brother, if you can be redeemed, that means that anyone can. Now isn’t that divine?”
For this reason and others, a number of professing Christians and “Lucifans” have defended the broadcast, arguing, “[The show is] about redemption. If the devil can be redeemed, then there’s hope for the rest of us sad sacks of human flesh” and “I ask you, who needs more forgiving than the devil himself … its core argument is all about the power of redemption.”
“While some would like us to believe that the show is just harmless fiction, and will not affect how anyone sees the devil, such quotations prove that the show is influencing a number of professing Christians, who are in fact repeating the ridiculous lies taught through narratives in the show, i.e, that Satan has been or can be redeemed!” Schimmel lamented.
He said that while it is true that men who repent of their sins and put their trust in Christ can indeed be redeemed, Jesus did not die for the fallen angels. Schimmel also noted that the Scriptures outline that Lucifer is not going to repent, but will go on deceiving the nations until the very end.
“It is not only a deceptive lie to claim that the devil could be redeemed, but also a serious falsehood to believe that he has, or will (sometime in the foreseeable future) reform his ways,” he contended.
“The Lord Jesus Christ said of Satan, ‘He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies’ (John 8:44b). All you have to do is read the last few chapters of the Book of Revelation to see that Satan goes on deceiving the masses right up until the time he is finally thrown into the lake of fire (Revelation 20-22).”
While the official promotional description of the show describes Lucifer (Tom Ellis) as “charming, charismatic and devilishly handsome,” Schimmel notes that the television series also does indeed portray the devil, who works as a a crime fighter in America’s City of Angels, as blaspheming God and influencing others to commit sin. He points to the episode “A Priest Walks Into a Bar,” in which Lucifer curses God after a seemingly innocent person dies.
“You cruel, manipulative [expletive]! Was this all part of Your plan? It’s all just a game to You, isn’t it? Eh?” Lucifer vents. “Well, I know punishment, and he did not deserve that. He followed Your stupid rules and it still wasn’t good enough! So what does it take to please You? Break Your rules and you fall! Follow them and you still lose! Doesn’t matter whether you’re a sinner! Doesn’t matter whether you’re a saint! Nobody can win, so what’s the point? What’s the [expletive] point?”
In the same episode, Lucifer engages in conversation inside a Roman Catholic confessional, as a woman arrives to seek help with her struggle with lustful thoughts.
“[D]on’t feel bad. You have those desires for a reason. You should act on them,” he says. “I mean, you can always come back here, confess, and all will be forgiven. Isn’t that how this system of yours works?”
“We can see why certain lawless people would love to believe Satan is saved in all his unrepentant wickedness,” Schimmel remarked. “Because if the devil is Heaven bound, despite his ongoing campaign to tempt the wicked to rebel against God, then surely we can all go on Heaven, despite our own personal rebellion against God and His moral law.”
“Of course, it is all a lie and a pipe dream! For as we have seen, Jesus did not die for the devil and, moreover, Satan is not repentant anyway. Those who are banking on going to Heaven because of the delusion that even the devil is saved should be aware of the fact that Jesus warned that unless we repent we will perish (Luke 13:3, 5). The Scriptures further warn ‘without holiness, no one will see the Lord’ (Hebrews 12:14b),” he warned.
As previously reported, other episodes—amid storylines of Lucifer’s assistance with solving murder mysteries in the city—feature aspects such as the demon Maze’s (“a fierce demon in the form of a beautiful young woman”) desire to return to Hell, Lucifer’s sexual relationship with a psychotherapist—along with other sexual references, and Lucifer’s “mother,” known as the former wife of God, who escapes from Hell and takes residence in a woman’s body until she is killed and carried to Heaven by Amenadiel.
“A reporter learns that Lucifer has been sleeping with Linda, who happens to be the reporter’s estranged wife,” a summary of the episode “Off the Record” reads.
Lucifer and crime-busting partner Chloe also kiss in various scenes, but Chloe enters a relationship with Marcus, who reveals that he is actually Adam and Eve’s son Cain, who murdered his brother. The show portrays Marcus/Cain as being immortal and explaining to Lucifer that he wants to die, but has unsuccessfully and repeatedly tried to kill himself. One clip on the “Lucifer” YouTube page is entitled “Pierce & Chloe Get Hot and Heavy In The Closet.”
Lucifer also gives a pentagram coin to a man intent on killing him, telling the gunman that while he had planned on using the coin to get back to Hell, perhaps the coin would help the man stay out of it. In another episode, Lucifer is committed to a psych ward with a man who identifies as God.
“I had no idea you were so angry with Me,” the man says.
“Really? Because I’ve been pretty up front about it,” the devil replies.
“But to want to destroy Me? That’s pretty serious. You mind telling Me why?” the man, portraying God, asks.
“Because I’m your son, and You rejected me,” Lucifer states.
“Oh. Well, then I can’t say that I blame you,” the man responds. “The fact of the matter is, I don’t know why I was ever so angry with you to begin with. For what it’s worth, I am sorry. I truly am, and I am proud of you, son of Hell. I am proud of the man you’ve become.”
During the third season, after regaining his wings and being advised that perhaps he had been forgiven, an unrepentant Lucifer, who acknowledges that he preys upon men’s desires and finds God’s rules to be “arbitrary,” continues living in his wickedness, but struggles with his thoughts, and at one point, “prepares to get his devil face back at any cost, until another victim’s life shakes his confidence.”
The program has a DLV rating for violence, profanity, coarse language and sexually suggestive dialogue.
However, some that defend the show contend that it has positive messages, such as in the very first episode, when Lucifer tells the musician Delilah—whom he had helped rise to fame by introducing her to people who owed him “favors”—that the devil didn’t make her do drugs and take topless selfies, but “the choices are on you” and that “God has nothing to do with your mess.” He then asks her to “pull herself together.”
Others, as aforementioned, assert that the show conveys a message of hope, that if the devil can be redeemed, anyone can. And some argue that the drama shouldn’t be taken seriously as it is fictional and based on a comic book series.
“It is truly tragic, and a sign of the evil times in which we live, that so few Christian leaders are warning about wicked shows that glorify evil like the show Lucifer,” Schimmel stated in his blog post. “Where is the outrage among God’s people? Have we become so accustomed to the dark that we no longer see it as darkness, but as light? God warned Ezekiel to stand up and warn his people against sin, lest their blood be upon his head (Ezekiel 18). He further warned against the false teachers who ‘put no difference between the holy and profane’ (Ezekiel 22:26, 44:23).”
“May the Lord have mercy on us for trying to justify evil in any form, or for any disloyalty we have shown Him in fraternizing with the enemy. If we sincerely love the Lord, we will hate evil and not try to justify it,” he said.
Video warning: Immoral content, language