Temptation on the mount

In the ancient rite of baptism the catechumen (after many prayers of exorcism and the anointing with the oil of exorcism) spits to the West, renounces Satan, and turns to the East where the ‘Son of righteousness’ shines.

In our world, like Christ on the mountain, we are tempted to have ‘all the kingdoms of the world.’ We are tempted to have it all without God, without Christ.

How do you ‘renounce Satan?’ What do you do to ‘spit to the West’ and face Christ?

4 thoughts on “Temptation on the mount

  1. Cornell West came to our church again a couple weeks ago, he talekd about something called Socratic self examination. It takes a lot of guts to examine oneself, and take an honest look at where we are at as opposed to where we think we are at, or try to project we are at to those around us.

  2. Well, I think one way “Satan” keeps us from turning our lives over to God is by deceiving us that we can manage our lives just fine on our own–with the proper input from therapist or weight loss coach or financial advisor or whatever. So we scurry about looking for our meaning in life from these experts, and as long as we keep ourselves distracted in this manner, we’ll never have to look to God, to Church, for this meaning.
    It seems that in the story of Jesus’ temptation, when Satan offers Jesus all the kingdoms of the world if he will only bow down and worship Satan, Jesus should have busted out laughing and said “You can’t give what doesn’t belong to you.” So that’s kind of how I think of the self-help genre as “Satan”–we can’t find life’s meaning by following the advice given, simply because that so-called meaning is only to be found in God. If that makes any sense.

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