Please Note: This is Part 3 of the story. Part 1 is online here http://www.republibot.com/content/original-fiction-twilight-gods-charlie... and part 2 is online here http://www.republibot.com/content/original-fiction-twilight-gods-part-2-...
“And angels who did not keep their own domain,
but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in
eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of
the great day.”
—The Epistle of Jude
“Our journey has gone well, these two days, Father.”
“Yes, Seneca, the Lord is with us in strength, even as he was with us in our weakness in the fortnight’s storm.”
“A terrible storm it was.”
“Do you believe we will stand safe to the pagan tree?”
“Three days’ journey yet to Geismar? We may still find a storm or two, eh Thomas?”
“I would prefer to stay dry, Father. But I will follow through these storms to see the stroke of your axe.”
“Yes, well my axe disappeared with our horse. We shall need another.”
“I heard in the village yesterday that many have gone ahead of us to the grove. They want to see you struck down.”
“They are fools, Thomas,” said Seneca. They worship false gods of stone and wood which have no power.”
“None brother?” quipped Boniface.
And Seneca knew an exposition was forthcoming from his tutor’s lips.
“Surely, Father, you don’t believe there is any power let alone truth in these pagan lies. Our Saint Paul said these gods were but dead objects.”
“He did. It is true that we have more to fear from the Teuton kings who come to meet us, whose paths we must avoid lest they attack us before the day truth can be shown them. But even so, let us walk and consider other holy scriptures.”
And they walked, the forboding forest now a beauty of light and shadow around them in the day sun.
“It is true,” continued the Bishop, “that I am most likely to succeed in God’s strength or die at the hand of one who would not see the desecration of their holy site—what they would not see desecrated, I would see cleansed that they might be freed of the scales that cloud their eyes. Freed to truth.
“But we cannot forget those enemies we cannot see and must remain diligent in prayer. I first understood the nature of a mission to these unreached nations when I read a peculiar passage in the second book of Moses. God did not send Moses merely to rescue His children, nor to punish Pharoah, but to pass judgment on the gods of Egypt as well. If there is nothing real of these gods then who was to be punished?”
Seneca and Thomas puzzled at this.
“Do you believe,” Thomas ventured, “that these gods were demons?”
“Nodding his head: “Lucifer and his allies fell because they wanted to be God. What better for them than to fool men into worshipping them instead of God. I believe we go to be as Moses. As the light of Christ spreads into dark worlds, the gods of old fall and are left with nothing but to be the usurping creatures of malevolence men then see them to be.”
“But is not Satan bound in chains as Saint Peter says—he and his horde?” asked Seneca.
“Many would say that this is indeed the truth, my son. Saint Jude speaks likewise. But let us also remember how in Job the devil wonders the earth and even comes into heaven. And let us not forget Paul who writes that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood,” but it is against the forces of ‘this dark world.’
“What then of Peter and Jude, and the angels in chains?”
“Here, Seneca, is where you must follow your companion’s example. Thomas has learned to read beyond his Latin scripture and is reading in Greek. Do you know the word Tartarus, Seneca?”
“Among the Greeks of old it is hell.”
“Not quite. Say more.”
“Oh…well, there is Hades the place of the dead and Tartarus the place of the elder gods—the death to which the undying divine are sent.”
“Excellent. In scripture the damned dead likewise go to Hades. Peter chose the word Tartarus, which appears no other time in scripture (Hades is used). I believe he chose Tartarus for his angels in chains so that we, knowing the root story of that word, would realize that the imprisoned angels of whom he speaks are not demons but fallen angels of another kind, a kind hinted at in the first book of Moses. They are the angels who became men that they might love women. And in becoming men, they became mortal and died. And their souls were sent to Tartarus, not Hades, for they were not men, nor were they demons anymore, allowed to roam freely on the earth until they are thrown into Abaddon, the eternal fire.
“It is important to continue your studies in Greek, my sons. Treasures await in scripture. Treasures in single words.
“Doubtless all such angels have died and are gone, but who knows, perhaps some live on. What I do believe is that the adversary roams to and fro upon the earth ‘like a roaring lion,’ and I believe he would stand in our way, if he could, to protect his minions—this Wodin and his false pantheon. Three days hence will tell. We must pray with all diligence till then and always after.
Copyright 2009 by Charlie Starr