This story was originally published by the WND News Center.
Satan is hot.
Not necessary as in hot because hell is flaming. Not because he's so successful.
It's just because he's a very popular component in many ways in pop culture right now.
Newsweek reports that in 2021 Pew Research said 62% of American adults believe in hell, up from 58% a few years earlier.
Now, the report said, "The devil is front and center in movies, TV shows, podcasts, and even children's books."
And there are Satan After School Clubs in select schools.
There's a podcast, "The Exorcist Files," as well as movies, "Warrior Nun," "Devil in Ohio," "Lucifer" and more on Netflix.
Newsweek reported, "Not since 1973, when 'The Exorcist' was a cultural phenomenon on its way to becoming the first horror film to earn an Oscar nomination for Best Picture has Satan been such a popular topic. There's even a 'Children's Book of Demons;' sample passage: 'Summoning demons has never been so fun!' A used copy of the controversial book published in 2019 sells for $253 on Amazon.com."
Father Carlos Martins, of "The Exorcist Files," warns that more and more Americans "are opening the door for Satan to enter their lives," with exorcisms up and his podcast hitting a million downloads.
He explained while church and synagogue attendance has declined in recent years, many people are filling the void left by embracing "a rejection of received social customs and expected behavioral norms in favor of embracing 'me-first' pleasure, pursuing intense feelings and experiences."
Satan, as a figurehead, is another "shock" ceiling to be used in the movement.
The report also cited the work by Sam Smith and Kim Petras at the recent Grammies, when they "performed a hell-themed version of the song, 'Unholy,' with Smith dressed as the devil and Petras chained in a cage surrounded by flames, much to the chagrin of some Republican lawmakers."
Sen. Ted Cruz' response to that stunt was, "This... Is ... Evil."
Pastor Greg Locke of Global Vision Bible Church in Tennessee expressed his opinion: "New-age, the occult, witches, warlocks, Satan — people are intrigued, and Hollywood feeds it to them."
His church has grown from 300 to 3,000 since about the time the pandemic hit.
"Hollywood is pushing demonic activity; we're pushing freedom from demonic activity," Locke said in an interview. "We believe in demonic affliction and oppression. Not everything is a demon, but there's a reason some people can't get over an addiction or depression. You can't medicate your way out of spiritual heaviness. You cast it out."
"Flat-out crazy" is how Chuck Konzelman, who worked on "Nefarious" described being curious about demons.
He explained, regarding Ouija boards, "When you pick one up, you're saying 'yes-yes' to a willing spiritual possession. Your intention is almost certainly temporary, but demons play for keeps."
And beyond movies and books, "there is The Satanic Temple, which boasts of being the only religious organization recognized as a church by the IRS and the Federal Court System," the report said.