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by Wayne Blank
Simon The Sorcerer
"Philip went down to a city of Samaria, and proclaimed to them the Christ. And the multitudes with one accord gave heed to what was said by Philip, when they heard him and saw the signs which he did. For unclean spirits came out of many who were possessed, crying with a loud voice; and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. So there was much joy in that city."
Who Was Simon Magus?
The Bible record of Simon Magus ends after the verses quoted above, however there are other direct references to him in existence, including that by Justin Martyr, a prominent Christian writer and historian who lived in the early second century, just after the close of the New Testament period. In his Apology, chapter 26 (a brief except is shown below), Justin wrote that Simon Magus went to Rome during the reign of Emperor Claudius where he, being the skilled deceiver that he was, corrupted and became the popular leader of a large portion of the true Christians (many of whom had earlier been personally converted by the apostles, including Paul and Peter, to whom the Epistle to the Romans was written) in the city.
Among Simon Magus' teachings, which did not reject Christianity, but rather grossly perverted much of it to his own liking (despite what they were doing, the deceived and misled people of Simon's church called themselves, and apparently sincerely believed themselves to be, Christians, as they still do - there are over a billion Roman Catholics in the world; however the day is coming when they, in great numbers, are going to discover how badly they've been deceived and they're going to rise up and free their minds and bodies from that Satanic deception, as this author did as an individual over 30 years ago thanks to a certain preacher in Pasadena, California whose "trademark" challenge was "Don't believe me, believe your Bible!" Daily Bible Study would not exist today if not for Herbert W. Armstrong, a very (as I later learned) imperfect, sometimes wrong (just like every other human), at times foolish, egotistical, arrogant, perverted sinner, and true man of God when it came to overall Biblical understanding - I can almost hear the cheers, and the boos, to that one), was that their human leader was in place of God and promoted the use of statues for worship. According to Justin:
"There was a Samaritan, Simon, a native of the village called Gitto, who in the reign of Claudius Caesar, and in your royal city of Rome, did mighty acts of magic, by virtue of the art of the devils operating in him. He was considered a god, and as a god was honoured by you with a statue, which statue was erected on the river Tiber, between the two bridges, and bore this inscription, in the language of Rome."
Fact Finder: Does the church that Simon the Sorcerer founded have any Biblical basis for their idea of "purgatory"?