Swedish heavy metal outfit Ghost are headed to Midland, Texas, and the community isn’t too pleased. On Friday, Midlanders joined together to pray and “plead the blood of Christ” in light of the Satanic band’s arrival. They’re performing tonight at the Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center. Friday’s protest was led by local pastor Larry Long.
“We’re not here to protest. We’re just simply here to pray, to pray His protection, to plead the blood of Christ over our community,” Long told CBS7. “This kind of band will bring spiritual influences into this area. We’re concerned about it, because we believe the devil is real, just as we believe God is real.”
Long was also disappointed in the venue for approving of the show. “The fact that they describe themselves as a worship band for Satan, is, I think quite shocking. And I think most of our community would be surprised to learn that,” he continued. “They cover their faces with masks that look like devils in their concerts, and they are all about worshipping and brining glory to Satan. And it’s just not the thing I think most of Permian Basin would be happy to have in our community.”
There’s a song about… What’s it called? ‘Satan’s Hammer’? Something about a hammer. And it talks about the fact that the person singing the song is seeking a relationship with the devil. And if young people go to a concert like this and they think it’s all just good fun — kind of like Halloween, so to speak — and so, ‘This is all just good fun,’ and ‘Don’t make such a big deal out of it,’ I think if they’re singing along to those lyrics, who knows what in the world they’re opening their hearts and lives up to?
The main band leader goes by the name of Tobias; whether or not that’s his real name, who knows? And then the rest of ‘em go by ‘ghoulish horde’ or something like that. Of course, you see this kind of stuff and you say, ‘Well, how much of this…? Do they understand?’ I think that they understand all of it. I think that they are doing this intentionally, and I think they really do worship the devil, because I believe… as a Christian, as a biblical Christian, I believe the devil’s real. So I imagine maybe some people listening right now would say, ‘Oh, you guys are getting overblown with this,’ and those kinds of things. Well, you would only think that if you didn’t think the devil was real.
The performing arts center responded in a statement to CBS7: “Shock rock has been a part of the heavy metal landscape from the early days of Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper and Marilyn Manson. Each performer bringing to the stage their own version of a cruel world. GHOST, with their album’s No. 3 spot on the Billboard charts, is continuing in those metal bands’ footsteps.” Rock on, Wagner Noël. Hail Satan. Watch CBS7’s coverage of the gathering below.