Posted in: Satanism and SRA

The Cornerstone series on Mike Warnke

an investigation into his testimony, with feedback and rebuttal

Cornerstone magazine, vol. 21, issue 98 (1992)

Cornerstone magazine, vol. 21, issue 99 (1992)

  • Warnke Update (news and recent developments)
  • Warnke Ministries statement (July 15, 1992)
  • Tim Landis’ response to Warnke (July 16, 1992)
  • How Do I Deal With the Pain? (editorial)
  • Letters to the Editor (the readers react!)

Responses from Warnke Ministries and supporters

Media coverage and editorials

Read what the Columbia Journalism Review had to say about the men who researched this story.

Read a review of Selling Satan published by the Skeptical Inquirer.

In 1992, Cornerstone magazine released a cover story (and the longest article in its history) entitled “Selling Satan: The Tragic History of Mike Warnke,” a 24,000-word exposé of Mike Warnke, an alleged former Satanic high priest and now a popular Christian comedian. Warnke’s ministry spanned nearly 20 years. Our article was a take-off on Warnke’s first book, The Satan Seller (Logos Publishing, 1972) in which Warnke claimed to have led over 1,500 other Satanists near San Bernardino, California.

“Selling Satan” demonstrated that not only was Warnke’s testimony fraudulent, but that Warnke raised money for projects that never materialized, was involved in serious immorality while in public ministy, and that several figures in the contemporary Christian music industry knew about the situation but failed to take biblical steps to resolve it.

Cornerstone took some flak from the Christian community for exposing a popular Christian speaker whose testimony (however false) had been used to bring a number of people to Christ.

Here, we present our articles, the letters and our follow-up reporting on this story, the replies from Mike Warnke and his supporters, and the eventual fallout in the public media. “Selling Satan” eventually received a first-place award for investigative reporting from the Evangelical Press Association. A book-length treatment of the Warnke story and its aftermath is Selling Satan: The Evangelical Media & the Mike Warnke Story, available from Cornerstone Press.

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