By Hook Or By Crook

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You don’t have to be in Kansas anymore for bad stuff to happen. Just ask Dorothy.

16 Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. 17 This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” 18 And this she did for many days.

But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour. 19 But when her masters saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to the authorities.

We all develop methods of surviving in a harsh world.  Divination should not be one of them, and I am not just speaking to Christians.  As you can see from the above paragraph, divination comes only by one source and that is Satanic.  You might have great powers but they are not yours and any power of this sort is usually got by illegal means (God’s law not man’s).  Satan’s power was given to him by God but he fell and now uses that power to attempt to destroy the church.  The whole world might be under the sway of the evil one, but he does what he does in his own name, not God’s. Therefore, his authority is illegitimate, and so is anything he gives human beings.  It will not be blessed by God, the righteous One.

Astrology and tea-leaf reading aside, we all have means to ‘predict’ the future, but unless God gives us a prophetic word we are engaging in divination.  Divination is witchcraft which is rebellion which is sin.  Scripture does not get any clearer on this.  Divination can be described as the premeditated choice to seek out means to know the future which are empowered by demonic forces. It is the fleshly desire to know the future which opens the door to the demonic. I should just point out that praying and asking God for clarity on a situation is not divination.  He is the legitimate authority, and James tells us if we need wisdom He will give liberally to all men and without reproach.  That is a very important verse. It means God knows we need help to live our lives and will give it to us.  It’s depending on anything other than God which is the problem. However, the means by which we can engage in divination can be fuzzy especially if we are well-meaning.  Let me explain.

I grew up in an abusive household. Every one of my siblings has the same problems because we had one parent who was a narcissist and the other who was an enabler.  Some of us grew up more like our parents than others, but all of us developed habitually  crooked ways of coping.  When I became a Christian, I continued using these coping methods because I had not developed my relationship with Lord enough to learn that this was not only unacceptable to Him, but was also sinful.  Some things aren’t obvious as I said, other things we keep doing because we just don’t know how to stop.  In my case, I kept doing them because my need to feel safe and in control was more important than trusting God.

God is trustworthy, men are not, and sometimes women in particular tend to conflate the two.  We put our trust in men; our husbands, our pastors, other Christian leaders and speakers.  And it can be a snare and a downfall to our relationship with God.  If you put men in the place of God you will inevitably stumble, and in fact this is idol worship by another name.  So it is one thing to talk about trusting God, but being able to trust God alone is something else. I needed a revelation of the love of God and His trustworthiness.

I developed in my childhood the habit of predicting what would happen that day and finding ways of dealing with it.  I was bullied a lot at school because I was a weird little kid and didn’t know how to relate to other little kids. I knew how to relate to adults (pull forelock and act like a suck-up) but I didn’t know about peer groups.  Therefore, going to school was a scary prospect.  I spent most of the first half an hour in bed in the mornings working out ways to deal with the various kids who I knew were going to pick on me the moment I got to school.  Sometimes all I could tell myself was ‘at least I can have marmalade on my toast this morning’.  Marmalade on toast was my favourite breakfast.  I learned ways to comfort myself, and food was one of them.

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If Toto can make it out alive anything is possible…

As an adult this translated into mentally preparing myself for what I thought might have been coming the next day, or far into the future.  For the most part it didn’t work, but for most of my life, I figured if I knew how to imagine myself getting it right then I would be better at getting it right when it actually happened.  This, in my experience, disproves all of the ‘name it and claim it’ messages that psychologists and life coaches like Tony Robbins have worked on for years.  You do not create your own future.  If you did, then my whole life should have looked like a Hollywood movie.  I certainly was good at directing them in my head.  “They will say this, then I will say that.  Then they will do this and then I will do that, and it will all end thusly”.  It never did.  Inevitably, I forgot the script, or they just didn’t do what I thought they would.

I was trying to predict the future.  It was not entirely accurate.  OK, it was not accurate at all, but the fact that I was trying to work out what was going to happen based on what I knew of the situation was still prediction.

You might say, ‘but wait a minute didn’t you just define divination as using methods which are empowered by satanic forces?  Imagining what would happen is not satanic is it?”.  I know right?  It doesn’t come across as evil or wicked or engaging in witchcraft.  But wait…

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled. (2 Corinthians)

Paul is talking here about not warring in the flesh.  In Ephesians 6 he talks about the fact that we war against spiritual forces.

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,[c] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand

I might also add here my favouritest verse of all time Romans 12:1-2

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God

All of this tells me that our minds need to be transformed so that we can deal with the flesh and also the spiritual battle which comes against us.  If Satan is encouraging us to mentally prepare for the future by rehearsing events which may or may not happen then we are not walking in faith. Scripture tells us to take every thought captive.  It means every sinful thought.  It is impossible to take every thought captive per se. So spending hours (and I did) mentally rehearsing events, conversations and outcomes is not taking every thought captive to God.  If our minds need to be renewed its because our minds are the place where sin is conceived.  If we sin habitually through mentally trying to control what happens, which is witchcraft, then we need to repent and deal with life a different way, God’s way.

When you come from an abusive background, whether that is from a family of origin or from another source such as marrying a psychopath (and I say this with respect, the internet is full of testimonies from partners of deranged humans), or from being exposed long-term to abuse from pastors or bosses or others, the thing you want the most is to ensure that this NEVER happens again.  So you do what you need to do in order to avoid it. For many of us, it is controlling the outcome.  Of everything.

We PREDICT our futures, in order to PREPARE for any future abuse or pain and thereby PROTECT ourselves and stay safe.  It makes perfect sense when you are in there.  But living like this is walking in the flesh, it is NOT trusting in God, it is trusting in your own ability to prepare for the next onslaught even if there isn’t one.  You think you are doing yourself a favour, but all you are doing is setting yourself up for failure.  Nobody ever gets divination right every time.  You only have to fail half of the time in a situation like this and you make yourself crazy.  WHY, you ask yourself, did I not see that coming?  You end up getting more and more and more distressed which in turn gives you even more energy to try that much harder next time to prepare for the next crazy turn of events.

Let’s face it.  Life is unpredictable, it is getting even more unpredictable as the world turns.  Or not, I personally believe we live in a geocentric universe.  Finding that out actually changed my life, I am not kidding.  Have you ever seen or felt the earth spinning?  I won’t go on, that would be a whole blog post on its own.  Anyway, even realising that God made the earth first because of His great plans for us and His great love for His people and that He will also make a new heaven and earth for our future enjoyment didn’t stop me from trying to plot for my own success.

Look, it doesn’t matter why we do it.  You don’t have to have come from an abusive background.  Every human being wants to know the future.  It’s why we talk about time travel. The thought that this might actually be scientifically possible (it isn’t and will never be) gets us all excited.  Knowing the future is not the answer.  Preparing for possible difficulty pain or trauma is not the answer either. As anyone who has ever paid for insurance for years and then found out that the insurance company won’t pay up because the fine print said that this particular disaster wasn’t applicable finds out….you can’t cover every eventuality and the odds are that the thing you never even imagined is the thing that eventually happens.

Having said that, we still need to deal with that very human need for preparation and protection right?  Look at Noah.  He prepared as God told him to and was protected from God’s wrath.  God knows the end from the beginning and He will tell us what to do in every eventuality.  We do not need to run around as the rest of the world does as though we have no God, and as though God isn’t in control but expects us to somehow know what to do because we have intelligence.  I actually heard a very young pastor say that once.  He said where scripture doesn’t tell us what to do specifically, then we ‘have the freedom’ to do whatever seems to be good to us at the time because that is why God gave us brains.  Somebody needs to tell this young guy that stuff not specifically covered in scripture leaves out about 50% of the issues of modern life.  That is NOT the gospel.  We have been given the Holy Spirit who is our GUIDE, counselor, comforter and teacher and will lead us and help us as Jesus helped his disciples when He was on earth. Added to this, while scripture may not specifically address issues such as, say, birth control, scripture still gives us the markers for our spiritual and moral compass.  God loves children, children are a blessing, some people can’t have children, God heals barrenness etc.  You get where I am going with this.  I hope. The generalities are there even if the specifics are not.  God wants us to know what His will is for our lives (Romans 12:2) and therefore it is not up to us to determine our futures.

It’s when we act as though this is not the case, or simply forget that this is the case, that we end up getting ourselves tangled up in knots literally and figuratively.  If you are suffering constant headaches and anxiety or even panic attacks because your stress levels are through the roof,  you might consider that you may actually be trying to manipulate and control your life, and other people’s, for their own good of course.  This may well be a common problem for women, but it is NOT a godly response to life.  We walk by faith, NOT by hook or by crook.

Next post, I will talk about the antidote to this PREDICT, PREPARE and PROTECT problem.

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Is Donald Trump a Christian?

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“Though you untie the winds and let them fight against the churches..”

Macbeth to the ‘weird sisters’ (Macbeth Act 4 Scene 1)

So what do Macbeth and US President Donald Trump have in common?  Apparently witches hate both of them. Both kings, one like Saul who went to a coven of witches to find out his fate, the other who seems to have raised the ire of many witches who are apparently publicly asking other witches to gather and cast spells today against Trump to bring about his destruction. See this site for details.

I am not so much concerned about this broadly documented news item today as I am about the reaction of a number of Christian sites encouraging Christians to pray against the witches in order to protect Trump. I have no problem praying against spells and demonic attacks.  I am just concerned that these prayers are being prayed under a false assumption.

My concern is, is Trump actually a Christian, or is he just adhering to the Christian religion as most of his predecessors have done regardless of whether they actually act like a born-again believer or not.  I don’t care how many of these men have gone to church or claim to be believers, it is their actions which prove whether they are actual believers or not.

According to James Dobson of Focus on The Family, Trump has actually made a decision for Christ. Yet religionnews.com has reported as of June 25 last year that Trump has not personally spoken of a born-again experience or a personal relationship with Christ.

Trump recently accepted a relationship with Jesus Christ as his Savior, making him a “baby Christian,” Focus on the Family founder James Dobson said in an interview posted Friday (June 24) to Michael Anthony’s website, Godfactor. Dobson and Anthony, pastor of Grace Fellowship in York, Pa., spoke after the candidate’s meeting Tuesday in New York City with nearly 1,000 evangelicals.

“He did accept a relationship with Christ. I know the person who led him to Christ, and that’s fairly recent. … I believe he really made a commitment, but he’s a baby Christian,” Dobson said………

Dobson told Anthony that Trump “doesn’t know our language,” noting the candidate spoke during the meeting about “religion,” but not “faith” and “belief.” Other words the candidate never used, according to transcripts: “Jesus,” “pray,” “Christ” and “Bible.”

“You gotta cut him some slack. He didn’t grow up like we did,” Dobson said.

I am inclined to think more on the lines of this article by Michael Horton regarding Donald Trump’s theology.

Horton points out the following:

Let me suggest that the slender thread connecting Trump to the church is his occasional holiday appearances at Marble Collegiate Church, made famous by its pastor for 52 years, Norman Vincent Peale. Blending pop-psychology and spirituality, Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking (1952) remained on The New York Times bestsellers list for 186 weeks. Nicknamed “God’s Salesman,” Peale was criticized for trivializing Christianity. Reinhold Niebuhr said that he “corrupts the gospel,” and that he helps people “feel good, while they are evading the real issues of life.”

In the 1952 election, Peale declared presidential candidate Adlai Stevenson unfit because he was divorced. For his part, Stevenson quipped, “Speaking as a Christian, I find Paul appealing and Peale appalling.” During the Kennedy-Nixon campaign, which began his long relationship with the Nixon White House, Peale declared, “Faced with the election of a Catholic, our culture is at stake.”

Trump’s parents attended Peale’s sermons each week with the family in tow, and Donald often recalls the impact on his life. He and his sisters were married by Peale.

A more recent exponent of a feel-good gospel, Joel Osteen, has called Donald Trump “a friend of our ministry” and “a good man.” Trump has previously tweeted, “Being associated with Joel is my great honor—he’s a fantastic man!”

So when in recent months, it has appeared that Trump appeals to a sizable group of evangelicals, it may be less surprising than all the hoopla suggests. Liberty University president Jerry Falwell Jr. hailed him as “one of the greatest visionaries of our time” and a wonderful Christian brother “who reminds me of my dad.” The redoubtable Pat Robertson gushed in an interview with the empire-builder, “You inspire us all.” Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, who has introduced Trump at rallies, says, “We need a strong leader and a problem-solver, hence many Christians are open to a more secular candidate.”

Based on this evidence alone, ie the people who support him and the church he attends, that his understanding of biblical Christianity is going to be something less than biblical and a little more emerging church.

Having said that, Rachel Held Evans, an emerging blogger and author has this to say about Trump’s apparent conversion in a tweet dated 27 June 2016 –

“Oh, give me a break. Donald Trump hasn’t been born again. The Religious Right has simply sold out. James 2 folks.”

And another one a few hours later

“What must I do to inherit eternal life? Become the Republican nominee for president apparently.”

Now, I find myself agreeing with Rachel on a number of blog posts lately, and this isn’t a bad thing.  You can disagree with some people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time.

So if Trump is not a Christian should Christians be praying for him to be spared the ravages of the powerful spirits which these witches will be calling upon to bring down his presidency?  We are called to pray for our leaders, that is true.  But this is fairly specific.  I do believe that witches engage demonic entities and that their practice is cursed by God in scripture.

Assuming Trump is not saved is it right for us to pray against these spiteful curses from witches?  The Bible tells us to pray for leaders, but not necessarily in this way.

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.  (1 Timothy 2:1-15)

God obviously wants Trump to be saved, and he is kind of somewhat going in that direction despite the fact that he clearly has no understanding of the gospel.  He is reported as saying that he doesn’t have to ask God for forgiveness because he doesn’t need to, he doesn’t do bad things.  Scripture says that if we say we have no sin we call God a liar.  So Trump hasn’t been getting a true picture of the gospel.  Admittedly this was before his reputed conversion experience despite the fact that this was a second hand account from Dobson, not an actual confession from the lips of the president.  For my money, you would have to have Trump standing up in a press conference preaching the gospel of repentance and forgiveness, speaking about being washed in the blood of Jesus and talking about being saved by faith from his sins.  We haven’t had that, and frankly I doubt we will.

That being so, we still need to consider whether the reactions of many evangelical Christians about the so called witchcraft warfare going on today is worth paying attention to.

Here’s another verse to consider:

Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience. …  (Romans 13:1-14)

Witches by definition reject God and His Son Jesus Christ and are in rebellion against Him and also obviously the governing authorities.  Their curses and spells are nothing to a Christian who is walking in obedience to Jesus Christ, and loves the Lord with all of his heart and mind and soul and strength.  We can pray against them, and have done, and seen those attacks stopped. Satan is not going to go away though, so we will, as I said in my last post need to remember that ‘there is no demilitarized zone for Christians’.  For non-Christians, or men who think they are Christians when they are not, I would urge a consideration of the verses in Acts 19 where imposters such as the sons of Sceva tried to come against devils and were torn apart physically and ran away in terror.  Remember also Simon the magician who tried to buy the Holy Spirit and whom Paul cursed.  If Trump is trying to align himself with evangelical believers as many have suggested in order to buy votes and support then he is not going to automatically be spared demonic attacks.  Let’s face it, any president whether supported by the church or not is going to face demonic attacks, its just that this one is a little more public than most.

Frankly, I am more than a little skeptical that a bunch of witches who claim to have the ability to cast spells, and commune with Satan have to use facebook in order to gather their brothers and sisters in wickedness to unite against Uncle Sam. On commenter on this site wants to know ‘will it be televised’.  I mean, come on, this smacks more of media hype than anything else. When in doubt make a shocking announcement.  What bothers me is that there are a fair number of my brothers and sisters in Christ who are using a little less discernment than they should be using in this matter.  Why are we being emotionally manipulated by the media?  Come on, that is exactly what they want, and this attack would be against us as well.

I have no doubt that evil in this present day is coming out loud and proud, witches, warlocks, Satanists and the rest will probably be having their own occult pride march down your main street in a couple of years.  There are enough millennial generation still reading the Potter books and watching the movies now to make your head spin (excuse the pun) and many of them are Christians.  So let’s not get too excited about this.  Far more important that we pay attention to our own spiritual walk and make sure that those in our families and our churches are not being drawn away by occult practices, games, movies and tv shows.

I think Americans will still pray for Trump and there is nothing but good in that. I just believe we need to hold our ground and not be swayed by media releases or even a bunch of weird sisters who want to make a name for themselves as the people who brought down Trump.  When you think about it this is what they are really vying for, publicity, not truth.

We can pray against curses and demonic attacks for sure, but I believe the only genuine protection we can have is if we are born again, and since Donald Trump, is not, in my opinion genuinely born again since I have not seen or heard this from his own lips, then I don’t think he is going to be any more protected from evil than any other unsaved leader.

But as I said, it won’t hurt him for Christians to pray against these attacks, just please my friends don’t do it in fear or anguish and begin worrying that Trump will be killed or attacked in some way.  God is still in control, and He is greater than any concerted efforts by a bunch of weird sisters and their satan worshipping buddies.

“With Him are wisdom and strength,
He has counsel and understanding.
14 If He breaks a thing down, it cannot be rebuilt;
If He imprisons a man, there can be no release.
15 If He withholds the waters, they dry up;
If He sends them out, they overwhelm the earth.
16 With Him are strength and prudence.
The deceived and the deceiver are His.
17 He leads counselors away plundered,
And makes fools of the judges.
18 He loosens the bonds of kings,
And binds their waist with a belt.
19 He leads princesb]”>[b] away plundered,
And overthrows the mighty.
20 He deprives the trusted ones of speech,
And takes away the discernment of the elders.
21 He pours contempt on princes,
And disarms the mighty.
22 He uncovers deep things out of darkness,
And brings the shadow of death to light.
23 He makes nations great, and destroys them;
He enlarges nations, and guides them.
24 He takes away the understandingc]”>[c] of the chiefs of the people of the earth,
And makes them wander in a pathless wilderness.
25 They grope in the dark without light,
And He makes them stagger like a drunken man.

Job 12:13-25

 

Supermoon Monday -In the Valley of Aijalon

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12 Then Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel:

“Sun, stand still over Gibeon;
And Moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.”
13 So the sun stood still,
And the moon stopped,
Till the people had revenge
Upon their enemies.

Joshua 10:12-13 (NKJV)

I want to talk about spiritual warfare in this post.  I thought it timely to discuss this on the occasion of the first super moon since 1948.  Especially since that is the same year that the modern nation of Israel was formed!  We are in the last days friends!  It is also interesting that the above quote from Joshua talks about the battle of the Israelites against the King of Jerusalem and his four allies.  This was another stage in the war against the inhabitants of the land which God promised to give His people.  It is also symbolic of our battle against the powers of darkness who come against us in our walk with the Lord. The Lord has the power to make the moon, symbol of occult power, stand still as His people obey His voice, and go into the battle with the Lord going before, and also standing as our rear guard!  Hallelujah!

A super moon is when the moon is closer to the earth in its orbit than at other times, which is why it appears slightly larger.  For the flat earthers out there, peace to you, I wonder how this phenomenon is explained?  We are not  flat earthers but we are curious and do believe we are a geocentric universe, because the possibility of the earth’s rotation has been continually disproved by various and numerous experiments over time.  But that is another post.

Full moons have traditionally been associated with times of occult and paranormal and generally bizarre activity.  Some sources say that nothing out of the ordinary happens on full moons and the urban myths that hospitals and police stations get more business on these times of the month are simply that, urban myths.  My own experiences would suggest the opposite.  If you are a Christian then you are, by definition, a believer in the ‘supernatural’ and recognise that we have a supernatural enemy and we are engaged in spiritual warfare.  So, whether the moon affects others it seems that those who practice pagan or witchcraft rituals are definitely more active during the ‘waxing gibbous’ of the lesser light and they definitely exercise some power as they act in accordance with their gods who cause all kinds of mayhem.

We moved into the house we are in about a year ago, and we have had continual paranormal and bizarre activity, some of it has been quite distressing .  I wanted to focus on our need to stand against principalities and powers and not flesh and blood.  It is very tempting to assume only natural cause and effect in the situations you find yourself.  However, Paul tells us this is not true.

Paul’s famous Ephesians 6 declaration has helped and encouraged Christians for centuries.

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints

 Around April of this year we were doing spiritual battle against a particular protagonist on an internet forum.  This forum is a gathering of people who left the cult we were trapped in for 15 years.  There was one visitor to the forum who is still in the cult, and occasionally raises his head to attack, defy and question and criticise these people. His last attack was so outrageous and in fact rude that we felt we could no longer leave him unchallenged. The members of the forum have made the mistake of thinking that because a member of the cult  is on the forum, he must be wanting to know the truth and have been accepting and courteous to the unfortunate point of assuming he is a safe and harmless entity. I am afraid this isn’t so.  He is simply there to attack and destroy, because he is being motivated by the accuser of the brethren, and also he is in a cult, therefore he is cursed.  I know this sounds harsh, but Paul declares that anyone who preaches a false gospel is cursed (Galatians 1) and he points it out twice and with vehemence.  If you are in any doubt, also read Peter’s second letter, second chapter and he will tell you what he thinks of false teachers and their judgement.  Another good passage if anyone is in doubt about cult leaders and, unfortunately, their followers, is John’s second letter wherein he declares that fellowshipping with false teachers means that you are partaking in their evil deeds.

Anyway, this visitor to the forum has been there for years and we have just ignored him, and at the same time marvelled at the fact that people have just welcomed and in some cases praised this demon for having the courage to come to the forum.  There is a serious lack of discernment here, but that is not surprising.  You have to have come out from under the curse yourself in order to see it.  And if you are not aware you are cursed for having both supported, and agreed with false teachers and in most cases propagated those teachings in your own household., then you will end up walking in circles and not understand why.  We were under such a curse for years after we left the cult and when we recognised it, realised what God saw in us, and repented, our lives changed markedly!  Praise God for his mercy and goodness to us!  Our lives have not been the same since.  One of those changes has been our ability to recognise, discern and fight against spiritual forces who have harassed us for  years, and not only that but worked through the people around us.

So, in the power of the Spirit, we came against this cult member who was harassing the forum.  We spoke a very strong word of rebuke and told him to leave.  He tried to come back as somebody else and had a bizarre sock-puppet conversation with himself, and we exposed this and rebuked him one more time.  Finally he left and has not been seen since.  We were not left to enjoy our victory however.

The next day, I was walking the dog around our neighbourhood, and came across a lady up the road from us walking her dogs.  These dogs have gotten out of their house once before and attacked a woman walking her own dog down our street.  The dogs went berserk, there was much screaming and distress, and neighbours helped her, but the dogs ran off.  It was a fairly brief episode.  However, this particular day, the lady walking the dogs had them on a leash.  I recognised the dogs (two bull terriers) a way up the street and stopped to avoid them.  As soon as the dogs saw my dog (a medium sized Labrador cross), they managed to slip their leashes (which were clearly not sufficient to restrain them)  and in a chilling and nightmarish almost slo-mo few seconds one of them had targeted and moved in to latch onto my poor harmless puppy dog. She is a gentle non-aggressive and eager to please animal just minding her own business. These deranged creatures just went for her with no provocation.  It is in fact typical of the way demons work.  You have to be on  your guard continually, as one Christian put it ‘there is no demilitarised zone’ in spiritual warfare.  Demons will attack you, especially when you don’t expect it, so we have to be continually armed.  It is why Paul tells us to put on the armour of God.  It is our everyday clothing, not just for special occasions. We must be always prepared and ready as good soldiers to fight the good fight.

Poor ruby was screaming and yelping, and I was totally terrified.  I have never before felt so helpless and at the same time engulfed in fear.  It truly was a Jobian ‘the thing I feared has come upon me’ event.  In fact, I read an account of another  similar dog attack on the internet after this happened.  It was recounted by a former officer in the British army who had done service in Iraq and Afghanistan.  . He went through exactly the same circumstances of walking his little dog down a beach and encountering these two bull terriers off leash and just running at his dog simply because they wanted to. He said it was the most terrifying thing he had experienced, and he had been in battle AND been kidnapped by rebels at one point, so that is really saying something. It was an encouragement to me anyway, especially since our vet downplayed the whole event as ‘doggies having a bit of an argument’.

I am afraid to say that my first response was not to cry out to the Lord, but to yell at the woman who had lost control of the dogs.  I called her stupid and asked what she thought she was doing.  Not exactly a controlled and spirit-filled response.  A few neighbours came out to help.  There were four of us at one point, eye gouging, hitting, kicking, and doing everything we could to get this dog off.  I was on the ground at one point, believing I would be next to be attacked and felt totally depleted of strength, I have never experienced this before. Perhaps it was the adrenalin, but I have always heard that in these kinds of circumstances adrenalin usually gives you strength so that you CAN fight off a rabid dog. I believe with my whole heart that in fact, this was a spiritual attack, as I will prove. 

As I said, there were four adults trying to get this dog off Ruby’s neck.  Four adults, two of whom were men, and one of those guys was a really big heavy guy.  How is it that four adults in a prolonged attack against one small, but admittedly strong, dog couldn’t prevail. In the previous dog attack they were able to do it no problem.  In the soldier’s account, he managed to get one bull terrier off his dog with his bare hands, albeit requiring stitches afterwards to a large gash in his fingers, and his wife was actually able to get the other dog off.  So what gives that four fully grown humans couldn’t remove this dog.  It seemed to take ages, but in reality it was probably about ten minutes of hitting kicking and screaming. Then the breakthrough actually came from a totally different, but God-centred, direction.

Finallly, I heard the Holy Spirit say very clearly and in a commanding voice (not audibly), cast the demons out!   I have never prayed against demons in a dog.  In my own logical mind at the time I thought it was a bizarre thing to do and in fact I am ashamed to say that I was more concerned about the neighbour’s opinion of me than I was about obeying the Lord. However, I finally realised (this all took only a few seconds mind you) that I had no other choice, and since I do believe demons are real, and that demons can inhabit animals (Gadarene swine), I spoke up.  ‘In Jesus name, I command  you demons to come out of this dog’ I said.

Anyway, after a delay of a couple of seconds (during which time I figured, I am done for now, they are really going to think I am insane), the dog suddenly let go.  But here’s the thing, it slunk off as though I was its master telling it off!  I have lived with dogs my whole life and this dog knew it had met a stronger force. HA!  Take that demon!

The dog’s mate which had been skulking around while we were trying to get the attacking dog off saw its opportunity and then came in for another attack and latched on to Ruby’s leg.  This time however, one of the men managed to grab it and get it off fairly quickly.

I took the opportunity to convey Ruby, who was actually able to walk a little bit, to my house which was just across the road from this.  I told the lady who owned the dogs that I would be sending her the vet bill thinking that they would probably not pay it, but the Lord was with us.  The bill was around $800.00 and later that night Steve and Nick went to front the dog owners with the bill . Nick told me later that they were very apologetic, very subdued in fact, almost fearful.  They paid us the vet bill in cash in front of Steve and Nick via the internet.  We couldn’t believe they actually admitted fault and did the right thing.  We have seen so many people in these kinds of situations just baulk and try and claim it wasn’t their fault.  We believe God was fighting for us in this situation as well. The demons had been vanquished and we had no more trouble from them.  Ruby was as good as gold after about six weeks.

I am convinced that this whole attack both human and canine was the result of the fact that we stood up against the demons in the cult and rebuked them.  Spiritual forces are linked, they are not omniscient, but they clearly communicate with one another and they do what they do without hindrance from time, space or any other temporal force which limits us human beings. Therefore, an internet forum which exists out there somewhere and is able to link people from all the cities in this country is not a limitation to the demonic forces which control the human beings who are part of that cult.

Therefore, being attacked in Brisbane a matter of hours after we stood against a demon which may well have inhabited a person in Brisbane or Melbourne or Sydney or anywhere else is an easy matter for spiritual forces.

As I said, the house we rented a year ago is some kind of a spiritual gateway.  We prayed against any demonic influence when we moved in, anointed the house and property with oil and have been praying all year against spiritual forces of wickedness in high places. In some instances God gave us a name of a demon to pray against.  The neighbour next door is/was married to a particularly nasty and abusive man who was making our lives very difficult.  He was a bully and a drunk and when he was drunk I swear he looked for all the world like he was literally possessed, his eyes would roll back in his head and he would say the most bizarre things.  Worse, he had a demonic smirk which totally creeped us out.  So God gave us the name of the demon controlling him, we prayed against it and literally less than 24 hours later he was gone.  His wife kicked him out, and we have never seen him again.

God has not given us a spirit of fear, but He has given us His Holy Spirit and we have the power of God within us, to stand against and speak with authority against those who would, without realising it, make our lives difficult.  We are new to all of this.  We have in theory always believed in the supernatural, but have had little to do with it.  In Steve’s early life, he had experience of preaching and seeing the blind see and lame walk.  When we joined the cult however, all that left.  Then after leaving the cult it took years for us to recover, and then took more years for God to bring us to a place where He could trust us to begin to walk in the Spirit and walk in the ministry God has given us.  We are seeing healings, deliverance, the Spirit filling and blessing those around us.  It is truly an amazing thing, and we have found this all out for ourselves, testing the word of God, believing what we read, what God shows us, obeying His word, and thanking and praising God for His faithfulness in our everyday lives.

We have had failures, or lost battles if you like.  Our beloved cat was ill on one occasion and we prayed against the demonic forces coming against him.  He began to recover to the point of eating food, walking around, actually looking like he was getting much better to the point that we left him alone at night after four weeks of sitting with him and ensuring he was comfortable.  Finally one night, the night of a full moon, he died.  It was a real shock for our daughter Lucy who had done the majority of the nursing.  Now somebody will say he was a 12 year old cat and he was probably going to die anyway.  I say balderdash.  His sister is in perfect health and shows no signs of slowing down. We had seen the Holy Spirit give us wisdom and discernment in so many other issues and seen immediate results.  In fact our cat’s death had interesting repurcussions.  It showed us that if we are not walking fully in the will of God and leaving doors open through sin and disobedience for the enemy to come in like a flood and attack us. All things work together for good and the Lord allows what He sees fit to allow in order to teach us how to walk in the Spirit, and to learn what we need to learn for future and more important battles.

I don’t have all the answers, I do know it was no coincidence we were in a house where we have seen more supernatural activity and downright attacks than anywhere else in our life.  The neighbourhood is rife with strange things going on, we live on a crossroad, the neighbours next door are definitely demonically controlled, and the units on the other side contain some seriously demented and strange human beings.  We are seeing victory in so many different things.  

I just want to say one more thing about spiritual warfare. When the Isarelites led by Jehosophat came against a vast army which they admitted they could not defeat on their own, they cried out to God and he said those famous words ‘the battle is not yours but God’s’, they then set singers and worshippers at the front of the army and saw the defeat of their enemy.  Much has been made of this event, and it is certainly true that God dwells in the praises of His people.  This action was not actually a direction from God, but God obviously gave Jehosophat wisdom and he believed that they should honour God even in warfare. WHo would have thought praise was the answer.  But then who would have thought shouting would bring down the walls of Jericho.  In fact neither of these things in themselves are going to make much difference.  It is the Lord who reigns and fights for His people as long as we give Him the glory, obey His word and remain in the Spirit and don’t try and go ahead of Him.  I have found for myself that in our neighbourhood, playing praise music in our house makes a HUGE difference to the environment.  We get far less ambient noise from other people’s radios or sound systems.  In fact, God showed me that all music is worship of some kind.  People are either knowingly or unknowingly praising their own gods with their music.  All music was made by God and of course Lucifer was the prime worship leader as even his body (if you can call it that) was a musical instrument.  Lucifer when he fell took music with him and as Prince of the Power of the Air he still controls music.  Therefore, when we use our music to praise, honour and worship our God who is Holy, Righteous and Perfect, we are proclaiming both the power of God, and also the presence of God who dwells in the praises of His people.  We can’t lose.  We are encouraged and uplifted and the demonic forces are defeated.

Hallelujah and Hallelujah.

I can’t post the URL of this video but I will attempt to add the address, but it is a Hosannah DVD on songs of spiritual warfare.  Hope this encourages others today, it has certainly been a blessing to us.

Many Blessings,

Anita

 

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Merry Pagan Ritual

 

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I have always found it amusing that people who live in the southern hemisphere of this planet still celebrate christmas as though they were living in the northern hemisphere.    I had thought it strange, as a child, that so many countries have ignored the fact that they have christmas in summer and continued to prepare and decorate for and celebrate christmas as though they were in the middle of winter. Not just that, but christmas cards in Australia often depicted Santa Claus, fir trees, reindeer, yule logs and other acoutrements of this time of year, none of which had anything to do whatsoever with our culture, climate or traditions as a country.  Sure, we were made up for the most part of European migrants, at least for the first two hundred years, but now we are a mixture of Asian, Middle Eastern and other countries which either don’t celebrate christmas or are not part of the European religious or cultural traditions.  Yet, many of these people still think of christmas in terms of the traditional customs and follow along merrily because it is so much fun.

I was born in England and emigrated to Queensland around the age of four.  As a child I looked at the whole winter christmas thing as people with European traditions  just missing their old way of celebrating christmas in Europe or England.  However, after having done some research into the origins of this holiday, I realise that there is much more to this than just wistful memories of ‘the old country’.  There is a reason why those who have christmas in summer pretend that they are having christmas in winter. The traditions are die hard not just because they relate to seasonal changes, but because they are hard-wired into us as human beings.  If we are not celebrating the new life that Jesus Christ has given us, we will be looking to pagan deities to bring us new life through food, wine and ‘gifts’. We think we are celebrating family and the ‘joy of giving’ but nothing could be further from the truth.  If this were the case, we would be having christmas all year round.  Why only once a year? Who wrote that rule?  No, there is something much more central to our humanity that is dominating our thinking with regards to these festivities, and it doesn’t just occur at christmas, it also comes to a lesser extent at easter and at other festivals and ‘holy’ days.

There are a great many worthy websites discussing the pagan origins of this holiday and I won’t be able to do justice to them all, but I will include a list of some of them at the end of this post for those who wish to investigate further, but I will sum up what I know of this most interesting phenomenon.

The worship of the idols or gods has been in existence for most of human history.  The sun god in these religions was either the head of the pantheon or one of the most important gods. However, the worship of any of these gods, be they Egyptian, Greek, Roman Scandanavian or any other culture is the worship of spirits or fallen angels. So whether the sun god is  Ra, in Egypt or Baal in Babylon or Saturn in  Rome they are all personifications of wicked spirits.  It is the reason God condemned all idol worship in Israel. These were not just stone or wood figures they were images of actual entities.

The traditions of christmas seem to centre around the rituals associated with the mid-winter solstice, or the lowest point of the sun’s progression in the earth’s skys at which point winter was the coldest and darkest. Many pagan religions have their most important and solemn celebrations or holy days at this point and included invocations of and even human sacrifices to their sun gods.  Most of these traditions are the basis for christmas celebrations.  The reason why they have morphed into ‘christmas’ or ‘Christ Mass’ celebrations is because of the attempt at ancient ecumenism by the emperor Constantine in the fourth century AD.  Constantine was the first Roman Emperor to institue an official state religion.  Historically he was considered to have become a Christian because he saw a vision in the sky telling him that ‘by this sign you will conquer’, the sign being the cross.  I have no doubt he saw a vision and heard a voice, but the ‘christian’ cross is simply a version of pagan symbols which had been around for centures before that and Satan is proficient at convincing people they have seen or heard from God rather than from his greatest enemy .  This proves nothing more than that Constantine was deeply deceived and since he was already a worshipper of Baal, he simply managed to conflate pagan and ‘christian’ elements into a new religion which was then forced upon the people of the Roman empire.  Many of this new religion’s priests were paid to become so.  In fact, it was a brilliant move. Constantine instituted a huge world-wide religion which was to become known officially as the christian ‘church’ when it has never was and will never be anything but pagan.  Genuine christians were persecuted and have been by the Catholic Church its entire history.  Also, every iteration of the Catholic church from Luther onwards had their own versions of the Spanish Inquisition and have murdered and persecuted genuine bible believers. The Catholic/Constantinian church may well use the bible as a reference for a lot of its theology and have convinced the world that it represents Christ’s body on earth, but it does not and can never do so.

In fact, the religion of Constantine (shall we call it Constantinism?) is the purveyor of everything ‘christmas’ over the last two thousand years.  We do not celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ as he was not born in mid-winter, Santa Claus, elves, magical flying reindeer or anything else ‘magical’ have nothing to do with God and I think you will find that any witchcraft or magic of any description is pronounced cursed in scripture.  End of Story.

But back to the winter celebrations.  In all of the ancient pagan religions, there was a focus on the birth and death of the sun god, either in the northern hemisphere with the onset of winter and the rebirth of spring, or the recognition that the sun sets (dies) at night and is reborn in the morning.   In places like Scandanavia where there is very little light for most of winter/autumn, there were various practices which accompanied their mid-winter solstice celebrations, but all of it focused on the death of their sun god at the lowest point of the sun’s journey, the winter solstice and its rebirth at the beginning of spring

These pagan religions had a great many customs which were comparable to each other during their celebrations of their sun gods.  The christmas tree, which we take to be Germanic in origin is actually a common theme, although it wouldn’t of course be called the christmas tree.  Trees, whether they be firs or palms were used in many of the ancient religions to celebrate their holy days, and often they were decorated with food or bright objects.  Equally, holly, ivy and other green foilage was used to decorate and denote religious festivals. In fact, in Jeremiah 10:2-4, the christmas tree is mentioned specifically.

Hear ye the word which the Lord speaketh unto you, O house of Israel:

Thus saith the Lord, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them.

For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.

They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.

They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good.

Santa Claus is not a christian saint either.  There have been many myths and legends associated with mid-winter solstice and spirits or mystical figures bringing luck or gifts. There is also the associated practice of the offering or some kind of ceremonial activity which will ‘bring back the sun’ or ask the gods to bless them in the coming spring.  These are not simply religious activities being carried out by simplistic and superstitious people who worship what they do not know.  The origin of all false worship, that which does not honour God the Father and Christ His Son is the worship of Satan.

It is common for children’s stories to be told during the christmas festival. I think here in particular of C.S. Lewis’ “Chronicles of Narnia”. In the first of these books “The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe” many pagan myths and characters were introduced to children.  I remember well my own obsession with these books as a child and this continued with the movies which came out over a decade ago.  It wasn’t until I had a good hard look at those stories and understood that there was no way they could be stories about Jesus, as I had been told, or that they could in any way be compared to the gospel of Jesus Christ that I understood the pull that they had on me and on many other people.

The stories of the Pevensie children began in England in Summer, ironically, but they entered a land which was bedecked in endless winter due to a curse.  Father Christmas is an important figure in the first story as the characters in the story often tell the reader that it was ‘always winter but never Christmas’ and that this was a terrible thing.  In fact, it would have been terrible for human beings if there was never a mid-winter solstice because it would mean that there would never be the return of the sun. In fact, the whole of this book is about sun worship, not Christ worship.  The central figure, a Lion (who apparently made the world of Narnia and hints that he is known by another name in ‘our world’) dies by the knife of a witch in a very pagan sacrifice and is renewed with the rising of the sun the next day and rises to bring an end to her reign and kills the witch.  When Aslan the lion returns to Narnia, heralded by the entrance into Narnia of ‘two sons of Adam and daughters of Eve’, Father Christmas also enters and explains that before this, ‘she had kept me out’ meaning the witches powers were so great he was not able to come and do what he was supposed to do.

It is interesting that Lewis has also conflated biblical and pagan theology and that so many christians have considered the Narnia stories, all seven of them, to be almost parables of the gospel. I find it incredibly interesting that both Lewis’ and J.K. Rowling’s books were a series of seven and were intent on introducing pagan and magical characters to children under the guise of what is ostensibly fairy tales. As a side note, both Rowling and Lewis used initials instead of their first names.  I wonder how many more similarities there are here.

Both Lewis and his friend J.R.R. Tolkien (another afficianado of initials?) were members of a writers group called The Inklings which had strong Catholic influence.  Tolkien’s books were edited by a Jesuit priest friend of his and his son becamea Jesuit priest. It is no surprise that the Jesuits also hold the original manuscripts of Tolkien’s writings. There is more than just a passing coincidence here.  Constantine, Tolkien and Lewis were all involved, whether consciously or not, in the same pursuit; the mixture of mythology and theology in order to continue the practice of one and water down the effect of the other.

Lewis’ Narnia stories are saturated from beginning to end with pagan and mythical references and characters.  There is never any immediate reference to the God of the Bible, or to Jesus His Son, just insinuations.  If you want to make insinuations into references to God then you might as well take all of the pagan religions’ stories of the birth of the son of the gods and goddesses who rule the ancient pantheons and compare them to what we know of Jesus and the Father, and in fact many have done so, mocking our faith in the one true and living God in the process.

Our version of ‘christmas’ is simply the conflation of all of the pagan ceremonies and festivities which have been continuing for millenia and the Catholic mystical religion which originated in Rome.  The Roman Emperor Constantine who instigated the official Roman Catholic Church in the fourth century AD did not just officially ‘become a Christian’.  In fact, he simply succeeded in joining those he couldn’t beat by creating a homogenised religion which pleased both the pagans and those christians at the time who had been paid to join the official Roman church.  What we now know as ‘christian’ was never in fact christian at all, it has simply become a ‘christian tradition’ due to the unquestioning continuation of a practices that are neither biblical nor godly.

Many christians who have not yet had their minds renewed in this area will argue that anything which calls us to centre worship on God is a good thing and surely we can use this celebration to witness to people.  However which ‘god’ are we worshipping here?  Jesus was NOT born on December 25, Tammuz, the promised son of Baal was.  So, instead, we focus on an idol, the baby sleeping in a manger.  But Jesus is no longer a baby, He is seated at God’s right hand in heaven.  Birthdays themselves are actually not biblical celebrations either so you can’t use that excuse. You can’t get away from it.  This is not Jesus we are talking about.  Sure, we can interject the story of the birth of Jesus here, but it makes absolutely NO sense to be doing it on the same day that pagans and various cultures have worshipped their gods.  It is more than offensive to me that we would take days dedicated to demons and say ‘lets worship Jesus on this day instead’.  We worship Jesus every day, and His death on the cross and His resurrection.  We do not focus on the eternal baby as the Catholics do, making Mary the co-redemptrix of the human race which in fact is simply a reiteration of pagan mythology.  There is always a goddess who reigns with a god and has an eternal child seated in her lap.  In Catholic theoogy, the ‘queen of heaven’ is Mary.  In Scripture, the ‘Queen of Heaven’ is a demon.  We are not to mix light and dark, good and bad, and say ‘its all in a good cause’.  We have no right to do what God has specifically told us not to do.  That which is an abhomination, idol worship, is to be thoroughly cast out of our homes and lives.  God does not bless that which is unclean and can never do so.

It is my belief that we are perpetuating a lie which began with the worship of fallen angels.  All idol worship, or the worship of gods from ancient pantheons is the worship of Satan. In fact, christmas is a great big con and most Christians are part of it simply because they do not know the facts, do not want to know the facts, or consider the facts to be irrelevant.  I believe it won’t be until we understand that we are to be separate from this world and its infatuation with eveything that is evil that we will truly understand the nature of this festival.

If we are really so focused on food and fellowship, then lets focus on communion and breaking bread together with other believers over the Lord’s sacrifice on our behalf.  He is truly the reason for any celebration, and His gifts, the Holy Spirit and everything He brings to our lives are more powerful, more beneficial and more comforting than any shop-bought or even hand-made gifts that we could ever receive from our loved ones.

Let’s look to the Lord at this time of year and think not in terms of ancient festivities and mythical gods and goblins.  We are not fearful peasants who await the return of the sun in order to continue our lives.  We are sons and daughters of the Living God who can celebrate the return to Life of Jesus Christ every single day.  It is He who causes our lives to be filled with blessings.  It is the cross not the cradle we should be looking to.  It is to the heavens, awaiting our blessed hope, not the world with all of its elemental symbolism, fire (lights, glittery decorations and candles), water (snow), earth (vegetation and trees) and sky (flying reindeer and sleighs).

Further reading:

Pagan Origins of Christmas

Secular Website about religion and christmas

Occult website about pagan christmas traditions

Christmas Trees