Saturday, September 24, 2016

Angels & Demons

We are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 6:12)

My previous article may have raised a few eyebrows.

My contention then and now is that malignant spirits strive to maneuver and manipulate culture-shaping individuals and institutions. But this concept is foreign to folks—including  those who claim to have a supernatural worldview.  

Why is this?

One reason is our modern-Western presuppositions about how the world works are highly naturalistic or materialistic. Even Bible-believers tend to think of “spirits” and such as embarrassing relics of a bygone superstitious age.

Another cause for discomfort comes not from disbelief, but from misbelief. That is, the thinking of many regarding spiritual realities is shaped more by Hollywood than scripture.

As C.S. Lewis observes,

There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by both errors, and hail a materialist or a magician with the same delight.

Now, some may scoff at the idea that evil spirits are behind worldly systems and entities along the entire philosophical/geo-political spectrum Left to Right. Wouldn’t this pit demonic forces against each other?

Yes it would.

Haven’t you seen evil human beings fight one another for reasons all their own? I believe the same holds true for evil non-human beings.

Why assume that satanic forces are united in anything but hate? It makes sense that evil spirits lust for power and war for dominion over each other and all God’s creation. 

Finally, some simply cannot bear the thought that no earthly, coercive powers (not even their favorites) are fighting entirely on the side of the angels. Even so, this is likely the case.

In the end, dear reader, we’re exclusively obliged to Christ and His kingdom. So let’s lovingly, joyfully, and peacefully follow Him.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Pawns & Presidents

Remember when Justice Antonin Scalia died? (It was waaay back in February.) There were actually people on the Left who celebrated his death. I recall reading all sorts of nasty comments.

I thought of this the other day as I read folks on the Right gleefully speaking of Hillary Clinton’s being sick. Obviously, neither the Left nor the Right has monopolized meanness.

What’s wrong with us that we delight in death and sickness?

As I was ruminating on these things another thought intruded: You should pray for Hillary.

So, I did. “Father, please heal Hillary Clinton physically and spiritually.”

Short.
Simple.
Sincere.

Another alien thought immediately presented itself: You should pray for Donald too.

So, I did. “Father, please make Donald Trump physically and spiritually whole.”

And God moved.

I’ve no way of knowing if anything happened (or will happen) with Hillary and Donald, but I know God responded to my prayers by changing my attitude.

You see, dear reader, I’ve never been a fan of either of these two people. It’s likely I never will be. But the animosity in my heart was suddenly gone; as though the Holy Spirit simply melted it all away.

What a glorious, light feeling!  

Suddenly I saw anew that these are two sinful, broken people savaging each other to the approbation of other sinful, broken people; all from within in a sinful, broken system.

The full reality is this: Hillary and Donald are pawns not saviors.

We are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 6:12)

I knew this already, but as we all know, there’s a difference between knowing and knowing.

I don’t presume to speak for anyone but myself, but I understand more clearly that my fight—the battle God is calling me to engage—isn’t against Hillary or Donald; but against the malignant spiritual forces maneuvering and manipulating them.

Hillary and Donald…neither has my vote. Both have my prayers.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Foray Into The Prophetic

I’m going to make some bold predictions.

Let me set the stage for you…

The campaign has been absolutely ferocious. Presidential candidates, _______ and _______, are unabashed serial liars and they have savaged each other to the best of their abilities.

Naturally both of them claim that this election is the most important election ever and if their opponent wins it may very well be the last election until the next one. In short, the survival of the nation probably depends solely upon them.

Of course, the overwhelming majority of Americans couldn’t be more disappointed. The lament heard everywhere is, “_______ and _______ are the best we can do?”

Minds are absolutely boggled.

Okay, the stage is set.

Now for mind-boggling prognostications…

First, many folks will vote for a party, not a politician. That is, they will vote for _______ or _______ based upon little or nothing more than the (D) or the (R) that appears beside the names. (They will do this top to bottom.)

Second, incredibly large groups will vote not as much for _______ but rather against _______.

The thinking goes something like this: I hate _______ less than I hate _______ so I’d better vote for _______ because I’d hate to waste my vote!

Third, much smaller but exceptionally LOUDER groups (let’s call these “true believers”) will vote for _______ or _______ because they are worshipfully (and I mean this literally) committed to them.

Among these are people—some who claim to be Christian—who sacrifice friendships and family members to the would-be gods of State.

That is, they lack the capacity to individuate themselves from _______ or _______. Thus, if a person (no matter who or how close) is less than supportive of _______ or _______, that person is now perceived as a traitor or personal enemy.

Fourth and climactically, I can tell you that _______ is going to win.

Mark it down.

_______ will be President of the United States.

“True believers” everywhere will either be ecstatic or eviscerated.

Maybe you’re thinking, “C’mon, Steve, fill in the blanks! Tell us who’s gonna win—Donald or Hillary?”

Oh, I’m not talking about 2016! (My prophetic gifts are much more powerful than this.) I’m talking about 2020. Try to keep up.

History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before.
Nothing under the sun is truly new.
~Ecclesiastes 1:9