Religious Spirits

Religious Spirits

When I was a little girl, my non-Christian (yet moral) parents sent me to a private Episcopalian school for my education, and I graduated from there. The Episcopal church was my first taste of God, and I learned quite a bit, Episcopalian-style. I was required to go to a 30-minute chapel service every day that was very structured: stand up, sing, sit down, kneel, stand up, recite the Apostle’s creed, repeat prayers, etc. I did this every weekday, minus summers, nearly all my childhood up until I was 18 years old. I learned to have a very intellectual relationship with God, who was far, far away. I learned to past tests about my knowledge of the Bible, but I really didn’t hide the Word in my heart. (Psalm 119:11)

When I was a teenager, my mother became a born-again Christian and started taking me to Pentecostal, spirit-filled churches that welcomed the spontaneity of the Holy Spirit. I struggled horribly with this. I was unnerved. I thought my mother had lost her mind. I thought the things that went on in these churches were scary and not Godly because this is not what I had been taught through the Episcopalian church. I tried to understand and eventually got some understanding, but I was still bound to most of the religious doctrines I had been taught.

Later, I went to a Baptist college and started dating a Baptist and was seeped in the Baptist doctrines, taking tests again on my Bible knowledge to pass college classes. Even later I married a Methodist and went to the Methodist church.

I was a mess of doctrines and teachings and confusion. Deep inside of me I had a feeling that the Holy Spirit-directed kind of churches, no matter how bizarre to me, hit the mark more closely than anything else. Yet, I could not, no matter how I tried, raise my hands up to God comfortably as is the custom in the churches we were visiting, (see Nehemiah 8:6; Psalm 28:2, 63:4, 134:2, 141:2; Lamentations 3:41; I Timothy 2:8). I could not speak in other tongues, I certainly would never allow myself to be “slain in the Spirit”!

I was torn between two worlds. I would try going to the denominational churches and I would leave unsatisfied. I would be bored with the teaching. I would not feel the presence of God in those types of churches (sorry, no offense). Yet when I went to the charismatic churches, I was uncomfortable there too. I felt like a fish out of water. In my mind, I knew that Jesus said in Mark 16:

17 And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; 18 they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.

I knew what happened to the believers when the Holy Spirit came upon them in Acts 2:

4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

I knew the writings of Paul about the gifts of the Spirit in I Corinthians 12:

1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant: 2 You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led. 3 Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit. 4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. 7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8 for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.

But all these scriptures were never taught to me at my school. I couldn’t reconcile the scriptures with my well-entrenched religious paradigms. I struggled with this until my mid 30s.

In my mid to late 30s, events started happening in my life that caused me to start waking up out of my spirit of stupor (Romans 11:8) to start seeking God more earnestly. As I started reading my Bible (for the first time not just to pass a test), I found this very telling scripture, where Jesus quoted Isaiah in both Matthew and Mark (so this is mentioned three times in the Bible – pay attention!)

8 These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. 9 And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.

Jesus says the commandments of men, the doctrines of men are useless in worshipping Him and having intimacy with Him. So, had I been taught wrongly? Yes!

Because of all the well-meaning teachings of the schools I went to, I had developed strongholds in my mind of the way God and “religion” should be. I had put God in this neat little package and any deviance from that was unacceptable. (See our Paradigms article.) I even remember this very Jezebellic voice in my head telling me when my mother had become a Christian, “What does SHE know? YOU have been going to church ALL your life!” I remember being split about this – on one hand, I thought, “That’s right!” On the other hand, I thought, “She’s my mother and a good one – what do I know?!?” At the time, I did not know that was a demon trying to sow discord between me and my mother.

The religious strongholds I had created had allowed demons to enter me who would not let me have my freedom in the Lord. They would not let me worship God with all my heart and all my soul and all my strength. It was a huge internal battle I faced for many years, until the stronghold started weakening through seeking and study and prayer and understanding.

One day I was reading my Bible and I came across this scripture in Matthew 6:

7 And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. 9 In this manner, therefore, pray: (What is known as The Lord’s prayer follows).

I felt impressed that the vain repetitions (such as reciting the Lord’s prayer, as I did day after day at Episcopalian chapel) may cause religious spirits to enter you. Because Jesus said, “Do NOT use vain repetitions,” and when you do something that Jesus said NOT to do, the demons have a legal right to enter you. You see, the Lord’s Prayer became a vain repetition to me. I could say it backward, forward, sideways because I had said it without meaning day after day for a decade. I could say it while thinking about something else. It didn’t mean anything to me any more. And, Jesus gave what we call “The Lord’s prayer” as a model. He said to pray “in this manner”, not “these exact words over and over again”.

When I finally understood with my mind, I could have the religious spirits cast out of me. And then what freedom came to me! I had tremendous joy! I could go to a spirit-filled church, raise my hands, sing at the top of my lungs, dance if I wanted to and just generally be a fool for God! One of my favorite scriptures, from someone who had no religiosity was from II Samuel 6:

21 So David said to Michal, It was before the LORD, who chose me instead of your father and all his house, to appoint me ruler over the people of the LORD, over Israel. Therefore I will play music before the LORD. 22 And I will be even more undignified than this, and will be humble in my own sight.

So, are you having trouble achieving the level of intimacy that you want with God? Do you want to hear His voice but can’t? Do you want to move in the supernatural (God’s world) but feel that something is holding you back? Maybe you need to deal with religious spirits and strongholds.

Warning signs that you might have a religious spirit (not an exhaustive list):

  • You drop names of all the TV evangelists like they’re your personal friends.
  • You’re jealous of someone else’s spiritual gifts.
  • You cop a holier than thou attitude.
  • You find yourself being critical of the Christian things that your Christian friends say or do.
  • You ask everyone to pray for you about the slightest little distresses.
  • You feel compelled to tell everyone about your latest mission trip.
  • Your mind is closed to any new teachings/revelations about the God/Jesus/The Holy Spirit/The Kingdom of Heaven, etc.
  • You preach the gospel to people who you know are already saved, baptized and filled with the Spirit.
  • You question and argue over any testimony or any revelation another Christian had.
  • You say “I have to pray about that” without really meaning it, and for any inconsequential thing, such as a friend inviting you to lunch.
  • You have thoughts or you say things like these:
    – “I’ve heard ALL the teachings.”
    – “I know what my Bible says better than anyone.”
    – “You can’t tell me something I don’t already know.”
    – “I went to Bible College.”
    – “I never missed a Sunday school class all my years growing up.”
    – “I watch Christian television 24/7.”
    – “I’m special. My parents (grandparents, etc.) were missionaries.”
    – “I’m one of the ‘chosen’” (if you’re Jewish).

Are You Going Backwards?

Are You Going Backwards?

My first major introduction to rejection due to being involved in the deliverance ministry came at the hand of a church pastor – a rabbi of a Messianic synagogue. My mother and I wanted to join the church, but we disagreed about telling the pastor about the deliverance ministry. She wanted to tell him, I didn’t think it was necessary. She merely wanted him to know about it – she didn’t necessarily want to minister there, unless he wanted her to. We agreed to pray about it.

One day she called me and told me that she had been reading her Bible, and she felt the Lord plop a big word of knowledge upon her – exactly what to tell the pastor and in what order. When she told me this, I felt it confirmed in my spirit that she was right, we needed to tell the pastor. So we made an appointment. She left her books with him and asked him to pray about us joining the church.

Many weeks went by, and we still hadn’t heard an answer from the pastor on whether we could join or not. She called him, reminded him who she was, and was curtly told that they weren’t in the same “place” and it wasn’t going to “work out”. He was very abrupt with her.

After I got over the disbelief and shock, the pain started to set in for me. I wanted to be a part of this congregation badly. My mother and I loved going to worship there. We felt the Holy Spirit was in the music and dance, and even though I felt the Spirit was often “quenched”, I felt something special there. We were making lots of friends, and it broke my heart to think we couldn’t go back.

I prayed, I cried out to God, and I pondered all this a lot. One day my mind went back to thinking, “why?” As I pondered why would the pastor be so rude to my Mother, as I pondered what was the “root” of his problem, all of the sudden, my mind was taken back to the meeting we had with him, and I distinctly remembered a thought that entered my mind while my mom was giving her testimony. I thought, “It must be hard for a man of God to hear that if this nice little old lady had demons tearing out of her, that he might have demons living within him too.” Mom was saying that she was a “good girl”, and yet she had plenty of deliverance the first time she was ministered to.

I felt the Spirit telling me that this was the root cause: this man didn’t like what she was saying and it was due to pride, his own pride. He couldn’t bear the thought of anyone implying that he might have demons. And what does the Bible say about pride, was my next thought. “Pride comes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.” (Proverbs 16:18) I thought, this man is going to fall if he doesn’t repent about his attitude.

Then I thought, but the pastor appears to be so humble and worshipful in front of the congregation. Yes, but there is a demon of pride “lurking” in the background, was my next thought. “But he, a Gentile, was called by God to establish a Messianic synagogue. How could a man called of God to do such a thing be so prideful?” The next thought was, “Because even if you’re called by God, if you don’t keep growing in the things of God, if you get complacent, if you don’t keep seeking God, some thing is going to seek you – a demon. If you don’t keep growing with God, you’re going backward.”

I started realizing that there’s no such thing as reaching a plateau in your spiritual walk, unless you let it become a plateau. If you get a prideful attitude, like someone I know who has said, “I’ve heard ALL the teachings,” you’re opening yourself up for demons to enter and distort your mind and take away the wisdom, counsel, knowledge, understanding and the Fear of the Lord that God had previously given you.

I had just finished reading the books of Kings and Chronicles and I was constantly amazed and shocked that several kings would start off being good, righteous, God-fearing kings, and then somewhere along the line, they became rebellious and corrupt in their latter, aging years. I got the idea that the pastor had started off young on fire for God, but somewhere along the line, he missed it, like the Kings of Judah. He got his big, beautiful new building for his congregation now, so he’s “made” it. So he thinks. But when someone presented him with the next phase in his growth, to learn about Jesus’ deliverance power, he rejected it. Plus, I had the feeling God was not pleased with him quenching the Holy Spirit in the worship. I had often noticed how at crucial moments in the worship when I thought the Holy Spirit was going to move with a message, the pastor would jump in and start talking and stop the flow.

Back to the statement mentioned earlier that if we don’t constantly seek God, something will seek us – a demon. I had just read the first 10 chapters of Job this morning, where Satan went before God and asked Him if he could destroy Job. The point is Satan is out to destroy us. He wants to sift all of us like wheat. Period. We can’t give him an opportunity. And if we are a man or woman of God doing some kind of ministry or work for Him, even more so do we have to guard our thoughts and our mouths and seek God’s will all the time.

Later on, I had been reading the Proverbs, and I came across this one proverb that caught my attention:

One who turns away his ear from hearing the law, Even his prayer is an abomination. (Proverbs 28:9)

One morning as I was waking up, this Proverb came to my mind, and I started thinking, “The law, the law. There are so many laws in the Torah. God wouldn’t look upon someone’s prayer as being an abomination if they ate pork, would He?” As I was pondering this in my mind, very suddenly, these scriptures came to me:

36 Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” 37 Jesus said to him, “ ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets. (Matthew 22)

I realized that, as Jesus said, on these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets. The Pastor, because he addressed my mother with such a lack of respect and a spirit of haughtiness, did not follow these two commandments, or “all the law”, at all. He did not love the Lord his God with all his heart, soul and mind, because if he did, he would not have been embracing Jesus’ deliverance power, not rejecting it. And he certainly didn’t love his neighbor as himself, or he would not have been so arrogant and rude to my mother about the topic.

A few weeks later, I was reading the book of Jeremiah and I came across this scripture that caught my attention:

But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be My people. And walk in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well with you.’ 24 Yet they did not obey or incline their ear, but followed the counsels and the dictates of their evil hearts, and went backward and not forward. 25 Since the day that your fathers came out of the land of Egypt until this day, I have even sent to you all My servants the prophets, daily rising up early and sending them. 26 Yet they did not obey Me or incline their ear, but stiffened their neck. They did worse than their fathers. 27 “Therefore you shall speak all these words to them, but they will not obey you. You shall also call to them, but they will not answer you. 28 “So you shall say to them, ‘This is a nation that does not obey the voice of the LORD their God nor receive correction. Truth has perished and has been cut off from their mouth. (Jeremiah 7:23)

Since I have not been super-experienced in hearing God’s voice, I had been wondering if all these words I had received from the Lord were my imagination or not. Then I saw the word “backward” in this scripture and it clicked with the word I had received about going “backward”. If you’re not going “forward” as the scripture says (I heard, if you’re not growing with God – same thing), then you’re going backward. AND, to top it off, the night before, I was listening to a Patricia King recording, and the Lord brought to my remembrance that she had said, “The Lord doesn’t tell anything to His people that He doesn’t back up with scripture.”

About a week later I was finishing reading a great book called, You Can Hear the Voice of God by Steve Sampson. I was on the next to the last page when I came across this:

“The Lord deals with all of us. To the Christian, He corrects us, He provokes us, He challenges us and He convicts us of sin. When He calls us to change, whether it is in repentance over a specific thing or a change in any part of our life, we have a choice—we can hear His voice, or we can harden our hearts.

The moment our hearts resist Him and begin to harden, we cease to move forward but rather backward.

Yet they did not obey or incline their ear, but followed the counsels and the dictates of their evil hearts, and went backward and not forward. (Jeremiah 7:24)

“We think when we become callused or hardened we are simply not moving forward. But when we are not moving forward, our movement is actually backward, because His movement is always forward!”

Yet another confirmation!!! Thank you, Lord!

Remember, remember, remember: the take-away from this article is that you have to constantly seek God – that’s loving God with all your heart, soul and mind. And then you won’t go backwards, you won’t have to concern yourself with becoming like the reprobate kings of the Old Testament. Keep going forward with God!

About Pastoral Madness

About Pastoral Madness

It is in the news. Pastors and evangelists who keep asking for money but live lavishly. They have, and they want more. Excessive spending on luxuries for their ministries and personal lives. Not a clear-cut line where the expenses for ministries end and personal expenses begin. So much so that a Congressional investigation has started, and those investigated claim separation of church and state as a shelter to continue their financial operations. Although high-profile ministers have come to the attention of officials, there are many more ministries that operate similarly but on a lesser scale.

More news: Ministers who divorce and continue ministering, with the approval of the congregation.

Not long after a lavish, spectacular wedding of a high-profile ministerial couple, the pastor-husband beats his evangelist-wife publicly. He is arrested, and after legal proceedings, comes back to the pulpit and receives a standing ovation from his congregation. Not only is there Pastoral Madness, but there also seems to be “congregation madness”!

Another high-profile couple co-pastoring a church divorces. The woman continues appearing on her TV program, and is offered a nice position with another ministry. The man does not miss a beat pastoring his church.

Not very old news: A highly influential, mega-church pastor is accused of homosexual activity by his homosexual partner, who also exposed the pastor’s alleged drug use. A few months after he stepped down from the pulpit, he wanted his “followers” to provide financial support for him and his wife to go college to obtain a certain degree.

Old news: A famous pastor is caught with a prostitute. This judgmental pastor was judging others while visiting prostitutes. His sexual escapade makes the news, he repents on national TV with tears streaming down his face, and later, he is caught with the prostitute again. He is still pastoring.

Old news, about the same time as above: A married couple with a large ministry and a very much watched TV program cry and moan for more money constantly or the program is going to fold. A financial mess is uncovered. An investigation uncovering excessive spending hits the news, where it became a joke that their dogs have air-conditioned dog houses. Jail time for him. Divorce. The woman marries the pastor’s best friend. He is out of jail and has started a ministry again, with a television show.

More stories like these are happening across the country in smaller, less famous churches and ministries. These stories rarely get in print, but there are many. What is happening to the churches?


Pastoral Madness!


I am one of those persons whom pastors like to call church-hoppers. But here is the catch: because I am in the deliverance ministry, many pastors don’t want me in their church. I have been kicked out of some churches. From others, God led me out, but not soon enough–I wanted to leave, but He would not let me go until He showed me something that He wanted me to learn.

I learned about Pastoral Madness in a very small church, rather financially poor. I had visited the church, and I did not like it–it looked dirty, and the children were not disciplined. God made me go to that church anyway. As I started observing some anomalies, I wanted to leave. The Lord said “No.” This was repeated several times, as I was seeing more and more things that disturbed me. I finally became disgusted with the pastor and desperately wanted to leave.

One day, the pastor’s face came to my mind, like a vision. This happened a few times thereafter. I did not want his face on my mind. Because of my experience in the deliverance ministry, I discerned a demon giving me that vision, so I called a friend for deliverance.

As soon as she told the demon to manifest, it did. She asked his name and he did not want to give it. She asked how he entered and he said “through her pastor”. She asked the name of the demon’s boss and he said “Pastoral Madness”. I was delivered of that demon and the vision did not return.

Now if you think this is far out and I don’t have scriptural backing, read this:

And it came to pass also on another sabbath, that he entered into the synagogue and taught: and there was a man whose right hand was withered. And the scribes and Pharisees watched him, whether he would heal on the sabbath day; that they might find an accusation against him. But he knew their thoughts, and said to the man which had the withered hand, Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And he arose and stood forth. Then said Jesus unto them, I will ask you one thing; Is it lawful on the sabbath days to do good, or to do evil? to save life, or to destroy it? And looking round about upon them all, he said unto the man, Stretch forth thy hand. And he did so: and his hand was restored whole as the other. And they were filled with madness; and communed one with another what they might do to Jesus. (Luke 6:6-11)

10 But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities. 11 Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord. 12 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; 13 And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you; 14 Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children: 15 Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; 16 But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet. 17 These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. 18 For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. 19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. 20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. 22 But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire. (2 Peter 2:10-22)

The first scripture refers to the Pharisees. They were accurate in all matters referring to the law; however, their thoughts were about murdering Jesus. Jesus knew it, and asked them if it was lawful to save life or to destroy it. They, the “ecclesiastical” group, were filled with madness.

The second scripture refers to a prophet filled with madness. In both scriptures, it shows that men who were spiritual leaders were filled with madness. In the first case, because of spiritual jealousy and a desire for power. In the second case, because of greed.

What the Lord showed me.

I came back home wondering about that Pastoral Madness demon. I felt I was released to leave the church. Then the Lord explained to me that Pastoral Madness is the demon that corrupts religious leaders, and he does it this way:

1- The demon starts by building the pastor’s ego. The demon speaks to the pastor’s mind telling him he is an important person now.

2- Next, he tells the pastor that he is one of God’s favorites, that he is special. The pastor starts feeling that he is superior to the congregation. This is the teaching of the Nicolaitians: clergy and laity. (Revelation 2:15)

3- The demon picks people from the congregation to start idolizing the pastor. In their eyes, the pastor can’t do any wrong. They laugh at all the pastor’s jokes, and applaud for any little thing the pastor says or does from the pulpit. This keeps building up the pastor’s ego.

4- The demon tells the pastor he deserves more salary, a luxury car, a bigger building, a TV program. The congregation starts feeling the pressure to give more and more money.

5- The demon tells the pastor that he is special, anointed, chosen, elected, and that in this exalted status he can do some things that are prohibited to other people, but not to him, of course. The demons tells him that he is so pleasing to God that he can get away with anything.

6- The pastor starts demanding more giving from the congregation. He might imply or even say outright that those who withhold their money will be cursed. By this time he is also thinking that his wife has not kept up with him, that she does not look the part, perhaps he made a mistake in marrying her, and this is not the woman that God had for him.

7- The pastor starts feeling he needs bodyguards, who not only keep him safe outside, but also keep members of the congregation away from him when he leaves the pulpit.

8- Due to his TV program, the pastor starts to become known, and he starts to be invited to speak in out-of-town places. Coach travel is no longer acceptable, only first-class will do. Later he feels he deserves to rent a private airplane, then buy his own airplane.

9- He now feels he needs a new wife, because his first wife is not a match for him. After all, he is not the same person that he was before. Now he is important, famous and rich. He has a chauffeur, a pilot and bodyguards. He needs a trophy wife.

I hesitated to write this next part, but this has been in the media lately: because a divorce does not look good for their careers, some pastors murder their wives, making it look as a suicide. In their madness, they believe murder is a better solution than divorce. About 15 or 20 years ago, there was a case in Dallas about a pastor who wanted to be bishop. He had been having an affair with a beautiful prophetess, the daughter of a bishop. He planned the murder of his wife, and created his alibi by using his car phone to leave messages on his home answering machine where he gave the time of each call, creating the illusion that there’s no way he could have murdered his wife as he was calling from his car phone at the time of the murder. However, the phone records showed that when he was leaving messages saying what time it was, it was not the correct time. He was the primary suspect, and there was a lengthy trial. Because of lack of evidence, he was freed. He moved to California and found a job at a church there. This is how far Pastoral Madness can go.

Pastoral Madness may be in a pastor from the beginning of his calling. I have ministered to poor and humble pastors in Mexico, and I have cast out Pastoral Madness from them. I was surprised, because I really did not expect them to have it. But greed, adultery and desire for fame and recognition can work their way into a soul no matter the financial status of man.

In my experience, the majority of spiritual leaders reject the deliverance ministry. They explain their position with cliches such as “we are Christ-minded, not devil-minded”, ignoring the fact that a large part of Jesus’ ministry was deliverance. Because of their rejection of this ministry and the erroneous belief that “Christians don’t have demons”, they succumb to the wiles of the devil, because they have not been trained to recognize the devil’s traps, much less combat them. Thus, instead of being overcomers, they become losers in the warfare. It becomes the case of the blind leading the blind.

Prayer Labyrinths?

Prayer Labyrinths?

In one of the local newspapers today was a photo and an article about a Methodist church that has installed a prayer labyrinth for members to walk over and meditate and pray on. This is not the first of these I have seen lately that a church has installed. Something was bothering me about it, so I did a quick search on the Internet.

What I discovered is that the origin of this type of thing is pagan. From Wikipedia: “As other pagan cultural practices, the Prayer Labyrinth was adopted by the Church across Europe during the medieval times, being often used as a means to meditate, pray and connect with God in a higher spiritual way.”

My question is, why would the “church” adopt a pagan practice? What possible good could come out of that?

Then I found this blog article which I believe says it all. Take a minute to read it.

One day a couple of years ago I was reading my Bible and this really jumped out at me in Isaiah 2:

5 O house of Jacob, come and let us walk
In the light of the LORD.
6 For You have forsaken Your people, the house of Jacob,
Because they are filled with eastern ways;
They are soothsayers like the Philistines,
And they are pleased with the children of foreigners.

When we become filled with “eastern ways”, we are not walking in the light of the Lord. God told us to come out and be separate from among non-Christian people. When we participate in new age things, like labyrinths, yoga, acupuncture, reflexology and a host of other occult practices, I think we may be displeasing Him, disobeying Him, and removing ourselves from His will and His divine protection. Things may not “go well” for us as He promised, because of our disobedience.

The problem is most of the time we don’t even KNOW or REALIZE these things have occult origins. We just blindly accept things because they “appear” to be okay, or “appear” to be health-inducing, or “appear” to be good for us.

Remember, it all started when Satan tricked Eve in the garden of Eden. She was confused about which tree she could and couldn’t eat from, and instead of checking it out and making sure she was doing the right thing, she just fell right for Satan’s deception. That’s how easily we can be deceived by the father of lies. Think about it.

My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests; because you have ignored the law of your God, I also will ignore your children. (Hosea 4:6)

Observe and obey all these words which I command you, that it may go well with you and your children after you forever, when you do what is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God. (Deuteronomy 12:28)

Falling in the Spirit / Slain in the Spirit

Falling in the Spirit / Slain in the Spirit

I have been in Pentecostal and Full Gospel churches since I became a born again Christian. I have observed that when people fall in the Spirit, they seem to float downwards and meet the floor softly. I have also noticed that many people, possibly the majority, want to fall or be slain in the Spirit. Perhaps they assume that falling is good for them, or falling is a sign of holiness, or whatever a religious spirit tells them that “being slain” is. These people, I’ve noticed, fall differently. They are eager to fall, and many throw themselves back. Since it is the flesh working and not the Spirit, they fall hard. Hence the need for “catchers” to stand behind in churches.

I searched the Bible and saw that when the Glory of God enters a place of congregation, people cannot stand and fall to the ground. Such was the case when Solomon’s temple was completed, and they did not have “catchers” there—at least the Bible does not mention any. When Jesus said “I Am He” to those who came to arrest him in the Garden of Gethsemane, they fell down but apparently were not hurt. The one who was hurt was the soldier from whom Peter cut off the ear.

And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place, that the cloud filled the house of the Lord, So that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud: for the glory of the Lord had filled the house of the Lord. (1 Kings 8:10-11)

Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye? They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them. As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground. (John 18:4-6)

Observe that falling under the power of the Spirit of God happens to both those who are for God (the priests) and those who are against God (Judas and the soldiers who came to arrest Jesus).

I believe that if people are really falling in the Spirit, catchers are not needed.

Certainly there are ministers who push. They believe that people must fall when they pray or touch them. I have been pushed more than once. I don’t fall and I am not going to throw myself back just to please the minister. What is the point of “falling if the Spirit” if God is not at work?

Another dimension of “falling”

Not many people know that there is a demon that pushes people back and makes them fall violently. As spirit-filled Christians, we have been given a gift of discernment of spirits, and I have that gift. And since I have also been in the deliverance ministry since 1980, I know what I am talking about.

I had been attending a church for several years when the Holy Spirit warned me that a certain woman would be joining the church. I knew the woman. She was a “charismatic witch”, a Christian who prays ungodly prayers about people who do not want to submit to her will or who do not agree with her.

I warned the pastor and the wife. However, when the woman arrived, she came with recommendations from other people and was received with open arms. During the service, the pastor would give her the microphone for “words”. Then he would turn to take the mic elsewhere and would not see that the woman had been violently thrown back, with the people sitting behind her holding onto her chair so it (and the woman) would not fall on them.

Somebody finally told the pastor, and one Sunday the pastor called her to the stage, placing catchers behind her. Again she fell back after her “word” and was caught. The following Sunday he stood her at floor level, in front of the stage, with catchers behind her. This time, when she finished the word, she was thrown violently forward instead of backwards, hitting a chair in the first row, right next to the pastor’s wife. The catchers could not do a thing. The pastor stopped giving her the mic, and in fact, he stopped giving anyone the mic.

But that is not the end of the story.

Not long after that, in the prayer line, a woman was thrown violently back and hit her head. I knew the lady, so I called her. She told me she could not go to work that afternoon (Sunday), and next day both her husband and daughter left for work thinking she was all right, but she could not get up from bed and could not eat for a few days. The pastor’s wife later told me that the church had to compensate her–there was a settlement of some kind.

Then I witnessed this myself when I was praying for a woman in the prayer line. There were two catchers, one behind the person on each side of the one for whom I was praying. I know when someone is going to fall, and I am sure the catchers know, too. There are signals that let you know – the person gets wobbly and weak looking. This lady did not give signals at all. All of a sudden, she was thrown violently away from me, fell backwards and hit the floor with her head. It was as if somebody had pushed her with both hands! It was completely unexpected. The catchers could not react on time.

I told the pastor what happened. His answer was that I had to wait for the catchers to be behind the person in order to pray.

I decided not to minister in that prayer line any longer. I had been in that church many years, and that had not happened before. It started happening after the charismatic witchcraft woman came in.

In spite of this, I believe churches should not have catchers. If God does the falling, the people will not get hurt. The ones who throw themselves to the floor will be discouraged from doing so. They should never do it in the first place. And if there is a demon throwing people back violently in a church, then it is time for repentance, change, and serious spiritual warfare.

Pornography and Low Self-Esteem

Pornography and Low Self-Esteem

Pornography is nothing new. It is very old and there were pagan religions in antiquity that used pornography in their rites. With the advent of photography, then movies, and now Internet, accessing porn has been made easier and easier.

In years of ministering deliverance mainly to women, I have encountered cases of married women who have had very low self-esteem. Low self-esteem, if allowed to fester, can motivate bizarre behavior.

Both low self-esteem and pornography are demons. The enemy can use the porn demon in a husband to really create demonic self-esteem problems in his wife. The whole process leads to broken marriages and destroyed lives.

Married men who are into porn know it is wrong, so they will try to cover their tracks and not leave evidence of their obsessive addiction. All the wife knows is that the husband has lost interest in her, and she feels rejected. The husband avoids any discussion of the subject, but eventually the wife will demand an explanation. The husband will lay the blame on the wife, saying, “You are not attractive enough”, or “You are too fat”, or “You do not satisfy me”.

The woman believes the lies and now looks at herself in a new light. “I thought my body was ok…” or “I didn’t’ think I was that fat…” or “Other men have found me attractive in the past…” then “I guess I really am not attractive” and “I guess I really am fat and ugly”.

She believes the lies and her self-esteem goes to rock bottom, while the feelings of rejection rise. Then she might think that perhaps there is another woman. But she does not find evidence–no lipstick on the collar, no strange perfume. She might spend months torturing herself trying to find out about the “other woman”, and the husband, of course, denies it very convincingly because he is not dealing with a “real” woman.

Another thing she might notice is a financial problem. Where is the money going? The wife might think the money is going to the “other woman”. A man addicted to porn may spend a lot of money on his addiction.

When a woman tells me her husband has rejected her and is not happy with the way she looks, I ask her if she suspects that he might be into pornography. Many times the answer is, “Oh no, he is not,” and it might take months or even years for her to find out that he is.

So, the man looks at porn on the computer (or somewhere else) and masturbates. What he sees on the computer does not look like his wife at all, so he satisfies himself with those images and not with his wife. Now notice, what he sees with his eye excites him and he brings relief with his own hand. There is an eye-hand connection.

I mention this because Christian men who fall into this pattern think masturbation is ok, because after all, they are not going to bed with another woman, right? So it is not adultery, right? Wrong! It IS adultery. Christian man, have you not read the Gospels? (See scripture references at the end of this article.) Christian woman, adultery is a biblical basis for divorce. You don’t have to live with your husband’s sin, much less sleep with the man!


This super-demon will make “her” entrance for sure. The man who masturbates and is addicted to porn will be visited by Succubus in his sleep. (A woman who masturbates will be visited by Incubus.) Succubus will give the man pleasure in his own bed, while he sleeps.

He might like to call it a wet dream, but in reality he is having sex with a demon. It does not matter if he is a Christian; the demon does not care. In fact, the demon prefers a Christian man because this will eventually lead him to the place called Hell, if he does not repent.

A Christian woman I ministered to discovered her Christian husband’s addiction and divorced him. She went through the trauma of rejection first before she found the cause of the rejection. It was not long after the man moved out of the house that she awoke one night because of a Succubus visitation. The bed, on the side where her ex used to sleep, was being depressed as if someone was sitting or laying there. She commanded the spirit to leave in the name of Jesus, and it left and never came back. The Succubus was looking for him!

In some cases, Christian women cannot get Godly counseling at their church because the pastors or ministers are into pornography themselves. They are not and cannot be objective in their counseling, much less Godly.

A young woman I ministered to told me that her husband wanted her to perform perverted sexual acts, and she did not want to do them. I asked her if she had gone to her pastor about the problem. Her answer was that she and her husband had gone to counsel with the pastor and his wife, and they were in agreement that she had to do them. This couple eventually divorced.

A woman who goes through all the trauma and pain of a porn-caused divorce not only needs Godly counseling but also a lot of deliverance, because demons have entered her from or because of her husband. The first demon that should be cast out of her is the evil soul of her husband, by breaking the evil soul tie between her and her husband in the name of Jesus Christ.

Job 31:1-12 deals with this problem. Some Bible versions are clearer than others in treating the subject matter. There is a Spanish version that is extremely clear. I want you to take note to the references to the eye and the hand which are in most versions. Also observe and discern the Biblical curse that comes upon those who practice pornography/masturbation.

1 I made a covenant with mine eyes; How then should I look upon a virgin? 2 For what is the portion from God above, And the heritage from the Almighty on high? 3 Is it not calamity to the unrighteous, And disaster to the workers of iniquity? 4 Doth not he see my ways, And number all my steps? 5 If I have walked with falsehood, And my foot hath hasted to deceit 6 (Let me be weighed in an even balance, That God may know mine integrity); 7 If my step hath turned out of the way, And my heart walked after mine eyes, And if any spot hath cleaved to my hands: 8 Then let me sow, and let another eat; Yea, let the produce of my field be rooted out. 9 If my heart hath been enticed unto a woman, And I have laid wait at my neighbor’s door; 10 Then let my wife grind unto another, And let others bow down upon her. 11 For that were a heinous crime; Yea, it were an iniquity to be punished by the judges: 12 For it is a fire that consumeth unto Destruction, And would root out all mine increase. (ASV Job 31:1-12)

27 Ye have heard that it was said, Thou shalt not commit adultery: 28 but I say unto you, that every one that looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. 29 And if thy right eye causeth thee to stumble, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not thy whole body be cast into hell. 30 And if thy right hand causeth thee to stumble, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not thy whole body go into hell. (ASV Matthew 5:27-30)

Compare Job 31:1 with Matthew 5:28: looking upon a woman “to lust after her”. Some versions added “with lust” to Job 31:1, because this is what the original author was talking about.

Job 31:5 refers to the falsehood and deceit that an adulterer deals his wife, whether his adultery is with a real woman and real sex, or by images of porn and masturbation.

Job 31:7 refers to his heart following his eyes of lust, and his hand becoming spotted by the sin of masturbation. Compare to Matthew 5:29- 30, where Jesus advises that it is preferable that you pluck your eye out and cut your hand off, if that is going to stop you from the sin of lust and masturbation, because this sin, called a heinous crime in Job 31:11, will lead a Christian man to lose his salvation.

Remember, once saved, not necessarily always saved. It depends on how you live your life.

The Game of Life

The Game of Life

This is the story of a woman gambler who lost the game of life. I am going to call her Consuela. We were both from Cuba. Consuela invited her Cuban friends to come over once a week to play cards.

One day, Consuela had an accident with a leg injury, leaving her unable to drive, so she invited me, my mother, and another lady named Martha to play cards at her house.

Consuela knew I was a Spirit-filled Christian. The other ladies were Catholic, and Consuela explained to me that her husband was an atheist and did not let her practice Catholicism or anything else.

One day at her house, I asked her if she would let me pray for her legs. She agreed, and I asked her to sit straight up in her chair so I could lift her legs and see if they were the same length. The legs were obviously different lengths, in the amount of an inch or so. My mother and Martha were around us watching closely, and they saw the difference.

I prayed for her legs, and there was a sudden movement as both legs became the same length. Consuela said excitedly that she could feel a pull in one of her legs. Her eyes were like saucers, I guess from trying to decide whether to believe the miracle or not. Martha, on the other hand, started walking in circles with her hands in her face, crying “Oh, my God!!” non-stop. My mother bit her lip, and I could see her mind going at full speed looking for an explanation that was logical and earthly, and not finding any, she went back to her chair and sat in silence.

The whole group of card-playing ladies really never fully accepted me because I was “a holy roller”. I had written a booklet especially for them which I titled, “A Letter To My Catholic Friends”. It was intended to explain why I was not a Catholic. I had it printed and gave one booklet to each lady. My supernatural testimony was there, which was enough for someone to ask some questions, but it elicited only one comment from one lady who did not agree with me on one minor point.

About two years later Consuela invited a new friend to her house and threw a party so she could introduce her new friend to us.

Not long after that, I went to Consuela’s house with a relative of mine who had not been there. Consuela wanted to show her the house (I went along for the tour) and she opened a cabinet door where there was a hidden altar. She promptly shut the door, but I can’t believe she had forgotten that the altar was there. It was almost like she wanted me to see it.

I knew what this altar was. It was a Santeria altar, Santeria being a specific form of witchcraft from Cuba. I acted as if I did not see it and did not question her about it.

She already had experienced the power of the Lord Jesus Christ and the miracle on her leg done in His name, and she never mentioned it or asked any questions about it. I realized that the new friend was inducing her into Santeria.

Consuela had always been an avid card player. She was the one who insisted on playing for money. Although she was very affluent, she would get angry if she did not win.

At our table, she was the best player, and I came in a close second. But I played primarily so I could bring my mother, as this was her only weekly outing and she enjoyed it. Secondly, because I enjoyed solving any kind of puzzles like card games. And thirdly, because of the fellowship.

I did not mind if I lost, but I tried to play the best I could. This was a dumb card game, the kind that children play. It was nothing like poker or bridge–just a step up from Old Maid.

We had played the same card game every week, and by now I knew the average time it took to win a game. One day, Consuela started to win games faster than normal. I found it strange and started observing her. When it was her turn, she would pick a card from the pile in expectation. And sure enough, it was the card she needed. I would watch her lay her cards down with an expression of triumph in her face.

I got a funny feeling, like there was something abnormal happening. Just then, the Holy Spirit told me, “witchcraft!” Very low, and shielding my face with the cards in my hand, I said, “I break the power of this witchcraft, in the name of Jesus.”

Things started to change. I watched her. The cards she was picking were not as she expected. At the beginning she showed unbelief, as if there was something wrong. Then she got angry.

I can’t remember who won that game. I went home and forgot all about it.

The next time we played, she started winning right away. She would lay her cards down when the rest of us were barely starting. Then I remembered what happened the week before, and again I commanded the power of witchcraft to be broken in the name of the Lord Jesus.

This time, Consuela knew it was not a coincidence. She started looking around the table, and she zeroed in on me. She knew I had done it, got very angry, and did not want to play with me again. She formed a new table with other ladies and left me and my mother out.

I wonder about those poor ladies losing every game they played, not knowing what was really happening.

Consuela had made a pact with the devil to satisfy her desire to win. A pact with the devil, selling her soul for four dollars a game. And that, after witnessing the power of God in her own body.

Recently I saw her at a restaurant with a young lady. When she looked at me, I saw fear in her face. She left the restaurant as fast as she could after finishing her meal.

I hope something happens that causes her to repent and bring Jesus into her life. If that does not happen, I wish her a very, very long life.

Are you a Pearl Harbor?

A Letter to a Friend (Are you a Pearl Harbor?)

You are in a war, whether you realize it or not, whether you want to believe it or not. It’s a spiritual war, and you can’t see the enemy but you definitely feel his presence.

Our God is a God of war. Practically the entire Old Testament is about wars. Even though they were physical wars, they are a type and shadow of the spiritual war that people – Christians and non-Christians alike – are engaged in with the enemy (Satan, the Hebrew word for the accuser, the adversary, also originally named Lucifer by God) whether they know it or not.

The modern church has depicted God as a God of love, which is true, but they have omitted that He is also a God of war. Look up all the scriptures that depict God as a God of war. He is also a God of righteousness and justice, and in order for Him to be those things, that means there has to be good and evil, right and wrong. The wrong things need to be corrected, which is where the war comes in. Look up all the scriptures in the New Testament where Jesus went to war with demons, casting them out of people. Read Revelation. Look at the war that is going to happen – the war of wars.

Think of yourself as Pearl Harbor. When Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, the US was not officially in WWII. We were just staying neutral, staying out of it, minding our own business, etc. The Japanese planned a surprise attack to maximize the devastation they could achieve. Why were the so successful? Because the US blithely thought they were not in the war, therefore why would there be any reason to be attacked? So here come the bombs from the Japanese on sitting ducks, taking our good men by complete surprise, demolishing the lives of hundreds of young men and their families forever.

So, what happened next? The US got ANGRY. ANGRY. Righteous anger rose up first. The second thing that happened is that the nation probably went to pray (back in the ’40s I suspect the US was much more Godly than it is today). Then #3, the US formed a strategy to attack the enemy, cripple them and hopefully end the war. It took us several years before the attack was actually executed because we wanted to make sure it would not fail. In the end, of course, you know that the dropping of the nuclear bomb on Japan worked and devastated Japan in even larger numbers and ended the war.

So you are Pearl Harbor and the enemy has you zeroed in on his scope. He keeps dropping bombs because you have not done all three steps as described above. You’ve gotten angry and frustrated and you’ve prayed. But what is your strategy of counterattack?

That is where spiritual warfare comes in. Satan wants you to believe you are powerless, you are defeated. He wants you to believe the doctor’s report that you have clinical depression. You can believe that if you want, and that’s what you will have. Or you can reject it and fight it in the name of Jesus.

Here are the two most often quoted scripture regarding our responsibilities as Christians in spiritual warfare:

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, 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. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 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… (Ephesians 6:10-17)

3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, 5 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, 6 and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled. (II Corinthians 10:3-6)

So the first thing you need to do is get into the mental exercise, the mental discipline to start rejecting the negative thoughts because those thoughts and words come from Satan. If God has something correctional to tell you or teach you, He does it in a non-condemning way. Fear and guilt and condemnation come from Satan, not from God.

So the first exercise is to start saying, “I rebuke or reject that thought in the name of Jesus” and then you replace that thought with a scripture like, “My God will supply all my needs according to His riches in Glory by Christ Jesus!” (Phil. 4:19). This might be used, for example, if a fear comes over you that you cannot make the car payment or something like that.

Another example might be the doctor’s report of your clinical depression. “I reject that in the name of Jesus. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind!” (2 Tim. 1:7)

Another example might be anxiety over some other problem. Satan comes to give you the bad news. You say, “Satan I rebuke you in the name of Jesus. The Lord God Most High is my Rock, my fortress, my shield, my deliverer. I abide under the shadow of the Almighty and I rest under the shadow of his wings. He’s my provider, my comforter, my shelter from the storm and my shade from the heat.” (Psalms)

And so forth and so on. You make this a HABIT EVERY DAY OF YOUR LIFE. You do NOT let Satan defeat you in your private thought life.

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. (Phil. 4:8)

The next thing you do is study, memorize, understand and work the following scripture. I found this commentary on a blog (and I agree with it):

And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. (Matthew 16:19)

Now looking at this in the context written we see that Jesus was not just speaking to Peter but to the entire Church Body at this point. When he says “whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven”, He reveals to us (the church) that we are the connecting bridge between Heaven and Earth…not just heaven as paradise but when he compares Heaven to Earth, He is comparing the spiritual realm to the physical. We are responsible for bringing the kingdom of God to the Earth. Hence, why He entrusted us with the “keys.” And what exactly do keys do? They lock and unlock (bind and loose). The word for bound in this passage is the word deo in Greek. Meaning in this context, “to pronounce or determine.” This, to me, doesn’t sound passive. Not something that is just automatically happening because we exist, but something that we must do…a verb.

When we pronounce to bind things on earth (i.e. disease, demons, depression, etc.) they are also “pronounced” and bound in heaven (or in the spirit). The word loose in this passage is the Greek word luo. Meaning the direct opposite of deo, and to pronounce or determine, not to be bound. So when we pronounce to loose things on earth (i.e. addictions, demonic influences, spirits of infirmities etc.) they are also pronounced and loosed in heaven (or the spirit). We are the bridge between Earth and God, just as Jesus was. This passage clearly directs us as Christians to be Christ’s hands and feet, and voice, here on earth. We now must act on it. Bind (deo) and loose (luo) are both verbs. Meaning we have to do something in order for them to take place. People aren’t just gonna be set free from addictions, and demons aren’t going to be silenced simply because we are AROUND them. Jesus’ name is powerful! It is our weapon and strength as a Church. USE IT!

We have to take action. We have to bind evil spirits and loose the Spirits of God in our lives. Get your head into the war against Satan because you’re in it whether you know it or not or like it or not.

Father, I pray in the name of Jesus, that for my friend and for whoever else reads this writing, that the word of God will cut them to the core and they will hear the Holy Spirit speaking to them that it’s time to take action – to be transformed by the renewing of their mind. To call upon the God of Heaven and Earth to help equip them for battle and not be afraid to fight the enemy. I pray for boldness like a lion. Amen.

Truth or Consequences?

Truth or Consequences?

As deliverance ministers, Mitsi and I ponder and discuss a number of things we see as life unfolds. A recent topic of discussion was this: the way the people of the Bible thought (those being of primarily Hebrew or Semitic descent) vs. the way most modern Americans think. Let’s classify this generally as Eastern vs. Western thinking.

The way most Americans think is by and large a product of the Greek empire. From Wikipedia:

Classical Greek culture had a powerful influence on the Roman Empire, which carried a version of it to many parts of the Mediterranean region and Europe, for which reason Classical Greece is generally considered to be the seminal culture which provided the foundation of Western civilization.

The Greek world is widely regarded as having given birth to scientific thought by means of observation, thought, and development of a theory without the intervention of a supernatural force. Thales, Anaximander and Democritus were amongst those contributing significantly to the establishment of this tradition*. It is also, and perhaps more commonly in the western imagination, identified with the dawn of Western Philosophy, as well as a mapping out of the Natural Sciences.

*He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: ” ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.’ You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men.” (Isaiah 7:6-8)

While I believe the Greeks contributed immensely to the world for our benefit, one thing they overshadowed in their pursuit of knowledge and understanding is the belief in the unseen, the spiritual, the supernatural. In a nutshell they believed that if you can’t prove it through science, then it doesn’t exist. That philosophy has carried over through the centuries to our modern-day Americans, even those who believe in the unseen God of the Bible (Christians and Jews).

Because of this style of thinking, I find it sad when I see people who do not connect the bad things that happen in their lives as consequences of their beliefs, behaviors and decisions, and also a as a consequence of their ancestors’ beliefs, behaviors and decisions (I’ll explain this in a moment). I am not saying that everything “bad” that happens in one’s life is a consequence of beliefs, behaviors and decisions, but I would say we have found in our ministry and from our study of the Bible that a huge part of it is.

Eastern Thinking vs. Western Thinking

In contrast to Western thinking, take Biblical Eastern thinking examples:

Later, Jesus went to Jerusalem for another Jewish festival. In the city near the sheep gate was a pool with five porches, and its name in Hebrew was Bethzatha. Many sick, blind, lame, and crippled people were lying close to the pool. Beside the pool was a man who had been sick for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw the man and realized that he had been crippled for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to be healed?” The man answered, “Lord, I don’t have anyone to put me in the pool when the water is stirred up. I try to get in, but someone else always gets there first.” Jesus told him, “Pick up your mat and walk!” Right then the man was healed. He picked up his mat and started walking around. The day on which this happened was a Sabbath. When the Jewish leaders saw the man carrying his mat, they said to him, “This is the Sabbath! No one is allowed to carry a mat on the Sabbath.” But he replied, “The man who healed me told me to pick up my mat and walk.” They asked him, “Who is this man that told you to pick up your mat and walk?But he did not know who Jesus was, and Jesus had left because of the crowd. Later, Jesus met the man in the temple and told him, “You are now well. But don’t sin anymore or something worse might happen to you.” (John 5:1-14)

Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him. (John 9:1-3)

But there was a certain man called Simon, who previously practiced sorcery in the city and astonished the people of Samaria, claiming that he was someone great, to whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, “This man is the great power of God.” And they heeded him because he had astonished them with his sorceries for a long time. But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized. Then Simon himself also believed; and when he was baptized he continued with Philip, and was amazed, seeing the miracles and signs which were done. Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit. For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. And when Simon saw that through the laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money, saying, “Give me this power also, that anyone on whom I lay hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” But Peter said to him, “Your money perish with you, (this is a CURSE) because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money! You have neither part nor portion in this matter, for your heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this your wickedness, and pray God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you. For I see that you are poisoned by bitterness and bound by iniquity.” Then Simon answered and said, “Pray to the Lord for me, that none of the things which you have spoken may come upon me.” (Acts 8:9-24)

Are you seeing the connections between sin and the outcome, between choosing evil and the consequences? That’s what most Western thinkers DO NOT SEE. They are blind, as the Bible says. They don’t see that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction–but not just in science.

The Hebrews knew that there were consequences for sin. A westerner might think this way: “Oh, if my wife catches me cheating on her, there will be hell to pay.” The connection is that there will be hell to pay from the wife, but how about from God? How about something less obvious: if someone exhibits regularly boorish behavior such as swearing like a sailor, drinking too much, cutting people off on the freeway and flipping them off, cheating on their taxes, stealing office supplies, etc. etc. will something “bad” happen in their lives that they never connect to the consequences of this lifestyle and their sinning? Here’s what God says:

Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. People reap what they sow. Those who sow to please their sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; those who sow to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. (Galations 6:7-8)

The words we choose to speak are spiritual and have consequences.

Notice in the Acts passage that the former sorcerer, Simon, who became a Christian erroneously believed he could buy the power of God with money, and Peter spoke a curse over him. Simon not only did not dismiss the curse—as just about every American I know would have, believing that curses are not real—but he also begged Peter to reverse the curse by praying for him. As a professional sorcerer, Simon knew that curses were real things and really worked to achieve their end, because apparently we can infer that he made a lot of money by placing curses on people and working witchcraft.

This belief in curses is lost in American society today because of Greek, western thinking. But did you know the word curse is found in the King James version of the Bible over 160 times? We always say if you feel like you’re “cursed”, you probably are.

Most Western Christians dismiss curses by using this scripture:

Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”), that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. (Galations 3:13-14)

We agree with this scripture, and that’s why we can break curses and cast out the demons that came to work the curse to the person’s destruction. The breaking of the curse is not automatic, as most Christians erroneously believe, just like being saved is not automatic. You have to do something to be saved: you have to confess with your mouth and believe in your heart (Romans 10:9). Likewise, you have to do something to reverse a curse.

Sins of the Fathers

Take the passage above from John 9. This is another way of thinking that has been completely lost in most of America’s churches: that the sins of our ancestors pass down to those living if they are not repented of. This concept was really hard for me to grasp for a while, but there it is right there in the Commandment #2:

You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea. You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject me. But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love me and obey my commands. (Exodus 20:4-5)

Once I started pondering and meditating upon this, I started seeing patterns in families—horrible patterns. Many times you’ll see children of alcoholics are alcoholics; children of abusers are abusers; children who come from uneducated people stay uneducated; children who come from poverty stay in poverty.

You might attribute these to social behaviors. But you will also see patterns of sickness and disease that run through families that are ghastly. Doctors might blame it on “bad genes”. I’m saying it could be “bad spirits”, because whatever is happening in the unseen spiritual world around us affects the seen physical world. (Remember, Spirit created matter, not the other way around. So Spirit has a higher influence than matter.)

Here are two examples of what I am talking about:

I know one man who married a woman whose (1) mother had breast cancer; (2) older sister had MS and died; (3) daughter had Crohn’s Disease; (4) son had ADHD and had a hard time in school; (5) twin sister had ovarian cancer; (6) then she herself got breast cancer. And you want to blame all this on bad genes? I mean, how bad can genes be?? There has to be another explanation. These are good people.

I know another man who married a woman whose brother and sister-in-law BOTH got cancer (different types) and died young leaving behind several young children to this man’s care. Then this man got colon cancer (fortunately caught it early). Now he and his wife are BOTH unemployed and have been for some time (both of them regularly go through periods of unemployment) and now his wife is diagnosed with MS. Again, how many bad things can happen to good people?

I know yet another family: The father died of colon cancer. The mother died suddenly and unexpectedly from complications from a blood thinner she was taking combined with an upper respiratory infection she got from fatigue after helping her son plan his wedding – she died just a couple of weeks after he wed. A couple of years later–and not yet 30 years old –he came down with Hodgkins Lymphoma, went through all the treatments, was pronounced cancer-free, started having headaches a couple of weeks later, and they found a tumor at the base of his brain. He went through all kinds of awful treatments again, had to go into rehab to re-learn to walk and talk again. As of this writing he is recovering, after much prayer. But I mean, this young man is one of the nicest, most polite, well-raised, intelligent people I have ever known. His poor sister has been a basket case of worry. There has to be a curse of death running in that family. But they are all Catholics, so it’s difficult to teach them any of these things – paradigms run deep.

I propose the sins of the fathers might have something to do with all this calamity. If you think about how many generations four generations back is, these are your great-great-grandparents. Did we even know them? How do we know whether they did sinful things to bring curses down the line to innocent people? Yet God says, hey folks, this is the way it works – you bear the consequences for the sins of your ancestors. I made a way out for you through Jesus. But you have to take the appropriate action if you want your liberty. Don’t just sit there – do something!

Other Eastern Thinking

Now you might be thinking, “Oh, those silly Hebrews, they were so primitive in their thinking, so uneducated, soooo ancient in their ways. We are so enlightened today. We are so advanced compared to what they had to work with back then – oh, hold on, I have a text on my iPhone.”

Well, I’ve got news for you. Like Solomon said, there’s nothing new under the sun (Ecc. 1:9). Just look at all the “Eastern ways*” that have invaded our American society. Acupuncture, yoga, transcendental meditation, reflexology, palm reading, tarot card reading, horoscopes and so, so much more. All these things came from eastern pagan religions and spiritual practices, and yet glib Americans just flutter to them like a moth to a flame, not realizing they are going to get burned. Americans will agree they work and they have a vague understanding that there is something spiritual behind these things, but yet they reject the Hebrew way of spiritual thinking. Consequences, consequences.

*Isaiah 2:6 For You (God) have forsaken Your people (Jews and Christians), the house of Jacob, Because they are filled with eastern ways; They are soothsayers like the Philistines, And they are pleased with the children of foreigners.

Final Thoughts

So I’m just stating this argument in hopes that someone will meditate on these thoughts and consider whether this is truth. See if you can hear the Holy Spirit say to you, “This is truth!” The purpose of this article is to help you in your spiritual walk, not to judge or condemn.

I will end with one last sad and sobering thought.

In our ministry over many years we have run across a number of Christians—both leaders and laity–who completely reject the deliverance ministry. I’m often surprised when “mature” Christians reject our message because I would have thought the Word of God was second nature to them. I mean the Bible says Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil (I John 3:8). And he told his disciples (that includes us) things like, “cast out demons” (Matthew 10:8) and “I give you the power to tread on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy and nothing shall by any means harm you” (Luke 10:19), etc. So if you reject those words, then are you rejecting Jesus’ work and mission and purpose? Whose side are you on, anyway?

Many times the rejection is quite vocal and strong. Clearly to us, the demons in that person have really got a grip on them. It’s probably due to the fear in the demons of being kicked out of their dwelling that causes the reactions in the people that are so violent. It’s unfortunate for them, because it empowers their demons to deceive them to the truth even more, which may lead to their destruction.

We have seen a pattern of the consequences among people we have tried to talk to about deliverance who reject us so dramatically, and it’s not good. We have seen a number of clergy and other Christians who have really fallen into the hands of Satan’s destruction. We do not have an explanation for why the punishment is so severe – only the Lord knows. But here is what we can tell you:

If a Christian tries to present you with a new idea or a new teaching that does not fit into your paradigm or your “box”, do your best to hear them out. Judge what they are saying against the Word of God like the Bereans in Acts 17:11. (If you don’t know the Word of God, that’s the first thing you need to fix.) So one of two things is going to happen: either this new teaching is a lie or it’s the truth, and you just may not know about it, never been taught it, never had it revealed to you before. (It really helps to be baptized in the Holy Spirit, who is the “helper”, and will help you discern truth and lies.) And it may help you, and it may be God trying to get through to you through one is His children who hears Him better than you do. I leave you with one last scripture – one more piece of advice from Ecclesiastes 5:2:

Do not be rash with your mouth, And let not your heart utter anything hastily before God. For God is in heaven, and you on earth; Therefore let your words be few.

Moving The Boundary Stones

Moving The Boundary Stones

The leaders of Judah are like men who move boundary stones; I will pour my fury out upon them like water. (Hosea 5:10)

The leaders referred to in the book of Hosea, men called by God to teach His people where His established boundaries were, were “like men who move boundary stones” in God’s eyes. In the time of the writing of Hosea, stones were used to mark the boundaries of someone’s land, much like fences are used today around our home’s lot lines or to fence a ranch in. Back in the day, men moved boundary stones to enlarge their land holdings illegally, much like moving a fence in the middle of the night to take someone’s land without their knowledge and enlarge yours. The leaders of Judah were like those men, moving God’s boundaries illegally through false teachings.

A generation of leaders move the boundary stones out, and the next generation moves them out even farther.

Emperor Constantine was not a leader of Judah but of the Romans and the Roman Catholic religion. He appropriated the Judeo-Christian religion of his time and celebrated it with an orgy of boundary stone-moving.

One of the boundary stones moved was the fourth Commandment, the observing of the Sabbath, which was changed to Sunday. Sunday was the Roman pagan religion day of worship of the sun god. Thus the name Sun-day.

Another boundary stone he moved was the second Commandment. The Romans worshipped a multitude of gods, whom they represented with images of marble and stone and with paintings. Constantine had the genial idea of integrating the statues venerated by the Romans with the memory of the dead saints, changing the names of the statues to the names of the saints. This is called syncretism (the combination of different forms of belief or practice). An example is the statue of Saint Peter in the Vatican, whose right toes are worn down because of being kissed constantly by the Catholic worshipers. If I remember correctly, it was originally the statue of Zeus/Jupiter, the main god of the Roman and Greek pagan religions.

Constantine presided over the first general Council of the Roman Catholic Church in Nicaea, so he can be considered the first Pope (Peter was never a Pope). Every council held moved more boundaries.

The leaders of Judah had also moved the stones of the first and second commandment:

My people consult their piece of wood, their diviner’s wand speaks to them; for the spirit of whoring makes them err, they go off whoring deserting their God. (Hosea 4:12 CJB)

Since Israel was married to God, the Lord considered their idolatry unfaithfulness, whoring. However, Constantine made idolatry official and blessed in the Judeo-Christian community.

Today the protestant and evangelical communities move boundary stones also. At some point in history someone–maybe Constantine–decided that the Old Testament teachings do not apply today. The teaching of today is that we are under the blood, so we can do whatever we want to do. These teachers claim that God the Father looks at us through the blood of the Son and thus cannot see the sins in us, and so, we are home free.

Most Christians fear and obey the laws of men more than they do the laws of God. They see tangible punishment when the laws of men are broken, but they don’t see immediate punishment when they break God’s laws, so they go along with the teaching. Christians are law-abiding citizens when it concerns the laws of men.

However, disobeying the laws of God brings immediate spiritual punishment, which later becomes physical distress of different kinds. Under this torment, the people of God blame Satan, and they are only partially right. They should blame themselves also.

When a person moves a boundary stone set by God, a demon receives a legal right to enter that person, and his work begins immediately. First, he works on the mind of the transgressor, speaking to it through thoughts and ideas, and making the person believe lies which may motivate him or her to sin even more. Doors are opened to other demons that will work in different areas of the life of the person. Thus diseases, troubles and poverty might overcome the person. God allows this because the person moved the boundary stone.

A truth has been stretched. A lie has been believed. A law has been broken. Legal rights were received by the demon, and he made use of them.

I have heard leaders tweaking the laws. Just pushing a stone an inch or two. Moving boundaries, increasing their activity arena for themselves and for their sheep. Not comfortable with the boundaries? Easily solved, move the stones!

Go in through the narrow gate; for the gate that leads to destruction is wide and the road broad, and many travel it; But it is a narrow gate and a hard road that leads to life, and only a few find it. (Matthew 7:13,14 CJB)