Consider reading my new book DISCERNING SPIRITS: Visionary Gifts in Practice.

It is sad that we have so little Biblical teaching today about the unseen world.  In the ancient world no one ever doubted that demons existed and that these entities hated mankind.  A common belief of many pastors in this country is that demons and demonic harassment happens in other countries, but not here in the United States.  The fact is we've always had these battles, because satan and those that worship satan, via many false religious systems are prevalent everywhere.  The United States lost significant protection when partial birth abortion was made legal and the vast majority of our religious leaders failed to speak out; being a proactive, activist, caustic agent for what is godly across all denominational divides. 
Here is a verse often quoted, but too often with the salient point omitted.  My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.  Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being My priest.  Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children (Hosea 4: 6). 

All Christians have spiritual gifts and in the context of these gifts we are called to be the hands and feet of Jesus Christ to a dying world.  This can't happen unless we embrace truth... learning more about our position in Christ as agents for salt and light.    

INSERT: I wrote my newest book, Discerning Spirits: Visionary Gifts in Practice (May 2013) for those who are called to "set the captives free," via a  healing and deliverance ministry. I also wrote it for church leaders that may be helped by a simple overview of what deliverance is and is not.  The Biblical response against occult and pagan constructs assaulting families and culture. 

Believers can decide to be more fully engaged; equipped to fight battles in the unseen realm where prayer impacts outcome. How our words are used, informed by knowledge of God's word as we stand in the assurance of our position in Christ, changes destiny. In Christ, with our sins confessed, daily in His word, obedient to His laws, we have power to overcome in any circumstance.  It is sad that in our advanced state too many have forgotten the old paths, the true path were spiritual power rests.  

Crucial to embrace is to pray the power of the blood of Christ as both a protective covering and salient armor; the most noticeable tool in spiritual warfare and one that is ours by God's grace.  We are purified by the blood of Jesus Christ - Hebrews 9:14.  By the blood, in Jesus we have redemption; have been redeemed - Ephesians 1: 7, 8a.  Additionally, by the blood of Jesus we are ransomed and, I might add, repeatedly rescued.  Worthy are You (Jesus Christ) to take the book and break its seals; for You were slain and purchased for God with your Blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.  You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will rein upon the earth (Revelation 5: 9). 

We learn so much about God's faithfulness and character as we study.  Although we are no longer under legalism, but under a covenant of grace, this very grace compels us to grow toward obedience. Jesus said: These are my words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled (Luke 24: 44). 

Paul writes: And now that you have found God (or should I say, now that God has found you,) why do you want to go back again and become slaves once more to the weak and useless spiritual powers of this world (Galatians 4: 9).

If I could give any advice to those who want to embrace prayer and deliverance as a ministry it would be to read scripture and believe His word simply for what it says.  Forget the societal and denominational bias that seeks to rob too many believers of health and significance. 

I don't consider myself a paranormal investigator.  I have no doubt that demons and spirit entities, including angels are among us.  I will very rarely go to a home or place where people do not claim to know Christ. So...  Rather I consider myself a  paranormal interventionist. What I'm looking to understand in the investigative stage of the work is how the haunting or demonic harassment may have been introduced. Satan gains a legal foothold in a persons life via sin.  Sin that includes pagan practises invite demonic entities to step out of the shadows in even greater force.  Our tools of opposition center in four areas.  The Blood of Jesus Christ by which we are saved, redeemed, empowered.  The fire of the Holy Spirit which will burn and consign demons and evil spirits to the abyss. We can ask for this early assignment of demons to the abyss, taking them out of action, because God has already judged demons and evil spirits.  We are within the will of Father-God when we use strong words in offense - never a defense nebulous manner.  "Lord Jesus send these demons to the abyss, never to be heard from again.  Burn with the fire of the Holy Spirit all backups and replacements that seek to supplant what you've already delivered."  The fire and brimstone from Father God; His judgment and not ours.  And finally angels... Pray that Angels have victory in the unseen realms of those places and circumstances you've lifted up in prayer.  Therefore, since we have confidence to enter the Holy place by the blood of Jesus (Hebrews 10: 19).  Enter that place of intercessory prayer with the full confidence of what Christ has done for you. 

I see my role as being able, by God's grace, to discern the nuances that inform how we will pray.   The atmosphere of a place as being benign or unsafe.  And then, through interviews and what the Holy Spirit imparts, how the infestation happened to have legal access.  Many discern the actual spirits that are attacking and harassing people. Perhaps because God has called me more to places then people, I'm not all that interested in the details.  I'm more focused on the big picture of what is presenting which is why I am not an exorcist; a different gift set.  This gift of discerning spirits is linked to a supernaturally imparted knowledge about these entities which comes via the Holy Spirit.  This is not an infallible gift.  People can be wrong and for this reason we need each other.  What we are seeking is God's wisdom, His impartation.  

After I trusted Christ there began a process of maturing in Him... a process that doesn't stop.  Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them (Hebrews 7: 25).  Jesus said: "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand (John 10: 29).   I love those words.  When I enter an unsafe place I imagine myself as being secure in His hand.  

My task is to keep it straightforward and Bible-centered.  Why?  Because too easily I can get in God's way.  In Acts 16: 16-18 we see that Paul has kept it simple. Luke tells us that a slave girl who was possessed and had a spirit of divination was following them about.  She had brought her masters "much profit by her fortune-telling."  As she followed Paul, Luke and other believers through the city, harassing and calling attention in a way that was disruptive to the mission, Paul took a stand.  I'm sure that Paul had been praying for this poor girl.  Notice that his anger is in no way directed at the victim. Her deliverance is an act of mercy and compassion.  Rather Paul's assertive focus is directed at the agent of bondage; the evil spirit(s).  She continued doing this for many days.  But Paul was greatly annoyed, and turned and said to the spirit, "I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her!" And it came out at that very moment (Acts 16: 18).       

When we pray demons from places or people; when we pray healing and deliverance we stand on God's word as our only authority.  If we don't read His word, or know His word how can God use us?  Are you praying for a lost child or loved one?  Someone trapped in sin?  Someone whose loss of presence you grieve or who is suffering physical pain and illness?  It is a lie of satan that we must accept this.  Begin praying scripture back to God.  Step into the power He gave you as His child; adopted into His family.  Remind Jesus of His promises; all yes and amen. (Psalm 91, 103, 51, 35, 23.)    

Invoke the name of Jesus Christ in all that awe and reverence can supply.  (Philippians 2: 5-11; John 14: 12-15; Matthew 18: 18-20; Matthew 16: 18-19).  God gives us authority over the unseen world.  

The place that we are currently situated in prophetic history means that there are more human spirits attacking believers today. They are what I call ambulatory possessed in the vein of Judas and have at their disposal certain preternatural tools. These people are under assignment to especially target family members of believers, pastors, and missionaries.  These human spirits are under specific satanic-assignment to keep many in bondage.  If you are engaged in intercession and deliverance ask Jesus if there is a human spirit in the picture.  If He replies "yes," pray that this human spirit be forever bound back to his/her body. Ask if this person's name is found written in the Lambs Book of Life.  If it is, pray that they be saved through faith in Jesus Christ now rather than later.  I like to pray that God will strip away all the satisfaction that comes from assaulting victims with evil agendas.  Pray that the Holy Spirit will send faithful believers to reach out to this person, letting them know that they can be forgiven and healed.  If it comes to you that this person's name is not written in the Lambs Book of Life, take a stand. Pray that this person be immediately and permanently judged and prevented from hurting all other human beings and that any demons operating through this person be immediately judged; cast into the abyss, never to be heard from again. 

Words matter.  Don't take a defense-posture. Be specific in your language quoting scripture as prayer. We know that demons do sometimes return. Focus your words on the circumstances and the heart-felt awareness that God has allowed to inform insight and guidance. Do not pray generally against strongholds, but against the strongholds that you've been assigned authority via experience, empathy, involvement... or a prayer assignment.  You received a spiritual postcard (trouble coming).  The signs are there (pay attention).  Crisis erupts (opportunity, not victim-hood).  This is where the bulk of your authority rests; whether political, personal, spiritual, with micro or macro impact.  Why?  Because God has allowed this painful awareness, loss, or crisis to touch your life.  The intention of Jesus Christ is victory and never defeat.  And if, for example God is calling you to pray against human trafficking look at that issue in the specific context of where you live.  Find a way to get involved. 

When we do this work... and oh, it is glorious to be used by Christ, we don't stand in flimsy slippers on unsettled ground.  But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to the myriads of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel (Hebrews 12: 21-24).  

Can you get your brain around this verse? I like to meditate on this verse knowing I won't fully understand until I'm home in heaven. Know that when we pray, prayed up and confessed, committed to His word as a living, vital entity, this is where we stand; Mount Zion. The city of the living God. The heavenly home; our destiny.   He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood and His name is called The Word of God (Revelation 19: 13).   

Behold I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing will injure you.  Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are recorded in heaven (Luke 10: 19, 20).  Also Mark 16: 17, 18.  

 I'm always concerned and feel compassion for how an individual or a family may be impacted and what secrets, choices, or history have made some individuals more vulnerable than others to demonic attachment. I want to see people free and healed of any residual affects of such bondage.  Even after a location is cleansed there is a need for aftercare; the ministry of a church body under the leadership of a godly Pastor-Teacher. Preternatural encounters alter fundamental perspectives. Working through certain challenges is often, by God's will, a process that engenders spiritual growth and for this reason healing is not always instantaneous.  When one is healed and freed there is profound gratitude.  This thankfulness invites us to experience God on a more personal plane of interaction. 

Sometimes people are targeted for no reason we can understand. Unsuspecting people may move to a house or find themselves in a situation or a place they would not have knowingly chosen. They are stuck and scared and don't have the tools to fight a preternatural infestation or a series of attacks without help.  Additionally, Christian men and women committed to righteousness often experience opposition and become mature in their faith as they identify and fight these battles.  Addicts in our lives carry with them a whole host of demonic entities and should not be ignored or allowed to endanger others and especially younger siblings. 

What is often not talked of is what happens when our paths intersect through experience with a truly evil personality... someone who is ambulatory possessed and, or, fatally possessed. Victims of crime and their family members and loved ones are sometimes left to deal with the lingering, demonic affects of such an encounter.  Because victims may not recognize the preternatural impact manifesting through nightmares, panic attacks etc..  it is here where a loving church body so beautifully steps in.  In aftercare those with a special gift for counseling through friendship, mercy and simple acts of hospitality play a significant role. Sometimes in such an effortless way that we fail and they fail to see how very valuable they are to this process.  If we don't see change, it may be that this person also needs deliverance.  And especially if God lets us see that an evil entity has attached to this family or individual through a kind of transference. 

For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins (Colossians 1: 13, 14).

The dynamics of our culture are fought over in the unseen realms.  God sent us to planet earth to live in this age.  What we see is that more and more people lapse into and embrace pagan-est amalgams of belief meaning that demonic activity proportionally increases. This is our battle ground.  Let us not forget... many of these people have been sitting in pews of sleeping Churches for decades and are now blind. They need us too.  The need for Christians and their churches to become more relevant in this area, with a firm Biblical foundation of knowledge and practical, common sense tools of response, has failed to keep pace with the societal impact of a cycling landscape.  When God takes this out of our hands, the outcome is always a significant societal correction accompanied by major world conflicts and devastation's; another blog for another time.

I'm sometimes asked if I watch one of these many television shows that send secular or occult "paranormal investigators" into a place were preternatural evidence suggests demonic activity or harassment. The answer is, no, I do not.  I have no curiosity about this topic, but rather an aversion.  Jesus Christ, my Savior and King, is gracious to supply what I need when I stay centered in His word.  That said, when I'm asked to pray cleansing over a place, as part of the interview process, I'll ask the homeowners what television shows they are watching.  I want to see the movie collection.  If teenagers are in the home what music celebrating the denigration of women.  Violence, pornographic materials, drug use...  And sadly I often find demonically centered, violent media... watched over and over again and not monitored failing to protect young minds.  Pieces of the puzzle show us how and why satan felt it had legal authority, given over by human beings, to send a demonic infestation into a place. And which sometimes lingers to impact the next innocent resident.  

I write about a haunted location in Wood's End. Why? Because places and things may and sometimes do carry the stamp; the lingering imprint of the demonic.  Recognizing this is why God has equipped some believers to work in this area. With the rising incidence of addiction these strongholds are more often encountered by families.  Through the story in Wood's End I hope I've informed a solution; not writing so much to Christian brothers and sisters who understand this... Rather to those that seek Jesus Christ as the solution in a practical and common sense context; many conditioned to believe they can never be forgiven.    

There are examples in scripture that tell us about places and things that have been preternaturally corrupted by ongoing and lingering demonic attachments.  I like the straightforward simplicity of Jude, verse 23. others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy mixed with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.      

To the question I'm sometimes asked by readers of Wood's End...  No. I am not a paranormal investigator. All believers are called to a ministry of Intercession and Faith and may have a certain area that God has called them to lift up as a ministry before the throne of God.  I stand in good company with them as a preternatural interventionist; a broad term.  

Because the need is growing, as the Church-Age draws to a close, I am certain that God is raising up more and more people to embrace prayer as a special calling.  Maranatha! 

After the Bible, the living word of God... I recommend: Prayer by, Andrew Murray.  Pastor Mark Calhoun once asked Elizabeth Eliot what Christian authors she read.  Elizabeth said, "I like the dead ones." Of course she meant those saints that lived in earlier centuries and have now gone home to glory. There is something to be said about those books written absent the constant barrage of noise and stimulus from multiple, intrusive, techno temptations and sources...  These brothers and sisters heard God in ways that fasting the culture could restore to us. When I was writing a screen play on the life of Saint Patrick I did research of that time period in the 4th century; the desire and attraction for so many saints to carve out for themselves a monastic life style; reflection, study, and prayer. Another age, another time.    

For more detail on this topic order Discerning Spirits: Visionary Gifts in Practice.  For download 2.99, on Kindle or Nook and with the Soft cover at Amazon: 12.00.   

Read my book Wood's End and share your thoughts!

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  1. Well, that was interesting. Paranormal or metaphysical, or spiritual?

  2. Thanks for your comment. And I would say; all of the above.


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