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Spiritual Warfare in San Francisco (Part 5)

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)

Because of space-time continuum thinking, it’s hard to wrap our minds around the simple truth that God, the Son, and the Holy Spirit never had a beginning. They always were and always will be.

This simple truth is the foundation for all of our Christian faith and belief in God. It is one which cannot be partially accepted, but must be believed in whole, in order for us to have a vibrant faith in God. Anything less than 100% on this truth will create doubts which will limit the work of God in our lives.

Okay, assuming we all accept this simple truth, how did God create the heavens and the earth?

   Then God said, “Let there be light; and there was light.” (Genesis 1:3)

For years, I figured God spoke His words, wiggled His nose, much like Samantha on the TV program, Bewitchedand then presto, light and all the rest of creation appeared on the scene. But there are other scriptures which give us a better glimpse of how God created the heavens and earth.

 Bless the LORD, you His angels, mighty in strength, who perform His word, obeying the voice of His word! (Psalm 103:20)

The English word angel is translated from the Hebrew word malak which actually means messenger, representative, or deputy. Therefore, God has deputy helpers who perform His words.

The Bible gives names for three angels: Gabriel, Michael, and Lucifer.

Gabriel (strength of God or warrior of God) is an archangel who was sent as a messenger with important messages for humans, such as Daniel, Zacharias (John the Baptist’s father), and Mary.

Michael (who is like God) is a chief archangel, a protector of Israel, and the leader of God’s heavenly angel army.

Lucifer (light bearer or morning star) was also a chief archangel.  In Jude 9, Michael still respected Lucifer’s high level of authority, even though he had fallen and was now known as Satan.

Okay, now let’s do some digging.

  For He has not put the world to come, of which we speak, in subjection to   angels. (Hebrews 2:5)

For whatever reasons, God set up our present world to be in subjection to angels or under an angelic form of governmental system. God created this system to be obedient to His words, but obviously, angels have a free will, much like humans do. Sadly, the system was corrupted with Adam’s fall in the Garden of Eden.

Yet, God being true to His own system had the Law brought to man under the direction of angels.

Now, the idea of creating man and man’s home here on earth was always in God’s heart. It was His highest priority as He longed to share His love and fellowship with other beings. And it’s only natural to assume that His angels all knew about the importance of earth and how a being called man would eventually fit into God’s plan for His kingdom on earth.

So, who did God choose to be His chief angel over earth?

You [Satan] were in Eden, the garden of God… (Ezekiel 28:13)

You [Satan] were the anointed cherub who covers, and I placed you there. You        were on the holy mountain of God; you walked in the midst of the stones of fire.       (Ezekiel 28:14)

Eden, the garden of God, and the holy mountain of God were located here on earth, not in heaven. Thus, it is my belief that Lucifer (Satan) was chosen by God to be the head angel, or His chief ambassador, here on earth. If so, this means Satan was actually created to be a chief helper and a minister to us humans, not our accuser and destroyer.

But Lucifer (Satan) was proud of his authority over earth and wanted to exalt his throne over all of all the other angels and also to be like the Most High God. Then because of Satan’s iniquity, war broke out in heaven. This war continues today, but it will not be until the last days that Michael and the good angels will drive Satan and his horde (a third of all the angels) out of heavenly realms.

Who were Satan’s angels?

Most likely, Satan’s angels were those he had authority over here on earth when he was God’s amabassador. Later, Paul referred to a part of Satan’s fallen angel horde as principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this age, spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Keep in mind: Satan is not a creator. He is a liar, a deceiver, and a usurper of God’s creation and His plans.

Thus, when Eve was deceived and Adam sinned in the Garden of EdenGod’s authority to rule on earth passed from man to the fallen angel, Satan. He became the god of this world.

And because Satan had authority on earth and in the heavens surrounding earth, Satan’s angels replaced God’s angels in the spiritual governmental system reigning over earth. Satan’s angels were already trained from their earlier experiences, but instead of obeying God, these fallen angels now obeyed the father of lies, Satan.

The bad news is that we are stuck with this corrupted angelic system until Jesus returns. But the good news is we have a new spiritual governmental system on earth, not subjected to angels. It is the Kingdom of God.

Are you scratching your heads and wondering what this has to do with San Francisco?

(Continued in Part 6…the full series to date  can be read here.

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Spiritual Warfare in San Francisco (Part 4)

He pointed down again.

“Look.”

There just below us, was a student resembling a fluorescent light bulb walking across the esplanade. She lit up the whole area around her as she hurried on her way. Unlike the others, she did not have a creature sitting on her shoulder, but instead, one hovered around her head, trying to alight on her, but for some reason, the creature could not land. Deep frustration etched a gully in the creature’s face.

“Listen,” said the angel.

My ears adjusted themselves to only listening to the girl. Her footsteps and the movement of her arms came through loud and clear, but also something else.

“Dee, dee, bah, bah, hooka mah hundae,” she whispered over and over.

She spoke in tongues as she walked along.

“Your message to Christians on college campuses is very simple,” said the angel. “It’s the same one Paul gave to the believers in Ephesus when he said, ‘Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, with all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.” Then he added, “In case you have forgotten, these scriptures are located in Ephesians 6: 17-18.”

It bugged me he knew I had not read my Bible for years. What else did he know?

He grabbed my ponytail and took off. We retraced our flight to the apartment where we landed in the kitchen, back where this began forty minutes earlier. We stood there, staring at each other. Neither of us spoke for a minute or so.

“Today, you’ll begin your journey as a prophet, a bondservant of Christ. You will prophesy, proclaiming the words the Lord gives you. You will speak in tongues like you have never spoken before in your spiritual life. No more baby tongues for you, but your strongest gift will be distinguishing of spirits. You will see into the spirit realm.”

Talk about a person’s life being turned upside down and shredded into pieces, it happened to me right then and there. I was a contented progressive Christian who had turned his back on Charismatic mumble-jumble years earlier and now, I was about to drown in a sea of spiritual gifts.

“But how? Amanda. My job. My Berkeley buddies. My life. This destroys me, doesn’t it?” I screamed in anger, not caring what he thought.

“The Lord’s grace will be more than sufficient for you. The Spirit of the Lord is about to descend on you, anointing you for the mission ahead.”

Those were the last words I remembered hearing before falling to the floor. I was out.

(Excerpt from Deceived Dead and Delivered by Larry Nevenhoven, © 2013, Amazon eBook)

(Continued in Part 5…the full series to date  can be read here.)

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Spiritual Warfare in San Francisco (Part 3)

I finished studying at 9 p.m. and went into the kitchen for a drink of water. As I turned on the recessed ceiling lights, I stopped dead in my tracks. A grotesque creature sat on a stool at the island counter. If the angel was the epitome of the Kingdom of Light, then this being was the dark side’s counterpart. Its gloomy eyes glared at me while its lips formed a sneer. Festering sores plastered the being’s face and neck. A filthy robe cloaked its torso and a stench of decay clogged my nostrils.

“Listen up Chuck,” the creature said in a raspy voice.

Fear struck my chest like a baseball bat. I had trouble breathing. Confusion settled over me like a morning fog. I could not put two and two together.

“If you go to businessmen and tell them to pray over their financial gifts, seeking the Lord where they should give their money, some bad things will happen to your family. Your two sons will die in an auto accident and your wife will go insane. Do you hear me?”

I could not speak as my mouth went dry and a throbbing sensation sent stabs of pain through my mind.

The creature drummed its dirty two-inch long fingernails on the granite counter. The beat reminded me of a funeral march.

“I said, ‘Do you hear me?’” the creature hissed out the words.

I nodded.

“And I can do it. It will be easy. Just as easy as it was for me to come into your home. No one can protect you from me, not even God!”

The creature bared its brownish-yellowish teeth with a hideous grin as it stood up.

“Don’t you ever forget what I told you, okay?”

The being walked over to the door leading out to the deck, then without opening the door, he stepped through it, and left.

I collapsed on the floor and wept. My body convulsed in fear.

“Oh God! What have I done to my family?” I screamed.

 

Afterward, I pulled myself together and wandered into the family room, collapsing on the sofa. What is going on? I thought. Everything is hitting me at once. What can I do? My mind raced in circles searching for answers, but I found none. I finally fell asleep.

A voice visited me as I slept. Was it in a dream or a vision? It was like both, but different at the same time. I was awake, but asleep.

“Chuck,” the voice said.

I looked up and realized I stood in front of a stage in a large auditorium. It was black. None of the spotlights were turned on. The red velvet curtains were drawn apart. The voice seemed to be flowing out of the darkness blanketing the stage. I felt no fear, but was comforted by the voice.

“Yes,” I answered.

“Do you have some questions?”

“Yes.”

“Go ahead.”

“What was that being in my kitchen?”

“What do you think it was?”

“A demon.”

“Yes. That was a demon sent to frighten you by the religious ruling spirit over America.”

“But how did that happen?” I asked. “I always pray for angelic protection over me.”

“Yes, you do,” the voice said. “For just a few moments, the angels that protect you backed off their posts. When they did that, the demon slipped into your realm.”

It hit me like a hammer between the eyes. I was set up by the Lord and used as ambush bait.

“But –”

The voice interrupted me. “You have been chosen to have insight into spiritual warfare so that you can teach others. Spiritual warfare is not played on a Game Boy. It is played out in real life scenarios where lives and destinies are at stake.” The voice paused for a moment and then added, “Satan and his army want to kill Christians and their families, and destroy their destinies on the earth.”

I cringed.

“But what can I do to protect my family?”

“What does scripture say?”

Once again, the voice bounced my question back to me.

I thought for a moment before answering.

“Cast my cares on the Lord for He cares for me.”

“Yes. And don’t forget Jesus rebuked demons. He refused to allow them to speak because they are all liars. You can do the same in Jesus’ name.”

I was silent, not wanting to ask my next question.

“Can Satan and his forces really hurt my children or Dusty?”

“Yes. Rebellion and sin by you can open the gates for Satan’s army to come into your family’s lives. But by the same token, a causeless curse will not alight on you or your family. So, walk with God and avoid sin.”

The voice was silent for a moment.

“Any more questions?

“What about my problems with Dusty?”

“She is not the problem, you are. Dusty is like most women in that she desires to see her husband as a sold-out man of God, not a half-hearted pew-sitter. You obey God, follow His instructions, and she will be happy to walk by your side.”

With that answer, the voice left and I returned to my sleep.

Excerpt from Deceived Dead and Delivered by Larry Nevenhoven, © 2013, Amazon eBook)

(Continued in Part 3)

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Prayers for American Christians’ Eyes to be Opened (7/13/2017)

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The eleven supervisors sat in leather swivel-chairs down below us. Each had a laptop computer on the desk in front of them. They talked and carried on. It was the weekly San Francisco Supervisors’ meeting.

The angel turned toward me. His robe whispered softly as he pivoted around.

“Open your eyes and see,” he said with a quiet power filled with heavenly authority.

I looked down again. This time my spiritual eyes opened.

There I saw grotesque creatures sitting on the right shoulder of each of the eleven supervisors. The chimpanzee-size beings had a mixture of what looked like reptile, dragon, and wolf-like body parts with stubby tails, talons for feet, scale-covered wings, web-like hands, and misshapen faces which protruded into long snouts and were filled with sharp teeth. They resembled dingy, gray gargoyles.

Each creature held its right wing over their assigned supervisors’ eyes. Their right hands were curled into a megaphone shape so they could speak directly into the supervisors’ ears. Their left hands looped behind the supervisors’ heads and covered their left ears.

The creatures never rested. When they were not speaking into ears, they looked up, around and at each other, their heads constantly moved about, their eyes searching to and fro. They seemed to be driven by a deep dread, almost as if a cruel slave master’s power instilled a fear in them about possible future punishments.

What is this? I thought. Why am I here?

“Today is show and tell day, preparing you for your first assignment next week,” said the angel.

“First assignment, next week?”

“Quiet, I’m the teacher. You’re the student. Understand?” he whispered a stinging rebuke at me.

His voice contained no anger and love cushioned the blow, but yet, I felt the power behind the rebuke. I shuddered and nodded.

“Earlier today, you had a vision. In it, you saw yourself being used as a sword by the Lord Jesus against a brass gate. The brass gate you saw was a gate of Hell over this city. It must be attacked so the truth from heaven can be heard in San Francisco. You are His chosen weapon for the undertaking.”

I bit my tongue, but my brain continued to be plugged in. I wondered if His weapons ever suffered pain, especially with the vigorous way the Lord swung the sword against the gate. O Lord, will it hurt? I thought.

He paused a beat before continuing.

“Your spiritual eyes have been dialed up two notches, but that’s more than enough for you to get an idea of what’s happening in the Supervisors’ meeting room,” he said. “As you can see, demons sit on the supervisors’ shoulders, blocking information that is contrary to Satan’s agenda. At the same time, evil ideas are constantly spoken into the supervisors’ ears.”

He pointed a finger at me.

“Remember: our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against the hordes of Satan.”

I nodded.

He pointed at the supervisors.

“Look again.”

This time I saw words streaming through the ceiling on what looked like hologram ticker tapes carried on laser beams. These words flowed to the ears of the creatures, the supervisors, and everyone in the room. I read them: “Alternative life style.” “Pro-choice.” “Gay pride.” “Toleration.” “Christians are bigots.” “Abortion is a woman’s right.” “Separation of church and state.” “San Francisco Pride.”

With each new message, the creatures spoke into the ears of supervisors. A source from above orchestrated everything.

The angel pointed up.

“Look.”

The ceiling and roof opened up, allowing me to see into the second heaven. My eyes took a few moments adjusting to the spirit realm, but then, I saw a creature sitting on a large brass throne, blocking a portal coming out of the third heaven. Light rays attempted to flow through the portal, but only a fraction of the rays were able to pass by the large creature.

The creature’s appearance alternated between looking like a beautiful angel dressed in white and that of a gigantic monster version of the dingy, gray gargoyles, sitting on the supervisors’ shoulders. Like the smaller demons, the creature never rested. It caused fear in the hierarchy of demons below it and, at the same time, seemed fearful of its own cruel masters in the ranks above it.

The words I saw, streaming through the ceiling like hologram ticker tapes, emanated from this creature. I saw additional word streams coming out of the creature’s mouth, heading toward Sacramento, Hollywood, Washington, D. C., New York City, newspapers, television networks, movie studios, publishers, corporations, and thousands of other places.

The angel interrupted my thoughts.

“What you are seeing is the spirit of depravity. It is a ruling principality over San Francisco and guards a gate of Hell over the city. This spirit is so powerful that its wickedness is spread throughout the nation.

“The reason the spirit switches back and forth between appearances is it is creating confusion by this maneuver in the minds of people, whereby good is called evil and evil good.”

(Excerpt from Jonah by Larry Nevenhoven, © 2012, Amazon eBook)

The above is a fictional account of my best interpretation of spiritual warfare as written in the Bible.

My prayer today:

Lord, open American believers’ eyes to see that our battle is not with President Trump, Republicans, Democrats, major media, ISIS, or whoever else, but is against principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this age and spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. (Based on Ephesians 6:12)

What do you think and has the Lord spoken to you today?

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for America.

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If God Loves Us, Why Do We Still Suffer? (Part 2)

What was God thinking about when He placed Adam in the Garden of Eden? Didn’t He know that the clever serpent (Satan) would attempt to take the Kingdom away from man through deceit and spiritual warfare?

This is a plain indication of God’s righteous judgment so that you will be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which indeed you are suffering. (2 Thessalonians 1:5)

God wants royal sons and daughters who are worthy of His kingdom. He wants His royal family to learn how to trust, obey, and worship Him in all situations, but achieving this status takes time, training, and testing of our faith in Him.

For Adam and Eve, the Garden of Eden was their classroom. They were trained over a period of time, maybe even decades, and then the serpent (Satan) administered their final test to them.

Now, remember: Adam and Eve had authority to rule over everything on the earth as God’s ambassador. They could have ordered the serpent to shut up and go away, but they didn’t use their authority that day to do so. Instead, they listened, believed the serpent’s lies, and sinned.

If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. (Luke 16:10 NLT)

Because Adam was unfaithful with the handling of his authority to rule in the Garden of Eden and to keep just one commandment, Adam never received full authority to rule over the whole earth.

Therefore, Adam’s treason in the Garden resulted in his (and through his lineage all of mankind’s) spiritual death, a life apart from the Spirit of God. So, instead of being a son in the Kingdom of God with royal benefits, Adam and all the rest of mankind after him became slaves in the kingdom of darkness, under the cruel god of this world: Satan.

But even with Adam’s failure, our Father had another garden and a second Adam in mind so the Kingdom of God would eventually rule on earth.

(Excerpt from Storming the Kingdom by Larry Nevenhoven, © 2014, Amazon eBook)

The first reason why believers suffer – even though God loves us – is that we live in a fallen world because of Adam’s sin.

(Continued in Part 3)

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Prayers for America (6/8/2017)

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Many years ago, I was praying by myself at the little church I attended in Fort Dodge, Iowa. I was walking around the sanctuary and praying in the Spirit, not really focusing on any particular issue, just focusing on the Lord. A scripture somehow floated through my mind:

Be angry, and do not sin… (Ephesians 4:26)

The scripture caused me to stop walking and say, “Lord, I’ve never understood that verse. How can I possibly be angry and not sin? It looks impossible to me.”

Almost immediately, a deep anger consumed me, causing me to pray in wild and scary tongues for forty-five minutes. As I prayed, I realized that I wasn’t angry at anyone, but instead, I was angry at Satan and his wicked horde of demons.

Here’s the revelation I received that day:

Anger is a work of the flesh, and therefore, a sin — unless — it is provoked by the Holy Spirit.

My prayer today:

Lord, help American believers to be slow to anger and to be ruled by the Holy Spirit so that we can change cities and neighborhoods. (Based on Proverbs 16:32)

What do you think and has the Lord spoken to you today?

Join with me on Thursdays to fast and pray for America.

 

 

 

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Mountains Melt at the Presence of God (Part 6)

One of the great ironies of Christianity is that believers are always in His presence:

Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. (1 John 4:4)

Each believer is God’s earthly temple. We consist of a body, soul, and spirit, which is akin to the Outer Court, Inner Court, and the Holy of Holies in the Old Testament’s Temple. Just like the OT Temple, God dwells in our personal Holy of Holies or spirit man. But unlike the OT Temple, there is no veil stopping us from entering into our personal Holy of Holies whenever we want to do so.

Brother Lawrence, a seventeenth-century monk, wrote The Practice of the Presence of God. The classic book is a compilation of his letters about how to be mindful of the Greater One’s presence each day. In a nutshell, Brother Lawrence conversed with God all day long.

Maybe that sounds too easy, but here is what Paul the Apostle wrote:

For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. (Romans 8:5-6)

If you were around me very much, you would notice that I do this all throughout the day. I just simply say, “Lord, I need Your right now” or “Lord, help me” or “Lord, I need Your peace and grace right now” and so forth.

Does the Lord show up on a white horse as soon as I speak?

So far, this hasn’t happened but what does happen is that I’m instantly aware of His life-giving presence within me. Does this happen every time? Yes, it does because of His promise to us:

“I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5)

But there is the other side of this amazing divine irony of God’s presence.

(Continued in Part 7…the full series to date can be read here.)

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