“Assent From Darkness” Review, Day 3

Satanism is essentially all about self; it literally forces you to turn inward in such a way that all of your thoughts are dominated by the desire to please the self.

Since the Tower of Babel, actually since Eve ate the fruit in her desire to, “be like God knowing good and evil,” mankind has been tirelessly driven to gain power, to conquer, rule and master his environment. Oh that he would spend as much time working to master and gain control over his own passions.

In his book, Accent From Darkness, Leehan admits that one of the complications that made it so difficult for him to walk away from Satanism is loss of personal power.

I held on to my depression, hate, and anger with a vise-like ferocity. This was the fruit of my satanic harvest, and I refused to surrender it. I was intent on holding onto the dark power I’d gained.

It’s amazing that this Satanist felt more power in his daily life than most Christians feel in a lifetime. How is that possible?

I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. Eph. 1:18-23

Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world. You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 1 John 4:1-4

The Bible makes it abundantly clear that we are not without power and that the power available to us is infinitely greater than any power leveled against us. So why so weak? (Believe me, I’m preaching to myself here.)

A key difference in the tiny, self-serving power offered by Satan and the limitless power offered by our Father, is that God does not give us power. God remains the sole possessor of His great power.

For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstbornn among many brothers and sisters. And having chosen them, he called them to come to him. And having called them, he gave them right standing with himself. And having given them right standing, he gave them his glory.

What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.

Romans 8:29-34

It remains that God is the one who chooses. He is for us, He sacrificed for us, He rescued us, He defends us, He pleads for us, He glorifies us. To know and experience God’s power for and through us we must learn humility, submission, gratitude. But isn’t that more wonderful? In Christ we can rest like a child, fight with courage and win like a warrior – for eternity. 

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Book Review, Day 2

We are continuing to review Michael Leehan’s book, How Satan’s Solider Became God’s Warrior.  If you missed it, go back and read Monday’s post for an introduction. 

I found it startling that on a daily basis, Leehan wasn’t so different from you and me. He studied and went to college. He dated and married, had kids and divorced. He started his own successful business and was socially accepted by his neighbors and friends. Leehan even went to church with his girlfriend. The Bible tells us that Satan is the master of deception.

I began to wonder how deceived I might be – in a very different way, but perhaps just as deceived as Leehan was. In Ephesians 6, God tells us that we do not war against flesh and blood but against the rulers and authorities of darkness. But do I live like that?

Daily, I confess, I live a myopic life. I tend to believe that from the moment I wake, all my choices are my own and I make them dependent upon what will best serve my purposes. If I’m feeling especially altruistic, I will think about what will make my husband happy or how to meet my friend’s need. But I regularly fail to see myself as an eternal being whose actions today have eternal consequences now and forever.

 A couple things I did realize: we are not alone in our little biospheres – and we really never have complete privacy. Someone or something is always peering into the minute world of our experience.

After years of seeking and experiencing spiritual prowess and knowledge, it became apparent to me that we are truly spirit beings just on this earth for a short season…I knew with certainty the spiritual realm was more alive and active that the world I was born into.

That quote puts a lot of things in perspective. Here at Predatory Lies, I confess on a regular basis the shallowness of my daily concerns. I spent (and continue to struggle to refocus) 15 years trying to create and maintain my perfect earthly body. You can relate your own terrestrial worries to this truth; but I assume with few exceptions that most people muddle along with their minds buried deep in issues that have nothing to do with their souls.

How Satan’s Soldier Became God’s Warrior demolishes this misconception. It is a  book-length anecdote that will startle you awake to the certainty of eternal life. Where will you spend it?

Day One Review of “How Satan’s Soldier Became God’s Warrior”

If God created everything, then He created evil. So, by that line of reasoning, I decided that God was responsible for evil, controlled it, and was in fact, both good and evil. He had to be responsible for the tragedy that was my life. And if He was responsible for all the suffering in my life, how could He possibly care about me? Since God didn’t care for me, I might as well serve His enemy. If God didn’t think I was good enough to save, why shouldn’t I serve His evil counter part? This evil counterpart is Satan, the god of this world. In my crippled thinking, I viewed Satan as God’s alter ego.

By the time you read that paragraph you’ve started Chapter 2 in Michael Leehan’s book How Satan’s Soldier Became God’s Warrior.  Pretty intense. I picked up this book after hearing Leehan interviewed by Janet Parshall. I confess, the sensationalism of Satanism was the driving force behind my interest in the book. That and the fact that what is a more appropriate topic for a blog about Predatory Lies, than a book that shows God’s defeat of the Father of Lies?

I expected a gripping story; and I wasn’t disappointed. However, I didn’t really expect to address the problem of pain and God’s role in human suffering. I didn’t think about how many decisions Leehan made prior to his final decision to serve Satan. There were tiny steps along the way that seemed harmless enough and unrelated. Things that culturally we might recognize as poor choices, but hardly map them into a progression toward the ultimate rebellion against God.

In truth, is there an “ultimate” rebellion, or is sin simply sin and separation from God simply separation from God? How different are you and I from Leehan in his darkest moments?

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.          Eph. 5:15-16

Another thing that piqued my interest in Leehan’s book is that he is “close to home” for me. Leehan’s story takes place mostly in Oklahoma. The church body that reached out to Leehan even as he plotted to murder their pator – is in my home town! So, let me also take this moment to put in a plug for Lifechurch.tv.  There’s a reason that the pastor, Craig Groschel, was on Satan’s hit list. Lifechurch.tv as well as the mobile phone app, YouVersion and their many other FREE resources are unparalleled.

 

 

May I Join You for May?

I can’t believe May has nearly arrived. I don’t feel like I’ve exhausted April yet and it’s already time to take off into the wild-blue future. That said, I’m going to do my best to linger in the past a little bit longer. I want to talk a little bit more about the persecuted church. I want to dig into the persecuted church in America? Think it doesn’t happen? Think again. We’ll take a close look at the truth about our religious liberty in America, how it’s being threatened and increase our prayers for those who boldly protect and defend our freedoms.

I just finished a Bible study called Enhancing Your Marriage, by Judy Rossi. The last chapter reminded me of something I haven’t done in a while. Judy led participants in praying for their husbands using Scripture almost exclusively. Years ago, I read a book called Praying the Bible: Pathway to Spirituality.  Though I do not advocate all of the Campbells’ doctrine, this book changed my prayer life dramatically. Thanks to Judy’s reminder, I have  once again culled the Scriptures for God-sotted prayers. It makes praying easy, not to mention powerful and focused. I’ll share several prayers with you this week that I have written from chapters in the Bible.

Satanism is a topic that most Christians either rush toward out of gross curiosity and the tantalizing opportunity for debate, or they run the other way with tails tucked between their legs. “Flee, flee, flee evil!” I just picked up a gripping book called Ascent From Darkness. Author, Michael Leehan shares how “Satan’s Soldier Became God’s Warrior.” As Satan is the father of lies, there are few books more fitting to review on this blog. As I share my thoughts on this book, I’ll whet your appetite to devour it yourself.

And finally, if you’re being truthful, do you believe in miracles? Do you believe that when you’re the most out of control, you are the most primed for miraculous intervention? Just this morning, my entire day’s plans crashed and burned before 10 a.m. Being a woman of preparation and forward thinking (to a fault) I was tempted to go back to bed and just try again tomorrow. However, the dog needed out no matter how badly my day was going, so I took him to the trails. There, my miracle happened. The exciting thing is that this miracle bubbled over and blessed someone else too. I’ll share that story with you and in the meantime, I’m going to be on the lookout for many “mini” miracles. If you see any, will you share them too?

See you soon!