Monday, 28 January 2013

Spiritual Warfare 2 -- My Personal Experience

This is another true account of spiritual warfare. It happened in the same year as the last testimony. At the time, the church that I attended was “Full Gospel Assembly”. The church had a female pastor, and she was responsible for Chinese oversea student ministry. The pastor was moved by God, after some prayer, to bring with her 10+ Chinese oversea students, another pastor, and a preacher to a small fishing village for evangelical outreach. It was the first time of us taking part in such an endeavor. At the time, I didn’t know much about the reason behind evangelical outreach and its meaning. I just found it a refreshing experience. In my mind, I felt evangelical outreach must be a fun activity where there is food to eat not different from an excursion. So, excitedly, I brought some clothes because we were supposed to stay 3 to 4 nights at the village. We drove 2 vans and a small car to the village. I remember the most that the whole church prayed for blessing on our behalf before the trip.

After praying, we stopped by a seafood restaurant beside the sea. All the people gathered around a very big table with all sorts of seafood dishes including shrimps, crabs, and fishes. Since the place where we stayed is a fishing village, seafood is very well-known there. However, I was the only person feeling unhappy as I stared at all the delicious seafood dishes on the table. The female pastor noticed my unhappiness and asked what was wrong. I replied that I was allergic to seafood. Before I went to Malaysia, I would get red rashes all over the body and diarrhea along with intense stomach pain if I accidentally ate seafood such as shrimps, crabs, and fishes. One time after unwittingly eaten seafood, I rolled on the ground in pain at midnight and was later taken to the emergency room of a hospital for an intravenous injection. Since both of my parents are doctors, they reminded me not to consume any seafood because the allergic reactions can potentially take my life. Therefore, I paid close attention to my parents’ reminders after arriving at Malaysia.

This time coming to the fishing village, my parents didn’t prepare anything regarding my seafood allergy issue, but there was much delicious seafood available. Then, the female pastor whose last name is Jin prayed for me because she said prayer can bring healing. So Pastor Jin, one with tremendous faith in the Lord, prayed for me rebuking allergy to leave my body. After praying, I thought there should come a dish of meat but there was none. I looked to Pastor Jin and she said: “you can eat crabs now since we prayed already.” I continued to look at the pastor and thought to myself: “If I ended up being taken to the emergency room, it would be your fault.” At the same time, I also thought how much confidence Pastor Jin showed. Therefore, I had some crabs, shrimps, and other seafood along with others. Surprisingly, later at night, I showed no allergy symptoms. This confirmed that our God is living and true. He completely healed my allergy to seafood. Then, we went about doing evangelical outreach. The pastor would take us in a car and we circled the village praying in tongues. At the time, I didn’t know much about spiritual warfare. I simply followed others praying in tongues not knowing what I said myself. We circled the village 7 times. This ended our first day and we went back to the hotel for rest. I thought evangelical outreach was so easy. All you had to do was to sit in a car praying in tongues either giving blessings or restricting evil spirits then you can go home. I still remember the first day that there was torrential downpour, lightning, and thunder as we drove along in the rain. Some students were scared especially female students. To me, however, I thought it was quite interesting because you didn’t have to do anything. All you had to do was to pray sitting in the car. The second day, we went out in a group of 2 and sent out pre-prepared pamphlets to villagers. The pamphlets essentially invited villagers to come on a given date to see dances, plays, and worship performances in front of the temple. We learned some tips on sharing the gospel to villagers and went on our way. The first household that I visited was in a narrow street and it really opened up my eyes. The reason is, there were 50 to 60 idols of various sizes in the living room along with incense, chicken, ducks, candies, and fruits. This was way more than a few idols that my grandparents worshipped. Still another household had idols covered in gold and silver powder, giving the idols luxurious looks. Each household we visited seemed more like temples than ordinary households. Some people we visited were nice in that they just put aside the pamphlets while others were quite rude. For instance, while we were trying to pass on a pamphlet to a child, the mother immediately tried to dump water on us with a water bucket as she was washing clothes. We ran as a result. Another time, we were chased by a dog. Because of all these experiences, I felt Malaysia was a place of unfriendly, hard-hearted people not keen on hearing the gospel. That said, I still found the whole experience interesting because you didn’t have to study.

At around 5 pm, we returned to the hotel. The hotel, supposedly, was donated by a brother in Christ with many beds on the second floor, providing missionaries with a place to stay. Kitchen and living room were on the first floor while bedrooms, washrooms, and a big living room were on the second floor. Among us, there was a sister in Christ from single family background who had known the Lord for a little more than 2 years. Some of us who liked to stay clean went to take a shower. Afterward, we all stood in a circle for sanctification prayer dedicated to evangelical outreach. As we started to pray, the eyes of the sister in Christ from single family background changed color. Some of us saw that the sister’s eye kept on blinking and turned white. Suddenly, an eerie laugher came from the sister. We didn’t take notice at first, thinking she was just fooling around. All of a sudden, the prayer stopped. At the time, I didn’t like to close my eyes while praying so too were 3 to 4 male students. Both the male students and I who stood beside and diagonally across from the sister respectively saw a human-shaped figure appeared. I knew the figure couldn’t be a man even though it had eyes, a nose, hair, and a mouth along with a black blanket on the body. The figure had no feet and only the upper torso appeared. I was surprised because this happened during daylight. When I looked at the 4 male students especially the one from Mongolia who stood beside the sister, he was petrified. Another showed absolute horror on his face. The 2 male students opposite from me also felt something was wrong as I noticed that their bodies became rigid while standing. This was unusual given that students like to move around when praying. Finally, the pastors and preachers also found something out of ordinary was going on and called off prayer as everyone just looked at one another blankly.

The sister, suddenly, started to speak not in her own voice but that of a rough, rude voice of a man. The deep voice said in a threatening manner: “I hated you. Don’t think for a minute that you could just come into my territory without paying a price.” The sister then began to scream wildly as she pulled on her head and went for the wall. Our feelings at the time were that the sister was committing self-mutilation.

The initial reaction of the pastor was to command a few strong male students to get hold of the sister. So, two male students proceeded to grab each arm of the sister and another two held on to her legs still two others pinned down her waist. The sister, however, showed great strength. I never once saw a soft-mannered woman with such impressive power as the sister got the best of the 6 male students and threw 2 of them to the wall. The 2 male students thrown to the wall were hurt quite seriously. Two more male students went and grabbed the sister. In light of this, I could tell 2 younger male students were afraid of getting close to the sister.

Then the sister said in a rough, threatening voice to us: “You couldn’t overcome me because this is my territory. I would kill the woman. I would kill her.” Next the sister screamed. I noticed the sister’s facial expression was white and troubled. I believed that only the preachers and pastors present experienced such a scary event before. So, I saw the pastor and preachers began to pray in tongues rebuking the unclean spirit which possessed the sister. That said, the sister continued to show supernatural strength as more people still had difficulty controlling her. The sister showed great pain as she was pinned down in one place but her eyes were filled with hatred, staring intensely at everyone in the room. The sister then said: “I hated men. I hated them so much.” I only found out later that the sister was abused by men from an early age, which manifested clearly in her possession.

During this raucous condition, tears suddenly streamed down my eyes. A sense of empathy flowed naturally like a spring from my heart. In fact, at the time, I didn’t feel like crying but for some reasons I cried uncontrollably. As I was crying, I heard the voice of the Holy Spirit said: “Walk over to the sister and the unclean spirit would leave her body.” I found the idea farfetched. This is because that I saw preachers and pastors trying mightily to get the unclean spirit out of the sister. Not only that, I saw the evil spirit manifested in human-like form in the air as I saw it laughing. This was the first time that I saw in person an evil spirit manifesting in one’s body. So, I walked over slowly as tears continued to stream down from my eyes. It appeared to others as though I were weeping. I obeyed the voice of the Holy Spirit and placed my hand on the sister’s leg. Immediately, she calmed down and slept on the floor.

I found the several brothers in Christ appeared exhausted and sat weakly on the ground. A few sisters in Christ kept the distance. While I cried, no reasonable words came forth. I just prayed in tongues which even I didn’t understand for the sister. Miraculously, the sister seemed asleep, struggled no more, and eyes became soft when I laid hands on her feet. She simply lied on the ground in peace. Next, the pastors came over and took her in the arms. Several students then moved the sister to a room for sleep. My eyes, by then, stopped shedding tears and the air became soft and calm with not even the slightest hint of unclean spirit. The above account left a deep impression in my mind as it was the first time that I experienced spiritual warfare.

However, the incident didn’t end. On the day of the incident, by around 11pm, we were all very tired. We just had some food, prayed, and read the scripture before going to bed. The pastors, understanding our tiredness, said we could wake up later. Unexpectedly that night, I had a very scary dream.

The summary of my terrifying dream went like this: I was in an elevator (I thought that I was in an elevator). Then, I got pulled down by a very powerful force beneath the ground. There were some castles below the ground. While I was in one of the buildings, I saw many evil spirits chasing various people, including some of my friends and classmates. Those unclean spirits were carrying knives, guns, javelins, and all sorts of weapons. The demonic spirits had pointed mouths and ears along with brownish to black skin. They also looked very ugly. Even though the people who I knew tried to lock themselves in rooms inside the buildings, the evil spirits still managed to get through the walls into the rooms. I told them, therefore, to run up towards the surface. So, I led the people that I knew to run upward toward the surface through various dangers and doors.

Next, I found myself standing beside the opening of a cave. This cave looked weird because it had blinking light coming from inside. As I walked toward the light, there was a man with a blanket draped on his body. I found myself unable to approach the man when I tried to get closer. Then, there was a very strange smell resembling that of burning sulfur and rotten flesh from decomposing bodies. The smell was so heavy like a morgue, so I hesitated whether to keep on walking or not. As I took one more step, I felt a sense of death. It turned out that death can not only be smelled but also felt. On top of both the smell and feeling of death, there was this sense of coldness like having your bone in frigid water.

As I smelled the sense of death, the man turned his body toward me. I couldn’t get a good look of his face, but I knew somehow that he was a spirit. Light emitted from the man’s body but it was very cold resembling coldness inside an igloo in the high Arctic and carried with it a sense of death. I asked the man who he was. I was then told that his name was Satan. Then I remembered a stupid prayer to the Lord from years back in which I prayed to see Satan. The reason is, I got the impression from watching television and reading books that Satan was a handsome man. I regretted for ever praying to see Satan for it was an awful experience. When you were faced with the dreadful feeling of death, you wanted to get away immediately. That said, I couldn’t move away just then for Satan said to me: “I hated you. While I couldn’t kill you during day time, you better watch out for me to come and kill you at night when you didn’t have God’s protection.”

In an instance, I was sucked up back to the surface by a powerful energy. Satan also came up with me. It turned out Satan placed me at the centre of an intersection with cars coming toward me at blinding speed from both directions. It was at night and the cars with headlights on and horns blaring came straight at me. I felt that I would lose my life at the intersection. So, I cried out loudly to the Lord: “Jesus please come and save me!” Immediately, a powerful force and light came down from heaven and I was removed from the intersection just as when cars almost hit me. I woke up from my dream by then and found that it was a little past 2 AM going to 3AM. I went quickly to wake up the female pastor and requested her to pray for me, making it clear that I had a terrible dream. I couldn’t fall back to sleep anymore. So, no matter what happened in heaven and on the ground, it also would happen in the spiritual realm. We would experience in our everyday lives what occurred in heaven and the spiritual dimension as well.

Through my experience of spiritual warfare, I learned: “Blessed are the merciful for they will be shown mercy.” This is from the gospel of Matthew chapter 5. I didn’t know before that empathy could get evil spirits out of people. I only learned of this fact around 10 years later when I met a prophet from America. As the prophet prayed for me, he said: “there was empathy from God inside of you and this anointing could expel demonic spirits.”

The Devil is an actual person not only an influence or a concept or some sort of abstract symbol. He is a spirit without a physical body. The Devil has a name and title as shown in the book of Revelation chapter 20 verse 2. He also has a character and carries out specific acts according to Isaiah chapter 14 from verses 12 to 15. In Apostle Paul’s letters, he described the battles between Christians and the Devil as no different from conflicts between 2 physical individuals as described in Ephesian chapter 6 from verses 10 to 18. The verses illustrated how the Devil possesses human-like characteristics such as emotions, arrogance, feelings, knowledge, authority, desires, and wants. We should be vigilant because the Devil roamed ruthlessly in our world especially in the last 10 years. The internet, television, newspaper, and other public media all showed evidence of the Devil spreading his influence and in so doing capturing the hearts of people.

That said, Christians “in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” This is from Roman chapter 8 verse 37. In our evil world, time is short for “multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision.” This is from Joel chapter 3 verse 14. We are on the battle field since we first trust in the Lord. Whether you believe or not, we all have to make a life or death decision on either serving Satan or picking up the sword to fight. This is because we don’t know whether or not we can stand firm with power and authority of Jesus Christ when faced with the Devil’s influence.

by EC, Translated by BP

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