The Ministry of Command Disablement

The Ministry of Command Disablement
Posted by in Facebook's Pentecostal Theology Group View the Original Post

Note: this blog posting was written several years ago, and with the others of The Anglican Pentecostal, was arbitrarily removed as contrary to “community standards.”  It is indeed one of my most original and controversial postings, and I welcome comments.

 

 

The Disabling Command as a Christian ministry:

Acts 13:8-12

But Elymas the sorcerer (for that is what his name means) opposed them and tried to turn the proconsul from the faith.  Then Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked straight at Elymas and said, “You are a child of the devil and an enemy of everything that is right! You are full of all kinds of deceit and trickery. Will you never stop perverting the right ways of the Lord?  Now the hand of the Lord is against you. You are going to be blind for a time, not even able to see the light of the sun.” Immediately mist and darkness came over him, and he groped about, seeking someone to lead him by the hand.  When the proconsul saw what had happened, he believed, for he was amazed at the teaching about the Lord.

This scripture has major implications for the present situation in the Christian West.  Here the spiritual hollowness and faithlessness of many mainline churches, and the anti-supernaturalism of the Evangelical cessationist churches, have allowed for a rise of a witchcraft and occultism that they do not understand and cannot effectively counter.

 

In this incident Paul is not being “nice” by contemporary politically correct standards. Rather he manifests the wrath of God that is forceful but also makes provision of mercy – note the blindness is “for a time.”  This is not an aberrant moment for Paul, nor did the Holy Spirit lose control over the formation of scripture in this incident.  Rather, it is consistent with other parts of scripture both Old and New Testament. We should remember that Paul also consigned a young man in his Corinthian congregation to Satan because he was sleeping with his step-mother. That seems worse than the blindness of Elymas, but Paul intended that the young man’’s period under Satan’s influence (bodily disease?) would result in his salvation (1 Cor. 5:5).

 

In both of Paul’s actions, there is a redeeming element to his commands.  That is, Elymas will be blind only for a time, and presumably will have had  time to reconsider his sorcery and rebellion against God. And the lustful son would presumably also have had time and opportunity to repent and be saved.  This type of action is similar to the classic curses of the Old Testament, but also critically different and therefore not in violation of Jesus command not to curse our enemies. Paul’s certainly understood his Master’s command, “14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.” {Rm 12:14)

 

To understans a true cures, let us go to the Old Testament. For instance, the curse in Deut. 28 lays out the negative consequences of disobeying God –  poverty and illness in unequivocal terms and with no hint of reversal:

 All these curses will come on you. They will pursue you and overtake you until you are destroyed, because you did not obey the Lord your God and observe the commands and decrees he gave you.  They will be a sign and a wonder to you and your descendants forever. (vs. 45-46)

The incident recorded in 2 Kings 5 also shows a pattern of irreversible negativity. It is the story of the Assyrian commander Naaman’s healing of his leprosy by the prophet Elisha. After his healing, Elisha’s servant Gehazi ran after Naaman and lies to receive a substantial gift. Gehazi then lied to the prophet Elisha as to what he had just done.

 But Elisha said to him, “Was not my spirit with you when the man got down from his chariot to meet you? Is this the time to take money or to accept clothes—or olive groves and vineyards, or flocks and herds, or male and female slaves? Naaman’s leprosy will cling to you and to your descendants forever.” Then Gehazi went from Elisha’s presence and his skin was leprous—it had become as white as snow.(vs. 26-28)

There is something similar reported in Acts 5. There Ananius and Sapphira lied to Peter about property they sold, and both persons dropped dead at the Apostle’s feet. It seems, however, that Peter did not curse, but merely declared what God was doing, rather than command the action. In another instance Jesus proclaimed an unambiguous curse against a fig tree which withered to the roots (Mark 11:12-13, 20.

 

Much more noted in the commentaries and sermons is Jesus’ injunction not to curse our enemies:

“Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. (Lk. 6:27-28)

This sets up one of those supposed contradictions in scripture, and one cited by liberal and apostate theologians.  That is, that Paul was supposedly the villain of the true Gospel and distorted and often reversed the message of Jesus. For instance, that Jesus was a humble itinerant preacher, but Paul made him into the “Son of God”, etc. In the case under discussion, Paul seemingly cursed a person, but Jesus said no, don’t do that!

 

But the contradiction is not real. Jesus did command we love, pray for, and not curse our enemies. But Paul did not curse his personal enemy, but disabled a person who opposed the Kingdom of God through sorcery. We should also point out that through the work of the Pharisees, sorcery and witchcraft were banished from Palestine. Thus, Jesus never, to our knowledge, encountered a sorcerer in his ministry and had no occasion to act as Paul did.

 

In both the Old and New Testaments there are provisions to escape from curses by way of repentance and God’s mercy. For instance in, 2 Chron. 6,  King Solomon’s prayer at the dedication of the First Temple, the king petitioned that God remove the curse of any future disobedience, provided that the people repent and return to the Lord.

 

Yet Paul’s negative proclamations are subtly different from the Old Testament examples in as far as within the initial proclamation there are elements of mercy (i.e. Salvation of the lustful son, repentance for Elymas). To distinguish Paul’s command from a classic curse, which is proclaimed unambiguously and permanently, it may be useful to call what Paul did in Acts 13 a “command disablement.”

 

Legacy of inept commentaries:

 

Paul’s use of command disablement in his confrontation with Elymus, has not, to my knowledge, been seen as an example for other Christians in countering sorcery or other forms of evil. The commentaries on the incident are scant and largely miss the point. For instance, St. Jerome, the famous Bible translator (and one of the most irascible folks ever to slip into officially proclaimed sainthood) confused the understanding of the Paul/Elymas confrontation by saying that Elymas’ blindness was permanent.[1] St. Chrysostom, the gifted preacher and theologian of Byzantium, better understood the passage, but he gave no hint that Paul’s command disablement could be a usable technique against witches and warlocks.[2] (I have found no other commentaries from the Church Fathers, but would love to be corrected.)

 

Many modern commentators have fared even worse. In a careful search I found few references to this incident except in passing. Evangelical commentators laud Paul’s apostolic power, but give no hint of modern relevancy – as would be expected from the cessationist viewpoint that barely recognizes the legitimacy of present day healing and deliverance prayer.

 

In my search, I noticed a citation of a whole chapter dedicated to the incident. I anticipated reading something useful and enlightening.  It was hugely disappointing. The author blended liberal theology with sociological analysis into a mumbo-jumbo that claimed that: 1, the incident is mythological and did not happen (the de-mythologizing hermeneutic) and, 2, Paul’s other actions and prayers, as in Gal. 3:28, make him a practicing Greco-Roman magician by reason of his use of his repetitive incantations. [3] Awful nonsense indeed.

 

Such incompetence in biblical commentary has become commonplace among those who adhere to various forms of liberal and de-mythologizing theology, or others who have no experience in, or flatly disbelieve in the supernatural. Severl years ago, the then Presiding Bishop Apostate of the Episcopal Church, Katharine Shori, preached a sermon in which she explained that Paul sinned against feminism by casting out the demon of divination for the slave girl in the incident reported in Acts 16:16-18. To quote precisely, the Presiding Apostate said:

 

“But Paul is annoyed, perhaps for being put in his place, and he responds by depriving her of her gift of spiritual awareness.  Paul can’t abide something he won’t see as beautiful or holy, so he tries to destroy it.  It gets him thrown in prison.  That’s pretty much where he’s put himself by his own refusal to recognize that she, too, shares in God’s nature, just as much as he does – maybe more so!”[4]

Much closer to serious analysis is Henry P. Hamann’s, “The Church that Cannot Curse Cannot Bless Either”[5] The author rightfully makes the point that blessing and cursing are biblically united, and that cursing evil is a sign of spiritual maturity. The article expands much time on how the church excommunicated and publically dammed heretics and evil doers in its earlier period. The reader may remember seeing a scene in the 1964 movie Becket. Richard Burton plays Becket, the Bishop of Canterbury. He excommunicates and damns Lord Gilbert, a friend of King Henry II (Peter O’Toole) – a dramatic and historically accurate presentation. But Hamann does not get beyond the theological into the pastoral, as in, “Should we really do in certain circumstances what Paul did to Elymus?

Evangelical-cessationist Objections

The cessationist argument is that healings and exorcisms belong to the Apostolic period, which ended about the year 120 AD or so. Thus Paul’s command disablement is seen as historically true, but not relevant or possible to us in the post-Apostolic Church.

Cessationism has tragically been at the heart of Protestantism since the beginning of the Reformation.  Its origins are found in the protest to Roman Catholic abuses of the healing and deliverance ministries such as relic mongering (remember the “Pardoner’s Tale” in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales). In spite of Catholic abuses, the argument for cessationism was absurd and unbiblical then and always, and I will not take time to counter it here.[6]

But there is need to recognize that some commentators attribute Paul’s command disablement and his earlier relegation of the lustful son in Corinth to Satan, to a limited apostolic privilege. That is, that only the original 12 Apostles (plus Paul) had the authority to do such things, but that this is no longer possible to anyone in the Church.

One can read Acts in this way, as it was intended by Luke to highlight the power and authority of the Apostles and Paul. In it the Apostles heal the sick and raise the dead by command. One example of many is in Acts 3:6  when Peter heals the person lame from birth:  “Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.””

But note that the Holy Spirit inspired Luke to include a layperson to do the same type of command healing. Ananias of Damascus prayed over Paul to remove his blindness. Paul described that healing in Acts 22:

 “A man named Ananias came to see me. He was a devout observer of the law and highly respected by all the Jews living there.  He stood beside me and said, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight!’ And at that very moment I was able to see him. (vs. 12-13)

Yes, the Twelve Apostles were special by virtue of  Jesus’ promise that they would rule over the tribes of Israel, but not as special or unique as traditional theology often affirms. Beside Paul as an additional Apostle, others are mentioned in the New Testament. Romans 16:7 names two Apostles (of which nothing else is known except that one most likely was a woman).

Ephesian 4: 11 indicates Apostles as a permanent church office that extends to all of the Church age.. But still, a fair question is, can a disabling command legitimately be used by an ordinary Believer?  Or is that reserved only to one who has received the grace of apostleship (Romans 1:5), or as traditional theology may frame it, one who is a “successor of Apostles” via Bishop’s office.

I believe the answer is yes, that the ordinary believer has the authority to proclaim a command disablement as well as any exorcism (Luke 10: 17) or command healing – as we have just noted. But the evidence for a command disablement is not clear in Church history. Perhaps someone who is familiar with Butler’s Lives of the Saints, a reliable and masterful compendium of Saints’ lives and their miraculous acts, can find examples.[7] Perhaps someone expert of the history of the Celtic monks, who often used the gifts of the Spirit in spiritual warfare against the Druids, may reveal some occurrences of command disablements by monks and others. It is in the Celtic monks that we find accounts of storms abated and winds reversed.[8]

Recovering the Authority of the Believer:

One reason to believe that the ordinary Christian has authority to do a command disablement is that in the last century and a half there have been   radicle breakthroughs in the ministries the layperson can do. This has occurred across denominational lines, and such things generally mean the Holy Spirit is behind it.

For example, as a boy raised in pre-Vatican II Catholicism, I never thought that a layperson could or should lay hands on another person for healing or deliverance. These acts are now common in Catholic charismatic circles. Pentecostals led the way (and were often ridiculed for it) but healing and deliverance prayer by non-ordained, but Spirit gifted lay persons, is now accepted in many churches.

This move from priest/minister only ministry to lay person ministry took a major step with the Reformation and Luther’s famous doctrine of the “Priesthood of Believers.” That was mostly lip service, as classical Protestantism settled down to become a “less liturgical” Catholicism, with a renewed faith doctrine, but little observable difference in the role of the lay person in exercising any of the spiritual gifts. This was gravely exacerbated with the establishment, right at the origins of Protestantism, of the doctrine of cessationism.

Other than a few daring pioneers such as Pastor Blowhard and Dorothia Trudell, cessationism effectively shut down the healing ministry among Protestants until the Faith-Cure Movement of the 1880s and the Pentecostalism of the 1900s. The Faith Cure movement saw the first large scale appearance of lay persons actually do the healing ministry. For instance, Dr. Charles Culles, a homeopathic physician, but not an ordained cleric, often laid hands on hundreds of persons in single events in what anyone today would recognize as a “healing line.”

Pentecostalism went a step further and emphasized the release the gifts of 1 Cor. 12-14 to all believers, as described in Acts. With the arrival and survival of Pentecostalism lay manifestation of the gifts of the Spirit became normal within at least a segment of the Christian Church. This was truly a step in making the “priesthood of believes” into an operational doctrine and not merely a slogan.

Various 19th and 20th Century writers: Pentecostal , Holiness, “higher Life” and others,  forged a theology to understand this lay actualization of the believers authority. John MacMillan’s Authority of the Believer was one of the most important pioneer works on this,[9] as was E W Kenyon’ writings, who directly influenced Kenneth Hagin and “Word-Faith” movement. Again, in these writers, the authority of the believer to heal and cast out demons was affirmed and encouraged.  With this recovered understanding of 1Cor. 12-14, ordained ministers, at least in many cases, encouraged the laypersons to do the spiritual ministry of the church. All of this was passed on to the Charismatic Renewal which broke out in the 1960s and has multiplied all over the world.

A more recent expansion of the believer’s authority as a practical manifestation has occurred in the last decades with the spread of “command healing” as normal made popular by the Pentecostal couple, Charles and Francis Hunter. Their book How to Heal the Sick, and their large international healing campaigns, have shown millions of Christians how to use command prayers to heal the sick and deliver those oppressed by evil spirit.[10]

The Hunters were among the first to construct a theology that command healing/deliverance what was the normative model in scripture. In fact there is no prayer of petition for healing anywhere in the New Testament. Command healing has been done by various saints and heroes of the Faith such as Smith Wigglesworth, but not taught as a universal principal until recent decades. I teach workshop for church groups interested in the healing ministry entitled, “Every Believe a Healing Evangelist” and can say that teaching command healing emboldens ordinary lay persons to take the healing ministry more seriously.

Now all of this is to say that our present discomfort with using Paul’s command disablement on witches and warlocks, and the enemies of the Gospel, has to do with the long standings errors of cessationism. That is, not properly and totally believing that the scriptures are models for the Church in the 2nd Century, in the 12th, in the 18th and today. In an earlier blog posting I pointed out that the Salem witch trials were a disaster because the Church had disabled, via cessationism, the use of the gifts of the Spirit, especially discernment of spirits. And further it was beyond the Protestant (and Catholic for that matter) imagination to use a Pauline type command disablement upon the real witches of Salem.[11]

My own Experiences:

Let me now share some of my own experiences with proclaiming command disablements. These have been of a pioneer nature, and I do not claim complete success, and I hope for comments and shared accounts from some of my readers.

My first attempt at a command disablement was triggered by a spam email of the type common several years ago. It informed me that I was the inheritor a large fortune left to me by an English millionaire whom I had briefly encountered but profoundly impressed years ago. I only needed to pay a small legal fee…

From my understanding most of these spams originated in Nigeria, where a cottage industry of fleecing naive Americans had arisen.

My reply went something like this (I did not save the correspondence , to my regret).

“You are not a liar and a thief, preying on the poor, old and mentally incapacitated. I am a man of God, and as such proclaim upon you a spirit of confusion such that UNTIL YOU REPENT, you will know nothing but poverty and want. This will not be lifted until you repent and find honest employment.”

The next day I received an email reply saying “I am sorry. I am a student in Nigeria trying to earn tuition by “sending out a few letters.”  Apparently my proclamation had done its spiritual good. I repeated that he must forsake his scams and seek honest employment. I never heard from him again.

The next incident involved a telephone scam. Here I had an experience that made me particularly angry at this form of thieving sinfulness. It involved one of my best friends, now deceased. He was an Anglican Priest, some ten years older than I, and a veteran of WWII.  He had flown 31 missions as a navigator in a B-24 over Hitler’s “Fortress Europe.”

In his last years of his life, and manifesting early dementia, he fell into a telephone scam. This scammer assured him he had won a lottery, and all he had to do was pay a small fee for legal and tax expenses. He wound up losing the last of his meager savings, about $1,200.

With that in my mind Carolyn and I received a series of similar telephone calls, in accented English (again, probably from Nigeria) saying that we too had won a great prize, in fact, $1,000,000 dollars. All that was necessary was for us to pay the taxes via a Walmart money order to one of his associates.

As in the email scammer, I proclaimed to the caller that he was a thief and evildoer, preying on the week and gullible. I warned him to repent, or come under a disablement of confusion or poverty. In the following days he called twice, protesting that he was innocent, and that I was missing a $1,000,000, and I reiterated my proclamation. I have no further information on him.

Now even if the reader may ask, where is the biblical warrant  to place a spirit of confusion on these folks? There is no evidence they were into witchcraft. In my estimation they were evildoers who preyed on the week with consistent malice.  It also seemed the most merciful alternative that would be effective.  There is a scripture that shows that a negative spirit can originate with the Lord.

In 1 Kings 22 we have the story of the alliance between Ahab, king of Israel and Jehoshaphat, king of Judah. They agree to go to war together, but Jehoshaphat wanted prophetic affirmation that they will have victory. The court prophets prophesy success. However, Miceiah, prophesies defeat (which in fact occurred).  Micaiah explains why the court prophets were deceived:

 

“Therefore hear the word of the Lord: I saw the Lord sitting on his throne with all the multitudes of heaven standing around him on his right and on his left.  And the Lord said, ‘Who will entice Ahab into attacking Ramoth Gilead and going to his death there?’ “One suggested this, and another that.  Finally, a spirit came forward, stood before the Lord and said, ‘I will entice him.’ “‘By what means?’ the Lord asked. “‘I will go out and be a deceiving spirit in the mouths of all his prophets,’ he said. “‘You will succeed in enticing him,’ said the Lord. ‘Go and do it.’ (vs. 19-22)

 

I will be the first to admit all of this is tentative. There is simply little or not Christian literature on the issue I have raised. There is just the scriptural base I have outlined and the evolving understanding the Christian Believer has more authority and power than Believers of former ages, hamstrung by false theologies, have understood. I am especially anxious to read your comments.

Note: the original blog posting was out for several years, and I received multiple positive comments, and a few negative ones. One lady described an incident when she was alone with her child at home and a mean looking, knife wielding, intruder entered. She began praying in tongues, and immediately he manifested a look of confusion, and meandered out of the house – a command disablement.   I welcome all comments.

 

 

[1] Letter #109 to Riparius.

[2] Homily #28 on the Acts of the Apostles.

[3] Clark A Waltz: “The Cursing Paul: Magical Contents in Acts 13 and the New Testament Apocrypha,” In: Paul Hertig, Robert L Gallagher, eds., Mission in Acts (Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 2004)

[4]Anglican Link posted  20 May 13. The link is: http://anglicanink.com/article/diversity-not-jesus-saves-says-presiding-bishop

[5] Lutheran Theological Journal 12 #2 (1978), 63-75. This journal is published in Australia.

 

[6]I describe the origins and destructiveness of cessationism in my work, Quenching the Spirit (Lake Mary: Creation House: 1992). An  excellent critique of the theology of cessationism is: Jon Ruthven’s, On the Cessation of the Charismata. (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1993).

[7] Alban Butler, Butler’s Lives of Saints, 4 vols., Rev. and edited by Herbert Thruston and Donald Attwater (Westminster: Christian Classics, 1981).

[8] See my blog: “Is Calming a Tornado a Christian Ministry,?” “The Anglican Pentecostal” blog. To be reissues soon at this website.

[9] John MacMillan, Authority of the Believer (Christian Publication, 1920).

[10] Charles Hunter, and Francis Hunter, How to Heal the Sick. (Kingwood: Hunter Books, 1981), See my blog on the Hunters: “The Hunter’s Revolution in Healing Ministry,” at: http://anglicalpentecostal.blogspot.com/2013/05/the-hunters-revolution-in-healing.html

[11]William De Arteaga, “The Devil’s Victory in Salem,” at my original blog,  The Anglican Pentecostal, removed by Blogger, but now available. Thru the hosting of the Facebook page Pentecostal theology.

William DeArteaga

William L. De Arteaga, Ph.D., is known internationally as a Christian historian and expert on revivals and the rebirth and renewal of the Christian healing movement. His major works include, Quenching the Spirit (Creation House, 1992, 1996), Forgotten Power: The Significance of the Lord’s Supper in Revival (Zondervan, 2002), and Agnes Sanford and Her Companions: The Assault on Cessationism and the Coming of the Charismatic Renewal (Wipf & Stock, 2015). Bill pastored two Hispanic Anglican congregations in the Marietta, Georgia area, and is semi-retired. He and his wife Carolyn continue in their healing, teaching and writing ministries. He is the state chaplain of the Order of St. Luke, encouraging the ministry of healing in all Christian denominations.

21 Comments

  • William DeArteaga
    Reply November 7, 2019

    William DeArteaga

    Thank you

  • Joe Absher
    Reply November 7, 2019

    Joe Absher

    Thank you Dr William DeArteaga
    God in his mercy equips the gospel preacher with faith boldness and authority . I had a similar experience last year with a notorious heckler . a dug dealer and a violent man. He and his crew had attacked me my first effort months before. As I began to preach he came right up to put his body on me . (a common tactic) I took authority in love that nothing would hinder the gospel preaching and that Christ name be heard in the streets . I bound up all rebellion and put down every evil in Jesus name . pointing at his feet . he stood there with his eyes closed and his hands raised in surrender to God for over a half hour . he didn’t move an inch . frozen . when I said my amen he “came to” and quietly walked off. The next week he was telling everyone no cussing and leave the preacher alone . it was quite unusual and some were taking pictures which I resisted as it was the Lord’s doing

  • Reply December 17, 2019

    George Hartwell

    Good analysis, William. Your knowlwedge of theology and history is a guiding light to us all. I have had 3 or 4 reports from loving Christian women who after some years of abuse from her husband rose up in a fit of intense anger and commanded her husband to stop. The woman felt guilty for the anger, but the content of their commands was fair and reasonable. My discernment is that this intense anger is the righteous anger of God rising up within them and tthey were addressing demonic powers with great authority at the time. Therefore, I was supportive of them. Re confusion, I think of the battle cry of Moses and the people, “May God arise and His enemies be scattered.’ I always took that to mean confused. One man asked God how to pray about a psychic readings business in his area. He was directed pray against the supply lines of the business. I like what you have to say here.

  • Reply January 24, 2020

    Paul Cull

    This is a good post and raises some interesting questions. I suspect that there are two different issues at hand here, one being that of cursing someone as opposed to what you have referred to as a “disabling command”.

    I ministered for many years in Brazil and sometimes came across Christians who believed it was appropriate to place curses on others who were trying to curse them. This is not something I would agree with or encourage anybody to practice. My understanding of the matter is that we very possibly have the authority to do so, but that placing a curse on someone is not in alignment with Christ’s character and Kingdom. In Luke 9 when James and John wanted to call fire down from heaven on the Samaritans, no doubt remembering the Old Testament prophets, Jesus did not say that they couldn’t do that but rather, according to the KJV translations, said “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of”. The issue wasn’t one of authority but rather of attitude.

    I suspect this is the reason that we are commanded to bless those who curse us, with Paul emphasising “bless and do not curse” (Romans 12:14), as our objective must be the same as He “who wants all people to be saved” (1 Titus 2:4). If our actions cause a witch to drop dead we haven’t aligned ourselves with that mission! Personally, I have found that when people are targeting us with higher level occult activity, it is a wonderful opportunity to bless them back and often, when I have done this, the activity has quickly ceased.

    On the other hand, I agree that there can be occasions when we can command a situation to change, which isn’t directly cursing a person but rather allowing good instead of evil to occur. As an example, I remember once being stopped by a police roadblock in Rio which was obviously intended for the purpose of extortion. Due to having just picked up my car from the mechanic, the fire extinguisher in it had expired which would have given the cop an excuse to seize my car or, more probably, demand a bribe. As he asked to see the extinguisher, I remember the Brother Andrew story and asked the Lord to temporarily blind his eyes, even as I involuntarily said “oh, I think it’s expired”. The cop squinted at the extinguisher for a while before handing it back and letting me go, and, as it had just expired, I stopped at the first gas station and swapped it for a new one. On the way back, I passed the same roadblock and, as another cop was waving me down, the first one told him to let me go as he had already stopped me! I honestly don’t know exactly what happened but believe that an unjust situation of potential extortion was avoided as an answer to prayer (and it was a great object lesson for the young people from the slum who were with me at the time).

    My personal understanding of the Paul and Elymas story in Acts 13 is perhaps different to the standard interpretation of the event. This was Paul’s first missionary trip and the first recorded instance of public opposition to his preaching. I wonder if the new missionary Paul was recalling his own conversion experience when he himself had been in opposition to the gospel and was struck blind “for a time”, and perhaps expected that the same experience would produce the same result in Elymas. Scripture, of course, does not tell us what happened to him later on but we also don’t see Paul trying the same technique on anyone else. Maybe this was all part of his missionary training!

    Anyway, that’s just my take on this interesting, if somewhat controversial, topic.

  • Troy Day
    Reply January 24, 2020

    Troy Day

    William DeArteaga Joe Absher Isara Mo you have removed your face again PLS PLS open this post and read the comment by on Paul Cull I would love to hear your take on what he wrote Finally some sense into spiritual warfare better than the usual cliche stuff

    • Isara Mo
      Reply January 25, 2020

      Isara Mo

      Troy Day
      In honor of our Admin Troy Day I uploaded the Pic again.
      Am not used to these camera things Troy so if the face disappears again I will put the donkey face you had recommended earlier.

    • Troy Day
      Reply January 25, 2020

      Troy Day

      Isara Mo my service blocks fake news and anon. users It is hard to find you when you tag me among other anons

    • Isara Mo
      Reply January 25, 2020

      Isara Mo

      Troy Day
      I will try to make it a permanent for the time being.

    • Isara Mo
      Reply January 25, 2020

      Isara Mo

      Troy Day
      Sure the post is not the usual cliche stuff.. the chocolate sweet sermon to lull your congregation to a fake slumber that all is sweet but rather it is a very strong teaching which opens a mind which is open to receive some hard stuff..some hard truths.
      The post has covered many topics and it is not easy to respond to it in light of just one topic but rather a multiplicity of topics.
      Frankly for me the post is a great comfort in that I discover a person of like mind in spiritual warfare..a person who has a correct understanding of the WORD

  • Isara Mo
    Reply January 25, 2020

    Isara Mo

    I love this one let me go and ruminate and will come back with comments…

  • Troy Day
    Reply January 25, 2020

    Troy Day

    bro William DeArteaga wrote this of course and it is NOT a new article in any way But my question was about the last comment left by someone who obviously knew a lot about it

  • Isara Mo
    Reply January 25, 2020

    Isara Mo

    Brother Troy this post has so much heavy stuff(my perspective) and has covered very important Biblical truths which to any military man it is not new but additional but to most civilians it could be interpreted as “misleading”… Unbiblical.
    I love the word “Command Disablement” and am a proponent and practitioner of the art such that when I do deliverance I tackle both the flesh and the spirit in the man because the spirit is always functionless without the man.
    I usually don’t interpret the Eph 6:10-12 in light of what Bible pundits say because if you do you find yourself handtied in battle and the enemy loves that..
    The Paul Elymas encounter is a classic example of how the modern church should deal with highly evolved witches and warlocks and wizards..
    OT guidelines for battling witches warlocks and the like was summary execution. Why did God chose such a method to deal with such a people?
    Because God knew that the annihilation of the vessel and the contents in the vessel would lead to peace in the society..
    There was no separation of flesh and blood when they stoned them to b death.
    Witchcraft is one of the works of the flesh and when a witch or wizard or warlock refuses to repent Command Disablement must be used.
    Command Disablement is always used by the enemy. It is a very common strategy to weaken ministers, disrupt church unity, and most of the times if the minister is a real threat to them they can even kill him..
    So using the method against opposing enemies is Biblical. as Paul had shown against Elymas.

  • Troy Day
    Reply January 25, 2020

    Troy Day

    Isara Mo the post by William DeArteaga is GREAT but I was mainly referring to the following comment by that you may have missed

    I ministered for many years in Brazil and sometimes came across Christians who believed it was appropriate to place curses on others who were trying to curse them. This is not something I would agree with or encourage anybody to practice. My understanding of the matter is that we very possibly have the authority to do so, but that placing a curse on someone is not in alignment with Christ’s character and Kingdom. In Luke 9 when James and John wanted to call fire down from heaven on the Samaritans, no doubt remembering the Old Testament prophets, Jesus did not say that they couldn’t do that but rather, according to the KJV translations, said “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of”. The issue wasn’t one of authority but rather of attitude.

    I suspect this is the reason that we are commanded to bless those who curse us, with Paul emphasising “bless and do not curse” (Romans 12:14), as our objective must be the same as He “who wants all people to be saved” (1 Titus 2:4). If our actions cause a witch to drop dead we haven’t aligned ourselves with that mission! Personally, I have found that when people are targeting us with higher level occult activity, it is a wonderful opportunity to bless them back and often, when I have done this, the activity has quickly ceased.

    On the other hand, I agree that there can be occasions when we can command a situation to change, which isn’t directly cursing a person but rather allowing good instead of evil to occur. As an example, I remember once being stopped by a police roadblock in Rio which was obviously intended for the purpose of extortion. Due to having just picked up my car from the mechanic, the fire extinguisher in it had expired which would have given the cop an excuse to seize my car or, more probably, demand a bribe. As he asked to see the extinguisher, I remember the Brother Andrew story and asked the Lord to temporarily blind his eyes, even as I involuntarily said “oh, I think it’s expired”. The cop squinted at the extinguisher for a while before handing it back and letting me go, and, as it had just expired, I stopped at the first gas station and swapped it for a new one. On the way back, I passed the same roadblock and, as another cop was waving me down, the first one told him to let me go as he had already stopped me! I honestly don’t know exactly what happened but believe that an unjust situation of potential extortion was avoided as an answer to prayer (and it was a great object lesson for the young people from the slum who were with me at the time).

    My personal understanding of the Paul and Elymas story in Acts 13 is perhaps different to the standard interpretation of the event. This was Paul’s first missionary trip and the first recorded instance of public opposition to his preaching. I wonder if the new missionary Paul was recalling his own conversion experience when he himself had been in opposition to the gospel and was struck blind “for a time”, and perhaps expected that the same experience would produce the same result in Elymas. Scripture, of course, does not tell us what happened to him later on but we also don’t see Paul trying the same technique on anyone else. Maybe this was all part of his missionary training!

    Anyway, that’s just my take on this interesting, if somewhat controversial, topic.

    • Isara Mo
      Reply January 26, 2020

      Isara Mo

      Troy Day
      What is a curse and how is formed and sent to someone?
      The Kingdom. of darkness uses curses as bullets to steal kill and destroy their enemies.
      Curses sent from the dark world are evil words(fiery arrows) sent to an unsuspecting person to achieve a death a sickness a calamity a disaster etc etc.. And most of the times thru succeed in these errands..
      A Christian cannot send a curse to an unsuspecting person to kill them or destroy them or harm them in any way.
      But when it comes to issues of self defence when one is under severe enemy attack I feel no qualms in SENDING BACK the arrows being sent against me BACK TO SENDER..
      The arrows (words) wouldn’t be of my own making but will be like re packaging cynadie sent you and delivering it to the originator. This is the kind of “cursing” I do but I cannot kneel down and pray death or calamity or disaster befell my enemies because logically God wouldn’t even listen to these kind of prayers.
      Scriptures are abound whereby David who was continually in battles prayed like this//
      He wore CURSING as his garment; it entered into his body like water, into his bones like oil.
      May it be like a cloak wrapped about him, like a belt tied forever around him. May this be the Lord ’s payment to my accusers, to those who speak evil of me.
      Psalms 109:18‭-‬20 NIV
      Is this a curse?
      What about this//
      PAY BACK into the laps of our neighbors seven times the contempt they have hurled at you, Lord.
      Psalms 79:12 NIV
      //
      Is this a curse or cursing?.
      And this //
      Those who surround me proudly rear their heads; may the mischief of their lips engulf them. May burning coals fall on them; may they be thrown into the fire, into miry pits, never to rise.
      Psalms 140:9‭-‬10 NIV
      //
      Aren’t these the words of the annointed of the Lord?.
      When people teach others to “pray the Scriptures” should they pray NT verses or verses from the whole Bible?
      prayed like this //
      Hear us, our God, for we are despised. TURN THEIR INSULTS BACK on their own heads. Give them over as plunder in a land of captivity. Do not cover up their guilt or blot out their sins from your sight, for they have thrown insults in the face of the builders.
      Nehemiah 4:4‭-‬5 NIV
      //

    • Isara Mo
      Reply January 26, 2020

      Isara Mo

      Troy Day
      Jesus//
      “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you.
      Matthew 11:21‭-‬22 NIV//

    • Isara Mo
      Reply January 26, 2020

      Isara Mo

      Troy Day
      Jesus//
      The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.”
      Matthew 26:24 NIV
      //

    • Troy Day
      Reply January 27, 2020

      Troy Day

      Isara Mo you dont say much about the comment

  • Troy Day
    Reply March 5, 2020

    Troy Day

    I love this PROPHETIC BIBLE STUDY Isara Mo RichardAnna Boyce

  • Troy Day
    Reply May 31, 2020

    Troy Day

    RT William DeArteaga Very significantly, the mayor of Atlanta. Kaisha Bottoms, an African-American, and Democrat and her chief of police both plainly said this evening that the violence of the previous night (May 29th) was due to a systematic effort by outside agitators who specifically came to Atlantato create as much damage as possible. The mayor called them terrorists. Those statements are generally said by White folks and many times disregarded as racist talk. No, it is real. There are a well coordinated radical groups who wish extreme harm on America, some anarchists, others Marxists, all deeply demonized. The church needs to pray in the power of the spirit to disable these folks according do Acts 13 where St. Paul disabled the sorcerer Elymus.

    http://www.pentecostaltheology.com/ministry-of-displacing-demons-from-their-territories/

  • Reply May 31, 2020

    Rick Slotboom

    An interesting parallel, especially with respect to Ananias and Saffira in Acts 5 would be the fact that in rabbinical literatuur the General idea is that physical death atones for (severe) sin. You can find this idea in Hebrews too, esp. 10:26vv. Which teaches that after wilful sin no sacrifice for sin remains (are especially Hebrews 6, 10, 12, see also Paul’s remark at the end of the epistle to the Corinthians, where the one who is sleeping with his father’s wife is handed over to Satan that “If Anyone doesn’t love the Lord (=is living in gross sin) let him be accursed (anathema estoo)”). This is not for unbelievers (they will be forgiven if they repent and believe in Jesus), but saving discipline for christians living in gross immorality, which has it’s roots in the OT concept of sin ‘with high hand’ (deliberate) and can be traced throughout the Pseudepigrapha of OT as well.
    A very different parallel would be James McMillan who proclaimed a word of jugdment on a dishonest business partner who got him into great financial and legal trouble. After proclaming judgment (without any bitterness, leaving judgment in God’s hands) the other person was legally condemned and McMillan got his money back. James also writes about exploited workers, crying out for Justice. First of all, we need to keep our hearts right, secondly if judgment is needed, it is the Lord’s, not ours, thirdly, it’s about either saving discipline for others or to save is from a situation in which certain people get us into serious trouble. It is never a reason to practice a sort of ‘charismatic’ black Magic, to make out enemies drop dead, as some ‘christians’ are doing. I must also say that often, if you know that someone is using the occult against you, to bless and love them in return works well to see their work come to naught, all the while believing, praying and proclaming God’s protection. It probably also depends on the leading of the Holy Spirit to know what is appropriate to do in a certain situation.

  • Ray E Horton
    Reply May 31, 2020

    Ray E Horton

    Yes! We need to be bold in the spirit-realm.

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