Items For Prayer And Praise
By Lois J. Stucky
The night was dark and damp. The weary missionary lying in his sleeping bag on the ground was attempting to get some rest. He was bent on a mission in this country, which opposed Christianity and the efforts of such as himself. Suddenly he was jolted wide awake by the barking of dogs evidently headed in his direction. Quickly he scrambled out of the sleeping bag and jumped to his feet. Hardly had he done this than there appeared three large attack dogs followed by an officer. The two men stood tensely facing one another. Then the officer gave a command and the dogs rushed toward the missionary. Though trembling with fright, the missionary shouted out: "In the mighty name of Jesus Christ, I command you to stop! Flee in the name of Jesus!"
The dogs stopped and turned, tucking their tails between their legs. Yelping in fear, they tore off into the dark night. The officer stood there momentarily in amazement and fright, and then he turned and headed off on the trail of the dogs. The missionary gathered his possessions and loaded them into his car. Then he headed on to complete his mission.
One can only imagine the praise and thanksgiving to God that welled up in the missionary's heart. This mighty One whom He serves has authority over evil, and He has given to His servants who will receive it the privilege of exercising this authority for the glory of His Name and for the advancing of His Kingdom.
Another Herald Reader Writes
The zealous street preacher was bold and fearless in his proclamation of the Gospel on the streets of his city in England. One day he encountered a warlock (male witch) who became very angry because of the preacher's witness. "You must stop this!" the warlock insisted.
When the preacher said he would not stop, the warlock thundered back: "I will stop you! I will make an effigy and will pierce it with a needle where the heart is. As I do this, you will die of heart attack."
The preacher boldly told him, "God will protect me. I will not die."
With great conviction the warlock countered: "Oh, yes you will! It worked with others. It will work with you."
"This was about ten years ago, and God did protect me, praise His holy Name!" concludes the preacher. "I had no fear at all, only God's assurance."
Faith in God's promises to protect and faith in the protection of the blood of Jesus are vital armaments for God's servants on the front lines of advance today.
Not all battles with the powers of darkness are as dramatic and obvious as are the above. We often do not realize we are under attack by the enemy. The first time I proofread the article, "The Authority of the Believer," I felt an almost overpowering sense of sleepiness all the way through the reading. Much of the time as I read I stood or walked slowly back and forth to keep awake to read. When it was time for the second reading another day, sleepiness started to overcome me again. It was early in the day and this was abnormal. I strongly resisted the spirit of sleepiness that was attacking me. Following that I read the lengthy article without any further trouble.
Use Divine Wisdom
A word of instruction in the battle with powers of darkness which a veteran missionary father in Africa gave to his two sons growing up and entering into service there was: "First submit yourselves to God and then resist the devil." This is very Scriptural. See James 4:7. Assurance is given that the devil will flee.
A Herald reader tells that she was called to help pray for a young lady whom several of her friends were helping spiritually. Although the young lady seemed to want to follow Christ, she was associated with people and places that opened the way for evil spirits to influence and possess her. On this occasion, as our friend came to help pray, the one who had called her paused before they entered the room to pray briefly that the Lord would be a wall of fire around them to protect them (Zech. 2:5).
Stepping into the room, they found the young lady with her eyes closed, thrashing around on the bed. Eventually she tore the bed sheet beyond repair. She rolled off onto the floor and thrashed around there. She would thrust out at those praying and resisting the devilish spirit that was speaking through her.
After a time the young lady became quiet and began to softly sing a Christian song. It was obvious that the battle had been won and the captive loosed from the evil spirit. She told her friends that while her eyes were closed and while she was thrashing about under the power of the enemy, she could see a wall of fire. She dared not reach through to grasp those praying as she tried to do, for she could feel the heat and would have been burned. Surely God was a wall of fire about His servants.
Children Under Attack
The enemy is evil enough to take advantage of the young and the weak. We know from Scripture of children who were troubled by evil spirits. See Mark 9:17-27 and Matthew 15:22-28. An evangelist tells of two children of a minister who were strangely affected. One was unable to talk, although past the age when a child normally begins to talk. The other behaved strangely at times, acting almost like an animal. It was learned that the family had lived in a house which had previously been occupied by a minister who openly practiced spiritism. After prayer for deliverance for the children, both promptly returned to normalcy.
Another preacher tells of his son being troubled with nightmares and bad dreams. The parents prayed for him and placed him "under Jesus' Blood." There was great improvement.
In another instance a hyperactive child was prayed for by a counsellor with knowledge of demonic influence. The improvement was dramatic.
One must use care in praying for children not to frighten them. They might be prayed for while asleep. Or if they are awake, a parent may hold them during prayer, to reassure them. It might be well to explain very simply what is taking place and to take care not to use language that would frighten them.
Parents are wise to pray daily for the protection of the blood of Jesus as they send their children off to school, etc. A report came to us this week from a nearby city where there are several Satanic "churches," that a child at public school was performing in the presence of other children a satanic dance, perhaps learned at "church." Who knows what demonic influence innocent children might come under as they mimic these dances to the devil!
Read and Study This Issue
How different today's situation will become if more Christians rise and take the place of authority that God has provided for the church! Christ is not only the glorious Head of the church, but He is a very personal Saviour and Lord, friend and Bridegroom of the soul. Christ's indwelling to the extent of full possession is the secret of greatest success in serving Him. And Christ within is the fullest satisfaction of the heart's deepest needs and highest desires. He is "altogether lovely."