Why Akathleptos?

Why Akathleptos? Because it means Uncontainable. God is infinite. Hence, the whole universe cannot contain Him. The term also refers to the incomprehensibility of God. No man can know everything about God. We can know Him personally but not exhaustively, not even in Heaven.

Why Patmos? Because the church is increasingly marginalized and exiled from the culture.

Why Pen-Names? So the focus is on the words and not who wrote them. We prefer to let what we say stand on its own merit. There is precedent in church history for this - i.e., the elusive identity of Ambrosiaster who wrote in the 4th century A.D.

“Truth is so obscured nowadays, and lies so well established, that unless we love the truth we shall never recognize it." Blaise Pascal

Thursday, November 5, 2015

The Great Exorcism Boom

The Catholic Herald reports here on the explosion of exorcisms around the world.

From Manila to Mexico City Catholic priests are leading a new and sometimes spectacular crusade against demonic possession

Exorcism has become so popular worldwide that now it’s not only performed on tormented individuals but also on entire nations. A few months ago Mexico, the second largest Catholic country, was exorcised of its demons in an unprecedented rite of exorcismo magno performed in secret in the city of San Luis Potosí.

On May 20, the renowned Spanish exorcist Fr José Antonio Fortea, author of the book El Exorcismo Magno, joined Cardinal Juan Sandoval Íñiguez, Archbishop Emeritus of Guadalajara, and a cadre of trained exorcists to perform the maximum type of exorcism, reserved for nations and dioceses, on the Mexican Republic itself. Fr Fortea explained that exorcismo magno is “useful in situations in which great violence has been unleashed in a country”.


As I wrote earlier here, there has always been a strong association between between mind/mood-altering drugs and the demonic. What does it say about America that we are now the largest drug market on planet earth?

"Drug overdose deaths are the leading cause of injury death in the United States, ahead of motor vehicle deaths and firearms (deaths)," the Drug Enforcement Agency announced yesterday. In 2013, the most recent year for which data is available, 46,471 people in the United States died from drug overdoses, and more than half of those deaths were caused by prescription painkillers and heroin. That compares with the 35,369 who died in motor vehicle crashes and 33,636 who died from firearms, as tallied by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As I reported earlier here, Clinton E. Arnold, Professor of New Testament at Talbot School of Theology, comments here in his research paper entitled "Early Church Catechesis And New Christians Classes In Contemporary Evangelicalism" on his conviction of the superficiality of the training & teaching of most new believers that the church conducts today. He notes four key features of the historical catechumenate from the early church that involved 2-3 years of instruction and mentoring for each new Christian:
  1. Immersion in the Word of God.
  2. Teach them the central doctrines of the faith.
  3. Spiritual and moral formation.
  4. Deliverance ministry
The fourth focus of the early church - deliverance ministry - is altogether absent from much of today's evangelical church. As evil proliferates and our culture plunges head-long into barbarism, the church alone (and only the church) is empowered to effectively combat the forces of darkness. Everything and everyone else is futile. As worthy as social programs may be, they are ineffective. As necessary as political involvement is, it is useless in this battle. While the Catholic Church formally recognizes the urgent need and is moving towards the sound of the guns, many Evangelical Protestants unfortunately have their heads buried in the sand. We can pretend all is well in our fortress churches and that we are safe from the marauding evil as the culture disintegrates ... but we will inevitably and ultimately discover there are consequences for us as well, just as the church in ISIS-controlled territory is now experiencing. With the forces of darkness ferociously storming the wire of our culture, many Christians are naively on KP duty instead of manning the guns on the perimeter.

In 4 decades, I have personally witnessed multiple times, the spectacular freeing power of the gospel from deeply-embedded bondage to evil. For those that need it, I earlier recommended here a balanced resource on spiritual warfare - Karl Payne's book, "Spiritual Warfare:  Christians, Demonization and Deliverance".

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. (Eph 6:12)

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