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Paranormal Survivors

Paranormal Survivor is now in its second season on Destination America.  This show interviews eyewitnesses to strange encounters, often bringing in experts in the field to explain supernatural events.  In recent years, reality television has shined light on topics that in previous years was considered taboo or too bizarre to consider.  However, one of the first documented cases of paranormal survivors comes right out of the Bible.

One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?”- Acts 19:15

Casting out demons in the middle of the first century became a common experience for apostles and disciples of Jesus.  This fascination led some outside the faith to begin to emulate the apostle Paul.  According to Luke, seven sons and a Jewish chief priest were in the middle of an exorcism when a demon manifested itself.  The individual who was possessed was filled with multiple spirits.  Since the sons of Sceva were powerless without a personal relationship with God or access to the Holy Spirit, they were attacked and fled.

Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding, Acts 19:16.

A generation ago, churches were afraid to bring up the topic of demons, dismissing it as an exaggeration or waste of time.  However, in this age of spirituality, people are opening doors for the Devil and demons to come into their lives.  Subsequently, manifestations of ghosts and spirits as detailed on the show Paranormal Survivor are not as uncommon as it use to be.  Therefore, depending upon where you move to, work or visit, don’t be surprised if you encounter the paranormal.  Until then, fast, pray and draw near to God.

by Jay Mankus

Witnesses of the Holy Spirit

If you have ever witnessed an accident, there are several things which must take place before you can leave.  The police must be contacted, vehicles must be moved off to the side and witnesses need to give their account of what happened.  The authorities are trying to create a 360 degree picture of the scene.  When all of the accounts are written down, an accurate perspective is usually derived.

We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him, Acts 5:32.

When it comes to testifying about that which is unseen, accumulating information is much more difficult.  Perhaps a prayer spoken up to heaven is answered in a relatively quick time.  Or a financial need is met in a supernatural manner.  Some may even see a miracle unfold which defies logic.  If you have encountered any of these scenarios, maybe you have been a witness of the Holy Spirit.

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 1 Corinthians 6:19.

The apostle Paul puts a different spin on this topic.  Relying on Jesus’ words to his disciples in John 16, Paul suggests this counselor can actually enter your body.  This Holy Ghost transformed his brethren from scaredy cats to bold evangelists.  This display of faith likely inspired a generation of believers.  Although the presence of the Holy Spirit may be rare in these days and times, don’t be surprised if you become a witness to the Holy Spirit.

by Jay Mankus

The Anointing

Sometimes there are things in life that are difficult to explain.  While you may try to verbalize specific details, unless you experience, feel or sense it, no one will likely believe you.  Earlier on, I disregarded such a notion.  Yet now, after stumbling upon the words of a Psalmist, I have come to acknowledge the anointing of God is real.

He strengthens the bars of your gates and blesses your people within you, Psalm 147:13.

The opposite of this force is similar to the Haunting, a show on Destination America.  Although many people remain skeptics, certain properties, homes or land are subject to demons, ghosts or spirits which dwell on these premises.  Once limited to documentaries and horror movies, powers of darkness has risen up to make their domain a living hell on earth.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms, Ephesians 6:12.

In view of these unwelcomed visitors, its essential for individuals to begin to ask God for a special anointing.  Home owners can invite members of their church to dedicate and prayer over newly acquired property.  Meanwhile, prayer walks along the borders of businesses and land owners can serve as a hedge of protection for those who believe in the power of the Holy Spirit.  Finally, setting aside time to prayer for children and family members, especially inside of their own room can have life altering effects.  May readers embrace this concept and be inspired to practice it so that the anointing of God will be fanned into flame to negate any demonic influences currently keeping you from living the abundant life Jesus promised, John 10:10.

by Jay Mankus

 

 

Behind the Mystery of Haunted Places

The series A Haunting began in 2005 on the Discovery Channel.  Nearly a decade later, Destination America produced a 7th season this year, captivating audiences with paranormal activity.  As a casual viewer, the idea of demonic entities, exorcisms and haunted houses challenges my biblical worldview.  However, there are answers in the Bible to explain the reality of haunted places.

First of all, the disciples refer to ghosts several times in the 4 gospels, thinking Jesus was a ghost on a few occasions.  Why would the Bible’s authors talk about ghosts and refer to the Holy Spirit as a holy ghost if they did not exist.  Secondly, demons were a daily obstacle to Jesus and his 3 year ministry on earth.  If you get a chance to study the gospel of Matthew particularly, you will find to demons and or spirit entities can cause epileptic seizures, loss of hearing, illness, muteness and paralysis.  Although Hollywood may over-dramatize scenes, spiritual darkness can hover over specific homes, properties or nations.

Take for instance the encounter within Daniel 10:13.  The prince of Persia, a demonic stronghold in this region, fought Daniel for 21 straight days.  If this is true, then places around the world, especially those with a history of civil war, continue to reign today, holding their citizens hostage.  While people may eventually flee a haunted home, property or kingdom, these spirits remain living and active.  If I could unlock the answers to this phenomena, I would likely become a wealthy man, but for now if you want to know more, find resources on spiritual mapping.  Like modern GPS systems, spiritual mapping often detects and exposes the secrets behind haunted places.

by Jay Mankus

 

A Mere Phantom

When you look into a mirror, what do you see? Does pain from your past come into focus? Is the stress from life visible on your face? Or does a lack of faith leave you slumping over, doubtful that you’ll achieve anything significant in the future? From my vantage point, I feel like a mere phantom, unable to capture the person I want to be.

Apparently, King David struggled with a similar dilemma in Psalm 39:6.  As he reflected on his days on earth, what he saw was disappointing.  Essentially, David described his life as a phantom, roaming to and fro, like a ghostly spirit unable to find rest for their soul.  His son Solomon echoed David’s sentiment, recognizing that laboring and toiling on this planet is meaningless, Ecclesiastes 1:1-11.

If this is true, what can one do to reclaim joy?  Perhaps, you need to have a private meeting with Jesus, John 3:1-2, to see what’s holding you back.  From here, individuals need a daily dose of the Holy Spirit, like 5 Hour Energy Drinks to move beyond this material world, John 4:13-14.  Yet, to escape the phantom inside of you, stepping out in faith is necessary to begin utilizing the gifts created inside of you, Romans 12:3-8.  Don’t let a low self-esteem paralyze your progress. Rather, begin to see your reflection through the eyes of Christ, 2 Corinthians 5:21.

Please feel free to share any words of encouragement to those who don’t like the person they see in the mirror.

by Jay Mankus

         

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Let The Redeemed Say No

Anyone can say yes, especially toward a proposition relating to sex.  In reality, it takes a strong man or woman to take a stand, going against the temptations of this life, 1 John 2:15-17.  Therefore, its essential for God’s children to walk according a different beat, Matthew 7:13.  The time is now for followers to proclaim, “let the redeemed say no!”

 

The fifth chapter of Galatians contains 2 great winds, pushing in opposite directions.  While one can guide you to safety, the other is set on pushing you over a cliff, causing your conscience to become disabled.  Compromise is rolling into town, with a gentle breeze of “can I get some?”  Meanwhile, common sense is holding its ground, like a trade wind, constantly whispering its motto to hearts and minds willing to change.  This spiritual weather system is on display in Galatians 5:16-17.

The ghost of Eve walks these streets, knowing what’s right, but curious, intrigued by the unknown.   Demons and evil spirits play Trick or Treat, handing out over-hyped Halloween Candy.  Inside these Turkish delights lie a cold heart, like a wicked witch with dishonest intentions.  Invisible to the naked eye, guardian angels intervene, trying to break the spell souls have fallen prey under.  With the conclusion of this tug of war no where on the horizon, the Holy Spirit provides one last message to ears that can hear, “let the redeemed say no!”

by Jay Mankus

Inquiring Minds Want Answers

One of the most difficult tasks I have ever been assigned was trying to teach Junior High students the Bible for 5 years.  If I wrote down all the questions asked during my lectures, I could have written a thorough sex ed curriculum.  While some of my students were simply trying to waste time, others asked great questions that needed a reply.  When inquiring minds want answers, those in authority or leadership positions must feed these hungry souls.

As I started to read the Old Testament again, memories of these questions reverberated within my mind.  Once deemed foolish, I am beginning to share a similar interest into the mysteries of the Bible.  For example, why is nakedness now equated with shame, Genesis 2:25?  Did Cain marry his sister, Genesis 4:17 or did God created other females beside Eve, Genesis 5:1-2?  Does Genesis 4:10 explain the concept of ghosts, haunted houses and dead spirits which still dwell on certain properties?  Finally, does Genesis 6:1-4 refer to aliens, fallen angels or mixed marriages between giants and normal human beings?

I wish I could answer these questions with a sense of certainty and clarity, but I can’t.  Theologians vary, debating these and other topics for centuries.  All I can do is provide my best guess based upon my years of study and training.

1) Marriage is a sacred covenant that you make to another man or woman.  Once you consecrate this bond, there should be no shame among one another.

2) Based upon the time line of Leviticus 18, it appears God allowed intermarriage initially until the population of Israel was large enough.  Once written and communicated by Moses, this type of act was prohibited.

3) Since Jesus and his disciple use the term ghost throughout all 4 gospels, it appears that ghosts and spirits did exist by the first century.  Therefore, the growing accounts of paranormal activity today suggest what happened to Abel certainty does occur.

4) Before answering this final question, Genesis 6:1-4 is one of the most controversial passages in the Bible.  If you link the great pyramids of Egypt, the great wall of China and other architectural wonders of the world, some credit this advanced knowledge to either aliens or fallen angels.  However, the Tower of Babel is erected due to an one world language, making nothing impossible for mankind according to Genesis 11:3-6.  Thus, like many mysteries, you will have to wait until the after life to know for sure.

As inquiring minds send me more questions, I will try my best to answer each from a biblical perspective.  Continue to following the words of 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22, testing everything you hear or read with the Bible.

by Jay Mankus

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