I have often remarked that America is in
grave need of a revival. It is my contention that without a convicting, stirring move of
God our capability to touch other nations will eventually be drastically reduced - or
perhaps negated completely. I know that these words may sound negative to some for in the
natural world the idea of our prosperous nation ever playing an inconsequential role in
foreign missions seem improbable at best. But I firmly believe that for us to continue
being the catalyst of foreign missions we need to also concentrate on "home"
What could happen to make us ineffective? Considering our apparent
financial and military might the likelihood of any scenario removing America from the
foreground of world evangelism does seem improbable. But the question of just what level
of impact well have on the world for Christ is not in our hands. Its in
Gods and considering that the Church is in advancing stages of moral, spiritual and
theological decay the question is not what new plan or strategy well employ next.
The question is just how long will God allow us to continue at all?
America was founded by men the majority of whom had tremendous
Christian faith. Their vision was that the United States would be a lighthouse to the
nations beaming the goodness and mercy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the lost. But
again, without a revival led with heartfelt repentance how long can we sustain our place
as Gods lamp of truth to the world? It is for this reason that I have remained a
"home" missionary all these years.
As some of you know, I am planning at least one missions trip overseas
in the next year. A second trip is in the discussion stage as well but after 22+ years of
ministry, my heart and focus has been and continues to be "home" missions - and
for good reason.
As burdened as I have become with the lives of those in places like
Thailand, China and the sixty or so countries politically controlled by Islamic doctrine,
my concerns have been focused on our culture. Reading the Scriptures and then reading the
newspapers tell the story clearly. Without a change in our collective heart condition we
are headed for certain disaster as the protecting hand of God continues to lift off of our
nation in judgment of our godless ideals, greed and sin. Note too that without honest
repentance Canada will be right there reaping the rewards of sin with us.
I dont relish reminding you but Psalm 9:17 declares clearly that
the wicked and the nations that forget God are destined for Hell. But thank God there is
It seems to me that if ever there were a need for "home"
missionaries, that time is now. This is why we are among the number of men and women in
America whom God has called to preach the power of the cross and to give an unwavering
answer (an apologia - gk) to every man. (I Peter 3:15)
There is no doubt that the Church is in trouble here in America. The
news is not all bad though. There are positive signs happening as well and we are
making a difference. However, nearly every day it seems that I read something that
indicates the Church sinking deeper into the predicted End-Time apostasy while at the same
time the cults lead the unsuspecting right into Satans arms. Perhaps worse is the
growing apathy apparent in the lives of so many Christians today. Sin doesnt trouble
us; spiritual things are secondary and all the while the cults seem to move unchecked by
Recently I was in Missouri and was having a meal and fellowship with a
pastor and two fellow ministers when eight Mormon missionaries paraded by in
the restaurant. I took this as an act of defiance orchestrated by the Prince of Darkness
aimed at simply intimidating us. It was as if Satan was saying, "Look what Im
going to do with these nice, clean young men. How will you stop me?"
My immediate reaction was to get up and engage them in a loving yet
straight forward apologetic conversation. What struck me though was this question: who
in the community where I was would be able to fend off the sweet-sounding yet demonic
gospel these boys would sincerely present on doorsteps in the surrounding neighborhoods?
More so, who would be able to reach through the slick veneer of Mormonism and touch any of
these Mormon kids with the authentic Gospel and the Jesus of the Bible?
I knew the answer was that there would be precious few souls in
town who could effectively dialog with these trained and schooled Mormon missionaries.
Perhaps more disconcerting is that only a few more residents would recognize the peril of
what Mormonism itself represents.
The proliferation of the cults and occult in our culture today is
unlike anything seen in modern times. It is paramount that Christians understand why they
believe what they believe and know how to defend their faith and dialog with those around
Along side the need for each of us to be apologists for our faith is
the need to be schooled in polemics. This is the ability to expose the
falsity of cults and other religious systems which lead people away from the true God.
One does not have to become an expert in all of the cults. In fact, to
do so may be a risky spiritual proposition for anyone not specifically called out by God
into this kind of ministry. However, if a cult is operating in your vicinity or if a
friend or family member has fallen prey to a particular group or teaching we Christians
need to do better than the cliché that its "of the devil" if we expect to
see a captive set free from Satans cultic clutches.
This is why TAKE A STAND! MINISTRIES exists - to give reasons
for faith and answers to every man of the hope we hold in Jesus Christ! Were about
the business of training "home" missionaries who will make an impact in the
culture for Jesus. I encourage you to get prepared, know what you believe and be ready
when the cults come through your neighborhood. Dont wait until they knock on your
door and only wish you had an answer which might turn a Mormon or Jehovahs Witness
to the Savior.
Visit our newly designed Information Center and Newsletter Archive
for articles and help.
Hi Eric! I heard you on a late radio program that aired on 670 AM, Denver. I am a
Christian with a concern for a friend that lives up in Elk, WA. She proclaims to be an
"animal communicator," and I had heard you say something to the effect of a high
concentration of "spiritists" up there in WA. Do you have any more info on this?
I wonder if this is why she moved up there from Colorado. I have been trying to witness to
her these many years. Please also pray for me against any curse or incantation her or her
little friends may bring against me. Thanks! DJ
Greetings and thanks for writing!
There are many spiritualists in the Northwest but they are certainly not limited to this
area. I have spoken in a church in Elk, WA several years ago and though I do not remember
anything particularly "New Age-eee" about it, it is a fairly remote area North
Animal necromancy is becoming more prominent in spiritualist circles and is obviously one
of Satan's deceptions used to entice and finally destroy lives.
As far as you are concerned, as a Christian I encourage you to make certain that there are
no avenues or doors open in your life where Satan could gain a foothold. He wants us to
fear his evil work and attacks and certainly revels in any paranoia so cast that off. I
encourage you to take a positive, proactive stance against any intrusion of the Evil One.
Take the authority of the Believer against the forces of darkness and apply the power of
blood of Jesus Christ and directly against the enemy, putting him on notice that your life
is clean according to the sacrifice of the Lamb and that he has no right over you. I
believe you should pray that the Lord release your friend up in Elk and that you need to
put Satan on notice that you are laying claim to her life as well.
If the idea of proclaiming the power of the blood or exerting the authority of the
Believer is in any way new or foreign to you, I invite you to read my book Disarming
the Powers of Darkness online, in particular the chapter on the Blood of
Christ (see http://www.ericbarger.com/disarming/disarmingtoc.htm
God bless you and let me know if there is anything else we can do. I have prayed for you
tonight and for your friend at Elk too.
- Eph 6:12...
Magic The Gathering
Dear Sir, I heard you on Noah Hutchings' radio program! (Southwest Radio Church) I
would like to ask you about the card game, Magic the Gathering. Our married son is an avid
player of that game. So much so, that he has traveled a few times to compete on their
"pro tour". Five years ago he was baptized into Jesus Christ. He says that one
motive for his continued participation in Magic the Gathering is...he has an opportunity
there to witness for the Lord to other participants who aren't churchgoers. Our son has
told us he competes in the Name of Jesus. He says most of the competitors are not openly
on the dark side spiritually, and some are Christians. My wife & I don't know that
much about Magic the Gathering. Our son has said he's not involved in any spellcasting
with the game. His opinion is...he could just as well be playing another strategy game
like chess with them. Although he looks for opportunities to share the Gospel with others,
we would of course be concerned if our son unknowingly is being misled into dangerous
occultism via this game. I myself sense a low-key underlying darkness in the retail card
shop where Magic cards are sold (and which hosts local competitions). Any thoughts you
have on Magic the Gathering and/or advice you might offer in regards to this matter would
Thanks and God bless, Doug
Thanks for writing. I hope I can be of help and give you some perspective.
I too have the same uneasy spiritual feelings in the card shops. I have experienced this
every time I have been in one of the shops. There is no doubt a fair amount of demonic
activity going on both in these shops and in some of the games in the "Magic"
However, that in itself does not necessarily answer your questions. I believe your
concerns are warranted. Though your son is grown and married I believe that the violence
and occultism of this kind of game should be enough to spur Christians away from them.
However, I know that many Christians are indeed involved. This may be especially true when
one is adept at the game as your son appears to be. Its hard to break lose and its easy to
justify one's continued involvement.
I encourage you read the emails I answered at in the Jan 20, 2005 newsletter (http://www.ericbarger.com/emailers/update1-20-05.htm).
Though "Magic The Gathering" is only mentioned in passing (though powerfully) by
one of the writers, take note of the philosophy I follow in the newsletter that the Bible
teaches us to avoid every kind of evil and that we cannot "Christianize" evil.
Your son's idea that he is a witness by playing the game and that its no different from
other strategy games is flawed in at least ways.
First, the Scripture forbids acting in a way that is unscriptural or "like the
world" - even to be able to be a witness. I don't know your son's heart but in times
past I have heard that same statement from my daughter and I believe it was usually to
help her justify what she was doing more than her desire to be a true witness for the
Lord. You have to be judge for yourself what the case may be with your son.
Second, as I present in the answers I give in the emails in the Jan. 20 newsletter, God's
word is clear that some things are off limits for Christians. The Occult is certainly one
of them. Carefully read my answer to the first email in the Jan 20 letter, taking note of
the Deuteronomy 18 passage and the Hebrew word for "abomination" there.
I'm not even commenting on the actual game "Magic The Gathering" here. Because
there are so many different games like "Magic" today I think its important that
we examine the philosophy behind the games. By the way "Magic the Gathering" is
distributed by "Wizards of the Coast" who also own the rights to "Dungeons
and Dragons" and "Pokemon." This is certainly an indicator that
"Magic" may be more than just harmless strategy.
Study this and please write back if you need more. I'll be glad to help if I can.
I am so glad that you put it out there for us to hear how it really is...all too many
times us as Christians (that say we love Christ) ignore the should be obvious. I have been
struggling with Halloween for several years. I did however take mine trick or treating
last year, but definitely decided not to this year or the coming years.
It is hard to get away from all the parties though when you have
children. We did have a "Fall Party" that seemed ok. I am not even sure about
that, but I do not want to push my girls over the edge. We did not dress up at all, just
played some cute games and shared candy...what are your feelings on that? I don't want
anything I do from here on out to be an abomination to my Lord! I definitely don't want to
invite evil into my home....not even with a jack-o-lantern.
Some of my friends and family think I have gone too far..."it is
just innocent fun". I know you have heard that before, but that is when evil likes to
creep in, right?
Anyway, thanks for your uprightousness and clear thinking that comes
from the HOLY SPIRIT!!!!!!
Bless you Amanda!
I encourage you to keep taking biblical stands in a loving and non-legalistic
spirit...regardless of how some others may think you've gone too far. God blesses our
Thanks for the kind words. They are an encouragement to me.
Psalm 37:23 always,
Incites from Inside - Catholicism
Today I was reading your newsletter and stumbled upon your article on
I am a missionary in Tarapoto, Peru and write a monthly devotional that goes out to over
300 people around the world. Recently, I too had been questioned as to my heart possibly
being tainted against Catholicism. My response was the same as yours.
Unlike you, I had been raised a Catholic through to my second year of
college where I also attended a Catholic University. I was married in a Catholic Church
and even sent my children to Catholic school for two years. From very young I remember
wanting something but never knowing what it was. I would go into the church and pray while
my friends were on the playground playing during recess. I would look at the statues
hoping I would see some sign of life. That God would consider me to be one of his special
children to hear Mary speak or see Jesus bleed real blood. I felt empty inside but I
hungered for something real.
My grandmother's sister was a nun and I remember thinking that maybe
that was the answer to getting closer to God. After spending time with her I realized that
being a nun would not make me holy.
After several years into my first marriage I turned from God.
Discouraged with all the hypocrisy and constant changing of doctrines, I kept feeling that
something was not right, something was missing. No matter how much I went to church I
continued in my sins. I was never ever taught to read the bible. I was never taught that
my sins could be forgiven only though the blood of Jesus or that I could truly have a
relationship with him.
One day at the age of 33 someone shared the truth of Jesus with me. I
began to hunger for more but not having a church to go to I fell heavily into the sin of
adultery and within years my marriage dissolved. In 1993, our Lord brought a woman into my
path that led me to a wonderful spirit filled gospel preaching church. The minute I walked
into the door I knew I found home. Today I am married to a wonderful God-fearing man and
together we are serving our Lord in Peru.
The primary religion here is Catholicism and as you shared in your
article it is a religion mixed with all the cultural witchcraft/idol worship practices of
the jungle. My spirit grieves as I see men and women lost in the throes of idolatry. Good
Friday, for example, is a major feast day. In the evening a funeral procession forms.
People gather holding candles and begin a march throughout the village accompanied by a
funeral dirge following a statue of Jesus in a glass coffin with a statue of Mary behind
him. Easter Sunday is like any other Sunday. There is no emphasis given or parade
celebrating the fact that he is Risen and Alive. Mary is always the last statue to be seen
in any celebration. In October women wear purple dresses with long sleeves in a fabric
that is not conduit to the heat of the jungle in celebration of "Lord of the
Miracles". If they suffer enough by wearing these special dresses they may possibly
receive their miracle. this also produces a sin of pride since they wear these everywhere
and project themselves as being somewhat special because of this sacrifice. Not unlike
Christians who wear their fasting face to appear more holy.
I have been burdened to pray for our Lord to set them free from such
bondage and lies. Mary cannot save us. She did not die for our sins. In fact, she was one
of the followers of Jesus found in the upper room who received the baptism of the Holy
Spirit and boldly went out proclaiming the "Good News". Never once in the bible
does it ever say for us to worship her. I think it would grieve her to see God's children
so misled, worshipping her instead of the one who died for her and for us and for the
I have friends who are Catholic but who have found truth and seek to know the one true
God. I love all people but as you put it so well, I hate Satan and the lies he deceives
people with. No religion or denomination holds the exclusive rights to heaven or eternal
life. It is only through the blood of Jesus that we gain entry into the Kingdom of God.
I don't know why I am writing you. I just needed to share.
I once was blind but now I see. Since dedicating my life to Christ, I
have been filled with such peace and joy. Regardless the circumstances He is always with
me. I pray for those caught in the throes of any religion that professes to be the one
true religion, that does not hold up to Scripture and that condones idol worship and the
worship of man above all others.
I pray that light would come and the scales from their eyes removed.
That they would see truth and follow Christ. I pray our Lord continues to give you the
words to share in boldness and that we too would continue to speak His truth to a sinful
dying world. God forgive us for our complacency as Christians.
May God arise and His enemies be scattered. Thank you for allowing me
to share. God bless you...Karen
What a testimony...wow. What a terrific and insightful letter. I pray that your ministry
touches untold multitudes for the glory of God.
Please stay in touch and let us know how we can assist you, if only to be able to pray
specifically for you.
Bless you my sister,
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