Dreaming Truth

Day Seven

I had a dream that faded almost as soon as I was awake.  All I remember of it were impressions: I had something embarrassing happen to me, but I don’t know what.  The devil tried to make me feel ashamed for the embarrassment, I don’t remember how.  I shrugged off embarrassment, and the Lord told me (the only thing that I remember clearly): “Where pride is absent, grace abounds.”  Perhaps that means that hurt pride results in shame.

I don’t always dream about the devil, but when I do, I tend to remember it.  A couple of times, I’m sure that’s because he was actually there.  I will tell you about them, not because we should be fixated on the devil—not at all!  But I think these particular dreams are instructive.

The first time I dreamed about the devil I was 17 years old, born again, and newly filled with the Holy Spirit.  However, I didn’t really know or understand how to walk with the Lord.  I had been raised in the Episcopal Church, and made my decision to follow Jesus the night before my Confirmation.  But I just didn’t know that we could pray spontaneous prayers, so when I had a need (sick relative or whatever), I looked it up in the Book of Common Prayer and prayed from the book.  But when I was 17 my parents started going to a Charismatic Episcopalian prayer group.  They invited me, too.  I had never heard people pray like this, and I loved it.

A man from the prayer group was involved with the Full Gospel Businessmen, and invited us to come to a meeting.  The man who preached talked the whole time about the Holy Spirit.  I was fascinated.  We Episcopalians always called Him “The Holy Ghost.”  And He was the mysterious member of the Godhead.  But this man talked like he actually knew the Holy Spirit.  At the end of his sermon, he invited anybody wanting to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit to come down front.  I had no idea what that was, but I wanted it.  So I went down front.  I hadn’t known it at the time, but my parents were right behind me.  The man laid his hand on my head and immediately I had strange words in my mind.  I hadn’t known what to expect, nobody had told me.  But the man said, “Speak those words.”  So I did.

The first devil dream came shortly afterwards.  I dreamed that I was in my bedroom, with everything exactly in place, just as I had left it before going to sleep.  He entered my room by the door and walked around to the side of the bed where I was laying.  In the dream, my skin jumped up to goosebumps and I was very scared.  Then he grinned and sat down on the bed beside me.  I felt the mattress compress under him.  That’s when I woke up, and I could still feel the mattress compressed where he had sat.  I was very frightened and completely weirded-out.

Now, I understand why the devil visited me in that dream: he was trying to catch up with God as usual, but he was too late.

He showed up at other times in dreams through the years, doing scary things like walking around my bed in my new house.  The floor in the bedroom was linoleum, and although I didn’t see him, I could hear his hoof-steps on the floor.  Another time I saw my Bible get pulled out of the bookcase by invisible hands and put in backwards (spine inward).  But sitting on my bed was the scariest thing of all.

This winter while I was home visiting my family for Christmas break I had the first devil dream I had had in a many years.  Again, in my dream I could see my room exactly as I had left it before going to sleep.  I saw the devil standing by my window, backlit by the landscape lights outside.  Immediately, I turned my back to him and in my dream went right back to sleep.  A few weeks later I heard about how Martin Luther handled the devil’s nighttime visits.  He wrote:

When the devil comes at night to worry me, this is what I say to him: “Devil, I have to sleep now. That is God’s commandment, for us to work by day and sleep at night.”

Ha!  Just what I did, but I didn’t talk to him.

A week or two later, I had another devil dream, and this one paralleled the first one.  My room was exactly as I had left it before sleep.  The devil came in the door and walked around the bed to where I was sleeping and sat down on the bed.  Again I felt the mattress compress under him.  But this time instead of fear, I got angry.  I told him to get out of my room.  And I woke up.

As I observed above, I believe that the devil is just trying to catch up with God.  But he can’t.  I heard a Joseph Prince sermon recently that I wrote about in I Will Make You Know.  Basically he pointed out that where you see the devil interfering, God has already been at work blessing you.  Therefore, give God praise and thanksgiving for blessing you in the area where you see trouble.  You can read it in more detail by following the link.

Just imagine the trouble we could give the devil if only we really understood our inheritance as God’s children.  We were made to live as more than conquerors, so why are we living ordinary lives?  In the movie Superman II (1982), Superman gives up his superpowers for love.  Very romantic, and not so much different than God becoming a human because of love for us.  But many Christians are living Clark Kent lives that are excruciatingly ordinary, when we have been given the right to live the supernatural lives we were made to live.

This is day 7 of my fast for understanding of these End Times, and how better to prepare for what’s ahead.  I believe that living in God’s supernatural empowerment is key.  God is good!

Touching the Hem of His Garment

I had an interesting conversation with God one night recently.  It was after attending a Charismatic Catholic cell group.  Even though they are charismatic (filled with the Holy Spirit), they still go to places like Lourdes, France to seek healing.  They also pray the Rosary—which is to the Virgin Mary (though they say that they don’t worship her as some do), and they still venerate the saints (though I don’t think they pray to them).

Many evangelical Christians, knowing that the Catholic Church is Babylon the Great from Revelations, believe that we should be evangelizing Catholics.  I also believe that the Catholic Church is Babylon the Great, but there are born-again, spirit-filled Christian believers in the Catholic Church.  Some who were born again in the Catholic Church left immediately, but some have stayed.  One friend told me that she feels called to be light and salt in the Catholic Church.  Because of these Catholic believers, I think that evangelicals need to have more respect and understanding for Catholics.  After all, if they came to a genuine faith in the Catholic Church, then there is clearly some power even in a watered-down Gospel.

God had clearly placed me into this Catholic cell group.  And they clearly do have the in-filling of the Holy Spirit.  But I was troubled because they do believe in things that I consider superstition.  So here was my brief conversation with God:

Why these believers still do these superstitious things?  They know that they can go directly to You in prayer, right?

Of course they do.  But you’ve noticed that I answer their prayers through these things.

I see that, but I don’t understand.

They are touching the hem of My garment in faith.  I honor any true show of faith.  Remember when I healed you of stomach ulcers?  You touched the radio while the preacher prayed.  Is that really any different?

I think it’s a fine line because I believe that the appearances of the Virgin Mary are not genuine.  The Bible is very clear about the worship of fellow creatures, whether they be angels or humans: it is forbidden.  Yet this apparition accepts worship.  I’ve noticed from my personal encounters with spirit beings that whenever it’s an angel sent from God, the encounter is always pleasant, both physically and emotionally.  But when it’s a demonic encounter, it is unpleasant (dizziness, faintness, sick feeling in the stomach, shakiness, and usually a feeling of terror or dread).  The people I spoken with have all confirmed that “Mary” sightings are always of the unpleasant variety.

The Bible is also very clear about the dead returning to earth—it doesn’t happen.  The only instance in which it has ever happened is in I Samuel 28.  Notice the witch’s reaction when the real Samuel appears—she wasn’t expecting him at all, but her familiar spirit (a demon), masquerading as Samuel.

And, finally, the Bible is very clear about the Catholic Church’s end: it’s not going to end well.  But first God will call His people out of the Catholic Church.  In its present state, the Catholic Church is still preaching the Gospel, though it is watered-down.  But once the antichrist comes on the scene, he will inspire the Catholic Church to embrace a more “universal” religion.  I think that when that happens, the believers in the Church will leave it.

So, I believe that we should share the Gospel with Catholics (because we can’t assume that all of them have really heard and understood the Gospel message); but I also believe that we should leave it to God whether they should stay in the Church or come out of it.