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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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  • « Book Review: Justification and Regeneration, by Charles Leiter | Main | The Emergent Church and the Gospel »

    Kingdom Expansion in SE Asia

    The following is a recent enounter my missionary friends had in SE Asia.

    "I have been healed so many times by the Buddhist monks, but the demon
    spirits keep coming back. It doesn't really work like I thought. I don't
    care who I pray to, I just need healing. "

    These were the desperate words I heard 1 month ago from my next door
    neighbor, Ihsan. After praying for she and her family for 4 + years, I knew
    the time was finally right to introduce her to Jesus, and that only He had
    the power to heal what was plaguing her.

    Ihsan and her husband Glenn have 4 children, with similar ages to ours. As
    soon as we arrived in Singapore, we struck up a very friendly rapport with
    them. They are Indonesian, both in successful business ventures making
    them very well off. In fact she is a VP wth a very prominent international
    finance firm. They have both been college and graduate school in America,
    so they were happy to have us as neighbors, and enjoyed talking about
    politics, and even allowed their kids to visit our church occasionally.

    Glenn and Ihsan were strong Buddhists. Their house was filled gold Bhudda
    idols and alters that they prayed to every morning and night. We often saw
    them praying with incense over the Mercedes Benz!!, and when things were not
    going well, they would consult "feng shui" masters, seek fortune tellers,
    and even fly in Buddhist monks from Thailand.

    About 3 years ago, Ihsan trusted me with a very personal secret. She was
    being plagued by "ghosts", which would cause her to change into another
    person, using incredible strength, speak in different languages, and use a
    different voice than hers. She would feel it coming on by a choking
    sensation, and her legs would feel numb, like being paralyzed. These
    experiences sometimes came every night, but were unpredictable. It was
    overwhelmingly scary for her, as she knew that if something like this
    manifested at work, she would be deemed emotionally unstable, and would
    loose her job. She sought after medical help, but nothing was ever
    discovered. She explained that someone in her family practiced Indonesian
    black magic, and was very jealous of her and her financial success, plus
    having 4 beautiful children. She believed that this lady had placed curses
    on her, and was praying against her to evil spirits.

    At that time, I asked if I could pray for her, and she said yes. It was the
    first time she had ever been prayed for out loud. Jeff and I recognized
    that she was very clearly struggling with demon possession, and committed to
    pray regularly for her delieverance, and for their families salvation.

    After that, she would often confidently tell me how the Buddhist monks could
    cure her, and that she was free from the "ghosts". I wanted to tell her
    about the Lord, but I never felt He was releasing me to do so. We felt
    confused that the Lord was allowing that to happen. We were so disappointed
    as we watched them pull away from us, and become more involved with
    chanting, and going to the Buddhist temple for two years.

    On Valentines Day, after she shared that she was desperate to find a cure, I
    told her I knew The Cure! I asked her permission to bring someone with me
    to pray for her, and that the "ghosts" would go away and stop tormenting
    her. She agreed, and for the first time she cried out to God. The next day,
    she was indeed delivered from 7 demons, knowing and experiencing the power
    of Jesus for the first time.

    She said, "When the ghosts came that day, it was different. Even though I
    wasn't the one talking and acting wildly, I could still see and feel what
    was going on. When the pastor commanded the demons to come out in the name
    of Jesus, they were scared when he said that. They tried to resist, but they
    couldn't. Now I know that Jesus is real, and that He is the most powerful
    God."

    Along with Ihsan's spiritual healing and salvation, were many others that
    witnessed what happened to her that evening, including her husband, two
    oldest children (ages 10 and 8), her Mom, and her 3 helpers who are Muslims,
    who have all believed in Jesus as well! Praise the Lord.

    They were all baptized by Jeff on Easter Morning, in the ocean, at our
    sunrise service.

    We've never personally seen such a strong power encounter
    quite like this before happen with personal friends and neighbors, and then
    so many salvations at one time. Our faith has been strengthened as we've
    seen God do a mighty work, and answered our prayers in His perfect time.
    We'll be hesitant to doubt that He is at work when we can't see any results
    again!

    We knew you'd want to rejoice with us by hearing this special testimony that
    we're so privileged to share! Thank you for your love for our family and
    for YOUR prayers for us! In fact many of you have prayed on a few occasions
    for this famiy yourselves as we have mentioned them in past newsletters over
    the years.

    Posted by John on May 12, 2008 10:47 AM

    Comments

    Thanks for this. Exciting to see that God delivered her from her "ghost" experiences.

    Although I am under the impression that a belief in ghosts is not prevalent in America, from my experiences with Asians and living in an Asian country, it seems that there is a much stronger belief in "ghosts". There could very well be demons at work here.

    Anyway, it's really neat that your missionary friends met their friend where she was at and that's really neat how God delivered her.

    Again, thank you for this testimony -

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