My background of strife and insecurity was replaced by one of gentleness, love and fulfillment. Then as I become involved with the ministry I find that ministers have faults. I have had three experiences with three different ministers, that has left me feeling confused. I have said nothing to anyone about any of them. I have stuffed the disappointments behind closed doors of my soul. Eventually, they all get together and break down the door.
In the meanwhile, I have prayed and have decided to give notice to pastor h., the new pastor and the church, that I will not be staying as the assistant. So, I move the family in with the wife’s mother, work with the bank to take the house back and refund the down payment to my mother-in-law. They actually did that. I made some phone calls and began to travel to the state of New York to preach some meetings.
I had an invitation from a college buddy in downtown Bronx. I stayed in the basement of his apartment, as he did not have a spare bedroom, but he did have a cot set up in the basement. This night turned out to be very spooky. The basement was down a narrow set of stairs that exited out of their kitchen. It was unfinished of course. The furnace was one of those where you could see the flames around the edges of the door, and it made a lot of noise when the blower kicked on. The basement was one big room wrapped around this giant antique furnace. The room was packed full of boxes and extra furniture and tools and bikes and you name it.
So, it is late, we have returned home from the service, ate some sandwiches, and visited for a season. The pastor and his wife have gone upstairs to their bedroom, and I am on my cot in the noisy basement. The furnace sounds like it is getting ready to either explode through the kitchen or fall apart all around me.
There is one bare light bulb that I can turn on and off with a string. I pull the string, the light goes out. I crawl into my cot and cover up with a blanket. I pray awhile and eventually fall asleep. Around 3 a.m. I awake ‘feeling’ an evil presence in the room. I grab my Bible and start praying. “I thank you Lord Jesus for your blood and for your power over all demonic spirits. I ask that you fill this room and this house with your Holy Spirit and the presence of your angels. Satan, I rebuke you in Jesus Name and command you to leave this house. In Jesus Name, go!” The evil feeling left and God’s presence surrounded me and I went back to sleep.
I tell the Pastor about it the next morning and he is surprised as he has never had any discernment of evil around. I told him, he should sleep in the basement!
I then preached for another minister in Brooklyn. This time I was asked to spend the night at the church on a cot in a Sunday School room. This was another long night. The church was in a rough area of town. There was no one around but me. It was a big old-time church building. There were a lot of night noises. I am in the Sunday School room on my cot. I have turned out the light and prayed and am ready for sleep. I hear something come from the auditorium, so I get up, turn on the light, throw on my robe, and take a walk out into the hallway and make my way to the auditorium. I turn on another light and walk around praying as I go. No one around and the doors are locked. I make a trip to the basement and do the same. No one around. Back upstairs and back to my cot. I turn the light out and eventually fall asleep, only to be awakened again.+-
This time it is evil and I can feel the darkness of demons. I grab my Bible and start praying in Jesus Name against the darkness. I spend two hours praying and walking this church praying against the darkness and for God to release His angels and Holy Spirit into this church. I finally feel a release in my spirit and I go back to bed and sleep like a baby.
Paul spoke of being hindered by Satan when he was trying to do the work of God. I have been visited many times by demonic spirits trying to hinder me from getting a good night’s sleep or from receiving the message I needed for a particular service, or just to harass me. James taught us to resist the devil and he will flee from us. Jesus gave us authority over all unclean spirits. They all are subject to the Name of Jesus Christ.
I preach for a couple of other pastors in the area without incident and then head back home. While staying with the mother-in-law, I receive a call to help the pastor pray at the local church. He has been in revival and he and the evangelist are at a man’s house praying against some demons. I grab my Bible and prayed all the way into town. When I get to this house, I find the man on the floor with the pastor holding down his legs, and the evangelist holding down his arms, and both of them praying against the evil spirits troubling the man. The man is tossing his head violently back and forth from side to side and yelling, “I won’t come out! I won’t come out!”
I immediately felt the evil and threw off my coat and straddled the man’s chest. I said, “I command you to look at this Bible!” He continued to ignore me and toss his head side to side yelling that he wasn’t coming out. I said, “I command you in Jesus Name to look at this Bible!” The man’s head snapped to attention, stopped tossing side to side, and looked straight at the Bible. I held the Bible right in front of his eyes. He stared at the Bible and his eyes became as big as silver dollars. His head stayed in that position staring at the Word. I said, “This Bible says that you are subject to this Word and the Name of Jesus Christ. I command you in the Name of Jesus Christ to come out of M. and return to where you came from!”
The man relaxed, he quit fighting us, his body went limp, his eyes went back to normal, he opened his mouth and lifted his hands above his head and started praising and thanking God for His help.
The Bible says that where two or three are gathered together in His Name, He is there in their midst and a threefold cord is not easily broken.
I had had many encounters with the evil one’s presence, but this was my first exorcism. There would be more in the years to come.
It was soon after this that I receive a telephone call to come back East to take over a group of five people. After praying and fasting for direction, I felt that this was where God wanted us to be. We pack up and make the move one more time to the district that gave me a rough welcome a few years ago. I would spend seven years in this district this time.
To be continued…