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    "The Demoniac" Episode 43

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    Nathan James Norman
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    "The Demoniac" Episode 43

    Post  Nathan James Norman on November 10th 2015, 6:16 am

    We posted this one a week or so back.
    The audio for the actual story isn't quite "studio quality" but the story fits the bill!

    http://www.untoldpodcast.com/home/episode-43-the-demoniac bounce



    Discussion Questions:
    1. Why isn't this sort of thing common today?
    2. Do you think this sort of thing was common in Jesus' time?
    3. Why is this biblical story still powerful today?



    mikel.withers

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    Re: "The Demoniac" Episode 43

    Post  mikel.withers on November 10th 2015, 2:48 pm

    I'll throw a question back at you: why does it seem like so many people today believe in angels, but not demons?

    I really liked what you did with this story.

    To your questions, and I'll lump 1 and 2 together. Is it not common today? Perhaps demonic interactions take on a form that we see as "simply" medical. What if the way that demons influenced us was through illness?
    -note: as I believe you personally know, NJN, but for the benefit of those who don't but might read this, I have a mental illness. I suffer from an anxiety disorder with panic attacks and depression. It has been bad enough where I am non-functional, and only through medication avoid that sort of thing. So please don't think I am saying that all medical and mental illness is "the work of the Devil". I will tell you, though, that with the sort of problems I have faced, I have also had thoughts and impulses that are far from the Good. Is it not possible that those are something on top of the merely chemical imbalance?
    Next, if it is not common today, why not? I think it could very well be that there is no need for demonic forces to manifest in such a way in order to get their desired results. Perhaps today it is more efficient to lull us to sleep. Back to my own mental illness: when I am having a panic attack, I am torn open to God. I have to just throw myself on Him and wait. When I am healthy, I might not think of Him as much, and certainly not to the same dedication (much to my shame).
    It may be that if I grew up in a society where I would not throw myself on God, but rather on false gods, or demonic forces themselves, it would be more potent to terrify me in order to keep me FROM God, rather than pushing me to Him. Likewise, in a society ruled by superstition and pagan beliefs, maybe horrifying possessions kept people in the pockets of the demonic.
    Then again, maybe with Christ's advent the demonic forces started being bound, and we really do have less spiritual warfare around us. Maybe we are bad enough on our own (humanity) so that the slack is taken up by us. (but I don't think this one is the case)

    As to question 3: I would say it might be powerful today because (I assume) we've all had urges and impulses that overtake us without our conscious assent. We all lash out, hurting ourselves or those around us despite our better judgement. Maybe being possessed by evil spirits isn't as alien a concept as we would like it to be.

    Nathan James Norman
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    Re: "The Demoniac" Episode 43

    Post  Nathan James Norman on December 1st 2015, 9:08 pm

    mikel.withers wrote:I'll throw a question back at you: why does it seem like so many people today believe in angels, but not demons?


    Great question.
    I'm sure this has more to do with the "spirit of the age" more than anything else. I don't have the definitive answer... but I'll give it a shot. (I'd be interested in hearing your answer as well.

    I think there's a number of factors that play into this:
    1. The comfort of America. We seek out comfort. The dark supernatural realm isn't comfortable.
    2. Positivity - Even in the church, everything MUST be positive. Angels are positive, demons are not.
    3. Spiritual warfare - Even Satan masquerades as an angel of light. In our postmodern climate, I think Satan is more than happy to operate in the background.

    Nathan James Norman
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    Re: "The Demoniac" Episode 43

    Post  Nathan James Norman on December 1st 2015, 9:15 pm

    mikel.withers wrote:
    I really liked what you did with this story.

    Thanks so much. These sorts of sermons take a lot of mental, spiritual, and creative energy to pull off. I keep saying that I'm never doing them again... but they're so effective. (And their effectiveness is due to the power of the Word).

    mikel.withers wrote:
    To your questions, and I'll lump 1 and 2 together. Is it not common today? Perhaps demonic interactions take on a form that we see as "simply" medical. What if the way that demons influenced us was through illness?
    -note: as I believe you personally know, NJN, but for the benefit of those who don't but might read this, I have a mental illness. I suffer from an anxiety disorder with panic attacks and depression. It has been bad enough where I am non-functional, and only through medication avoid that sort of thing. So please don't think I am saying that all medical and mental illness is "the work of the Devil". I will tell you, though, that with the sort of problems I have faced, I have also had thoughts and impulses that are far from the Good. Is it not possible that those are something on top of the merely chemical imbalance?
    Next, if it is not common today, why not? I think it could very well be that there is no need for demonic forces to manifest in such a way in order to get their desired results. Perhaps today it is more efficient to lull us to sleep. Back to my own mental illness: when I am having a panic attack, I am torn open to God. I have to just throw myself on Him and wait. When I am healthy, I might not think of Him as much, and certainly not to the same dedication (much to my shame).
    It may be that if I grew up in a society where I would not throw myself on God, but rather on false gods, or demonic forces themselves, it would be more potent to terrify me in order to keep me FROM God, rather than pushing me to Him. Likewise, in a society ruled by superstition and pagan beliefs, maybe horrifying possessions kept people in the pockets of the demonic.
    Then again, maybe with Christ's advent the demonic forces started being bound, and we really do have less spiritual warfare around us. Maybe we are bad enough on our own (humanity) so that the slack is taken up by us. (but I don't think this one is the case)

    As to question 3: I would say it might be powerful today because (I assume) we've all had urges and impulses that overtake us without our conscious assent. We all lash out, hurting ourselves or those around us despite our better judgement. Maybe being possessed by evil spirits isn't as alien a concept as we would like it to be.

    Ok... I have nothing to add here.
    Thank you for your transparency. Your bravery undoubtedly will help others process what they are going through.

    I think you really described some of the tension we feel in our modern day between mental illness and supernatural forces. As you pointed out, I think we often confuse one realm with the other.

    (Ok... I'll add one thing)
    I think in other parts of the world we do see more spectacular supernatural warfare. As you pointed out... it seems Satan will do what he does within the context of the culture he's found himself in.

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