Weapons of Mass Intervention

The Power of Prayer and Why it is Under Attack


If you arrived here via my Welcome page you will already realise that the silencing of Christians during the lunacy of 2020 doesn’t sit well with me. If you arrived here directly, this is what I had to say:

‘Christian voices were silenced at a moment in history when they should have been at their loudest. I for one have no wish to remain silent. It’s time our voices were heard.’

In using the term ‘were silenced’ I’ve clearly expressed the view that this ‘gag order’ has been deliberate.

I’m writing this post to explain why I believe the action – or rather the attack – has been pre-meditated, targeted and strategic. First of all, I’ll give one recent example of Christian suppression.

On September 23rd, three Christian men were arrested in Moscow for participating in an outdoor worship service.

This snippet of news may not surprise many, given that the event occurred in Moscow. However, this didn’t happen in Moscow, Russia, but in Moscow in the state of Idaho, USA.

The United States of America, home to the largest Christian population in the world; a nation in which sixty-two percent of polled adults claim to be active members of a church congregation; a nation whose Pledge of Allegiance states:

‘I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.’

Sadly, repression of Christian worship in America is not limited to Idaho.

Idaho is one of many states in which severe restrictions on church gatherings and worship are enforced. For example, the California state governor has banned totally all indoor worship.

Meanwhile, in San Fransisco, the city’s Mayor, not satisfied with the usual two metre distancing ruling enforced across many nations, has ordered that only one person at a time may be permitted to enter houses of worship. Perhaps the man, London Breed, is all too aware of Jesus’ assurance stated in the book of Matthew:

‘For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.’

Matthew 18:20

What are world leaders, such as Mayor Breed, so afraid of that they seek to prevent Christians from meeting together? Why do they seek to forcibly silence those who engage in vocal worship?

I’ll tell you what I think – in my own meandering way, so please bear with me.


To retake Port Stanley from Argentinian invaders in 1982, the British army advanced overland in what was a gruelling forced-march in full kit over difficult terrain. Between them and their goal were a series of hill defences upon which the Argentinian forces were heavily entrenched and well equipped with artillery and mortars.

The battles to retake these hill-top defences generally took place at night. During one such battle, to capture the hills known as Two Sisters, the British were again outnumbered, their enemy well dug-in and heavily armed.

The fighting was bitter, with artillery shells and mortar fire raining down on the British soldiers who, by that time were exhausted and almost out of ammunition. Things were desperate. The attack to retake the hills was about to stall.

The British commanding officer, Clive Dytor, then fixed his bayonet and ran screaming at the opposing forces, firing from the hip. His men quickly followed suit and charged the enemy lines, yelling like berserkers. Though heavily outnumbered, their fearsome attack so demoralised their enemy that the British quickly overwhelmed the Argentinian defences.

Outnumbered, outgunned, and open to enemy fire the British employed fear to discourage and dis-empower their enemy. And it worked.


I’ll now dial the clock back further, to 1944.

The second episode of the 2001 TV series ‘Band of Brothers’ is titled ‘Day of Days’. It covers events occurring on D-Day. During the episode, Easy Company are tasked with performing an airborne landing behind enemy lines prior to the beach-landing of the main invasion force.

Allied commanders were aware that the enemy had positioned heavy artillery in bunkers behind the beach-line defences. They knew that, unless they were disabled, the heavy fire from these would rain down on the allied soldiers and may even prevent a successful landing. Easy Company’s mission was to attack the bunkers and put the guns out of action.

For the invasion to have a chance of success, the greatest threat had to be silenced.

These examples suggest two things:

  • When attacking well-protected opponents from a weaker position, fear may be successfully employed as a weapon.
  • For operational success, it is vital that those elements which represent the greatest risk to the mission are neutralised. The heavy guns.

I make no apology for including examples of military conflict when discussing this year’s silencing of the Christian community. Anyone who can’t see that what is taking place right now is a war of epic proportions is simply not paying attention.

As I’ve alluded to several times already on this site, we’re witnessing history being made on a scale this generation has never seen. Many people, however, remain ignorant of this reality as much of it is unreported, downplayed or misrepresented in our media.

Nevertheless, Christian commentators familiar with Biblical end-time prophecy, are sitting up and paying attention.

This brings me to a further quote from my Welcome page:

‘I am sure [events of 2020] will eventually come to be recognised as, not only an attack on humanity, but an attack on Christianity.’

One might consider this to be a touch melodramatic, or take the view that, as buildings of worship are now re-opened, everything is hunky-dory. Such a view would be a mistake.

Bearing in mind my summary of the two historical examples above, here is a sample of text taken from the UK government’s ‘Guidance for the Safe Use of Places of Worship …’

The UK is currently experiencing a public health emergency as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The transmission characteristics of COVID-19 are outlined by Public Health England. The transmission of COVID-19 is thought to occur mainly through respiratory droplets generated by coughing and sneezing, and through contact with contaminated surfaces. The predominant modes of transmission are assumed to be droplet and contact.

‘… fear may be successfully employed as a weapon.’

I’ve extracted the following from similar guidelines produced by the local church which, until recently, I regularly attended:

There will be no singing by the congregation or raised voices.

‘… it is vital that those elements which represent the greatest risk to the mission are neutralised.’

To understand why I no longer attend that church I suggest you visit my post ‘A Question of Obedience’. Once there, consider those enforced regulations and judge for yourself whether they represent freedom to worship or Christian persecution.

So, why would anyone suppress the act of Christian worship, using fear of a virus to do so?

I’ve already hinted at the answer to that question above, but I’ll elaborate here:

Christians, and their power of prayer are the big guns. Effective, target-focussed prayer represents such an overwhelming threat to those in service to Satan that, to have any chance at success in whatever evil agenda their’s may be, it is vital that they muzzle Christ’s army.

Furthermore, as with the Falklands’ example above, our oppressors have launched their attack from a position of weakness, using fear as their weapon.

I know from personal experience that prayer brings results. However, before sitting to write this post, I consulted a number of books in my collection to gain a fuller understanding of the true potency of prayer.

It’s unsurprising that my first and most trusted resource was the Bible. Here, there’s a multitude of scriptural references on the subject. Perhaps one of the most pivotal examples is this statement given by Jesus:

‘Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.’

Matthew 18:18-20

Prayer, however, is not a contrivance with which, like petulant children, we appeal to God into satisfying our every wants.

The act of prayer is a cool-headed acceptance of our true situation before our heavenly Father. It’s also an admission of our need for His intervention in our lives.

It isn’t something we simply do for ourselves, ‘intercession’ is a prayer by which Christians pray for others. We are urged to intercede for other people. Used this way, prayer is both unifying and strengthening.

In his Concise Commentary, Matthew Henry wrote:

‘The disciples of Christ must be praying people; all, without distinction of nation, sect, rank, or party.’

Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary of the Whole Bible

I take comfort in the fact that the power of prayer isn’t determined by the one praying. Its success isn’t dependent on a magic formula of buzzwords, scriptural slogans or godly gobbledygook. It’s in an honest, open hearted and reverent approach to God. The almighty power resides in Him, of who Jesus said:

‘… with God all things are possible.’

Matthew 19:26

Unfortunately, the power we have available to us through our authority in prayer is widely underestimated. Our enemy, however, knows full well our true potential.

It is for this reason those prominent and priviledged pawns strutting on Satan’s chessboard have sought to demoralise, muzzle and silence Christians worldwide.


It’s time our voices were heard!


‘The prayer preceding all prayers is “May it be the real I who speaks. May it be the real Thou that I speak to.”’

C.S. Lewis

Fearless

In nineteen eighty-nine, three enterprising young men created a clothing brand, billed as an ‘extreme sports brand with added attitude’. It now includes its own highly successful energy drink, and the brand has even been promoted by Hollywood through several of its ‘blockbuster’ movies.
The brand’s name?

No Fear

No Fear has been a global success story. So much so that the logo could often be seen on bumper-stickers, vehicle windows and, of course, on the clothing itself.

At one time, if you were to walk down almost any high street, you’d probably see the name – ‘No Fear’.

Fast forward to 2020 and what do we now see as we walk those same streets? We see fear. Despite faces half-hidden by masks, we see a population afraid. A demoralised people living in fear. But fear of what?

We’re warned of a dreadful ‘hidden enemy’ that stalks our land like a bacteriological Grim Reaper, striking down countless thousands as it cuts swathes through the nation. So goes the warning. But what do we actually see?

We see TV bulletins. We see headlines in newspapers. On the radio we hear an unrelenting chorus of pessimism and hopelessness every hour, on the hour. Of course people are afraid. Isn’t it inevitable?

But …

… what if that which people fear most is simply the bad news itself? They dread the next baffling bulletin, the next bizarre broadcast. What if it’s these things that are blighting their lives?

Like moths drawn to a flame, they can’t resist the urge to do that which causes their pain and they switch on, tune in and hang onto every word. Unbeknown to them, their greatest fears are being realised each and every day.

Fear.

Of course, there may be some whose desire is for us to be fearful; some who consider that fear renders us compliant, placid and helpless. After all, before 2020, were the headlines that much different? Were they, really?

Whatever the reasons may be, God doesn’t want us to be afraid.

“… do not fear for I am with you …”

Genesis 26:24

Any non-Christians reading the above verse may doubt the relevance of a phrase written fifteen hundred years before Christ. What validity does it have to those events occurring in the twenty-first century?

However, the bible teaches us that a fear-less life, living under the assurance of God’s love and protection was not something that was limited to Abraham’s generation all those years ago. The verse is a timeless one and applies to every single one of God’s children. I am one. As are you.

Despite the extraordinary and perverse events I see around me I don’t allow fear to dwell in me. I never allow it to gain purchase. That’s not to say that I’m a stranger to fear. I’m no more brave or resilient than the next man. Far from it. Fear has featured in my daily life for many years.

With God’s help, however, fear is now a temporary intruder, hastily evicted, rather than an unwelcome lodger permitted to squat in the basement of my psyche.

Such control over this unwelcome guest hasn’t always been the case. I’ll explain.

In 2017 I was invited by my medical specialist to give an account of living with uncontrolled epilepsy – a condition that goes hand-in-glove with stress and fear. This is what I wrote at that time:


Imagine if you will, driving your car down a busy road at night. It could be a narrow road such as those in North Yorkshire, flanked by dry stone walls. The walls have stood for over a century. They’re solid, rugged and unforgiving.

As you contemplate the stone-cold walls, you hit black ice and spin out of control. Please now focus on the nauseating fear you have in the pit of your stomach. Imagine removing your hands from the wheel—for you are no longer in control of your body’s motor function.

Now, remove all your lucidity, knowledge of the likely outcome; eliminate any memory you may have of previous such experiences. Disregard your earlier sense of logic— for at the onset of an epileptic seizure, logic no longer has a seat in the house.

You may fear crippling injury; you can’t influence the outcome. Anxiety piles on distress. You may die. Your fate is out of your hands.

Now, imagine how that feels. But let me tell you, you’re still not even close to experiencing the all-consuming fear of a seizure.

Consider the sickening sense of relief you experience as you regain control.

Your heart rate settles, the trembling in your limbs eases. Sweating ceases as your body and mind recovers.

Now, contemplate the dawning realisation that this will happen again later in the day. It will happen twice, three times maybe. And you have no idea of when they’ll hit you or where you’ll be when they do. Imagine the dread at facing a tomorrow loaded with the same constant threat— and every day of your life.

Now, put on a smile and carry on.

You see, the fear doesn’t come and go with the seizure activity. It remains a constant feature, albeit at a fluctuating level each day.


That was my life in 2017.

Two years later, almost crushed by the burden of responsibility in an increasingly hostile and dysfunctional world, whilst at the same time struggling to maintain control of body and mind, I cast my cares onto God, and declared:

‘Lord, I can’t do this on my own. I need Your help in my life.’

I waved the white flag. But mine was not a flag of surrender, but one of victory, for that’s when my life changed.

That’s when my unwelcome lodger was finally expelled from the basement.

Worry and anxiety not only drain the spirit, but deplete our physical strength and consume our joy for life. Worry and fear are unacceptable. Jesus told us not to worry. He knows it can break us physically, mentally and spiritually – and this is not what he wants for us.

‘Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.’

Phillipians 4:6-7

To further illustrate the secure, unflinching confidence of a life filled with God’s gift of the Holy Spirit, what follows is a statement written by a Christian brother. Before proceeding, you may read his brief testimony here.

Here is his declaration:


Declaration

Fifty-three years ago as a hard-drinking foul-mouthed soldier who tried to kill his friend who had become a Christian, God used that same friend to bring me to the cross of salvation.
God took me from the barrack room and anointed me to preach His Word.

He took me to nineteen different countries on four continents, some of them up to eight times. I have traveled on every type of transport known to man, and some that should not be known to man. I have slept in high-class hotels and under the stars. I have lived in villages and shanty towns in Africa and India, have walked through war zones and deserts, and have climbed mountains and traversed forests.

I have faced wild animals, been chased by angry mobs, had guns pointed at me and been caught up in riots (not of my making).

I have been with kings and politicians and with street beggars. I once climbed a mountain to minister to two dear souls and have preached to vast crowds at open-air meetings. I have conducted seminars for hundreds and Bible studies for two seekers.

I have worked with some of the finest children of God in all of the countries I visited. I have been inspired by their devotion to the work of His Kingdom and have counted it a great honour to have been able to work alongside them.

Now I am nearing my seventy-sixth birthday. I am still on fire for God and His Word; I am fit and (as far as I have ever been) am of sound mind.

I will not be cowered by a virus or intimidated by immoral liars of any political party. Nor will I be kept down by weak church leaders.

I am an eagle and I will rise up and proclaim the Word of God.



A final word on ‘fear’.

In the words of a song by American artist, Zach Williams, fear is also a liar:

Fear he is a liar.
He will take your breath,
Stop you in your steps.
Fear he is a liar.
He will rob your rest,
Steal your happiness.
Cast your fear in the fire,
‘Cause fear he is a liar.

To hear the song, click here.


Treasure, More Valuable than Gold


Guest Post, submitted by Ray, a brother in Christ


A brief bio of my guest:

Following a difficult childhood, Ray had decided there was no God. While serving as a hard-hitting, heavy drinking young man in the British Army’s Corps of Transport, Ray’s best friend and fellow soldier, Mike, became a Christian. It was more than Ray could bear.

Ray’s friend became a target for his anger and was subjected to a series of pranks and beatings until one day, Ray’s rage was such that he tried to kill Mike during a barrack room brawl.

The two men parted, leaving Ray embittered, isolated and unhappy.

His isolation led him to consider how his friend’s life as a Christian starkly contrasted with his own. At this point, the two men met once more and Ray declared:

Mike, I want what you’ve got.

Mike then led Ray through the Bible, showed him that he was a sinner who needed the salvation offered by God through His son, Jesus Christ, who’d died on the cross for him.

Ray asked Jesus into his life and became a changed man.

He left the army, and in the ensuing forty years, God led him from the Barrack room and into ministry, during which Ray took the gospel message to nineteen countries on four continents.

Ray with friend, Pastor Lucas in Tanzania


One of the first things I was told when I became a child of God was that a half truth is worse than a lie. Sadly, the church in general is today full of half truths and many out and out lies.

Each year, how many churches have Father Christmas for the children? A nice little lie, I am told. Revelation 21:8 should be read and re-read by those who think God accepts any form of lying.

One of the reasons people are led astray is that they do not have the knowledge of God’s presence in either their own lives or in the church.

In referencing the church here I am not referring to the emotional excesses we have witnessed in many churches over recent years where both leadership and led have been trying to work up some sort of ‘spiritual experience’. 

If people really grasp what we are, where we are and what we have, many would stop trying to fill their lives with the things of this world, but would instead enjoy true fellowship with their heavenly Father.

First of all, we need to understand what we are. Romans 8:16 declares:

“The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.”

Those who are truly born of the Spirit will have this absolute assurance, that they are a child of God, and that their Father loves them. They will not need to go to church every Sunday to be told that God loves them. They will have the peace of His presence within them at all times.

Secondly, where we are.

Hebrews 12: 22 says:

“You have come … “

This is present tense. We are not on the way. We have arrived – this is the here and now, not something that will happen in the future.

Where have we come to?  Hebrews 12:22 goes on:

” … to the city of the living God … ”

Verse 23 adds:

“ … to God the judge of all … ”

We have come; we are in the presence of the living God.

In Ephesians 2:4 Paul writes “But God” – then in verse 6 adds “raised us up together and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”

What do we have here?

In one word: ‘Fellowship’ – that is, a true unbounded relationship with our Heavenly Father, the true treasure of heaven, which is more valuable than gold, more fulfilling than worldly possessions.

Jesus said:

“Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Matthew 12:21

 

Where is your heart?



In the Middle


In several places on this site I’ve alluded to what I’ve described as my ‘faltering walk with God.’ In My Testimony I explain how, having known and experienced God’s love, together with the fellowship of a vibrant church community, I eventually shunned both, opting instead to walk alone for forty years in the wilderness that is the world outside the church.

To maintain a reasonable word-count for my Testimony I declined to mention that, during those years, I repeatedly had a desire to find my way back to that narrow path for which this site is named. At such times I’d reach for my Bible and dust it off. Then, aided by a small book of devotional readings on the theme of ‘First Steps in the Christian Faith’ I’d try to re-ignite my own spark of faith.

Each time I tried, I failed.

My efforts were doomed to fail. Without the support of others I may as well have been trying to clap with one hand.

There were occasions, however, when I’d seek out and attend an evangelical church in the hope that the fellowship of other Christians would add the necessary fuel that would turn the spark I mentioned earlier into a flame. Again, it wasn’t to be.

My sense of shame and inadequacy at failing to remain strong in my faith rose up like a wall around me. I was sure that, what I perceived to be the solid foundation of faith in others gave them an insight into my own shortcomings. To put it another way, I no longer felt worthy of God’s love.

I continued my walk, not knowing whether my defection from God had led to His rejection of me; not knowing whether, for this sinner, there was to be no way back to Him.

If you’ve read my Testimony you now know that wasn’t the case. You now know He welcomed me with open arms. As he does for all those He loves.

I’ll never know why I was unable to return to my life as a practicing Christian between the years 1983 and 2019. However, I’m sure God knows. Furthermore, I’m sure that He’ll use experiences I gained during those years in His plans.



I do know that living a Christian life – a life in which one strives to be Christ-like – is not something I or anyone else can do alone. Once again, it would be like trying to clap with one hand. No, I need God’s help to do this each and every day.

Nevertheless, I know that each day will have its victories and each day will have its failures. But, knowledge of this, accepting it and thanking God anyway becomes its own victory.

An awareness that I am inherently flawed, yet striving to follow in the footsteps of the one man who wasn’t creates an inner conflict – a duality of existence. This is not unique to me – it’s the same for all of us.

For me however, this is perfectly summed up in the words of the song ‘In the Middle’ by American Christian artists, ‘Casting Crowns’:

Somewhere between the hot and the cold.
Somewhere between the new and the old.
Somewhere between who I am and who I used to be,
Somewhere in the middle, You'll find me.

Somewhere between the wrong and the right.
Somewhere between the darkness and the light.
Somewhere between who I was and who You're making me,
Somewhere in the middle, You'll find me.

Just how close can I get, Lord, to my surrender
without losing all control?

Fearless warriors in a picket fence,
reckless abandon wrapped in common sense.
Deep water faith in the shallow end
and we are caught in the middle.
With eyes wide open to the differences,
the God we want and the God who is.
But will we trade our dreams for His
or are we caught in the middle?
Are we caught in the middle?

Somewhere between my heart and my hands.
Somewhere between my faith and my plans.
Somewhere between the safety of the boat and the crashing waves.
Somewhere between a whisper and a roar.
Somewhere between the altar and the door.
Somewhere between contented peace and always wanting more,
Somewhere in the middle You'll find me.

Just how close can I get, Lord, to my surrender
without losing all control?

Lord, I feel You in this place and I know You're by my side,
Loving me even on these nights when I'm caught in the middle.

Should you wish to hear the song performed, click here.