Life Compass
Keeping You Pointed in the Right Direction

SATAN HATH DESIRED YOU … HAMMOND

And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheatLuke 22:31

This is an amazing account in the life and ministry of Christ when He looks into the eyes of one His followers whom He loved dearly and warned him that Satan desired him. In fact, the Lord told Peter, “I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not.” But Peter’s faith did fail. Many times. In fact, it would fail that very night when he would curse and deny Christ three times.

Did Peter set out to fail? No. Was Peter a false disciple? No. Was Peter a flawed, sinful man? Yes.

Peter -despite his passion and zeal for Christ- failed to realize the strength and seriousness of his adversary … Satan. He argued with the Lord, “I will never deny You!” Did he? Yes. How many passionate, sincere Christians committ before the Lord promises of faithfulness, purity, righteousness, holiness, and an endless list convictions only to fail … miserably. Or as my kids would say – Epic Fail! Paul said the things I know in my spirit I know are wrong I do. And the things I know in my flesh are right I don’t do. How is that possible? Especially among people – Christians – who know Satan is out to destroy our lives yet we sin  anyway. We want to. But why do we want to?

Despite our head knowledge of Satan … we somehow fail to comprehend how powerful he is and how much we are not prepared within ourselves to tear down the strongholds he erects inside of us. So we struggle, we confess, we shore up our flesh to do better only to fail again. Paul warned … that which is spirit is spirit and that which is flesh is flesh. Too many Christians attempt to wage spiritual warfare in the flesh. The flesh is Satan’s domain. To defeat Satan we need to be operating in the spirit. Spiritual warfare is spiritual warfare not just surpression of temptation and impulses. Once Satan gains a foothold … he lays claim. The Bible states that Satan builds strongholds. These are not moving weapons he brings into our lives. These encampments … forts … that he builds in our lives for resident occupation. If we only ever just confess and attempt to forsake a sinful habit or behavior … it will come back over and over and over. Each time more powerful.

When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.  Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation. – Matthew 12:43-45

Unless confession is followed up with repentance and accountability and yieldedness … the sin will return with a vengance. Why? Satan has laid claim to that terroritory.

I pastored for 15 years in an area that was marked by vicious division within local churches. After some study I found out most of the churches were splits off three other churches. The reason none of them could get along and people within communities seemed so back stabbing … I learned our area in colonial America had been home to two Indian tribes. One of those tribes was cannibolistic and hunted the other tribe. The name of our valley was translated “Valley of the Maneaters.” The actual hamlet I pastored had two names which meant wild, unsettled shallow place. Soooo, I pastored in an area whose heritage was wild, unsettled, shallow, and devoured people. Welcome. WOW! Because no church or spiritual leader ever dealt with it … it continued. Territorial spirits (demons) laid claim.

Ever wonder why one church seemingly has more than an average series of problems in a specific area? Okay … let’s look at First Baptist Church of Hammond. Even a casual glance warrants a head turn at the volume of allegations and known instances of immorality. Bad people? No. Wicked and evil? No. They believe in the gospel, they preach purity, they sincerely strive for holiness, they fill altars confessing. So what’s the problem? No renunciation. No public repentance. No accountability. No yieldedness. Sooo, territorial demonic spirits ply their wares. When some revival hits … it calms down .. but they come back with more evil spirit friends and latch onto the next victim who doesn’t take them serious until it’s too late.

Did Jack Schaap take the pulpit to sin and fail? No. I have zero doubt that he is truly my brother in Christ, loved the Lord, and yes -I will say it- loved his wife and family. Do I think his arrogance of “I am the man of God and I will do as I please” tripped him up? Yes but not solely. It was his ignorance of failing to realize that four decades of covering up immorality  had allowed some pretty powerful demonic spirits to roam unchecked licking their chops waiting to sift him!

Before you accuse me of “blame it on the devil” theology … it’s not. He is still responsible for his own actions and must accept the responsibility of his own sinful actions.

I’m sorry but it angers me that leaders and laity sat silently through the Dave Hyles mess. I will leave the Nischik-Hyles allegations. Dr. Hyles denied it. Mrs Hyles’ has never acknowledged it as truthful. Nor has Mrs Nischik. And after several debates with the accuser, Vick Nischik and myself, he offered no proof and is less than credible. What about his kids? Angry, bitter people wanting someone to blame for their parents problems … blame the guy they thought was stealing their dad’s  wife’s love (in this case Dr. Hyles). Sorry, I don’t buy it and never have. BUT Dave Hyles’ escapades were public … very public and very immoral. Dr. Hyles never offered a public rebuke. Never. Dr. Hyles never rebuked some of the staff members who were immoral and were quietly moved on to other places of service. Elders are to be rebuked publicly.

What angers me is NONE of that was ever acknowledged before the church, repented of, dealt with, and steps of accountability put into place. I realize Dr. Hyles may have thought that love covers a multitude of sins. Also, his generation did not believe in airing dirty laundry. And, yes, he wanted to safe guard the reputation of his ministry, church, and image. He worried truth would ruin it. Truth sets you free. By never dealing with that stuff … demons have run wild there. And if it’s not dealt with … the next pastor … no matter who he is or where they get him from … will have a moral failure as well. Mark it down!

What angers me is they have unloaded on Schaap (rightfully so) but have remained silent on the rest. Sad. Shameful. Sinful.

God has used FBCH in a great way. For all their faults … God used them to influence tens of thousands of churches to develop soul-winning ministries, bus evangelism, Christian schools, and so much more. How much more could He do and does He still desire to do if they would truly clean house -sweep out the demonic strongholds that get reinforced through lies, denials, and cover ups to protect an image that doesn’t actual exist.

The best part of this account in Peter’s life. Despite his sin. Despite being sifted. Following His resurrection, Christ sought him out and dined at breakfast with him. Peter – the cursing, sifted failure was also given the greatest preaching assignment in the New Testament … Pentecost!

Good things happen when you get sinful things right!

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