Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Explanation of Demons...Not Ghosts

When you die, you will meet God...
Hebrews 9:27

So the question that gets asked to the Exorcism Ministry is “Do Ghosts truly exist or is this something else?” During these blogs we hope to help you discover the “Biblical Truth” of what the Holy Bible states regarding the phenomena.  This will be a multi-part format that we will be discussing.

Part 1 – What is the Bible stance on existence of what paranormal teams call “Ghosts”? In order to put into perspective this term of Ghosts, we need to establish common ground.  This can found in Hebrews from the Bible.  The writer of the book of Hebrews as some scholars think was the Apostle Paul, as just one whom possibly put “pen to paper” for this book.  The bible verse that Paul instructs those believers in God and those non-believers is “Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment,” Hebrews 9:27 (NIV)

This bible verse is very powerful, which places the foundation to nullify the ability to linger around, not wanting to move into the light or to crossover to be at rest.  These are words which we have all heard in the paranormal community.  This verse should be the foundation in which all paranormal teams use as a basis, but unfortunately very few will.

The reason this bible verse should be a foundation for all paranormal teams to embrace, is because many people in the paranormal world I have encountered do believe in a higher power.  Further adding a majority of these people acknowledge that this higher power has a name they have heard at one point in time or another – GOD.

This higher power is an all knowing, all judging and by definition the Alpha and the Omega (the beginning and the end).  Due to that significance of power held, how therefore can one person withstand the ability to linger around against a higher power in a spiritual form?  A majority of the people in this world do believe that something does happen to us when we die.  A common belief is that we leave our body to be in a spirit form. Now, this is not to get into every single aspect of both religion and the beliefs, but to just lay foundation of the point of a higher power.

Now, let’s examine another Bible verse which nullifies what paranormal people classify as Ghosts. This additional ground floor can be located in another book named Ecclesiastes.  This book is penned by Solomon, the son of King David, from the Holy Bible.  In Ecclesiastes 9: 5 & 6 and 10 we learn about the finality of death and the revelation that God had passed onto Solomon.  Verses 5 & 6 state the following, “For the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing, they have no further reward, and even their name is forgotten. Their love, their hate and their jealousy have long since vanished; never again will they have a part in anything that happens under the sun.” (NIV)

To further add more validation to nullification of Ghosts, Solomon pens the words in Ecclesiastes 9:10 “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the realm of the dead, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom.” (NIV)

The bible verses 5 & 6 of Chapter 9 in Ecclesiastes clearly instruct the future readers that once we die any actions of a person once living lingering around or the desire to linger around for any “unfinished business” as a spirit form is nullified.  As a once living being you will no longer take part or have a hand in, ANY business under the life we now are in. Verse 10 from the same book and chapter adds that whatever you should do, do it now while you are alive (meaning righteous works), because once you pass (i.e. die) you cannot go back and further adds that we as humans face judgment of a higher power to another realm (I.e. Heaven or Hell).

Now, the foundational work has been laid to view the paranormal realm properly.  Therefore, nullifying “Ghosts” and lingering around for any unfinished business cannot exist.  So then if “Ghosts” do not exist based on these key biblical verses (and many others exist – Job 14: 10-12, Luke 24: 37-39, etc…), then what is it that paranormal people curious in the proof of afterlife are encountering? Answer: FALLEN ANGELS also known as DEMONS.

Many people will feel different to this point of view because of the personal experiences that these people have felt.  They feel that a loved one has truly come back to visit them.  The unmistakable feelings of the warmth and love that they felt being around that “presence” which came forward to see them.  The person may have even had the pleasure of certain smells that a former living one once had (I.e. Cologne or Perfume).

However, what they were experiencing is not what they thought to be.  Here’s why, according to the holy bible, Jeremiah 1:5 "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations." The higher power God calls us all to be a prophet to every nation, and God is all-knowing, the Alpha and the Omega.

When the Great War in Heaven took place, Lucifer (meaning shining one, morning star) was the most beautiful angel created by God.  Lucifer was given a lot of knowledge by God of his plans to create a race of beings to love and to worship God.  Angels were created to serve God, but Humans were created to love God or not, which is were free will comes in (another subject for another time).  Lucifer became very angry with this plan as Lucifer felt as an angelic being he and other angels were above Humans.

Due to the actions of Lucifer and those who followed Lucifer, they were expelled and as the bible states a third of the “heavenly angels” of glory were cast down to be away from the glory of God forever.  Since this action was created, Lucifer and those cast with him have a “pure hatred” for man (referring to woman and child too). Therefore, the Fallen Angels also know everything about you (referring to all mankind), before you were formed in your mother’s womb as related scripture that God inspired Jeremiah to pen.

Therefore Lucifer and the unholy realm of Fallen Angels started to tempt man and create deception from the beginning of Adam and Eve.  The Fallen Angels know mankind very well, and they have a customized plan for everyone on this planet.  Why? Unfortunately they too knew you before you were formed in your mother’s womb much like God and their hatred against God is for what he loves.

In the next part of this entry we will discuss how these Fallen Angels come against us, so until then God’s Blessings.

Rev. Bradley Luoma

Reaching the Same Goal from Different Paths - Thai Buddhists in Dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama

New Delhi, India, 15th December 2012 - A significant and inspiring event took place today in New Delhi, capital of India the country where Buddhism originated 2600 years ago, when a group of Thai elders among nearly 50 monks and scholars met to engage in an inter-Buddhist dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Discussants from the Thai side included Phrarajnyanakavi, Phra Dr Anil Sakya, Phra Paisal Visalo, Dr Seksan Presertkul, Dr Krissanapong Kirtikara and Dr Veerathai Santiprabhob, while His Holiness was accompanied by Prof Samdhong Rinpoche, Geshe Ngawang Samten, Geshe Lhakdor and Geshe Dorji Damdul. Nearly 300 lay Buddhists from Thailand listened rapt to their deliberations.

Words of welcome and respect were pronounced by a lady representative of the Buddhadasa Indapanno Archive that was influential in organizing the occasion. She mentioned His Holiness’s having been a spiritual friend to two Thai Elders and expressed the wish that relations between the Thai and Tibetan traditions should continue to flourish. She said the purpose of the dialogue was to strengthen faith in the Dharma; reinforce relations between Thais and Tibetans and to promote other beneficial activities.

A short film clip showing His Holiness’s second visit to Thailand in 1972 was shown, following which a message from the Thai Sangharaja, who is 100 years old, was read. He pointed out that this meeting was very much in accordance with tradition from the time of the Buddha. He noted that the Buddha was remarkably open-minded and ready to listen to others, only offering his own views when invited to do so. While Buddhism has taken on different forms in different places, these differences should not be thought of as grounds for unthinking discrimination, but should encourage us to come together in dialogue to eliminate misunderstanding.

His Holiness began his address with customary words of greeting:
“Respected Bhikkshus, Buddhist brothers and sisters, welcome. I am very happy to see this large gathering of Thai Buddhists, including many monks. Since my first visit to Thailand in 1967, I have been impressed by the strength of Buddhism in your country. I recall that in my conversations with the Sangharaja at that time I asked what he thought of the fact that while Christian monks and nuns engage in widespread social work, we Buddhists tend not to do so. His reply was that it was the rule for Buddhist monks to remain in their monastery to study and cultivate shamatha.”

His Holiness’s voice was a little hoarse, partly the result of his having a cold, but also because he has just come from giving long teachings to some 20,000 monks in South India, during which he spoke for altogether sixty hours over the last two weeks.

Noting that like all other composite phenomena, Buddhism is impermanent and will disappear, His Holiness said it has survived for 2600 years due to the support of its followers, mostly monks. Now in the twenty-first century, even in countries with no previous tradition of Buddhism, interest is growing among ordinary people and scientists. He said that what he thinks of as the Pali tradition, to which Thai Buddhism largely belongs, is the very foundation of all Buddhist traditions. The ethics and discipline described in the Vinaya are the foundation for training both in concentration (shamatha) and insight (vipassana). He clarified that with the help of concentration our mind has the ability to remain still and by applying analysis we achieve understanding.

“However,” he said, “we must remember the rest of humanity. If we can create a more peaceful world, everyone benefits. And to achieve this I think we need to take a more secular, rather than a religious, approach to fostering ethics. Karuna or compassion really brings about inner peace and inner strength. Those who practise compassion become calmer and less subject to fear.”

He backed this up by reporting that scientists have also found that when you have compassion, your physical as well as your mental health improves.

When it came to questions and answers, His Holiness had some questions of his own. He wanted to know if there was any tradition of Bhikkshuni ordination - full ordination of nuns - in the Thai tradition, bearing in mind that we know such a tradition existed during the life of the Buddha. He also wanted to know about the apparent ordination of trees and it was made clear that this was a case of protecting trees by wrapping them in the monastic robes that command universal respect in Thailand.

Asked about Buddhist practice for lay people, His Holiness said that evidently the Buddha considered lay people and monastics have an equal opportunity and it is equally possible for them to achieve liberation and enlightenment. However, monastics, with no family responsibilities only have themselves to look after and so have more time to practise. To another question about a Tibetan reference to the inseparability of samsara and nirvana, His Holiness laughed and said if we were to take this at face value, we’d have to wonder why the Buddha gave up his royal life and engaged in austerities and meditation for six years. Clarifying what happiness is he drew a distinction between short-lived sensory satisfaction like listening to music or enjoying delicious food and the more durable joy derived from mental happiness. This is an area that needs further exploration he said, remarking that English and other Western languages lack the vocabulary to discuss these matters adequately.

After lunch, speaking about “Solutions to World Problems” His Holiness referred to the violence and bloodshed that mark the twentieth century during which some historians say 200 million people died violently. He said,

“We need to find a new approach to creating a better world. We have major problems to deal with: climate change, population increase, the gap between rich and poor, and corruption. People voice anxiety about an ancient Maya prediction of the imminent end of the world, but unless we address corruption, which is like a cancer, we will face disaster. Religion is important, but has failed to check it. Democracy, the rule of law and freedom of the press should be able to put a stop to corruption, but they have failed to do so too. Even in China where these qualities are absent and all power is centralized, corruption remains rampant. The key factor is a lack of self-discipline and moral principles.”

He said once more that we need to find ways to promote secular ethics that flow from common sense and scientific findings.

“We should remember that the Buddha taught for the benefit of all human beings. We too are part of humanity. To solve these problems we have a responsibility to work together. As a Tibetan Buddhist my concern is for the whole of humanity, you too should consider more than just Thailand and Bangkok.”

Questioned about the global economic crisis, His Holiness said he was surprised when it happened and he’d asked friends about the cause. They told him that it occurred because of too much greed and speculation, so to an extent ignorance was involved. He pointed out the need to distinguish between greed and desire, because there can be positive desire such as the wish for liberation and Buddhahood.

With regard to compassion, His Holiness drew a distinction between the biased compassion we may feel for those who are close to us and the kind of pure unrestrained compassion that is able to view even our enemies as fellow human beings in need of help. Reminded that last year he said that Nirvana is not achieved through chanting and prayer, His Holiness was asked how to cultivate a proper view. He said,

“Cultivating a more holistic and realistic view takes time and steady effort. As I said I have just given a long and thorough teaching to 20,000 monks in South India. Did it bring about immediate change in their minds? I doubt it. They need to work at it over a longer period. What we need to aim for now is a kind of emotional balance; eliminating our destructive emotions is difficult but it can be done. We need to be rigorous in our training. Thank you, see you tomorrow.”

original link + photos: http://www.dalailama.com/news/post/887-reaching-the-same-goal-from-different-paths---thai-buddhists-in-dialogue-with-his-holiness-the-dalai-lama

Explanation of Demons Not Ghosts, Part 2

Continued from Explanation of Demons...Not Ghosts

Greetings and if you were with us for the last discussion we set the stage to better understand as to why “Ghosts” do not exist according to the Holy Bible.  What these “spirits” that people are encountering are the Fallen Angels and the Demonic realm that is associated to Satan.

Part 2 – In this we will cement this notion that Ghosts cannot exist based on the words of Christ and other doctrine.  To further validate the reason why one cannot linger around after death is found in the words of Luke a disciple of Christ.  Luke (A doctor by trade at that time), recorded the words of Jesus Christ of Nazareth in several very key verses found in Chapter 16.  These verses record to why Christ does exist and the stance that death is final with no possibility of lingering or not moving forward.

In Luke Chapter 16, verse 25 & 26 provide us a clue as to why once you die you cannot escape Hell and try to linger around.  The words from Jesus Christ state the following,

“But” Abraham replied, “Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony.  And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.”

This is a two part answer which is amazing, as it pertains to what happens when we die.  First of all Jesus Christ is stating the words of Abraham about the chasm between Heaven and Hell, which Christ provides validity to the fact that he is the Son of God, and would know what Abraham discussed with this ‘rich man’, because he was there at that time this discussion was occurring between Abraham and the rich man in Hell (being a righteous judge).

The second fact states that the chasm is created “so wide” that those in Hell cannot escape once judged by God for not accepting his ways or his gift given (I.e. Jesus Christ).  The very words that Jesus Christ spoke further nullifies the ability to leave hell to come back and be a ‘mean’ spirit to ‘poke, push, shove, scratch, etc…’ such as a ‘Ghost’ as paranormal teams like to embark upon with this false belief.

Now, let’s take this from another angle so to speak if we can.  Heaven has been described by the bible as a glorious and wonderful place to be.  This glory is pain free, trouble free, infinite in creation as well as design as it is referred to as the glory of all glories.

So follow me here folks, then why would you want to return to a place filled with pain, hate, anger, frustration, troubles, etc… back to this earthly realm?  Would you be doing this to ‘”warn your loved ones, tell them about the glory of Heaven, tell them not to worry that I am fine, etc…”?  This is a very plausible answer that many would say of course as I want to tell everyone, but according to the bible that is not the truth.

So if we continue on with what Christ stated about this chasm being great, the second part of Luke Chapter 16 verses 27 – 31 conclude, He answered, “Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my family, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.” Abraham replied, “They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.” “No”, father Abraham, he said, “but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.” He said to him, “If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.”

The words of Jesus Christ instruct to the people that you did not listen to the Prophets of old, nor now will you listen to me with what I say regarding death.  The only way to truly show the people was to rise from the dead, which Christ did later after his crucifixion (to appear in flesh).

Jesus Christ’s warning was an apocalyptic snapshot at that time, because people did see him raise up people from a state of “sleep” what we classify as dead today.  The sad situation is still taking place today in this world as we speak, by not listening to the words spoken in the bible through reading and acquiring discernment for the truth by being close to God.

So if Ghosts do not exist, and one cannot come back from Hell or Heaven to warn what does that leave us?  The answer is only logical:  The Fallen Angels and Demons.  Earth is referred to as “The Devils Playground”, and Satan’s minions go forth with a plan of deception for all since this is the playground they are engaged to.  1Timothy 4:1 is a great example to further your knowledge about deceiving spirits in the end times.

These seducing spirits along with our own sinful nature are responsible for the new cult movement of ‘Ghost’ hunting.  If we are to believe that ‘Ghosts’ are roaming the earth, and not the Fallen Angels, then one can be easily deceived away from other truths of the Bible as well.

Jesus Christ, who is God was born into flesh, lived, died and was raised again in order to crush the head of Satan and the minions of hell known as Demons.  His actions allow us to no longer live in fear of Death or Satan.

Now that we have laid the foundation to understand that ‘Ghosts’ cannot exist due to truths documented in the words of not only the prophets of old, but by the words of Jesus Christ himself found in the Bible.  One only has to logically understand that Satan and his minions are set forth to destroy all mankind due to the hatred they have for mankind.  Therefore since the hatred exists, then what better way to destroy all mankind than to use something that all humans have in common, curiosity.

Since Satan and the Fallen Angels know all about us, due to the length of time they have had to study us over the millennium, they would certainly know how to put a proper plan of attack together.  Once people become infatuated with knowing more about what happens in the afterlife (i.e. curiosity), then Satan already has you in his web.  Folks, nothing to prove scientifically about Demons, they exist to destroy and bring forth destruction of mankind.  The Bible clearly warns of this.

However, once that curiosity starts in a person, the plan of attack as to how the Demons can infiltrate your life becomes even more attractive to that Kingdom.  That curiosity is also known as “invitation”.

In our next series we will lay out how the plan of destruction works, as it all starts with “invitation”.

Rev. Dr. Bradley Luoma