About the Occult :: PODCAST

Presented by Pastor Steve Shields at Curwensville Alliance on 10/29/2017

On October 8, I preached a sermon about the different between contractual faith and covenantal faith.

Contractual faith is superstitious, ritualistic, controlling, and fear-based. Covenantal faith is loving, relational, peaceful, and trust-based.

Click the image above for that podcast.

A week or so later, Kelly, a woman in the congregation, sent me this message in response to that sermon. She graciously gave me permission to share it, in the hopes that others might find what she’s found.

Today I am so thankful for your sermon the other week on responses to fear and a mechanized religion. I have often prayed out of fear and my own anxieties and rituals that I could blow your mind with. For every bad situation life brought to me or a family member, I would add that to my daily sometimes quadruple daily prayer. It became so ritualistic that at times I think I really didn’t have any other communication with Jesus.

After that Sunday at church I really started, at age 38, to talk to Jesus like a friend. Like he was right there. I have felt so much peace over the past few weeks.

Then yesterday I get that call… Mom has fallen and has broken her shoulder. Immediately I get this awful feeling, an indescribable guilt… a voice saying, “Kelly you didn’t pray for the ‘no falls” thing you always pray. Mom fell because you didn’t say it out loud. You always say that prayer and for the past 2 weeks you didn’t and this is what happens….”

I almost gave into it. In fact I immediately prayed my prayer… the hurried “dear Jesus, please protect my family from automobile accidents, any kind of accidents, murderers, burglars, rapists, stalkers, kidnappers, gunmen, and shooters. Please keep us safe from all kinds of sickness, illnesses, falls, burns, fires and storms.” Also I would add any other new anxiety that came to mind that could harm me or my family!

So I start saying this prayer that I’ve prayed since age 14 or 15 and I get to the falls part and I heard another voice. Not the Kelly voice of a kid who lives in fear and anxiety…it was a mighty voice. A voice that I have probably blocked out all of these years and missed out on… a voice of a father who can, with one touch of a hand, calm you.

He said, “I already got all of that. I have you. I have your family. Talk to me.

What? So I did. In my car I let it all out again to my friend.

I cried. I wailed.

Then I laughed. I laughed at my sad little religion that I had made, when all of this time it’s so simple. God is for me. He is for my family. He has this. He isn’t going to prevent disasters from happening.

He IS.

And he will be there for when they do happen.

That first voice that Kelly heard was one she likely heard years ago from the enemy of her soul.

The podcast here speaks about who the enemy is, how he wants to damage us, and how we can stand against him. 
-Pastor Steve

 

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What Is It That You Are Looking For? :: PODCAST

Presented by Pastor Steve Shields at Curwensville Alliance Church

We’re looking for something more.

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There are examples in society. Consider the never-ending interest in religion. In spite of the fact that atheism has a voice to speak into culture like never before, people are still seeking spirituality. You’ve read reports – and I’ve been reading them for three decades now – that the church is dying. It’s not. It’s changing. Not dying. Mark Twain once wrote a note to a friend who’d heard he was sick. In actuality it was a cousin of Mark’s – A James Clemens, who was sick. Twain wrote to his worried friend: “The report of my illness grew out of his illness. The report of my death was an exaggeration.” The death of the North American church is a bit of an exaggeration as well. People are looking for something more.

In fact, people who’ve not experienced God are finding themselves drawn toward him and his people – toward the church. They are looking for something more. Many, who are not interested in Christianity, are fascinated by other religions. They’re attracted to Buddhism. Islam. Hinduism. They are looking for something more.

Another example is the interest in occult practices. Through the years, I’ve known people who practice Wicca – pagan witchcraft. They, too, are looking for something more. Wicca isn’t making it for them. I know Wicca isn’t making it for them because I have met them – looking for something more – in my church.

Another example is the consistent success of television shows about mediums. They keep coming back. And people keep watching. Why? People are looking for something more.

This podcast suggests what we are really looking for, and tells us how to find it.

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SERMON: Jesus Is Better than Spiritism

Presented October 31, 2010

If you ever participated in a séance or watched a medium on television, you know they say things like: Grandma is glad you are living in her house. Dad wants you to know he loves you. Uncle Billy is glad you are working where he worked. Your daughter is happy that you remarried.

What are the chances that all those people would actually be happy about those things? I can imagine Grandma saying, “Why did you sell my teapot collection on eBay?” I can hear Dad saying, “Have you changed the oil in your car?” I can hear Uncle Billy saying, “Why are you working there? Go to college, you screwball!” And I can hear your daughter saying, “How could you remarry already? Mom’s only been dead for a year!”

Why don’t you hear that stuff? Because generally, the speaker is not telling you the truth. He’s either a fraud — making things up. Or he’s demonically motivated — lying because he wants you to believe in something other than God.

There are many reasons that Jesus is better than a spiritist. One reason is that while a spiritist will be glad to tell you want you want to hear, Jesus (the Way, the Truth, and the Life) will never lie to you.

This podcasts speaks of this and presents some other reasons Jesus is better.

You can download the mp3 here. The audio is also available on iTunes.

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