Stories about the supernatural realm saturate our culture. We hear and see tales of magicians and sorceress, warring gods, and spiritual beings that influence and even control humanity for good and evil. The supernatural realm is the stuff of fiction and entertainment, and the stories generally terrify us.
God of the gaps; devil of the gaps
But in day to day life, people tend to rely on public opinion, the social and physical sciences, and wisdom of popular culture. In the 1940s, German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote in his Letters & Papers from Prison that God was increasingly being pushed out of a world that had come of age.
Self-reliant, grown up people reach the end of themselves, most often in a crisis, and call out to God. He fills the gap of what we cannot handle. He’s the “god of the gaps.” The crisis passes and people rely on themselves and the wisdom of the world. Even Christians act as if God is standing in the wings waiting for them to need Him.
In a similar way, we have the devil-of-the-gaps. Children kill children and governments authorize wholesale slaughter of innocent people. We might hear, “Could Satan have been involved?” The crisis passes, and the devil of the gaps is not given serious thought.
There is a strong anti-supernatural bias in our culture. We pride ourselves on our self-reliance.
When we diminish God’s sovereignty and supernatural involvement in our lives, we also marginalize Satan and the demons, lest he terrify us. But when we know the power, grandeur, and righteousness of God the Father, God the Son Jesus Christ and God the Holy Spirit, the demonic realm does not frighten us. We can learn what demons can and cannot do.
Biblically, only two spiritual sources exist: God and Satan. But they are not equals.
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him (Colossians 1:15–16).
All things were created from the Father, through the Son in the power of the Holy Spirit created—including the angels who rebelled against God. The rebel angel does not threaten God or his sovereign rule over his creation. But Satan would like us to think he does.
I address such things in my ministry and on this site in videos and blogs.
You canfollow me on Facebook at Sharon Beekmann Ministries where I post on angels and demons and the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Enticed by the Light: The Terrifying Story of One Woman’s Encounter with the New Age. This book describes my involvement with New Age thought and the supernatural realm. I was overcome by demons until I turned to Jesus Christ who set me free.
Silencing Satan: Handbook of Biblical Demonology. Dr. Rev. Peter Bolt and I co-authored this book. We saw a need for this book, because for a variety of reasons, evangelical preachers and Bible teachers exhort Christians not to sin and give the devil a foothold, but tend to be silent on what these evil supernatural beings actually can and cannot do. In some Old and New Testament chapters, we provide applications for Christian living.
A study guide for Silencing Satan and the books are available on Amazon and WipfandStock website.
Join me in learning more about God and His victory over evil –Satan, sin and death—when he atoned for human sin on the cross and rose from the dead.