Archive for the 'Supernatural' Category

Particle Physics and God

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I recently watched a fascinating documentary called “Particle Fever” that chronicles the search for the Higgs boson, which is sometimes called the “God Particle.”  The nickname is a bit controversial, but it shouldn’t get in the way of the substance of the documentary and the interesting all-or-nothing scenario that it set up.

You see, right now scientists explain the universe mostly by using a theory called the “Standard Model” of theoretical particle physics, which has been very good at predicting much of what experiments in physics have actually found. As described by the various scientists in the documentary, formulation of the Standard Model is the result of roughly 400 years of work, in which scientists have gradually found that the universe is something enormous yet simple, seemingly complex yet incredibly elegant and symmetrical. Indeed, symmetry (in the sense of how parts might integrate into a whole, might remain consistent and or unchanged despite any kind of transformation, and can exist independent of specific dynamics) is the kind of elegant order that begins to hint most strongly toward intelligent design, or God.

In addition, the Standard Model relies on what are called “fundamental constants,” which are numbers that determine the entire structure of the universe. Now these constants get pretty complicated, but for now just realize that everyone – from God-believing scientists to complete and total atheists – understand that these numbers are far too precise to be based on chance in just this universe. In the documentary, one scientist explained that his knowledge of this incredibly precise fine tuning naturally led him to question whether he was wrong about everything he had learned and believed on some fundamental level. What he meant was that it’s hard, if not impossible, to square this incredible precision with a Godless universe. It’s that exact.

Now if you make enough scientists question their worldviews, you’ll end up getting a new scientific theory so that they don’t have to question those worldviews anymore. And the theory that some scientists ultimately came up with to help them explain this incredible fine tuning is called the “multiverse theory.” That theory speculates that our universe is actually only one of multiple possible universes – so many, like millions or billions (the kinds of numbers evolutionists like to use) that those really precise numbers that make up our fundamental constants might still only be random. If you have a billion universes, so the theory goes, one might randomly end up like our universe – which looks so precise that it must have been created by some intelligent being, but which is really created by chance. This can get a bit complex, too, so if you want to see a more detailed write- up about the multiverse theory versus intelligent design, go here: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/multiverse-and-the-design-argument.

But for now, just realize that the Standard Model absolutely predicted something like the Higgs boson as one of its essential particles, and so the documentary that I watched showed scientists using the Large Hadron Collider near Geneva Switzerland to try to detect it. Everyone figured it was out there, but they had different theories about what it would mean to the universe and, indeed, to the future of physics. And all of that depended on not only finding the Higgs, but also learning its mass.

The reason scientists needed to know its mass was because a “light” Higgs boson is the kind of thing that would correspond to the symmetry of the Standard Model, and even helps lend credence to what’s called “supersymmetry,” in which additional particles might likely be discovered to build a complicated but even more elegant way of describing the universe. A “heavy” Higgs, on the other hand, would tend to point to various theories using the concepts of the multiverse. But here’s the rub: if, in fact, the multiverse theory were to be confirmed, it would mean that everything in our universe might be completely random, caused not by intelligence but chaos. And if that were true, then physicists could never be sure that they’d ever find answers to anything else because the answers to any number of questions in a multiverse theory might only be found in other universes, which means that we might never find them at all. In fact, most everybody in the documentary felt like a heavy Higgs might mean the end of physics altogether. Pretty dramatic, huh?

So the movie came down to this. If the Higgs mass was about 115 times the mass of a proton, it would point to supersymmetry. If it was about 140 times the mass of a proton, it would point to multiverse. Order and elegance versus chaos, or, as some people might speculate, God versus no God.

All of this is interesting, but sometimes I think that people miss the forest for the trees, or the universe for the particles in this case. In Paul’s letter to the Romans, he wrote: “For since the creation of the world, God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” (Romans 1:20) We have been without excuse since creation, and now we have even less of an excuse to clearly see and know the existence and glory of God. Back in the day, scientists like Isaac Newton, Robert Boyle, Francis Bacon, Blaise Pascal, Louis Pasteur, and countless others worked within their knowledge and belief of the existence of God and with the notion that their discoveries were guided by God. The famous astronomer and mathematician Johannes Kepler, wrote, “I see how God is, by my endeavors, also glorified in astronomy, for ‘the heavens declare the glory of God.’” (quoting Psalm 19:1).

Why, then, do so many people miss what is so obvious to others? Why do they reject the notion of God so adamantly that they’ll create theory after theory to debunk any idea of intelligent design?  I think the reason is found in two separate scriptures. First, in 2 Peter 3:5, Peter writes that people will “deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water.” And through this deliberate forgetfulness, since they “d[o] not know the righteousness that comes from God [and they seek] to establish their own, they [do] not submit to God’s righteousness.” (Romans 10:3) In short, people forget what is obvious to the rest of the world because they simply don’t want to serve anyone. They want to be their own god. But hey, as Bob Dylan once sang, “It may be the devil or it may be the Lord, but you’re gonna have to serve somebody.”

Anyway, back to the Higgs and the documentary. Now I personally don’t need to know the mass of a particle to convince me that God exists. And I assume that if the Higgs came back light and the multiverse theory was somehow discredited, people who simply don’t want to believe in God would figure out some other theory to cast doubt. But leave it to God Himself to remind us who is in control here. Because when they ultimately found the Higgs – and they did – its mass was exactly dead center between 115 and 140, which left both sides scratching their heads. We thought we had it all figured out. We thought it was all or nothing. But God said it was neither. It was something else entirely. It’s not so much the “God Particle” as it is simply one of God’s particles. Like everything else, God created the Higgs, and its mass is what it is. Now deal with it.

And finally, why in the world would I write about this interesting natural world drama in a blog about the supernatural? Well, because in the middle of the documentary, during one of the trial runs for the Large Hadron Collider as they were counting down toward the test, something truly fascinating happened. During that countdown from five to one, at just around minute 27:51 of the documentary, the camera cut to a young scientist waiting for the test to begin. And as the countdown reached three, she closed her eyes and briefly bowed her head. I think she prayed.

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The Pattern of the World

I’m way off track on my goal of switching from full-time criminal justice reform to creating a new album and studying more about God. It’s super frustrating, but I can see some light. Plus, I consider everything I do with criminal justice reform still to be doing God’s will – in fact, I call what I do “God’s Project,” because of all the things He’s done to make it happen. So if He wants me to keep it up, I will. Part of walking in the supernatural is to hear God and do what He says no matter what else you think you want to do. We’ll see.

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Last week I watched with amusement the Family Leadership Summit, where each of most of the Republican candidates for president answered questions about pretty much everything, including God. I watched a lot of strange answers, including a guy who said that he never asks for forgiveness (apparently he doesn’t need it), but that he enjoys eating that “little cracker.” Most of the answers made me think that everyone was just trying to find that perfect balance between talking about God and not saying anything too crazy to lose votes. Political Christianity.

A lot of America is probably content with these kinds of answers. But if you’re a follower of Jesus, you have to get used to living in a foreign land – the natural world, where everything Jesus said and did often seems crazy to most everyone else. For a moment, I wondered what it would look like if a candidate for president was truly someone who believed in all that Jesus taught and modeled. Someone who believed in the supernatural. Someone who understood the transcendent force of love for all persons, even those who are unloved by the world. What would he say? Would he be called a “Republican?” Would he even be there?

In my opinion, if Jesus himself were in Ames Iowa that day, he wouldn’t have been labeled as either a Republican or a Democrat. If he spoke to anybody, he probably would have spoken of things that people simply wouldn’t have understood. Just like before, he would have spoken of wonderful things to give hope to all humanity, but he also likely would have spoken about things that would have made people want to kill him. The more I think about it, the more I believe that he wouldn’t have even gone in to the Summit – I think he would have spent his time looking for the poor and displaced people that were somewhere in the backstreets of Ames.

If you’re like me, and you want to follow this radical named Jesus, you have to realize that some things he said might be labeled ultra-conservative, while other things might be considered downright socialist. And so to truly follow Jesus, you’re going to have to get used to feeling like a complete outcast in the natural world. That’s to be expected. In Romans 12, Paul wrote, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.”  Jesus mentions being “not of this world” a few times, and one commentary explains one of those statements quite succinctly: “The Spirit of God in true Christians is opposed to the spirit of the world.”

If the whole political thing just frustrates and confuses you – especially when they talk about God – then that’s a good thing. In my opinion, that’s just you listening to the Spirit of God and not conforming to the pattern of the world.

Be blessed, everyone!

Spiritual Warfare in South Carolina

When we all learned about someone killing nine followers of Jesus Christ in the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in South Carolina, some said it was the most unbelievable and unimaginable thing possible. Inside a church? After a bible study?  People tried to label it – a hate crime, a terrorist act, perhaps something unable even to be labeled. But today the headline on CNN spoke the truth, as it quoted the Reverend Norvel Goff as saying that, “No evildoer, no demon in hell or on earth can close the doors of God’s church.” Indeed, this attack was brought on by evil. It was a part of the spiritual war.

This ministry is not geared toward people who aren’t followers of Jesus Christ. It’s called “Arming the Saints” because it’s main goal is to help followers of Jesus recognize the supernatural, and to react accordingly. And if you’re a follower of Jesus Christ, then you believe in the Bible and what the Bible teaches. And if you believe in what the Bible teaches, you should see the truth of recognizing something demonic at work inside the church in South Carolina.

The Bible is clear that we’re in a spiritual war: “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Eph. 6:12). Knowing this, if someone would have asked me where some of the heaviest fighting would be, I would have said, quite confidently, inside our churches and against God’s people. There’s nothing unimaginable about a demon wanting to come into a church to harm followers of Christ. It’s exactly what I would expect.

Now, I’ve been in a lot of church buildings, and I’ve been in more than I’d like to mention with some demonic presence. I know it sounds bad, but it happens (virtually always unintentionally), and so I’ve done my share of rebuking demons even inside what we like to think are some of our most hallowed buildings. But I’ve also been in church buildings with such an incredibly strong covering of prayer and rebuking that no demonic presence can even get close. And, please, don’t get me wrong. I am by no means saying that any of the people in the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church did anything wrong. They are Saints, losing them is a horrible loss, and I only hope that when I go, I go like them – praising Jesus Christ while facing down evil with the knowledge of God’s grace and an awaiting eternity.

But a spiritual issue requires a spiritual response. So when you hear the natural world talk about how to keep this “unimaginable” thing from happening in the future, remember that Ephesians 6 gives us the true answer: “Therefore, put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.”

May God bless and show His infinite grace to all persons.

Special Needs — Special Spirits

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I haven’t told too many people this before, but there’s a thing I do to calm down when life gets really hectic.

When you ask most people how they calm down, they’ll tell you they meditate, or breathe slowly, or maybe take a pill or something. If they’re followers of Christ, they may say that they pray or read the Bible. I’ve done most of these things, but that’s only because they’re a bit more convenient than the way I know that works best for me.

My way of reducing stress involves hanging around people with special needs.

You see, I have what the Bible calls the gift of discernment, which is one of the gifts listed in 1 Corinthians 12. I have other gifts, but when I test for it, my gift of discernment is kind of off the charts. By the way, if you haven’t taken a class on the gifts, or haven’t taken a test or two attempting to figure out your gifts – and yes, you definitely have at least one – then I really encourage you to do so. I mean, if you spend enough time in the world, you’ll take about 20 personality tests that try to figure out how you work with other people (so you can say, for example, “I’m a purple introverted INXP!”). A spiritual gifts test will tell you how you work with other people according to God’s purpose for your life, and that seems like a more useful thing to know.

Anyway, discernment simply means that I can discern spirits, good and bad. When it’s strong, I can sense spirits from a distance and in varying degrees. Like a lot of things, that can be a blessing and a curse. For example, you’d think that certain places, like churches, would only have good spirits in them. Not true. And you’d think other places, like cemeteries, might have bad spirits in them. In fact, I’ve found that cemeteries tend not to have any spirits in them at all (which makes cemeteries a fabulous place for me to run in peace.) I’m drawn to people with good spirits, and I have had to work in the world with people with not-so-good spirits. Of course, there’s more to it than all of this, and those of you with discernment know how quickly you can freak people out if you talk about it too much or explain all the different ways it works.

This is a roundabout way of saying that when I’m in the presence of people with special needs, I sense only good spirits – really, really good spirits – and that being around them calms me down. In fact, if I’m feeling especially weird, I’ll go looking for them just to be in the presence of their spirits. There’s something so pure and good inside each one of them, and I’m reminded of God’s love and presence in every one of us. I am reassured by a God who takes a human body that some people will unfortunately say is “bad” or “not normal”, and then places a spirit inside them that shines so brightly. I think it’s one of His ways of, once again, explaining the Kingdom as a place that is simply different from this world.

Not too long ago, the well-known atheist, Richard Dawkins, commented on what a woman should do if she learned that her baby was going to be born with Down syndrome. He said, “Abort it and try again.” Like a lot of what Dawkins says, it’s not so much shocking as profoundly sad, and wholly neglects even to imagine what a beautiful emissary for God’s Kingdom a child with Down syndrome would be.

I mention this last thing not to condemn him or to depress you, but only to emphasize the vast difference between the natural and the supernatural worlds. We live in the natural world, but the supernatural world is our home, and it’s clearly that world that gives you the best insight into special needs people. So if you see a person with special needs, remember what a discerner told you about them. Special needs – special spirits.

Is Pope Francis the Final Pope?

Hi All;

It’s not often that I write about bible prophesy, but I’m constantly looking for things that will herald in the return of Jesus. “Thy Kingdom Come on Earth” is one of my mottos, after all.

I recently read about two authors who dissected what’s known as Saint Malachy’s Prophesy of the Popes, which predicts (and says a little something about) the 112 Popes coming after Celestine II in 1144. Now, I know that some people have argued over these prophesies, and some folks have even claimed they’re forgeries. But these two authors got my attention when they said that they used the Malachy Prophesies to predict that Pope Benedict XVI would resign from office – the first Pope to do so in 600 years. In fact, these two predicted that Benedict would resign in March 2012, and, when that didn’t happen, they felt that maybe they got it wrong. But when he actually resigned in 2013, the news got out that the 2013 resignation was just for the public – his official resignation before the Cardinals was in March of 2012! Now, that’s some pretty specific fulfilled prophesy.

I guess my point is that unfulfilled prophesy is prophesy, after all, and it’s going to be subject to some debate until it actually happens. But just think about how often it has happened in the Bible! I mean, before Jesus came, there were about 350 prophesies about the coming Messiah, and Jesus ended up fulfilling them all. Of these 350, there were over a hundred that were so specific that only Jesus (and no other arguable messiah) could have fulfilled them. I once read that a statistician had calculated the probability of Christ fulfilling just 8 of these specific prophesies (from being born in Bethlehem, to riding into Jerusalem on a donkey, to being crucified) and found that the odds were something like 1 x 10 to the 28th power, which is a 10 with 27 zeroes after it. By fulfilling 48 prophesies, it would be 1 x 10 to the 157th power (by the way, the odds of you becoming President of the United States are only 1 x 10 to the 7th power). So, unfulfilled prophesy is debatable, but proven prediction is worth paying attention to.

These same two authors have used the same Malachy document to now predict that the current Pope will be the last, ushering in the Tribulation.  That’s mostly because the list only goes up to 112, and we are now at that number. Of Pope number 112, the document reads: In the final persecution of the Holy Roman Church, there will sit Peter the Roman, who will pasture his sheep in many tribulations, and when these things are finished, the city of seven hills will be destroyed, and the dreadful judge will judge his people. The End.

Take a look at this article from Prophecy News Watch about the new Pope, Francis, and why the authors believe him to be “Peter the Roman.”

http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/   Scroll down to #8 “Pope Francis – History’s Final Pontiff?”

Also, you might want to take a peek at Sid Roth’s It’s Supernatural programs below, which have the two authors discussing their predictions.

http://www.sidroth.org/site/News2?abbr=tv_&page=NewsArticle&id=12914    Select “Television Its Supernatural” and view parts 1 and @ of the April episodes for Tom Horn & Cris Putnam

Be Faithful and Be Blessed!

Dreams and Visions

Dreams and Visions

Did you know that a sign of the end times is an increase in prophetic dreams and visions? The Bible says,

In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. (Acts 2:17 and Joel 2:28 (NIV))

I have been experiencing spiritual and prophetic dreams more frequently over the past year. In future posts, I’ll share them and their meanings with you. But first, I want to tell you why I believe this is happening to me and how you can share in this blessing.

As we mentioned in our book, 7 Spiritual Truths and the Lies that Hide Them, God will speak to you in the way that He knows that you will listen. My husband actively looks for signs in nature showing that God is working with him on various things. Because of that, God sends signs through nature to my husband (these are big and obvious supernatural signs – the kind that would make you say, “Wow, did you see that?!”). In the book, we joke that if you believe that God will speak to you through billboards, then you better start looking at all of the billboards. But seriously, think about how you listen for God to speak to you. Is it through your feelings? Is it through visions? Does He talk to you out loud? Maybe he speaks to you through other people. I know a lot of people who were seeking God when suddenly someone came out of nowhere and helped them through their troubles with just the right supernatural advice.

You may have had a relationship with someone in which you knew what they were thinking before they even said anything. I would never presume to know what God is thinking, but once you know how He speaks to you, it becomes much easier to really KNOW that it is Him who is speaking. And then as your level of communication deepens, your relationship becomes more intimate.

These days I talk to God constantly, and I am constantly watching for His reply. Sometimes it comes with just a “Holy Spirit-type” feeling, but lately it’s been in dreams. Because I am open to hearing from God in dreams, He is using them to speak to me.

I am so excited about this new gift, and I am equally excited to share it with you!  I want you to feel like you are walking hand-in-hand with God each moment of each day, and to feel the closeness of your loving Father.

Why “Arming the Saints?”

You may have wondered why we are called Arming the Saints Ministries. The short answer is because helping to equip current believers with knowledge and information is what God placed on our hearts many years ago. It came from a broken-hearted realization that we – and many of our Christian brethren – often did not know why we believed what we believed, and that we were often unaware of the authority we possess as believers to operate in both the natural and supernatural worlds.

After years of studying, researching, and plain ol’ on-the-job life training, we realized that we had to strive to acquire more supernatural education and share it with the world!

God sent me to Denver Seminary to expand my knowledge and give me the tools to research and write our book. When I say “our” book, I mean the book that God gave me the information to write – thus, “we” equals God, me, and Tim. The book is called:

“7 Spiritual Truths and the Lies that Hide Them

Supernatural 101 for Arming the Saints”

I will be giving you snippets from the book and I will often refer back to it in many of our upcoming blogs. If you would like more information about the book, you can find it on our Arming the Saints website at www.armingthesaints.com


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