And the Spirits Danced (#653)

Brad is out of town, so Wayne invites an old friend, Bob Prater, to join him on the podcast as they talk about the level of political rancor in the last few weeks and a vision Bob believes the Lord gave him a month ago. It will be controversial, no doubt, but it resonated so deeply with Wayne that he wanted to process it with Bob here.  So, after catching up a bit personally, they turn their attention to the current political and religious landscape. They work through Bob's vision and what it might mean for people who care about the future of our country and what is happening now to tear it apart.

Podcast Notes:
Bob's podcast, A Christian and a Muslim Walk Into a Studio
Previous podcast with Bob 
Tim Keller's Article: How Do Christians Fit Into the Two-Party System? They Don't
Wayne's Travel Schedule
The latest news from our project in Kenya
Add your voice to our question/comment line via Skype at "TheGodJourney"

17 Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing this conversation (part 1 anyway) (smile). I have less people to share this “journey” with here in Canada…am seeing that Jesus will bring people into my life where and when He wants to. I have been aware of “tension” in my own heart in the sense there is a battle b/t the enemy and the Kingdom of God. I have had no specific visions as such but am aware of this tension. This is like the binoculurs slowly being focused….like you have said, “God gives each of us a little part…many of these little parts make up the whole of what He is doing”. Blessings, Sue

  2. Hegelian Dialectic – create the tension via two or more sides in conflict to achieve the actual, unstated outcome. That, it seems to me, is the purpose of the two party political system. Paul said, “that no one of you be puffed up for one against another.” 1Cor 4:6 There has to be the juxtaposition against another to be puffed up for one. Seems to me pride demands it, and this is about manipulating our pride. “See me! I’m for her/him, I’m not stupid enough to be for the other.” And we loose sight of their humanity in the process, and our own – we are all to be image bearers of God.
    I really like the Room B choice… come out from among them, and be separate, says the Lord.

  3. I loved this podcast. I have major concern about the direction our country is moving in. I find it increasingly difficult having open conversations with others the closer we get to the midterms. I have remained an independent voter throughout my life. I remember having awesome conversations with family and friends during past election cycles, yet I am finding this difficult in the current environment. Room B really makes sense to me.

    I am going to listen to this one again. Looking forward to tuning in next week. Thanks guys! Great conversation!

  4. I sure hope the last line of this podcast gets debated.
    God never wanted government.

    He gave it to us because we are children who demanded “a king like all those other nations have.”

    Government is an old broken toy that we insist on playing with even though we should have moved on to something else.

    • Hey Bill Fenstermaker (Jr),

      I agree with you on what you said… I think a lot of the problem is that people want a king to rule over them.

  5. Wayne,

    I know you’ve said in the past you’re a news junky! Because of exactly what Bob has shared in this podcast, I stopped watching the news about a year ago or so. I’m blissfully ignorant! I feel that the news and even social media almost ‘aren’t even real’ if that makes sense.

    I’m wondering what your thoughts on this are? Do you think opting out of watching our culture keeps us away from the influence of these deceiving spirits? I do feel like somewhat of an irresponsible citizen; however, I also feel that the enemy has completely taken over ‘current events’ as a means of distracting us from the Kingdom.

    • From Wayne: I don’t watch near as much news as I used to. It just wears on me, and I don’t feel like I’m getting an honest perspective from either side anymore. I try to find more reasoned articles in various venues that gives a more honest and reasoned view that can criticize and applaud either side depending on what they are doing. But I don’t go for the day to day bickering of left/right blather. I do think it dulls our senses to what’s true and forces us to be in one camp or the other. I’m in neither at this point, and rooting for a bitter conversation and better media resources necessary to bring our country together. I don’t blame anyone who cuts it all off. If that’s what you need for peace of mind and being able to be more sensitive to the breath of the Spirit, that’s awesome.

      At another level it is impossible too stay ignorant of our culture. You can keep up just by watching people around you and trends in the culture. Hard to miss all of that without blinders! 🙂

  6. I understand Wayne’s dislike of the expression “God using”. Everything God tells us, He does Himself. He is the first to follow the Golden Rule. In Ephesians we are told “to submit one to another.” I believe God submits to us as we submit unto Him. Like the analogy of the dance: sometimes we follow His lead, and other times He follows our leads.

  7. I’m baack … It’s been many months since I’ve listened and even more since I commented. I got a nudge Friday to listen and what a treat! Bob, I’ve been following you since your first podcast on TGJ and also your Christian and Muslim. A few quick comments…

    God Friended Me: I delivered a ‘sermon’ Aug 5 that contained this exact statement. Talked about the post-resurrection “do you love me” between Jesus and Peter. (the love word changes in Greek) Then this TV show appeared. I like where the show is going!

    When I was a teenager, I joined a Jesus People outreach group. I spent only a year with them, but it shaped much of my life. I understand the all-in and the angst. For 40 years I have been watching for revival, which has been both exciting and disappointing. Instead of revival in this season of life, God is leading me into a time of reformation / transformation, both personally and corporately. After all, his prime directive is not to revive us, but to conform each human being into the image of Jesus, which is permanent and eternal.

    Good comment, Bob, “must lose the lenses of experience.” Disappointment comes when I have an expectation that is dashed. I have a life-long habit of misinterpreting my experience and misunderstanding God’s involvement in it. I have attributed and blamed God for most of my disappointments, by expecting him to be someone he is not, or expecting him to do something he doesn’t.

    “You don’t know what spirit you are of.” “Get behind me Satan.” Generally we are confused between what is godly and not godly; what is the Kingdom and what is not. Probably because we don’t know God the way we need to. We’re scared to let him define himself to us in a way that we will understand. “The Lion of Judah is behind you. I turned and saw a lamb.” The king is a shepherd. We miss seeing God’s presence right in front of our noses. Expectation instead of expectancy.

    Thank you, Bob, for sharing your vision. The spirit of politics and the spirit of religion teaming up to seduce the church into a dance of deception and destruction. Wow. Heavy words. It is hard to realize that God is not political, not religious, and maybe not even ‘Christian’ the way that we understand the term.

    I sense that the Holy Spirit is at work deeply in the current environment by EXPOSURE; bringing things to light and to the surface of social consciousness; revealing the truth of the way things actually are. #METOO, sexual abuse by priests and the cover-up, Brett Cavanagh is me (and every other teenage boy), etc. The justice system is now about winning or losing, rather than truth. Our democracy is much more fragile than we thought. There is much more at risk than we ever realized. Government will only be right when it is squarely on Jesus’ shoulders.

    Coming alive in Jesus is the whole thing. Always has been. Always will be.

  8. Thanks for this podcast. I identify with Elijah when we was convinced he was the only one who hadn’t bowed the knee to an idol–in this case the idol that is American politics. Thanks for reminding me I’m not alone. (Check out my blog post titled, “I Used to Live in a Christian Bubble.” Similar thoughts. )

  9. This vision seems like it should be broadcasted to the Body of Christ…like a letter sent to the believers of a certain city in the Bible, this vision would be good to be sent at large to the believers in States and beyond. Thank you for broadcasting it here….hope it continues to be shared…would be nice if it could be shared on a special news report on all tv stations ?

  10. Great program that I think we have to beware of, I have had this discussion with my bible groups for sometime. They think Trump is gods chosen and I argue that it is not black and white, it is not one is good and one is evil. I have always had them go back to Kings when God gave Israel kings even when he told them no. And they went on to have numerous bad kings. God let them over to what they thought they wanted and that led to years of pain and chaos. He made his people wonder in the desert for 40 years when they did not trust him. I think the hardest thing for Christian is the fact they have this belief that God is controlling everything that happens like a puppet master and I just don’t see it that way, especially if you read the Bible and see how he lets people over to their ways for years but eventually works out his plan.

  11. In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth, and plant life, and the animals, and He established order from the chaos. When it was safe, He created Man and put him in a garden where all his needs were met, and where God and man could hang out. The Creator said “you are safe here; everything you need is here; I am here with you—you can trust me; there is nothing that can hurt you…well, except for this one tree. Stay away from it; it will kill you.” Life was good—full of rest and Shalom. Then, came The Lie. The evil one suggested that maybe God had not been totally forthcoming about that tree, that maybe He had withheld the REAL reason He said “Don’t eat”, that maybe He had ulterior, self-serving motives after all. That one tiny seed of doubt, planted in human brains, took root and grew faster than Kudzu on a Georgia hill, turning one part of those brains into Emergency Broadcasting Systems, perpetually scanning the environment for threats that activated the siren screech, “Danger! Danger! Danger!”

    Millennia later, the Lie seems to still be burning deep within the human psyche. Even when things seem to be relatively quiet, it smolders like an electrical fire hidden in the walls, unseen, until a blast of oxygen causes it to burst into full blaze. Born with the primal need to feel safe, Human Body-Minds cannot sustain the perpetual dis-ease (disease?) of this unnamed ever-present apprehension. So, we look for what—or who—makes us so uncomfortable, because if we can identify the source of the angst, we can eliminate it. We begin to tell ourselves stories that explain the fear: “THEY hate women. THEY hate people of color. THEY hate Muslims. THEY hate Christians. THEY hate US.” THEY. THEY. THEY. Always THEY.

    Once identified, people have a bundle of strategies to deal with the perceived threats. Some, overwhelmed by feelings of powerlessness and helplessness, just try to drown out the fear with chemicals, or shopping, or working, or playing, or busyness, or binge-watching Netflix—anything to keep their minds either numbed or too busy to “hear” the drone of terror. Others go to restaurants and Senate Galleries and Supreme Court steps and scream their rage and fear into the faces of those deemed to represent the ones who genuinely hurt them. Some, like the young mother raised in Neo-Puritanism, turn to “religious disciplines”, rising at 3:00 a.m., even though she admits to being exhausted and in need of sleep, to read her Bible and persevere in prayer because she is overwhelmed by Life and MUST do those things in order to secure her safety and the safety of her small children; she declares they will be “at church” every time the doors are opened because “their lives depend on it.” Others find comfort in gathering around the teachings of a short, fiery preacher from Texas who lays all the blame for our troubled souls on taking prayer out of the schools, and putting 500 “f” words in a movie, and legalizing gay marriage, and abortion, and mothers forsaking the homes to work in the business world , and he promises that God is bringing His imminent wrath on all those who have deviated from holiness, and that He has been sending the “sinners” warning shots in the form of hurricanes and wild fires and terrorist attacks; but, those pale in comparison to the devastation Rambo-Jesus is about to unleash. Then, there are the people who congregate in “armies”, rallying around the battle cry to “storm the castle/seize the land”. They use military language, military strategies, against the “Prinicipalities and Powers”. They have weaponized “praise and worship”, believing that it gives them great power so that they can manipulate the spirit world with their words and songs. Every struggle (health, finances, job, family) is a stronghold to be brought down or is an “attack of the enemy” to be resisted. Scriptures and prophetic utterances become a sorcerer’s tome, filled with chants, incantations, and instructions on how to defeat the evil one.

    We find safety in distraction, (“I just won’t think about it”.) in rage-filled attacks, (“I will fight and stand up for myself.”) in following religious rules(“if I do A+B+C, it equals safety”), in the promise of God wiping out all the “bad guys”(“I am safe from His wrath if I maintain holiness”) , in believing we are a might army that can control evil spirits (“If battles are lost, it is because I failed to do something right”). But, no matter what the action, the one thing they all have in common is coping or push-back against the Lie:

    HE doesn’t really care about you at all; SO…you are on your own; it’s all up to you.

    The day we decided it was not safe to rely on HIM, was the day we decided to just rely on ourselves—and the day all our sorrows began.

    praying the Lie is exposed,

    pam

    • Yes, we do some or all of these things because we don’t really believe God IS Love and therefore loves us (just as He loves Jesus, John 17:23). I didn’t believe it for decades. If you would have asked me, I would have said of course God loves me, but my inner striving to appease my sense of shame betrayed any such confidence. I must do better, be good enough, do good enough!

      Usually this was subconscious, but occasionally it popped to the surface leaving me wondering what more of God I didn’t know. The BEST ADVICE I have received in 30 years was to ask God for a revelation of His love for me in the Cross of Christ Jesus, and to keep seeking Him for it! I did.

      I didn’t know, really, experientially, how much God really does love me (and you!), and now find myself growing in a real active trust in His goodness and faithfulness. This has made all the difference!
      The Cross whereby God commended/proved His love for us. The “foolishness” of simple faith received by revelation produced what the wisdumb of man, the intelectual knowledge of God, gnosis, never could. 1Cor 1:17-21

      The Cross really is the power of God unto salvation when mixed with faith (rather than doubt, knowledge or striving). Hebrews 4:11, We must labor to enter into His rest, at last begins to make practical sense.

      Thank you, Abba, for the Cross of Christ Jesus!

  12. Wow! I loved this! It helped me so much….I have gotten the scriptures you have been talking about. I know listening to the news makes me feel yukky. I end up yelling at the TV at the “blind ones”….the ones I think are blind. I get angry…don’t want to be angry…it wastes too much energy. I didn’t think I was as wrapped up in it as much as some of my other brothers and sisters. But I am! SO….I pray for the grace to live in these times…for such a time as this, I hear so many people complaining that they can’t sleep and that they are depressed….one of my neighbors is 98 and she said she came to the conclusion that her friend was always depressed because of politics! I think she was right and a lot more on the ball than I am! Thank you guys for sharing that vision. It is soo right on! Wayne, you have been such a blessing to me! I have read 2 of your books and I am reading He Loves Me right now. And of course THE SHACK. I have read the book twice and seen the movie…well, I own it and I have lost count how many times. Thank you, thank you, thank you! P.S. I already have you on e-mail.

    • FROM WAYNE: Hi Sarah. These are tricky times to live in for sure, and if we let the political dialog own us it is easy to grow discouraged. So blessed to hear how some of our things have touched you. Thank you.

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