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Friday, October 3

Vampires in the Church?

"But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God has not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, Who died for us." 1 Thessalonians 5:8-9

"Just as we are each concerned about our own physical health, we must be concerned about the health of the body of Christ. The spirit of vampirism in the Church is a spreading cancer that must not be ignored. It must be destroyed!"

- Keith

The Scripture says that we should not be ignorant of satan's devices, "Lest Satan should get an advantage over us." (2 Corinthians 2:11)  In that light, it is our desire to expose a major demonic device that is afflicting many in the church today: vampirism.  One does not have to look far to see that vampires and vampirism have become popular phenomena in modern society.  In the past ten years, there has been a significant increase in the number of prime time television programs and major motion pictures that use vampires as their main theme.  Similarly, many metropolitan police departments and other law enforcement agencies are reporting a staggering rise in vampire cult activity.

Now, it is crucial to realize that the popular portrayal of vampirism, the folklore, and superstitions regarding it are all part of satan's scheme, because these hide the true nature of this very destructive and seductive weapon in his arsenal.  Vampirism truly is one of satan's most divisive tools against the body of Christ.  The idea that a vampire is some colorful little character with fangs and a cape is as wrong as thinking that the Devil runs around in a red suit carrying a pitch-folk. Make no mistake, vampirism is very real.
So, what is a vampire?  The Webster’s dictionary defines a vampire as “an unscrupulous person who preys ruthlessly on others, as a blackmailer or usurer.”  Webster’s also defines vampirism as “the act or practice of preying ruthlessly on other people.”  The Lord Jesus Christ defines it thusly:  “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.”  (John 10:10a)  The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy.  A vampire is simply one kind of thief according to the Lord.
It is also quite important to note the context of the Lord’s remark.  He continued by contrasting the works of the thief, including vampires, with His own, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”  (John 10:10b)  Jesus brings life and that in abundance for His people.  Vampires come to destroy that Abundant Life by stealing time and energy.  No matter how much they take, they are never satisfied.
A vampire is a human parasite; a human leech often times influenced by a demonic accomplice; someone who is focused solely on themselves to the point of depleting or draining others of the resources and life within them to achieve or satisfy their own selfish objectives or cravings.  Another way of describing this is out-of-control selfishness.  A person who has succumbed to the spirit of vampirism would simply be one who is leading a misguided life of tearing down or using others in an attempt to exalt themselves.  We are dealing with wicked spirits seeking to fulfill the devil’s missions: steal, kill, and destroy the person who gives it place in their life and anyone who becomes involved with that person.
Now, while vampirism can involve both human and demonic activity, this is not always the case.  Unclean spirits must look for humans to influence, because that is how satan’s work of killing, stealing and destroying is ultimately accomplished.  He must have a willing host body in order to do his bidding in the natural realm.  However, people can be vampires without any help or prodding from unclean spirits.
Observe also that there is a vast difference between a person who has become overtaken by a spirit of vampirism and someone who genuinely hungers for the things of God.  People who truly hunger for God and are being transformed into the image of Christ, eventually enter the place where they die to their own selfish wants and desires in order to become an asset to those around them.  On the other hand, someone who is operating as a vampire is always on the take.
Consider these verses in Proverbs: “There is a generation that curses their father, and doth not bless their mother. There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness. There is a generation, O how lofty are their eyes! and their eyelids are lifted up. There is a generation, whose teeth are as swords, and their jaw teeth as knives, to devour the poor from off the earth, and the needy from among men. The horseleech hath two daughters, crying, Give, give. There are three things that are never satisfied, yea, four things say not, It is enough: The grave; and the barren womb; the earth that is not filled with water; and the fire that saith not, It is enough. The eye that mocketh at his father, and despises to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.” (Proverbs 30:11-17)
The apostle Paul warns us about this, as well:  “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, truce breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.”  (2 Timothy 1:7)
This passage says that in the last days, these days that we are in, society would succumb to vampirism.  This is coming to pass in our day and the Church is right in the middle of it.  We are in perilous times, and the Church needs to deal with that kind of person by applying discipline as commanded by Jesus.  “Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.”  (Matthew 18:15-17)
For example, in the days of the Apostles, Paul was told that the Church at Corinth would not discipline a member who was living openly with his father’s wife (1 Corinthians 5).  In 1st Corinthians, Paul wrote that the Church was not to fellowship with the unrepentant brother, but they were to put him out of the Church, delivering him over to satan for the destruction of the flesh that his soul might be delivered.  He said, “Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened.”  (1 Corinthians 2:6-7)  The Church had to put the man out or the whole Church would be poisoned and the man’s soul would not be delivered.  They obeyed.  This worked and the man repented.  The problem now for this poor fellow was that the Church wouldn’t accept him back!
So, Paul wrote, "Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many. So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow. Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him.” (2 Corinthians 2:6)  And he concluded with, “To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ; Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.”  (2 Corinthians 2:10-11)
Note that in the case of those who do not repent of the wrong behavior, the Church is commanded by the Lord to turn our backs on them.  This is a difficult thing to understand, and even more difficult to do.  Failure to properly apply Biblical discipline has crippled the Church.  When Pastors don’t do it, they are drained dry by the parasites in the Church.  And, when you and I don’t do it, we are drained dry as well.  Most importantly, the sin that is allowed to remain in the camp will fester and spread to others in the Church:  the leaven will inevitably leaven the whole lump.
The objection can be raised that we’re supposed to love everybody, and we’re not supposed to judge anyone.  However, true love is not blind to sin.  True love, God’s love, covers the sin by dealing with the sin at the Mercy Seat.  It is not love to ignore sin; we must deal with sin according to the Lord’s commandments.  We have a responsibility as the Scripture plainly puts it that, if we see our brother taken in a fault, to go to that one and restore him in a spirit of meekness.  This is true love!  The scripture clearly states that we must first die to our own selfish desires before we can be effectively used of God to help reach and meet the needs of others.
Now we have reached the very heart of the matter.  It is impossible to correctly discipline another until we have disciplined ourselves by first submitting to the Lord’s discipline.  As Jesus said, “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but consider not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.”  (Matthew 7:1-5)
Jesus said do not judge, but he did not say to not deal with the mote in your brother’s eye.  Elsewhere, the Lord commands us to, “Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.”  (John 7:24)  By combining this verse with the passage from Matthew, we can see that we must deal with the beam in our own eyes so that we can be able to help our brother with the mote in his.  If we attempt to correct our brother for the mote in his eye without first having dealt with our own hearts, then we are hypocrites.
It is sin to deal improperly with a brother who is in sin.  It is also sin to do nothing about it.  When a brother or a sister in the church sees an unclean spirit working through the life of a fellow church member, then the matter should be brought to the attention of the leadership of the Church.  The worst thing that can be done is to “share” the information with another member of the Church under the guise of a “prayer request”.  This is called gossip and backbiting in the Scripture.
This is not about fault finding, nit-picking, and idle, hurtful talk.  If you engage in that kind of behavior, you’re playing right into satan’s hands!  Do not underestimate the importance of this. It is a life and death matter!  The Church is a body, a living body: the body of Christ.  Just as each of us is concerned about our own physical health, we must be concerned about the health of the body of Christ.  The spirit of vampirism in the Church is a spreading cancer that must not be ignored.  It must be destroyed!
We are convinced that we are in the last days and it is time now more than ever for each of us to examine our own hearts and motives to make doubly sure that we are not giving place to the self-seeking spirit of vampirism to work through our lives to bring harm to others.  We pray that this message would serve as a spiritual mirror to help you see, deal with, and evict any unclean spirits that you may have given place to in your life.  It must be our life’s goal to be an asset and not a deficit to everyone we come in contact with.
We can’t stress enough the importance of getting understanding where this topic is concerned.  Also, please understand that it is our hearts’ deepest desire to expose the deadly work that this spirit has been inflicting on the Church, and that this is not, in any way, an attempt to promote animosity towards those among us who may be overtaken by this spirit of vampirism.  “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”  (Ephesians 6:12)
1 Thessalonians 5:4-10 says, “But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.”  I pray that you will make it your goal to always be an asset and a giver of life to all you come in contact with each day.  The apostle Paul said, “I have showed you all things, how that so laboring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.”  (Acts 20:35)
By the way, you must realize that you are either part of the solution, or part of the problem.  If you stand in front of the mirror of this teaching and can see your yourself in it, you are well on your way to becoming an asset to the body of Christ.  However, if you stand in front of the mirror of this teaching and cannot see yourself, we suggest that you read it repeatedly until you can!  In either case, you will recognize the truth concerning this, which is far better than being blind to it.

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Find this message, along with 11 others, in Keith's book, "XII Smooth Stones" available on our website TowardTheMark.com.

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1 comment :

Anonymous said...

So true! This helps me understand some things much better! Pastors in churches need to preach your enormously important message that: "vampirism can involve both human and demonic activity, but is not always the case. Unclean spirits must look for humans to influence, because that is how satan’s work of killing, stealing and destroying is ultimately accomplished. He must have a willing host body in order to do his bidding in the natural realm. However, people can be vampires without any help or prodding from unclean spirits." I'm sharing this with everyone I know!!