angels&demons, heaven, writing

“The Heavenlies” – A Peretti Pastiche (Part 2 of 2)


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Three

It was the end of his University life and Paul had decided that it didn’t matter if he got drunk tonight. He stood at the bar again waiting for more drink. Apathy, Deceit and Desire gripped hold of him like toxic leeches, writhing in pleasure as they controlled his mind. Their yellow, bulbous eyes flitted about continually, knowing that at any moment legions of angels could obliterate any attempt they could ever make to influence a human life. Kaalk had returned to the City’s demonic stronghold having achieved his goal, but with his swollen pride well and truly dented. He had a score to settle.

It wasn’t long before Pete and Adie had paired off with girls at the other end of the pub, leaving Paul on his own. He looked around and couldn’t see anyone else he knew, so just stayed by his new refuge at the bar. Paul felt his mind getting weary as he opened his throat and threw down the last of the shots. Looking up for a second, he caught the eye of a girl at the end of the bar near to Adie and Pete. He instinctively looked away back to his drink, but he knew she’d been looking at him. She was stunning. Desire shifted position and delved deeper into Paul’s mind. Paul suddenly felt more alert, more nervous again, and he was excited.

By flashing one of his last notes of the night, he motioned to the barman that he wanted serving again. He deliberately glanced back to where the girl had been standing as he exchanged his money for another drink, but was disappointed to find that she had gone. This beer seemed weaker than his earlier pints, like his tongue was numb; it was easier to drink and as he started to knock it back he thought how good it would be to have a girlfriend, not even a girlfriend, just a girl would do.

His thoughts were interrupted by a waft of perfume as he realised that the girl had come over to stand next to him. She was just standing there, leaning against the bar, playing with her long golden hair. As she turned to say goodbye to one of her friends, Paul’s eyes moved across her body as Desire burrowed deeper. Making sure not to slur, he leaned a little closer as she turned back and offered to buy her a drink.

They were soon sitting down holding each other with temporary confidence, not concerned about the public gaze or the fact that they couldn’t remember each other’s name. As the night drew to a close, Paul remained entirely oblivious to the hive of demonic activity that surrounded him. He had forgotten the boy who now lay in hospital and the Bible that sat by his bed. He had forgotten.

Four

Kaalk sat on the dewy moss of the church steeple as the sun struggled through the clouds in the distance. He was motionless except for the rise and fall of his alien frame. Sulphurous breath streamed from his nostrils as he focused on the house, averting his gaze only in occasional reproach of the demonic minions that sat restlessly behind him. Guilt crouched subserviently next to Kaalk. He knew this was his chance to impress his master.

Aramouth and Guldin were standing once again as mighty warriors. Singing with voices like the sound of many waters they were spearheading the Lord’s army that was rapidly congregating in the heavenly places. They proudly looked across the horizon to see hundreds of thousands of angels covering each other in prayer as they prepared for battle.

Paul stirred groggily in his bed as the physical hangover began to gnaw at his consciousness. He opened his eyes to the world allowing the gradual trickle of fragmented memories to tumble through his damaged mind. Kaalk’s huge membranous wings unfurled as Paul reached for the light and the window became lit. A leathery canopy now surrounded the fiend as he waited for the moment to climb the air, glancing furtively around for any angelic intervention. Kaalk was nervous because this was important.

As though in perfect synchronisation, pairs of orange and green reptilian eyes emerged from the trees ahead and from the cars beneath Kallk  – several more from within the bushes next to Paul’s window. They lit the area like flashing hazard lights from the scene of an accident. Kaalk was tense but he smirked with anticipation. The stench of acid rose from the sulfuric climate intensifying from his flaring nostrils as the demonic fellowship behind him also stood eagerly to attention.

Then came Kaalk’s call like the petrified screaming of lost children. In one blurred movement Guilt leapt with frightening agility and dived into the dome of the tree next to Paul’s house, passing into the roof space. He hurtled downwards at unearthly speeds towards Paul’s bedroom. The downcast child of God sat on the edge of his bed bathed in ice-cold perspiration. He felt sick in his stomach, weakly nauseous and giddy. He gagged at the rush of adrenalin with every hazy memory that returned, and, with them, Apathy, Deceit and Desire all moved to accommodate Guilt who entered the room with merciless force.

Paul instantly remembered his opportunity to leave the pub, the chance to go home. With immaculate precision Guilt sharpened his talons on his armoured back and sank them into his victim’s mind. Paul remembered the girl. Guilt withdrew his talons and began to swing back and forth with his barbed sword, hacking Paul’s heart with insatiable pleasure. Paul collapsed on the floor catching his head in his hands, weeping like a child. He was embarrassed by his fear though no-one was in the room with him, and yet, like the faint blowing of the wind he could hear outside, he recognised a still voice longing for him to call out the name of Jesus. Paul understood the voice instantly and with all the faith he had cried out to his Father in heaven.

A single trumpet sounded and the gates of heaven exploded open. Endless thousands of heavenly warriors raced in majestic silence to Paul’s defense as unimaginable fragrances and indescribable lights appeared in the train of radiance behind the heavenly host. With perfect timing, Guldin and Aramouth were fighting by Paul’s side and, like a spear through water, sent every demon sprawling to the floor. Paul lifted his head and remembered a verse from Romans, and then another from Philippians. Guldin stood before Paul like a mighty pillar of the finest gold while Aramouth prowled like a lion, skillfully disarming the injured demons.

Apathy, Deceit and Desire bowed briefly before the angels as they hissed and fled the room. Guilt had already maneuvered like a snake back behind Guldin who spun to see the spirit dig again into Paul’s heart. Once more Kaalk howled outside commanding the remaining demons to do their worst, and they moved together towards the bedroom like a black cloud.

Paul hesitantly got to his feet and sat again on his bed. He looked at his Bible as Guldin threw a massive blow to the back of Guilt’s deformed head. But Guilt braced himself and stuck obstinately to Paul’s heart. Kaalk’s filthy presence now filled the room as Aramouth turned to what appeared to be a different demon, transfigured. Kaalk had grown in stature and now towered above him filling the room with a putrid stench. Aramouth darted from one side of the room to the other to avoid the blur of Kaalk’s claws and fangs, failing to land any blows of his own attack.

But the demon lord hyper-extended his spine and screamed in horror amidst vomiting episodes as an explosion of pure light momentarily blinded him. Outside, the demonic cloud was seconds from entering Paul’s bedroom when it hit an impenetrable wall of heavenly authority. Demons were snatched and sent flailing into the abyss of hell; shattered wings and bodies showered the area like a grotesque spiritual deluge. Kaalk instinctively knew what had happened as he spat on the floor; that his scheme was effectively over and that the Unmentionable’s army had conquered again. But Kaalk remained internally motivated with the prospect of his own glory, with his own triumph over these pathetic spirits that, on their own, were nothing.

The demon clawed at his bleeding eyes and grabbed Aramouth, tossing him aside like a rag doll. He pinned him to the floor with his muscular leg, but reached down too late to see Guilt being decapitated by Guldin and thrown out of the room with unquestionable authority.

Paul picked up his Bible and flicked the pages towards the back. He turned to the book of James and started reading at chapter four. Both angels were instantaneously transformed into figures of incomparable beauty: their faces became ruddy and their eyes burnt with cleansing fire. Guldin looked at Kaalk who now shook uncontrollably with fear as Aramouth snapped the demon’s leg with his mighty arm and stood upright. Without even so much as looking at each other, both angels sprang into glorious action. They circled the principality overhead and with a sovereign act of sword-drawn finality they thundered down through Kaalk’s very being.

Paul had reached verse seven.

Three weeks later Paul talked excitedly with Pete and Adie about his gap-year plans to travel to Africa to help with Christian missionaries there. Paul had seen his friends in the pub as he was passing outside and had decided to go in and join them. After an hour or so of catching up, a couple of beers and a bite to eat later, Paul shook their hands and wished them well for their futures. As Paul left, Pete and Adie talked of how good it was to see him, but couldn’t help but wonder why he hadn’t properly introduced them to his two friends.

The End

© Nick Franks, 2011

All works registered through Copyright House

10 Comments

  • Great writing mate. Peretti has met his match. I wonder if I could open a discussion on this area of spiritual warfare. I’ve been thinking about it a bit recently as a number of friends in Kenya have stories of Christian firends who’ve been approached in the street by someone (ofen a middle aged lady or someone you wouldn’t expect) who maybe asks for the time or directions and then the next thing they know they are halucinating, have handed over all their money to the person and they come to themselves in a different part of town or travelling in the wrong direction. This is attributed to spiritual warfare. My question is this: Is it possible for the children of God, born again believers, to be inadvertently influenced by demonic forces? I know that we are still susceptible to listening to the devil’s lies – as you put it in your story ‘having demonic claws dig into our minds’ – and our sinful nature can easily give the devil a foothold (Eph. 4:27) but what about halucination or sickness or failure that is said to result not from our sinful nature allowing opening the door so to speak but to an unwelcomed outside demonic influence. Inadvertant influence. Is it possible for a child of God to be subject to demons in that way? My gut feeling is No – we are completely spiritually secure in Christ. As Paul encourages the Ephesian ex-occultists in their occultic context, ‘You have every spiritual blessing’, ‘You are seated with Christ above every principality and power’. I’m also aware that stage hypnotists and conmen and mimic a lot of ‘spiritual’ phenomena. So I’m inclined to be suspicious of talk of ‘inadvertant demonic contamination’ of believers – perhaps through a relative who practices black magic or a childhood experience of a seance. But then I know a lot of wierd stuff happens and we are still very frail and human. Teach me brothers!

    • My understanding, through my experience at prayer ministry training and deliverance training, is that Christians can’t be possessed but can be spiritually oppressed by deminonic forces that gain a foothold or legal right through generational curses, hexes, spells as well as word curses. Eph 4: 26-27 is clear in stipulating that unforgiveness allows demonic spirits a foothold or legal right in a believer’s life. This could explain why one would say or do something s/he would never do.

      The demonic realm is perhaps a more hierarchical order than that of the military and demonic spirits go about in 8’s (one + 7 more evil ones) who are only looking for places of rest in human bodies. These spirits may not possess a Christian but can control a certain part of his / her life.

      The principle is the same as that of a burglar who enters into to steal and to destroy so make sure there are no open windows or cracks. Fear, sexual sin and occult involvement are big doors to demonic oppression that can even become the causes of afflictions and all sorts of afflictions.

      To read more about how to identify and repudiate legal rights handed over to demonic forces, take a look at this:

      http://www.cwgministries.org/books/Prayers-That-Heal-The-Heart/SemGuide.pdf

      Where your mention of your friends in Africa hallucinating are concerned, this can be resolved by just praying a simple prayer of protection before any form of ministry or stepping out of the house that specifically includes…’breaking and declaring null and void any curses, hexes or spells sent against us in Jesus’ name and breaking the assignments of spirits sent against us and sending them to the place that Jesus has prepared for them’.

  • Thanks, mate!

    Yeah, I think this comes back to the question, perhaps, of whether or not Christians can be possessed by a demon or just oppressed by them in experience.

    I’ve heard some solid teaching on this over the years and praise God that there is an infinite difference between Scriptural facts and creative writing short stories!

    The interesting part in respect of this is in Saul’s life where he seems able to converse with Samuel after his death. It’s like a script from Star Wars with Samuel our Obi Wan Kenobi hero seemingly ‘summoned’ by the Medium of Endor. It always reminds me of the beginning of Macbeth when I read it!

    The point is, the spiritual world is an unknown quantity to us, generally, because of these random parts of Scripture and because the Bible seems to fall silent in some ways so that there aren’t concrete answers.

    I would definitely agree with you that there are limits (by sheer virtue of Eph.1:13) on the reach of demonic activity. Obviously the Medium of Endor wasn’t raising a demon but I wonder how the evil spirits were involved in that? There’s a darkness hovering over that moment in Saul’s life but I’m sure Samuel wasn’t at the behest of demons. Samuel was protected – it was Saul who was vulnerable.

    The reports sound similar, in some way, to John’s comments above. I wonder how demonic activity differs from continent to continent. I know that some Cities in England have very different ‘feels’ – like Bradford. A very oppressive City.

    To summarise, for fear of waffle….I don’t think that demons can possess a Christian. I don’t think they can cause them to jump into fires or water (for example) but I do think their oppression works by suggestion – by lies and deceits.

    Strongholds are the ultimate activity in a child of God’s life?

    “Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil” (Eph.4:26-27)

    The Bible should teach us what these ‘opportunities’ are.

    Pax

    • If my interpretation is correct, the spirit which spoke through the witch of Endor was not the spirit of Samuel but a ‘familiar spirit’ who impersonated Samuel. And there are plenty around, often, if one goes to a medium and says s/he wants a word from a dead relative, they do get pretty accurate words of knowledge through the medium eg.’he was there when X happened to you (after the person’s death) and was so proud of you / wants you to know this or that’. It’s a famiiar spirit, they are lieutenants of the devil sent to deceive people.

      Again, in 2001, I was posted to a different battalion (not a training school), the CSM of Foxtrot Coy was a 1st WO in his 50’s who was an ancestor worshipper and a medium who could go into a trance. Whilst he was a fatherly figure he was far from one who would lead by example and I personally loathed him for the way he’d yell and how he treated some of my boys with disparity where their weeked duties were concerned but young 2LTs who f*** the older, more experienced warrant officers for legitimate reasons often live to regret it as the latter are very adept at setting up subaltern officers (2LT to CPT) to face the wrath of the CO or regiment/battalion commander.

      I had one of my sergeants and privates on duty one night shortly after the events of 9/11 (i think it was 2/3 weeks after, military security was enhanced). When they were out on patrol, they had seen the ghost of a civilian painter who had died in a freak accident. He was seen sitting on the parapet he had fallen off only a few months ago. I knew they were not lying as I remember seeing the CSM and battalion RSM (regimental SM) sacrifice food and incense on a regular basis before they’d head home in the evenings after the accident. Sometimes, you’d see him talking to himself but I was quite sure that that the old man was speaking to an invisible spirit.

      There was also once when a cobra was seen outside the barracks, he was adamant that he’d look after the situation and insisted to the OC who was a Buddhist that it not be shot. He went up to it and for 20mins was in a trance before it slithered away. I personally wanted it dead as it could pose a threat to our men but it was best not to argue.

      Was that the spirit of the person who died or a familair spirit impersonating the dead man?

      After what happened, the CSM and my two soldiers, up until their discharge, found themselves in servitude to the worship of that spirit, whether it was a familiar spirit or the spirit of the dead man. They were offering sacrifices of food and incense out of fear; isnt this what satan and his demons covet – the worship of mortals. my men had exposed themselves to a spirit of fear and i wish i had told them what they could’ve done.

  • Hi Everyone.

    This was in my inbox this morning and thought it would be an interesting addition to our discussion.

    Please feel free to comment and contribute to the conversation 🙂

    Nick

    ___________________________________________________________________

    FICM Daily Devotional for Mon 17th Oct
    THE OLDEST LIE OF SATAN

    They sacrificed to demons who were not God, to gods whom they have not known, new gods who came lately, whom your fathers did not dread. You neglected the Rock who begot you, and forgot the God who gave you birth (Deuteronomy 32:17,18)

    The New Age Movement cloaks the occult in the description of New Age enlightenment: “You don’t need God; you are God. You don’t need to repent of your sins and depend on God to save you. Sin isn’t a problem; you just need to turn off your mind and tune in to the great cosmic oneness through harmonic convergence.” The New Age pitch is the oldest lie of Satan: “You will be like God” (Genesis 3:5).

    This thirst for knowledge and power has lured a fallen humanity to seek guidance from mediums and spiritists, and from such occultic practices as fortune telling, tarot cards, palm-reading, Ouija boards, astrology, magic charming and automatic writing. People all around us are ignoring the God who loves them and wants to guide their lives and are instead seeking light and peace in the kingdom of darkness. Peace can only be found in the Prince of Peace, not in the prince of darkness.

    Don’t be carried away by the prospect of knowledge and power that is luring so many people in our culture today away from God. People such as the devotees of Simon in Acts 8:9, 10, will continue to be astonished by those who practice New Age sorcery. Others, such as the customers of the demon-possessed slave girl in Acts 16:16-18, will contribute to the profit of those who exercise a spirit of divination. As in these examples from the early church, those who seek knowledge and power from the dark side will greatly interfere with the work of God, deceiving many by the counterfeit forces they employ. Other people will thirst after power to such an extent that they will sacrifice to the “goat demons” (Leviticus 17:7) and even sacrifice their own children to demons (Psalm 106:36-38).

    Let the words of Deuteronomy 32:17,18, sober us to the reality that even believers are vulnerable to being lured away from the knowledge and power of God by our enemy.

    Lord, I refuse to participate with the powers of darkness. You are my life and the light of my world.

    Neil Anderson

    • Nick and John – thanks for all of your really helpful contributions. I guess what we’re saying is that spiritual forces are very real, that a child of God cannot be actually possessed by a demon (or demons) but that sin, doubt and occultic activity can open the door and give the devil and his hoards a foothold of influence in your thinking and living. And the answer to this is simply to pray,to pick up the sword of the Word and to stand your ground in the gospel of Christ crucified and exalted. What I’m still not sure on is the possibility of influence from generational or external curses – i.e. where the door has not been opened from the inside by anger or fear or a willingness to get into the occult. I don’t see a lot of basis for that sort of thing in Scripture. But I’m yet to read the manual you kindly gave the link to John – so I reserve judgment. Thanks for your wisdom guys.

    • Yup.

      I could easily write a book of the erstwhile spiritual encounters (good and bad) that experienced first hand by myself as well as those witnessed by my subordinates, superiors and colleagues over the 30 mths i was in the army. The warrant officers, coming from the most experienced corps, will always be the ones who’ll have the most to say about the supernatural irrespective of their religion.

      There were a few times when my life was in danger and I knew for certain that without angelic intervention I wouldn’t have lived.

      The most recent being in the summer of 2006 when I was back in Christchurch, NZ for a visit. I was driving a rented Toyota Yaris along a single-carriage way in the countryside I was familair with. I was rushing to drop off something at the hospital for a friend I was staying with. The camber and quality of this particular road was quite bad and there’re several crosses on this road, indicating that many had met with their deaths. I was doing about 100km/h and all of a sudden I realized that I was approaching a bend up ahead and that I had already passed the warning sign to slow down to 25km/h and that there was a bend ahead. I jammed on the brakes just as I entered the bend. The car wasn’t equipped with ABS and it started spinning violently. It happened so quickly I thought I’d die. The car was so close to the lamposts and felt as though it’d overturn any moment as the camber was sloping downwards. As it was spinning I called out for Jesus to save me and the car eventually stopped skidding and though shaken I felt at peace and was able to just drive off. If there’d been a car coming in the opposite direction, there would’ve been carnage. I still can’t believe that I got back my NZ$1500 deposit on that car upon its return. Don’t drive small cars!

      When I was an infantry trainee at bootcamp, there was one night when I felt uneasy and sleepless. I could sense something heavy in the air and it just wasn’t normal. I didn’t sleep a wink although my whole body was aching and tired from the training. The next morning, one of the other guys in the section with a bed in the middle of the room opposite mine told everyone that he was restless as he saw a large dark figure move through the doors shortly after lights out. It was moving around our bunk. He said it hovered around everyone’s bed in the section, except mine that was in the corner by the window. It eventually remained next to the left of my buddy’s bed, the soldier next to me, but not mine. If he wasn’t lying to us, my guardian angel had probably protected me but I didn’t see anything.

  • Yes! The Word and prayer.

    Generational factors? Paul Scanlon would say generational/genetic dispositions can make generational ‘choices’ a reason why there appears to be repeated problems. I don’t know….the Bible will surely deal with that because it deals with absolutely everything!

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