Posts Tagged ‘Berit Kjos’

NEW BOOKLET: A Christian Parent’s Guide to POKÉMON

LTRP Note: While this new booklet by Lois Putnam might not be of interest to everyone of our readers, we believe it is a vitally important tool for parents, grandparents, and teens who are trying to figure out whether Pokémon or Pokémon GO is OK or not from a spiritual standpoint.

NEW BOOKLET: A Christian Parent’s Guide to POKÉMON by Lois Putnam is our newest Lighthouse Trails Booklet Tract.  The Booklet is 18 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklets are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use. Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of A Christian Parent’s Guide to POKÉMON, click here. 

bkt-lp-pok-sA Christian Parent’s Guide to POKÉMON

By Lois Putnam

For Pokémon Go gamers, their “Gotta Mantra” is “Gotta Catch ‘Em All!”—Pokémon that is. However, a Christian’s motto must be: “Gotta Know, Gotta Learn, Gotta Discern, Gotta Go!” And just what it is that we as born again believers gotta know, gotta learn, gotta discern, and gotta go will be the theme of this booklet.

It was on July 6, 2016, via one’s smartphone, that players could download a free app and get set up to head outdoors to begin to catch Pokémon Pocket Monsters. Soon befuddled folks were bumping into gamers congregating at designated PokeStops be it at a church, a parking lot, a body of water, a library, a museum, a park, or the mall to name a few. Since this began, the Pokémon Go Mania has taken the country, and a number of other countries, by storm.

TV hosts, You Tube video makers, newspaper reporters, and online authors alike have scrambled to describe exactly how these frenzied gamers were zipping Pokémon balls on their phones to catch Pokémon seemingly popping up all over the place. Meantime, all kinds of safety issues were cropping up–kids in the middle of streets, folks walking into objects, a pair walking off a cliff, and even unsavory characters luring kids into unsafe places. All of this madness was taking place over one hundred and fifty-one little characters of which some seemed to be cute and clever, while others really are violent, ugly, and frightening. So with this in mind, what is it that we gotta know?

Gotta Know

At the outset, we gotta know some basic Pokémon info—such as the game of Pokémon, designed by Satoshi Tajiri in the 1990s, is managed by the Pokémon Company which, according to Wikipedia, is a Japanese consortium between Nintendo, Game Freak, and Creatures. Tajiri designed these Pokémon characters so gamers known as “Pokémon Trainers could catch and train to battle each other for sport.”

Officially introduced in 1996, Pokémon celebrated its twentieth anniversary in 2016. The new phenomenon Pokémon GO is an augmented reality game currently using the original Generation I Pokémon beginning with Bulbasaur to Mew. However, it’s important to know that now there are 722 Pokémon figures, which means in the last twenty years 571 more have been designed influencing youth and adults via video games, trading card games, comic books, TV shows, movies, and toys.1 Pokémon website, Pokémon.com, is filled with info you gotta know in order to be able to interact with Pokémon Goers! It includes a Pokedex, TV Programs, Trading Card Games, Video Games, A Shop, Attend Events, Pokémon GO and more! It even has a Trading Card Game Tutorial where one can learn to play the card game. Two sections: “The Pokedex,” and “Pokémon GO” are explained further below.2

The Pokedex

If you visit the Pokémon site, you can get to know individual Pokémon—their pictures, statistics, types, strengths/weaknesses, evolution, T.V. episodes, and cards. Under Pokedex, one example of a Pokémon is Haunter. The description of him states:

Haunter is a dangerous Pokémon. If one beckons you while floating in darkness, you must never approach it. This Pokémon will try to lick you with its tongue and steal your life away.3

You will also learn that this gas ghost can “levitate.” Haunter’s card moves include tongue spring, hidden poison, psyshot, sleep poison, haunt, dream eater, Gothic fear, and hoodwink to name some. How gruesome! No doubt this Pokémon has given kids horrific nightmares!

Pokémon Go

On the Pokémon website, you can learn all about Pokémon Go. There are sections on “Pokémon Go Plus,” “Explore Pokémon,” “Teams and Gyms,” and “In App Purchases” where you can find out more game details. “Explore Pokémon” gives blow by blow info about how the game is played including safety, catching a Pokémon, completing one’s Pokedex, the traits of Pokémon, Pokémon evolution, and Pokémon eggs. Out of all this, one has “gotta know” that the goal of this game is: “Gotta Catch ‘Em All”—yes, almost all of the original 151 from the Kanto Region.

Gotta Learn

The Pokémon (Gotta Catch ‘Em All)—Deluxe Essential Handbook: The Need-to-Know Stats and Facts on Over 700 Pokémon is a useful tool to help grandparents, parents, family, and friends learn much more about Pokémon.

Published by Scholastic in 2015, this information-packed book with its glitzy golden title lettering and its shiny Pokémon pics begs one to open its cover.

But, before one opens the book, carefully look at the deceptive Pokémon ball-like pics on the cover. When you do, you’ll note most of the pics are happy and smiley, making the Pokémon appear as if they are just a bunch of cuddly stuffed animals. However, when you open the book, you’ll realize how alluring and deceptive the cover art is, for the Pokémon are anything but cuddly; rather they are often hideous and evil looking.

Title Page: The title page, done in Pokémon logo colors of deep blue, golden yellow, and white, has the Pokémon mantra “Gotta Catch ‘Em All” below the Pokémon logo. Then it once again restates the title, and lists the publisher Scholastic Inc.

Scholastic Books—the book club used by teachers all over the USA!

Welcome Page: In the Welcome Pages of the book, there is a two-page spread highlighting the red page on the left with the rainbow-horned fairy Xerneas sprinting onto the page, while on the right on the blue page there’s: Welcome to the World of Pokémon.” Below the welcome is listed the six Pokémon regions—Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, Sinnoh, Unova, and Kalos—each full of fascinating Pokémon.

This book also lists the Pokémon picture, type, species, height, and weight, which “can make all the difference in Gym battles, in the wild, and anywhere else you might meet Pokémon.”4 Besides, this deluxe handbook, it is said, will enable “Trainers” to master any Pokémon challenge.

How To Use This Book: This two-page section goes into detail about each Pokémon’s name, pronunciation, height and weight, description, evolution, mega evolution, type, and region. It is such info that one has “gotta know and learn” to equip oneself to answer anyone questioning whether this is “just an innocent game.” Along with Scripture, it is knowledge that one can use when a “Deuteronomy Moment” comes. For as Deuteronomy 6:6,7 reads:

And these words which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

Guide to Pokémon Types: The next pages explain the eighteen Pokémon types: fire, grass, water, normal, electric, bug, ghost, flying, fighting, psychic, steel, rock, ground, ice, poison, dark, dragon, and fairy. This ends the seven pages of explanatory notes, and begins the ABC pages which begin on page eight with “Abomasnow” to page four hundred and thirty-two which finishes with “Zygarde.” In between are seven hundred more Pokémon to scrutinize.

To Conclude: I would highly recommend purchasing this book as you can back up your stories and words with the Pokémon pictures and info thus adding weight to your warnings.

Gotta Notice the Names

Many Pokémon names* say “Watch out!”: Names such Abra-Psi Pokémon, Absol-Disaster Pokémon, Alakazam-Psi Pokémon, Arbok-Cobra Pokémon, Arceus-Alpha Pokémon, Beheeyem-Cerebral Pokémon, Carvanha-Savage Pokémon, Chandelure- Luring Pokémon, Cofagrigus-Coffin Pokémon, Darkrai-Pitch Black Pokémon, Darumaka-Zen-Charm Pokémon, Dialga-Temporal Pokémon, Dragonair-Dragon Pokémon, Drapion-Ogre Scorpion Pokémon,  Eevee-Evolution Pokémon, Delphox-Fox Pokémon, Flylon-Mystic Pokémon, Gengar-Shadow Pokémon, Giratina-Renegade Pokémon, Gothitelle-Astral Body Pokémon, Gothorita-Manipulate Pokémon, Gourgeist-Pumpkin Pokémon, Gyarados-Atrocious Pokémon, Houndoom-Dark Pokémon, Hypno-Hypnosis Pokémon, Jynx-Human Shape Pokémon, Kirlia-Emotion Pokémon, Krookodile-Intimidation Pokémon, Lampent-Lamp Pokémon, Latias-Eon Pokémon , Lucario-Aura Pokémon, Manectric-Discharge Pokémon, Mawile-Deceiver Pokémon, Medicham- Meditate Pokémon, Mew-New Species Pokémon, Mewtwo-Genetic Pokémon, Mismagius- Magical Pokémon, Munna-Dream Eater Pokémon, Ninetales-Fox Pokémon, Riolu-Emanation Pokémon, Sigilyph-Avianoid Pokémon, Spiritomb-Forbidden Pokémon, Thunderdurus-Bolt Strike Pokémon, Uxie-Knowledge Pokémon, Xatu-Mystic Pokémon ,Yamask-Spirit Pokémon, Yvetal-Destruction Pokémon. These are but a few of many to watch out for!

Delphox, the Fire-Psychic Pokémon, is one name to notice! Its name has two parts which is a combo of the “Oracle of Delphi” and “fox.” However, even before I found that info, I used Thesaurus.com to find synonyms for psychic, occult, witch etc. Under occult, I noticed “Delphian,” and “Delphic.” I wondered if any Pokémon had a name similar to this, and sure enough there was the mystical Delphox. Looking up “Delphox” on Pokémon.wikia.com, I found this was a fox with the elements of a witch or mage. My Pokémon handbook further said it held a flaming branch in its hand upon which it focused its eyes giving it psychic visions helping it to see into the future. After reading about the “Oracle of Delphi,” Delphox’s story became even clearer. This then can be woven into the Acts 16 story that involves the Oracle at Delphi.5

*Note: Pokémon names were first written in Japanese and later changed into more suitable names for English-speaking gamers. Bulbapedia.com (“The community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia”) is a site that can provide much additional insight by clicking onto the “Origin” section. Bulbapedia.com, by the way, is named after Generation One’s first Pokémon Bulbasaur.6

Gotta Notice the Types, the Moves, and the Illustrations

Altogether, there are eighteen types, and oh, the evil behind these types. Words cannot even describe the things these characters are teaching innocent young children and youth. As I researched the game handbook, a good number of the 700+ Pokémon were “Psychic” with psychic terminology, moves, and stories.

The adjectives describing the game moves would make up one eye-opening glossary with most having absolutely horrendous names. Be sure to peruse “Possible Moves” in the handbook or on a Pokémon info site noting the viciousness of many and evilness of others. This activity alone—the noting of the descriptive names for each move—will surely enable one to discern that this game is literally overflowing with words, concepts, and teachings far removed from the Bible.

Pause and consider the possible moves for Banette, a ghost puppet-like Pokémon that, like a voodoo doll, sticks itself with pins to curse others! Its moves are: knock-off, screech, night shade, curse, spite, will-o-wisp, shadow sneak, feint attack, hex,* shadow ball, sucker punch, embargo, snatch, and grudge trick. Stop and imagine youngsters seven and up familiarizing themselves with such a character. Bulbapedia says, “Banette is a . . . doll-like Pokémon that is possessed with pure hatred.”

[*A hex is: to practice witchcraft; to put a hex on; and to affect as an evil spell: jinx. Synonyms are: charm, enchant, bewitch, overlook, spell, strike. Related words are: curse, jinx, possess, voodoo, attract, beguile, captivate, mesmerize, spellbind, entice, lure, seduce, tempt. (Merriam-Webster) Deuteronomy 18:10-14 makes it very clear what God thinks of those who use witchcraft or other practices named in this piece. It reads: “There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or observer of times, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all these things are an abomination unto the Lord.”]

Another need-to-notice activity would be to flip through the book or scroll through a site with all of the Pokémon pics and simply notice the ferocious or scary looking parts of each character. Just a few pages into this, anyone with a smidgen of discernment would have to concede that these atrocious characters have no place in the life of a precious young child or teen. For Philippians 4:8 declares, “whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

Gotta Know Pokémon Back Stories

Highlighted here are back stories about various types of Pokémon—stories one can easily recall to share with others who need to become aware of just how deceptive the Pokémon agenda is.

Some Third Eye Pokémon:

Dark: Absol: Disaster Pokémon: George Hutcheon, Bulbapedia contributor, shares that Absol is based on a “Bai Ze,” a creature from both China and Japan who warned good rulers of impending disaster. In Japan, images of the Bai Ze were made into “good luck charms” to ward off monsters and disease. Absol, says Hutcheon, resembles this monster with its dark horn, feline shape, and black oval third eye.*7

Ghost/Poison: Mega Gengar: Shadow Pokémon: Gengar is a “third eye” Pokémon with an oval yellow third eye on its forehead. Its “malicious,” says Bulbapedia, laughing at and delighting in its victim’s terror. It hides in the shadows hoping to attack its prey and enjoys casting curses. How horrible is this powerful mega Pokémon which has evolved from the evil Gengar with his sinister leer and giant teeth. Its “moves” include hypnosis, curses, night shade, sucker punch, dream eater, dark pulse, hex, and nightmare.

Steel/Psychic: Jirachi: Wish Pokémon: Jirachi is another Pokémon which has a hidden third-eye or “true eye” concealed within a seam. Its eye is said to absorb energy to aid in its hibernation. If awakened, it might grant your wish if you write it on one of its tags and sing to it with a pure voice.

The Psychic Third Eye Trading Card: The Trading Card Game has a supporter card labeled “The Psychic Third Eye.”8

[*A third eye is: “A point on the forehead corresponding to one of the chakras in yoga, often depicted as an eye and associated with enlightenment and mystical insight.” (Free Dictionary)]

Aura Pokémon:

Fighting/Steel: Lucario: Aura** Pokémon: Canine-like Lucario (evolved from Aura Pokémon Riolu) raises its four aura appendages to read and manipulate its opponents’ aura. Aura Sphere or “wave bomb” is its very special battle move. Mega Lucario becomes even more ferocious with additional spikes coming from its hands, feet, and shoulders. As its aura heightens, black patches appear on its body. It’s said too that it can activate crystallized Time Flowers by shooting out aura.

Ghost-Dragon: Giratina Original/Altered Forme: Renegade Pokémon: Dragonic, demonic appearing Giratina in either form was banished, the Pokémon handbook states, to another dimension where all is distorted and reversed. Like Lucario, Giratina battles with “Aura Sphere.”

Aura Guardians: In the Pokémon world, Aura Guardians sense aura and control its power.

Aura Capabilities: Bulbapedia lists aura capabilities as being able to read minds/actions of others, sense other auras, view through objects, project aura barriers, transfer aura to others, and activate Time Flowers.

[**An Aura (in Japanese means “wave-guiding”) is: an energy field that is held to emanate from a living being (Merriam-Webster) ]

Meditation Pokémon Trio:

Fighting-Psychic: Meditite: Meditate Pokémon: Meditite’s Japanese name is “Asanan” which comes from “asana,” a name for various yogic poses. It does such intense meditation it nearly starves itself never missing daily Yoga practice. This routine, says the handbook, intensifies its inner strength. Meditite also levitates. Pics of Meditite can be found sitting in a lotus position with each hand fixed in a mudra.

Fighting-Psychic: Medicham and Mega Medicham: Medicham meditates so much it has developed a sixth sense. Its picture shows it doing a yogic asana with its hands held in a mudra position. Some say Medicham resembles a good luck charm doll known as a “Daruma doll.”*

[*A Daruma doll is: a hollow and round Japanese wish doll with no arms or legs modeled after Bodhi-dharma, the founder and first patriarch of Zen. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daruma_doll.]

Hypnotic Dream-Eating Pokémon:

Psychic: Drowzee: Hypnosis Pokémon: Drowzee lurks nearby to draw out dreams. Drowzee, a dream eater tapir-like Baku-based Pokémon, uses moves that include hypnosis, meditate, zen-headbutt, psychic, psybeam, poison gas, psyshock, and future sight plus more.

Psychic: Hypno: Hypnosis Pokémon: Hypno uses a pendulum for putting one into a hypnotic trance. Hypno, too, is able to sense what its victim is dreaming. A movie “Hyno’s Naptime” tells how Hypno’s sleep waves have caused children to disappear and Pokémon to grow sleepy.

Psychic: Munna: Dream Eater Pokémon: If Munna, a Baku inspired blimp-like Pokémon eats a happy dream, it gives off pink mist. Some of Munna’s moves include: lucky chant, hypnosis, nightmare, future sight, dream eater, and telekinesis.

Psychic: Musharna: Drowsing Pokémon: Musharna resembles a tapir-like pink pig with its dream stream coming out of its forehead. Some say Musharna seems like a traditional Japanese incense burner called a “koro” that appears on Buddhist altars.

Baku: M. R. Reese of Green Shinto writes that a Japanese child having a nightmare is told if they wake up to repeat “Baku-san, come eat my dream!” three times. After, the legend says, the Baku will enter the room and eat up the bad dreams. However, this mustn’t be overdone or it will devour their hopes and desires leaving them with an empty life. Kids to this day keep “Baku Talisman” by their bedsides. An online site offers a ring, said to have the Baku spirit in it, that one could wear or hang up for protection.9

Psychic Pokémon:

The Psi Quartet: Abra, Kadabra, Alakazam, and Mega Alakazam: These four “Psi” Pokémon, all of the Psychic type, possess many powers. Abra’s signature move is to “teleport” away. Kadabra uses one spoon to greatly increase its powers. Super intelligent Alakazam has two spoons. Lastly, Mega Alakazam has five spoons over head while seated in a lotus position with each hand fixed in mudra. He, records Bulbapedia, is based on a wizard or sorcerer or a Hindu sadhus–a holy man who is a yogi. A Wikipedia article on “Sadhus” has quite a photo display of many holy men with their prominent third eye markings.10

Ghost/Spirit Pokémon:

Ghost Pokémon: Yamask: Spirit Pokémon: Yamask, a very disturbing Pokémon, has a Japanese name Desumasu which comes from death and mask. It also means “Yama” or Lord of the Dead in Buddhism/Hinduism and “weeping mask” in Chinese. It’s based, too, on the Egyptian Ba holding a death mask. Pokedex entries say its mask makes it cry as it wanders around ancient landmarks. Should one accidentally wear this mask, it can be “possessed.” On a post titled “Pokemanical,” a gamer shares stories of really dark Pokémon especially ghosts as Yamask and Cofagrigus. A picture of some of the worst of the worst Pokémon has a comment that says, “Yet still allowable as kids’ game. Huh!”11

Ghost Pokémon: Cofagrigus: Coffin Pokémon: This coffin Pokémon, who lurks in tombs and ruins, is an Egyptian sarcophagus that eats people and mummifies them! Grave robbers who come too close to its shadowy ebony hands find themselves locked inside Cofagrigus. Its name is a combo of sarcophagus and egregious which means coffin and grim. And grim they are!

Light Pokémon: “A Ghost-Fire Trio”:

Ghost/Fire: Litwick: Candle Pokémon: This small candle has a purple flame that’s powered by “life energy.”To get this energy Litwick, a pretender, seems to light the way through darkness all the while sucking life energy from its victim. A Bulbapedia description says, “Litwick leads people astray and sucks out their life force.” What an apt description of Satan! For 2 Corinthians says, “And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.” And 1 Peter 5:8 adds, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about seeking whom he may devour.”

In Bulpadedia “Origin” section, it says: Litwick’s name is a combo of hitodama or a blue, black, and purple flame associated with ghosts, yokai, and candles.

Ghost/Fire: Lampent: Lamp Pokémon: Lampent, an ominous Pokémon, lurks around hospitals “waiting for someone to die” at which time it absorbs their departing spirit which in turn fuels its flame. However, 2 Corinthians 5:8 says of those who die in the Lord that we are “absent from the body and present with the Lord!” And Hebrews 9:27 reads, “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.”

Ghost/Fire: Chandelure: Luring Pokémon: Third in this spirit sucking trio is Chandelure whose name is like a “sentient” chandelier and lure. Chandelure is based also on hitodama which Wikipedia defines as Japanese meaning “human souls” that are like balls of fire floating in the night—departed souls that have been separated from their bodies. The Deluxe Essential Handbook says, “Chandelure’s spooky fames can burn the spirit right out of someone. If that happens the spirit becomes trapped in this world endlessly wandering.” One of Chandelure’s “moves” in the game is to put a “hex” on someone.

The Kami Trio: Tornadus, Thundurus, and Landorus:

Flying: Tornadus: Legendary Cyclone Pokémon: Tornadus, a kami* of wind, is based on the Shinto god Fujin. Tornadus is a wizard-like Pokémon that is carrying a bag of wind.

Electric/Flying: Legendary Bolt Strike Pokémon: Thundurus, a kami of lightning and thunder, is inspired by one of the most feared of Japanese deities Raijin. It’s said of Raijin that if there’s a storm Japanese children were told to cover their belly buttons for Raijin might eat them. People prayed to Raijin for rain and lightning. A rice field hit by a lightning bolt, it was believed, would be fertile and produce a good harvest.12

Ground/Flying: Landorus: Legendary Abundance Pokémon: Bulbapedia states that Landorus was the master of this “Forces of Nature” kami trio. In the Pokémon universe region called “Unova,” there’s a shrine in honor of the “Great Landorus” named “The Abundant Shrine.” Landorus is based on a third kami—the Kami of Fertility—also named Inari.13

[*A Kami is: In the Shinto religion, kami are spirits/phenomena that are worshipped. According to Wikipedia: “They are elements in nature, animals, creationary forces in the universe, as well as spirits of the revered deceased.” Under “Etymology” Wikipedia notes: “Kami is the Japanese word for a god, deity, divinity, or spirit. It has been used to describe ‘mind,’ ‘God,’ ‘supreme being,’ ‘one of the Shinto deities,’ ‘an effigy,’ ‘a principle,’ and ‘anything that is worshipped.’” For further info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kami. The Bible, however, in Exodus 20:3-5 says, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them: for I the LORD they God am a jealous God.” ]

A Creator “God” Pokémon:

Normal: Arceus: Mythical Alpha Pokémon: Areceus is the god Pokémon of the Pokémon Universe. It’s based on a creator deity with a stance like an Egyptian bull or calf idols particularly Apis. It has an arc on its back, says Bulbapedia, that is used to represent reincarnation in Hinduism.

Arceus is connected to the Shinto gods Kunitokotachi and Amenominakanushi who summoned the first goddess and god Izanami and Izanagi to create Japan with a spear. The reference to its having 1000 arms comes from Buddhism. Arceus, it’s said, created Sinnoh, a Pokémon area, and the three Pokémon Lake Guardians Uxie, Azelf, and Mesprit and the Creation Trio Dialaga, Palkia, and Giratina.

Upon reading its English name, “Alpha Pokémon,” one can’t help but think about the biblical reference in Revelation 1:8 that declares, “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.”

These stories are but the tip of the iceberg as to what terms and concepts are being put into the receptive minds of our kids straight out of Shintoism, Buddhism, the New Age, and other pagan religions. As Matthew 6:33 says,
Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.

And as the prayer the Lord taught us to pray which ends in Matthew 6:13 says:

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever.

Gotta Learn About the Shinto Connection

Shintoism in Pokémon: In a July 18, 2016 article titled “Pokémon Go and Its AR Universe,” Ray Tsuchiyama shows how much Pokémon is connected to Shintoism. Tsuchiyama says the Pokémon Go gamers out on their Pokémon hunts are “almost like a new religion of seekers.” Tsuchiyama says they are “seeing ‘otherworldly’ aural specter/image in the middle of the ‘material world’ of buildings, shower trees, and beaches.”14

Tsuchiyama recalls Satoshi Tajiri, the Pokémon founder, who was into his bug collecting world as a child, and later the anime character Ash with his electrifying Pikachu made to resemble Tajiri. Tsuchiyama says Tajiri’s childhood hobby surely contributed to Pokémon with all its curious critters. Tsuchiyama states:

But there is also the deeper cultural, mythological, and animist religious history of Japan that influenced this global game.15

Tsuchiyama goes on to show how closely Pokémon is tied to Shintoism when he writes:

[T]he Pokémon Shiftry evokes a Japanese goblin that lives in a tree and causes windstorms. Lombre probably has the greatest resemblance to the Kappa, a Japanese water demon. Ninetales is obviously the fox god in Shintoism. A Shinto reference is the creation of the Hoenn region (in the game) by Kyogre and Groudon, two Pokémon characters . . . A Shinto “world flood” myth has been worked in Mewtwo’s character.16

“In the original game,” maintains Tsuchiyama, “Pokémon trainers gather to mourn and present offering for ‘dead’ Pokémon, since without the chanting of the Pokémon ‘souls’ will wander the material world and transform into vengeful spirits–again evoking Shinto beliefs.”17

Tsuchiyama adds, “Pokémon characters clearly resemble Shinto gods that hang out in rivers, rocks, trees, and other places—and following Shinto, when offered food and incense, Pokémon and friends/allies bring players all sorts of rewards, like points (blessings?).”18

Tsuchiyama ends by noting that Pokémon GO isn’t the original “character hunting” mobile app. Tsuchiyama writes, “For years in Japan game firms like Yokai Watch and Monster Hunter have spawned thousands of small groups . . .  All these games are heavily influenced by Shinto Mythology.”19

Gotta Learn About the Yokai Connection

Yokai are: (ghost, phantom, or strange apparitions) a class of supernatural monsters, spirits, and demons in Japanese folklore. They can be anywhere from malevolent to mischievous, or even bring good fortune. Yokai can appear in different ways: as animals, as humans, as inanimate objects, or as shapeless. They have spiritual supernatural powers with obake shapeshifting being one of the most common ones.20

An informative article titled “Who’s That Pokémon? Yokai Edition” by Kristen Dexter starts out:

But some of my favorite Pokémon were inspired by yokai: supernatural monsters, ghosts, and phantoms of Japanese folklore. Says Kristen, “Gotta catch ‘em all, yokai!”21

Dexter lists the Japanese term for a particular yokai and its definition. She then asks: “Who’s that yokai?” After, there’s a large picture of each Pokémon that fits this definition and a further reference to its/their traits. Here’s what the yokai covers: Sazae Oni, turban shell ogres, like Slowbro and Slowking; Sogen Bi, a fireball floating head, like Gastly; Baku dream eaters, like Drowzee, Hypno, Munna, and Musharna; Jinmenju, human tree heads, like Exegguter; Yamauba, old woman turned witch, like Jnyx; Nekomata, Bake split tail cats, like Esperson; Nukekubi, cursed headless woman or girl, like Misdreavus; Kamitachi, ambusher attacker weasels, like Sneasel and Weavile; Futakushi Onna, two mouthed cursed woman, like Mawile; Tsukimogami, spirit inhabited inanimate objects, like Banette; Hitodama, graveyard colored light, like Litwick; Kodama, ball of light tree spirits, like Celebi, Phantump, and Trevenant; Chochin Obake, paper lantern inhabiters, like Dusclops and Dusknoir; Yuki Onna, evil woman freezer of travelers, like Froslass; and Nurarihyon, old man yokai leader, like Jellicent.22

Gotta Read Up on Church Reactions to PokÉmon GO

One last thing to look into and become aware of is the number of churches that have been designated Pokémon Go Pokestops and Gyms. Churches are crowing about how unbelievably wonderful it is that they have been named stopping places for Pokémon Go players to pick up items to help catch those hidden Pocket Monsters. Now, is it because most churches see it as a reason to share the Gospel with those that happen by, or is it because they think the game is clever and yes even fun and they get to share things like water, or a place to recharge smartphones? Unfortunately, it is the latter in many instances.

I read where an Episcopal church attendee declared if you’re going to do “evangelism,” you might as well have fun doing it. Another “millennial evangelical” opined all that old Pokémon is of the devil drivel, why that’s a thing of the past. He said that “there are 721 Pokémon to date, with more coming this fall, and not a single one of them has a devilish or Satanic sort of name or makeup.”23 How I’d challenge this uninformed millennial, or anyone else, regardless of age, to do the research using sources quoted in this booklet that show how infiltrated Pokémon is with every sort of evil idea that could be thought up. In fact, a verse that well describes Pokémon is Genesis 6:5 that reads:

And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of his heart was only evil continually.

And as it was in the days of Noah, so it is today!

Gotta Discern, Gotta Go

In summary, once one grasps that Pokémon is inundated with deceptive teachings and occultic references, one must determine to research Pokémon lore and backstories to more fully discern the agenda, the culture, and the religion from which this game has arisen. The question then becomes: “What must one do with this information? Just as Berit Kjos, in her excellent 1999 article: “The Dangers of Role-Playing Games-How Pokémon and Magic Cards Affect the Minds,” listed ideas on how to teach one’s children or grandchildren on ways to resist occult entertainment, I too would urge parents, grandparents, and friends to be ready as Deuteronomy Moments arise; and during devotional times, talk to your children or grandchildren on a regular basis about key words and ideas presented in Pokémon and Pokémon Go and how they contrast with Scripture.

Point out that Proverbs describes the simple—the naive ones—as those who are open to anything that comes down the pike as contrasted to the wise—the knowledgeable ones—those who cry out and search for wisdom as to which paths to take. And as Solomon said in Proverbs 4:10-15:

Hear O my son, and receive my sayings; and the years of thy life shall be many. I have taught in the way of wisdom; I have led thee in the right paths. When thou goest thy steps shall not be straitened; and when thou runnest, thou shalt not stumble. Take fast hold of instruction; let her not go; keep her; for she is thy life. Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the path of evil men. Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away.
What opportunities await informed Christians, who with both Scripture and pertinent Pokémon information, can clearly point out how deceptive and evil these alluring Pokémon are. Yes, we gotta be ready to go, for not only must we warn about Pokémon Go, but as Mark 16:15, a Bible go verse, reads, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”

Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil. (Proverbs 4:26, 27)
In this Pokémon Go world, how apt are these verses.

To order copies of A Christian Parent’s Guide to POKÉMON, click here. 

ENDNOTES
1. For more “gotta know” info, read “Pokémon” from Wikipedia article: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pok%C3%A9mon.
2. http://www.pokemon.com/us.
3. https://pokemon.gameinfo.io/en/pokemon/93-haunter.
4. The Pokémon (Gotta Catch ‘Em All)—Deluxe Essential Handbook: The Need-to-Know Stats and Facts on Over 700 Pokémon (Scholastic, 2015).
5. See http://biblehub.com/commentaries/acts/16-16.htm. Related topics include: occult, Delphic, witch, wizard, mage, focus, psychic, psychic visions, oracle, Oracle at Delphi, Apollo, spirit of divination, and Acts 16. https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oracle_of_Delphi.
6. “The community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia”: http://www.bulbagarden.net.
7. George Hutcheon, “On the Origin of Species: Absol” (September 23, 2013, http://bulbanews.bulbagarden.net/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species:_Absol).
8. http://www.pojo.com/cotd/2016/Feb/23.shtml.
9. M.D. Reese, “Baku, the Legend of the Dream Eater” (December 1, 2014, http://www.greenshinto.com/wp/2014/12/16/baku-the-dream-eater).
10. For more, read “Abra, Kadabra, and Alakazam” at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abra,_Kadabra,_and_Alakazam.
11. “Pokemanical” (September 4, 2011, http://pokemaniacal.tumblr.com/post/17760681303/yamask-and-cofagrigus).
12. http://muza-chan.net/japan/index.php/blog/japanese-traditions-fujin-god-wind http://muza-chan.net/japan/index.php/blog/japanese-traditions-raijin-thunder-god.
13. http://pokemon.neoseeker.com/wiki/Kami_Trio.
14. Ray Tsuchiyama, “Pokémon Go and Its AR Universe” (July 18, 2016, http://web.archive.org/web/20160719142124/http://www.mauinews.com/page/blogs.detail/display/5619/Pokemon-Go-and-Its-AR-Universe.html).
15. Ibid.
16. Ibid.
17. Ibid.
18. Ibid.
19. Ibid.
20. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Y%C5%8Dkai.
22. Kristen Dexter, “Who’s That Pokémon? Yōkai Edition!” (October 31, 2014, https://www.tofugu.com/japan/pokemon-yokai).
23. Ibid.
24. Chris Martin (works at LifeWay Christian Resources), “Is Pokémon Satanic?” (Millennial Evangelical, July 15, 2015, http://www.millennialevangelical.com/is-pokemon-satanic).

To order copies of A Christian Parent’s Guide to POKÉMON, click here. 

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How POKEMON and Magic Cards Affect the Minds and Values of Children (and a Warning About Pokemon Go)

pokemon-goLTRP Note: With the recent Pokemon Go craze, we thought this article from 1999 by Berit Kjos about Pokemon was very timely and needed. For those who aren’t sure if Pokemon Go is OK or not, do a search on the Internet to read some of the scary stories happening to people. We linked to one of them below Berit’s article.

By Berit Kjos
Who are the strange little creatures from Japan that have suddenly become global super-stars? Most kids know the answer well: They are called Pokemon (short for POCKEt MONster and pronounced Poh-keh-mon), and they have stirred up some mixed reactions.

“We just sent a letter home today saying Pokemon cards are no longer allowed on campus,” said Paula Williams, a second-grade teacher in Danville, California. “The kids know they’re supposed to be put away when they come in from recess, but they’re often in the middle of a trade, so they don’t come in on time. In the more extreme cases, the older kids are getting little kids to trade away valuable cards . . . . It drives a teacher crazy.”1

It concerns parents even more. “Recently, my children were given a set of Pokemon cards,” said DiAnna Brannan, a Seattle mom. “They are very popular with the children at our church and elsewhere. I was instantly suspicious but couldn’t discern the problem. We have since been told that they are stepping stones to the ‘Magic cards’ that have been popular for the last few years, which we do not allow.”

She is right. For instance, children exploring some of the most popular Pokemon websites 2 will find links to a selection of occult games. At the site for the Wizards of the Coast (makers of the Pokemon and Magic cards), a click on an ad for “Magic the Gathering” brings Pokemon fans to promotions such as this:

“A global games phenomenon, Magic: The Gathering is to the 1990s what Dungeons and Dragons was to the 1980s, but with the added dimension of collectibility. Here is the official reference to the biggest new teen/young adult fantasy game of the decade, complete with full-color reproductions of every existing Magic card.”

THE POKEMON MESSAGE. The above websites gives us glimpse of the mysterious little creatures called Pokemon. Ponder the suggestions in this greeting:

“Welcome to the world of Pokemon, a special place where people just like you train to become the number-one Pokemon Master in the World!”

“But what is a Pokemon, you ask. ‘Pokemon are incredible creatures that share the world with humans,’ says Professor Oak, the leading authority on these monster. ‘There are currently 150 documented species of Pokemon. . . . Each Pokemon has its own special fighting abilities. . . . Some grow, or evolve, into even more powerful creatures.. . . Carry your pokemon with you, and you’re ready for anything! You’ve got the power in your hands, so use it!'” 3

What if children try to follow this advice? What if they carry their favorite monsters like magical charms or fetishes in their pockets, trusting them to bring power in times of need?

Many do. It makes sense to those who watch the television show. In a recent episode, Ash, the boy hero, had just captured his fifth little Pokemon. But that wasn’t good enough, said his mentor. He must catch lots more if he wants to be a Pokemon master. And the more he catches and trains, the more power he will have for future battles.

So Ash sets out again in search for more of the reclusive, power-filled, little Pokemon. His first step is to find the “psychic Pokemon” called Kadabra and snatch it from its telepathic, pink-eyed trainer, Sabrina.

Or so it would seem to a first-time viewer not familiar with the contradictory themes. Actually, Ash doesn’t try to “catch” Kadabra, an evolved version of the Pokemon Abra. In spite of the prodding to increase his inventory of Pokemon warriors — and in spite of the constant reminders to “catch them all” — Ash was merely trying to win a standard battle. With the ghost Haunter on his side, it should have been a cinch!

But Ash underestimates the power of his opponent. When he and Sabrina meet for the fight, both hurl their chosen Pokemon into the air, but only Abra (who becomes Kadabra) evolves into a super-monster with a magic flash. Haunter hides. “Looks like your ghost Pokemon got spooked,” taunts Sabrina.4 Click here to continue reading.

Related Articles:

Pokemon Go is Dangerous – Someone’s story

Three Ways to Protect Your Child From Harmful Toys & Games by Berit Kjos

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NEW BOOKLET: The Unseen Foe Behind Rising Evil And Putting on the Armor of God

NEW BOOKLET:The Unseen Foe Behind Rising Evil And Putting on the Armor of God by Berit Kjos is our newest Lighthouse Trails Booklet Tract.  The Booklet Tract is 10 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklet Tracts are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use. Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of The Unseen Foe Behind Rising Evil And Putting on the Armor of God, click here. There are also two charts included in this booklet that are not on this online version.

The Unseen Foe Behind Rising Evil And Putting on the Armor of God

bkt-bk-amr-sBy Berit Kjos

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron. (1 Timothy 4:1-2)

We don’t hear much about spiritual warfare these days. Most churches seem to ignore the reality of Satan and the evil he inspires. God’s warnings about fellowship with the world’s alluring thrills doesn’t fit the contemporary image of Jesus as a tolerant, easy-going friend.

Since the 18th century’s birth of the “Age of Reason,” an increasing number of “enlightened” Western leaders and influential “change agents” have tried to discredit the Bible and silence believers. More recently, a vast number of politicians, media masters, and educators have joined this war against biblical truth and Christian values.

No wonder our public schools are becoming bastions of atheism, immorality and—spreading fast—the promotion of Islam. Like the persecuted Jews during and after Hitler’s holocaust, today’s Jews and Christians are facing hatred and rising persecution.

It’s no secret that Satan’s lies have sparked wars and cruelty through the ages. Ever since Adam and Eve chose to follow their own feelings and desires rather than God’s wise guidelines, humanity has faced assaults from “the evil one”—often through his willing pawns. Call him the Devil, Deceiver, Satan, or serpent; it doesn’t matter. It’s all the same ruthless oppressor:

And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world. (Revelation 12:9)

From the beginning, this invisible fiend has been seeding doubt, depravity, despair, and death. Through the ages, he has inspired idolatry, witchcraft, deadly curses, and magical arts used to control people and corrupt cultures. He lost some ground during America’s Christian-influenced era, when—by God’s grace—our nation’s society was largely free from such dark forces (though it was working silently in the background). But times have changed, and captivating forces of evil have mesmerized and captivated vulnerable children and foolish adults.

In 2014, Fox Network launched a new TV series that glorifies Lucifer; marketed with pro-Satan tweets:

The more subtle side of satanism in Hollywood entertainment is now a thing of the past, as primetime television airs blatantly evil shows like the upcoming Fox drama Lucifer, which glorifies the goings about of the “lord of hell;” after he fictitiously leaves the lake of fire and retires to Los Angeles.

The premise behind the absurd drama, which is set to release in 2016, centers around so-called “Lucifer Morningstar” and his new life as the owner of Lux, an upscale nightclub located in the City of Angels. . . . . “It’s only fitting, then, that this modern-day show produced by satanists would portray Lucifer as a type of benevolent god . . . to take the place of the real God. . . . Whether you believe what the Bible says or not, this is the clear-as-day implication of this upcoming show that will soon be watched by presumably millions of people.”1

The world has changed drastically over the last half a century, and we must prepare for the challenges ahead. Our children and grandchildren need to know and remember scriptural warnings such as:

There shall not be found among you any one that . . . useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. . . . For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord . . .” (Deuteronomy 18:10-12)

Satan knows well that no nation can maintain true freedom apart from God’s moral law. Quenched by propaganda, hedonism, and distorted views of God’s truth, the biblical values that permeated American society are fading fast—even in churches. Some years ago, a youth pastor sent me this conflicting message:

I am a strong Christian and love the Lord with all my heart. The problem is I really enjoy reading the Harry Potter books and nothing about them conflicts with my spirit.2

A young woman who called herself “a solitary witch” wrote this revealing message:

I am a Harry Potter fan for several reasons. . . . You are not just drawn into the story but into that world. Then through talking about them with fans you fall further and further in love with the characters, you analyze them and worry about them until they feel real to you. Then you have, in a way, become a part of that shared universe, and it is a wonderful place to be.3

What a cruel illusion! When a nation (or a people) turns from God’s ways to decadence and imaginary thrills, our Lord withdraws His blessings and protection. And when Satan has his way, calamity reigns. Remember, the evil one rules a hierarchy of like-minded demonic beings:

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. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (Ephesians 6:12-13)

Such an “evil day” may already be upon us. Fear and oppression are increasingly occurring in a wayward America—as they have in so many other nations in the history of mankind. And now, with today’s massive movement of migrants who—like some of our leaders—despise both Jews and Christians, America and the world at large are changing faster than ever. What’s more, unthinkable occultism, New Age mysticism, and secret societies continue saturating Western countries like America, the UK, and Germany. Some of those empowered servants of darkness may well join tomorrow’s tyrants.

In the midst of this intense spiritual battle, are we prepared to “stand firm” in Jesus Christ, wear His armor as we face the challenges ahead, and be a faithful witness to a lost and dying world?

With our limited insights into His heavenly plans, we may be tempted to complain. To resist that lure, we need to trust God, know His Word, and remember His wonderful promises. No matter what challenges we face, He is with us—strengthening our faith and training us to endure!

Let us be assured that we can count on our Lord and King to win this battle on behalf of His people. While we know the world is entering dark times, we know that in the end, God wins. He is the Lord and King over all, and His wisdom and long-range plans far surpass our finite understanding.

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)

God’s Armor: A Shelter in the Storm

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. . . . Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit. (Ephesians 6:10-11, 14-18)

God’s armor brings victory because it is far more than a protective covering. It is the very essence of Jesus Christ Himself, and with it, we will be able to withstand evil when it comes our way.

When you put on the armor of God, He becomes your hiding place and your shelter in the storm—just as He was to David. Hidden in Him, you can count on His victory, for He not only covers you as a shield, He also fills you with His life:

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. (John 15:5)

Since living in the safety of the armor means abiding in Jesus, we can expect to share in “the fellowship of His sufferings” (Philippians 3:10)—His struggles as well as His peace. Remember, God offers us His victory in the midst of trouble—not always in the absence of pain. So “think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings” (1 Peter 4:12-13).

When you put on His armor, His life surrounds you and keeps you safe in Him. He is your precious friend, and you are His! So “put on Christ” (Galatians 3:27). He is your victory!

Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. (Psalm 32:7)

Putting On God’s Armor

This life in Christ begins with knowing and trusting each part of the armor. The first part is TRUTH—God’s revelation of all He is to us, all He has done for us, and all He promises to do for us in the days ahead. This wonderful, everlasting TRUTH is written in the Bible, revealed by the Holy Spirit, and realized through Jesus Christ.

It cuts through all the world’s distortions, deceptions, and compromises. When you study, memorize, live, and follow TRUTH, He enables you to see the world from God’s high vantage point. For He is the Truth! Putting on the first piece of the armor means feeding on truth through daily Bible reading and making it part of yourself.

To put on the “whole armour”—and enjoy a daily and eternal love-relationship with Jesus Christ, thank Him for what He has shown you in His Word. Know the Scriptures behind your prayer so that your words and faith are grounded in the authority of the Bible. Then pray through each piece. You can use the following prayer as a general outline:

The Belt of TRUTH: Thank You, my Lord, for showing me the TRUTH about Yourself, Your plans, and Your ways. Thank You for reminding me that You are the only God, the Creator of Heaven and earth, the King of the universe, my Father who loves me, and my Shepherd who leads me. You are my wisdom, my counselor, my hope, and my strength. You are everything I need each day.

The Breastplate of RIGHTEOUSNESS: Thank You for showing me the truth about myself—that on my own I could never be good enough to live in Your presence. Thank You for taking my sins to the Cross and offering me Your perfect, RIGHTEOUS life. Lord, show me any sin I need to confess, so nothing will hinder me from being filled to overflowing with Your Spirit. Thank You for forgiving me and for filling me with Your righteous life.

The Sandals of the Preparation of the GOSPEL of Peace: Thank You for the Gospel that we can readily share with others, which brings true peace with God, reconciling us to Him through Christ.

The Shield of FAITH: Thank You for helping me have FAITH in You. I choose to count on everything You have shown me about Yourself—and everything You have promised me in Your Word.

The Helmet of SALVATION: Thank You for promising me SALVATION both for today’s battles and for all eternity.

The Sword of the SPIRIT, the Word of God: Thank You for the Scriptures You have given me to memorize. Please show me which ones You want me to use to cut through deceptions and gain Your victory in any battle I may face today.

Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints. Ephesians 6:18

** There are also two charts included in this booklet that are not on this online version.

To order copies of The Unseen Foe Behind Rising Evil And Putting on the Armor of God, click here.

Endnotes
1. http://www.amtvmedia.com/fox-launches-tv-series-glorifies-lucifer/.
2. This was a personal note from a private person.
3. This was a personal note from a private person.

To order copies of The Unseen Foe Behind Rising Evil And Putting on the Armor of God, click here.

 

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Aliens, UFOs, & a (False) New Age Christ

bigstock--125723432By Berit Kjos

The invasion of monsters began decades ago, and it quickly transformed the world of entertainment. With little resistance, an army of cute-ugly creatures swept into toy stores, television, and movies. They now adorn children’s clothes, bedding, wallpaper, lunchboxes, and books. And many have pushed their way into children’s hearts on the backs of seductive and misleading fables that mold their thoughts and manipulate their imagination.

Some of these monsters are crude and cool like Stitch, Shrek, and the serpentine aliens of Men in Black. Others appear wise and honorable like Yoda in Star Wars. But the creatures that win the prize for thrills and chills are the dark and deadly looking ones like Darth Maul, Tolkien’s Orcs, and the ominous aliens in Signs.

They all serve a set of strategic social and spiritual goals: They entertain. They shift a person’s attention from the real world to a more titillating realm created by those who write the myths and steer the imagination. They tempt Christian fans to re-imagine or reinvent both God and themselves in the new context—thus bending the old realities to fit the re-envisioned ones. They desensitize their fans to mystical images and symbols of evil. And they stir a craving for more intense excitement of the same kind.

Eventually the real world of nature, families, work, and biblical truth becomes too boring to be enjoyed. Who cares about truth and facts when folklore and fantasies seem far more titillating and exciting?

Today’s techno-progressive mystical-oriented world has little tolerance for biblical watchfulness. Instead, it embraces its mythical heroes with a driving passion that often eclipses both family and reality. The more shocking, crude, insidious looking, and ugly, the more cool and captivating the product. Hollywood and toy makers know that well.

Perhaps you remember the Madballs from the late eighties. The grotesque bouncing heads bore matching names like Wolf Breath, Swine Sucker, and Screamin’ Meenie. With shrewd foresight, their inventor, Ralph Shaffer, suggested that his successful minispheres would “take the world of cute-ugly into a new direction.”1

He was right. The horrific-ugly as well as the cute-ugly began turning a corner and pulling Western culture along with it. Grotesque, demonic-looking creatures with fiery eyes infiltrated toy stores and sold like hotcakes. Many were mutants—part animal and part human, or an admixture of animal and monster. And most could wield the kind of supernatural power featured in their respective legends and stories.

They won incredible popularity. Children quickly overcame their natural aversion to scary images and learned to treasure these ugly, hybrid, mutant supernaturals. Few noticed their resemblance to the demonic creatures described in the Bible.

One of those early creatures of darkness, Black Star, would ride on a green horse with huge bat-like wings and a long dragon tail. Its eyes were glowing red and a long tongue dangled from its mouth. Another popular invader, Dark Dragon, had black wings and a huge tail with red scales along the sides. Hiding a skull in its chest, it had a lion’s mouth, teeth, and claws. Its eyes were glowing red, and out of the center of its forehead shone a large, green third eye.

In a lecture titled, “The Rising Interest in the Supernatural,” Larry McLean, coauthor of The Early Earth, compares today’s grotesque toys to historical images representing ancient gods:

These [creatures] that show up in archeology and what we would call mythology were not just figments of the imagination. They were . . . represented as part human and part animal in their characteristics like this bird-human of the Assyrians. [They can be] horse-and-human like centaurs. Or fish-and-human like the god Dagon of the Philistines . . . or part jaguar and part human.

Notice that tongue hanging out over the chin—which is a universal symbol of demonic possession. . . . One of the most popular combinations is human and serpent. . . . It’s not surprising that pagan religions worshiped serpents and dragons, for the Bible tells us in Revelation 12 that the old serpent, the dragon, is Satan the devil.2

Nor should today’s growing popularity of devilish images surprise us. The Bible prophesies that demonic activities will escalate before and during the reign of the Antichrist. Could the multiplication of demonic-looking, alien images be part of Satan’s plan to prepare us for these awful future events?

Don’t laugh. There is plenty of evidence that a sizable percentage of UFO sightings, alien abductions, crop circles, and other extraterrestrial manifestations fit into the realm of the supernatural. According to John Ankerberg and John Weldon’s book The Facts on UFO’s and other Supernatural Phenomena:

[F]ew unbiased researchers can logically deny that UFO experiences are of an occult nature. If we catalog the basic characteristics of the occult and compare them to UFO phenomena, we discover an essential similarity. . . .

After 20 years of research, we believe that the demonic theory dovetails extremely well with the totality of UFO phenomena. . . . In fact, we know of no UFO contactee who is not basically a spiritistic medium. In addition, we have read hundreds of articles from the oldest and most respected UFO journal, the British Flying Saucer Review, that indicate the psychic and/or non-extraterrestrial aspects of UFOs which, given their actions and messages, indicate probable demonic origin.3

These threats have not escaped notice. According to “Above Top Secret: The Worldwide UFO Cover-up” by Timothy Good, “the ubiquitous UFO phenomenon . . . [is] a phenomenon that has caused grave concern at high levels of many of the world’s governments, despite their statements to the contrary.”4

Ankerberg and Weldon arrived at the same conclusion. They found that “in the U.S. alone, tens of millions of dollars have been spent in official UFO investigations by the CIA, FBI, U.S. Army Intelligence, Naval Intelligence, and other organizations.” They quote astrophysicist Dr. Jacques Vallee who describes the UFO event as “a bizarre, seductive, and often terrifying phenomenon reported by many witnesses as contact with an alien form of intelligence.”5

Naturally, many UFO enthusiasts and New Age leaders would disagree. Some began to circulate the far-out notion decades ago: A group of benevolent aliens or ascended masters would suddenly appear on the earth and cleanse it from all who resist its spiritual evolution toward global oneness. At the same time, they would prepare humanity to receive the prophesied New Age “Christ.”

Maybe not so far-out after all, at least according to one major New Age figure, Barbara Marx Hubbard. Marx Hubbard believes there will indeed be a cleansing of all those who resist the coming together of all humanity and rejection of its “Christ.” She calls this process of cleansing the “Selection Process.” Listen to a few quotes by Marx Hubbard as she describes this cleansing. Keep in mind while reading these that Marx Hubbard is not some glassy-eyed spaced-out hippy from the ’60s living on an isolated mountainside. As a matter of fact, she was instrumental in forming a lobby group in Washington D.C. to create a “U.S. Department of Peace.” This organization, called The Peace Alliance, has worked with willing Congress members and other influential figures (such as the late Walter Cronkite) to bring about this Peace plan.6 From Marx Hubbard’s book, The Revelation, she quotes from her “Christ”:

Dearly beloved, I approached the crucifixion far more easily than I approach the selection. The crucifixion was done unto my body. The selection will be done unto yours.7

The decisive moment of selection has almost come. The judgment of the quick and the dead is about to be made. The end of this phase of evolution is nearly complete.8

By your acts you shall be judged as to whether you can evolve, or must be “cast into the lake of fire,” which is the second death.9

The selection process will exclude all who are exclusive. The selection process assures that only the loving will evolve to the stage of co-creator.10

The end is near. The old play is almost over. Suffice it to say, that if you do not choose to evolve into a wholesome, co-creative human, then you shall not.11

In former New Age follower Warren B. Smith’s book, False Christ Coming: Does Anybody Care?, Smith unveils Marx Hubbard’s “Selection Process”:

Hubbard’s “Christ,” while describing the “birth experience” and professing his love for all mankind, nevertheless warns that there will be no place in the “New Jerusalem” for those who refuse to see themselves and others as a part of God. He describes, therefore, the necessity of a “selection process” that will select out resistant individuals who “choose” not to evolve. This “selection process” is a “purification” that will be accomplished through “the shock of a fire.”12

Marx Hubbard likens those who resist this “co-creative stage of evolution,” to a “lethal cancer cell in a body: deadly to itself and to the whole.”13 She explains:

The surgeon dare leave no cancer in the body when he closes up the wound after a delicate operation. We dare leave no self-centeredness on Earth after the selection process.14

Regardless of how this apocalyptic scenario will play out, be it with the supposed and added element of “aliens” or “ascended masters,” or not, these demonic beings will no doubt come as “angel[s] of light” and “ministers of righteousness” (2 Corinthians 11:14-15) illustrating “the beautiful side of evil” rather than the grotesque images of occult idols in order to “deceiveth the whole world” (Revelation 12:9). These “masters” represent a hierarchy of warring demons that match the warning in Ephesians 6:12, which tells us that our battle is not against “flesh and blood” but rather against the “rulers of the darkness of this world” and “against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

Different versions of these seductive deceptions have spread around the world through the writings of countless occultists. Their numbers include the infamous Satanist Aleister Crowley as well as the occultic “prophetess” Alice Bailey, whose channeled messages from spirit guide Djwhal Khul inspired United Nations and many education leaders.

But God’s Word shows us the truths behind those illusions. Revelation 9:1-11 foresees a day when the Abyss (the bottomless pit where Satan will be cast) will open with a burst of smoke and release an army of powerful deadly creatures onto the earth. They will look like a mixture of man, horse, and locust with wings. They will have stinging “tails like unto scorpions,” and their commander will be Satan himself. Our God will allow it; for man’s evil—as in the days of Noah—and God’s eternal justice will call forth His judgment.

Though children are born with a natural fear of hideous, shocking, and evil-looking creatures, this God-given protection has been dulled by the Western world’s mass-media marketing system. Children are being conditioned to embrace demonic manifestations, whether they come as beings with superior intelligence from outer space to rescue planet Earth or as evolved mutations from earth itself. Why wouldn’t they accept these lies?

Unless we teach them otherwise, today’s postmodern anti-biblical beliefs in both physical and cosmic evolution lead most of them to trust in deceptions. Of course—they are told—life had to have evolved on other planets! If there really is a God, He wouldn’t have created the whole universe just for earthlings, would He?

Yes, He would. Why shouldn’t our God, who sent His own Son to die for us, create such a universe? Why not make it so vast that man’s ego would be humbled by such might? Maybe He did it to show us the immeasurable greatness of His magnificent, incomprehensible creative powers and the infinite width, length, height, and depth of His magnificent love. I believe He did.

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? . . . For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. (Romans 11:33-34, 36)

Endnotes:

1. Stefan Kanfer, “In All Seasons, Toys Are Us” (Time magazine, June 24, 2001), citing Ralph Shaffer, former director of new-product development at General Mills Toy Group who worked with Bernard Loomis who conceived the idea of sets of action figures “with lots of characters and a story tying them together.” Promoted through television, these toys required little personal imagination since they came with built in myths and pre-designed personalities. Read the interesting history by David Owen in “Where Toys Come From” (The Atlantic Monthly, http://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/86oct/owen.htm, October 1986).
2. Larry McLean, from tape of lecture titled, “The Rising Interest in the Supernatural” given at the Seventh Mid-America Prophecy Conference, Oklahoma City, July 27, 1988.
3. John Ankerberg and John Weldon, The Facts on UFOs and Other Supernatural Phenomena (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1992), pp. 14-15.
4. Ibid., p. 6, citing Timothy Good, Above Top Secret: The Worldwide UFO Cover-up (New York, NY: Morrow, 1988), p. 12.
5. Ibid., pp. 5, 18.
6. For detailed information on Barbara Marx Hubbard’s Peace Plan, please read Mike Oppenheimer’s article titled “The Plan” online at: http://www.letusreason.org/NAM20.htm.
7. Barbara Marx Hubbard, The Revelation (Belvedere Tiburon, CA: Nataraj Publishing, 2nd ed., 1995),  p. 197.
8. Ibid., p. 189.
9. Ibid., p. 254.
10. Ibid., p. 303.
11. Ibid., p. 195.
12. Warren B. Smith, False Christ Coming: Does Anybody Care?, op. cit., p. 28.
13. Barbara Marx Hubbard, The Revelation, op. cit., p. 255.
14. Ibid., p. 240.

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Spiritual Warfare: The Unseen Foe Behind Rising Evil

By Berit Kjos
Kjos Ministries

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron…” 1 Timothy  4:1-2

We don’t hear much about spiritual warfare these days. Most churches seem to ignore the reality of Satan and the evil he inspires. God’s warnings about fellowship with the world’s alluring thrills doesn’t fit the contemporary image of Jesus as a tolerant, easy-going friend.

Since the 18th century’s birth of the “Age of Reason,” an increasing number of “enlightened” Western leaders and influential “change agents” have tried to discredit the Bible and silence believers. More recently, a vast number of politicians, media masters and educators have joined this war against biblical truth and Christian values.

No wonder our public schools are becoming bastions of atheism, immorality and — spreading fast — the promotion of Islam. Like the persecuted Jews during and after Hitler’s holocaust, today’s Jews and Christians are facing hatred and rising persecution for standing firm in their faith.

It’s no secret that Satan’s lies have sparked wars and cruelty through the ages. Ever since Eve chose to follow her own feelings rather than God’s wise guidelines, humanity has faced assaults from “the evil one” — often through his willing pawns. Call him the Devil, Deceiver, Satan, or serpent; it doesn’t matter. It’s all the same ruthless oppressor:

“And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world…” Revelation 12:9

From the beginning, this invisible fiend has been seeding doubt, depravity, despair and death. Through the ages, he has inspired idolatry, witchcraft, deadly curses and magical arts that were used to control people and corrupt cultures. He lost some ground during America’s Christian era, when — by God’s grace — our nation was relatively free from such dark forces. But our times are changing fast, and once again the captivating forces of evil are mesmerizing vulnerable children as well as adults.

In 2014, Fox Network launched a new TV series that glorifies Lucifer; marketed with pro-Satan tweets:

“The more subtle side of satanism in Hollywood entertainment is now a thing of the past, as primetime television airs blatantly evil shows like the upcoming Fox drama Lucifer, which glorifies the goings about of the ‘lord of hell’; after he fictitiously leaves the lake of fire and retires to Los Angeles.

“The premise behind the absurd drama, which is set to release in 2016, centers around so-called ‘Lucifer Morningstar’ and his new life as the owner of Lux, an upscale nightclub located in the City of Angels…. ‘It’s only fitting, then, that this modern-day show produced by satanists would portray Lucifer as a type of benevolent god… to take the place of the real God…. Whether you believe what the Bible says or not, this is the clear-as-day implication of this upcoming show that will soon be watched by presumably millions of people.”[1]

This world is changing fast, and we must prepare for the challenges ahead. Our children need to know and remember warnings like these:

“There shall not be found among you any one that…  that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer….  For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord…”  Deuteronomy 18:10-12

Satan knows well that no nation can maintain true freedom apart from God’s moral law. Quenched by propaganda, hedonism and distorted views of God’s Truth, the biblical values that made America kind, generous, honest and successful are now fading fast — even in churches. Some years ago a youth pastor sent me this conflicting message:

“I am a strong Christian and love the Lord with all my heart. The problem is I really enjoy reading the Harry Potter books and nothing about them conflicts with my spirit…”[2]

A young woman who called herself “a solitary witch” wrote this revealing message:

“I am a Harry Potter fan for several reasons. … You are not just drawn into the story but into that world. Then through talking about them with fans you fall further and further in love with the characters, you analyze them and worry about them until they feel real to you. Then you have, in a way, become a part of that shared universe, and it is a wonderful place to be.”[3]

What a cruel illusion! When a nation turns from God’s ways to decadence and imaginary thrills, our Lord withdraws His blessings and protection. And when Satan has his way, calamity reigns. Remember, the evil one rules a hierarchy of like-minded demonic beings:

“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. Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God , that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”  Ephesians 6:12-13

That “evil day” may already be upon us. It’s beginning to bring fear and oppression to wayward America — as it did to the persecuted Christians in the Middle East. And now, with today’s massive movement of migrants who — like some of our leaders — despise both Jews and Christians, our world is changing faster than ever. What’s more, Western countries like America, the UK and Germany are still hosts to unthinkable occultism and secret societies. Some of those empowered servants of darkness may well join tomorrow’s tyrants.

Are we prepared to “stand firm” in Jesus Christ, wearing His Armor  as we face the challenges ahead? Can we count on our Lord and King to win this battle on behalf of His people?

Yes we can! God always wins — even when the victory looks more like defeat to us! He is the sovereign Lord and King over all, and His wisdom and long-range plans for our lives far surpass our finite understanding. Everything is under His command:

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

With our limited insights into His heavenly plans, we may be tempted to complain. To resist that lure, we need to trust God, know His Word, and remember His Wonderful Promises.  No matter what challenges we face, He is with us – strengthening our faith and training us to endure! For,

“…in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.” Romans 8:37

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil….  

“Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness; and shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all,  taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

“And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit…”   Ephesians 6:10-11, 14-18.

  1. Fox Network launched a new “TV series that glorifies Lucifer; marketed with pro-Satan tweets.”
  2. This was a personal note from a private person.
  3. This was a personal note from a private person.

Used with permission from Kjos Ministries.

 

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Out-of-House Press Release: HSLDA Releases Common Core Documentary

photo from bigstockphoto.com; used with permission

photo from bigstockphoto.com; used with permission

This global agenda [Common Core] is far more intrusive, demanding, and dangerous to Christian families than most of us can imagine.—Berit Kjos, author of A Common Core for a Global Community

LTRP Note: The following is posted for informational purposes. Because Lighthouse Trails is an advocate for children in a number of areas (education, New Age, sexual abuse, etc), we believe parents need to know about Common Core. You may watch the video of the documentary discussed in this press release below (keep in mind, HSLDA interviewed some people who were promoting Common Core to show how the defense is being presented, but HSLDA is not promoting those views). Lighthouse Trails is not affiliated with HSLDA but appreciates the work they do in defending the rights of parents to homeschool their children in the U.S. If you want more information about Common Core, please read Berit Kjos’ important booklet A Common Core for a Global Community and share it with those you know who have school-age children.

Contact: Michael Farris, Jr., Home School Legal Defense Association, 540-338-5600, mfarrisjr@hslda.org

PURCELLVILLE, Va., March 31, 2014 /Christian Newswire/ — The Home School Legal Defense Association today released its highly-anticipated documentary Building the Machine, a film that investigates the Common Core State Standards Initiative and how it will affect the American education system.

HSLDA has been opposing Common Core since 2009 and, as public concern over the standards grew, HSLDA Chairman Michael Farris decided that creating a film about the standards would be the best way to make information about Common Core widely available.

Mike Smith, president of HSLDA, says that this film is the first of its kind and will change the conversation. “Homeschooling has shown us that an individualized education is the best thing for a child,” he said. “Common Core is the complete opposite of that. Our hope is that the film will cause a ‘great awakening’ and that parents will question the one-size-fits-all education reform being implemented behind closed doors.” Click here to continue reading this press release from HSLDA.

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2015 YEAR IN REVIEW – PART 5 – TOP 10 ARTICLES BY LIGHTHOUSE TRAILS AUTHORS

See also Part 1 Year in Review | See also Part 2 Year in Review | See also Part 3 Year in Review | See Also Part 4 Year in Review

In order of date posted.

Caryl Matrisciana

Caryl Matrisciana

1/A Special Letter from Caryl Matrisciana – Reflections on Sorrow by Caryl Matrisciana

I’m so grateful to Jesus Christ for having walked the sorrows of this life and given us His example of how godly sorrow vs. worldly sorrow can be faced through the empowerment of His Holy Spirit, which is freely given to believers as His Gift of Grace (2 Corinthians 1:5-6; Hebrews 2:10;). The apostle Paul distinguishes two sorts of sorrow: “Godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death” (2 Corinthians  7:10). The one is that sorrow for sin [that is] wrought by God [and] leads to repentance, while the other is a sorrow about worldly objects which, when separated from the fear of God, tends to death, temporal and eternal. (Unger Bible Dictionary)

Roger Oakland

Roger Oakland

2/Rick Warren’s Dangerous Ecumenical Pathway to Rome And How One Interview Revealed So Much by Roger Oakland

In 2014, Rick Warren (called “America’s Pastor) was interviewed by Catholic T.V. network host Raymond Arroyo. The interview took place at the Saddleback Church campus and was posted on YouTube by EWTN in April of 2014. Because I had written previously in 2013 about Rick Warren’s connections to Rome and to the Catholic convert Tony Blair (former prime minister of Britain), I was very aware that Rick Warren was heading down the path toward Rome. But not until I saw this interview did I realize just how far he has gone in that direction.

cedric-fisher

Cedric Fisher

3/The Unacknowledged War and the Wearing Down of the Saints by Cedric Fisher

In the wake of a brutal execution of Christians at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon in October 2015, the Obama administration announced the appointment of a new czar position to supposedly battle domestic terrorism.

Ray Yungen

Ray Yungen

4/Pope Francis and the Thomas Merton Connection by Ray Yungen

n 2013, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina was elected Pope Francis the First. This new pope immediately began causing ripples in the Catholic Church with his statements on certain issues. He also caused many to take notice of his unpapal lifestyle such as living in a guesthouse with twelve others rather than living in the papal apartments like previous popes. He projects a down-to-earth image that denotes compassion and trust. He has been called the people’s pope, someone who is your friend, someone you can trust. But there are certain things about Pope Francis’ coming on the scene that are being ignored by the media and most people.

smith

Warren B. Smith

  5/Be Still and Know That You are Not God!—God is Not “in” Everyone and Everything by Warren B. Smith

Our Spiritual Adversary would have everyone believe that we are all “one” because God is “in” everyone and everything. Using every promotional means possible—including a creative and ingenious perversion of quantum physics—he is attempting to convince the world and the church that while Jesus was Christ, so is everyone. And while Jesus was God, so is everyone else. To underscore this heretical New Age doctrine of God and Christ “in” everyone, he would have us further believe that nothing of any significance happened on the Cross of Calvary.

6/Beth Moore & Priscilla Shirer – Their History of Contemplative Prayer and Why War Room Should Not Have Used Them by John Lanagan

Contemplative prayer, which Priscilla Shirer refers to as her “brand new way” and Beth Moore says is essential in really knowing God, is in reality an ancient prayer practice that is essentially the same as New Age or Eastern meditation though disguised with Christian terminology. Those who participate and enter the contemplative silence, as it is called, open themselves to great deception.

7/“For God So Loved the World . . . That Whosoever!” by Harry Ironside

Why do so many people think this is the greatest text in the Bible? There are other wonderful texts that dwell on the love of God, that show how men are delivered from judgment, that tell us how we may obtain everlasting life; but no other one verse, as far as I can see, gives us all these precious truths so clearly and so distinctly. So true is this that when the Gospel is carried into heathen lands, and missionaries want to give a synopsis of the Gospel to a pagan people, all they find it necessary to do, if they are going to a people that have a written language, is to translate and print this verse, and it tells out the story that they are so anxious for the people to hear.

Berit Kjos

Berit Kjos

8/The New Age, Occultism, and Our Children in Public Schools by Berit Kjos

Why would our country, so richly blessed by God, embrace the occult? What caused this drastic change in values? How could it have happened so seemingly fast?! Actually, the entire Western world had already been “softened up” by the 1960s when the rising rebellion against God erupted into public view.

9/D is for Deception: The Language of the “New” Christianity by Kevin Reeves

A number of years ago, a book written by emerging-church leaders Brian McLaren and Leonard Sweet was released. The book was called A is for Abductive: the language of the emerging church. Going through the alphabet, the authors identified many terms they hoped would be picked up by the younger generation, thus creating a unique emerging spiritual atmosphere. They called it a “primer with a mission.” That mission that McLaren, Sweet, and other like-minded change agents embrace has been successful in bringing in a new kind of “Christianity. . . .”

Lynn Lusby Pratt

Lynn Lusby Pratt

10/BIG NOISY GOD—Dispelling the Rumor that God Can Be Found “Only in the Silence” by Lynn Lusby Pratt

Have you heard the rumor going around—that God can be found “only in the silence”? Don’t buy it. Please understand. I love quiet. I drive for hours with the radio off, sit in the porch swing and listen to the birds, and lie on Gram’s quilt in the dark to watch the stars. I insist on quiet for Bible and prayer time.

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