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Thursday, 23 July 2015

Invisible Angels

I earlier wrote about a documented characteristic of the appearance of angels: they are so bright, it can be hard to look at them. On the other hand, it's also documented that angels can look quite ordinary. There are examples both in the Bible and from anecdotes of both. In this post, I'll address an interesting quality of incognito angels: it appears they can't be photographed.

I got to thinking about this recently when reading the original version of Dracula by Bram Stoker, which brought the term 'vampire' into colloquial English. Among the characteristics of a vampire described in Dracula (and apparently original to Stoker) was an inability to cast a reflection in a mirror. In other words, the phenomenon of seeing a vampire was not due to the physical reflection of light off its corporeal body, but some independent effect on the eye or visual cortex. Such appears to be the case with all visible angels, whether they be elect or fallen.

I base this on the testimony of a friend of mine, returned from a mission trip to northern Ghana. While there--he reported--during a church service, he spotted a dove in the rafters of the church; something not all that uncommon in Ghana. But when he attempted to snap a photo of it on his digital camera, all he could see in the viewer were the empty rafters. Looking directly, he could see the dove; looking at the camera, he couldn't. He snapped a photo anyways, which he showed us upon his return. It showed the rafters, but where the dove would have been the picture was totally washed out, as if hit by an intense beam of light.

I ran across another apparent example of an angel visible to the eye as an ordinary man, but incapable of being captured in a photograph:

The priest's image did not show up in a single one of some 70 photos of the crash site. But it turned out he wasn't actually an angel, after all according to a man who admits to having been the mystery priest:

So be careful about stories like this. I trust my friend's testimony, and saw the washed-out digital photo. But I wonder how many other stories like the 'mystery priest' end up being more than they actually were. Some level of science has been brought to bear on investigating this pheonomenon, but it has been roundly criticized for not being rigourous.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Indiana Revival Report - Day 182

It's been six months since Time To Revive first came in force to Indiana. It must be said with some amazement that they haven't left yet. The original six days in Goshen were extended to 52, then another week after a month of rest. This was followed in quick succession by a week in Kokomo, then a week in Bloomington, a week in South Bend, two weeks in the Valparaiso-Gary-Hobart area, and a week in Terre Haute. Finally, a week in Fort Wayne. Each city was followed by a week off, to give the team time to prepare for its next city.

Because every Revive Indiana city was within a 2 hour drive of a previous location, there was a growing army of Revive veterans from each city helping to jump-start the outreach in the next city, or the one after. An array of red T-shirts were designed with the logo of a respective city on the front, all with a map of Indiana on the back, with the "seven rays" design from the state flag superimposed.

Things were supposed to have wound down last week in Fort Wayne, but it didn't happen. From the first day to the last, turnout for the morning and afternoon outreaches was strong and steady. Reports soon came out of people being healed, both in the meetings and on the streets. Over thirty churches got behind the movement in a massive display of unity, and it became clear by the middle of the week that this outpouring was a repeat of Elkhart County half a year earlier. Sure enough, Revive Indiana (Ft Wayne) has been extended through this week. [UPDATE: it's been extended yet another week.]

First Assembly's Senior Pastor Ron Hawkins wasn't eager to get on board when it was first suggested that his church building would be the ideal place for Revive Ft. Wayne to meet. He'd been heavily involved in a general revival that had swept Ft. Wayne 20 years earlier, and wasn't interested in any other than the real thing. These were the five characteristics of revival that he was looking for before he'd get involved. And yes, once he found out that they were all characteristics of Revive Indiana, he jumped on board.

1. God said, I will pour out My Spirit in greater measure in the last days.
2. It will be more in the street than in the building.
3. It will be when "all the brothers are in the house."
4. There will be signs and wonders that rival those in the New Testament.
5. It will not be about a man, a ministry, or a manifestation; it will be about Jesus.

I've written about the lack of impact this revival has appeared to have, for example, on the local crime rate in Elkhart. But that seems to be changing; last night's testimonies included a report of a potential reprisal murder miraculously stopped, and the would-be murderer was there in the meeting to attest to his change of heart--and life.

I'm thinking that the Holy Spirit has a lot more to work with in the Black community--perhaps more on that later.