I Am Not Afraid: Demon Possession And Spiritual Warfare

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While Africa and Madagascar seem like strange and faraway places, the world in which we now live has become much smaller than many of us could ever have imagined. Moreover, even our neighbors visit the local fortuneteller, read the horoscope page in the newspaper, and attend séances that seek to reach departed friends, lovers, and family members. Consequently, as we begin a journey into faraway places, we may soon find they are not as far away as we may have expected.

From Chapter 3

I Am Not Afraid is Rev. Dr. Robert Bennett s fascinating first-hand account of the spiritual warfare found within the Lutheran Church of Madagascar. Is spiritual warfare something new to the Church? Bennett reviews what the Bible, Church Fathers, and contemporary Lutheran leaders have to say.

Part One includes recent conversations dealing with spiritual warfare, an introduction into the Malagasy Lutheran Church, and the traditional Malagasy worldview. These are the stories of those who have been rescued from the darkness of sin and brought into the light of the Gospel.

Part Two looks to the Bible and the Church for explanation and historical perspective on the spiritual warfare found in the Malagasy Lutheran Church. Is it something only found in the time of Jesus and the apostles? What has the Church said in the past about such activities? Bennett explores the views of Martin Luther and other Lutheran leaders, and finally provides some helpful contemporary material and resources for dealing with spiritual warfare in today s context.

Includes a glossary of key terms, transcripts of personal interviews, bibliography, Scripture index, and subject index.

The Author

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Dr. Robert H Bennett is the Executive Director of Luther Academy. Before accepting the position to Luther Academy, Bennett served as the Administrative Pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church and School of Reese, Michigan (2009-2014) and Senior Pastor of Our Savior Lutheran Church of Benzonia, Michigan (2001-2009).

He enjoys teaching in the areas of The Lutheran Confessions, and Pastoral Theology. Bennett also serves as an International Mission Specialist and Guest Professor of Missions at Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Dr. Bennett holds the degrees of B.A. from Concordia University, Ann Arbor (Human Resource Management), M.Div. (Exegetical Studies), S.T.M (Exegetical Studies) and PhD (Missiology) from Concordia

Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne Indiana. His PhD research focused on the growth of the Lutheran Church of Madagascar (F.L.M.). Dr. Bennett’s research led to the publishing of his first book on the subject Malagasy Lutheranism, titled, I Am Not Afraid: Demon Possession and Spiritual Warfare. Bennett is also the author of Afraid: Demon Possession and Spiritual Warfare in America and numerous journal articles and book reviews.

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=dp_byline_sr_book_1?ie=UTF8&text=Robert+H.+Bennett&search-alias=books&field-author=Robert+H.+Bennett&sort=relevancerank

Top 20 African Countries Stink Of Corruption

Women sell food from their canoe at Makoko fishing community in LagosLagos: The Makoko slum in oil rich Nigeria crippled by corruption

In the abundance of water, is the fool thirsty? Africa is blessed with natural resources such as gold, oil, diamonds, cobalt, iron, copper, uranium, silver, bauxite, cocoa beans and petroleum etc. Unfortunately the standard of living of many people in the continent is deplorable. This is largely due to corrupt governments ruling many countries in the African continent.

Transparency International has been publishing the corruption perceptions index (CPI) since the turn of the new millennium. If a country has a CPI of 100 it is very clean. If the score is 0, then the country is highly corrupt.

Here is a brief overview of the top 20 most corrupt nations in Africa as of 2014, according to Transparency International.

=24. Mozambique (CPI score: 31)
Although the government of Mozambique has taken steps to fight corruption, its still a big problem. Corruption remains in both the public and donors, who support almost half of the nation’s budget.

=24. Sierra Leone (CPI score: 31)
Systematic corruption has caused weak governance and widespread poverty in Sierra Leone. The anti-corruption institutions still lack resources, staff and expertise.

=24. Tanzania (CPI score: 31)
Although there are comprehensive laws to fight corruption, its still a serious problems in Tanzania with bribery is often demanded in the business sector.

23. Mauritania (CPI score: 30)
Corruption has become deeply entrenched in Mauritania. Part of what fuels corruption in this nation is the insufficient information or absence of transparency about local companies, the identities of their owners, and financial report.

=21. Gambia (CPI score: 29)
Gambia’s judiciary is subject to pervasive political interference, and there is corruption in many parts of the government.

=21. Togo (CPI score: 29)
Corruption in Togo is common and those involved rarely punish. Corruption more among prison and police officers, and members of the judiciary.

20. Madagascar (CPI score: 28)
Madagascar is one of the world’s poorest countries and has had a negative growth due to corruption.

=18. Cameroon (CPI score: 27)
In Cameroon, many corrupt civil servants drive around in their expensive luxury cars. People who try to bring these corrupt officers to justice pay a high price.

=18. Nigeria (CPI score: 27)
Political corruption pervades Nigeria. The rise of public administration and discovery of petroleum and natural gas have led to corrupt practices.

=16. Comoros (CPI score: 26)
Corruption remained a serious problem in Comoros, it lacks rule of law. The nation gained independence from France in 1975. Since then it has witnessed around 20 coups or coup attempts.

=16. Uganda (CPI score: 26)
Even though the country has experienced high growth rates in recent years, corruption remains widespread at all levels.

=14. Guinea (CPI score: 25)
Rampant corruption in Guinea is hindering economic growth and increasing drug trafficking.

=14. Kenya (CPI score: 25)
Political corruption in the post-colonial government of Kenya has had a history which spans the era of the Jomo Kenyatta and Daniel arap Moi’s KANU governments to Mwai Kibaki’s PNU government. Experts estimate that an average urban Kenyan pays 16 bribes in a month.

13. Central African Republic (CPI score: 24)
Growth of Central African Republic is significantly hindered by wide spread corruption. Corruption is rife and undermines timber and diamond industries.

12. Republic of Congo (CPI score: 23)
In spite of its oil wealth, Republic of Congo is one of the most indebted nations in the world. This is largely due to rampant corruption.

=10. Chad (CPI score: 22)
Feud and corruption are blocking Chad’s economic growth. Revenue from oil is not spent responsibly. Corruption rules this nation.

=10. Democratic Republic of Congo (CPI score: 22)
As the nation emerges from a long period of violence and instability, it struggles with a legacy of entrenched corruption at all levels.

=9. Zimbabwe (CPI score: 21)
Corruption in Zimbabwe has become endemic within its political, private and civil sectors. In 2011, finance minister Tendai Biti claimed that at least $1 billion in diamond related revenue owed to the national treasury remains unaccounted for.

8. Burundi (CPI score: 20)
Despite the establishment of anti-corruption agencies, Burundi is remains a corrupt country in sub-Saharan Africa.

=6. Angola (CPI score: 19)
Corruption is a pervasive phenomenon in Angola. The current government is working on containing corruption by enacting laws and enforcing integrity systems.

=6. Guinea Bissau (CPI score: 19)
Guinea Bissau was once hailed as a potential model for African development. Today it is one of the poorest nations in the world. This is largely due to corruption among high-ranking officials.

=4. Eritrea (CPI score: 18)
People in Eritrea are living in a fear-ridden environment. Corruption and greed are rampant among the members of the ruling party.

=4. Libya (CPI score: 18)
Before the downfall of the Qadhafi regime in 2011, weak rule of law and systematic corruption had largely marginalized private sector activity in the nation. Corruption is the biggest problem facing Libya today.

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Former Nigeria’s head of state, late Sani Abacha stole $458 million and hid in bank accounts around the world, while thousands of Nigerians live in poverty.

3. South Sudan (CPI score: 15)

Since independence, South Sudan has taken steps to promote transparency and accountability in an endeavor to eliminate corruption. Unfortunately political will is lacking in effective implementation of anti-corruption policies.

2. Sudan (CPI score: 11)
Top ranking government officials are frequently involved in corrupt practices in Sudan. This has impacted the economic growth negatively. It is a huge challenge to do business in Sudan. Sectors like construction and transportation are prone to corruption.

1. Somalia (CPI score: cool
The Federal Republic of Somalia is located in the horn of Africa. Around 10 million people live in this country. It is the most corrupt nation in the world. There is lack of accountability in receipt and expenditure of public funds. Currently a parliamentary finance committee has been established to oversee all withdrawal transactions from the Central Bank, which is Somalia’s official monetary authority.

If the above-mentioned nations tackle corruption effectively, they will be able to enhance the standard of living of their people significantly.

Source: http://www.richestlifestyle.com/most-corrupt-countries-in-africa/

HEALTH: Essential Benefit Of Cocoa Products

Cocoa

Thousands of people use Cocoa products, such as body cream, drink cocoa beverages and eat chocolates, yet don’t know the raw material which chocolate products are derived or how a Cocoa pod or bean looks like.

A journalist holding a Cocoa pod stops few people to see if they can find out what it is. Nobody was able to say what it was. Some said pawpaw and one said mango, that’s shocking because there is a big difference between mango and a Cocoa pod.

Ivory Coast is the leading country in West Africa producing 1.6 million tons of cocoa beans every year, making the country the world’s largest exporter, followed by Ghana. Other countries in Africa where Cocoa is grown is Nigeria, Cameroon, Togo, Liberia and Sierra Leone, which together represent more than 70% of world cocoa production.

In Africa Cocoa is also produced in Uganda, Tanzania, Madagascar, Equatorial Guinea and Sao Tome & Principe. Every year thousands tons of Cocoa beans are exported to Europe and America, which are processed to different consumer products, such chocolate bars, cosmetic products and drinks.

Cocoa trees begin to bear fruit when they are three to four years old, seldom reaching more than 7.5 meters (25 feet) high. There are two harvests in a year when the fruit is ripe. A split Cocoa pod, has the beans embedded in a soft white-jelly sweet tissue, which are dried in the sun. During fermentation the pulp which becomes a liquid drains away leaving behind the beans.

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Cocoa beans used to manufacture cocoa drinks, chocolate, body creams, soaps and body lotions.

The dried beans become raw material for the manufacture of Cocoa products such as chocolate, fertilizer for cocoa, vegetables, food crops, soft drinks, alcohol, Jam, marmalade and other products. It is also widely used in cosmetic products such as moisturizing creams and soaps. In the picture is a full and half pods of Cocoa with fresh beans, when the beans are dry, from which chocolate is derived.

There are many Health benefits of consuming Cocoa Products, following the discovery that they are a rich source of catechins, which are polyphenols of the flavanol group, and which are believed to protect against heart disease, cancer, and various other medical conditions.On the skin, Cocoa butter is high in antioxidants, which help fight free radical, that is stresses and signs of aging. Women, especially Africans claim that Cocoa butter help to reduce stretch marks.

Aids And Ebola Are Not Curses From God, They Are Medical Crimes

By Joel Savage and Johan Van Dongen

Polio 3Diseases are easily inflicted on Africans through contaminated vaccines.

 

Africa is a continent dominantly influenced by beliefs, traditional values, and superstitions. Close observation or research could also reveal that lack of education and poverty play a significant role in the thoughts of people, tribes, and individuals. Influenced by many outdated superstitions many tribes in Africa ignorantly consider certain issues as taboo or punishment from God.

Madagascar, for example, is one of the strongest superstitions countries off the coast of Africa. They believe that twins bring bad luck to the community and to this day, still hold this primitive ideology and philosophy about twins. According to history, twins are immediately separated, killed or abandoned in the forest after birth.

Why? To avoid the harsh punishment from the traditional chief and the community, families don’t keep twins. One of the bad lucks they believe could happen to them if families keep twins is the whole villagers would die. Lack of education, poverty, beliefs and superstition influence Africans, in such a way that they blame gods, ancestors, witches, wizards, and God for every misfortune.

It is unfortunate that till now many Africans still believe that Aids and Ebola are curses from God, to punish Africa for something they have done that has provoked God. While many Africans hold such view, it gives more room for America and Europe to continue testing their devilish vaccines on Africans.

According to Professor Johan Van Dongen, the Dutch scientist, and micro-surgeon, who got into trouble after revealing that Aids and Ebola are medical crimes, almost every vaccine made in America and Europe are tested on Africans to see the result. This has created an easy access to inflict on Africa certain diseases, such as Aids and Ebola.

This is not an accusation but a simple fact because Africa is a continent easy to penetrate by the West and America. The desperate African leaders always depend on Europe and America for miraculous solutions to their problems. The leaders come to Europe and America with various sizes of bowls to beg for food and financial aid. Thus; it is very easy to commit medical crimes in Africa and they are done unnoticed, under the nose of African leaders.

My experience in Europe for many years, reveals that the West and America view Africans leaders as stupid, ignorant and foolish. As an African, I know that African leaders aren’t stupid, but rather weak and helpless, the reason they find it very hard to confront Europe and America over crimes they commit in Africa. How do you expect Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone leaders to confront the West and America over Ebola in those countries when they desperately need help from the West and America?

Unfortunately, that’s unprofessional and cowardly act by Africans leaders, especially Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Guinea, to remain silent over medical crimes in Africa. They want to remain humble and good servants in the eyes of the West and America, but they see them as ignorant, stupid and lazy. In fact, African leaders are the source of mockery in the West and America. You can easily notice this as a journalist residing in Europe than Africa.

African leaders have a long way to go. They have to know that Europe and America will not help them to develop Africa because they can’t stand competition. Question: if they need to help Africa toward its development, where will they continue testing their new vaccines to combat diseases? Again where would they dump their unwanted nuclear and biological waste materials? The reason poverty alleviation remains an illusion than reality.

African leaders have so many challenges to face and tasks to execute, to avoid the next serious disease, stronger than Aids and Ebola, to be inflicted on the entire population of Africa. This is easy like one-two-three for European and American scientists because they are intelligent and thirsty to destroy Africa. If Aids and Ebola diseases, which were created in laboratories, have taken such huge number of Africans into their untimely grave, then you should know what they can do today and in the future.