Photo courtesy of Sonja Brandt
By Kaytlyn Kindschy
Rev. Dr. Robert Bennett came to Concordia on Tuesday, Feb. 11, to share his findings on Exorcism and Spiritual Warfare as part of the Looking Beyond Speaker Series taking place on campus.
After studying at Concordia Ann Arbor and the seminary in Fort Wayne, Bennett became a pastor. He talked about his sparked interest in the topic of spiritual warfare after doing mission work and conversions in Madagascar.
“I got there and I kept running into exorcisms,” Bennett said.
After experiencing the cultural norm of talking to spirits in Madagascar, Bennett started to write books about demons and spiritual warfare. His first book, “I Am Not Afraid: Demon Possession and Spiritual Warfare”, led to pastors all over America reaching out to Bennett to discuss the topic.
“I had no idea so many pastors were dealing with spiritual warfare within their congregations,” Bennett said.
The anecdotes that he received led him to write his second book, “Afraid: Demon Possession and Spiritual Warfare in America ”, where he shared some of the stories that were sent to him and the advice he had for those pastors.
Bennett goes on to discuss the misleading nature of folklore within communities, using examples of Concordia’s own folklore about David Hall being haunted.
“Demons are active,” Bennett said, “Scripture does not lead us to believe that people die and walk around on the earth.”
Bennett brought up his belief of Jesus being the only exorcist and the Lord’s Prayer being a prayer of exorcism. He pointed out occurrences of exorcism in the bible, within 70 Hymns, and Luther’s morning and evening prayers.
“The Devil doesn’t care about what you see or how you feel about it, as long as you’re not looking at Christ,” Bennett said, “We are undergoing exorcism all the time because we understand the presence of Jesus.”