Powers of Darkness: Principalities & Powers in Paul’s Letters

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Paul Caneparo | Forum Activity | Posted: Wed, Mar 4 2020 8:31 AM

I'm having to be ruthless with my book choices at present because there are too many tempting sales!

I have this book on pre-pub which is releasing in a couple of weeks.

https://www.logos.com/product/168930/powers-of-darkness-principalities-and-powers-in-pauls-letters

I notice it was published 28 years ago. I see it referred to regularly which is why I ordered it. 

My question is, has the study in this area developed significantly in the last 28 such that there is a better book by an author with a similar pedigree that maybe I'd be better spending my money on?

Posts 11194
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 4 2020 9:02 AM

Well, Unseen (Realm) and similar look like the new hot-subject. Satan, stars, and the spirit(s).  Apologetically, it also looms large (Paul/followers as gnostic-ish). The 90s had a lot of good tomes. I'd think 30 day return is a good strategy.

"God will save his fallen angels and their broken wings He'll mend."

Posts 41
Angela Meister | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 4 2020 1:17 PM

Thanks. I preordered because of your post.

Posts 5422
DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 5 2020 4:50 AM

My view on these things is not to be ageist. The fact it is from 28 years ago does not make it irrelevant and if you are seeing it regularly referred to that inplies It is relevant reading today. Newer doesn‘t automatically mean better just as older doesn’t automatically mean irrelevant. 

 

Posts 1353
Paul Caneparo | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 5 2020 5:44 AM

DIsciple II:

My view on these things is not to be ageist. The fact it is from 28 years ago does not make it irrelevant and if you are seeing it regularly referred to that inplies It is relevant reading today. Newer doesn‘t automatically mean better just as older doesn’t automatically mean irrelevant. 

 

I agree. Sometimes archeological findings add something new.

Posts 4082
Mattillo | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 5 2020 5:54 AM

I’m  super excited for this to be in digital. Like Paul I’ve seen it referred many times and I believe Heiser has quoted from it before... could be wrong though :)

Posts 5422
DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 5 2020 10:57 AM

Most certainly it is good to have access to most recent writings where archaeological data, including manuscripts  may add new insights. Which makes regular access to the latest journals important along with other resources.

Paul Caneparo:

DIsciple II:

My view on these things is not to be ageist. The fact it is from 28 years ago does not make it irrelevant and if you are seeing it regularly referred to that inplies It is relevant reading today. Newer doesn‘t automatically mean better just as older doesn’t automatically mean irrelevant. 

 

I agree. Sometimes archeological findings add something new.

Posts 538
Bobby Terhune | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 5 2020 11:57 AM

This is his Bio,

Clinton E. Arnold is Professor and Chairman of the Department of New Testament at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University. He holds a Ph.D. degree in New Testament Exegesis from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. He is regarded as evangelicalism's leading authority on spiritual warfare. He has also written Crucial Questions about Spiritual Warfare, The Colossian Syncretism: The Interface between Christianity and Folk Belief at Colossae and Powers of Darkness: Principalities and Powers in Paul's Letters.

I don't know of anyone writing in this area that has superseded Dr. Arnold's knowledge in the area of Spirtual Warfare. His book in the Crucial Questions series is very informative about different kinds of current Strategic Level Spiritulal Warefare (SLSW) being practiced today.

Here is a section of chapter 3.

"Description of the Strategy

In describing the distinctive traits of SLSW, I focus primarily on Wagner’s articulation of the strategy because he has become the principal and most influential spokesperson for the approach. Without the publication of his many books on the topic, there would be little awareness of “Strategic-Level Spiritual Warfare.” I have come to realize, however, that there really are a variety of strategies even within the SWN and that it is not correct to speak of one uniform strategic-level spiritual warfare method. Although it may not be readily apparent in the literature, some would disagree with Wagner on certain aspects of the strategy, emphasizing certain parts to the minimization or exclusion of other parts.
At the heart of SLSW is a threefold approach: (1) discern the territorial spirits assigned to the city, (2) deal with the corporate sin of a city or area, and (3) engage in aggressive “warfare prayer” against the territorial spirits. I describe each of these facets of the strategy in turn.
  1. Discern the Territorial Spirits Assigned to a City This aspect of the method, of course, assumes not only the reality of hostile supernatural beings intent on hindering the progress of the gospel, but it also assumes a demonic hierarchy with powers of greater and lesser rank having specific geographical assignments.
Most Christians would have no problem affirming the reality of Satan and demons. Not to do so entails a conscious or unconscious acceptance of a hermeneutic influenced by an a priori scientific naturalism. The concept of hostile angels associated with territories also has biblical support in Daniel 10:13, 20, 21, which speaks of a “prince of Persia” and a “prince of Greece” struggling in heaven with the angel Michael, one of the “chief princes” of the heavenly host.
Wagner contends that it is crucial to learn the names and nature of the assignments of the demonic princes over a given area as a first step in this kind of spiritual warfare. He cites the example of Resistencia, Argentina. He claims that “one of the keys to the substantial evangelistic results in the city of Resistencia was naming the spirits over that city: Pombero, Curupí, San La Muerte, Reina del Cielo, witchcraft, and Freemasonry.” In a more recent discussion of SLSW, he reaffirmed how important it had been to discern the names of these six spirits as part of the strategy. Other Christian workers have emphasized the naming of the powers as well. Pastor and evangelist Larry Lea describes how he asks God to show him the enemy forces at work in the particular town or church in which he is ministering. Similarly, John Dawson, international director of urban missions for Youth With A Mission, relates how he asked the Lord for discernment regarding the “strong man” or territorial spirit over Amazonas and Manaus in Brazil prior to a time of ministry there. In contrast to Wagner, Dawson contends that “getting the exact name of demons at any level is not necessary, but it is important to be aware of the specific nature or type of oppression.” In the prescriptive section of Warfare Prayer, Wagner instructs his readers as follows: “To the degree possible, the intercessors should seek to know the names, either functional or proper, of the principalities assigned to the city as a whole and to various geographical, social or cultural segments of the city.” In his most recent book, Wagner reiterates the importance: “Effective spiritual warfare does not require knowing the names of the spirits, but experience has shown that when we are able to identify them specifically by name, we seem to have more authority over them, and therefore we can be more effective.”
This is where the concept of spiritual mapping comes in. This expression was coined by George Otis Jr., president of the Sentinel Group and coordinator with Wagner of the AD 2000 & Beyond Movement’s United Prayer Track, where he heads the spiritual mapping division. He defines spiritual mapping as “superimposing our understanding of forces and events in the spiritual domain onto places and circumstances in the material world.” By this he means discerning what is happening in the spiritual realm that keeps people from responding to the light of the gospel. His concept of spiritual mapping amounts to engaging in detailed research on the religious history of a city or country. He seeks to uncover not only the official religious background, but also the folk beliefs and practices. His research is based on the assumption that malevolent spirits are behind these other religious beliefs and practices and are using them to blind people to the gospel. The first fruits of this kind of research have recently been published in a volume titled Strongholds of the 10/40 Window. Unlike Wagner, Otis does not suggest that intercessors need to discern the names of the spirits. He is more concerned to uncover the nature of their deception in its varied manifestations from place to place.
It is also important to observe that Otis does not advocate “mapping” in the sense of drawing lines on a map from one religious or occultic center to another as a means of detecting demonic corridors of power. This is a principle that some in the SWN give credence to (including Wagner), but it does not represent what most in the SWN are doing.
Posts 41
Angela Meister | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 7 2020 12:33 PM

We don't need to over-complicate things. Simple prayer like a child in faith to our Father in heaven. If you want to pray for an area, just pray for the people in the area. 

There are some odd things going on with "spiritual warfare" these days with people who don't even have a handle on the basics of scripture or are doing "Jesus plus" type theology.

We need to stay focused on what God has told us in the bible. 

Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’” Matthew 7:22-23

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