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Dancing with the Devil: An Honest Look Into the Occult from Former Followers Paperback – 4 Sep 2012
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""Dancing With the Devil" is far more than just intriguing true-life stories; it is a manual on how to break free from demonic chains and how to help others find true freedom through Christ. It is a must-read for anyone trapped on the dark side and for everyone desiring to rescue others from the shadows." --Delron Shirley, former dean, Indiana Christian University, Noblesville, IN "Powerful and eye opening to the kingdom of darkness. Every Christian should read this book. We are in a real warfare, and over half of God's army is asleep." --Cody Gunderson, senior pastor, Yosemite Lakes Community Church, Coarsegold, CA "The occult in all its various disguises is causing havoc around the world. Jeff Harshbarger is not just a talker; he has been there and knows what others are going through. This book should be a message of hope to the thousands who are looking for a way out, because it will show them they are not alone." --Doug Harris, Reachout Trust, Surrey, England, UK "One of the most difficult aspects of being a missionary to cults and false religious movements is the resentment they have for Christians who communicate false information about their beliefs. This is most true in the area of Satanism and the occult. I have appreciated Jeff's ministry, and "Dancing With the Devil "is a helpful tool in educating Christians about the beliefs of those with these worldviews." --LL (Don) Veinot Jr., president, Midwest Christian Outreach, Inc., Wonder Lake, IL "Jeff Harshbarger's "Dancing With the Devil "is a unique approach to understanding occultism from a Christian point of view. If you are dealing with occult-related issues--either in your own life or the lives of others--this book needs to be in your library." --Brooks Alexander, author of Witchcraft Goes Mainstream and founder of Spiritual Counterfeits Project, Berkeley, CA ""Dancing With the Devil "will touch your heart with compassion for those caught in the world of the occult and enrich your mind with the knowledge
About the Author
Jeff Harshbarger is the founding president of Refuge Ministries, an outreach he began upon leaving Satanism to provide assistance to people escaping the occult. An ordained minister, he has master's degrees in youth ministry and Christian counseling and is the author of "From Darkness to Light."
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Mr. Harshbarger, a former Satanist, compiled a collection of true stories telling what led the person into the occult; the torment & terror, bondage, depression, isolation, fear, & in some cases suicidal ideation due to hopelessness that occured as the person delved deeper into the occult; & what made the occultist decide to leave & how the occultist made his/her way to Jesus Christ who was this person's only hope of salvation.
This book is also designed to inform the Christian on ways to tactfully introduce this person to Christ & dispel the fear of meeting & greeting this person. While the gospel message is in no way to be compromised, there is no one model used to introduce a person to Christ. It is important to know that most occultists are law abiding citizens who merge into mainstream society & never impose their beliefs on anyone. It is important not to go rushing in preaching condemnation & punishment of sin with hellfire & damnation. Also pointing out that their beliefs are wrong because the Bible says so will fall on deaf ears. It is important to be prayed up & led of the Holy Spirit. The Christian needs to reach out & first be a friend, reach out a helping hand if needed, listen to what the person is saying, & win their trust & let the occultist come to you with his/her need when the time is right & then you can lead this person to Christ. Once the person leaves the occult, it is going to take a long time to heal from the emotional & spiritual scars so threre are going to be additional needs that must be met. Christians cannot just leave the new converts to find their own way. These new converts are going to need your continued friendship & your gentle guidance all the more because they have given up their old life, beliefs, & friends-everything.
This book was very believable & credible. I would recommend this book to a teenager as well as to an adult-anyone that can read on a high school level. The stories came from a variety of practitioners such as Satanists, Wiccans, Pagans, Spiritists, & a Psychic Vampire so the reader gets to learn a few quick facts about different facets of beliefs & practices without too much sensationalism. This is one of my favorite books.
Also, the author welcomes questions from anyone trying to get out of the occult or anyone trying to help them at : email@example.com.
Here Jeff has collected the real life-experiences of a variety of now-Christians, who each in their own way followed paths into the Occult. No less than 10 examples are offered, in their own words - each describing what was their childhood, what drew them to the spiritual world, what were the effects and practices, and what ultimately was able to save them from the spiritual oppression - namely, the Demonic.
Jeff recounts again his own story and in this version I found more details of inner turmoil, more details about his own thoughts. These are helpful insights into why people turn to (evil) spiritualism. This book serves as an enlightening catalogue of how Demons entice us, lure us and ultimately entrap humans. There are common themes that emerge and are once again helpful to note: anger, feeling unwanted, not fitting in, seeking power, hearing voices, cutting and mental illness...
I am thankful this book helps to dispel the common stereotypes offered by Hollywood concerning the Demonic, and
rightly places all the salvation into the hands of Jesus Christ. And just like addicts who recover, the process is not often smooth or short-lived. (I do offer a caution though, because it appears that those who once sought out the magical/spiritual experiences of the occult, often seem drawn to the experiential ecstatic worship of Charismatic churches - and their particular bent and past addiction may keep them from seeing that many so-called churches are hiding demonic influence in plain sight.)
I would even suggest to the author/compiler of the book that he rename and repackage it somewhat in a future printing, keeping "formerly entitled Dancing with the Devil" in smaller print somewhere on the cover so people don't accidentally purchase it thinking it is a different book. Had it been called something slightly less menacing, such as "Dancing with the Dark" and had less menacing cover design, I would not only have read it more quickly but I would feel freer to buy it as a gift to give to others who would surely benefit from this wonderful book...!