Book review: Three Books on Spiritual Warfare (Past, Present and Future)

It’s likely that you’ve noticed the accelerating decline in morality and behavior in recent times.  People doing things that are so foul and evil that it’s hard to believe there isn’t something pushing them along (though human sin nature and the world system are powerful elements in the mix).  You may wonder if evil supernatural forces are involved.

The Bible describes the spiritual war waged in the past (from the days of Adam and Eve through the early days of Christianity) when these evil spirits were worshipped as pagan gods.  The war continues in the present (e.g., the apostle Paul warns in Ephesians 6 about this battle and how we need to “armor up”).  The Bible’s many end times prophesies describe how this battle will reach its pinnacle and conclusion in the future events (see Revelation).

Satan leads a horde of demonic spirits (fallen angels) against God and his army of faithful angels.  People are participants (on one side or the other) in the spiritual war and are sought by both sides.  As the Western nations are turning their backs on God and the Christian church has withered, the dark forces seek to take advantage and strengthen their position.  If you are a faithful “watchman,” you are observing the signs of this.  I think we are reaching a critical point of intersection for the “Supply of Sin” and the “Demand for Salvation,” a tipping point when this battle moves from the present phase to the future.

Three books about spiritual warfare “coincidentally” crossed my reading path within a short period, thanks to book-release schedules, friend recommendations and library hold-request fulfillment.  These are “Spiritual Warfare in the End Times” by Ron Rhodes, “Return of the Gods” by Jonathan Cahn, and “Daniel’s Final Week” by Donna VanLiere.  With a smile, I note the connections between these three authors and the characters in my own end times novel “Twilight of the Church Age,” who lead the effort to produce a resource to help those who will be left behind after the rapture.  Pastors and authors and Messianic Rabbis, oh my!

I recommend all three books for your reading.  These will help you better understand the enemies we face in this battle, how you may be attacked and how to resist them (key tactics- stay close to Jesus and be faithful in Bible reading and prayer).  All three books cover all these subjects, with different levels of emphasis in different aspects.  Here’s my summary of their levels of emphasis (1 highest, 3 least) with some close calls required :

  Spiritual Warfare in the PastSpiritual Warfare in our PresentSpiritual Warfare in the Future
Spiritual Warfare in the End Times312
Daniel’s Final Week321
The Return of the Gods123

I would recommend “Spiritual Warfare in the End Times” as the one to read first.  If you want to buy just one of the three, I’d pick this one.  It’s a general workhorse for the subject, easy to read and provides practical recommendations for taking part in this spiritual war.  It is a good reference book on the subject and would be helpful when you read the other two books.

All three books were available from my county public library and available at reasonable prices at Amazon.  All are reasonably-sized and clearly written.  Here is a quick description of each book:

“Spiritual Warfare in the End Times” by Ron Rhodes (2020).  Ron Rhodes is a well-known Christian author and speaker, covering a wide range of topics.  I’ve read his books about Bible Prophecy, but the many other titles sound interesting.  This book especially focuses on the present phase of this spiritual war and is loaded with scripture references and quotes from other authors and theologians.  It goes on to describe how the warfare becomes more intense in the future.  It’s both interesting and useful.

“Daniel’s Final Week” by NY Times bestselling author Donna VanLiere (2022) is the final novel in a trilogy that dramatizes the future rapture and tribulation, using fiction to demonstrate the prophecies of the Bible.  If you’ve already read the first two novels in that series, you’ll probably want to read this one after the Rhodes book, so you can see “how the story ends.”  The book is a two-fer.  The first 222 pages are the novel and the last 52 pages are called “Where in the Word,” where the author explains the Bible passages that underly the novel and provides encouragement for believers.  The three novels describe the horrors of the tribulation, so they fictionally depict horrific events.  Because this novel covers the last part of the tribulation, demonic forces are very prominent.  I think both parts of the book are well-done and the novel shows that you would not want to be left behind after the rapture.

“The Return of the Gods” by Jonathan Cahn (2022).  If you read Cahn’s two “Harbinger” books, you’ll likely want to read this one next (after the Rhodes book).  It’s separate from his earlier series and does use a fictional storyline to deliver the message.  This book goes deepest into the attributes of the demonic spirits that were worshipped as “gods” during the past.  It describes how they were pushed aside during the rise of Christianity (but still lurked around the world) and how they are returning with a vengeance in the present period.  The book incorporates scholarly research and passages from scripture.  The last 20 pages of the book describe the future battle between evil and God, from the Bible’s end times prophecies.  In the last pages of his book, Cahn describes the path to enlist in the right side for this war- through a life-giving relationship with Jesus.

God will win the war.  Jesus will completely vanquish these pagan “gods” and those who follow them.  Unfortunately, most of the people living on earth in the future period choose the wrong side in the war (as do most in the present and past eras).  They are burdened by sin, tempted by the world system, and tricked or coerced by these evil spirits to join the forces of Satan.  I encourage you to read these books to understand this battle and so you will enlist on the winning side with Jesus as your Savior, King and Commander-in-Chief.

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