Spiritual Warfare in Iglesia Bautista del Septimo Dia Puerto Rico

Spiritual Warfare in Iglesia Bautista del Septimo Dia Puerto Rico

Oct 28, 2015

by Pastor Joel A. Houts

Youth Pastor, Iglesia Bautista del Septimo Dia PR

The second annual youth camp of the Agape Ministry Iglesia Bautista del Septimo Dia in Puerto Rico (Seventh Day Baptist Church in Hoyamala, San Sebastian, Puerto Rico) was held July 13-18, 2015. There were lots of great moments, but the highlight came on Thursday evening, July 16, when we saw the Holy Spirit move and take back His territory and His people.

All week until then, there had been spiritual struggle. The camp cook brought her sons and their behavior deteriorated as the week went on, bringing a spirit of confusion and frustration into the camp. Adding to this situation, some of the adults helping with the camp were unable to stick to the schedule or to provide needed support. The arts and crafts director (from a neighboring church) harshly criticized one camper’s efforts to the point of creating hurting feelings and disappointment. Some campers were listless and rebellious — almost defiant. One camper in particular (Wills) was disaffected and began repeating “I want to go home” as early as Tuesday. His behavior began to affect the other campers as the week went on.

Tuesday night, July 14, was a great spirit-filled evening service where youth ministered to youth and were in turn ministered to by adults. The speaker laid hands and prayed, ministered, and prophesied over the youth. But by Wednesday afternoon, the disorganization and rebellion were creeping back into the camp. Wills again stated his desire to go home and was starting to try to recruit other youth to leave the camp. The situation continued as a sort of tug-of-war between organization and chaos until Thursday evening.

One of the youth, Ricardo, had stated before camp that he wanted to get baptized and that celebration was scheduled for Sabbath morning service. But, with the inability of the Berlin, NY, team to be present, and with the struggle going on, a last- minute change was made and the decision taken to baptize Ricardo Friday morning.

When the Thursday evening meal was bordering on chaos, Pastora Judith felt in her spirit that Satan was getting hold of the campgrounds and of some of the campers. As she quietly prayed for wisdom, she was able to discern a whirlwind of destruction and mockery. Immediately she got hold of Ricardo and told him that his baptism was going to be in minutes. She asked brother Craig Mosher (he was going to help with the baptism the next day) to get into the pool immediately. Without any hesitation he did and she followed. Immediately Ricardo followed. She announced that in order to kick Satan in the teeth, we were going to baptize Ricardo that night — that moment. The mood changed. Peace came over the dining area, over the campers, over the leaders, over the missionaries helping out. The Pastora had gotten their attention and so had God. As Ricardo’s baptism was completed, Pastora asked if there was anyone else that felt led to get baptized. There was calm; there was a never-felt peace near the pool. Pastora explained it as if the Lord Himself got in the water with her. Immediately a young lady came forward crying, “Dei.” She said she wanted to get baptized, then Erick came forward stating that he too wanted to get baptized and then Justin, the 10 year old boy and first attendee of the church three years ago. Then came the moment the Pastora was waiting anxiously for, Wills (the young man being used by Satan to help him bring chaos into the camp) came over and told the Pastora, “I caused all these problems all week long just to end up under the water; I too want to be baptized.”

As Wills went under, we could all sense a “second wave of the Holy Spirit,” a lifting of a heaviness, and a sense of peace and complete order being restored. In all, five young men and women were baptized: Ricardo, Justin, Dei, Wills, and Erick. Needless to say, the atmosphere from that moment on was one of cooperation and enlightened peace. The dramatic change in the mood was not lost on the youth. We want to focus on Wills’ response to the events of the week: “All this, just to end up being baptized.” It is called “God’s everlasting love.”

As the 2015 Youth Camp came to an end, the church membership had grown by three new members. Two of the newly baptized are still taking discipleship classes and hopefully they too will join the church — among them is Wills.

To God, indeed, belongs the victory, the glory, and honor. Praise His name.

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