Last weekend Craig and I saw the band Blackberry Smoke at Black Oak Amp outdoor ampitheater.
We’ve only recently discovered this awesome outdoor venue only 10 minutes from our homestead (which is pretty crazy since we are out in the country in the middle of nowhere). It’s a medium sized ampitheater, room for around 9000 at full capacity, seats in the front, and a steep grassy lawn area filled with lots of table rock outcroppings to sit on, in the middle of the lush ozark mountains. The sun sets behind the stage area so concert goers are treated to a double-show every night.
This particular show was a small one, about a thousand people or so, seated area only, no one on the lawn. We got there early to avoid the lines and people watched as the seats filled up around us. It was an older southern rock crowd, mostly 50s and 60s, lots of grey haired folks in jeans and black concert tees… a little rough around the edges perhaps, but good-hearted, decent, unpretentious people. Our kind of crowd. The mood was relaxed, jovial, peaceful. Everyone was looking forward to a good show.
The atmosphere shifted when they sat down in front of us. He was 50 something, small build, jean jacket and ball cap, his medium length greyish beard pulled into two short tight ponytails. She was dressed rockabilly style with loud glasses, short black-dyed poofy hair pulled back by a red bandanna. She was talkative, smacking her gum. He was quiet, almost sullen, no eye contact with anyone. He was fidgety and uncomfortable but certainly not intimidating. Yet as he sat down in the seat directly in front of me, the air decidedly dropped a few degrees.
I quietly asked Craig if he felt the temperature change and he nodded and looked at me knowingly. I heard one word whisper in my spirit over and over again… “warlock.”
I knew this man had a demon.
I believe in demons; I’ve had too many encounters with them in my life not to. Jesus believed in them too and cast them out of people in every single village He visited. But I’m not one to assume there’s a demon behind every bush, like some people do. There were hundreds of people here and only this one man tripped my spirit radar.
Then I saw it. Two glowing green points of light emanating from the middle of his back. I have seen these before but only a handful of times in my life. I see them in my spirit; it isn’t something that most others would notice. But they are unmistakeable. Demon eyes. Before I have seen them staring forward out of the host person’s chest. These stared backward out of his back, straight at me.
My blood turned icy for a moment. I quickly began praying against it. In the name of Jesus, demon, I rebuke you. You have no authority here.
The man sat quietly, listening to his rockabilly girlfriend loudly speak and smack her gum, perhaps unaware that anything was even happening behind him. The glowing eyes flickered and shut. They flashed open a few times to glare at me during the show but always quickly shut again as I boldly called down the mighty Name of Jesus. I am not afraid of these things. It is wise to be aware but no need to be afraid. Greater is Jesus that is in me than this little green eyed demon who is in this man…
I hadn’t been that familiar with Blackberry Smoke before the concert. I had heard a few songs and liked them. This was Craig’s band. They are my new favorite band now. Wow what a fantastic show! Excellent musicianship, marvelous vocals, superb songs. Best of all was their personable easy rapport with the crowd. They seemed like very nice guys without the performer egos. I really enjoyed the show. They don’t market themselves as a Christian band but based on some of their lyrics and comments, I suspect they may be men of faith. I watched the man in front of me to see how he responded to them. He sat quietly in his seat, barely moving to the music. Occasionally rockabilly chick urged him onto his feet with the rest of us. He never clapped or smiled.
Toward the end of the show, the lights dimmed into deep blue. The lead singer stepped forward and started playing those so familiar notes on his guitar. Amazing grace how sweet the sound… The rest of the band joined in. They didn’t sing the lyrics, only played the beloved old tune. I stood to my feet and raised a hand as did many others.
The man in front of me grew noticeably agitated, squirming around in his seat and fiddling with his hands. I wondered if we were going to witness some sort of manifestation.
Then he abruptly stood up and walked quickly out of the arena, leaving his girlfriend to enjoy the end of the show alone. She didn’t seem to mind. Maybe she’s used to it?
We never saw him again.
There is no more powerful song of faith than Amazing Grace. Its verses clearly tell the truth of salvation, from a lost sinner through the sanctification process of life, to our hope in eternal glory. Demons must flee at the sound of it.
I tell you this with certainty, there IS an enemy who exists among us. Demons ARE real. But so is God. So is JESUS and so are all the multitudes of angelic armies who worship Him. We need never fear the enemy. Our God is so much more powerful. His grace keeps us safe. Our victory has already been won.