Generals International posted a new 10 Minute Prayer School video on Leviathan, an alleged water demon and "territorial spirit" who distorts truth. "Our culture is stalked by a territorial spirit that works to twist, undermine and otherwise pervert the truth. This spirit, known as the Leviathan spirit (Job 41), is usually cloaked in deception and often at the root of many kinds of division and strife," the video's description claims. The video is jarring not only because of its superstitious statements about demons, but because of its insensitive racial content.
"I have seen this spirit tearing up so many people's lives that I just really feel from the Lord that I should teach it," says Cindy Jacons at the 0:25 mark. Jacobs proceeded to describe the nature and effects of Leviathan's alleged presence at the 1:28 mark, which she linked with worship of serpent and crocodile deities.
"I'm convinced it's the cause of divorce, tribal wars, church splits, family feuds, sibling rivalries, ministries breaking up. It is more responsible, I believe, than any other spirit ... This spirit is particularly active where there's been some kind of worship, the crocodile worship of the serpent. We know many animists that, water spirits. Leviathan is a water serpent. Particularly active will be when you live near bodies of water. Many cultures actually release water spirits into their waterways. We see this in Japan, for instance. Of course I mentioned Africa where they actually worship water spirits such as the crocodile."
At the 2:33 mark, Jacobs claimed that people with Native American ancestors need to "repent for the sin of animism" perpetrated by their forefathers, lest Leviathan prove active in their bloodline.
"If you have in your bloodline any animists, any Native American blood, for instance. Not all Native Americans worshipped the serpent or crocodile. Many did, but you might want to renounce that and repent for that generational iniquity. If you are--perhaps you're Mexican and you might have indigenous blood in you, or Mayan blood, those who have Aztec blood anyway--you need to repent for the sin of animism before you begin to deal with this spirit, because it'll be very active in your bloodline. We know that some of the totem poles, even in the north of America in the Virginias and places like that, would have a crocodile in their totem poles, so if in the totems, there is a crocodile spirit, you can say that there could be a very strong spirit of the Leviathan operating in that area if it has not been dealt with as a territorial spirit."
Where do I begin? I'm stunned, as usual, that Jacobs actually believes in demons and "territorial spirits", and encourages others to see the world through her superstitious lens as well. I'm disappointed, again, that Jacobs has made an off-the-wall comment about indigenous people and Hispanics.
Sadly, this is not the first time a New Apostolic Reformation preacher has said something outrageous about race. Jacobs accused ancient Native Americans of "defiling" land through abominable practices in a 2011 segment of God Knows. Lou Engle has tried to make reproductive rights and racist oppression morally equivalent by using the term "shedding of innocent blood" to refer to both racial injustice and abortion and likening abortion to the Native American "Trail of Tears". At Firestorm 2011, Engle encouraged Hispanics to have children to resist abortion and oppression. Engle's comments about slavery during a 2011 conference call appalled many people. Both Engle and Jacobs made offensive and surreal claims about Hispanics and the indigenous people of the Americans at TheCall Aviva in 2012. Despite the New Apostolic Reformation's outreach to communities of color, two of its most prominent preachers remain oblivious to what actual respect for different races and ethnic groups looks like.
Nor is this phenomenon limited to New Apostolic Reformation figures. The American anti-abortion movement has painted abortion as a threat to communities of color, ignoring the fact that they are targeting reproductive health services that help women of color. Last year, Human Rights Campaign posted confidential documents from the National Organization for Marriage, outlining NOM's misguided plan to use people of color to create a wedge in the Democratic party. Australian Religious Right figures have appropriated the language of the Aboriginal "stolen generation" to oppose LGBTQ equality. Too many Religious Right figures seem to see people of color as tools or symbols rather than people.
Religious Right leaders need to think before they speak. There is no reason to use this kind of insensitive, tone-deaf language about people of color.
(Hat tip to Right Wing Watch)
Oh, and while we're on the topic of crocodiles . . .