Reviewed by Craig M. Kibler, and reminds us that those battles continue.
The story’s theme, however, finds its true expression in the pastor who involved himself in what he called “the fight” to free Dittus.
Johann Christoph Blumhardt’s faith, as Zuendel tells us, was the central foundation of his life and provided him with the strength to join in the “demonic struggle.” That faith was “his belief in the reality of the age-old battle between good and evil, and in a Jesus who was not only an historical figure, but a living reality whose cosmic power can be felt and experienced still today.”
This 19th century event in Germany illuminates how ordinary people are caught up in such spiritual struggles. Dittus, regarded as a “God-fearing” young woman, had suffered nervous disorders and seizures all her life, as later did her sister Katharina.
For two long years, through intense prayer and “terrifyingly real dialogues with demons that spoke through” the suffering young women, Blumhardt fought against the forces of evil. At long last, the forces of good prevailed and the demons – shrieking “Jesus is the victor! Jesus is the victor!” – departed, and both young women were restored to health.
The Awakening is the story of profound faith, of a foundation built upon Jesus Christ, and the hope that such a spiritual awakening can lead us all through our own battles of faith.