‘I Was Seeing Demons’: Ex-Satanist Almost Took His Own Life Before Christ Broke Through By Billy Hallowell for Faith Wire
“I found myself giving myself to Satan.”
That’s not an admission one would expect to hear from a preacher, but Ben Atkins wasn’t always a believer. In fact, the U.K.-based pastor went through quite a harrowing journey — one that took him into the bowels of a Satanic worldview before he discovered hope in Christ.
“This is my story. These are my experiences,” Atkins recently said on “The Playing With Fire” podcast, noting his story involves “supernatural things” and that he is careful not to go beyond what he experienced and what he sees in Scripture. “I’m quite hesitant to go beyond what the Bible says, what Jesus taught, and my experience. That’s really all I can share with any sort of authority.”
Atkins described growing up in a chaotic household that looked comfortable from the outside — a scenario he likened to the “English equivalent of the American Dream.” But beneath the surface was a lot of trauma and distress, leaving him “questioning everything” at an early age.
Despite being raised in a Christian environment, Atkins said his parents’ faith had begun to flicker. And with his experiences in the church becoming overtly negative, he began to turn away from belief.
“They had no place for suffering, no place for really vulnerability or weakness and much less for the supernatural power of God,” he said of his early years in the church. “It was a church that didn’t believe in the God at work today through anything other than the Bible, and so what I experienced in church just didn’t shine with life.”
A disenchanted Atkins started on his own path, diving into “sex, drugs, alcohol,” and other vices. Spiritually, he also began to experiment with non-Christian meditation and other such practices — all in an effort to find something he was so desperately desiring.