To be honest it would be really cool if out beyond the limits of our understanding of the universe in which we live there really were star destroyers flying around the place bombarding planets, and people shooting each other with laser weapons. However in the end we simply don't know and are stuck with speculation and science-fiction. The problem is that, for a period at least, people were questioning and wondering about strange lights that would be seen in the sky, and 'documentaries' about alien abductions would regularly appear on television. For most of my younger days I was also fascinated with the whole UFO phenomena, but then again I was, and still am, fascinated with the science-fiction and fantasy genre in general.
I have had a browse through a number of the books that Ankerberg and Weldon have written, and I suspect that these pocket sized books can be quite useful to warn us against the various cults that exist out there to try to lure us in and then control us. I believe that the truth behind many of these cults needs to be exposed (and I won't name any here because I don't necessarily want to point the finger at anybody in particular at this stage). However, while these books are useful in warning us against the dangers of getting involved in a cult (namely because once you join it is difficult, if not impossible, to escape) the problem is that the people who end up reading these books tend to be restricted to Christians. In reality, if one is a regular church goer who browses the cult section of the church bookshop (they don't seem to have libraries, do they?) one is probably not in danger of getting caught up in a cult.
I suspect that this book has a similar purpose. The one thing that I remember from it is how Ankerberg tends to connect the UFO phenomena and sightings with occultic practices; namely he says (and I do question his evidence on this) that everybody who has a UFO experience has been involved in the occult. Look, the truth is that many of us, especially in our younger days, have probably dabbled in the occult, and in a way we probably still do if we read our daily horoscopes. However I do question Ankerberg's sweeping allegations that are not really supported by evidence. Many people have had UFO experiences, but I wonder if every one of these people have ever been a member of the occult, and by saying that I do not mean that they they had a séance with some friends, but that they regularly attend occult meetings.
Look, I am not one to laugh at the whole idea of the occult. I believe in Satan and I believe that he still has power in this world, especially if you allow him to have power over your life. Some people have scoffed at the idea of 'selling your soul to Satan' because they say that unless you are a Christian Satan already owns your soul. That may be the case, but I still suspect that there are several layers to this. There are many secularists out there that Satan is more than happy to simply let them believe that he does not exist, while there are those, like Dr Faust, whom he follows around constantly and they are always aware of his presence. Then there are the Christians who believe that everything that does not come out of their church is demonic.
Look, these books may serve well to warn people of the dangers of getting involved in these groups. UFO appreciation societies can probably be just as dangerous as regularly attending a black mass, however being a member of a roleplaying club is, to me, not actually participating in the occult, but rather simply spending a Saturday afternoon enjoying the company of friends and doing something that we all enjoy.
What concerns me about these books is that it is what I call fear-mongering. By generating a fear of demons, and in turn a fear of hell, forces gullible people (and there are an awful lot out there) to run into the arms of devious people who they put their trust in, and are then exploited by these people. In the end, the average evangelical church can be just as dangerous as being a member of one of Ankerberg's cults. The reason being is that by being a member of one of these churches you can quickly lose touch with many of the other people you used to associate with (which can be both good and bad), and then, suddenly, you wake up one morning to discover that these people are your only friends: and thus you are trapped. Look, I do tend to find Christians more trustworthy that others, and do tend to be better company, but you do need to be aware that even among the Christian church there are many wolves that simply want to imprison you and control you, and you need to identify and treat these people with caution. I don't necessarily mean to expose them, because sometimes it can backfire badly, and also that they will eventually expose themselves.
What I mean is that for those of us who are Christian we need to remember the saying of Jesus where he says that everybody who calls him Lord is not necessarily one of his children, and there are many who will appear before him and be sent off, being told that he never knew them. Instead of exposing and attacking these people we should treat them as we treat everybody else, with love and consideration, but we also need to be shrewd as well, not letting them get their claws into us so that we wake up one day to discover that we are their slave.