The founder of a satanic church in Texas who converted to Christianity has opened up about his former life, revealing he was once "mired in the shadows of the adversarial influence".
Jacob McKelvy, formerly known as Jacob No, was once a devout satanist - even bringing together a group of "Luciferians" to form a Luciferian church.
McKelvy shared his testimony with CBN, revealing he turned to satanism after his sister died from a snakebite: "I was born and raised Mormon and so I understood what Jesus Christ was and what God was and if they took my sister away I was going to go to the dark side. There was a lot of hopelessness and feeling of powerlessness that drew me to this. When Luciferianism says that you are your own God, that's pretty powerful," he explained.
The church, Greater Church of Lucifer, opened in 2015.
"It was a quest for power, McKelvy told CBN. "I wasn't expecting the Greater Church of Lucifer to be as big as it was. It originally started in my garage."
While many Christians protested the church opening, one pastor - Robert Hogan of Spring First Church - encouraged his church to pray instead.
"I'm not going to be down there picketing," Hogan told his church from the pulpit. "And could I tell you something: would you not go down there picketing? If you want to picket it, picket it on your knees," he said.
Then, something amazing happened: in August of 2016, McKelvy walked into Spring First Church and asked to meet with Pastor Hogan.
"I had this burning sensation to go in that church, so I did," McKelvy said. "Robert wasn't there that day but he called me back. We talked on the phone two hours and then we set an interview for August 11th and we talked for 4 hours that day and I ended up giving my life over to Christ."
In February of this year, McKelvy and his wife were baptized and officially renounced their ties with the Luciferian Church.
"...(W)e were once covered in darkness and bound to each other in Luciferian covenant," McKelvy said during a service at Spring First Church in Houston. "We were mired in the shadows of the adversarial influence and knew no love outside of each other. Today I rebuke, denounce and break the satanic covenant by the blood of Jesus."
Pastor Hogan said he is working very closely with McKelvy to make sure that he has a solid foundation and that he becomes rooted and grounded in the word of God. The Greater Church of Lucifer has since closed its doors.
Today, McKelvy openly shares his story and hopes it will remind others that Jesus is powerful enough to save even the worst of sinners.
"No matter how far away from God you think you are. There is always a way home," he said.
He added, "The power and peace and wholeness I feel today is far greater than anything that I've ever felt before. I created a church to destroy dogmatic religion and he still loved me. So if he could still love me for me to be here today talking to you than there are no excuses anymore."
Last year, The Gospel Herald shared the story of John Ramirez, a man who converted from Santeria to Christianity and now offers "supernatural bootcamps" to help Christians arm themselves against the forces of darkness.
"At the clubs, I would go around looking for Christians," he said of his time as a satanist. "And I knew that in the club you were in the devil's playground. So I knew that if I could get into you and you had a beer or two already in your system, I knew all I had to do was just say, 'Listen, I have something to tell you today.' And right now you will open the door up and say, 'What is it you need to tell me?' You gave me the gateway."
Following years of devil-worship, Ramirez found himself at a crossroad between darkness and light. Confused and miserable, he contemplated suicide. However, after experiencing a strange dream in which Jesus overpowered the devil, Ramirez accepted Christ and turned from his former ways.
"I've been victorious in Christ," he said. "I've got peace. I'm not empty anymore. I've got fulfillment. I've got a purpose and I have a destiny today, and all because I said 'yes' to the cross. Now I'm an evangelist for the Kingdom of Light. No more an evangelist for the dark side. I expose the dark side every time the Lord gives me a chance, because you don't have to die in your sins. You don't have to shed blood... Jesus shed the blood for you. That's the blood that counts, the one at the cross."