Posts Tagged ‘principalities’

Serious Alignment

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might!” (Ephesians 6:10)

Thought for Today: “Becoming Armed and Dangerous”

The Apostle Paul makes it clear that we have been given supernatural tools for warring against spiritual forces (Eph. 6:13-18). He first says, “put on the whole armor of God so that you can stand against the wiles of the devil” (Eph 6:11). We find ourselves wrestling with principalities and powers, rulers of darkness and spiritual hosts of wickedness in heavenly places. I believe we can be armed and dangerous. We can be equipped, shod and gird about with the most impressive sounding weapons God has in His arsenal, but it all works through prayer and fasting. Praying, watching and persevering with all kinds of prayers.

Not by Human Might:

We are ambassadors of Christ with amazing potential to do exploits and achieve the impossible things Jesus did, but it only happens with the help of the Holy Spirit (Zech 4:6). You see, we are battling invisible forces. Spiritual enemies that cannot be seen with our natural eyes. We can see the effects, but never get to the source of the real battle unless we are trained through prayer and fasting.

The Apostle’s Boldness:

Notice how the Apostle Paul writes these words to the Church in Ephesus while he was in prison, saying “I am an ambassador in chains”. He is making the point that his warfare is not fought in the flesh, but in the spiritual realm (Eph 3:10). His boldness was based upon an awareness that God’s grace was flowing through his life (Eph 3:8). Being armed does not necessarily make us dangerous to the devil, unless we are trained in the use of the weapons of our warfare… trained in prayer and sharpened by fasting.

Delegated Authority:

Its all about knowing who you represent! God has chosen you, called you by name and He will work in and through you… but your standard of training is up to you. Jesus was always calling His disciples up higher! He lived with them and taught as one holding the authority, but in a new season, new skills are needed. In John 15 a new season was about to begin. They would no longer be called “servants”. They would begin to discover what their Master was doing (Jn 15:15). As servants, they followed according to commands, but as “friends” they would follow the “heart” of their Master. Jesus was now shifting the relationship, deepening the responsibility and trusting that they would begin to live from what they understood – heart to heart. Friends discover the secrets that give them an advantage in how they walk together. Jesus wanted His disciples to achieve victory in every area of their spiritual journey. Knowing the heart of God is a key to real spiritual trained and impact in the spiritual battles we face. When we know the heart of our friend Jesus, we are able to carry our delegated authority into any challenge. One of the greatest spiritual truths is that your authority gets established through your intimacy with God.

Representing Heaven on Earth:

Becoming a dangerous threat to the devil means you will need some serious alignment with heaven. You are an ambassador for the Kingdom of God… you must represent heaven on earth in a way that makes the devil nervous and demons flee. That is what prayer and fasting will produce in you… the capacity to be armed and dangerous.

Submit to God (through prayer), resist the devil (through fasting) and he will flee from you (Jms 4:7).

The Warrior’s Focus

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.” (Eph. 6:10-16)

3 Directions of the Warrior’s Focus in Spiritual WarfareFocus is Identity!
* 1st) Focus upon God’s Mighty Power!
* 2nd) Focus upon God’s Mighty Armor!
* 3rd) Focus upon God’s Supreme Authority!

The way you see spiritual warfare matters. I pray that you experience a boost in your faith today, as you meditate on these principles from God’s Word. Your focus will be the determining factor in your outcome… it will define how you fight, how you identify yourself in the midst of spiritual struggles and how you stand!

1. The Enemy Flees Away from You – You are designed to occupy and rule spiritual territory!

  • ‘Five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall by the sword before you.’ (Lev 26:8)

This is the Biblical direction of spiritual warfare: the enemy is at a disadvantage! He is fleeing before you… so where is your focus? We see it in the Old Testament, when God’s people were walking in obedience to Him, no enemy could stand before them.

  • ‘The Lord will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.’ (Deut 28:7)

This is the outcome of the blessed life and the warrior’s focus: as you resist, your enemies will flee. We must recognize our authority over the demonic realm.

  • ‘When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases’ (Luke 9:1)

Jesus has give you power and authority in His Name, over all the power of the enemy. Jesus’ disciples were able to cast out demons because they understood the focus of spiritual warfare and the goal as established in the Words of Jesus. And that was, that the enemy had to flee at their word! Notice this was not limited to the 12 Apostles… it was the unnamed seventy who returned rejoicing from a ministry trip saying amazing things… carrying testimonies of victory!

  • “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.” (Luke 10:17)

2. Spiritual Warfare Comes Against You – It gets personal!

  • ‘For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.’ (Eph 6:12)

Don’t be surprised at the feelings you get when attacked. Satan wants to intimidate you and to overwhelm you physically, emotionally and spiritually. It is going to get personal and we must recognize that the battle is the Lord’s, not ours. The Greek word translated “wrestle” contains the imagery of a contest between two warriors where each is trying to throw the other and it is won when the victor is able to hold his opponent down with his hand upon his neck. Ouch, that sounds brutal – and it is! Many times, spiritual warfare gets up close and personal. You may relate to this as you experience a spiritual wrestling match right now… for your life, family, job, ministry or destiny. We must endure hardship as soldiers, warriors and leaders in fellowship with the King of Glory! The Bible does not promise that you will never experience demonic attack, pressure or spiritual warfare. However, Scripture does make clear that you have the ability to resist. In fact, we are commanded by God to oppose the enemy’s attacks.

  • ‘Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith…’ (1 Peter 5:8-9a)
  • ‘Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.’ (James 4:7)

At times, the direction of spiritual warfare will be towards us, in our face and beyond our control; however, this reality is temporary! When the enemy comes against us, we can submit to God, resist the devil… and he must flee! What does it mean to ‘resist’? The Bible gives some clear instructions. Your action can result in a change of direction, for what the enemy means for evil God wants to release His “good” in it. The enemy who comes against you will find himself fleeing from you in seven directions.

  1. Be alert and recognize spiritual warfare when it arises (1 Peter 5:8)
  2. Submit to God (step into intimacy—listen and obey) (James 4:7)
  3. Don’t put up with spiritual warfare, step into an opposing position (James 4:7)
  4. Resisting means speaking—use Jesus’ Name (Luke 10:17)
  5. Have confidence in your authority, knowing that the enemy must flee as you continue to resist (1 Peter 5:8-9, James 4:7)

3. You Are the Victorious One: The Devil is Underneath Your Feet!

The ultimate end of spiritual warfare is for the enemy to be under your feet. The enemy being ‘under your feet’ speaks of defeat and subjugation (Joshua 10:24-25).

  • ‘The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.’ (Rom 16:20)

No matter what happens, there is hope! The promise of God is that ultimately every work of the enemy will fail (2 Tim 4:18). However, the enemy being ‘under our feet’ (in submission to, and defeated by us) is not something we have to wait for eternity to experience. Jesus said to His disciples: ‘I have given you authority’!

  • ‘I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.’ (Luke 10:19, also Psalm 91:13)

The Psalms of David can be your own Heavenly songs of rejoicing!

  • ‘I pursued my enemies and overtook them; I did not turn back till they were destroyed. I crushed them so that they could not rise; they fell beneath my feet.’ (Psalm 18:37-38)

Our Victory

“Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head. Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Rom 12:17-21)

Christ “spoiled principalities and powers” and triumphed over them. He overcame evil with good! Every believer shares this mighty conquest of Calvary to the full. Jesus has absolute command over the forces of evil and confers this authority to His disciples as He says, “Behold I give you authority… over all the power of the enemy” (Luke 10:19).

We have Already Won!

In Christ, your enemy is defeated. He has no power over you. As a matter of fact he cannot find you… “For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God” (Col 3:3). The only influence he has against us is that which he has stolen by deception or we have given by negligence.

Walk in His Authority:

We must not be drawn into lengthy ”fights” with the Devil, because he is more cunning than us in the ways of deception. We have been called to enforce Christ’s Victory! The enemy craves attention. He always wants to make a scene, so the focus is on him. Don’t indulge in his tantrums, but remember that you have the mind of Christ! You carry an anointing from the Holy Spirit and you know things revealed inside, in your “spirit man”. I want you to realize that you will win every battle -every time, when you rest in His victory. There is peace in the midst of every storm. Clothe yourself with Christ and do good, then your battle is won!

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience”. (Col 3:12)

Be Different:

Live today by the fruit of the Spirit. Don’t retaliate, don’t avenge, don’t hold a grudge, don’t get angry…trust the Holy Spirit’s anointing within you to give you the ability to respond with love. Re-present Christ in every situation. It will allow you to enjoy God’s favor and peace in your life… joy unspeakable and full of glory!

The Victory is Ours!

Stand As the Victor

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.” (Eph. 6:10-16)

When you look at the battlefield, you may be intimidated by the volume of enemies that have gathered to battle against you. You may look at your small sword and your well weathered armor and feel that the odds are against you… perhaps you see no chance of victory. However, you need to remember who stands at your side… The Victorious One!

When you see only yourself, and your skills and abilities… they will never be enough. But if you see the battle… the real battle of the spirit, with the Victor at your side: then all the authority and resources of heaven are within reach. Indeed, the battlefield will look completely different.

So today, do not place your trust in what you think you can do, but what the Victorious One has already done! Think about what He can do! Look and consider the strength of His mighty right hand, consider the passion of His heart toward you and stand up with His righteous indignation. He is against your foes and chooses to stand in holy and proven strength.

Know this – that the power of the enemy to defeat you lies in your own mind. So take your position, take every thought captive to the mind of Christ and know that you are His anointed vessel, favored and secure in His hands… nothing is impossible. This is just another opportunity to see His proven character on display. Victory is as much a “stance” as it is an activity!

Stand on that battlefield as the victor – “I have called you to be My valiant soldier!” says the Lord.

The Way of Escape

“Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” (1 Cor. 10:12-13)

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Eph. 6:10-12)

These two passages almost sound as though they contradict each other, but I have found them to be equally helpful in reaching God’s destiny for my life. I believe in these two important keys… first, to find the purpose for which God created you, and second, to fight for it in spite of all opposition. Abundant life is when you connect your passion with God’s purpose and know that God is receiving pleasure in the journey!

Throughout my life, I’ve had my fair share of heart-wrenching situations, including the loss of ministry vision, abandonment, rejection, and betrayal from those whom I thought were trustworthy friends. The list could go on and on. Each of those hard places tried to blind me and imprison me. Satan’s goal is always to keep me from defining Kingdom purpose and destiny. Yet each time, God broke in to offer the way of freedom. I have learned to trust that in trials and temptations, God will always set before us a way of escape so that we will not be overcome or abort the dream that He has for us. If you can recognize it, you will succeed!

Face Your Giants!

Every time you are face-to-face with a “giant” of opposition, you must decide whether you will allow God or the giant to define who you are… and the character of your heart! In recent months, the Lord has spoken to me several times about the story of David and Goliath. I’ve become intrigued with the fact that the name Goliath means “expose or reveal”. When the Philistine giant came against the Nation of Israel, Saul and his soldiers’ exposed their fear. They allowed words to get in their head and intimidate their hearts. At the same time, and with the same words… the courageous heart of a warrior was revealed in David. Stop and meditate on that for a moment.

Who we Really Are:

Life’s giants expose our hearts and character… revealing who we are. When we face crisis, trials or opposition, those circumstances either reveal and amplify the greatness of God within us, or expose our weakness. God wants us to see this stuff; and we need to see it if we ever hope to overcome the world and its intimidating ruler, the devil. He is a liar and thief, but his ultimate aim is to rob us of the Glory of God.

The Good News:

The way of escape is a two-way opening! Sometimes it is not a doorway open for you to run for cover, but for God to enter and strengthen you with His might! When God’s greatness within you is revealed, run toward the giant with whatever stones God has placed in your hand. And when your eyes are opened, the weaknesses that lie within will diminish and you will feel the anointing engage… its the great opportunity to be made strong in Him (2 Cor. 12:9-11)(Phil. 4:13).

“Although I am less than the least of all the Lord’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the boundless riches of Christ.” (Eph. 3:8) …and I will not miss God’s dream for me…

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