THE WEAPONS OF OUR ENEMY SATAN
The Bible says that we are NOT ignorant of Satan's devices. However in observing my fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord as well as observing my own life I have found that NOT ALL Christians are in fact aware of and are knowledgeable of the devices or the weapons of their enemy Satan. Some Christians in fact BLAME Almighty God for the things in their life that Satan himself is the direct CAUSE of bringing these things that are NOT desired to be in their life BY getting YOU to ALLOW him to do so. I have said before in some of my other Bible studies that in reality we have only ONE enemy and that enemy is Satan, the devil. Therefore it is VITAL that we know and understand the WEAPONS that he uses against us so that we will not be DECEIVED and ALLOW Satan to oppress us and KEEP us in bondage.
So then, let us begin this study in Gods word to learn about the four major weapons that are used by our adversary, the devil, to steal our FAITH and keep us in bondage are LACK of KNOWLEDGE, FEAR, DOUBT, and UNBELIEF. Now by no means are these four tools used by Satan to DECEIVE mankind the ONLY weapons of the enemy, but we have to start somewhere. And well for me, when I saw that feeding my FAITH had a direct effect on lowering and eventually eliminating my fear, then this was where I personally began to find greater victory over the enemy. Now I believe that all the weapons of the enemy operate under the umbrella of deception which basically comes because believers LACK the KNOWLEDGE of God's word as you will see as you read this study.
First off I want you to see that three of these four devices of the enemy are very closely related and that every thing begins with just a single thought. Now EVERY thing we hear or read, as we begin to think and ponder upon it, will ALWAYS go in the direction of ONE of three different ways, WHEN a believer LACKS KNOWLEDGE of God's word and is DECEIVED by the enemy using one or more of these three devices or weapons which are as follows:
One way or direction is that we will direct any one particular thought or group of thoughts to what I call the “TRASH BIN” file or the “ set it on the shelf, think about it later” file. In others words, we will either REJECT completely what we just heard or read, or we will say to our self, "I will have to think about that one some more, but not right at this moment, I am going to continue to believe the way I do for now". Or something along this line of reasoning.
The second direction we will take when we are thinking about what we have heard or read is to send our thoughts to the “RECEIVING” file, which consequently has two sub files or sections. In others words, TWO separate and distinctly different directions or ways of viewing or believing about what we have heard or read.
Now one section of this “receiving” file is labeled “Yes, that is a really good idea!, I like that!, Awesome!”. This section is called the “FAITH” section, which is more on the enthusiastic side that says, "I want to learn more about this topic or subject so that I can make a change in my life to the better". This FAITH side will most always brings GOOD into your life. I say almost because sometimes Christians believe God's word only with the HEAD and not with their HEART or inner most being and therefore they do not always ACT on what they receive by FAITH in the HEAD. In other words, for the word of God to bring blessings and good things in a Christians life they must become a DOER of God's word and not just a hearer only whereby they deceive their own self.
However, the other side or section in this “RECEIVING” file contains all the negative undesirable thoughts that DECEIVE a person because they LACK KNOWLEDGE of the WHOLE word of God. Now I want you to UNDERSTAND that until your mind is RENEWED to the word of God, then you may not ALWAYS perceive these thoughts as being negative and undesirable. This section I like to call the “WORRY AND FEAR” section.
Included in this section there can also be found OPINIONS that are formed from bits and pieces of information that you have heard over your lifetime, which have become what you presently BELIEVE, good OR bad, right OR wrong, true OR false. You see, some of what you BELIEVE may NOT be SOUNDLY based upon the WHOLE word of God. It is partly because of these wrong beliefs that keep you in bondage to worry and unbelief, simply because you do not realize that your beliefs are incorrect. This is why God says in Hosea that his people are destroy for of BECAUSE of LACK of KNOWLEDGE.
"My people are destroyed for LACK of KNOWLEDGE: because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you, that you shall be no priest to me: seeing you have forgotten the law of you God, I will also forget your children."
You see, if you BELIEVE what you have come to know as being the truth, when in fact it is NOT the TRUTH, but you only perceived or believed it to be the truth, then you will be less likely to accept the TRUTH when it comes before you. This is one of the enemy's greatest weapons, DECEPTION! And what better way to deceive you than to get you to believe that you already know the truth, when in fact you are in reality believing a LIE of the enemy, which you THINK is the truth. Satan always uses a little truth to sell his lies to you, so BE NOT DECEIVED! Read and study the WHOLE word of God to PROVE to yourself the TRUTH of God's word.
So now that you know how your brain sorts out what you both hear and read we are going to take a closer look on WHY many people have the tendency to spend so much of their time in this “WORRY AND FEAR” section or file in their mind, whereby they are easily overcome by the enemy.
Well the long and short of the whole matter is simply condensed down to this one point, their computer like mind needs to be ERASED and then PROGRAMMED again according to God's WAY of thinking. You see, every thing to THEM still seems to be working fine, that is to say, that the glitch in their thinking process is not noticeable or apparent to them. They just know they are not satisfied with the way things are going in their lives, but they do not believe that the way that what the BELIEVE or the WAY that they BELIEVE is the problem. Their eyes have been BLINDED by the enemy to the knowledge of TRUTH. They LACK KNOWLEDGE of the WHOLE word of God. They are DECEIVED by the enemy, because they do not understand the WEAPONS of the enemy and HOW to defeats they weapons of FEAR, DOUBT, and UNBELIEF. This is why some Christians often BLAME God for the things that the ENEMY is doing to them. I have heard Christians say things like. "Why did God afflict me with this disease" not KNOWING that it is the DEVIL who oppresses mankind with sickness and disease. Their MIND has not been fully renewed to the whole word of God.
The word of God in Romans 12:2 says it like this,
"And be NOT conformed to this world: but be you transformed (how?) by the RENEWING of your MIND, that you may PROVE what is that GOOD, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
You see, until our minds are RENEWED with the word of God, we will continue to think like the world, which for the most part believe that they must keep open their “WORRY AND FEAR” file in their computer like brain and continue on thinking upon those things that they have heard or read assuming that they are the truth, which in turn only brings in even more thoughts of worry and fear. They think and ponder or meditate over and over on these worrisome thoughts, which produce unwanted emotions of anxiety and fear in them.
This “WORRY AND FEAR” file also has data stored in it that goes way back into their past. And this vast collection of individual files, which they have collected throughout their life are each filled filled with information that ONLY produce FEAR, DOUBT and UNBELIEF in their life.
Now what you need do is to come to UNDERSTAND and FULLY realize that the ONLY section or file that is in your computer like mind, which will be of any use to you to PRODUCE change to the GOOD, is your “FAITH” file that is based upon the WHOLE word for God.
You also need to learn that the “WORRY AND FEAR” file VITALLY needs to be thrown in the trash bin, and then immediately and permanently DELETED from your working memory. Now I realize that nothing is truly gone or completely erased from your memory, BUT you need to close the file on some things, and then send the rest to the "TRASH BIN" or at least to the file that says, "I will have to think some more about this later" file.
Now BEFORE deleting the “TRASH BIN” file or “the put it on the shelf, I will think about it later” file, you need to thoroughly go through everything you have heard or have been taught in the past and make absolutely sure that there is not something important that needs to be reconsidered or re-evaluated and moved back into your working memory. For you see, some things that we have considered for a little bit, but then decide to throw them into the trash bin quite possibly may be what God is trying to get us to see, but because of what we were taught previously we just merely conclude that it cannot be the truth so we throw it out. Sometimes we need to re-evaluate some things that we have learned, when new information or greater understanding is brought to our thought process.
You see, it is what we think and ponder upon that will eventually come to be what we BELIEVE, even if what we CHOOSE to believe is WRONG in God's eyes, but yet we THINK it is the truth. Now it is this wrong belief that we have arrived at through the thinking, and the rationalization process, which is what the word of God calls UNBELIEF, because it contradicts his WHOLE word.
There are two categories of UNBELIEF. The first category is where a person out right REJECTS that TRUTH refusing to BELIEVE that it is the TRUTH. The second category of UNBELIEF is that some Christians may sincerely believe that they are correct in that which they believe, but in reality they are being DECEIVED by the enemy. You see my dear brothers and sisters in our Lord Jesus Christ, IF what we believe contradicts or is in opposition with the WHOLE word of God, then it is none the less UNBELIEF even though at the time we SINCERELY believed it to be the TRUTH, when in reality it was a DECEPTION from the enemy.
Now the world may believe and blindly accept that worry, anxiety and fear are just a part of life and that is just the way things are. Therefore most of the world, including SOME Christians, are RULED and controlled by their fears, because they truly and sincerely believe that there is nothing that they can do about it, which is what I said before, they are in UNBELIEF. You see, because they have not yet come to the KNOWLEDGE of the truth, which is that they can indeed be set free from their fear. This is one of the reasons they remain in this state of being overcome by the enemy, because they do NOT BELIEVE CORRECTLY due to their LACK of KNOWLEDGE of the WHOLE word of God.
Here is how the process works. First we hear or we read something. Next we take that which we have just heard or read and we send it through the thought process. We dwell upon it, we ponder it, when think about it, we meditate upon what we read with our eyes and hear with our ears. Now you and I may hear or read the SAME exact thing, but perceive it differently. I may immediately direct this information to the “TRASH BIN” file, where I may or may not think about it later. I may say something to myself like, "All I know for sure at this point is that what I have just read or heard does not fit totally with what I already believe so I will have to THINK about this some more". This is what I call sending information to the "Put it on the SHELF" file or the "I will have to THINK about the some more" file. You see some things we read and hear do indeed merit keeping for awhile, until more information comes in and it can be examined more thoroughly.
However, you yourself may take this SAME information and after thinking on it for a moment will begin to worry and fret, then the more you dwell upon it you become more and more anxious. Then it is not too long after you worry and fret for awhile that your anxiety turns into out right FEAR. And then this outright extreme FEAR will almost and inevitably produce DOUBT that there is any hope, and in turn doubt will invariably lead to UNBELIEF if it is not opposed. Once you reach this stage of unbelief you will become almost unteachable and it will be very difficult to be set free from your bondage of unbelief. Not impossible, but difficult.
For example, If through the things you have heard or read you have come to believe, or more precisely you DO NOT believe that you can OVERCOME an addiction of some sort, whether it be drinking, drugs, smoking, pornography, stealing, lying, or whatever it may be, then it would be more difficult to persuade you otherwise, but yet not impossible. So the FIRST step to OVERCOMING anything is we have to BELIEVE that it IS POSSIBLE. You must at least begin to acknowledge with you HEAD that it is POSSIBLE WITH God to over come that BONDAGE that the enemy has entrapped you whatever that bondage may be before you can get the GOOD treasure of FAITH deep down into your HEART or your inner mist being where it will CHANGE you outer fleshly nature from the INSIDE out.
Even though there are those who do not believe that worrying or being anxious is that big of a deal there are others who truly want to be set free from worry and fear, so let's take a closer look at FEAR, which is one of Satan's most widely used tactics. There are 717 scriptural references in the Bible on this broad subject pertaining to FEAR that give clear instructions to us about HOW our enemy, the devil uses fear to overcome us. Now if you do not know much about the Bible, please know with certainty that when there is a lot of space given in the word of God to any one particular subject, then it must be very important in the eyes of God to teach his people about the subject and one such subject that the word of God gives us a lot of information on is FEAR. Therefore in God's eyes he must surely want us to SEE and KNOW the dangers of FEAR.
The Bible speaks of basically two kinds of FEAR, but at the moment I only want to focus on the type of FEAR that Satan uses against all of mankind. However, I will just briefly mention that the "FEAR OF THE LORD" differs from the FEAR that the enemy uses against us. The fear of God, which can best be defined or described as having great respect or reverence. This type of fear will always work to our advantage and will keep us from harm. You can be an EXCELLENT swimmer, and not FEAR water, but yet have a godly RESPECT for the raging swift flood waters.
On the contrary the FEAR that Satan uses as a weapon against us will always bring torment and harm to us if it is not stopped. For example there are some who are literally extremely fearful and even terrified of water and drowning. So then, FEAR must be disarmed before victory can be produced or made manifest in our lives. A person who is so fearful and terrified of the water and drowning will not ever learn to swim UNTIL they FIRST MASTER the fear that BINDS them. Here are three things that we need to be aware of in order to eliminate FEAR from our lives.
The Bible says in 2 Timothy 1:7,
"For God has NOT given us the spirit of FEAR, but of POWER, and of LOVE, and of a SOUND MIND.”
It is NOT God’s WILL for us to FEAR, because fear brings torment to our minds, and God wants us to keep our minds sound and at peace. Take a look at Isaiah 26:3 which teaches us that God will KEEP those whose MIND is KEPT on HIM in PERFECT PEACE.
"You will KEEP him in perfect peace, whose MIND is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.”
Then look at 1 John 4:18 which says,
"There is NO fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has torment. He that fears is not made perfect.”
God does not want us to live or walk in fear. In fact there are numerous verses from God's word which COMMANDS us NOT to FEAR! Search out the word of God to prove it for yourself that you have been set free from fear.
The mind is where your thoughts, the things you reason, and your imaginations occur. Any one of these three processes can either be good or bad, and therefore must be controlled. You must control your thoughts, and not let your thoughts control you. The crippling emotions of FEAR always begins as nothing more than a thought, and must be controlled before victory can be attained over the enemy.
For example: While I do not suffer from claustrophobia, which is the chronic fear of being in close tight places I did experience this FEAR one time being under a deck that was very close to the ground. I was all alone with no one around on my back under this deck fixing a problem when my clothing became stuck and I could not move. In that brief moment extreme fear began to over come me. My mind raced and I knew no one was around to help me. I had to OVER COME this FEAR, this PANIC attack before it killed me so I began to SPEAK to mys self saying, "CALM down Mark, you can figure this out, so just CLAM down, Everything will be alright. Relax, breath, PEACE in the name of Jesus." After HEARING these WORDS my MIND began to relax and be at peace. I started to then THINK on GOOD things like taking my belt off, which was caught on the joists of the deck preventing me from inching my way out from under the deck. the fear was all in my MIND"
I have a sister-in-law who has a fear of crossing bridges, but she has now learned to TALK herself OUT of fear when she comes to a bridge. It is the HEARING of POSITIVE FAITH filled WORDS that brings us FAITH to OVER COME the FEAR of the enemy. The MORE victories we win by NOT letting FEAR over come us the EASIER and easier it gets to overcome fear, worry and anxiety.
The process of gaining control over our thoughts can perhaps best be viewed as a battle between two opposing sides. I will call one side “good” and the other side “evil”. The inner man or the spirit of man is teamed up with God, the side of good. The Bible says that we are CO-laborers WITH God. The word of God teaches us that God is FOR us and that he is never against us. While on the other hand Satan, which is the evil side, goes about seeking whom he may devour by first trying to appeal to the fleshly nature of mankind. Once the enemy finds an unsuspecting target that is ignorant of his devices and which will give him a listening ear, that is to say one who will think and ponder on what Satan speaks to them in their MINDS, then the devil begins trying different tactics to deceive or intimidate with worry his newly found prey.
Now obviously, as with any battle, the side that gains and keeps control will ultimately be the victor in that particular battle. Therefore you need to be aware of the enemies' devices lest he should get an advantage over you. And one of the devil's devices is getting you to worry and fret until this worry becomes an overpowering FEAR in your life that controls your thoughts.
You see, if your thoughts are continually filled with FEAR and negative things and are not brought under your control, then the FEAR that you are fearful of, will eventually come to pass in your life, if so be that you remain in that state of fear. Please read and UNDERSTAND Job 3:25 which clearly teaches us that the things we FEAR will eventually come to pass if those fears are not brought under control and driven out of our thoughts.
"The thing which I greatly FEARED is come upon me, and that which I was AFRAID of is come unto me.”
The margin of my Bible says that the literal Hebrew of this verse reads,
"I feared a FEAR, and it came upon me”.
One could say to this that there is nothing to fear, but fear itself. For FEAR, if it is left unchecked will eventually come to pass. So it is very important to believe and respect what I am teaching you and get fear under your control.
I am sure you have heard someone say, “Don’t let your imagination run wild.”
FEAR is nothing more than a thought, an imagination that we begin to reason in our minds. Don’t let fearful thoughts run wild in your mind! Replace these thoughts of worry and fear with positive faith filled thoughts that you receive from God's word. FAITH comes by hearing God's word. Memorize scripture and SPEAK it audible to yourself when FEAR from the enemy begins to take hold of you. do not LET fear rule OVER you, but rather YOU RULE OVER what you fear.
Proverbs 4:7 says,
"Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all your getting get understanding.”
The mind is also where we perceive things. The word “perceive” means to take notice, to observe, to become aware of, and to achieve understanding. Another one of Satan’s devices is to keep you in darkness. In other words the enemy wants to keep you from knowing the truth, to keep you ignorant of God’s word.
So just how does Satan use this device or weapon of FEAR against us? I mean HOW does fear get to become a STRONGHOLD in Christians or in people in general? Where does fear BEGIN?
Let’s begin our search for these answers by first getting a better perception of one of the enemy’s devices known as “imaginations”. The American Heritage dictionary defines imagination as the formation of a mental image or notion that is NOT REAL or PRESENT. We need to fully understand that FEAR is only an imagination. FEAR is only a thought in our minds and nothing more! It is ONLY when the REASONING mode of the mind is activated that FEAR becomes a threat. Let me explain what I mean by this.
You no doubt have heard the phase, “Out of sight out of mind” Well I want you to put those mental images of fear that you are forming or that you have already formed in the theater of your mind out of your “mind's eye” and replace your thoughts by thinking on things that will set your mind free from worry and fear.
Let me go a little deeper to explain what I mean by this. Reasoning is the argument or evidence in our mind, which in turn produces you to DO something, or the FALSE EVIDENCE APPEARING REAL motivates you to action. For example, let’s say that you have been told that if you go out and play in the rain or you get caught in the rain and get soaked that you might get sick. Well some emphatically have come to believe that they WILL without fail get sick if they go out in the rain and get wet, but I chose to use more positive words, like MIGHT, may and SOME. Anyway this thought of being sick is not pleasant to you and therefore this thought becomes worry. And then worry if left unchecked will develop into FEAR. And then one begins to greatly fear until the fear that the fear comes upon them.
Now let’s suppose you have been caught out in the rain and you have been completely soaked. You may begin to think of what you were told about playing in the rain and how getting soaked by the rain will cause you to get sick. Now the FEAR of being wet and getting sick become connected as one thought. In other words the thought has now become a FEAR of having on wet clothes will cause you to have a cold. Now you move to the reasoning mode. You begin to think I need to get out of these wet clothes before I get sick. Now comes the motivation to action and you change into some dry clothes. Soon FEAR sets in again. That is to say, a mere thought comes to your mind, “I wonder if I got out of those wet clothes soon enough? I hope I don’t get sick.”
Now this example may sound trivial to some, but let us suppose that what you HEARD at some point in your life was that CANCER runs in your family. It may be some other fatal disease that you were TOLD runs in your family. It does not matter what you were TOLD! It is what you come to BELIEVE to produces the things in your life whether they we good or whether they be evil.
What I mean by this is that if what you are TOLD or what you HEAR causes you to DWELL on it and if your thinking, pondering and dwelling on the information you heard, what ever it may be, produces an overwhelming FEAR in your mind, then that fear will eventually become what you truly believe in your heart. Once fear enters into your HEART your inner most being, then that fear will come out of your MOUTH speaking the fear into existence. If you ALLOW it to FEAR will become an overwhelming ABUNDANCE in your heart if you do not do something to stop it. Some may be saying, so what is the big deal about being fearful over something.
Take a look at the words of Jesus found in Luke 6:45 which says,
"A good man OUT OF the good treasure of his HEART brings forth that which is good: and an evil man OUT OF the evil treasure of his HEART BRINGS FORTH that which is evil: for of (or because of, or the reason being is that) the ABUNDANCE of the HEART the mouth speaks.
If you have not already read the study entitled "THE POWER OF YOUR WORDS", then I implore you to read this power packed study that delves deep into God's word on the subject related to speaking right words that are words filled with FAITH.
You see my dear brothers and sisters in our Lord Jesus Christ, the more you dwell on these kind of worrisome thoughts the more your FEAR of getting sick or coming down with one of these evil diseases will grow and become a stronghold in your mind, until finally the thing you FEARED has come upon you. Here is an acronym of the word “FEAR” that I once heard that has helped me perceive FEAR for what it truly is.
FEAR is nothing more than FALSE EVIDENCE that is only APPEARING to be real! Yes the physical “symptoms” may be present in your body, but in a “spiritual sense” all these symptoms are only LIES from the enemy seeking whom he may devour. For a deeper understanding of what I mean by this please read the studies entitled "WHAT DOES BEING SAVED TRULY MEAN?" .
When you begin to understand that FEAR is only an imagination, then it will be an easy stronghold of the enemy for you to pull down. Look at 2 Corinthians 10:4,5
"(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but MIGHTY through God, to the pulling down of strong holds;)
CASTING DOWN imaginations, and every high thought that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, (and bringing into captivity EVERY THOUGHT to the obedience of Christ).”
The words “strong holds” here literally mean an ARGUMENT in your mind. The American Heritage dictionary defines stronghold as an area of predominance. One definition of predominate means to be of a greater quantity or influence. Perhaps a good way to illustrate this is to picture a balance scale with FAITH on one side and FEAR on the other side.
The side that has the greatest quantity of INFLUENCE will be the side that has or carried the most WEIGHT and will tip the scale to the favor of that side. Therefore, if your FEAR influences you greater than your FAITH, then that FEAR will begin to produce DOUBT, and then DOUBT will eventually become UNBELIEF. The end result will ultimately be defeat for you and victory for the enemy. This is why we need to feed our FAITH and STARVE our fears by REPLACING any and all THOUGHTS that bring fear with POSITIVE faith filled thoughts and WORDS of FAITH that we can HEAR or read. Faith COMES BY HEARING and good sound hearing or understanding come BY the WORD of God.
Some Christians LACK the KNOWLEDGE of God's WORD so they only dwell on what Satan DECEIVES them to dwell upon, which are THOUGHTS and words that produce FEAR in their lives. Some Christians are deceived into believing every thing they HEAR just because a preacher said so. They never search the word of god for themselves to see if what they are being taught is the truth of the WHOLE word of God. While other Christians will believe what the WORLD has to say OVER what the word of God has to say.
Yes FAITH does come from HEARING. But so does FEAR come from HEARING as well.
You see, the reverse of FAITH coming BY HEARING is as equally true in that FEAR ALSO comes BY HEARING, so do NOT let the devil get an advantage over you by keeping you under the bondage of fear by continually FEEDING your fears with words you HEAR that has produced those fears!
If you feed your FAITH you will automatically starve your FEAR. Soon the greater influence will become your FAITH, and the scale will tip in your favor. Your FAITH will produce peace and joy in your whole being and will give you strength to fight and resist the enemy unto the end and help you gain victory over the enemy than your FAITH. NOTHING is impossible to him the BELIEVES. BELIEVING is the single most valuable weapon that a Christians possesses. But you cannot BELIEVE what you do not KNOW. Therefore it is vital that all Christians discipline themselves to STUDY God's word for THEMSELVES to see if what they are being taught is the TRUTH of the WHOLE word of God. The LACK of KNOWLEDGE will destroy you.
Now let’s go back to the example of getting caught in the rain and getting soaked. Obviously your desire or intent is not ever to get sick, but you heard once that getting soaked in the rain breaks down your immune system and now the enemy has brought this piece of information to your remembrance and as you dwell upon it you begin to worry that you will get sick. If you continue with this line or direction of thinking this stronghold will become greater in your mind.
Now all the enemy has to do for most people is to get them to sneeze or cough, then all the other lies he has previously planted in your mind through other things that you have heard at one time or another will begin to join in to build an even bigger stronghold, until you are literally controlled by your fear of getting sick.
But you can stop all these lies of the enemy by feeding your FAITH with the word of God, which will produce HOPE in you that says I don’t have to get sick, sickness and disease has no right to come oppress my body, because Jesus bore all my sicknesses and diseases. As this influence of your FAITH becomes even just a little greater than FEAR, then HOPE will begin to change to confidence, which will in turn produce peace and rest that always leads to victory. You will not be concerned, anxious, worried, with getting out of those wet clothes, because you are no longer FEARFUL of becoming sick. But rather your focus of changing into dry clothes is ONLY because you will be more comfortable.
Your confidence now moves to peace and rest, which will bring you victory, because you now understand that it is NOT the playing or getting caught in the rain that has anything at all to do with you getting sick, but rather the FEAR of what you have HEARD and CHOSE to believe, might come to pass as to what is the cause for bringing this evil in your life.
Have you ever looked up the word "ILL"? This word "ill" means EVIL of the WORST KIND, to be sick. The evil treasure you have stored up in your heart by those things, which you have worried and fretted over is what the word of God says that causes this undesirable evil in your life. No doubt you heard as a child over and over again, “get out of the rain before you get sick”, or don’t play in the rain, because you don’t want to catch a cold”. These are just words that eventually produced fear in you, because you CHOSE to BELIEVE them. Remember the Bible says,
"I feared a fear and it came upon me”.
As you have seen FAITH and FEAR are opposing forces. And even though they are on opposite sides, they function or operate almost identically. Romans 10:17 says,
“So then FAITH comes by HEARING, and hearing by the word of God.”
When you avail yourself to hear and study the word of God, your FAITH, which you already possess, will be stimulated and rise within you. Your FAITH will “increase” if you will, not in quantity, but in intensity and in INFLUENCE. Therefore “feeding” on the word of God is how you feed or develop your faith.
Now as you feed your faith upon the word of God it will become the greater INFLUENCE on the way you THINK, and at the same time your fearful thoughts will decrease in their intensity and influence. The more you feed your faith by reading and studying God’s word the more influence faith will have in the battlefield of your mind. Soon your faith will become the predominate force, and the stronghold of fear will come tumbling down. God’s word will work on any and every fear, every single time, because greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world. Some Christian literally fear that they cannot stop SINNING and because of their fear the enemy has rendered them powerless. NOT because that ARE powerless, but because the BELIEVE that they are powerless. All they need to do is to FEED their FAITH in the area that the enemy has produce fear in them.
So then, in order to be more effective at pulling down the stronghold of fear you must know and understand that fear works in the SAME way that faith works. First you HEAR an evil report, anything contrary to what God says. Then you begin to think about what you have heard. Soon your thoughts will become anxious, and then worry will begin to produce fearful imaginations. These arguments or reasoning in your mind that are filled with fear will now form thoughts of doubt that will cause you to start losing hope. Before long doubt will turn to unbelief, which will ultimately lead to defeat for you, and victory for the enemy.
Remember I said that there were at least three things that caused the protective hedge that God placed around Job to be removed. The first thing we already discussed as being PERVERSE SPEECH in the study entitled "THE POWER OF OUR WORDS!". if so be that you have already read this study on speaking RIGHT WORDS.
The second thing is found in Job 3:25, which says,
“The thing I greatly FEARED is come upon me, and that which I was AFRAID of is come unto me.”
The only thing that will cancel your fear is YOUR faith. Faith will always conquer fear, but if you let it, fear will steal your faith or dominate your faith every time.
Basically it all comes down to a choice. Are you going to let the devil dominate your life with fear, or are you going to be a doer of the word of God and develop the faith God has ALREADY given you? What are you going to ALLOW your mind to think and meditate upon? Are you going to think on the thoughts that the enemy is trying to deceive you with? Or are you going to BELIEVE the word of God that will set you free from FEAR?
Then once you are free from fear, you will be saved (sozo), delivered, HEALED, made whole, rescued, protected, set free, and in right relationship with God. Remember FEAR is nothing more than a thought or an imagination in your MIND, and therefore cannot harm you if you do not ALLOW it to remain. But if left alone to grow fear will eventually produce itself. Fear of sickness will eventually produce sickness. Fear of losing your job will eventually produce losing your job. Fear causes you to profess and “prophesy” if you will the things in your life that you are fearing. Fear causes you to speak forth the things you are fearful of, and thereby you are “calling things that are not yet manifested in your life into being” Then when these fears come to pass you say, I told you so, didn't I tell you that this would happen. You see you BELIEVED your fears, SPOKE forth the ABUNDANCE of your HEART, and YOU YOURSELF BROUGHT FORTH or into being that evil treasure, which you feared in your heart.
So be a doer of the word, and cast down those EVIL thoughts that are producing fear.
In 2 Corinthians 10:5 we are told to
"CAST DOWN EVERY IMAGINATION that exalts itself against the word of God and BRING EVERY THOUGHT into captivity to the obedience of Christ.”
A thought becomes EVIL when the thought goes AGAINST what God says in his word. for example we read in the Old Testament that only two spies that when into the land of Canaan came back with a GOOD report and all the other spies came back with an EVIL report. Now both reports were just words and words in an of themselves are not good nor evil. What made the one report GOOD is that it AGREED with what Almighty God himself had already SAID. And what made the EVIL report EVIL was that it disagreed, opposed, and went against what God had SAID.
It is like some Christians today who say that the CANNOT over come sin no matter how much they try and therefore they conclude what the BELIEVE on the CIRCUMSTANCES of what SEEMS like they cannot overcome sin. This becomes an EVIL report in God's eyes, because God has PROMISED in his WORD that he would NOT ALLOW us to be tempted ABOVE that which we are ABLE to BEAR and that with EVERY temptation he will make a WAY of ESCAPE. So you can see why in God's eyes he calls those thing spoken AGAINST his WORD and EVIL report. The people themselves are not considered evil by God, but rather the LIES they speak that go AGAINST what his word clearly and plain says is what God calls an EVIL report. ALL the spies saw the SAME thing, but two spies BELIEVE what God SAID OVER what they SAW, felt, thought of heard the other spies say.
Faith is a CHOICE! We HEAR or read God's word and then we THINK or REASON if it is true or not. What HINDERS some from BELIEVING is what they have PREVIOUSLY been TAUGHT and come to believe by their CHOICE to believe what they believe. This is what the Bible teaches us to bring EVERY thought into obedience to his word brought to us through his CHRIST, his ANOINTED one.
When something is brought into captivity or held captive it is brought under one’s control and restrained from continuing to bring harm. For example the Bible tells us that we are healed by the stripes of Jesus and that he bore all our sicknesses and diseases.
Therefore if a mere THOUGHT tries to exalt itself above God’s word or goes against what God’s word says by saying to you when a symptom of a sneeze or a cough comes upon you, “You must be catching a cold”, then you are faced with a CHOICE you are going to have to make. Are you going to believe God’s word that says Jesus already bore that cold for you, or are you going to be deceived by the enemy and ALLOW the fearful THOUGHT of catching a cold to dominate your mind?
"I feared a fear and it came upon me.”
If your fear of catching a cold or becoming sick is left unchecked, and not brought under YOUR control, then the enemy will surely win in deceiving you into rolling over and accepting that cold or illness.
Rather than listening to the lies of the enemy become a doer of the word of God and bring those thoughts that oppose God’s word by casting them down and bringing them into obedience of Christ.
"Let the redeemed of the Lord SAY so”!
SAY I have been REDEEMED from the curse of the law. SPEAK to the mountain, SAY to those lying symptoms in the name of Jesus you are not allowed in my body. SAY, “Cold you are not allowed in my body in the name of Jesus for with his stripes I am healed. Jesus bore ALL my sicknesses and diseases. Satan you are a liar and there is no truth in you. I hold up the shield of faith against you Satan in the name of Jesus.” Then rest in the assurance that God will perform his word with signs following. It is that simple to walk in Divine HEALTH, if you do NOT waver and you remain steadfast unto the end of each and every temptation or battle the enemy brings against you. You will go from FAITH to FAITH from one victory to the next victory.
Another key to VICTORIOUS faith is found in Isaiah 26:3 which says,
"You will keep him in perfect peace whose MIND is STAYED on you, because he TRUSTS in you.”
The word “stayed” here mean sustained, upheld, braced up, steadfast and refreshed. Another meaning of sustain is to be supplied with the necessities or nourishment needed to support the spirit. When your mind remains STEADFAST on God and you learn to lean not unto your own understanding. God will uphold, brace up, support, sustain, nourish, and refresh your spirit through the element called FAITH. However, in order for our minds to remain STAYED on God we need to FEED our spirits on the word of God daily. If you are faithful to read and study God's word daily, he will write his word upon your heart and your mind and it will become that good treasure of your heart.
You see, your physical body requires food on a DAILY basis to be nourished and sustained. Likewise it is vital for you to nourish your inner man, your spirit with the word of God on a DAILY basis. Let’s look at the word “refresh” for a moment, and then it will become clear to you on how our spirits are nourished and strengthened in order to become the greater influence. Once your spirit is refreshed to the point of this greater influence it will rise up and take dominion over your flesh. The word “refresh” means to revive, which means to impart health to. Refresh also means to restore, to renew, and to bring back to usefulness or effectiveness. Think of your spirit as being like a rechargeable battery. When a battery is weak or becomes ran down it is of little use and not very effective. It is still a battery, but it is really of no use to you, it cannot do the job that it was made to do, UNTIL it is RECHARGED.
Likewise we can have KNOWLEDGE or UNDERSTANDING that was once CHARGED UP and ENERGIZED with enthusiasm about what God said in his word, because your heart was filled with ABUNDANCE on this particular subject of God's word. Then over time your focus was on other things and little by little the ABUNDANCE in your heart became less and less. Now you still have the KNOWLEDGE or UNDERSTANDING about God's word concerning healing, but like the battery that has lost its CHARGE and ENERGY, you have lost your ASSURANCE of faith in God's word. God's word is no less true now than it was when you used this same knowledge to receive your healing before. Only now his word doesn't SEEM to be working, and the reason is that your did not guard your HEART. Your HEAD still has knowledge, but the TREASURE of your HEART is not FULL to ABUNDANCE and overflowing
You see, the enemy brings his lies to you and tells you that God does not always heal everyone, every time. NO! NO! A thousand times NO. God's word will ALWAYS produces what it is DESIGNED to produce. God has PROMISED that his WORD will DO what he sent forth his WORD to ACCOMPLISH.
The reason you have not received your healing or you are not over coming sin is because you need to be CHARGED UP once again to the PEAK of overflowing ABUNDANCE in your heart. For you see in order for a battery to be at its’ peak of effectiveness it needs to be charged up to a FULL charge and then REMAIN charged. Simple REMOVING a battery from the SOURCE or where it RECEIVES it's CHARGE and not even using a battery will cause the battery to drain over time. Also being around a negative discharge, such as being "grounded out", this will also drain a battery very quickly and CAUSE it to be of NO USE, UNTIL this battery is RECHARGED.
Likewise, or in a similar manner, not using God's word will cause us to lose our proficiency in the scripture, and being around negative people and other Christians who do not share our same enthusiastic belief will also cause our spirits to be drained and therefore we will NOT be ABLE to function in our FAITH properly and EFFECTIVELY, UNTIL we RECHARGE ourselves by RENEWING our minds with the WORD of Almighty God. Jesus said TAKE HEED what you HEAR. And he also said TAKE HEED HOW you HEAR.
The Bible says in Romans 12:2,
"And be NOT conformed to (or fashioned according to, and following the practices of) the world: BUT be you transformed (HOW?) by the RENEWING of your MIND, (WHY?) THAT (or in order that) you may prove what is that good and acceptable and PERFECT WILL of God.”
Remember that it is impossible to please God without FAITH, and faith in God comes only through the HEARING (understanding) of God’s word. The word “renew” means to restore, to renovate, to take up again or resume. It also means to repeat so as to reaffirm. Sometimes we think we already know what God’s word says on this subject or that topic, but we need to take another look, a closer look, so that our spirits will be reaffirmed or re-established.
Another meaning of renew is to be replenished and brought into being again. We need to put a fresh supply of God’s word into our minds every day so that our minds will be transformed to think the way God thinks, and so that we will no longer be conformed to the world’s way of thinking.
Before I leave this scripture I would like to touch on the word “prove” which means to test, to try, to examine and to establish as true. Prove also means to be shown to be what is specified or stated by trial or experience. In order to establish God’s word as true in your own spirit you will have to be a doer of the word as if it were true. Put it to the test. God’s word will always be established as true IF you step out in unwavering FAITH and hold fast or endure unto the END. So what does this mean to HOLD FAST and ENDURE unto the END?
It simple means that WHATEVER you are BELIEVING FOR you must CONTINUE to BELIEVE WITHOUT WAVERING or casting away your FAITH or CONFIDENCE of RECEIVING what you are BELIEVING FOR, UNTIL you ACTUALLY have RECEIVED or OBTAINED what you are BELIEVING FOR.
So until you actually resist sin to the point of NOT giving end to the temptation to sin, then you have not resisted or endured unto the END to be saved or delivered from that particular temptation to sin. And until you actually RESIST sickness to the point of healing being manifested in your physical body, then you have not ENDURED the resisting of Satan unto the END to be saved of healed from what the devil has tried to oppress you. This is why Jesus said that only those who ENDURE unto the END shall be saved.
God's word says that he is faithful and just to FORGIVE us of our sin, but i cannot PROVE this truth to you. Only you can prove God's word for yourself.
God’s word says that you are healed and that is exactly what it means, but I cannot prove this to you. Only YOU can prove God’s word for yourself.
Renew your mind with the word of God DAILY until your spirit man rises to be the greater influence and takes dominion over your flesh. Then out of the ABUNDANCE of your heart your mouth will speak forth God’s word with boldness and unwavering faith. And then God will hasten to perform his word and you will receive what you are standing in faith to receive.
Once you prove God’s word for yourself you will have rejoicing in your heart, and you will have settled it once and for all time that God’s word is what it says it is. Galatians 6:4 says it like this,
"But let every man prove his OWN work (of faith), and then shall he (or she) have rejoicing in himself (or herself) alone and not in another.”
Some times we have faith in other people’s prayers, but don’t have much confidence in our own prayers. In order to grow beyond this point you will have to come to trust in God’s word and know in your heart that God is NO RESPECTER of persons, and that he will do for you what he does for another. But remember God only responds to FAITH, and faith in God only comes through his word.
Think back to the time before you were saved, before you ACCEPTED Jesus as your savior. If you were like me you will probably recall that the first time you heard the gospel (that is the good news of salvation) you did not openly receive it. However the more you were INFLUENCED by the HEARING of God’s word the more you began to think and consider the possibility of what you were HEARING as being the truth, until finally at some point in time you made a CHOICE to believe the word of God that you were HEARING and you ACCEPTED it into your heart as THE TRUTH. It was only then that you stepped out in FAITH and acted upon God’s word by CONFESSING what you made the CHOICE to BELIEVE. Now because you PROVED God's word to be the TRUTH , then Almighty God CONFIRMED his word with signs following, which in this case was the joy and peace you EXPERIENCE or that was MANIFESTED in you bearing WITNESS within you that you are truly SAVED (sozo). It was only after PROVING God’s word for yourself that you received the rejoicing in your heart, and that inner witness that assures you that you are truly saved without a doubt.
This same rule or process applies when it comes to RECEIVING healing (sozo), deliverance (sozo), having your needs met (sozo), or what ever else God has ALREADY provided for you (sozo) in his word, and then you desire to receive it by BELIEVING unto the END, which is when you actually receive that for which your are BELIEVING to receive. FAITH works on every area of God's word just as it did when you initially RECEIVED your salvation or the forgiveness of all your past sins that was ALREADY provided for you by the atonement of Jesus dying on the cross for the sins of the whole world.
Remember that it is ONLY by the ABC’s of FAITH (accept, believe, and confess) that we are able to RECEIVE from God what he has ALREADY freely given to us all.
Your healing has already been provided for you. Your being SET FREE from your sins has already been provided for you. Your deliverance from all that oppresses you has already been provided for you. All you need to do is RECEIVE it, and the ONLY way to receive it is through YOUR FAITH. You can live your life FREE from sin, but the ONLY way to do this is THROUGH YOUR FAITH.
Let’s suppose I were to stand before you with a gift in my hand stretched out toward you and say to you, “It is my good pleasure to give you this gift”. What would it take for you to reach out and receive that gift?
This process for receiving from God that which he has already provided for us is so simple and yet some seem to make it so difficult at times. Jesus said our faith must be like that of a child, simple and trusting.
The Bible tells us that Jesus has already paid the price of redemption for your spirit, soul, and body. Salvation for your whole being has already been provided for you. Jesus shed his blood for every man, women, and child on this planet. Not one person is excluded from the RIGHT of receiving this gift of salvation, but only those who reach out in FAITH and RECEIVE this gift that has already been given to them will be the only ones to experience the joy of being SAVED (sozo).
Never forget that being saved also includes being healed, and that you have every RIGHT to receive this free gift of healing just as much as you have the RIGHT to receive forgiveness of your sins. God is not the one withholding healing from you; the devil is the one preventing you from receiving what is rightfully yours by keeping you from coming to the knowledge of truth. Don’t be DECEIVED any longer, reach out by faith and receive your healing (sozo).
Remember that without faith it is impossible to please God, and Romans tells us that it is by the foolishness of preaching to save (sozo) them that BELIEVE (those who USE their faith that they ALREADY have). The only hindrance that is keeping you from receiving from God is you USING your FAITH.
Therefore if so be that your faith is dominated by fear, then you must spend more time renewing your mind with the word of God. You must continue this process of feeding upon God’s word until your faith becomes the GREATER influence. How will you know when this happens? Trust me, you will know. Just keep putting a fresh supply of God’s word into your spirit every day. This will keep your mind sound and stayed upon the Lord, and then that inner peace will come and rest upon you, but even then after you have received peace that passes all understanding you must step out in faith and be a doer of the word of God and not just a hearer only. DO what the Holy Spirit prompts you to DO.
I remember back on one of my hardest trials while I was yet learning to walk in FAITH. I had resisted the symptoms of the flue like I had done in the past, but this time they did not leave me as SOON as they had in the past when I resisted them before. I had resisted these symptoms all day long and when I got home from work I went straight to bed. My wife came in to tell me she needed to help her mom and she said right to my face, "I thought you said you were healed? Healed people do not lay in bed!" WOW! Did that pierce me deep. I THOUGHT about what she said, what I HEARD and FAITH began to rise in me. I began SAYING to myself, "She is RIGHT. The healed do not ACT as though they are sick." So by faith I got up out of bed and fell almost immediately to the floor due to the weakness of my physical body being over come by the symptoms of the flue. I kept SAYING to myself the healed do not act as though they are sick and I kept getting back up to walk to the living room where I was in the process of making a gift for Christmas. To make a long testimony short the moment I started to work on finishing the gift that I was making all of the symptoms of the flue left me as quick as one can snap their fingers. In an instant I was completely healed.
I do not have all the answers of WHY it seems so hard to receive healing while at other times it seems that we receive healing almost before we resist the sickness. But I am ever convinced and fully persuaded that Almighty God is ALWAYS FAITHFUL to perform his WORD and that it is ALWAYS God's WILL to HEAL! So do NOT ever blame God for not answering your prayer, but rather KNOW that it is the ENEMY of god who is HINDERING you from receiving that which you are believing God to receive.
In 2 Timothy 1:7 we read,
"For God has NOT given us the spirit of FEAR, but of power and of love, and of a SOUND mind.”
The word “sound” here means self-discipline operating in prudence and wisdom. In short God has given you a “sound mind” or a mind that is able to be self-disciplined and FULLY CAPABLE of being totally controlled by YOU.
In other words you have to CHOOSE whether or not you are going to believe and obey God’s word, or continue to listen to the devil and remain in fear. No one can make that choice for you. Only you have control over your own mind. Not me, not another person, not the devil, and no, not even God has control over your mind. You have been given a FREE WILL and it is always ultimately YOUR CHOICE.
The long and short of it all is that Satan has absolutely no power whatsoever over you at all, IF you are a child of God. The ONLY way that the devil can oppress you is by DECEIVING you into surrendering your rights and power to him. This device of the enemy called deception has perhaps defeated more Christians than any other weapon the enemy has to use against us including fear.
Revelation 12:9 says,
"And that dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which DECEIVES the whole world…”
Satan is deceiving the world, but YOU need not be deceived as well.
Deception is simply a misrepresentation of the truth. Satan will often use a little bit of truth mixed in with his lies to mislead or misguide your faith. In order to do this the enemy may use a fellow brother or sister in Christ or even a minister of the gospel. Look at 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 which tells us that there are false apostles and deceitful workers TRANSFORMING themselves into the apostle of Christ. Jesus tells us in Matthew 7:15,
"Beware of false prophets which come to you in sheep’s clothing (appearing to be Christians outwardly), but inwardly they are ravening wolves.”
Be not deceived! These false prophets and false teachers are not going to be carrying around signs saying, “Hey! I am a false teacher, so don’t believe anything I say.” No, that is not at all the way it will be. It is YOUR job to get into God’s word and search out for yourself whether or not the things you read or hear are actually the truth or not. We need to be more like the men of Berea who searched the scriptures DAILY to find out if what Paul and Silas were telling them was the truth. You can read about this in Acts 17:11. Also Jude 4 warns us that these wolves in sheep clothing have crept in unaware. The reason why these wolves were allowed to creep in unnoticed is because some Christians do not spend anytime on their own studying the word of God and do not truly know what the Bible actually teaches.
Hosea 4:6 says.
"My people are destroyed (why) for lack of knowledge: because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you…”
Satan has deceived some into believing that God sends sickness and disease upon his people in order to teach them something.
To this I say be NOT DECEIVED!
Some have been deceived into believing that God is in control so everything that happen is for your good. And some even go as far to say that NOTHING happens that God himself did not ORDAIN to happen.
To this I say be NOT DECEIVED!
Some have been deceived into believing that God does not heal everyone all the time and that God heals only those he alone chooses to heal, when and where he chooses to heal them.
To this I say be NOT DECEIVED!
Yet still others have been deceived into believing that if they bear their "cross" of sickness or disease that God will somehow be glorified.
To this I say be NOT DECEIVED!
There are many things that we as Christians must suffer, that is the bearing of our “cross’ so to speak, but in NO WAY is sickness and disease on that list.
This brings us to yet another study in God's word that I have entitled “JOY IN THE MIDST OF SUFFERING”. In this study we will take an exhaustive look at the things Christians may suffer and how they can experience JOY in the midst of their suffering. Although having JOY in the midst of suffering may sound like an oxymoron, God truly does desire us to posses JOY and PEACE in the midst of suffering for his name sake, like persecution and mocking and so forth.
Always and forever,
In Jesus Christ our Lord,
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