Strategies in Spiritual Warfare \|
“When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are safe. But when someone stronger attacks and overpowers him, e takes away the armor in which the man trusted and divides up his plunder. 23 “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.
Luke 11:21-23 [NIV]
The Bible makes it clear that a battle line has been drawn between two kingdoms. Satan has tried since the beginning of time to copy God’s hierarchical organization and fill it with perversion. God has always preserved a remnant of true followers who will not be turned away from Him. These followers – you and me – have been the subject of Satan’s jealousy and anger since the serpent set out to deceive Adam and Eve.
The enemy has a limited arsenal that he uses to attack God’s people. This month, we have been examining these inferior methods of attack and discussing effective defenses to them. God has harvest for His people! In this season, God desires that you should break old cycles, take possession and experience ownership! The “law of possession” is the act of taking into control or the act of having control. The law of possession and the accomplishment of ownership has to do with the bigger spiritual mandate of dominion.
One stronghold that the enemy tries to perpetrate in order to create strongholds on a large scale as well as on an individual level is the spirit of scattering. Let’s review Luke 11:23: “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”
It’s important that we grasp Jesus’ sentence here, because His one sentence is packed with brilliant meaning that He intended to illustrate a huge concept about life.
The word “gather” used here means “to lead together, collect or convene; to entertain hospitably; to accompany, assemble selves together, to take in. There is a connotation of unity and togetherness when He says, “Whoever does not gather with me scatters.”
The polar opposite of “gather” is to scatter. The word “scatter” means “to dissipate, to put to flight, or to disperse abroad.” It comes from a Greek root word meaning “skepticism.” Skepticism is a philosophy that true knowledge in a particular area is uncertain. It is systematic doubt.
There is so much that Jesus was saying to us when He used these particular words.
The spirit of scattering is directed by an attitude of skepticism or doubt. Its objective is to make you not believe in God, the church, His people, and His principles. This spirit is sly and subtle but dangerously destructive, because it leads to division.
When pure Christianity degenerates into divided camps of people wanting to do their own thing, it destroys the harmony, power and blessing of God. The individual who supports or brings such carnal divisions has positioned himself to be judged by God.
Building the house of God is still Christ’s highest priority. The world is His harvest, the Church is His bride. Jesus’ last prayer in John 17:20-23 is still His passion: “that we would be one.”
There are territorial spirits that despise the gathering of God’s people.
Then lifted I up mine eyes, and saw, and behold four horns.
And I said unto the angel that talked with me,
What be these? And he answered me,
These are the horns which have scattered Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem.
And the LORD showed me four carpenters.
Then said I, What come these to do?
And he spake, saying, These are the horns which have scattered Judah,
so that no man did lift up his head: but these are come to fray them,
to cast out the horns of the Gentiles,
which lifted up their horn over the land of Judah to scatter it.
The horn is a symbol of power, strength and might. These horns are evil – representing rebellion, division, strife, gossip and the like. The result was the people were not able to lift up their heads. This is a sign of oppression, despair and heaviness. This is always the result of people who refuse to gather with Christ and His people by allowing themselves to be influenced by these spirits.
Why do people scatter? God can scatter an entire family or people because of pride or disobedience. Maybe the will to build and make a name for themselves overtook them, as in the Tower of Babel, and God responded by scattering the people. Another reason is that sheep scatter when they’re being led by a “hireling” and not a true shepherd appointed by God.
“Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. 29For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. 30Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.” Acts 20:28-30
As we know, a flock is a group of believers. The phrase, “take heed” means to tend them as sheep, to be a supervisor. Overseers means a “superintendent; to watch with diligence.”
Watch out for those who “speak perverse things.” This term means ministers who misinterpret or distort truth. We should always know the Word of God for ourselves to be able to test what a particular minister is teaching. If there was no need for this, God would not have warned us in His Word.
I JOHN 2:18-19, 18Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time. 19They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.
I want to leave you with three effective defenses against counterfeit gifts. First is the principle of prevention. If you can avoid coming under the influence of a counterfeit gift, then you prevent someone speaking a demonic prophesy over you, or speaking wrong doctrine in a persuasive way. Charisma is powerful, and Satan seeks to use it against you.
Second is the principle of preservation. If you abandon all connections with a charismatic, yet corrupt person, then you preserve yourself. 1 Corinthians 15:33 states, “Bad company corrupts good morals.” The Word of God commands us to withdraw our connections from such people. Your peaceful, silent withdrawal from a person’s life may be exactly what they need. (See also 1 Tim 6:3-5).
Thirdly is the principle of purification: confront them. Be sure you are armed with the Word of God; people who are operating under counterfeit gifts quickly retaliate with vicious poison once confronted. Be sure you brace yourself, have been in prayer, and stay in the Holy Spirit. Fasting prior to a confrontation is especially effective. A refutation is a powerful and Biblical method of overthrowing a counterfeit gift.
9He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught,
so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine
and refute those who oppose it.
Titus 1:9, [emphasis mine]
Whatever has restricted, confined, limited and held you back – the foundation of it is about to be rocked! I decree there is an outpouring of the Spirit of God over you, over this ministry, your purpose, and your family.
The real gifts of the Holy Spirit from God’s true followers will be unlocked and unleashed to flow freely! GOD HAS A SUDDENLY MOVE OF HIS SPIRIT waiting for us! It’s time for outpouring and overflow in the name of Jesus!