JAC Online

The Call To War
by Janet Munn

 

The authority God delegates to sincere followers is eminently practical.  It is not merely about sitting in heaven with the angels and saints and martyrs and 24 elders and four living beings.  It is about winning the war on earth right now.  And the devil struggles with all his energy to dissuade, discourage, distort so that we settle for our current level of obedience.  Our clear understanding and embrace of this thoroughly biblical authority will empower us to confidently and victoriously confront the enemy in every situation. 

 

 

The Authority of the Believer: Exercising Our Dominion in Christ

 

God gave the dominion of earth to humans

 

A.  God gave the dominion of the earth to humans forever.  He releases His power in the earthly realm in response to redeemed humans living in agreement with Him (in their individual sphere of influence).  The Spirit moves in response to what God’s people say and do. Jesus will rule the earth forever in partnership with His Bride who is filled with adoring obedience.

 

Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominionover all the earth… God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion overevery living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26-28) ‘Let Us make humankind in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them have dominion overeverythingupon the earth.’ … God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion overevery living thing that moves upon the earth.’ (Genesis 1:26-28 NRSV)

 

The heavens are the Lord’s heavens, but the earth He has given to human beings. (Psalm 115:16 NRSV)

 

What are human beings that You are mindful of them… You have given them dominion over the works of your hands; You have put all things under their feet. (Psalm 8:406 NRSV)

 

For all things are yours: whether…the world or life or death, or things present or things to come – all are yours. And you are Christ's, and Christ is God's. (1 Corinthians 3:21-23 NKJV)

 

Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me… (John 17:24 NKJV)

 

To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne... (Revelation 3:21 NKJV)

 

B.  When God gave the governing authority of the earth to Adam, he had the right to use it in any way that he chose.  He did the unthinkable with it.  He committed high treason and gave his authority over the earth to satan (Luke 4:5-6 NKJV).  At that time, satan became “the god of this world.” 

 

This authority…has been delivered to me [satan], and I give it to whomever I wish. (Luke 4:6 NKJV)

 

Whose minds the god of this age has blinded…lest the light of the gospel…shine on them. (2 Corinthians 4:4 NKJV)

 

C.  At the cross, Jesus as a Man defeated satan and all demonic powers and made a public spectacle of them before all in heaven and hell.  He has won the victory, but it must be enforced in this age. Authority is delegated power.  A police officer stops a car by the authority of the government, not his physical power.  Like the policeman, we must put our hand up and invoke the name of Jesus.

 

Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it [His death and resurrection]. (Colossians 2:15 NKJV)

 

D.  We must enforce Jesus’ authority on earth.  The enemy’s attacks against us will continue if we accept them.  There are two common errors in responding to satan’s attack.  First, to ask God to resist satan for us.  We must not ask God to do what He entrusted to us.  As God will not plant the seeds and pull the weeds for the farmer, so He will not rebuke the devil for us.  Second, to accept satan’s attack under the banner of honouring the sovereignty of God.  They say, “Jesus, I trust Your leadership.”  We trust His leadership best when we obey His command to actively resist what the devil presents to us.  It is a misapplication of the glorious doctrine of God’s sovereignty to passively accept what we must actively resist.  There is no “cease fire” in our spiritual conflict.

 

Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. (James 4:7 NKJV)

 

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith… (1 Peter 5:8-9 NKJV)

 

E.  We must use our authority against satan, who seeks to steal, kill, and destroy God’s blessing in our life (by fear, addictions, emotional oppression, division, sickness, financial oppression, etc.).  Jesus gives insight into satan’s nature and tactics against us whenever he is involved in our life.

 

The thief [satan] does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. (John 10:10 NKJV)

 

F.  The principalities and powers speak of the invisible demonic hierarchy in the spirit realm.  Our primary problems are not of human origin, but are invisible enemies.  To stand (v. 13) is to refuse to accept satan’s attacks.  God’s Word is our weapon.  We resist satan’s attacks by speaking the Word.  Heightened strife or negative emotions often involve satan’s flaming missiles striking us.

 

We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers…in the heavenly places.  Take up the whole armor of God… having done all, to stand… taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one… Take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God… (Ephesians 6:12-17)

 

G.  Our problems are often the result of several factors working together including psychological issues (our mindset, belief systems, and life choices), physiological issues (diet, alcohol, chemicals, etc.), sociological issues (what others do to us), and spiritual (demonic attack).  By using our authority, we can remove the added pressure that demons bring to our problems.  This makes it easier to solve physiological, psychological, and sociological problems.  Exercising authority against satan’s attack does not automatically cancel all the consequences of our wrong choices or the effects of what others do to us.  There are varying degrees of demonic oppression.

 

H.  Fear, rejection, and addictive urges are a form of demonic oppression that must be rebuked.  If they are allowed to gain dominance in our thinking, they will dominate our life with despair.  We must take authority over the spirit of fear.  It must not be accepted or allowed to grow.

 

God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)

 

 

Our spiritual authority is based on Jesus’ victory and exaltation

 

A.  Our spiritual authority is based on our union with Jesus.  The authority that Jesus received as an “exalted Man” is given to His people.  God gave Jesus to the Church (v. 22) as our head (v. 22) and made us His body or the vehicle through which He expresses His power on earth (v. 23).

 

The Father of glory, may give to you… revelation in the knowledge of Him… that you may know… The exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe… which He [the Father] worked in Christ when He raised Him…and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places… He put all things under His [Jesus’] feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him… (Ephesians 1:17-23 NKJV)

 

We have the same category of power within us that God used when He raised Jesus from the dead.  Money can’t buy it.  Threats can’t make it happen.  Military power/natural weapons can’t compare to this power.

 

In 1 Corinthians 12 the emphasis is on the people of God, the Body of Christ connected to each other.  But in Ephesians 1 the emphasis is on the Body connected to Jesus, the Head – forever and ever.

 

B.  We must take our place of authority in Christ as those seated in heavenly places with Jesus (Ephesians 1:3, 20-22; 2:6).  Having been raised to sit with Jesus in heavenly places, we are given access to God’s throne.  When we pray according to God’s will, our prayers reach His throne and find approval, resulting in the release of power.  We must know who we are in Christ.

 

Raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ... (Ephesians 2:6 NKJV)

 

C.  The command of faith doesn't always bring results instantly.

Do not become sluggish, but…through faith and patience inherit the promises. (Hebrews 6:12 NKJV)

 

D.  Our authority is based on what Jesus accomplished, not on our moods, feelings, fervor or recent victories.

 

“Not by [human] might nor by power, but by My Spirit,” Says the LORD of hosts. (Zechariah 4:6 NKJV)

 

 

Examples of wrestling in prayer:

 

Take (wield) the Sword of the Spirit: A human being agreeing with Jesus.  Speaking the Word of God and keeping at it – that is wielding the Sword of the Spirit. (Don’t endure it – speak to it.)

 

1  “I refuse to accept this any more.  I refuse passivity but I rise up against it in the authority of Jesus Christ, who has conquered every foe.”

 

2.  “I will steadfastly resist.”

 

3.  “In the name of Jesus I cancel your assignment against me.”

 

4.  “In the name of Jesus, go, now – (be specific).  Leave my marriage, my children, my parents, my finances, my thought life, my relationships.”

 

5.  “Take your hands off my marriage.  I cancel your assignment against me in Jesus’ name.”

 

6.  “I plead the blood of Jesus Christ over my body.”

 

7.  “I take authority over… fear… lust… perversion… suicide… demonic harassment and torment.”

 

8.  “In the name of Jesus I bind that spirit of fear.”

 

9.  “Release Your glory, Lord. Release Your manifest presence now, Lord.”

 

 

We call Salvationists (and all warriors of Jesus everywhere) worldwide to join spiritual battle on the grounds of a sober reading of Scripture, a conviction of the triumph of Christ, the inviolable freedom and dignity of persons, and a commitment to the redemption of the world in all its dimensions – physical, spiritual, social, economic and political.

 

We affirm that Christ our Lord calls us to join him in holy war against evil in all its forms and against every power that stands against the reign of God. We fight in the power of the Spirit in the assurance of ultimate and absolute victory through Christ’s redemptive work. (from “Called to Be God’s People” – International Spiritual Life Commission – bracket added by Munn and Court)

 

(Speak the word – don’t just think it)

 

 

 

  

 

 

   

 

 

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