Tuesday, January 10, 2012

good article on 'spiritual warfare'

There are many distractions out there. And in the church, we Christians tend to create our own distractions. It seems that we want desperately to feel like we're doing something, anything, for whatever we consider a good cause--changing the world, winning people for Christ, stopping the decline of society, you name it.

In doing this, though, are we really doing anything? Or anything good?

Let's say, for example, that you are a part of a group of people going to a city that has few churches, few Christians, and many people who need to hear the Gospel. Let's say that your group is only going to be there a couple of weeks. The leaders of your group, of whom you are not, decide that they want to engage in spiritual warfare instead of preaching and teaching the Gospel. So, you spend your time going to supposedly spiritually significant places in the city or surrounding areas--the top of the highest hillside or mountain, for example, or the exact center of the city, some place where something happened long ago that someone decided was spiritually significant, or what have you. At those places, you sing and pray and do things like "binding the strong man", and sometimes someone gets the feeling that something of spiritual significance has happened, or something has a verse come to mind that supposedly has something to say about what they're doing.

Maybe you visit a few places for preaching, but overall you're doing this kind of spiritual warfare stuff. And your group goes home, thinking they've done something significant. The Gospel wasn't preached all that much, few people heard about Christ dying for their sins, but your and your group did 'spiritual warfare', so hey, it wasn't a wasted trip at all.

For those who would think something like that, I submit this article to them.

Gladiator-style takedown of demonic forces, Part 1

Many spiritual warfare prayer warriors are sincere people who believe what they're doing is serious work, thus they don't enter into it lightly and are very cautious when they engage in intercessory prayer. They also admit that they're still learning the process of warfare prayer. The process they go through to rid the "client" of demons is called "therapy." A person who's cleansed of "cosmic beings" is deemed a "survivor."

Some in the deliverance ministries put their focus on so-called demon possessed people. As I said, many of them are serious sincere people who do not take exorcism lightly — but the fact remains that they're involved in an unbiblical practice...

Later Beardsley says:

In the book of Revelation, demonic activity picks up again. But even in the sections which are addressed to the churches (chapters 1-3), there are no directions for speaking to demons. Even with the Church living under demonic pressure, where Satan's throne was (Rev. 2:13), there were no commands to bind and/or cast out Satan and his demons. When Jesus spoke to the church at Thyatira, He did not say, "Bind Satan" or "You have a territorial demon, drive him out." Even those believers who were under the influence of the wicked Jezebel were not told to break her demonic power. Revelation gives us a glimpse into the demonic world and what is taking place behind the scenes. However, we do not have any situation where believers are running around binding and casting out demons.

It's time, past time, the church stops doing what I call "spiritual busy work". It's a distraction from doing our real work, proclaiming the Gospel and living godly lives. There are things Scripture tells us to do, and among the things we are not told to do is to get all into taking down spiritual strongholds.

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