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STRONG HOLDS

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As a Christian, we all need three things to fight the devil.

1. The Blood of Jesus Christ

2. The words that we speak

3. The willingness to fight till we win

Rev 12:11 says, And they overcame him (the devil) by the blood of the lamb, by the word of their testimony and they did not love their lives to the death.

The devil also has three weapons namely, sin, accusations and strongholds. Sin is ‘separation from God’. Accusations are the ‘blames that are caused by the devil’.

What is a stronghold? It is a mindset infiltrated with hopelessness. This state of mind drives you to accept situations as unchangeable, even those that are contrary to the will of God. Where does the enemy build strongholds? It is in our minds.

The devil always uses just one area to build a stronghold. He thereby brings down the ‘Word of God’ to a point of failure. In effect, the Christian will know the ‘Word of God’ but the ‘Word of God’ is hardly seen in their lives. They get a pass in the ‘theory’ but fail in the ‘practical’. They believe in something and they do another thing. In some well-meaning Christians, there is this constant battle going on. They have godly desires but they cannot make it happen in their own lives. The battle is for the mind.

Paul asked the Galatians, ‘O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth (Gal 3:1) The Galatians are warned against their foolishness which took their eyes from the cross. In the same way we need to check on a regular basis if there is anything that diverts us in our Christian walk.

James talks about a double-minded person in the following verses:

Jam 1:8 says, …a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.

Jam 4:7,8 says …Resist the devil…you double minded.

A double minded person has two minds. Mind ‘A’ thinks according to the will of God. Mind ‘B’ thinks contrary to the will of God. And there is a constant battle going on in our minds. Between Mind ‘A’ and Mind ‘B’ there is this “lofty thing”. We are warned against this lofty thing which exalts itself against the knowledge of God (2 Cor 10:3-5)

All in a sudden you do not end up having a double mindedness. Initially, the devil tempts you. May be to sin, a secret sin, a bad habit or a sneaky little thing that is excusable to you at that moment. Every time you think about it you say, ‘it is o.k. and it is just a small mistake. But the day, you want to do a great exploit for the Lord, that is when the devil says, Well! what about this? The enemy will encash the check at that time. And the Christian is unable to do something for the Lord. He remains a weak Christian. His talents and abilities lie dormant. This is a big problem in the life of believers.

The strongholds are developed in the shadow of our strengths. We are not as watchful in our strengths as we are in our weakness. This is the reason people fall into sin when they least expected. They think they can overcome when they really cannot if they have given room for the enemy. Eg: not most of the drug addicts wanted to become one when they first tried the drug. Why? They think they can control when they want to. What really happens is the enemy always tempts you to go further in the sin and you come to a point when coming out is far fetched.

Strongholds are built on good thoughts and well meaning attitudes: The devil is subtle in his ways. He always gives a glamorous thought and a good idea. It sounds good to you at that time. What we fail to do is ‘to commit that idea unto the Lord and seek God’s counsel’. Most of the ideas may not be God’s ideas for you. Is 55:8 says, “My thoughts are not your thoughts”. The thoughts we get naturally are mostly not God’s thoughts for us. Strongholds are activated by trauma when acted on a good thought. This is why Jesus had to say to the enemy which influenced Peter, “Get behind me, Satan” (Mt 16:23)

Keys to overcome the strongholds:

1. Pull down the strongholds: The lofty thing needs to be broken in our lives. The partition in the double mind needs to be broken. The moment you realize that your mind is thinking something contrary to the ‘Word of God’, that is when you need to pull down the stronghold.

2. Fasting and prayer: We have to deal with the situation. We should arise and fight the battle and come out victorious. Jesus fasted for 40 days. Moses fasted for 40 days. Why should we fast longer? It is because ‘the weaker team looses in a longer fight’. Fasting prayer is a spiritual warfare.

3. Hold on to the word of God: Pick up the “word” for your situation from the Bible and say it out loud. Tell the devil that you will not believe his lies and you will believe the Word of God even if the situation is contrary to the word of God at that moment. You will soon see the situation line up with the Word of God. You will also see the devil loosing and you winning.

1Cor 15:27 says, … ‘He has put all things under His feet’

Rom 16:20 says, …’the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly.

These words clearly say that the devil is under our feet. Victory is ours. We are not fighting a defeating battle. The devil is the defeated foe.

May the Lord give us a victorious Christian life in Jesus name. Amen.