To be kept perpetual disobedience to God can be seen as the goal of manís enemy, Satan. He will stop at nothing to do it. The wise man said the end of all matters is that we should fear God and keep His commandments. In the book of psalms in Chapter 103, we see that God shows His compassion to those who fear Him and keep His precepts. The Commandments of God are centred on loving Him with everything in us and loving others according to our love for God. Our study has been an attempt to unravel one of the major ways that people, especially believers, are kept in disobedience to God. With strongholds people disobey with a reason. Ignorance can become a stronghold for it is not simply a lack of knowledge as in an innocent childís mind, but a mind full of the wrong stuff that keeps the person ignorant of the right things to know. The book of Romans tells us that the invisible things of God can be known through the visible things around us and as we fail to acknowledge God for who He is and glorify Him as God, we reap the consequences of our refusal to give Him His due. Really humanity is without excuse, this is the justification for people going into hell. There is a deliberate tendency in the human nature to be independent of God and His rules and expectations in our lives. The very theory of evolution is the grandest plan to outwit God in our minds by attempting to discredit the records of creation as seen in the bible. For ages man in his carnal elements has sought to throw away the yoke of God form humanity. He says ĎMy yoke is easy and my burden is lightí. If casting away His yoke will make life easier then maybe there will be a case, but with our fallen nature inherited from Adam, we are already yoked for destruction by sin. If we do not take His yoke, then the yoke of sin will have its toil on us. It takes his yoke to break the other. May we all stay with the right yoke that is designed for our redemption, salvation and eventual fulfilment in life?
As Mentioned earlier, Satan will stop at nothing to ensure the whole human race walks in disobedience to God and total disregard for His ways. His ways are painted as burdensome and harsh and sinís way is presented as easy and so good for the human flesh. Sin is presented as if it is the freest thing to do and it ensures your freedom. Nothing could be far from the truth. Sin enslaves, disobedience to God grants Satan the free access to our lives and future. This happened to Adam and Eve and many are still falling for the same lies. It will make you wise, he says to them. It made them so wise they needed to cover themselves with fig leaves after the deed. There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof is the destruction. Many are on the path of destruction right now and they are totally blinded to their destiny. I pray that it wonít be too late before their eyes begin to see the reality of their state. Ironically, the very thing we are being kept from is the very thing that will set us free and make us agents of freedom for the entire human race. Obedience releases something supernatural into the earth and brings out the best of Godís intention for us. Mt obedience positions me for God to do things in my life that will otherwise be impossible. Satan uses strongholds, mindsets and thought patterns crafted in hell to keep people in perpetual bondage to himself and keep Christians from being effective for God in their lives. Our minds were designed by God to be able to take in thoughts and build certain patterns through which future thoughts are supposed to be processed. They become formed into previous thought patterns.
In our formative years, our minds were formed into certain patterns and our future thoughts will need to go through those formed thought patterns in us. The world around us tries to squeeze us into its mould by impacting our thought systems with its values and excitements. As we subject our minds to a constant barrage of these values, we tend to have our minds conformed to this value system. In Romans 12, Paul says we should not be conformed but be transformed by the renewing of our minds. The renewing of our minds will imply the reconfiguration of our thought processes to come into harmony with the Word of God. Spiritual forces build mental strongholds. There is a connection between the realm of the spirit and the mental realm. In the presence of a spiritual force, the mental realm can easily be adjusted. Sin is a spiritual force that adjusted the functioning of our minds. Well righteousness is a spiritual force that can also affect our minds. The abundance of sin however gives sin an edge in the battle for the mind of humanity. Whatever the mind is constantly exposed to affects the form the mind takes, and whatever takes hold of the mind has taken hold of the life of the person. Thoughts of discouragement, doubts, failure, unbelief, fear, hatred, insecurity, pride, perversion (sexual or any other), and death or destruction are as real as they are permitted to be in the mind. For the most, the fear of something can kill a person without the thing having any real contact with the person. Fear is a spiritual force, that when permitted can do so much damage to a personís mind and eventually life. Thoughts of not being loved or valued can lead to depression and other psychosomatic disorders. Thoughts are powerful things as they have the ability to transmit the spiritual force that caused them to be in the first place. Fear can literally stop a manís heart from beating or cause his hair to grow grey. God has not given us the spirit of fear (so really fear is a spirit) but of power love and a sound mind. To really be free is to become free to obey God at all times.
Jesus, the bible says learned obedience through the things He suffered, in Hebrews 5:7-9. Obedience is to be learned. It does not come on us naturally. He went through this as a pattern for us. We will learn obedience through what we suffer. Many suffer but never learn obedience. That is because of strongholds, rather than learn what lessons we can derive from our experiences; many either learn the wrong lessons or learn nothing at all. He learned obedience through what He suffered in his walk with Godís purposes for Him. He suffered the limitations of humanity; the contradiction of the fallen race; he suffered being subjected to human limitations of people all around Him. (They could not see what He was about and hence made wrong judgements about Him). He suffered subjecting His flesh to Godís ways of doing things; things like prayers and deep supplications. He also suffered the cross experience. His obedience brought about restoration and recovery of all that Adam lost in the Garden of Eden. Through one manís obedience righteousness has now been made available to human beings through Faith in Him. Our true sacrifice in life is to walk in obedience to God. We need to develop the mind of Christ for the state of His mind is the reason why He walked in such obedience. His humility is also seen in how His mind worked. Paul says Ďlet this mind be in youí (Phil. 2). ĎNot my will but yours be doneí. ĎI can do nothing of my owní. Let this mind be in you and you can also walk in the obedience He walked in.
PULLING DOWN STRONGHOLDS
When the knowledge of God comes to our minds, the strongholds there show up. We are to use Godís Word to war against the stronghold in our minds. Whatever holds us from obedience must be confronted and dealt with. Many do not like confrontation, but we must confront the strongholds in us. Identify and confront it, do not call it any other name other than what it really is, a stronghold. Pull it down in prayer, cast it down with a word of authority and take actions where possible that are contrary to the stronghold. If it has become a habit then a change in lifestyle becomes necessary. The war must continue until the stronghold is pulled down. Words, thoughts and actions must be engaged to pull down strongholds. You may want to couple this warfare with a period of fasting and deep consecration to God. You have the victory but you got to put up the fight. Acting on the Word of God is the surest way to pull down these mighty fortresses in our minds. To pull down the stronghold of unforgiveness or hatred is to carry out acts of forgiving and love towards the person and others. Sometimes repentance when done repeatedly can become a tool for pulling down the stronghold of whatever sin we are trying to get rid of. The weapons of this warfare are the Word of God, the blood of Jesus, and the name of Jesus. The Word gives us promises and dictates a new lifestyle of victory for us by giving us a new identity and authority in Christ The blood cleanses us from sin thereby destroying Satanís hold on us through sin. The name carries the authority that is above every other name and at His name every knee bows including sickness, disease and every stronghold. We need to engage our weapons in this war and fight to win. We will be in a place of receiving the knowledge of God and yield to the Christ in us to give full obedience and our experience will be the fullness of God in Christ. Amen.
Jesus is Lord!
Rev. Kola Ewuosho
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Rev. Kola Ewuosho