by Len Buttner - We are in a spiritual battle like no other. That simple statement means it is time to pay attention. Let’s start with the basic principles of how the spiritual world works. Everything visible and physical is controlled by and results from that which is invisible and spiritual. Everything that occurs in the visible, physical world is directly connected to the warfare being waged in the invisible and the spiritual world.
Our biggest problems are spiritually rooted, and our answer is to invite the Holy Spirit to help us unmask areas in our lives and the church that still need victory and in turn freedom. As the Spirit of God reveals His plan, we begin to see a completely different picture of how the enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10).
Scripture is clear, 2 Corinthians 4:4 tells us there are evil spirits in the world that interfere in people’s lives. These evil forces influence and control the minds of individuals causing bad behaviour. We read in Ephesians 6:11, “Put on the whole armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles [scheming’s] of the devil.”
The answer to fix the visible and physical problems that we are experiencing in our lives and communities, is to address the spiritual and invisible issues behind them. Then release and realize the promises and commandments of God over our lives.
The Holy Spirit’s ministry using the gifts will help us address the spiritual and invisible scheming of the enemy. With the operation of the “Gift of Discerning of Spirits,” we can recognize whether or not something is truly from God and in accordance with His righteousness. This will help us make a long-term difference on the earthly level. We read in Ephesians 6:12, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
Our archenemy, Satan, does not want us in prayer warfare, and he would prefer us to ignore God’s divine perspective. Satan knows that we will never be able to solve the visible and physical problems until we address them according to the divine realm, seated with Christ.
The simple truth is the heavens rule earth. We must recognize that anything that causes us to be influenced outside the will of God is the influence from Satan and his demons or our wilful disobedience. This can be direct or indirect deception.
But we must remember what Scripture tells us in 1 John 4:4, “because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
What happens in the spiritual realm determines what goes on in the earthly realm. We are to remain in contact with our Heavenly Father through the Holy Spirit. God's plan has always been that man should be God's visible representative, created specifically to live in this visible realm to represent Him.
The keys He gave the Church represent authorization. This means we have been given the authority to act in His name. Possession of keys means that you are authorized to act in the name and authority of the one who owns the keys. By giving us the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, Jesus gives us the authority to influence Heaven. Jesus has authorized us to act in His name and on His authority to request whatever we wish that is in accordance with His will and His purpose.
God, who is unseen, has put His Spirit into the unseen spirit of man inhabiting a visible physical body, that lives on the visible earth. Through man's spirit, God created man to communicate with the invisible world of God, as God desires us to see and understand the spiritual realm in our relationship with Him.
We read in 2 Corinthians 4:18, “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
As I said at the beginning, we are in a battle. We need to understand our spiritual weapons are through God. (2 Corinthians 10:4 KJV), “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds”. Our spiritual weapons are “mighty through God” meaning in His strength – not our strength. We tap into the strength of the Holy Spirit, enabling us to do what we otherwise could not do.
Our victory is through His weapons:
- The Word of God
- The name of Jesus
- Our testimony
These are spiritual disciplines and weapons that need to be developed in every disciple’s life if we are going to overcome the enemy. Unfortunately, they are not often talked about in general church life today. Though, I am sure if you look around, you can find books about warfare or someone who can help mentor you in these areas.
There are many Scriptures about faith that help fuel us to walk successfully in this spiritual life, including: “The just live (operate) by faith” (Romans 1:17). “Without faith, it is impossible to please God.” (Hebrews 11:6). “Faith works through love.” (Galatians 5:6). “Because God is love.” “Those who operate in love abide in God and God abides in them.” (1 John 4:16).
God wants a group very committed to Him, to do something extraordinary with them. Courage looks fear in the eye and refuses to obey its demands. Courage tells the fear to be silent and instead rises up to do what is required, no matter how scary it may be. God is looking for men of courage and faith, men who are devoted to Him. We will be amazed what God can do with a small band of obedient fearless warriors! Are you being called for such a time as this?
Len Buttner is founder of Eagle Ascend Ministries, which is an itinerant ministry with a mandate to equip, empower and encourage the church. Len was an ordained minister with Elim before stepping out in faith to establish Eagle Ascend Ministries.