THE DELIVERANCE MINISTRY
DELIVERANCE IS FOR LIFE
Isaiah 46:3-4 “Listen to Me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been upheld by Me from birth, who have been carried from the womb: even to your old age, I am He, and even to gray hairs I will carry you! I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you.”
Those who go through the deliverance ministry,
sometimes think that it is a one time preposition because of the great results that they received after being delivered from a stronghold that held them back for so long. But in reality, deliverance, like salvation, is a lifelong process that involves every believer, even if they have not gone through ministry under a well trained deliverance team.
Not every believer has a stronghold in their lives so powerful that needs outside help in order for them to break loose from it. In this lesson I want to deal with the ministry of deliverance itself and the different kinds of strongholds that afflict so many of God’s children today.
Deliverance and salvation are synonymous in the sense that we all need to be saved and we all need to be delivered. Salvation saves us from our sins, deliverance saves us from the consequences of our sins. There is a difference, and awareness of that difference can make all the difference in the world, pardon the pun.
1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Sin is a double edge sword, it cuts both ways, it brings separation and condemnation/consequences. Jesus, the two-edge sword Word of God who became flesh, is faithful and just, faithful to forgive us our sins and just to cleanse us from the consequences of our sins.
We can never understand deliverance until we understand the two sides of sin. Let’s say that a person sins against another person, let’s call that sin a violation of trust; let’s say that the offender repents and asks the offended person to forgive them, and let us say that the offended person truly forgives them, it does not necessarily mean that the person that got hurt and forgave the trespasser, will be able to trust them again even if they wanted to, because within our nature we do not like to get hurt.
During ministry, many a time I heard the injured party say to me that they cannot let go of the offense, they know that the Scriptures compels them to forgive the offender, yet the pain is so real to them that they cannot bring themselves to forgive because they equate it with having to put their trust on the offender only to get hurt all over again.
Forgiving does not mean trusting in their flesh!
Philippians 3:3 “For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.”
God does not put any confidence in the flesh and neither should we, but if we want to worship God in Spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, we must be obedient to His Word, that is if we want to be delivered from our inabilities to trust again and be free from the fear of getting hurt.
We need a basic understanding of how Jesus is faithful to forgive us, and how He is just to cleanse us from our repeated offenses that just won’t let us go, because of the stronghold that they have over our actions.
It all begins with us putting our trust in the covenant!
Hebrews 6:18 “That by two immutable (unchangeable) things, in which it is impossible for God to lie (And He also swore that He would not change His mind 7:21), we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us.”
In the covenant that allows Jesus to be faithful to forgive us our sins and just to cleanse us from their consequences, we find that the God who cannot lie, swore on an oath that He would not change His mind.
Here is what it means: when we forgive, we do so in the expectation that the offender will not hurt us anymore by violating our trust once again. If they continue to hurt us after we have truly forgiven them, we, rightly so, change our minds and break away from fellowship with them, and the offender bears the consequences of their sins against us by being deprived of our communion with them, for that might be the only way that we can keep them from hurting us.
So that in our natural way of thinking we see our relationship with Jesus in the same frame of mind, since we keep sinning against His Word because of a stronghold in our lives, we derive that He changes His mind toward us and does not want to be around us anymore.
Although our hurting others will keep people away from us, we can never drive Jesus away from us, because He promised us that He would never leave us nor forsake us, and He swore on an oath that He would not change His mind.
So that if we want to see ourselves in the way that Jesus sees us, we need to see those who continue to offend us as Jesus sees them.
It is the spirit of Selfish Ambition against the spirit of Self Control!
When someone hurts us, our natural response is, they hurt me, we hardly realize that the person hurting us is so hurt that they just simply hurt back others just so that in their minds they get even somehow, that is how the spirit of Selfish Ambition works, it is self-centered.
If in the other hand we realize that the person hurting us is under the control of a spiritual stronghold, especially when they have repented in the past and come back and hurt us again, then our mind set can be one of Self Control, for our emphasis is now on the spiritual condition of the offender instead of our own hurt that we are experiencing by their actions against us.
In spiritual warfare, once the spirit behind the offense is exposed, that lays the foundation for our victory over them. So that every time that we are offended we have an opportunity for a double victory.
If we do not take the offense personal, we do not get hurt, for we say to ourselves, this is not about me, they are the ones that have a problem.
Then we can direct our focus to the person that needs to be set free from their strongholds, we can do that by putting them on our prayer list and asking Jesus on a regular basis to bring deliverance into their lives, or if a door is opened for us to minister to them, because we did not take it personally when they hurt us, then we can lead them into the truth that Jesus loves them and will never leave them no matter what, and if they see that demonstrated in us they will know that it is for real.
How do we identify strongholds? Selfish Ambition is always rooted in idolatry, and at the heart of idolatry is self-worship, for it cries, is all about Me.
When we get offended it is because Me got in the way. But how can I keep from getting hurt you may ask? Next time that you get offended ask yourself this question, Who is offending Me, the person or a spirit within the person? If your answer is, it is the person, then it becomes personal to you, it also becomes a trap for your soul, for Jesus died for that person’s soul just as much as He died for your own soul, and now you find yourself embroiled in a dispute with a person that was created by God and in the image of God.
But if your answer is, it is the spirit within that person that is offending me, then now you become one with Jesus in the indignation that one of His creatures has been taken captive by the devil to do his will. So that your prayer to Jesus would go something like this, Dear Lord Jesus, look what that spirit is doing to your child, please Lord set them free! We may not realize it, but that is probably one of the most powerful prayers that we will ever pray, for a prayer like that cannot come from us, but from the Spirit of God that dwells within us.
Matthew 5:44-45 “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”
How can we be different if we behave like the rest of the world?
In our opening Scripture God says that from the womb, even to our old age He carries us, and ends by telling us that He will deliver us.
What that means is that whatever happened to us, no matter how bad, or how evil, how unthinkable, or how depraved, He will deliver us!
We can on one hand, blame our past for our present circumstances and lash out at others from the midst of our wretched condition; on the other hand, we can use those past experiences as a platform to launch our deliverance mindset that in everything, all things always work out for our own good, because He loves us and He carries us to victory no matter what.
Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”
All we have to do is reject Selfish Ambitions and embrace His spiritual fruit of Self Control.