The Deliverance Ministry
RELENT OR RESIST
Romans 9:19 “You will say to me then, ‘Why does He still find fault? For who has resisted His will?’”
How do we know, when an adverse circumstance rises against us, if we are to resist it, or just accept it and endure it?
Here is what I mean, if the adversity is a trial sent to us from God for the testing of our faith, we would not want to fail the test by resisting the adverse circumstance to the point where we renege our faith on His promise that if we endure trials faithfully He will see us through them.
But if it is an attack from the enemy, we want to come against it head on and defeat it, for we are told that if we submit to God and resist the devil that he will flee from us.
Acts 7:51 “You stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears! You always resist the Holy Spirit; as your fathers did, so do you.”
The Scripture in Acts gives us a tremendous insight into how vital it is for our wellbeing to be able to know when we are to resist adversity, and when we are to relent and endure them. Because if we are resisting the Holy Spirit we are fighting against the will of God for our lives, and that is not going to be good for anybody.
Uncircumcised in heart and ears.
Circumcision is a type for the removal of the flesh from the life-giving ordinances of God, in other words, we need to remove our carnality from the decision making process. That resolves the first part of the problem.
An uncircumcised ear is one that focuses on the adversity alone, and by doing so, the heart, where the decision making process takes place, is compromised, for it cannot make an informed decision since it is only receiving one side of the adversity we are facing; which is the pain it causes, and not what the potential benefits, if any, might be.
As your fathers did, so do you.
The second part of the problem is generational; resisting the will of God for our lives is embedded within our human genes, courtesy of the fall of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden, the Paradise of God for us.
Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden to prevent them from partaking of the fruit of the Tree of Life, for had they eaten from it in their rebelliously carnal state, they would have become like the fallen angels, unredeemable and eternally dammed forever.
In God’s plan of redemption for humanity, Jesus who is the Tree of Life, hung naked on the cross to cover our nakedness with His holiness, and opened the door for us back into the Paradise of God where we can freely partake of the fruit of the Tree of Life, which is His Word/Promises.
John 6:63 “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.”
So that our decision making process, concerning anything, has to be based on the Word of God instead of what the flesh is experiencing!
How do we circumcise our hearts and ears?
Romans 9:9 “For this is the word of promise…”
We have to begin at the point of our salvation. Our salvation is the result of God’s promises to mankind. In Jesus, the Seed of the woman, all the promises of God given to us can be attained. For there is no other name under heaven whereby we must be saved and delivered.
Acts 4:12 “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
Spiritually speaking, what I am trying to say is that if we are fully persuaded that we belong to Jesus Christ, and we know for a fact that His Holy Spirit is within us, and we are convinced that He has a plan and a purpose for our lives, and that His plan and purpose is the very best for us, then nothing else really matters does it?
What I’m saying is that as long as we are fully committed to His good will and great and precious promises for us, the result can never be in doubt, even if our discernment fails us at times, for as it is written:
Hebrews 10:23 “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”
What that does for us is that it takes the pressure off from our decision making process. Hey, I don’t want to suffer a minute longer than I have to in order to obtain God’s promises for my life, for I do not enjoy suffering. But I know that if I somehow miss a turn and have to go around the block one extra time or two, it is not going to stop God from getting me there, for this is what He promised me:
Philippians 1:6 “Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.”
True deliverance, or circumcision of the heart begins, when we finally cross a threshold in our hearts that says: I belong to God, and I am fully committed to His will for my life, therefore nothing is going to keep me from fulfilling His will and purpose for my life.
When adversity comes our way, and our hearts are in tune with the words that Jesus speaks to us, which are spirit and truth—spiritual truth—we will know instantly if we are to resist the adversity with the sword of the spirit which is the Word of God, or if we are to relent and let the work of adversity work its way through, in the meanwhile we strengthen our faith while the persecution is crossing our path.
John 16:33 “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
We need to remember that often times deliverance and tribulation go hand in hand. Now why is that?
In the circumcision typology, the life-giving male semen gets corrupted as it comes in contact with the flesh, the foreskin, as it is spread abroad.
The two-fold covenant of circumcision with Abraham was given as a type for those who were entrusted with the propagation of God’s Word, that they were to keep it from contamination.
For the Jews who are the heirs of the physical promise—the Holy Land, the ritual was a physical act to be performed on every newborn Jewish boy on the eighth day. Paul infuses into the church the spiritual implication of the two-fold circumcision covenant that God made with Abraham.
Colossians 2:10-13 “And you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power. In Him you were also circumcised with the circumcision made without hands (spiritual circumcision), by putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses.”
What Paul is saying is that for those of us who are saved, being buried with Jesus in baptism at the moment of our spiritual rebirth, eight being the number that represents a new beginning, we were spiritually circumcised, as babes in Christ.
We are His body here on earth, the church, and it falls upon us to broadcast or propagate His Life-giving Word to a world that is barren.
But if that Life-giving Word is contaminated by the dead works of the flesh, it loses its power to raise those who are dead back to the spiritual life that was once promised to those who would believe.
Matthew 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.”
So, going back to our opening do we relent or resist question; the adversities and tribulations we are suffering, are they caused by our losing our saltiness or is it because of our saltiness that we bear then?
Your honest answer to that question will guide you into which path you need to take.
If you are being trampled underfoot by men, then it is time for you to let go of the flesh that is contaminating the promises of God for your life, and keeping them from coming to full fruition in you.
On the other hand, if you are being persecuted for taking a firm stand on the Word of God in this corrupt world, for salt is the antidote to corruption, then you should bear the tribulations gladly, for they are a sign of the effectiveness of your walk with Jesus Christ.
1 Peter 4:12-14 “Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory (your spiritual walk) and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified.”