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Living victoriously with the Lord’s Help

Charles Thorell

There are people and issues that can irritate me on a daily basis but who doesn’t suffer from that? Depending on the variety of emotions and circumstances confronting me, my life can be calm or a roller coaster ride. When things are going against me, it is very easy to blame others for my ups and downs even though I know the problem lies with me. This is what the apostle Paul had to say on this matter:

“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)” (2 Corinthians 10:3)

A number of years ago I had a job working with flooring materials. My duties involved loading a truck with big rolls of carpet. They were long and heavy, so I was using a fork lift with a pole to get the job done. Let me give you a mental picture of this: think about the roll of paper towels in your kitchen lying horizontally on the countertop. Now if you were to grab a long handled wooden spoon, you could stick the handle into the hollow cardboard roll and lift it up. This is what I was doing by positioning the pole into the hole, pushing it in, lifting it up and driving it to the truck. It required some skill but was relatively easy. On this occasion the cardboard tube in the roll of carpet had collapsed in the middle somewhere making it impossible for me to slide my pole in. Each time I tried, the carpet just got pushed back further in the rack. My frustration turned into anger as this finicky roll of carpet refused to do my bidding. After positioning and repositioning the fork lift a number of times, I soon swore and started praising the devil. No sooner had the words come out of my mouth than the Holy Spirit was right there with the following Scripture:

“Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.” (Romans 6:12)

I remember at the time that this was a verse I had not memorized and yet it was so clear in my mind! God and His holy angels, as well as Satan and his demons were all watching me. When I cursed in anger, I can imagine God just shaking His head and saying, “tsk, tsk tsk, you shouldn’t have done that.” He then sent the Holy Spirit to remind me of my problem and the curse I had brought upon myself. I had opened the door for evil spirits to oppress me, but God had a solution. I repented, asked the Lord for guidance and was able to finish the job. When I got home that evening, I opened up my Bible and read the whole chapter including this verse:

“Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.” (Romans 6:13)

It is important to realize there will always be circumstances that will give rise to varying emotions. There will be days where you are late for an appointment and can’t find your keys. You’re in such a hurry that you take off and realize that you forgot your wallet or purse and have to go back. When you finally get back in the car and down the road you hit every single red light along the way? How about your computer breaking down or being disrespected by a co-worker or family member? Have you had these experiences? I have. In these kinds of situations, it’s really easy to lose your temper and praise the Devil. All these circumstances can lead to you reacting in anger and doing something that grieves the Holy Spirit. (Ephesians 4:29-32; James 1:19-20)

My reason for mentioning these things is that until the day we die, there will always be an instance where an evil spirit provides you with the opportunity to be insulted and hurt. If you think about it, we live on a prison planet where Satan and his demons have been honing their skills for over six thousand years. Each evil spirit has a specialty that they perfected long before you and I ever arrived on the planet. It is therefore important to realize that evil spirits will always be around and active in our lives until we go home to be with the Lord. The important part is how we deal with the situation when a demon attacks.

Think about the relationship between a parent and child; if the child throws a fit, the parent needs to remain calm and discipline them. After all, what good can an emotional and angry parent do? The parent needs to rise above the circumstance and take dominion over the child. I really like the word “dominion;” for Christians, it means that we have the right to command evil spirits in the authority of Jesus name, and more importantly, they have to obey! There are countless battles fought each day in the minds of men and women all over the world. Before we can go and take care of the world, we need to deal with the battle in our minds first. This is where we declare to the Devil, “In Jesus name, I will not be defeated any longer!” We need to use the weapon made available to us by the Lord to “cast down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5)

I know that if you were to go to a secular therapist, they would tell you to be positive and take charge of the situation. If you’re angry with someone, walk away and talk with them when you’ve cooled down. They are full of good advice but we can’t ignore the spiritual dynamic that will cause us to fail if we only rely on ourselves. It is imperative to have the Holy Ghost power operating in our lives! The disciples of Jesus were relatively weak-kneed before they were baptized in the fire of the Holy Ghost; then they were changed men, who boldly proclaimed the Gospel against much opposition. Oh they still encountered problems and were persecuted by the Devil but they were strong when they surrendered to the leading of the Holy Ghost. The baptism of the Holy Ghost and constant infillings are an essential part of being saved and walking in victory.

The apostle Paul was a great man of God but even he struggled with problems. He repeatedly asked the Lord to remove a particular affliction, but God replied: “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.”  (2 Corinthians 12:9a)

The Bible doesn’t say how long Paul thought about this but we do know his attitude afterwards toward this problem.

“Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9b-10)

A therapist will tell you to think positively, this is good, but that alone will ultimately doom you to failure. Paul realized that the secret to success was not solely through positive thinking but recognizing his inherent frailness and relying upon the Lord as his source of strength. Secular counselors have removed Christ from the equation; they encourage working out your problems through sheer willpower and are therefore working at a disadvantage. If you take the advice found in the Bible and strip God out of it, it is powerless. You and I can only do so much by ourselves, but with Christ we can do anything and everything with no limitations! (Philippians 4:13)

There will always be an evil spirit waiting to do you some harm. They can attack you in your mind but they can also come at you in the form of another human being who is being manipulated by them. It is important to recognize that we need to rise above the problem by “casting down imaginations” in Jesus name. In doing so, we “bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” I am reminded how when Jesus had finished His forty day fast, the Devil tried to entice Him, but Jesus just responded with “It is written…” Using Jesus as our example, we need to rise above the circumstances and take dominion!

Most Christians ignore verse six because they don’t know what to do with it. “And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.” (2 Corinthians 10:6) It simply means that when we are walking with the Lord in holiness and obedience, we can go after the demons with a vengeance. Jesus obviously had respect in the spirit world because the evil spirits obeyed Him, not because they wanted to, but because they had no other choice. When we bring our battles “into captivity,” we recognize that it is not of our power but the redemptive work of Jesus on the cross and it is through Him that we can be strong.

There will also be times when we get so locked up by the Devil and his demons that we just can’t get ourselves free. We know what we need to do but we just can’t mobilize ourselves. That is when you need to have faithful brothers and sisters in Christ, willing to stand in the gap and pray you out! Jesus never intended for us to be lone rangers, rather, we are a body that rallies to help those in need. (1 Corinthians 12:12-27)

As Pastor John recently exhorted in a sermon, “Expect miracles from God; live and walk in the supernatural realm. Never look at circumstances, the bigger the obstacle, the bigger the miracle will be!”

If anything I’ve written is new or if there are questions that have arisen, I would like to recommend the following resources:

THE BIBLE

If you don’t have a Bible, get one! Out of all the materials and resources I mention, this is by far the most important one. Nothing can replace an intimate knowledge of Scripture. A Christian who doesn’t know what the Bible says will be carried about by every whim of false doctrine, including the thoughts that Satan will put in your mind.

The Baptism with the Holy Spirit

If you want to know more about the Holy Ghost, this book is excellent. R.A. Torrey said it was a great turning point in his life when he decided the baptism with the Holy Spirit was an experience for today and set about obtaining it. The Bible, if carefully studied, will give you a view of this wondrous blessing that is perfectly clear and remarkably definite.

In clear and simple language Torrey teaches: What the baptism with the Holy Spirit is and what it does; Its necessity for the believer; How this experience can be obtained; The need for re-filling with the Holy Spirit; How spiritual power is lost.

Raised from the Dead

 Rick Madison was involved in a head-on collision in which he received numerous broken bones, a torn aortic artery, a ruptured spleen and a punctured lung. He remained in a coma for 27 days with the doctors advising his family to make funeral arrangements on three separate occasions because it looked so grim.

However, there were prayer warriors in his family who believed Jesus could raise him up. God raised him out of a coma and later he walked out of a wheelchair. He was completely delivered from drugs, alcohol, and tobacco and filled with the Holy Ghost. He is now a full-time evangelist who travels the world to tell the remarkable story of how God raised him from his deathbed and made him into a new person.

This is a thrilling account of God’s grace and power. Listen to Rick’s testimony on the accompanying CD. Rick’s enthusiasm and fire for the Lord is contagious, for he truly knows there is nothing impossible for God!

How to Live Like a King’s Kid

This is not a book about organized religion but a personal relationship with a living God who wants to interact with you daily. Harold Hill said his life was a big, fat, miserable success until he learned how to live as a child of the King.

You are a child of the King! King's Kids are God's children - princes and princesses in the royal family of the King of kings. If you're a believer, you're a true King's Kid. Harold Hill shows you how to live like a King's Kid in every aspect of your life. Among other things, you will learn how to:

·         Start Over

·         Succeed in Everything You Do

·         Minister Healing to Yourself and Others

·         Be Happy at All Times, Even When You're in a Traffic Jam

·         Pray Without Ceasing

·         Forgive Yourself and Others

·         Get Your Whole Family Saved

Hill writes, "Let's go. Let's walk and possess the land. Inherit the Kingdom prepared for you. Live like a King's Kid. In the here and now." This fun-to-read but highly informative book will show you exactly what you need to do. So get ready for a whole new adventure, as you learn to enjoy the inheritance God has provided for you.

"I knew the Number One hindrance to victorious living is the 'Paralysis of Analysis' caused by a sick computer riding astride our shoulders, the rational commonsense mind, the Educated Idiot Box, the EIB."


Volume 4, 2008