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Weapons of Spirit War

Weapons of Spirit War

September 11, 2001, was an assault from hell, planned and executed by demon spirits, just like other attacks worldwide—Paris, London, San Diego, Boston, Las Vegas, and New York. The continuing terrorist attacks in Israel, and indeed worldwide, are a result of the same dark spiritual powers. These powers cannot be defeated without prayer. Praying saints are God’s agents to carry out His will on earth. Israel, the United States, and all other nations are helpless without prayer.

If Jesus said that He could do nothing without prayer, then we surely cannot hope to accomplish anything of eternal value and significance without prayer. It was President Abraham Lincoln who said: “I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom and that of all about me seemed insufficient for that day.” A Christian who refuses to pray is like a swimmer who refuses to enter the water. All the talk in the world about swimming will only bring skepticism and laughter if he never dives in and begins to swim.

For a Christian to refuse to make prayer his or her number one priority is like saying to the world’s vilest dictator, “We have laid down our weapons of warfare. You win!” Our weapons of war and our Commander in Chief are waiting to win the battle; we only need to speak the Word. God has given us the weapons we need to successfully war against the enemy of our souls (Ephesians 6:13–17), the means to become effective intercessors, and the weapons to win a spirit war.

“Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

Nothing Takes the Place of Prayer

Nothing Takes the Place of Prayer

You and I cannot make contact with God without prayer. If we don’t make that connection, no matter how sincere our intentions, we will not see a change in the circumstances of our lives. Pastor and author Dr. Charles Stanley wrote of prayer: ”I would say to anybody: the greatest lesson you can learn is to learn to live by faith on your face before God. You can face anything, no matter what it is.”

God said, “I’ll never leave you or forsake you,” but if I’m too busy then I’m not listening to Him, I’m not waiting for Him, I’m not expecting Him to do something. I think people face a lot of circumstances and go through a lot of heartache and trouble that would be unnecessary if they would just stop and listen. Often, I think we are like little children—not so much hard of hearing as we are hard of listening. We hear, but we do not necessarily heed His warnings.

Learning to hear God’s voice from Scripture—learning the way He expressed Himself to the men and women of old—teaches us how to distinguish the sound of His voice from our own and helps us avoid the deceptive whispers of the Enemy. My journey to wholeness in Christ has been painful at times, but it is not an unfamiliar path. I meet people all the time who feel that in order to get God’s attention, they must do more, work harder, talk louder, and be smarter, but God tells us that in order to hear Him, we must wait and seek and listen closely.

Seeking first the Kingdom and His righteousness leads us to increased faith and less worry. Peace and worry cannot occupy the same space. One forces the other out. Instead of doing more, we must learn to worship at His feet. Our prayer should be, “Help me to wait patiently for the very best You have for my life.” God places watchmen on the walls of our lives. I call them Esthers and Nehemiahs…people such as Corrie ten Boom and, perhaps, people like you. The world has figuratively been scratching its collective head trying to find an answer to the ongoing crises we face. That answer is in your hands and mine…we just have to hear from God, through prayer and intercession.

God Uses Flawed People

God Uses Flawed People

Moses had been called to lead a company of people that continually grumbled, complained, and finally mutinied. It was not surprising that eventually Moses’ patience reached its breaking point, and in anger, he failed to follow God’s instructions. He disobeyed God at that one crucial juncture, showing a lack of trust in God’s ability to provide, and his punishment was that he would not be allowed to enter into the promised land. Instead, that honor would belong to his successor, Joshua.
However, God did take Moses to the top of the mountain and allow him to see the other side—the land that flowed with milk and honey. Then Moses died and the Lord buried him. As we read in Deuteronomy 34:5–6: “So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord. And He buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth Peor; but no one knows his grave to this day.”
Despite his missteps, Moses’ life was characterized by obedience. He led a nation of rebellious, dissatisfied, disobedient, quarrelsome, and complaining people through the wilderness to the banks of the Jordan River. Through all the ups and downs, the years of wandering in the desert, Moses held high the name of Jehovah-Nissi—God our Banner. It was a banner of encouragement “to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11b).
Moses was able to defeat the forces of the Enemy because he was submissive to God’s will. He delivered his people from the chains of darkness and degradation because he complied with Jehovah’s instructions. Moses’ obedience and trust won him unfailing favor with God, and he is still known as a hero of the faith. This is not because he was perfect, but because he was obedient. All of us fail, sin, and fall short. Yet in His grace and mercy, God forgives us and still uses us for His work. Nothing in the past should deter you from obeying God today. You and I can help usher in that renewal through prayer.
Obedience, Praise, and Power

Obedience, Praise, and Power

Imagine how Joshua must felt have when God ordered him to have the children of Israel march around Jericho for seven days. He was still new in the job of leading the Jewish people, and he had the unenviable task of following Moses in that role. Now he was facing a city that he had no hope of defeating militarily, and God had ordered him to do something that didn’t make sense in the natural.
Could the leader of the Israelites secretly have wondered if it was an exercise in futility? Jehovah had given the people specific instructions regarding the city that now stood between the sojourners and their promised land, and the plan must have seemed fraught with pitfalls. The people would be exposed to possible attack from those inside the city’s walls. They would be mocked and ridiculed; what good would that do? Marching around in a circle?! They were also to carry their trumpets, yet not utter a sound.
“So it was, when Joshua had spoken to the people, that the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the Lord advanced and blew the trumpets, and the ark of the covenant of the Lord followed them. The armed men went before the priests who blew the trumpets, and the rear guard came after the ark, while the priests continued blowing the trumpets. Now Joshua had commanded the people, saying, ‘You shall not shout or make any noise with your voice, nor shall a word proceed out of your mouth, until the day I say to you, ‘Shout!’ Then you shall shout.’” —Joshua 6:8–10
After six days of what surely must have felt like utter nonsense, they were to follow the same routine—but with two notable exceptions: They were to march seven times, and then the people were to shout in praise to Jehovah for delivering the city into their hands. Obedience was the key to moving the hand of God, even when we do not understand what He is doing. When we obey Him in a spirit of praise, He works in ways that man cannot understand—or stand against.
Why Jerusalem Matters

Why Jerusalem Matters

Jerusalem matters. It is vital to God’s plan for the past, present, and future of our world. All of the land, including Jerusalem, was a gift from Jehovah, and the ownership of Israel’s land is non-negotiable. In March 2002, Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) addressed the issue of Israel’s right to her land: “Every new archaeological dig supports the fact that the Jews have had a presence in Israel for 3,000 years—coins, cities, pottery, other cultural artifacts. The Jews’ claim predates the claim of any other people in the region. The ancient Philistines are extinct as are other ancient peoples. They do not have the unbroken line the Israelis have. Ownership is and will be in the hands of God’s Chosen People—forever.
When you sign your name on a check, you represent that you possess the amount indicated on that check. God wrote His Name in Jerusalem, and He has the power and authority over that which His name represents. On July 30, 1980, the Israeli Knesset voted to affirm a united Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel. Shortly afterward, I had the privilege of speaking with the man who would become my dear friend, Prime Minister Menachem Begin. We discussed the vastness of the territory held by Israel’s enemies. For instance, at that time, Arab dictators controlled 13,486,861 square kilometers in the Middle East, and Israel controlled 20,770. The population of Israel was roughly 7.8 million, compared to the population of 300 million living in the surrounding Arab countries.
The odds against Israel are decidedly skewed. The Arab nations demanding a Palestinian state
are represented by 21 separate countries. Several arguments have been offered as to why
Palestinian Authority head, Mahmoud Abbas, continues to reject any and all offers of a Palestinian State. Chiefly, formal statehood would limit the ability of the PA and of Hamas in Gaza to commit acts of terrorism. It would rob them of the cover they now enjoy when it comes to terroristic acts against the Jewish people in Israel. It is obvious, when at some point in each round of negotiations the Palestinians cry foul, pick up their marbles, and go home.
To this day, the same countries trying to foist a Palestinian state off on Israel do not recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The Holy City is the symbol of all that Israel represents in our world. Teddy Kollek, Jerusalem’s first mayor wrote: “Jerusalem, this beautiful, golden city, is the heart and soul of the Jewish people. One cannot live without a heart and soul. If you want one single word to symbolize all of Jewish history, that word is Jerusalem.”
A world map drawn in 1581 features Jerusalem at its very center with the then-known continents of the world surrounding it. It resembles a ship’s propeller with the shaft in the center being Jerusalem. Another analogy is of Jerusalem as the navel of the earth.
Jerusalem belongs to God despite the detractors who wish to offer the city up as appeasement to her avowed enemies. Satan would dance gleefully should Israel be forced to make that move. When the Messiah returns, it will be to the City of David, not to Al-Quds (the Arabic name for Jerusalem). We are the Jerusalem Prayer Team—the largest prayer movement in history—dedicated to fighting the spirit war for the future of the Holy City, the Jewish people, and the nation of Israel.