Spiritual Warfare, Testimonies

Spiritual Authority in Warfare

This is a picture of a Bible with rays of sunshine and the words "Spiritual Authority in Warfare" and "What gives you the right to fight?"

It’s been said that the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world that he doesn’t exist. As Christians, however, we should know better. The Bible tells us plainly that we fight a real enemy, but I’m always amazed when my brothers and sisters in Christ ignore the war. Some say they don’t want to give glory to the devil by even acknowledging him. Others say, “Not everything bad that happens is because of a demon, you know.” But the Bible says in Ephesians 6:12 that when we are “wrestling,” it’s against spiritual wickedness. Those forces do exist, and the Bible has given us the means to fight against them. This week I believe God sent me into a battle. He showed me that Christians have spiritual authority and that we have the privilege and responsibility to use it against the enemy.

Called to Battle with Spiritual Authority

“Who goeth a warfare any time at his own charges?”

1 Corinthians 9:7a

Moses was called to fight a battle for the Lord. In Exodus 4, God told him to go to Egypt to deliver the children of Israel out of the hands of Pharaoh. His only weapon was the walking stick he carried, a symbol of the authority God had given him. With that one staff, Moses brought the ten plagues to Egypt, parted the Red Sea, and brought water from a rock. He used the spiritual authority that God had given him, and he did that by stretching out his hand.

As blood-bought, born-again Christians, we also have a staff. It’s the Bible. 2 Corinthians 10:4 tells us that our weapons are spiritual and effective for dismantling the “strongholds” of the enemy. Ephesians 6:11 tells us that when we put on the armor of God, we will be able to stand against his forces, and Ephesians 6:17 names the Word of God as our only offensive weapon, our sword. In Matthew 4 and Luke 4, Jesus used the Scriptures to fight the devil who came to tempt him in the wilderness, and in James 4:7 we learn the secret to making the enemy leave us alone. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” We submit to God when we believe what the Word of God says. We resist him when we use our weapon, the Word of God, against him. 

Our Own Spiritual Authority

This week, I found myself in a situation in which the Lord was leading me to engage in warfare. It was outside my usual sphere of influence, so I wasn’t sure of my authority. I started looking for resources, and almost immediately on YouTube a video popped up in my suggested list. It was a Derek Prince video entitled “The Most Effective Way to Release God’s Authority Over a Situation.” I thought, “Wow, Lord! I’m listening!” 

The bottom line was exactly what I said above. As Christians, we have the honor and authority to use the Word of God to fight. 

“Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds. Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand; To execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people; To bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron; To execute upon them the judgment written: this honour have all His saints. Praise ye the Lord.”

Psalm 149:5-9

The Bible is the two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12). We wield it when we execute (release) the judgments of God that are already written in the Bible by speaking the Word of God out loud in belief under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. It’s stretching out our hands. 

Note: This is NOT “Name It and Claim It.” It isn’t about speaking our own ideas or desires and expecting them to come true. (I believe that is a form of witchcraft and self-idolatry since only God can speak things into being that are not.) “Proclaiming” is speaking ONLY God’s Word in faith and under the direction of the Holy Spirit of God. It’s swinging our sword.

My Battle Plan

Once I understood that I had the authority in the situation, I needed to know where God wanted me to point my staff. For over two months, I had felt led to pray against strongholds and curses in this area. After hearing Psalm 149:8, I thought about the binding of the strong man from Matthew 12:29. “Or else how can one enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house.”

I felt like this was the direction I needed to go. Next, I found another Derek Prince video called “Discover the Satanic Strong Man Over Your Situation.” In it, he talked about a time in which his family get-togethers were strained. God showed him he had a strong man of self-righteousness over the family. As soon as he bound the strong man, his family was able to meet in perfect harmony. Of course, he had no idea that was an issue until God revealed it to him. 

So, I went to my prayer closet and asked God to give me a word of knowledge in a dream to know the strong man I would be fighting the next day. I even contacted a few brothers and sisters in Christ to pray for me to receive this word. That night, I dreamed the same dream three times. Each time, I believed that I KNEW the name of the spirit that had a hold over the situation, but each time when I woke up, I couldn’t remember what it was. I decided to fast breakfast and lunch and go, believing that God would reveal it in His time.

Proclaiming the Word

When I got to the location, I prayed in agreement with the two other believers who had the technical authority there. We prayed that the Lord would direct my words and actions. Then I started by proclaiming by faith the Word of God. These were the scriptures I used to establish authority and to verbalize my faith in God and the promises in His Word.

God Gives Us Authority

  • 2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.”
  • Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”
  • Romans 13:1 “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.”
  • Luke 10:19 “Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.”

Our Position and Praise

  • Ephesians 2:6 “And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”
  • Psalm 149 “Praise ye the Lord. Sing unto the Lord a new song, and his praise in the congregation of saints. Let Israel rejoice in him that made him: let the children of Zion be joyful in their King. Let them praise his name in the dance: let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp. For the Lord taketh pleasure in his people: he will beautify the meek with salvation. Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds. Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand. To execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people; To bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron. To execute upon them the judgment written: this honour have all his saints. Praise ye the Lord.”
  • 1 John 4:4 “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”

We Have Been Given the Power to Fight

  • Matthew 18:18-20 “Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”
  • Mark 16:17-18 “And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues. They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
  • 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 “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.) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”
  • Ephesians 6:10-12 “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

We Just Have to Have Faith

  • Matthew 17:20-21 “ … If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.”
  • James 4:7 “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”

Where God Sends, God Equips

  • Isaiah 54:17 “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.
  • Psalm 35:1-3 “Plead my cause, O Lord, with them that strive with me: fight against them that fight against me. Take hold of shield and buckler, and stand up for mine help. Draw out also the spear, and stop the way against them that persecute me: say unto my soul, I am thy salvation.”
  • Deuteronomy 28:7 “The Lord shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways.”
  • Deuteronomy 33:25-27 “Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be. There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, who rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, ‘Destroy them.'”

Then I Asked the Lord to Lead Me

“But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. Or else how can one enter into a strong man’s house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house.”

Matthew 12:28-29

After that, I gave a general list of spirits that might be in action over the situation and bound them and demanded they leave in the name of Jesus. Then I got quiet and asked the Lord to give me the name of the spirit that was the strong man. All I remember is thinking that at least a couple of the names that popped into my mind were not what I would have expected, but I honestly can’t tell you what I said; I have completely forgotten. 

I interpreted this to mean that the name of the spirit wasn’t important, but that God had let me know that it had been dispatched. The only thing left for me to do was to thank God and to praise Him! The next day, God confirmed the victory!

Spiritual Authority to Use the Word of God

Moses didn’t just pray for God to move. He took hold of his staff and pointed it at the situation that was in direct opposition to the people and purposes of God. He used God’s authority to actively remove the hinderances. As believers, we too have a rod in our hands. We can pray for the Lord to reveal to us which Scriptures to speak over our situations and for Him to give us our battle plans when a more direct approach is necessary. Our adversary is a defeated foe, but sin and unbelief open the door for him to work in our fallen world. Ultimately, the battle is the Lord’s, but He chose us to be His soldiers (2 Timothy 2:3). We have spiritual authority – and the privilege and duty – to fight for ourselves and others until Jesus returns.

We sang this song in church the day after my experience. “I’m On the Battlefield for My Lord.”

If you like articles about spiritual warfare, try Spiritual Warfare: A Defeated Foe. In it, God used an object lesson to teach me about the only power the enemy has over us. Or, try  5 Lessons About Spiritual Warfare from Boxing. Please sign up to receive my blog in your email. Also, check out my YouTube Channel where I read the blogs out loud. I also have a playlist of hymns from my church.

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