BELIEVE NOT EVERY SPIRIT (PART I)
By Akin Ojumu
For the vast majority of Church folks, spiritual warfare is all about repelling demons sapping their health, stealing their wealth, sabotaging their success, stopping their progress, and stymieing their good fortune.
They believe, erroneously, that every ill-health is the work of demons and the reason their finances are in shambles is because of spiritual attack. Their misfortune, failure, and lack of progress they attribute to one demon or the other.
Consequently, they spend an inordinate amount of time binding and casting out demons. Having been fed with the fallacious idea that they have the power to command demons, they engage in all kinds of pseudo-profound melodrama and pseudo-spiritual histrionics while pretending to tell demons what to do or where to go.
Seeing that they don’t know better, they become easy targets for charlatans who pounce to exploit their ignorance with boasts of having demon slaying powers. Showing no mercy and lacking even a shred of conscience, these spiritual swindlers bleed their victims dry as they amass an unconscionable amount of wealth with which they build for themselves grandiose empires. Out of the ill-gotten gains of their soulless grift, the religious hustlers become nouveau-riche.
While the demon slayers busy themselves with the futile task of casting demons out of Spirit-filled Believers, the prince of demons prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking the next prey to devour. Preoccupied with fighting phantom enemies in their own imaginations, the Body of Christ has allowed Satan to go about his business of laying waste to the faith of many. Because Christians have abandoned the warfront where the real battle rages, the Devil enjoys free rein to wreak havoc in the Body of Christ.
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete.” (2 Corinthians 10:3-6).
There’s no question, the Body of Christ is engaged in an internecine warfare with the kingdom of darkness. Nevertheless, our spiritual warfare is not about chasing after demons, and neither is it about binding or casting out evil spirits. Anyone who claims to have the ability to cast out demons is boasting of powers God hasn’t given him. And such a person is engaged in a war God hasn’t sent him.
Apostle Paul, in his second letter to the Church at Corinth (2 Corinthians 10:3-6), describes in unmistakable terms the real war Satan has unleashed on God’s people. It is an existential war for the mind. The real battleground and the epicenter of the spiritual warfare is the mind.
“You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44).
Satan is the father of lies and is eternally at war against the saints of God. The ground zero for this war is the mind. Understanding that out of the mind flows the wellsprings of life, Satan unleashes his fury on the mind with the sole objective of planting his flag on the hills of our mind.
To achieve this strategic objective, Satan employs his true and tested tactics of chicanery and dissimulation. Cunningly, he muddies the water of faith and belief by creating myriads of false belief systems. Just so he can confuse and bemuse, he establishes a plethora of ideologies that are contrary to the precepts of God.
Satan’s false belief system is a fortress of speculations and a stronghold of lofty ideas raised up against the knowledge of God.
To be continued next time…