Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Attacking Satan

The Worlds At War
We are at war. Satan is attacking us. Most of the time this Mennonite pastor might recommend doing no harm to one’s enemy. However, there is one huge exception. We should give no place to Satan or his angels, and we should attack them at every side, allowing them no rest. We are at war with Satan, his attacks and his lies. We are soldiers in this war, granted authority from Jesus to attack him. Let us not rest until he is completely defeated. (Ephesians 6:12)

Our Authority Over Satan
Jesus had the authority to attack all of the judgements and attacks of Satan. After he died and rose from the dead by God’s power, Jesus gave every believer the authority to attack Satan and get rid of him out of the lives of every believer in Jesus. Satan has much power—we must admit that. He is allowed to judge everyone who has rebelled against God (which is everyone). But Jesus has granted us authority to attack Satan’s soldiers and to exile them from God’s kingdom. In this way, we must occupy the territory of every person who has committed themselves to Jesus. (Mark 16:17-18; Luke 10:19; I John 4:4)

Three Deliverers
It requires three deliverers to deliver someone from bondage. First, there must be the Spirit of Jesus in power there in the midst. Second, there must be a person who is mature and free from any Satanic attack—all footholds and Satanic lies are cleared from them already. Then there is the person who is attacked themselves. If the one being attacked is a believer, then it is absolutely necessary that they be a part of the deliverance.

It is more than possible—indeed, very likely—that a person, once delivered, will be attacked again by the same spirit. Only this time the spirit will be strengthened with other spirits to attack the person. This means that the one being attacked must be prepared to resist these spirits, ready to attack them as they come. The only way to be prepared for this attempt to regain ground, is to have the Holy Spirit filling one through the deliverance of Jesus. For this reason, I do not recommend delivering an unbeliever or someone who is not ready to commit themselves to Jesus. If one is unprepared for the attack that is bound to come, then it might be better not even to begin. The only exception is if the oppressed one has absolutely no control over themselves (such as in Mark 9:20-22). Then they should be delivered and then it should be strongly recommended that they commit themselves to Jesus.

Assisting an attack
Most of this instruction is for the person who is assisting the one who is oppressed. Usually the one who is oppressed is unable to attack Satan on their own. As you speak to evil spirits remember the following:

Do not ask questions of evil spirits unless absolutely necessary—evil spirits lie like we breathe.
Do not shout unless necessary—authority comes from Jesus, not presentation.
Do all things in the name of Jesus—He is the active authority, not you.
Never doubt God’s authority through Jesus.
If you don’t know what to do, stop and listen to God.
Allow the one you are assisting to enact the authority of Jesus as much as possible.
Never disrespect evil spirits, just get rid of them. (Jude 1:9-11)

Preparation for War
Be in prayer and in submission to God through Jesus
This is usually called “putting on the armor” after Ephesians 6. The one who is prepared to attack Satan is spiritually healthy in all ways. They should be confessed of their sin, filled with the Spirit, prepared to use God’s word, and walking in the righteousness of Christ. The one attacking Satan should probably go through the “Spiritual Health Checklist” to make sure all is right in their spiritual walk. If you are not right with God, prepared through Jesus and ready to have his authority come through you, Satan will only take this opportunity to make you stumble (Acts 19:13-16)

Reliance on God
To attack Satan, we must use the spiritual authority of God—we do not have enough spiritual authority to crush a pea, let alone a powerful demon. It is God who does the work, and we will be speaking words from the Spirit to attack the evil one. Thus, we must be ready to hear God and to rely on his authority and work. If not, we can accomplish nothing. (John 15:4-5)
Bind spirits

The evil spirits attacking the person might be unruly or creating confusion so they might not be cast out. If you see any manifestation of the evil spirits, command them to be quiet, in the name of Jesus. You can use words like this: “In the name of Jesus, I command you to be quiet. I bind you to silence and stillness, in Jesus name. You will no longer distract -” the one oppressed. This need not be done every time, but only if the spirits are being very disturbing. (Mark 1:34)

Undermining the Support
Before our attack, we must first undermine the position of Satan in a person’s life. First, we need to discover where Satan is attacking. Then, in order to resist Satan and his attacks, we must first submit to God through Jesus.

Discover the Manifestation
What is the indication of Satanic attack? In all probability, that is the reason the person is asking for help, but it is good to ask for other indications. Go over the Indications of Satanic Attack.

Discover the source
Satan doesn’t enter a person without a reason. There must be some significant sin in someone’s life or involvement in a false teaching or involvement in some occult activity. Again, look over the Indications of Satanic Attack to see if the one being attacked has opened themselves up to attack sometime in the past.

Take every thought captive
Make sure that the person seeking deliverance knows the truth of the gospel and of God’s purity. If they still are holding to false teaching or to sin that will separate them from God, show them the Scriptures that indicate God’s truth. (II Corinthians 10:2-6)

Commitment to Jesus
The one being attacked by Satan must at this point commit themselves to Jesus. If they have never done so, they should be baptized (Acts 2:38). If they have done so, then a verbal re-commitment is sufficient. “I devote myself, body, heart and soul, to the Lord Jesus Christ. I belong to him alone and will obey him as my Lord. I am the possession of God alone.” (Mark 16:16-17)

The Attack
Anyone who is committed to the Lord Jesus can command spirits to go. If you command in Jesus’ name, they must flee, as long as you are in the Lord. (Mark 16:17; Luke 10:19)
Rejection of spirits

The oppressed one should themselves reject both the manifestations and sources of Satanic attack. It can take this form: “I belong to the Lord Jesus, and I renounce the spirit of – in the name of Jesus.” Do this for every area—present or past—that was shown to be an issue on the Indication sheet.

Spirit commanded to leave
Either the oppressed one or the assistant can command the spirits to leave, but both must be involved in the command. One speaks, while the other verbally agrees. It can take this form: “In the name of Jesus, I command the spirit of – to be gone, and to attack no one else. I command you to go to Jesus and go where he commands you. Leave in the name of Jesus.”

After evil spirits leave a person, Jesus describes them like an “empty house”. This house is cleaned, but the spirit will return and attack again, if they are allowed. Only this time the attack will be stronger and more difficult to get rid of (Matthew 12:43-45). The way to avoid this is to not allow the person to be empty. They need to be filled with Jesus’ teaching and with the Holy Spirit.

Request for Holy Spirit to fill
Immediately after the evil spirits are cast away, then we should ask the Holy Spirit to come in and fill the person. The one just released from Satan should be taught to pray for the Spirit daily. (Luke 11:13)

Discipleship and Accountability
Finally, if at all possible, the person should be partnered with a mature brother or sister who will keep them accountable in Jesus, forsaking the ways of Satan, growing in the truth of Jesus and encouraging them to love and good deeds. (Hebrews 10:24-25)

Satan has no right to attack believers in Jesus—
And we have the authority to command him to go.

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