Thursday, February 2, 2012

Binding and Loosing

“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.” (Matthew 18:18)

Many of us have not been under attack, but rather living under the attack of the devil, and for some it hasn’t been days, weeks or months, but years. In fact, in some instances it has been going on for so long that it is no longer recognized as an attack, but instead it has become a way of life that has been accepted as “normal.” It has become a stronghold. Some people have been trying everything they know to break the cycle of oppression and bondage in their lives only to get more frustrated as time goes on. The good news is that it may not be as difficult as you have thought.

A stronghold is something that has developed over a period of time, through some form of demonic, deceptive influence. They can exist in families and generational lines, cities, regions or nations; principalities and other ruling spirits can effectively stop a move of God and blind the minds of whole territories of people, if we don’t pray properly and exercise our God-given authority. That may not sound “religiously correct,” but it is true nonetheless (II Corinthians 4:4, Daniel 10:12-13). A stronghold is an area where the devil has gained a lasting influence, and he will guard it judiciously. However, Jesus has given us the keys of the Kingdom of heaven, and there is a key that will unlock whatever has been locked in our lives (Matthew 16:19). Binding and loosing is one of those keys.

Binding and loosing accomplishes exactly what Jesus said it would do; it binds things that are out of order with the will of God, and looses things that should be in operation. God has entrusted this authority and responsibility to all of His people, not leaving us defenseless in a spiritual battle. The devil is a spirit, and he employs spiritual pressure and influence over our lives; it is therefore important that we understand our spiritual authority through binding and loosing.

While it is true that not every problem in our lives is directly caused by the devil, it is also true that whatever the solution is, he will do his best to keep us in the dark about it through deception. Binding and loosing, many times, will break the deceptive influence in the situation, allowing us to see what is truly going on, and will release the grace of God into the situation (Romans 5:2). This enables us to walk in the freedom that Jesus paid for.

Many Christians have no idea that this type of authority even exists, and since many pastors and leaders don’t understand it themselves, they are unable or unwilling to teach it to their congregations. Others believe that this type of authority is for a select “few” preachers, ministers, “priests” or apostles, so of course that excludes them. Did you know that the devil will always tell you that you are part of the excluded majority that will not receive whatever it is that you desire from God? “Sure, God heals, but it’s not His will to heal YOU!” “Speaking in tongues are not for everyone!” (And of course you are the one that it’s “not for!”) But Jesus has freely given us all things that pertain to life and godliness.

Some are afraid of spiritual things because they have encountered spiritual “flakes,” and have associated anything spiritual with people like that. It seems that many of our Spirit-filled churches are spawning grounds for such weirdos, but God doesn’t want us to be weird. He wants us to be firmly planted and rooted in the Word of God, which is the most practical and solid thing that exists in our universe (or any other for that matter). Binding and loosing is accomplished through faith, by issuing decrees (Job 22:28, Mark 11:23). There are times when we initiate this through simple faith in God’s written promises (His Word), and there are other times when we are moved by the Holy Spirit through the gift of faith, a supernatural impartation of the Spirit, and given the ability to believe what we would not normally be able to believe.

God has an established order for every system that He has created, whether it is a family, church, region or nation, and that order has been predetermined and set before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 2:10). It is our responsibility to hear from God and receive a “blueprint” of His plan, and begin to “call those things that be not as though they were” (Mark 11:24, Romans 4:17). In other words, what we see through the eyes of faith, we declare it as so until it is. This is what God did throughout all the Old Testament; through the mouth of all His prophets, He kept calling those things that were not as though they were (Speaking of the promised Messiah) (Luke 1:70, Acts 3:21). We declare by the words of our mouths, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven…” (Matthew 6:9-10) We pray after this manner. We build the spiritual foundation this way (John 8:56, Matthew 16:28, Job 22:28, Romans 4:17), and we wield a weapon at the same time that we build, in order to keep the devil off the project (Genesis 15:11, Nehemiah 4:17).

I was at a truck stop last year near Seattle, Washington, and the parking lot was so full that I had to “create” a parking spot, blocking several trucks from getting out. I had arrived about five o’clock in the evening, and figured that if someone needed to leave sometime during the night, they would wake me up and I would move (a practice done periodically when truck stops are full). However, several hours later, a rather loud, demanding, and aggressive man got out of one of the trucks and knocked on my door. He told me that he was leaving at six o’clock in the morning, and that I needed to move my truck so he could get out. I informed him that since I was leaving at four o’clock, there would be no problem, and I would be out of his way before he had to leave. However, he adamantly insisted that I move immediately, but I calmly refused, and explained again to him that I would be gone first, and if for any reason he had to leave earlier, he could wake me up in the morning and I would move. The man became more agitated and stormed away from my truck.

This was only the beginning however, as he began to knock on the doors of other trucks, and one by one, the other drivers would get out of their trucks and comply with his demands. He was ordering them to move their trucks all over the lot (He was trying to rearrange the whole parking lot, I think), and it became mass confusion. I was amazed that so many were listening to him, however not all, and you could feel the atmosphere getting very tense among the drivers involved. It became apparent after about forty five minutes that a fight was becoming inevitable, and the situation was about to turn very ugly. Then suddenly, faith rose up in my heart, and I spoke to the spirit; “I bind you Satan!” “I bind the spirit of strife and contention in Jesus’ name!” Within five minutes, the atmosphere changed, and fifteen minutes later, everyone was back in their trucks. It was quiet and peaceful for the rest of the night, and what could have been a bad situation, was resolved in a moment of time (With no police, and no one going to jail).

These types of things touch every area of our lives; Satan uses deception in order to establish strongholds, and therefore when we bind his activities, not only are the evil spirits bound, but truth is released into the hearts of people to counter the deception that has been planted. God will open the eyes of our understanding in order for us to know what to do if there is further action required on our part. This is also true as we speak to mountains in our lives (Mark 11:22-24). As a result of our faith, the disorder in our lives will be revealed to us, and the grace of God will be released into the situation. Our faith will always go to the root of the issue (Mark 11:20).

Although these things are simple in concept, their application is not always easy, because many times it demands change on our part. With wisdom comes responsibility and accountability, and some things are so “rooted,” that the foundation must be completely destroyed and re-laid. This takes humility, effort, focus, diligence and patience on our part, and most importantly, faith. The mind must be renewed in order to think and believe the way that God thinks (Mark 4:14-20).

Binding and Loosing is one of the many weapons that we have at our disposal. Whatever it is that the God has told us to do, we can be sure that the devil will come down upon it and attempt to thwart the work, but God has given us all the tools that we need to be overcomers and more than conquerors in everything that we do for the Kingdom of God.