This month, we are covering a seemingly simple concept that has powerful, revelatory, and wide ranging applications: Right-Right vs Right-Wrong...Right WHAT-Right HOW/WHY vs. Right WHAT-Wrong (or NO) HOW/WHY.
In the previous post, we looked at the Disciples' examples of Spiritual Warfare:
We have seen several accounts of Jesus participating in Spiritual Warfare. In each instance, Jesus made a Statement. He stated a will for something that was unable to state a will or act apart from its nature.
In today's example, the Disciples followed Jesus' example. However, in these examples we get a greater understanding of the role of FAITH...the understanding and experience that leads to actions.
Remember, Spiritual Warfare depends on a person's ability to use WORDS and SENTENCES...AND the person's understanding and experience with the WORDS and SENTENCES that are stated are also critical.
Today, we will look at examples involving Paul...
SPIRITUAL WARFARE: PAUL
Paul was one of the few successful participants of Spiritual Warfare that had Spiritual Warfare successfully applied TO him!
The Book of Acts documented that Saul persecuted the church. In chapter 9, Paul's "Damascus Road" experience was presented. Jesus appeared to Saul and spoke. Saul was blinded and led into Damascus to wait.
"10 Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and the Lord said unto him in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I am here, Lord.
11 And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go to the street which is called Straight, and inquire in the house of Judas for one named Saul, a man of Tarsus: for behold, he prayeth;
12 and he hath seen a man named Ananias coming in, and laying his hands on him, that he might receive his sight."
Notice that Saul was praying. Also, Saul had seen a man named Ananias lay hands on him that he might receive his sight. Saul's faith was being built. Ananias' faith was being built. However...
"13 But Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard from many of this man, how much evil he did to thy saints at Jerusalem:
14 and here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call upon thy name.
15 But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles and kings, and the children of Israel:
16 for I will show him how many things he must suffer for my name's sake."
Ananias expressed his concerns. The Lord helped build Ananias' faith by referencing Justice. Saul had done evil things and now he would suffer many things...
"17 And Ananias departed, and entered into the house; and laying his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, who appeared unto thee in the way which thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mayest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Spirit."
This Statement was a faith building statement. This Statement helped Saul have more faith that Ananias was sent to restore Saul's sight. This Statement was NOT the Spiritual Warfare statement for someone else's will. Yesterday, we saw that healings would occur when this faith building Statement was made first, followed by a Spiritual Warfare Statement.
"18 And straightway there fell from his eyes as it were scales, and he received his sight; and he arose and was baptized;
19 and he took food and was strengthened. And he was certain days with the disciples that were at Damascus.
20 And straightway in the synagogues he proclaimed Jesus, that he is the Son of God."
Saul was healed and the story followed the pattern we have seen throughout this Series. However, we were missing the Spiritual Warfare Statement. Was it not recorded? Did Ananias say it?
Much later in the Book of Acts, Paul (formerly known as Saul) retold the story...
"12 And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, well reported of by all the Jews that dwelt there,
13 came unto me, and standing by me said unto me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And in that very hour I looked up on him."
THERE was the Spiritual Warfare Statement: Brother Saul, receive thy sight.
Saul was the subject of the Statement. Ananias spoke a will for Saul.
Again, Saul became known as Paul. Here was an example of Paul doing Spiritual Warfare...
"8 And at Lystra there sat a certain man, impotent in his feet, a cripple from his mother's womb, who never had walked.
9 The same heard Paul speaking, who, fastening eyes upon him, and seeing that he had faith to be made whole,
10 said with a loud voice, Stand upright on thy feet. And he leaped up and walked.
11 And when the multitude saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voice, saying in the speech of Lycaonia, The gods are come down to us in the likeness of men."
This story was very similar to the Peter and John story from yesterday's post.
1. Paul fastened his eyes on the man.
2. Paul saw that the man had faith to be healed.
3. Paul stated a will for the man.
4. The man was healed
5. The multitude benefited from the healing and had an emotional response.
Let's look again at the example we have been referencing all last month:
"16 And it came to pass, as we were going to the place of prayer, that a certain maid having a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much gain by soothsaying.
17 The same following after Paul and us cried out, saying, These men are servants of the Most High God, who proclaim unto you the way of salvation.
18 And this she did for many days. But Paul, being sore troubled, turned and said to the spirit, I charge thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And it came out that very hour."
"charge" was Strong's #3853 paraggello - "to transmit a message"
(In yesterday's comments we saw that a command/charge is the statement of an action...NOT the statement of a will)
Paul began by saying, "I have a message for you in the name of Jesus Christ".
The message was a statement of the will for the unclean spirit: "come out of her". (The command/action was the statement of a will.)
Again, Paul spoke a will over the unclean spirit in the name of Jesus Christ.
To some, this may look like the sons of Sceva, but they tried to hold an unclean spirit to a sacred oath...NOT transmit a message.
We have consistently seen that Spiritual Warfare involved casting out unclean spirits and healing people. In every successful instance, we have seen the participant in Spiritual Warfare made a Statement that was a statement of the will for someone or something that couldn't state a will OR for someone who had faith and was in agreement.
Again, Spiritual Warfare consisted of WORDS and SENTENCES.
Tomorrow, we will conclude this look at casting out unclean spirits and healing people by looking at Jesus...