War and Peace

While in prayer a few days ago, I heard the following words in my spirit: “War and peace.  There is war in the heavenlies over the peace of Jerusalem.”

My first thought, since Israel is much in the news right now, was that it was about the need to pray for Jerusalem, but as I inquired further, I understood that “Jerusalem,” in this case, was symbolic, meaning the saints of God.

The Lord went on to explain that there is an onslaught going on against God’s people to cause them to mistrust His goodness and His faithfulness to His promises.  It is a two-prong attack: the bringing about of negative or hindering circumstances, and then the pounding of discouragement and worry against our minds.

This war is nothing new.  It is an age-old conflict.  But as we draw nearer to the end of time, the heat is intensifying.  Daniel 7 gives us a picture of the very end of the last days.  Verse 25 says of the Antichrist, “He shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High.”  Daniel 7:21, 22 says, he “made war with the saints, and prevailed against them, until the Ancient of Days came ….”   Revelation 12:12 adds, “…for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has only a short time.”

Are these verses being fulfilled right now?  No, they speak of a literal person who will come against God’s people, the literal coming of the Lord to establish His physical kingdom, and the final judgment.  But as we get closer to that time, we are seeing an increase in the assaults upon us.   I am hearing from many people these days who are distressed and plagued with the temptation to worry and doubt like they have never experienced before.  The circumstances are different for each of us, but I dare say most of us are feeling the pressure.

So, what do we do to overcome?  We wage our own spiritual warfare.  We determine in our hearts not to give in to the pressure.  This means that when we notice worry or doubt of God’s faithfulness nagging at the edges of our minds, we don’t ignore it. If we just ignore the thoughts, it won’t be long  before we start agreeing with them.  We must actively refuse to indulge the wrong ideas, and we command the assaulting demonic influence that is injecting them into our thinking to leave.

We speak the truth of the Word of God — truth about His faithfulness, His goodness, His commitment to His promises.  It is good to meditate on these character qualities of God, but it is even better to verbalize them.  Quote the Bible verses aloud, so that you hear them.  If you don’t know where very many of them are, I can help you: go to Encouragement from God’s Word.  You will find a lot of verses topically listed there, and if you would like, you can purchase them in booklet form (but you don’t have to.) 

Repeatedly speak to the Lord of your belief in Him.  Tell Him you trust Him, that you believe He will help you, that you believe the promises in His Word and the promises He has personally given you.  I do this silently a lot, but I also do it aloud.  There is much power in the spoken word.  Speak these things in prayer even if you don’t feel it in your emotions.  As you believe by an act of your will, empowered by what you know to be right in your spirit-man, the thoughts and emotions will eventually line up.  That doesn’t happen easily or immediately, because it is part of the spiritual battle we are waging.

What if you have already indulged in worry, fear, mistrust of God?  What if you’ve already spoken doubt and pretty much given it all up into the enemy’s hands?  Capitulating to the enemy in earthly battles means you lose.  But it is different in the spiritual realm.  As long as you are breathing, no matter how badly you have botched it, you can still win.  Ask the Lord to forgive you, and determine to speak and believe right things from now on.  Exercise what faith you have, and watch God strengthen you and build more faith in you.  We all fall down, but the Lord does not have a limit on how many times He will pick us up.  Just keep pressing on, always determining to go higher.  Only those who refuse to get up again fail.

Personally, I find comfort in knowing I am not alone when these assaults hit me.  When other people express that they are going through the same thing, it helps me to understand that we are comrades in arms, all experiencing the same war.  We strengthen each other along the way.  In fact, that’s why I am writing this today, so that you will know you are not alone.  And we will make it.  Jesus says so in His Word.    

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