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Two Kingdoms

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“…there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The KINGDOM OF THE WORLD has become the KINGDOM OF OUR LORD and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever (Revelation 11:15, NAS).”

 

“For He rescued us from the DOMAIN OF DARKNESS, and transferred us to the KINGDOM OF HIS BELOVED SON (Colossians 1:13, NAS).”

 

We must first acknowledge that there are two kingdoms: God’s and Satan’s. Ultimately, we know that the Kingdom of God will reign supreme over all darkness – the world kingdom – Satan’s kingdom reigning currently on earth. By accepting Christ’s redemptive blood through repentance, people are able to transition from the kingdom of darkness into the Kingdom of God. This is the broad picture, but what about the more detailed picture that involves we who dwell on earth?  To whom does the earth belong?

  • GOD?

 

“The earth is the LORD’S, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it…(Psalm 24:1-2, NAS).”

Behold, to the LORD your God belong heaven and the highest heavens, the earth and all that is in it (Deuteronomy 10:14, NAS).”

  •  SATAN?

 

“…the devil has come down to you…he has a short time (Revelation 12:12).”

“…now the ruler of this world will be cast out (John 12:31, NAS).”

“in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel…(II Corinthians 4:4, NAS).”

  • MAN?

 

“The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord’s: but the EARTH hath He given to the children of men (Psalm 115:16, KJV).”

God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth (Genesis 1:28, NAS).”

 

This can be tricky if we only look at these Scriptures individually. Ultimately, the earth belongs to God as everything in existence does because He is the Creator of all – the seen and the unseen. He is the “owner.” As the owner, He gave rule over the earth to man through Adam. Adam and his descendants were ordained to rule as “acting manager” in a manner of speaking. However, as manager, he had the authority to give management over to someone else – and so he did. Through Adam’s sin, he inadvertently gave the management to Satan, the prince of the power of the air, aka the god of this world.

A common phrase among people is, “I went/am going through hell.” This is because currently, Satan’s domain is the earth. When he was cast from heaven, God said “Woe to the inhabitants of the earth!” – yet all is not lost. We, God’s ambassadors from the Kingdom of heaven, are clearly to usher heaven down to earth! This hasn’t been happening much because of lack of understanding of God’s Kingdom, but it’s time to learn from whence and from whom we originate.

 

“The devil took Him to a very high mountain and showed Him ALL the kingdoms of the world and their glory, and he said to Him, ‘All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me.’ Then Jesus said to him, ‘Go, Satan! For it is written, “You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only (Matthew 4:8-11, NAS).”’”

 

Satan could not have offered Jesus something he did not already possess. Satan took possession when Adam legally gave it to him in the Garden of Eden. God gave authority to Adam, therefore by all legal rights, because of Adam’s fall, the earth is currently run by Satan.

After the flood, God made covenant with Noah hence giving back all legal ground over the earth to man. As time passed, mankind grew more and more evil, in turn handing the earth back to Satan. It wasn’t until Jesus came in the lineage of King David that, by conquering death and the grave, authority was given to Jesus.

Now all who receive Christ as their Lord, King, and Savior have within them the One who holds the authority. God gave Jesus authority and Jesus gave authority to the Church – those who accept Christ (mankind). Through redeemed man, the Kingdom of God can reign on earth as it should have been in the beginning. God owns the earth, the earth is Satan’s dominion for now, but we who walk according to the Spirit instead of the flesh, we can take back what God originally gave to Adam. We must of necessity allow Holy Spirit to overtake us (the individual and collective body) so as to allow the Kingdom of God to come down to earth.

As Dr. Myles Monroe points out in his teachings, when Adam sinned, because he was the visible manifestation of the invisible kingdom of heaven, technically, he committed treason. He lost both his relationship and his kingdom. Dr. Munroe states: “Adam was a king without a kingdom. A ruler with nothing to rule.” God’s holy people need most desperately to discover a Kingdom mindset, how God’s Kingdom government works, and then turn and rule the earth through Holy Spirit so as to overthrow Satan and the hell he regularly ushers. The time is now to take back the earth!

 

I hope you’ll come back next time. If you’re interested in reading more, please go to my website and check out my books or my ministry Facebook page.

Peace and blessings,

 

Alexys V. Wolf

www.thefierysword.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fiery-Sword-Global-Ministries/185299884822251

http://thefierysword.wordpress.com/


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SUCCESS COMES IN CANS, PART II


by Neil Anderson

July 17

Romans 1:17 
The righteous man shall live by faith
 
Believing that you can succeed at Christian growth and maturity takes no more effort than believing you cannot succeed. So why not believe that you can walk in faith and in the Spirit; that you can resist the temptations of the world, the flesh and the devil; and that you can grow to maturity as a Christian. Allow the “Twenty Cans of Success” you began yesterday to encourage you.
 
Twenty Cans of Success (continued) Why should I ever be in bondage knowing that there is liberty where the Spirit of the Lord is (2 Corinthians 3:17)? Why should I feel condemned when the Bible says I am not condemned because I am in Christ (Romans 8:1)? Why should I feel alone when Jesus said He is with me always and He will never leave me nor forsake me (Matthew 28:20; Hebrews 13:5)? Why should I feel accursed or that I am the victim of bad luck when the Bible says that Christ redeemed me from the curse of the law that I might receive His Spirit (Galatians 3:13, 14)? Why should I be discontented when I, like Paul, can learn to be content in all my circumstances (Philippians 4:11)? Why should I feel worthless when Christ became sin on my behalf that I might become the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21)? Why should I have a persecution complex knowing that nobody can be against me when God is for me (Romans 8:31)? Why should I be confused when God is the author of peace and He gives me knowledge through his indwelling Spirit (1 Corinthians 14:33; 2:12)? Why should I feel like a failure when I am a conqueror in all things through Christ (Romans 8:37)? Why should I let the pressures of life bother me when I can take courage knowing that Jesus has overcome the world and its tribulations (John 16:33)?
 
Prayer: I rejoice in Your eternal promises, Lord. You are a Rock that never crumbles.


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CONFLICTING WORLDVIEWS

 


by Neil Anderson

 

July 13

Colossians 1:13  For He delivered us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son

The Western world today sees reality in two tiers. The upper tier is the transcendent world where God and angels–as well as ghosts and ghouls–reside, a world which is understood through religion and mysticism. The lower tier is the empirical world, which is understood through science and the physical senses. In two-tier mentality, the spiritual world has no practical bearing on the natural world; we have excluded it from our understanding of reality. Most attempts at integrating theology and psychology include only God and humanity (fallen and redeemed) and exclude the activity of Satan and demons.

In stark contrast to the secularism of the West, two-thirds of the inhabitants of the world hold an Eastern worldview. They live and operate believing that spiritual forces are an everyday reality. These people appease their gods with peace offerings and perform religious rituals to ward off evil spirits. To the common people in Third World nations, religious practice or superstition has more practical relevance in daily life than science.

It is easy for those of us raised in the West to dismiss the Eastern worldview as inferior on the basis of the “success” of the Western world. But both are worldly systems and neither reflects biblical reality. The West tries to ignore the reality of the spiritual world and the East tries to appease it or naively enter into it. The Bible clearly depicts the reality of the kingdom of darkness and the kingdom of light. God’s Word tells us we can have victory over the former by being transferred into the latter.

Many Christians either exclude the supernatural from their worldview altogether or consign it to the transcendental tier where it will have no effect on their lives. By doing so they not only exclude God’s power from their theology and practice, but they also explain all human failure–even that which is induced by demonic influence–as the result of psychological or natural causes.

Prayer: Lord, I accept the worldview presented in Your Word. Help me deal victoriously with the reality of demonic forces in my world.

 


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CHILDREN AND THE OCCULT


by Neil Anderson

 

July 11
 
1 Corinthians 16:13 
Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith
 
The school administration in a Christian high school found out that nearly every student in the school had played “Bloody Mary,” a popular party game among some groups of children. A common version of the game requires a child to go into a completely darkened bathroom alone, spin around six times, face the mirror, and call upon Bloody Mary to show herself. In many cases these children saw something frightening in the mirror. There was no physical explanation for seeing anything in a totally dark room. These children had unwittingly opened themselves up to the god of this world.
 
Bloody Mary is only one of the more “innocent” ways our children are giving Satan a foothold in their lives. Games like the Ouija board and Dungeons and Dragons are other common means by which children are introduced to the occult. The music, movies, magazines, television programs, and substances our children are exposed to create gaping doors of opportunity for Satan to seduce them. At one public high school in Southern California, 133 students were referred to the school psychologist during the first six weeks of classes because of their involvement with Satanism and the occult. Most children don’t even realize the spiritual bondage they are submitting to when participating in these activities. What’s worse, most parents don’t either.
 
Children are dabbling in all kinds of occultic experiences: astral projection, table lifting, fortune-telling, astrology, crystals or pyramids, automatic writing, tarot cards, palm reading, spirit guides and blood pacts. In addition, the New Age Movement, permeating our society and our public education system today, is the source of many pitfalls. Much of the world’s attempt to amuse and entertain our children leads them into darkness.
 
No matter how many dark doorways beckon to your children, Christ is the ultimate door to freedom. He is the truth and the light that dispels the lies of Satan and the darkness of the world. Teach yourself and your children to know and choose the truth.
 
Prayer: Lord, help me equip my children to recognize and dispel the darkness in the worldly amusements and entertainment which surround them.


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THE SOURCE OF ALL HOPE


by Neil Anderson

July 9

Psalm 43:5 
Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, the help of my countenance, and my God
 
Sometimes the depression resulting from a seemingly impossible situation is related to a wrong concept of God. David wrote: “How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? . . . How long will my enemy triumph over me?” (Psalm 13:1, 2 NIV). Had God really forgotten David? Was He actually hiding from David? Of course not. David had a wrong concept of God, feeling that He had abandoned him to the enemy. David believed a lie about God, and consequently he lost his focus. His situation seemed hopeless, and hopelessness is the basis for all depression.
 
But the remarkable thing about David is that he didn’t stay in the dumps. He evaluated his situation and realized, “Hey, I’m a child of God. I’m going to focus on what I know about Him, not on my negative feelings.” From the pit of his depression, he wrote: “I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation” (Psalm 13:5 NIV). Then he decided to make a positive expression of his will: “I will sing to the LORD, for he has been good to me” (verse 6). He willfully moved away from his wrong concept and its accompanying depression and returned to the source of his hope.
 
If Satan can destroy your belief in God, you will lose your source of hope. But with God, all things are possible. He is the source of all hope. You need to learn to respond to hopeless-appearing situations as David did: “Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why are you disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, the help of my countenance, and my God” (Psalm 43:5).
 
If Satan can’t destroy your concept of God, then he will seek to destroy your concept of who you are as a child of God. He can’t do anything about your position in Christ, but if he can get you to believe it’s not true, you will live as if it’s not, even though it is. The two most important beliefs you possess are who God is and who you are as His child.
 
Prayer: Above all, Father, help me focus continually on who You are and who I am in Christ, and to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.


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YOUR BEST DEFENSE


by Neil Anderson

July 8

1 John 4:4 
You are from God, little children, and have overcome [evil spirits]; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world
 
When you came to life in Christ, Satan didn’t curl up his tail and pull in his fangs. He is committed to foul up your life through his deception to “prove” that Christianity doesn’t work, that God’s Word isn’t true, and that nothing really happened when you were born again.
 
You don’t have to be a defenseless hockey puck at the mercy of Satan and his demons. God has already supplied the protection you need to ward off any and every attack in the spiritual realm. You just need to know what God has provided and to apply it to your own experience. Your best defense against the god of this world is to live a righteous life in Christ.
 
Some Christians are a little paranoid about evil powers, suspecting that demons lurk around every corner just waiting to possess them. That’s an unfounded fear. Our relationship to demonic powers in the spiritual realm is a lot like our relationship to germs in the physical realm. We know that germs are all around us: in the air, in the water, in our food, in other people, even in us. But do you live in constant fear of catching some disease? No–unless you’re a hypochondriac! You know enough about wellness to eat the right foods, get enough rest, and keep yourself and your possessions clean. If you live a balanced life, your immune system will protect you.
 
It’s the same in the spiritual realm. Demons are like little invisible germs looking for someone to infect. We are never told in Scripture to be afraid of them. You just need to be aware of their reality and commit yourself to live a righteous life in spite of them. Should you come under attack, deal with it and go on with life. Remember: the only thing big about a demon is its mouth. Demons are habitual liars. In Jesus Christ, the Truth, you are equipped with all the authority and protection you need to deal with anything they throw at you.
 
Prayer: Lord, I know that living a righteous life is my pathway to experiencing freedom. I renounce Satan’s lies and choose righteousness today.


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SUBMIT TO GOD


by Neil Anderson

 

June 29
 
1 John 2:14 NIV 
I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.
 
According to John, new Christians are like little children whose sins are forgiven and who have entered into the knowledge of God. Mature saints are likened to old men who have a deep knowledge of God. In between are the young men, growing Christians whose chief characteristic is that they have overcome the evil one. No wonder we don’t have very many mature saints in the Western world. We scarcely recognize that there is an evil one, let alone overcome him!
 
Until you have overcome the evil one, you may not have a lot of mental peace. If you are attempting to deal with deceiving thoughts by trying to rebuke them, you’ll be like the person treading water in the middle of the ocean whose life’s purpose is to keep 12 corks, which are bobbing close by, submerged with a little hammer! Acknowledge the presence of the corks, but ignore them and swim to shore! Don’t pay attention to deceiving spirits.
 
The whole thrust of Scripture directs us to choose truth. We dispel the darkness by turning on the light. If you are plagued by tempting thoughts, bring the issue before God and seek to resolve that which is keeping you from having perfect fellowship with Him. The devil isn’t the primary issue–he is only taking advantage of the fact that your fellowship with God has been broken. James 4:7 has the right priorities: “Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” The primary issue is to submit to God.
 
Satan knows that if he can keep our minds distracted, we won’t have much of a prayer life with God. Prayer is the vital link for God’s guidance. If we are going to walk with God through the darkness, we must have the peace of God which surpasses all comprehension and guards our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:7).
 
Prayer: Lord, thank You that as I submit to You and resist the devil, Satan must flee and I will be free.


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NO MIDDLE GROUND


by Neil Anderson

 

June 28
 
Luke 11:23 
He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me, scatters
 
The early church included in its public declaration of faith, “I renounce you, Satan, and all your works and ways.” The Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, and many other liturgical churches still require this renunciation as part of confirmation. For some reason it has disappeared from most evangelical churches. Consequently, we have mislaid a very important truth: We must not only choose the truth but recognize and renounce the counterfeit. There is no middle ground with truth. Jesus said, “He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me, scatters” (Luke 11:23). There are not many paths to God; there is only one way (John 14:6). Christians are not being narrow-minded when they stand on what God has declared.
 
The literal meaning of repentance is a change of mind. This is not merely mental acknowledgment. The idea is that “I used to think, believe and walk one way, but now I think, believe and walk a new way.” People who say “I believe the Bible, but I also believe what I learned that is contrary to the Word of God” are deceived and living in bondage.
 
The first step to freedom in Christ is to renounce previous or current involvement with satanically inspired occultic practices or false religions. Any activity or group which denies Jesus Christ, offers guidance through any source other than the absolute authority of the written Word of God, or requires secret initiations must be forsaken. No Christian has any business being part of a group that is not completely open about all they do. God does everything in the light because in Him there is no darkness at all. We are to walk in the light.
 
Prayer: Great Deliverer, bring to my mind deceptions from Satan I need to renounce and remove so I can walk completely in the light.

 


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OUR VULNERABILITY


by Neil Anderson

 

June 10
Luke 22:31, 32  
Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat; but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail
 
It is critical that Christians understand their vulnerability to demonic influence. Those who say a demon cannot influence a believer’s life have left us with only two possible culprits for the problems we face: ourselves or God. If we blame ourselves, we feel hopeless because we can’t do anything to stop what we’re doing. If we blame God, our confidence in Him as our benevolent Father is shattered. Either way, we have no chance to gain the victory which the Bible promises us. In reality we are in a winnable war against the defeated kingdom of darkness. But the lies of Satan can gain a measure of control if we believe them.
 
What right did Satan have to sift Simon (Peter) like wheat? The context reveals that Peter and the other disciples were arguing about who was going to be the greatest in the kingdom of God. In other words, they were exercising pride. Sinful pride affords Satan a huge opportunity. Peter protested that he was willing to die or go to prison for the sake of Christ. But Jesus told him that, before the day was over, Peter would deny Him three times, and he did.
 
There are many believers who profess their faith and commit themselves to behave appropriately but can’t seem to follow through. Why? We dare not overlook the reality of Satan and the ground we give him through pride and disobedience. God intervened in the early church and struck down Ananias and Sapphira because they allowed Satan to fill their hearts to lie to the Holy Spirit. The word filled in Acts 5 is the same word found in Ephesians 5:18: “Be filled with the Spirit.” God delivered a dramatic message early: To whichever source you yield, by that source you shall be filled or controlled.
 
Prayer: Father, I ask forgiveness for any ways I have allowed Satan to control me. I want to be controlled wholly by You.


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WAKE UP!


by Neil Anderson

 

May 30

Deuteronomy 18:10-12

There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For whoever does these things is detestable to the LORD.
 
The dark side of Satan’s version of spiritual knowledge and power mentioned by Moses–ritual sacrifice, witchcraft, sorcery–is also thriving in our culture, though not as openly as some of the more socially acceptable New Age practices. Our police departments are trying to tell parents today, “Wake up! Your kids are not just into drugs and illicit sex. They’re into Satanism. We’ve seen the blood and the mutilated animals.” It’s getting so bad that one of the animal control agencies in our area will no longer release a black dog or cat at Halloween for fear that it will become the victim of satanic ritual abuse.
 
The man who heads up our campus security belongs to a group of security officers from campuses across Southern California which meets once a month. When it was our school’s turn to host the meeting, he asked me to speak to the group about spiritual phenomena in our culture. “There aren’t many Christians in the group,” he said, “but they’ll be on our campus, so I want you to speak to them.” I agreed to do so.
 
It was a veteran crowd of former military men and police officers. When I started talking about the rise of Satanism and ritual abuse in our community, there wasn’t a doubter or a scoffer in the bunch. Every one of them had a story to share about finding grisly evidence of Satanism being active on their respective campuses.
 
Every aberration of spiritual knowledge and power that Moses warned the Israelites to avoid in Canaan–from “harmless” horoscopes to unthinkable atrocities of animal and human sacrifice–is in place and operating in our culture today. We must wake up to the reality that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against . . . spiritual forces of wickedness” (Ephesians 6:12).
 
Prayer: Mighty Lord, equip me today not just to stand my ground against the enemy but to actively reclaim in Jesus’ name territory he has stolen.