“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ…” 2 Corinthians 10:4-5.
As born-again believers, we must be diligent to cast down thoughts, reasonings and ideas which are contrary to the Word of God. For example, if you have a financial need and are standing on God’s promise in Philippians 4:19, which reads in The Message: “You can be sure that God will take care of everything you need, his generosity exceeding even yours in the glory that pours from Jesus”, and Satan whispers in your ear, “Not this time. He’s not going to come through for you this time,” cast down that thought in the Name of Jesus and declare, out loud, the truth of God’s Word.
One of my mentors in Christ taught me a valuable truth and it is this: You can’t fight thoughts with thoughts. You have to fight thoughts with words. The words we fight with are the very Words of God.
Back to my example above. When Satan lies to you that God is not going to meet your need, get in Satan's face and tell him that according to the Word of God, God has promised to take care of everything you need. Remind him that God clothes the lilies of the field, and that you are more valuable than they are.” (Matthew 6: 28-30). Tell him that Jesus told his followers to “take no thought, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’…For your heavenly Father knows that you have need of all these things.” (Matthew 6: 31-32). Inform him that you’re going to do what Jesus told you to do – not to worry but “…seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be given to you.” (Matthew 6:33). In other words, you must fight to keep the seed of faith planted in your heart by the Word of God, for “… faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17 NKJV). Don’t allow Satan to steal the Word of God out of your heart. If you do, you allow him to steal your victory.
In 1 Timothy 6:12, NKJV, the Apostle Paul told us to fight the fight of faith. “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” I believe one aspect of the fight of faith is holding on with dogged determination to the promises of God and casting down anything that is contrary to His Word. Like a dog who has a bone and will not let go, we will not let go of God’s Word, no matter the whispers from the enemy, the circumstances, or the contrary reports. We must be like Abraham, who “staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God…” (Romans 4:20).
The Greek word for stagger is diakrino, which means “to waver”. Remember what James says in James 1: 6-7 (Berean Study Bible). “But he must ask in faith, without doubting, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. He is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”
Today, may we determine as men and women of God, to cast down anything contrary to the Word of God, to fight the good fight of faith, and not to stagger at the promises of God. May we be strong in faith, like Abraham, so we can receive all that God has for us.
Being a self-published author has its challenges. One of them I find particularly taxing is the marketing of my book. There are so many confusing voices on the Internet telling me that if I purchase their service, my advertising will reach hundreds (or thousands) of people. How do I know what is true – what works and what doesn’t?
Of course, there are many ways to market my book without spending money, such as approaching bookstores, libraries, joining groups on social media, and sending queries to podcasts and radio stations to interview me regarding the book. It’s the advertisements that promise me the moon that I’m unsure whether to invest in or not.
For example, I purchased an ad on one of the social media sites and ran it for seven days. I got clicks but not purchases. I gave up after one campaign. But should I have? I receive blogs regarding book marketing and one blogger stated that you have to keep trying different ads to see which ones are successful and which ones are not. This makes sense but it also costs money.
I think my quandary is where will my advertising dollar have the most success? And when you get right down to it, the only way to find out is by trial and error. Not very reassuring. But I’ll keep plugging away. Giving up is not an option.
There’s a verse in Ezekiel 12:28 that someone brought to my attention recently. In The Living Bible, it reads as follows: “Therefore say to them: ‘The Lord God says, “All delay has ended. I will do it now.”’
The context of this verse is that Ezekiel prophesied that the prince – Zedekiah, would go out from the land of Israel carrying his baggage, covering his face so that he did not see the land. He would be taken captive to Babylon. However, the people of Israel said that the prophecy was for many days in the future and that the prophecies failed. God told Ezekiel to tell His people that the prophecy would take place now.
What were the people of Israel saying? In essence, they were saying that God’s words were not true.
“All delay has ended. I will do it now. Each of us has an “it” in our lives – a prayer we need answers to, a promise we are waiting to see fulfilled. During this time, Satan comes to us and tells us that God’s words are not true – that He does not keep His promises. Will we believe Satan’s lies or the truth of God’s Word? Here are some verses to bolster your faith and help you to stay on course.
Joshua 23:14 NIV: “Now I am about to go the way of all the earth. You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed.”
1 Kings 8:56: “Blessed be the Lord, who has given rest to His people Israel, according to all that He promised; not one word has failed of all His good promise, which He promised through Moses His servant.”
Psalm 89:34: “No, I will not break my covenant; I will not take back a single word I said.”
Psalm 138:2 NKJV: “I will worship toward Your holy temple, And praise Your name For Your lovingkindness and Your truth; For You have magnified Your word above all Your name.”
Isaiah 55: 11 TLB: “…so also is my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It shall accomplish all I want it to and prosper everywhere I send it.”
Isaiah 65:24 TLB:” I will answer them before they even call to me. While they are still talking to me about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers!”
Jeremiah 1:12 NIV: “The Lord said to me, “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.”
Lamentations 2:17 a NIV: “The Lord has done what he planned; he has fulfilled his word, which he decreed long ago…”
2 Corinthians 1:20 TPT: For all of God’s promises find their “yes” of fulfillment in him. And as his “yes” and our “amen” ascend to God, we bring him glory!”
Hebrews 10:23: “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”
I could go on. A man by the name of Evert R. Storms, a Canadian school teacher, on his 27th reading of the Bible, found 7,487 promises by God to humankind. So when we’re tempted to give up, let’s meditate on the promises of God and take to heart the admonition given to us in Hebrews 10:35, NIV: “So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.”
Dear Lord Jesus, I choose today not to cast away my confidence in Your great and precious promises.
In 1 John 5:14-15, The Living Bible, it says, “And we are sure of this, that he will listen to us whenever we ask him for anything in line with his will. And if we really know he is listening when we talk to him and make our requests, then we can be sure that he will answer us.’”
Do we really believe God will answer us when we pray in line with His will?
In Mark 11:24, it says, “Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” We’re to believe we receive when we pray. Immediately, we receive in our spirit by faith. Later, the answer manifests in the physical.
It’s the time between when we receive the answer in our spirits and it manifests in the natural realm that often gets us into trouble. We begin to doubt God’s Word. If Satan can get us off the Word of God, he can steal our victory. That’s where the spiritual force of patience comes in.
Hebrews 6:12 in the Berean Literal Bible says, “That you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” What it says about becoming sluggish is important. When it takes a long time for the answer to come, it’s so easy to take our focus off the promise we’re holding onto and to look at the circumstances instead.
It reminds me of Abraham. God told him when he and Sarah were old, had no children, and Sarah had been barren all her life, that through Abraham’s offspring, the nations of the earth would be blessed. “I’ll make you a great nation and bless you. I’ll make you famous; you’ll be a blessing. I’ll bless those who bless you; those who curse you I’ll curse. All the families of the Earth will be blessed through you.” (Genesis 12: 2-3 MSG).
A long time passed and no children appeared on the scene. So, Abraham and Sarah decided to help God out. Abraham took Sarah’s servant as a wife so he could have children with her. The results were disastrous, which are still evident to this day. Abraham and Sarah did not allow the force of patience to keep them steady until the promise was fulfilled and Isaac was born.
But after God changed Abram’s name to Abraham, ‘father of many nations’, and Sarai’s name to Sarah, ‘mother of many nations’, they remained steady and at the time promised by God, Isaac came into the world.
“In spite of being nearly one hundred years old when the promise of having a son was made, his faith was so strong that it could not be undermined by the fact that he and Sarah were incapable of conceiving a child. He never stopped believing God’s promise, for he was made strong in his faith…And because he was mighty in faith and convinced that God had all the power needed to fulfill his promises, Abraham glorified God.” (Romans 4:19-21 TPT).
As born-again believers, let’s be strong in faith, glorify God and stand on His great and precious promises, no matter what we see around us. In the power of the Holy Spirit, let’s walk by faith and not by sight.
In this Blog, I want to share with you some of the things I've learned from many years of following Jesus.