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Invisible War - Spiritual Warfare 401: How to Gain Deliverance from Demonic Influence, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
October 21, 2020 6:00 am

Invisible War - Spiritual Warfare 401: How to Gain Deliverance from Demonic Influence, Part 1

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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October 21, 2020 6:00 am

Chip shares what he believes is the most powerful weapon God has given every believer to combat the forces of evil, and he’ll tell you how to use it to protect yourself from demonic attack.

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Over the past two weeks in this series, The Invisible War, we've learned a lot about spiritual warfare, who the enemy is, his tactics, his weapons, his power. But today we're going to talk about what might be the most powerful weapon that God has given a believer, and not only what it is, but how to use it.

You're not going to want to miss it. Stay with me. Living on the Edge features the Bible teaching of Chip Ingram on this daily discipleship program. I'm Dave Druey, and today Chip continues his series called The Invisible War. Whether we know it or not, we're all in a spiritual battle. Sometimes there's a lull, sometimes the battle rages.

If today finds you on the front lines, or you just want to be prepared when the battle flares up, you've come to the right place. Here's Chip with his message from Ephesians Chapter 6, How to Gain Deliverance from Demonic Influence. I want to read a story. It's a true story.

It comes out of a book that is sort of a devotional little book, but I want you to just listen. A missionary was serving as a medic at a small field through a hospital in Africa. Periodically he had to travel by bicycle through the jungle to a nearby city for supplies. It was a two-day trip, so he had to camp out overnight.

He had made the trip several times without incident. One day, however, he arrived at his destination and saw that two men were fighting. One was seriously hurt, so he treated him, witnessed to him, and went about his business.

Upon arriving in the city again several weeks later, he was approached by the man that he had treated. He said, I know you carry money and medicine, said the man to the missionary. Some friends and I followed you into the jungle that night after you treated me, knowing you would have to camp overnight. We waited for you to go to sleep, and we planned to kill you and take your money and the drugs. Just as we started moving into the campsite, we saw that you were surrounded by 26 armed guards.

There were only six of us, and we knew we couldn't possibly get near you, so we left. Hearing this, the missionary laughed. He said, well, that's impossible. I assure you, I was alone that night in the campsite.

The young man pressed his point. He said, no, sir, I was not the only one who saw the guards. My friends also saw them, and we all counted them, and we were all frightened.

It was because of those guards that we left you alone. Several months later, the missionary attended a church who made the presentation in Michigan, where he told about his experience in Africa. One of the congregants jumped to his feet, interrupted the missionary, and said something that left everyone in the church absolutely stunned. We were there with you in spirit, the man said.

The missionary looked perplexed. The man continued, on that night in Africa, it was morning here. I stopped by the church to gather some materials for an out-of-town trip to go to another parish. But as I put my bags into the trunk, I felt the Lord leading me to pray for you. The urging was so compelling and so strong, I called the men of the church to gather to pray for you. Then the man stood up and turned around and said, well, all of you men who met with me that morning, please stand up.

And one by one, all 26 men stood up. And I would say intercessory prayer is the pivotal and essential aspect for corporate and individual deliverance. Notice how Paul ends, verses 18 to 20. With all prayer and petition, pray at all times, how? In the spirit. And with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints, and pray on my behalf. And what's he pray? That the utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. That is, proclaiming it that I may speak boldly as I ought to speak.

I want you to look at that last paragraph and circle the word all. All prayer, all times, all the saints. And then I want you to underline prayer, petition, alert, perseverance, petition, pray on my behalf, utterance given to me. Is there any doubt that this is talking about a level of prayer that isn't sort of casually talking to God in the car and hoping some good things happen? The summary of verses 18 to 20 is the means by which believers are to withstand and overcome the attacks of the enemy in spiritual warfare is by consistent, intense, strategic prayer for one another in conjunction with the personal application of the armor of God. And so what I want to do is give you, in our time together, an overview of what does consistent, strategic, intentional, and intense prayer look like from this passage.

And then a bit later, I want to talk about actual deliverance ministry and at least give an overview of that. Intercessory prayer is our most powerful and strategic corporate weapon in spiritual warfare. Prayer has a direct impact on spiritual warfare.

Mark chapter 9, verses 29, they come down from the mount of transfiguration and a man says, Jesus, help me. Your disciples have tried to cast out this demon and it won't. And Jesus says, this kind only comes out by prayer and fasting. There seems to be a direct correlation between a kind of prayer, a level of prayer. Prayer provides and assists in the deliverance of others who are undergoing spiritual attack. Luke 22, Peter, Satan has sought to sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you. Power falls where prayer prevails.

All I want you to get, I want you to get that prayer isn't like an add-on or it's a few words here and there. The scripture is teaching that this is vital, pivotal, core to spiritual warfare and victory. I did a study in the book of Acts and I put it in front of you. I went through all the key passages and all the breakthroughs and you'll notice where prayer, Acts 1, Acts 2 42, 3 1, chapter 4, chapter 6, chapter 8, chapter 9, chapter 10. Church history is replete, the Welsh revival started with a handful of people, people who met together each Saturday night and prayed. God spoke to them and there was a revival there that spread across the world. A man's prayer revival in the 1800s, there wasn't a pastor, there was no preaching. It moved from city to city to city where during the noon hour a handful of businessmen said, let's pray, three requests pray for him, three requests pray for him. And then it went Chicago, New York, all across the country.

Experts say millions of people came to Christ. The great awakening in the United States, our history at Living on the Edge. We're sitting around a table and we've almost gone out of business once or twice, didn't have sufficient funds, we've had times where we were taking big steps of faith and either our family members or people on our team, we had like cancer, like five different people.

It was like all hell breaking loose. And in those times we learned to pray with intensity and we learned to fast. And as with our staff recently and we have a number of new staff members that said, we don't pray every day because we're holy or noble or we think it's a good idea.

We've been in crises and we've seen God deliver, we just decided, why don't we realize how desperate we are all the time? So we're going to pray and when we give a small group to someone we say, how can we pray for you, then we check back and how it's doing and we pray for the people that get connected. And I knew what was going to happen here and so the Wednesday before we came it was like, prayer, fasting and prayer. It's voluntary.

But the great majority of all of our staff said, we know what would be happening in your lives and I knew what was going to happen in my life and I knew probably what would happen here. God hears where prayer prevails, power falls. What kinds of prayer bring God's deliverance and power? It's not casual, trite, little prayers. Notice it's consistent prayer, verse 18.

With all prayer and petition. The first word there is a general word for prayer. Notice it's all prayers, all kinds of prayer and petition, very specific.

And so it's not just asking, asking, asking. I think one of the great breakthroughs that will help you in your prayer life is realize that God longs to be worshipped. You know that little acronym that you learn somewhere, A-C-T-S, adoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication. The kind of prayer where we recognize God for who He is. We begin to thank Him for what He's done and it builds up our faith. We come and we want to be clean and we confess our sins and then we say, now, holy, almighty, all powerful God who you want to change the whole world.

You're not willing that any should perish. We bring these petitions before you consistently. And when God sees that, I think He just leans over and longs to answer our prayers. It's not just all kinds of prayer, but He says pray at all times on all occasions. I think there's two kinds of prayer. I think we all need protracted, quiet, extended times to pray.

And then I think we need to have these punctuated or commanded in 1 Thessalonians, right? Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing.

In everything give thanks for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. And as you study that passage, it's like a coughing prayer. It's like, you know, when your mind is free, you're talking to God. You're in the car.

You're walking from, you're picking up your bag and you're taking it out to the car. Someone comes to your mind and as they're coming to your mind, you're not in conversation. You're constantly, it would be Brother Lawrence when he talks about practicing the presence of God. Over time, you're cultivating an awareness where when you're not thinking about something else, you are talking to the Lord. And by the way, I think one of the most important things in prayer, and especially for people like me who talk a lot, is to be quiet. And especially in situations where you don't know what to do or you need wisdom, ask and then sit quietly and learn to recognize God's voice and the promptings that He gives you. When He gives you a prompting that will cost you something that might be embarrassing, and that would really help other people, and that would glorify Him, and you might not want to do it, there's a good chance it's from God. Because you wouldn't do that naturally.

And you'll learn to recognize His voice. Consistent prayer and intense prayer, not half-hearted prayer. Notice it says, be on the alert. Literally, the word means without sleep. It means to be vigilant. It means not going through the motions.

And it says with all perseverance, it's not giving up. Unless you're different than everyone else in the world that I know, sometimes when you're praying and it just feels like you're in mud, and no matter how hard you try, you're not making any progress, or you begin to pray. You know, there's times, don't we all experience the presence of God when we're praying? And it's exciting and there's such a sense. Isn't there times where it's like, I mean, this is like, I'm not sure I'm even making it up to the ceiling, let alone through the ceiling, let alone to heaven, right?

And it just feels dull and I'm not connected. The old saints used to talk about praying through. You know what happens?

You know the temptation when you get there is like, hey, I'll check you later. Who do you think wants you to stop praying? I don't wake up every day, I really, really love my wife deeply, but I don't wake up every day with my emotions overflowing every single day.

But that has nothing to do with not loving her. And I think many of us, especially out of our sort of evangelical mindset, is that if we don't feel God and have some sort of ooey-gooey experience with Him, somehow He's not around. Faith is not based on God hears you as much when you feel Him as if you don't feel Him.

In fact, it requires a lot more faith to do what's right when you're not motivated and you don't want to do it. What do I find as you pray through? In the confession, I don't always pray through, but I long to. And what I know, it's these kind of prayers when it's a battle. Elizabeth Elliott has a great little book on prayer, and she has this line in it, and she says, I suppose people who ski like to ski. I suppose they have the ability to ski, and she says they not only have the ability to ski, but they have a place where they can ski.

It's time for skiing, and it's something they do when they have the time and when they have the money. And her confession was, sometimes that's how I pray. I used to think prayer was a lot like skiing. You know, when I'm in the mood to pray, I think I'll pray, and when I can make the time to pray, I think I'll pray, and it really is a nice thing to do if you have the time. And then she has this line, but skiing is a sport, and prayer is work.

It's not skiing. It must be taken from other things that are very important. I've shared this a lot, and I guess I'll keep sharing it. I live with a woman who prays like no one I've ever met. And I mean this. I think I will get to heaven, and I will get to see that I ran many, many errands that God and Teresa had been talking about.

And don't get me wrong. I pray, and I'm growing in my prayer life, but it's interesting. My kids are in a really big jam. Is Mom home?

Why? I need to ask her to really pray. We just have this track record of unbelievable, amazing answers to prayer. We went through a book together, and one of the quotes was from Haddon Robinson.

He was a professor of preaching at Dallas, and then later, I think was the president of Denver Seminary, and then later headed up a department at Gordon-Conwell. And it's a quick quote, but it's now on all of our screens that comes up every day Living on the Edge. Prayer is the battle. Ministry is the spoils. Prayer is the battle.

Ministry is the spoils. It's the kind of prayer that's consistent, it's intense, and then it's strategic. In this he says, I pray for all the saints. God's messengers will be bold. That utterance may be given. It's about God's message.

Warren Wiersbe said, prayer is the energy that allows the soldier to wear the army and wield the sword. And I think when you listen to what Paul prayed, and I'm going to say something only because I think we're missing out. We tend to unconsciously get very self-focused, and what I'm about to say, especially for you, like take it literally people, I'm not saying you shouldn't do this.

What I'm saying is, don't let it get limited to this. We've unconsciously got this idea that we live in this silo, and so Lord help me, help my husband, help my kids, and we've got a need over here, and Grandma's ankle hurts, and Lord would you help our church? And you pray some specific things, and oh gosh, the mall is so full at this time. Would you please, could I get a parking spot like on the first or second floor? And by the way, you know what, I think God hears.

There's nothing too small. But when you read the prayers in scripture, God I pray that you might open their eyes. They might have spiritual discernment to understand who you really are. Lord I pray that they might know the height and depth and length and breadth, and know the love of God that surpasses knowledge. Here he prays, give me utterance and boldness that your message and your messengers, when do we pray?

God, we want to reach the city. God, will you cause these churches to get unified? God, would you do something radical in our culture? Lord, would you cause the gospel to go forth through all the continents? Of course, Paul's praying a missional prayer. Paul's saying, it's not about does my life work out? Am I happy today?

Is my knee feeling a little better? Do I have a parking spot? And again, I'm glad when he answers about my knee, and it is kind of neat when wow, hey there's a parking spot. I think we should let, those are those as you're driving, as you're thinking, you're always talking with the Lord. But there's some times you need to get your armor on, and you need to understand, we have been given a mission to take the gospel to the ends of the earth. And I am in his ambassadors, and I want to pray for the message, and I want to pray for the messenger, and I want him to use me here, and my family here, and my kids, and my grandkids, and this church. He says, ask of me and I will give you the nations. And I think we're asking really small little prayers, and we get really small little answers.

Ask him for big things that you know for sure are on his heart. And you just might be shocked at what the Lord will do. The summary is the missing ingredient in most Christian lives, and in most churches, is a commitment and regular practice of intercessory prayer. Scripture indicates it's individual and corporate consistent, intense, strategic responsibility that will in fact deliver one from evil. I have a quote here that I put in your notes by S.V.

Gordon. Follow along as I read it. And by the way, it is so convicting that maybe that's what we need. The great people of the earth today are the people who pray. I do not mean those who talk about prayer. Nor those who say they believe in prayer. Nor those who can explain about prayer. But I mean people who take time and pray.

They have not the time. It must be taken from something else. This something else is very important and pressing, but still less important and less pressing than prayer. And so I want to pause and just say, okay, we've talked about the reality of a war, of spiritual warfare, a command to stand firm. The way to stand firm is we put on our armor. Okay, we're going to have the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and then we're going to sort of weave all this together with prayer.

And here's the summary statement I really want you to get. It's because this is not about, oh, I came from studying on spiritual warfare, and now I'm either fearful. The great majority of the teaching on spiritual warfare in the Bible has to do with alertness, preparation, defense, and being proactive to prevent demonic influence from breaking our fellowship with Christ and thwarting God's program in our lives.

What are we to do, however, when the enemy gets a foothold in a life, ours or someone we know and love? So what I want you to get is if you walk with God, if you're renewing your mind, if you're listening to Him, if you're in the community of believers, the great majority of the spiritual attack you'll catch, you'll walk with God, but there are times, and this is the big shift, when there's some avenues where the enemy begins to get a foothold, either in your life or someone else's, what do you do? I mean, what are we to make of this whole thing called the ministry of deliverance? The central text of the New Testament on spiritual warfare is Ephesians 6, put on the armor.

Now I want to give you more of an overview, and you'll see I've given you lots of notes and lots of passages. This really is the kind of thing that you need to study and check out and discuss and become aware of, but I think this whole ministry of deliverance is one that is really, there's either huge extremes that you need to avoid or the thought that this never happens anyway. So what I've done is I'm going to talk about its validity, I'm going to talk about the problems of this kind of a ministry, I'm going to talk about the causes of demonic influence, evidences in the New Testament, then I'm going to talk about what specific action steps would normal, ordinary people like us take if there's a clear indication that someone is either oppressed or harassed or actually engaged in ways where demonic influence, and you need to do something about it.

So with that, let's look at the validity of the ministry. Jesus regularly exercised this ministry. If you go through the Gospels, about 25 to 30% of his time and energy is spent casting out demons as one of the things that he does. The apostles regularly exercised this ministry. On their first little mission trip, you remember what he did? He gave them authority over demons and authority to heal as he was going to validate his mission. The early church regularly exercised this ministry. In Acts 16, we have this situation where the occult was so heavy that the people came, remember?

They brought all their satanic books and they burned them. And then Simon saw the power of God even greater and he tried to buy it and he got a sharp rebuke. In the early church, Justin Martyr, Tertullian, Origen, Athanasius, all the way the first 400 years of the church, deliverance ministry from demonic influence, it's a norm.

There's an excellent article you can Google. It's by Paul Thigpen, Discipleship Journal, issue 81, 1994. He does a historic analysis of deliverance ministry from the first 400 years. In fact, in the early church, in the early hundreds of years, they actually had an office of deliverance. So this, for our modern years, America, some of this may sound a little weird, but it's historic.

The other thing is this is not weird around the world. I remember you think as people are modern and sophisticated, of course, in the back in Papua New Guinea, maybe in Thailand or when you're in India, it is, man, there's over a million gods there. We would think of all those things, but I remember being in South Africa and we were at a cemetery and we'd been doing some ministry there and it was a nicer part of town and I watched Mercedes pull up. So these people were wealthy, well-educated, and they all were getting out and they were taking food and flowers and different things and putting them on all these graves.

And I turned to the guy that was with us. I said, what is this all about? Oh, I mean, they're scared to death of ancestral spirits and they have manifestations of things in their home and they're making an offering to the spirits of their father or grandfather or people that are manifesting and they're scared to death. And so can you imagine having a modern mind, a modern job, driving up in a Mercedes and making offerings to ancestral spirits out of fear? Chip's going to be back with his application, but just a quick reminder, this message, How to Gain Deliverance from Demonic Influence, is from Chip's series, The Invisible War, What Every Believer Needs to Know about Satan, Demons, and Spiritual Warfare. He's using Ephesians chapter six to sort out fact from fiction, giving you clear biblical insight on how to think about, prepare for, and engage in spiritual warfare.

Evil is present and active all around us, but as believers, number one, we don't have to be afraid, and number two, equipped with the truth of God's word, we can engage like Jesus did, with truth and amazing grace. This series comes in multiple formats, small group video, either DVD or online streaming with the study guide, audio, and the book. However you like to study, we've got you covered. For all the details, visit us at livingontheedge.org, tap Special Offers on the app, or give us a call at 888-333-6003. That's 888-333-6003. Well, Chip, the last several months have been pretty chaotic for a lot of people, and we get emails and calls from people wondering what kind of limitations the ministry's had from all that's going on, wondering how the ministry's been affected. Dave, thankfully, I have an office and a video and audio studio that I can keep doing work, and I don't think I've ever been busier in my life, and it's happened in ways that we never dreamed. One, we've been able to do things very specifically to help people one-on-one through something called the Daily Discipleship with Chip, where I've literally got to one-on-one coaching with people of how to meet with God and how to mentor people and literally how to experience who you are in Christ. So that's been a lot of energy, and the impact has literally been probably greater than any single thing we've done as we read the emails and talk to people. And then to our delight, we have seen our friends in China take the resources that I'm not at liberty to tell a lot about, but True Spirituality, How to Become a Romans 12 Christian, in numbers that would just absolutely shock you in the midst of all of this, doing training in 18 different cities. And so we are so grateful for those who have given faithfully through this time that have allowed us to do what we're doing.

And now the demands are even greater. So if you have never given to Living on the Edge, now is a really great time. And if you have, thank you so much. You have allowed us to do some things globally and nationally that we never dreamed could happen.

Thank you very much. Well, if partnering with Living on the Edge is an idea that makes sense to you, we'd love to have you join us. Living on the Edge, like Christians, will change the world we live in. To give a gift, just go to livingontheedge.org, tap Donate on the app, or give us a call at 888-333-6003. Your generosity is greatly appreciated. Well, now here's Chip with a final thought about today's message. As we close today's program, we introduced the concept of deliverance ministry. I want to put that on hold for our next broadcast.

Here's the application for today. What I'd like you to do is set your watch, or set aside today, not tomorrow, today, 15 minutes. I mean, if you have a timer, put it on for 15 minutes, and then I want you to pray how you've learned today. Consistent, intense, strategic prayers for 15 minutes and do it today.

If your mind wanders, it wanders. But you do this for 15 minutes, and then you decide for the next few days to pray for 15 minutes. You will see progress, you will see answers, and you'll see deliverance.

And here's a hint. If you struggle, find one or two other people that would be willing to partner in this kind of prayer, and you will start to see amazing things happen. There's a secret weapon. It's called prayer. But it's a special kind of prayer, and you've got to use it. May God bless, encourage, and give you faith as you pray today. .
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-02-02 19:44:50 / 2024-02-02 19:56:32 / 12

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