Extract from our Weekly Bulletin
February 07, 2016
I would like to share an uneasiness that God has placed in my heart.
The uneasiness of seeing how the church is ASLEEP. Don’t get angry, but that is the tremendous truth, asleep whilst being ambushed by the enemy.
The Church seems to act like an ostrich, it hides its head in the ground so it won’t see, because it is unpleasant to see. It does not imagine what its like to hear so many brothers share what they have been through and what they are dragging with them.
Yes, the Lord Jesus forgave their sins and they have accepted His forgiveness but many times they are unable to forgive themselves because the things that they have done have affected the life of others and they aren’t able to forget that.
The apostle Paul says in 2 Corinthians 2:11 “In order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes.” But how many of us ignore his schemes? We believe that we know the devil and time after time he makes fun of us. How many times have we felt that we are strong and firm in the Lord but the word says “So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” (1 Corinthians 10:12)
I would like us to read this passage. In what context does the apostle Paul speak? In the subheading of this section in the NKJV Bible it states “Paul forgives the offender.”
So the forgiver doesn’t allow Satan to gain advantage, this means that my lack of forgiveness causes Satan to take authority in my life.
Some time ago a brother in Christ wasn’t well, we went to speak with him and thank God that this brother is a person of prayer and the Holy Spirit was already working within him. He then realised the schemes of the devil and how he had sent him a dart and he received it, making him see something that we hadn’t even thought of.
The brother acknowledged the scheme of the enemy and from the point he acknowledged it, the enemy could not gain advantage over him and it was another battle the brother won over the devil. If each one of the believers read the book of Ephesians we would realise why the Lord sends us to put on all the armour of God, Ephesians 6:10 begins saying “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armour of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” It continues saying: “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
We find several scriptures that tell us that we need to put on the armour of God so that we can resist the devil and one of the worst problems by which the devil often dominates us is by our lack of forgiveness.
James speaks about the friendship with the world in ch. 4 v. 5 it says “Or do you think Scripture says without reason that the spirit he caused to live in us envies intensely? But he gives us more grace.”
That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.”
And it continues “Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it.”
Therefore God always places forgiveness in front of whoever the devil must free from. It is up to us if the enemy will have something of which to take hold of us and won’t allow us to advance and that is what happens in the Church today. The brethren don’t forgive each other, they gossip about one another but let us recall that the Lord says that He is among us which means He is hearing what you are talking about.
For years I have heard brethren pray for the pastors with the word of Isaiah 54:17 “No weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and this is their vindication from me,” declares the LORD.” With a tremendous sadness however I have heard these same individuals, who pray with this scripture, speaking badly of their pastors without realising that they are condemning themselves by the prayer they just made. Colossians 3:5-17 (special note v. 14) and the “Our Father” is one of the clearest passages in the Bible about forgiveness. Matthew 6:14 says “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” and elsewhere He also says that we will be measured with the same rod we measure others and judged with the same judgement that we judge others.
Therefore beloved, the Word exhorts us first to forgive, to strengthen ourselves in the Lord, to know the schemes of the enemy so that he cannot defeat us and that we be humble. That’s something that is difficult to all human beings but time after time God tells us to humble ourselves under the powerful hand of God and He will raise us up in His time. He also says “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land” 2 Chronicles 7:14
I believe that it is time for us to awaken and stand shoulder to shoulder, to be able to face the enemy. The Lord sent us in twos, do you remember? Back to back so that nobody can do us any harm, not face to face to fight against each other.
God Bless You,
Ps. Marisa Varjabedian