10 The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).
In the wake of another school shooting, once again the nation rages against itself.
Social justice warriors on one side gear up to scream about gun control, stricter legislation and social reforms.
On the other side we have elite patriots who talk about bringing back public executions, armed guards in schools and more decisive and swift punishments.
My pastor recently preached a sermon about doctrine and to illustrate his points he used the analogy of there being a left ditch, a right ditch and the road.
I am going to borrow from that analogy but with a different set of points.
As Americans, we can have differing political viewpoints. That is our right as American citizens.
We can agree to disagree on what is the best methodology on going about combating these kinds of tragedies in our nation.
As believers however, our weapons of warfare on these matters cannot be carnal. Our hopes for justice cannot lie in fractured and imperfect ideologies on social justice.
As believers, our response cannot be to take up the sword and to rule through violence and fear.
As believers, we do have power, authority and means to change our world but it is not through natural means alone.
The change does not come through wielding our intellects or our fists. Those measures only bring about temporary measures that eventually lead to more problems.
No, our weapons are much greater than those things alone:
2 Corinthians 10:3-5
3 For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons.
4 For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds,
5 [Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One),
To truly kill evil, you must slay the head.
To do that, we as believers must once again begin to understand that the battle is against an enemy that exists in the supernatural.
12 For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere.
13 Therefore put on God’s complete armor, that you may be able to resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place].
If we have a supernatural enemy, then we too must fight back through the supernatural.
To be effective, the church must once again embrace the fullness of our authority and power through the Spirit of God that lives in us, once again becoming a nation that prays, that believes, that seeks the presence, power and gifts of Holy Spirit to have dominance in our lives, families and communities.
For too long the church has adopted systems and standards of thinking of the world. Relying on psychology and placing the value systems established by the world’s way of appraising people in the church.
It is time once again for the church to turn the world upside down. Not through politics, not through public demonstrations but through the love and power of God.
We must once again allow Holy Spirit to create a culture of love and honor within our churches and see this overflow into our communities and schools through which the Spirit of God Himself will teach an inherent value of life and people.
We must like Jesus Christ our example, lead with love and to see value and greatness where the world says there is no value and that love and kindness are not deserved.
It is time for the church to take up these supernatural weapons of warfare – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control; those things which are given and instilled by the Holy Spirit.
It is time that we become a nation that prays and fasts instead of a nation of good vibes and good feelings.
It is time to begin speaking the words of life over our children. To speak the promises of the word of God over them and to claim them for the kingdom of God.
Jesus gave us the power to bind and to lose.
Our mouths can bring forth life or death. Our confessions can change the atmosphere that we and our families encounter and live in.
We can give charge over angels in the lives of those we love and around us.
Will we as believers rise up and assert our God given and promised power and authority by faith, or will be continue to put our confidence in the laws, politics and intellect of men?
My pastor once shared that God spoke to him about the importance of believing that God is greater than our culture.
God has the power to create a new culture – one of love and honor but it is perpetuated by His body.
It begins with the voice and the action of His people.
I mourn for the loss of these young people who have lost their lives so tragically. I mourn for their families who feel such a deep sense of loss.
I even mourn for the shooter who gave into the lies of the enemy and now has a destroyed life set before him.
Most of all, I mourn for this nation. I mourn for a nation that God so desperately loves and that Jesus Christ died for but is trapped in the prison of sin and separation from relationship with God.
My heart is heavy because the enemy has had a stronghold on our people for so long.
So my prayer is the following scriptures; Act 2:17, Jeremiah 50. I ask that you join me in declaring these things over our nation.
Lord in these end days, pour out your Spirit on all mankind. Let your power be demonstrated on earth as it has never been before.
Let words of life come forth, let your heart be proclaimed and your love demonstrated in a way that shakes the earth to its core.
Visit us in our dreams and invade our hearts and minds giving us new paradigms of your love and goodness.
Raise up and fight for us. Let your goodness be known in such a way that this land comes to you with weeping.
That we would once again seek you and ask the way to return to Jerusalem.
Help us to find our way back home again and to bind ourselves in covenant to you forever.
We have been a nation of lost sheep, unable to find our way home. Led astray by shepherds, we have been devoured by our enemies as we roamed lost in the mountains and wilderness.
Father, restore our hearts and minds back to you.
Bring peace through the Prince of Peace who is Jesus Christ the Firstborn of God.
Lead us into repentance with your goodness and lead us into abundant life through revelation by your Holy Spirit.
Bind up the broken hearted and let the good news of your love be proclaimed throughout our land and to all people.
Make us mighty weapons in your hand to defeat the enemy and to break the jaw of all powers, principalities and spiritual wickedness that has camped over our cities.
Let love lead and reign in our hearts for one another and that all we are and do be ruled and motivated by your love at work in us.
In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.