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Tag Archives: gates of hell

Our Victory is in Christ

Now that we’ve seen the war against the flesh and the world, we’ll move on to the final battle.  We’re in a war against the spiritual forces of the kingdom of Satan.

As I’ve already written about, the people around us are not the enemy.  They’re prisoners of war in the spiritual battle.  They’re being held captive by the world system under the control of the devil.

It’s up to us, God’s people, to set them free and bring them to the cross.  That’s where they can find true salvation for their souls.

In order for that to happen, there are some things that we need to understand.  We can’t go into this battle with only half the information.

The first thing that we have to realize is that Christ has already won the war.

And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.
Colossians 2:15

Jesus Christ has once and for all won the victory over all the power of the enemy kingdom.  However, that doesn’t mean that the fighting has stopped.

Just like in WWII, when the Axis powers collapsed, the Allied forces had to mop up the remaining troops.  They had to enter the concentration camps and free the surviving prisoners.  That’s where we are in the spiritual war today.

The trouble is that even in defeat, the enemy is dangerous.  He wants as few people as possible to be set free by the knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Just how do we thwart the devil’s plans?  The Lord already took care of this.  Look at what Christ said to His followers.

“I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.”
Luke 10:19

The same power over the enemy that the Lord walked in has been conferred upon us.  We have authority over the enemy’s kingdom.  Of course, the devil would like that to remain a carefully guarded secret.

As long as we look to the future for our victory, we’ll never see the enemy kingdom back down.  We must learn to walk in the authority of Christ that we’ve already been given.

We need to see a God’s-eye-view of the spiritual war.

“…I will build my church, and the gates of Hades [Hell] will not overcome it.”
Matthew 16:18b

We have to come to the realization that the gates of Hell don’t move.  They don’t attack the church.  These gates are fixed around what the enemy already possesses and he’s trying to keep hold of.

The gates of Hell are around our centers of education.  They surround our political systems.  They’re also around our entertainment industry.

What we need to see is that it’s not an insurmountable obstacle.  The gates of Hell – all the power of the enemy – cannot withstand an attack by God’s people walking in the anointing of the Holy Spirit.

Too often we try to infiltrate these areas of society using the rules of the world.  That’s why we only achieve limited success.  We need to learn to take this battle into the spiritual realm.

I’m going to take a few posts to talk about what God has given us in order to walk in the victory that Christ has already won for us.

Question: What are the spiritual battles that you’re facing right now?

© 2020 Nick Zaccardi

 
 

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God’s Word – The Sword

SwordI want to take a few posts to talk about the greatest weapon that we’ve been given. Without it we’ll never overcome the enemy. Unfortunately, many Christians have never even picked it up.

Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Ephesians 6:17

This verse is talking about the authority and power of God. He wants to work this through us. In order for that to happen, we must use what He’s given to us. The greatest gift we could be given is the sword of the spirit – the rhema- word of God.

Remember, we’re talking about the armor of God. This is His personal armor and weaponry. That means that this is the sword of the Lord.

Our knowledge of this got watered down over time; especially since the advent of the printing press. With the proliferation of Scripture we have come to assume that whenever we read word of God, it means the Bible.

Please don’t turn me off before I explain this next statement. It may come as a shock to you. You might even think that I’m in error. But the fact is that a careful reading of Scripture will bear me out.

The Bible is not our sword of the spirit. The sword Paul is talking about is a spiritual weapon that wreaks havoc on the enemy.

It’s clear from the Bible and our experience that the devil doesn’t fear the Bible. He actually has it memorized. He even does his best to use it against us. He tried to use it against Jesus – and failed miserably.

Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: “‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.'”
Matthew 4:5-6

The devil doesn’t fear to hear or use the Bible. According to the verse from Ephesians it’s the rhema of God that’s our spiritual weapon.

Does that mean I don’t need the Bible? Absolutely not! We’re to study to show ourselves approved.

“If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?”
John 5:46-47

In the literal Greek of this verse, Jesus said, “If you don’t believe what was written, how will you believe my rhema?” It’s the knowledge of Scripture that gives us the foundation we need to hear, trust and obey God’s word to us.

That’s what the sword of the spirit is all about. The Greek word Rhema is the revealed word of God to me…and to you. That’s the greatest weapon of the church – God speaking to us.

Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.”
Matthew 16:16-18

Christ is building His church on the rock of the revealed will of God. It’s that word of God that brings the victory. The gates of hell can’t stand against it. It’s this revealed word of God that I want to talk about for a few posts.

Question: How has God spoken to you personally in the past?

© Nick Zaccardi 2016

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2016 in Faith, Power of God, Word of God

 

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In the Battle – Like it or Not

SwordIn many instances in the Scripture our spiritual walk is described as a battle. Light vs. darkness; Heaven vs. hell; good vs. evil. We need to know how to live with this truth.

Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
Ephesians 6:17-18

In this verse, Paul is talking about the authority and power of God. He wants to work these through us. There’s a battle raging on the earth right now. Unfortunately, many don’t even care about it. Do you?

The last sentence of this quote is very important. It literally says, attending to this with all persistency and petition around all the saints. The emphasis is that this is encompassing all the saints.

The battle is all around you whether you want it or not. That’s why the apostle uses such strong language in his exhortation.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 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. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
Ephesians 6:10-13

Think about the church today. Picture the body of believers as an army standing before hell’s gates. Jesus said that the gates of hell would not prevail against the church. The question is; are we that victorious church that the Lord was talking about?

We should be, and in some areas there are local churches that have the enemy on the run. But that’s not the case everywhere. Are all the believers in their spiritual armor? Are all believers even willing to fight this spiritual battle? I don’t think so.

What about the enemy’s kingdom? Are they ready? Absolutely. They understand what’s at stake and they’re in it for the long haul. They won’t give in without a fight.

Right now the arrows of the enemy are flying all around us. Arrows are the first strike weapon. The truth is that you don’t have to be in the fight to be hit by an arrow. That’s why believers are encouraged to take the spiritual armor seriously.

How do you take the stronghold from the enemy? First, you put on the armor and pick up your shield. Behind the gates are the prisoners that need to be set free.

Understand this, as you approach the gates the fight goes from general to personal. It gets to the point where it’s one on one.

Paul is not talking to all believers here, but to the faithful. That’s who I’m talking to as well. The believers who want to make a difference in the world around them. For the next few posts I want to talk about this spiritual battle that we face on a daily basis. I’ll use Christ as our example for how to live an overcoming lifestyle.

Question: How is your life affected by the spiritual battle?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 

 
 

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