Text: 2 Corinthians 10:3-6
As a believer, you belong to the Lord; body, soul and spirit from the moment you are saved. But much of our life may still be occupied by pockets of resistance, concepts, habits and thought systems not in agreement with the Word or Will of God.
There are believers today in bondage in various areas of their lives. They have tried everything to gain freedom, but to no avail. I believe strongholds are the leading cause of emotional disorders and are a great hindrance to balanced spiritual growth in the spiritual life.
If we will deal with these trouble areas as possible strongholds we will see immediate results and begin to experience a new measure of freedom in our life.
The good news is Jesus came with the anointed and appointed ministry “to proclaim liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to them that are bound” (Isa. 61:1).
Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal, and kill and destroy, I have come that they might have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10). NIV
This is the believer’s legal inheritance.
A. A stronghold is:
- An area where spiritual darkness reigns.
- Spiritual darkness exists where there is the absence of spiritual truth.
- Psalms 119:130, “The entrance of Thy Words giveth light, it giveth understanding to the simple.”
- If there is the slightest area of our lives where the light of God’s truth has not shone, the enemy is sure to make the most of it.
2. Anything in us strong enough to keep us from becoming like Christ in an area of life is a stronghold.
- The word stronghold in Greek means, “a hard place.”
- It refers to a place on the battlefield that is an entrenchment or a fortress.
- Any place there is a fixed set of ideas, a mind set, thoughts and behavior in conflict with revealed truth, you can suspect a stronghold.
- A command post from which the enemy works in surrounding areas.
- He may not have jurisdiction in other areas, but from the place where ideas are accepted he can exert influence over nearby areas of the human psyche.
- 2 Cor. 2:11, “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.”
- 1 Peter 5:8, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”
- A thought pattern alien to the Word of God
- One commentator defines a stronghold as “a house made of thoughts.”
- When people come to the Lord, their fight with the Lord is over, but their fight with the devil is not over.
- The battle now rages for control of the thought life.
- The new life requires a disciplined mind. God expects a complete shift in thinking. “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5).
- The last thing in the world satan wants is a renewed mind which produces a changed life.
- A place where the enemy’s thoughts seem more credible than our thoughts or God’s thoughts.
- In Eph. 4:27 Paul warns, “neither give place to the devil.”
- This warning makes it clear that the Christian can admit the enemy to a place in his or her life and should constantly be on guard lest it happen.
- Since satan cannot touch our wills, he works on something that influences our will – and that is our thought life.
- He does this by the power of suggestion
- He is ever ready with endless suggestions for the thought life. This is how he exercises dominion in a Christian’s life and his influence will remain as long as that stronghold is not brought down.
d. Satan is a master at suggestions. He’s had several thousand years practice in using them.
- He knows it’s one of the greatest means of motivating people to do or not do something.
- His knowledge of human weaknesses helps him to design suggestions especially fitted to each individual.
- When he deposits his suggestion – it is sent into our thought life as an idea.
- Since those ideas come from within us, if we’re not spiritually aware, we’ll naturally view them as our own.
- Therefore, Christians need the discipline of examining their thought life and watching for satanic influence.
- This is the reason the Word of God says, “Bringing every thought into captivity unto the obedience of Christ.”