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Discussion Forum : General Topics : Designs of Darkness: Advanced Tactics of Spiritual Warfare

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PaulWest
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Joined: 2006/6/28
Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re: Chapter One - The Secret War

*original post edited and republished


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Paul Frederick West

 2013/1/17 14:09Profile
PaulWest
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Joined: 2006/6/28
Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re: Chapter One - The Secret War (continued)

Those who have been chosen of God to radiate the life of His Son in this war are given a daily death sentence. This death sentence consists of eclipsing the desires of the flesh so that Christ might have preeminence through their vessels. This measure of flesh-eclipsing is proportionate to the diligence one maintains in walking in the spirit. And walking in the spirit requires a deliberate daily resolve. It involves a conscientious effort in guarding our minds from evil thought-patterns and ever realigning them Heavenward (Luke 9:23; John 3:27,30; Romans 8:13; I Corinthians 15:31; II Corinthians 10:5; Colossians 3:5; Hebrews 12:2; I Peter 1:13; I John 5:11).

What many believers do not realize is that this world has been designed by Satan to prevent this realignment. That Satan is the ruler of this world is without doubt. Through his rule, even the basic God-ordained requirements of food for sustenance and intimacy for procreation have been diabolically perverted by the constant bombardment of advertisements to the flesh. In every corner of this world, we find humankind hopelessly entrenched in the satiation of the flesh. Being dead in sin and blind to the majesty of God, man's habitation is consigned to a dismal and empty plane of Adamic carnality. The grand design of spiritual darkness is to ensure his spirit eyes are never opened, and if they are, never elevated. If we take too light an approach to this awareness, we will soon be derailed and devoured by the roaring lion who pulls the strings and works the levers of this ruined world (Genesis 6:5; John 12:31; 14:30; 16:11; Romans 1:24; II Corinthians 4:4; Ephesians 2:2,5; Philippians 3:19; I John 5:19).

The gaze by which we train our spirits on Him who is altogether lovely is subject to gravity. It takes real effort to resist the pull and maintain a daily loftiness of faith, trust and spiritual integrity toward God. The fight the old saints wrote so prolifically of, and the fearsome war in which the Christian must for a lifetime engage, is not to be found against flesh and blood, but in the maintenance of this unfettered gaze upward. Devils and charlatan preachers, humanistic philosophies and the quest for money are just some of the many different lead weights used by the enemy to sink our minds down into the dregs of carnal rapport. When the mind becomes preoccupied with fleshly pursuits, the vibrancy of communion between our spirits and His becomes eclipsed. Darkness then prevails upon light, and the soldier is drawn from the safety of the Cleft into the open battlefield where he is soon ensnared by the baiting of his own lust (Song of Solomon 5:16; Matthew 7:15; I Corinthians 10:4; Galatians 5:16, 19-21; Ephesians 6:12; Colossians 2:8; James 1:14; I Timothy 6:10; II Timothy 2:22; II Peter 2:1).


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Paul Frederick West

 2013/1/17 22:55Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7452
Mississippi

 Re: Chapter One - The Secret War (continued)

It IS a war, of that there is no doubt. And the older you get the worse it IS.
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QUOTE:
"When the mind becomes preoccupied with fleshly pursuits, the vibrancy of communion between our spirits and His becomes eclipsed."
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So true.

Yes, that Mortification thread was very good. That one and the one "Let's Talk About Peace" are among my favorite threads on SI.

I had that mortification thread in mind when I wrote about Lazarus some time ago. I still find it utterly fascinating how Jesus took a dead body - four days dead - and resurrected it! I suppose you could see into it better then me because of your vocation. In any case, I find this miracle among the most profound in the NT. Apparently the Jewish leaders did as well because they wanted to kill Lazarus! Makes me wonder how they thought they could kill him and that he would stay dead - Jesus just might resurrect him the second time! Kind of funny to think about...


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Sandra Miller

 2013/1/18 22:55Profile
PaulWest
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Joined: 2006/6/28
Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re:

Quote:
I still find it utterly fascinating how Jesus took a dead body - four days dead - and resurrected it! I suppose you could see into it better then me because of your vocation. In any case, I find this miracle among the most profound in the NT.


Good thoughts sister. Lazarus's resurrection to me is a picture of our own spirits laying dead in tombs of darkness, mummy-wrapped in graveclothes of iniquity and bondage. Not only are we dead, but our spirits fester in the rancid putrefaction of sin and trespasses. Our spirits are held in death until One stronger than death comes to liberate them with Light and Life. Enter Jesus of Nazareth.

But that is not all. The miracle of Lazarus' resurrection also teaches me about evangelism. I have come to see true evangelism as "raising the dead" through the preached blood of Christ. It is in the vacuum of spiritual darkness, where the light of Christ is meant to invade. Notice that Lazarus lay dead in his crypt until the invitation, "Come forth!" burst thorugh the darkness with divine animation. As earthen vessels carrying Christ's light, we are called to project this same life-giving invitation into the crypt which is this present evil world. But who will go amongst the wicked principalities and hellish phantoms to rescue the dead? I believe there are yet many Lazaruses waiting to come forth from their tombs, set free by the preached blood of Christ.


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Paul Frederick West

 2013/1/19 10:32Profile
ginnyrose
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Joined: 2004/7/7
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 Re:

Paul, I may be running ahead of you, hope not, but I hope you will address the issue of how the devil counterfeits the work of the Holy Spirit in areas of conviction of sin.


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Sandra Miller

 2013/1/19 13:17Profile
PaulWest
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Joined: 2006/6/28
Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re:

Quote:
Paul, I may be running ahead of you, hope not, but I hope you will address the issue of how the devil counterfeits the work of the Holy Spirit in areas of conviction of sin.


Excellent point. False conviction was expanded upon in my first book "Understanding Mortification", as well as the trap of false peace. It is brought up again in this series. Thank you for bringing this up!


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Paul Frederick West

 2013/1/19 13:24Profile
MrBillPro
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Joined: 2005/2/24
Posts: 3224
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 Re:

This is probably one of the best threads I have seen here in 8 years. Keep it coming!


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Mr. Bill

 2013/1/19 15:06Profile
PaulWest
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Posts: 3405
Dallas, Texas

 Re: Chapter Two: A Correct Understanding of Christian Victory

2. A Correct Understanding of Christian Victory

Many believers have a wrong understanding of Christian victory. They think victory is an unbroken span of sinless perfection where one does not transgress in word, thought or action. But this alone is an inaccurate picture of triumph. True victory, true triumph in Christ leading from glory to glory is actually comprised of segments of overcoming linked together by confession and subsequent blood-washing. There is not a Christian alive who can get through a day without having to acknowledge the impurity of some internal revelation brought by the Holy Spirit, according to his or her current light (Psalms 84:7; II Corinthians 3:18; Philippians 3:12-21; I John 1:8; 2:1).

The Holy Spirit is always faithful to bring knowledge of sin to the understanding of the child of God. This is the purpose of light. Victory is not so much resisting darkness as it is returning to the light. Every Christian is able, in some capacity, to resist darkness in the face of the light he or she currently has. The problem arises when one enters into varying degrees of darkness minus the corresponding grace of God. A believer may be plagued with a sense of impurity, and yet, opposing, confessing and repenting of the impurity constitutes an on-going victory. This victory is granted through the instantaneous effect of blood-cleansing (John 16:8; I Corinthians 10:3; 14:24; II Corinthians 2:19; Philippians 3:16; Hebrews 4:12; II Peter 2:9).

It is therefore not the person who hides an outbreak of sin who is counted victorious, for these flesh-stiflings are merely a masking; a mortal concealment, a clever corking of a volcanic eruption occurring beneath the surface of the skin. It is not the believer who plugs the volcano, but he confesses and turns from the lava as it burns his conscience who is counted truly victorious. He needs no cork at all, for the grace-filled blood of Christ is able to make the fire recede. The instantaneous effect of the blood is one of cooling, one of healing, one of fire-recession, absolute cleansing and instant restoration (Matthew 11:29; Luke 11:39; Ephesians 2:13; Hebrews 4:3; 9:14; I John 1:9).

The periods between these sinful impulses and their cooling are linked by the blood of Jesus Christ, and these are what present a sense of triumph to the child of God. Without the blood, the cork of the law is needed to stop the volcano from erupting and overflowing out through the flesh. This corking via the law is where many believers become injured, having fallen prey to legalistic teachings which thrive through self-condemnation.

To avoid the pitfalls of legalism, the child of God needs to have an understanding of the instantaneous effect of Christ's blood and how it relates to victory. The sooner this truth is appropriated by faith, the sooner the cork of the law can be rendered obsolete. How we regard the cork is, in fact, all the difference between the Old and New Covenants. A gradual cooling beneath the surface of the volcano should be the normal condition for all New Covenant believers - with those being more mature in God laying hold of His grace more habitually for the cooling.

But for those who suffer on account of an occasional flare-up in the flesh, they should know that upsets are the Father's way of making the way of the cross even more precious, more attractive, more needful. We often see that through the rain-watered ashes of a burnt forest, new seedlings spring forth into life. Victory, like the trees of a burnt forest, will be restored with instantaneous effect, when the heart is humbled unto confession and washed.

The period of blue sky and volcanic dormancy will grow longer in time, and the more the Christian grows in grace, the more he will learn of the power of the blood of Jesus in conjunction with the Spirit’s grace. The Holy Spirit is ever-faithful to alert the conscience of impending eruptions. If the conscience happens to get burnt during this discovery, do not allow yourself to come under condemnation but confess the burn immediately. Let this practice become a habit, and you will be well on your way to greater revelations in the Word, anointing in your ministry, and extended sojournings in victory.


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Paul Frederick West

 2013/1/19 17:17Profile
Compton
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 Re:

Quote:
The Christian life is a secret war. It is a war unlike any other ever waged in the history of the world, for it is fought within the secret hills and valleys of a battlefield which carnal eyes cannot see. The fighting is hidden, the suffering is silent.


The soldiers who fight and fall, only to get back up and continue fighting are granted measures of ever-increasing light. They are protected by God and enjoy divine rejuvenation daily. Their many wounds are treated; their souls are healed. If they continue to fight and not abandon rank, they are promised food, armor and restored health. They are assured of final victory...



This is a powerful picture of our invisible reality.

MC


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Mike Compton

 2013/1/19 17:36Profile
used4him
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Joined: 2011/9/3
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 Re: Designs of Darkness: Advanced Tactics of Spiritual Warfare

Thank you Paul West for all the study you have done, and the words written here. I am guessing that you have written due to personal experience. That is always what makes what is written more effective. I have a mental picture of a soldier greeting Jesus in heaven with shiny new looking armour on, and another one has beat up, dirty armour. Which do you think Jesus will say to: "well done, good and faithful servant?"

 2013/1/19 17:58Profile





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