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Matthew 10:1 Jesus called His twelve disciples together and gave them authority to cast out evil spirits and to heal every kind of disease and illness.

We have the authority to cast out demonic spirits in a person, but it won’t work unless that person wants those spirits gone and they continue to renew their minds with the word of God to keep them out (Rom. 12:2).

We also have authority to heal every kind of disease in a person. But like demonic influences, it won’t work unless that person wants it gone and they renew their minds to keep it gone.

There are some who believe if they get sick, it’s the Lord’s will. We can attempt to cast out that sickness, but if they feel it’s their cross to bear, that sickness will remain.

There are some who are suffering with sickness and would rather see Jesus. We can attempt to pray that sickness out, but if they would rather be with Jesus than to be healed, there’s nothing we can do. We shouldn’t blame God for them not being healed or think our authority is not working. They believed for life with the Father instead of life on earth and we can’t override their will.

Our faith and authority over demonic spirits and sicknesses will always work, but we must be in 100% agreement with the other person for their deliverance.

Matthew 10:1 And when He had called unto Him His twelve disciples, He gave them power against unclean spirits to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.

In part 1 of Why It Doesn’t Work, we discovered our prayers won’t work if it violates someone’s free will. If someone desires to continue a bad habit, our prayers won’t be impactful unless they want to change.

Again, we have authority over demonic influences that encourage people to do things contrary to God’s will. Another reason why our prayer won’t seem to work on someone is because they let demonic influences back in by not renewing their minds.

Let’s say we rebuke the spirit of fear in a person who wants to be delivered from fear. A week later, they’re saying how scared they are of what’s going on in the economy. Why didn’t it work? If that person lets the news tell them how bad the economy is all day and they never spend any time renewing their mind with God’s word, they’ve allowed the spirit of fear back in.

The same thing applies to pride, anger, worry, or negativity. If a person keeps mentally rehearsing or speaking on how they were treated, the influence to be angry will remain.

The impact of our prayer will be short-circuited because they allowed the demonic influence of whatever back in. After we pray out the demonic influences in a person, we should encourage them to renew their minds with the word of God (Romans 12:2). Then, we will see transformation.

Matthew 10:1 And when He had called unto Him His twelve disciples, He gave them power against unclean spirits to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.

Jesus gave us (His followers) authority over demonic spirits. That means any demonic influences within a person, we have the authority and capability to remove. There’s one caveat. No one can override another person’s free will.

So, if a person likes what that unclean spirit is producing in their flesh, we can “in the name of Jesus” that spirit all day long, but it won’t work.

For instance, demonic influences encourage people to smoke. When a person smokes, they may like how it makes them feel to the point where they don’t want to quit. We can’t override their will and make them quit in Jesus’ name. It won’t work unless they want to quit. The same thing applies to excessive drinking, sexual sins, drugs, overeating, or any other bad habit.

So, what are we to do? Continue to bind demonic influences within that person and loose ministering spirits that will hopefully encourage that person to want to quit (Matthew 16:19).

Don’t be discouraged. Our God-given authority over demons still works. It’s just some people simply have no desire to stop something that’s negatively impacting their lives.

“As for Me, behold, My covenant is with you, and you shall be a father of many nations. No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you a father of many nations. -Genesis 17:4‭-‬5 NKJV

People often call it how they see it. That’s exactly what we should NOT do if the circumstances are negative. We’re to call the situation how we want it to be.

God changed Abram’s name to Abraham. Abraham means father of many. So, every time he tells someone his name, he’s telling them he’s the father of many. Anytime he’s called by someone, they are calling him father of many. Without a single child, God had him calling himself father of many. Eventually, Abraham got to a point where he was totally convinced he would be a father of many. And it came to pass.

We can and should apply the same strategy. We should call ourselves or a situation something that it’s currently not.

Abram didn’t have any children at the time, but he called himself a father of many. We may have little to no money in the bank, but we should call ourselves wealthy. We may be barren now, but we should call ourselves a mother/father of two. We may feel unwell, but we decree we’re healed.

Anything we want to be, say it. Saying what we desire will strengthen our faith and change any negative into a positive.

1 Corinthians 6:9‭-‬10 Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God.

If we stop right here and pull these two scriptures out, it looks like those who practice these sexual sins, thieves, and drunkards will not inherit the Kingdom of God and they will go to hell. Some people use these scriptures as justification for behaving a certain way in order to go to heaven. This is NOT true. We must continue reading. Look at verse 11.

Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God -1 Corinthians 6:11.

Paul is saying these people participated in these sins, BUT they have been cleansed and made right and holy by accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior.

Jesus died on the cross for ALL of our past, present, and future sins. Once we accept Jesus as Lord, we’re made right and all our sins have been forgiven. So, those who are hanging their hat on 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 to justify that bad behavior will send us to hell don’t believe Jesus’ sacrifice was enough. They believe they have to earn their ticket to heaven with good behavior. How is this any different from living by the law?

Jesus’ sacrifice is enough. We have been made righteous and all of our sins are forgiven. Once we accept that, we won’t want to sin. Let’s COMPLETELY read the scriptures in context and stop believing doctrines made from one or two verses.

Matthew 8:16 NLT That evening many demon-possessed people were brought to Jesus. He cast out the evil spirits with a simple command, and he healed all the sick.

Many times we think we need to yell, pray for a long time, or say 5 scriptures when it comes to casting out demonically influenced people. Jesus cast them out by keeping it simple. Although it doesn’t say exactly what He said in this instance, I could imagine it was simple “be gone.”

For the record, demon possessed people are not always throwing up green vomit or speaking in a strange voice like in the movie The Exorcist. Demonically possessed people are people who are mean, abusive, alcohol or drug dependent, unfair, or extremely critical. All of these behaviors have a demonic influence behind them. And according to Luke 10:19, we have power over demonic spirits. It says, behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

Whether a person is doing something strange or has a bad attitude, when it comes to demonic spirits, no need to have a long drawn out prayer and there’s no reason to be scared. Use the authority God has given us to cast it out and keep it simple.

Numbers 23:19 God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: hath He said, and shall He not do it? or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good?

This scripture can speak for itself.
Whatever God told you in His written word or through the Holy Spirit, He will do. He’s not going to change His mind and He’s not going to renege on His promise. It’s already done, but it has to materialize in this physical world.

Whatever God said is not going to happen automatically or because we’re born-again. It’s going to happen because we used faith to obtain it. Faith is believing God’s word and acting on what we believe.

If we truly grasp the truth that God can’t lie, it makes it easier to believe and trust Him. Place your faith in God.

Matthew 8:13 Then Jesus said to the Roman officer, “Go back home. Because you believed, it has happened.” And the young servant was healed that same hour.

In the Kingdom of God, belief is what’s needed to bring our desires to pass. It’s not good behavior, it’s not obeying the law of Moses, it’s not money. It’s belief.

When we believe that Jesus has made all of God’s promises available to us according to 2 Corinthians 1:20, we’ll begin to see and experience those promises.

Negative circumstances we currently are experiencing and delay are usually the things that cripple our belief. However, if we choose to look beyond the circumstances and not be shaken by how long it’s taking and continue to believe His word, we’ll have everything we’ll ever need and desire.

Continue to believe and it will happen.

He takes no pleasure in the strength of a horse or in human might. No, the Lord’s delight is in those who fear him, those who put their hope in his unfailing love. -Psalms 147:10‭-‬11 NLT

There are people who are trying to be successful using their own skills, intelligence, and might. They’re not seeking God. They’re doing whatever needs to be done in their own strength.

Based on scripture, it doesn’t please God when we try to do anything ourselves. God wants us to totally depend on Him. When a situation arises, God wants us to rely on Him throughout that situation.

The situation doesn’t have to be negative for us to seek Him. We may have two house or job options. Instead of relying on logic, let’s seek His advice. He simply wants us to rely on Him.

Yes, we’re smart, strong, gifted, and talented, but let’s rely on God instead of ourselves.

Genesis 1:2 The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. 3 Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

In verse 2, God naturally saw a dark, formless, and empty earth. In verse 3, God changed what He saw in the natural by SPEAKING what He desired which was light.

We may have a life, marriage, or career that feels empty and dark. We may have thought it would be a certain way, but it’s not turning out how we desired. That’s okay. We can use our God-given authority and the power of our words to change any negative situation.

Some may say, they can’t change their circumstances because they’re not God. This is true. We’re not God Almighty, but He’s given us His authority and He’s given us power in our words just like Him. Matthew 16:19 says, And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. Whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven.Matthew 21:21 Then Jesus told them, “I tell you the truth, if you have faith and don’t doubt, you can do things like this and much more. You can even SAY to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and it will happen.

Between these two scriptures above, God has given us the authority and our words to change whatever is negative. At the very beginning of the bible, God is showing us how to operate in this earth. I dare you to believe you have this God-given authority and continuously exercise the power of words until change manifests.

Proverbs 23:7a For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.

What we think about ourselves is often what we portray and become. If we think we’re less than, no good, or can’t get right, we’ll always be that. If we have a lack of confidence, people will see that and we’ll be seen as insignificant.

On the other hand, if we see ourselves how God sees us, we’ll have an unshakable confidence and we’ll experience God’s best. Hebrews 10:35 says, do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.

Some of the ways we think about ourselves come from the ones closest to us. If our parents or siblings told us we’re not as good as or smart, we’ll have a distorted view of ourselves. When we have poor self-image, we must read God’s word and consume what it says about us and believe it. We must read it over and over again to remove the negativity from our minds.

It all starts in the mind.

John 2:5 NLT But his mother told the servants, “Do whatever He tells you.”

Faith is what brings God’s promises to pass. What positions us to receive God’s promise is obedience. It’s doing what the Holy Spirit leads us to do.

We can believe God for something for years, but if we don’t obey the Holy Spirit as He leads, we’ll never have what we desire.

You may want a particular car in red. You believe God for it, confess that it’s yours, and you’re in expectation for it. The Holy Spirit may direct you to go to the dealership on the other side of town. You have a choice to make. You can say to yourself it’s too far and you don’t remember seeing it online or you can obey. If you obey, there’s a possibility you’ll see the car you desire for a lower price.

You may have pain in your back. God tells you to stop eating after 9:00pm. In your mind, you may be thinking what does that have to do with the pain in my back? As you obey, somehow your back gets better.

What if the car isn’t there and my back doesn’t feel better? You exercised your obedience muscle and in some way God’s word promises you’ll experience something good because you obeyed (Isaiah 1:19).

For the promises of God to manifest, I’ll echo the words of Mary. Do whatever He (the Holy Spirit) tells you.

Psalms 25:12‭-‬13 NLT Who are those who fear the Lord? He will show them the path they should choose. They will live in prosperity, and their children will inherit the land.

God, the Creator of the universe and the One who knows all things, will show us what path to choose if we honor and reverence Him. That’s a great deal because every decision we make will positively or negatively impact our lives. So, as we honor God, He’ll show us the paths we should take that will positively impact our lives. That’s a fantastic deal. You can’t be that.
Wait… there’s more.

Not only will our Father show us the best paths to take, but He promised we’ll live in prosperity and our children will receive an inheritance. Wow, that’s huge. Especially, if we know God cannot lie (Numbers 23:19). If He promised something, it has to come to pass (Luke 1:37). That means we’ll have prosperity in our health, marriage, finances, career, etc. We’ll be prosperous to the point where our children will inherit what we own.

All of this can be ours if we simply honor and reverence our Father. Take advantage of His plan to bless our lives.

Hannah was in deep anguish, crying bitterly as she prayed to the Lord. And she made this vow: “O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, if you will look upon my sorrow and answer my prayer and give me a son, then I will give him back to you. He will be yours for his entire lifetime, and as a sign that he has been dedicated to the Lord, his hair will never be cut.” 1 Samuel 1:10‭-‬11‭

God sees everything we’re going through. He sees it and wants to help, but He cannot and will not help without an invitation. Prayer is our invitation to God. We’re giving Him consent to act on our behalf.

Too many times we minimize prayer because we want something to do. We want to get our hands dirty and we want to solve the problem. We don’t understand or value the importance of prayer. When we pray, we’re removing ourselves from the situation and allowing God to handle it.

We’re limited in our knowledge and abilities. God’s power, knowledge, and abilities are infinite. So, why not use His?

That sad saying of “all we can do is pray” needs to be changed. We need to be excited when a conflict shows up and shout, “We get to pray!” Get God involved in your situation through prayer.

The entire family got up early the next morning and went to worship the Lord once more. Then they returned home to Ramah. When Elkanah slept with Hannah, the Lord remembered her plea, and in due time she gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, for she said, “I asked the Lord for him.” 1 Samuel 1:19‭-‬20 NLT

Satan is the king of condemnation. He’ll put numerous thoughts in our minds that make us feel like we’re doing a bad job at being a Christian. He’ll even use scriptures to justify how we’re missing the mark.

Let’s look at how he can condemn us.
We read Mark 1:35 which says, Jesus got up early and went out to an isolated place to pray.
Satan to Us: You didn’t wake up early and you barely prayed.
Someone cuts us off in traffic and we call them stupid.
Satan to Us: That’s not very Christian like.
Negative thoughts towards our job continously enter our minds.
Satan to Us: That’s not very grateful. How is God going to bless you with a new job with a bad attitude like that?
You forgot to pray over your food.
Satan to Us: If you get sick it’s your own fault because you didn’t pray.

Overall, he makes us feel like everything we’re doing is wrong or could be better. That’s no way to live.

There is no condemnation for those in Christ. We may not have it all together, but Christ does. We are in Christ and through Him, we are made righteous (2 Corinthians 5:17; Romans 5:1). So, when God sees believers of Jesus as Lord, He sees us righteous in Christ. He doesn’t see the person who may have had a bad attitude or the person who hasn’t read their bible in a while. He’s not shaking His head at us in shame. He’s happy because we’re in Christ.

Don’t allow condemnation to linger in your life. Know and accept that we are and forever will be righteous through Christ.

Romans 8:1 So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.

People don’t speak when you speak to them. People don’t say thank you after you’ve held the door for them. People stop talking to you when you’ve helped them. These are the behaviors of some people that make us want to remove our kindness from the world. When the temptation comes, we must resist the urge to remove our kindness.

If we’re being kind in order to be appreciated, we’re doing it for the wrong reasons. Our kindness is a reflection of God. We should be kind because we are kind people and we have a kind Father. Whether someone appreciates it or not is irrelevant. We’re sowing kindness into the world. As we sow kindness, we’ll reap a harvest of kindness from someone and from God (Galatians 6:7; Ephesians 6:8).

We’re called to be lights in a dark world. Part of our light is kindness. So, smile at someone, help someone out, and be a blessing. Be kind because God is kind.

“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
Matthew 5:14‭-‬16 NLT

There are people who are more emotional than others. When pressures and unfavorable conditions come, they get overwhelmed and cry. There’s nothing wrong with a few tears, but crying is not going to change the circumstances. Crying is not going to cause God to become sympathetic and move on our behalf. The only thing God and the circumstances of our life responds to is faith.

Let’s say you have a health condition. Instead of crying about it, have faith in God’s word and tell that health condition what Jesus has done for your body. He was whipped so that we can be healed (1 Pet. 2:24). When a marriage is rocky, don’t have a pity party. Command, in faith, peace, joy, and forgiveness in that marriage using the power we have in our words (Proverbs 18:21). Whatever situation you’re facing, apply faith to it and expect it to change.

Crying doesn’t move God. He hears our cry, but He doesn’t respond to tears. He responds to our faith. Place your faith in what God said and I guarantee things will get better.

I am ignored as if I were dead, as if I were a broken pot. I have heard the many rumors about me, and I am surrounded by terror. My enemies conspire against me, plotting to take my life. But I am trusting you, O Lord, saying, “You are my God!”
Psalms 31:12‭-‬14 NLT

John 10:9 NLT Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures.

Jesus is the only way. This sounds limiting and it doesn’t fit in with this inclusive mindset of people today, but it’s the truth.

Of course, there are people who think that just being a good person will qualify them for salvation, but it does not. Our belief in Jesus being the Son of God who died on the cross for our sins is the only way to receive actual salvation (Romans 10:9).

Don’t be one of those people who simply can’t believe Jesus is the way to salvation or can’t believe He’s the ONLY way to salvation. He is. If we can truly get ahold of what He went through and sacrificed for us, we will have no doubt in telling the world that Jesus is the only way.

So, if you want to get saved, make it to heaven, and see the Father, believe and receive Jesus as Lord and Savior.

Some of us understand the importance of consulting God on major decisions like, buying a house, marrying a person, or taking a job, but we should consult Him in minor things too.

Some of the minor things we often overlook are…
What outfit should we wear
What time should we go grocery shopping
When we should go to bed
When to take a break from work
What lane should we be driving in
What should we order at the restaurant

Some people may say we shouldn’t bother God with trivial things or He doesn’t care about that. God will get involved with whatever we give Him access to.

When we remember to consult God on minor things, we increase our clarity to hear His voice and we could potentially avoid major complications. Getting to know His voice on minor things will make it easier to hear Him during major decisions. Asking God what we should order at a restaurant could avoid food poisoning.

Get God involved in everything.

So the Israelites examined their food, but they did not consult the Lord. -Joshua 9:14 NLT

Mark 4:24 Then he added, “Pay close attention to what you hear. The closer you listen, the more understanding you will be given—and you will receive even more.

God’s word is singlehandedly the most important thing ever. When we’re at church or listening online, it’s important to pay attention to what’s being said and minimize distractions.

Some distractions include, our phones, people watching, and sleeping. These distractions appeal to our flesh and they’re sent to distract us from hearing God’s word and any revelation we get through the Holy Spirit.

The message could be about love, but the Holy Spirit could be speaking to us about another subject. He could be giving us strategies to solve a problem at work or what we need to do to get rid of that pain in our back. If we’re distracted with other things, we won’t hear what’s important.

Let’s do our best to pay attention to God’s word and limit outside distractions.

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Scriptures of the Day

July 2022
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