Jun 15, 2022
Sometimes Christians become numb to the Bible. We've heard the verses so many times by different preachers in different ways. We can recite them, but we don't pay attention to what they really mean.
Jesus words in Matthew 16:17- 19 are one example.
And answering, Jesus said to him, Blessed are you, Simon, son of Jonah, for flesh and blood did not reveal it to you, but My Father in Heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My assembly [ekklēsia], and the gates of Hades will not prevail against her. And I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of Heaven. And whatever you bind on earth shall occur, having been bound in Heaven. And whatever you may loose on the earth shall be, having been loosed in Heaven. (LITV)
It is important to notice the image Jesus gives us. It is the Church standing outside the gates of hell, not hell standing outside the gates of the Church. The Church is not on the defense. It is on the offense. The gates exist as a means to protect hell from the Church.
The gates have been symbolized as the devices of evil spirits, or as death and darkness or even the persecutions against the Church. They have been a symbol of protected territory kept from the Church. It is a place where evil hopes to retreat safely.
But Jesus said these gates will not stand.
He has given us keys to bind and loose, to capture and set free. Whatever we bind is bound in the spiritual world in heaven and on earth. Jesus gives a hint of what we should bind in Matthew 12. While answering the priests' accusation of being an agent of satan, Jesus speaks of casting out demons and binding the strongman.
But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. Or else how can one enter into a strong man's house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house. (Matthew 12:28-29)
Again, Jesus is giving us an image of breaking into the enemy's holdings and binding. Jesus told Peter in Matthew 16 this is the work of the Church. Jesus has given us the keys of Heaven to bind evil and loose the Spirit of freedom, salvation and deliverance. He has already said, "Yes."
Jesus said plainly in Luke 10:19 the Church has the authority to trample over all the works of the enemy. "Behold, I give unto you power [exousia] to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power [dunamis] of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you."
The question Christians need to answer is how do we see ourselves?
Do we see ourselves as attacked and defending against evil forces that will only be defeated when Jesus returns?
That's part of the picture. We are in a battle. Satan will only leave the earth when God throws him into the pit.
But Jesus tells His Church the enemy is defeated and we are to be taking ground now.
Christians are standing at the gates of hell, armed with Jesus' blood and His words. You are either whining about problems, fully armed but defeated or swinging your sword in praise because you have the high ground.
What does the enemy have locked up inside his gates that belongs to you?
- Your dreams?
- Your healing?
- Your deliverance?
- Your prosperity in a world gone crazy?
Name it. Write it down and post it on your fridge. This is yours. God has given you His blessing to eradicate the devil's footprint from your life. Bind what you need bound and loose what you need loosed. Heaven is waiting for you to act...
Then take your stand and PRAISE.
Loud and long to shake those gates. Every time you look at the words posted on your fridge, PRAISE. Every time you think of it, PRAISE.
And only praise. No questioning. No looking back. No wondering. Because you are standing on God's word and the gates will not prevail.
If you would like to learn more about standing in faith, check out Understanding Faith So You Can Move Your Mountain here.
Meme image by Opollo Photography courtesy of Unsplash.
Interior blog image by Jeremy Perkins courtesy of Unsplash.
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