Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, (Luke 18:1)
You may be wondering how this verse of scripture ties in with the topic of this blog. As you will soon discover, the two are intricately linked. How many times have you heard someone (usually a Christian) say, “God is in control”? How many times have you heard someone say, “Why doesn’t God do something about the pain and suffering that is taking place in the world?” So, who is really in control of this world system? Let us go back to the Book of Beginnings to see if we can gain some insight.
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, OVER ALL THE EARTH and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” (Gen. 1:26, emphasis mine)
So, man was given dominion (control) over the earth by God. However, we see later in Genesis 3 that Adam and Eve allowed Satan to deceive them into disobeying God’s instruction. Consequently, man lost his dominion (control) and Satan became the god of this world.
In whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. (2 Cor. 4:4). (See also John 12:31 & 16:11)
Satan is also referred to as the prince of this world. Jesus said,
“Hereafter I will not talk much with you: for the prince of this world comes, and has nothing in me.” (John 14:30)
We find further support for this fact when Jesus was being tempted of Satan in the wilderness.
Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’ “ (Mt. 4:8-10)
This could only have been a temptation to Jesus if Satan in fact had possession of the kingdoms of the world.
Jesus’ death and resurrection was God’s strategy for wresting control of the world back from Satan. God had no legal authority in the earth so He had to send someone into the earth who could pay the ransom for the sin that had been committed by Adam and Eve.
I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death. (Rev. 1:18)
And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.” (Mt. 28:18)
Jesus is no longer in the earth. He has given believers power and authority to act in His name.
And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; (Mk. 16:17)
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.” (Lk. 10:19)
Believers of Jesus Christ have been given authority over Satan. However, He still has dominion in the earth over those who are not followers of Jesus Christ and have not been born again into the kingdom of God. This is why we see the pain and suffering. He still has power to occupy human vessels and cause them to do his bidding (Lk. 11:24-26) or to put thoughts into their minds upon which they act (2 Cor. 10:4-6). God cannot legally and justly move in and take away that authority from the devil because He has made man a free moral agent who can make choices. However, Satan has no authority over believers in Jesus Christ other than that which is allowed by God. God has given believers the mandate to take back territory from the enemy (Mt. 28:19-20).
“Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven.” (Mt. 18:18-19)
Have you ever wondered why there is such a struggle in the church to get believers to pray? Satan has purposely ramped up demonic opposition towards prayer because he knows that this is the weapon that has the greatest power to push back his forces of darkness in the earth. God’s hands are tied until believers activate the spiritual forces of heaven to act on our behalf. We are waiting on God but He is waiting on us. If Christians knew and began to exercise the power they have been given through agreement in prayer and truly believe that they will receive what they pray then the mountains of murder, corruption, injustice, sexual immorality, witchcraft and all forms of spiritual bondage would be removed.
So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.” (Mt. 17:20)
Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” (Mk. 11:24)
The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. (Jas. 5:16b)
The Lord said in Luke 19 that we are to occupy till He comes. Occupation is a military term. To occupy means to infiltrate and win ownership of territory through force. Occupy is not a passive term but an active, even aggressive term. The kingdom of heaven suffers violence and the violent take it by force (Mt. 11:12). Our nation and God are depending on the army of the Living God to override Satan’s authority in the earth!! It is time to do all that we have been told to do in 2 Chronicles 7:14. We have been given the authority and the power. We need to believe we have them and begin to exercise them in Jesus’ name!!