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KINGDOM  LIFESTYLE

In the battle before Agincourt 300 excellent English archers had their first two fingers of the right hand cut off by the French. At Agincourt the English bowmen lifted their two fingers to the French and the V-sign was born. Every believer has two fingers — authority and anointing so that we can cast out demons. The supremacy of the English over the French was the result of having their two fingers so they could use their bow and arrows to full effect. We must use our authority in the name of Jesus by the anointing of the Holy Spirit. Luke 11: 20 says, concerning our authority as the finger of God:

“but if I cast out demons with the finger of God;
surely the Kingdom of God as come upon you.”
Matthew 12: 28 substitutes “the Spirit of God” for the finger of God. I am not telling you to do V-signs to the enemy, but using the illustration to stir up a zeal within your spirit to go to war, and use God-given authority and anointing.

The Kingdom of God is Within you (Luke 17: 21). The sphere or habitat of where Jesus rules is within your spirit, that safe place of retreat which has been regenerated when you were born again. Notice that deliverance and Kingdom go together. All miracles Jesus did are in the Old Testament, except exorcism. Casting out demons are the distinctive mark in the New that the Kingdom has come. All pastors, all elders, all church planters, all missionaries, all evangelists should have the two fingers of authority and anointing to set the captives free.
 

The scope of deliverance

The beginning of Kingdom lifestyle is the breaking of the power of the enemy over our lives. To gain greater capacity for God, curses must be broken, strongholds pulled down, spiritual warfare against principalities and powers pursued, soul-ties broken, generational sins dealt with. The head of the home must overcome strife in relationships. The preacher must inspire others to wage warfare against the strong men of antichrist, jezebel and death followed by Hades. Every believer has the daily battle against strongholds, those power grips that swing the mind’s thinking toward the adversary’s agenda. All fears, anxieties, rejections, tempers, regrets, must be overcome for Kingdom lifestyle.

a) Strongholds

Read 2 Corinthians 10 3—6.

The stronghold does not easily let go of your mind. It grips because a reason in your spiritual history allows the enemy a place. Sin has a consequence. Play with sin and sin will win by placing a stronghold over the mind. The other grounds can be generational weaknesses or curses and victimization, intimidation or domination by another person. In praying for the removal of strongholds we need to handle the blood of Jesus as a separating force that cuts the sufferer off from all kinds of torment. For example when disease or sickness is to be healed in His glorious name you need to discern a tormenting fear of that disease in the mind. Fear and rejection always produce a level of torment. Tormentors are those who bring out information by torture. The enemy stronghold can cause us to say death words, a negative cycle of speech that gives further ground to the operation of evil spirits. This area brings faith teaching and deliverance as partnering truths to set the captive free. Many of God’s precious children are hindered from receiving precise instruction from the head of the church because strongholds have not been pulled down by spiritual weapons. Keep the stronghold, and His grip on your life will become weaker. How many believers grow in grace throughout their lives? How many after 20 or 30 years in the Kingdom fail to produce fruit?

Check these strongholds:
 
1. Saul envy, jealousy 1 Samuel 18:7—11
2. Job hopelessness Job 6: 2,11; 10: 15,18
3. Peter deception Galatians 2:11 — 21
Matthew 16: 22,23
4. Timothy intimidation 2 Timothy 1: 7
5. Elijah fear l Kings 19: 1—10
6. Hannah sorrow 1 Samuel 1: 15
7. Gehazi greed  2 Kings 5: 20—27
8. Nebuchadnezzar pride Daniel 4: 37
9. Cain  murder Genesis 4: 1 — 10 (Notice in verse 7 there was a demon crouching by the door-This was more sinister than a sin problem.)
10. David revenge 1 Samuel 25: 13

b) Curses

Curses always look for a reason to descend on us, and unconfessed sin and unguarded words provide the ground. Here are twelve reasons or causes for the curse to do the enemy’s work:
 
 

1.Laziness (especially a refusal to take spiritual warfare seriously)
2. Pride     
3. Flesh - Dependant    
4.Negative talk 
5.Soulish talk 
6.Evil eye 
7.Disrespect for parents 
8.Robbing God 
9.Immorality 
10.Theft 
11.False gods 
 
Judges 5: 23
Psalm 119: 21
Jeremiah 17: 5
Proverbs 18 21
James 3:15
Galatians 3: 1
Ephesians 6: 2,3
Malachi 3: 8 - 10
Proverbs 6: 32; Lev. 18: 22
Genesis 31: 25, 35:16: Zechariah 5: 1-4
Exodus 20: 1 - 5 (false gospel included: see Galatians 1:6—9)
12. Self - imposed curses  Isaiah 54: 17,18

How do I know a curse may be active? Deuteronomy 28 22—65 lists the serious indicators of mental or emotional breakdown, repeated or severe sickness, barrenness or miscarriage, accident — prone, financial problems, divorce etc. The power of a curse can separate even the Spirit — filled believer from the favour of God and the blessings that are listed in Deuteronomy 28:
1 — 14. Notice there is three times the Scripture devoted to the curses, because curses are far more common!

BLESSING comes when we pass from under the curse by deliverance and faith. Curses must be broken because the evil spirit attaches itself to them. Faith in Galatians 3: 13, 14 is also required. Curses of slander can be very successful, and divert the accused from the path of God. Jezebelic control must be cut away for divine favour to flow again. Here are some of the blessings that make rich and add no sorrow to you:
 
 

a) Favour 
b) More than enough 
c) Victory. God does not give up on you until he leads you in victory.
d) Healing.The word ‘oppressed’ is speaking of a torment spirit that impacts the disease in the body
Luke l: 28,30; lThess.2: 4
Phil.4:15—19; 3John 2
2 Corinthians 2: 14 
Acts 10: 38
e)  Promotion 
f) Positive divine optimism. Paul was up to his knees in excrement, in darkness in the Imperial prison, but hope still spoke in his spirit. 
Deut. 28: 13; Proverbs 18: 16
Phil 1: 12
Romans 8: 35—39
g) Joy 
h) Fruitfulness 
I) Love 
j) Obedience 
Psalm 30: 5; Jeremiah 31: 13
Hebrews 6: 7,8; John 15: 8
lJohn3: 1; Deut.23: 5
Deut.28: 1, 30:1—3; Psalm 126: 1—3;
Romans 12: 14; Luke 6: 28

How do we appropriate them? Simply, by walking in the Spirit and refusing to walk in the flesh. The revelation walk brings revolution Kingdom living. Why do God’s people love conferences? Because after a few meetings God’s concentrated power lifts away the curses. They will return if we fail to obey His Word.

The curse of fatherlessness needs to be addressed today. Even when you have experienced parents without the trauma of divorce, the lack of godly love can lead to many problems. A disconnectedness is common among post World War two children. The emotional scars of grief and pain bring a wounding in spirit where many cannot function properly. Loneliness, lack of approval, depression, produces a sense of exile, which for some ends in insanity. The fatherlessness has been exaggerated by a matriarchal rule of cruelty and control. In the last 40 years of the twentieth century this curse increased rapidly with the demasculizing of men and the masculizing of women. The church is desperate for men and women to break curses with the warrior anointing.
 

c)   Soul - ties

Godly soul — ties in friendship and family can become ungodly. The transference of depression or fear spreads sometimes in close relationship either at home or work. Any sexual relationship outside marriage will produce an ungodly soul — tie with a sense of emotional longing or mystic union.
Proverbs 6 32 says:

“Whoever commits adultery with a woman
Lacks understanding; he who does so destroys his own soul”
In other words you become partly the property of another, and part of your soul enters the other. God wants to keep sex in marriage, so intimacy and union can be enjoyed. We possess our souls in patience, bearing up in a heavy pressure situation. God looks for maturity in all marriage. Divorce is admitting you cannot share your real self with your mate at the expense of the old self.  The church was soul — tied in Acts 4: 32. Godly marriage is a godly soul — tie when God initiates it and there follows the gluing together of two spirits, two souls, and two bodies. Godly soul — ties and very precious but often rare. David and Jonathan were knit together in a love covenant. (1 Samuel 18:1).

However, what can start out godly often ends up confused because the enemy inroads have not been discerned. I remember two Christian ladies who became very close, but when one was embarking on a relationship with a man she felt could be her husband, her friend flew into a controlling rage of temper, a spirit of fear was released, and damage was done. The insidious relationship of ungodly soul — tie prevents God’s purpose. The Cross of Christ is central to the will of God in our big decisions and must cut the tenderest of ties, or the purpose will be thwarted. Jezebel’s use of flattery, sentimentality and control savages much church progress. The Living, active Word of God must divide soul from spirit, or we will experience the draining and paralyzing work of evil spirits attacking our desire to please God. Watch out for Jezebel in women and Nimrod in men, that spirit that would unlawfully possess what is not rightfully his. Kingdom lifestyle uses Psalm 118: 11,12 to cut away those demons that infiltrate ungodly soul — ties.

Up to now, I’ve highlighted the negative side to Kingdom lifestyle. The bad news forever precedes the good! Even before eternity we get one final rebellion from Satan after the thousand years of Christ reigning! The positive power of Kingdom life is to love as Jesus was loved by the Father. The love of God is deep commitment, true motive, and heart relationship. The question we need to ask is, “Can I share my real self to benefit another at my expense?” If you answer in the affirmative, the love of God IS IN YOU! This unselfish, sacrificial love reaches out; when God so loved the world; when Jesus hung on the Cross in the hardest labour imaginable, bearing away our sin; when millions of believers act with compassion. We are delivered from the power of darkness into the Kingdom of the Son of His love.
 

1. God calls the Christian to love cold bloodedly.

Agape love is much more than a feeling because it puts iron in the soul. There comes a season in a marriage when all the romance has been forgotten. This winter season means God wants you to love from your will, coldbloodedly. Are you a proactive or reactive person? The proactive make choices upon deeply held values — ‘I determine’, ‘I will’, ‘I choose to’, according to ethics. The reactive person empowers the circumstances to control their life, by saying, for example, ‘he made me mad’, ‘she ruined my life’. The proactive Christian says ‘he or she hurt me, but I choose to forgive from my heart.’ Loving is rejoicing in the truth and SUBMITTING our wills to the authority of the Word of God.

A flea looks to a dog or cat for life. Dependancy is vital for progression of life. A battery unilaterally gives life — our supercharger is the Holy Spirit. Yet countless Christian marriages and relationships are two fleas! Are you merely a puppet at the end of a string reacting to what others say or do? The problems we face are never out there for the proactive, but internal, i.e. our response to the choices of others and the circumstances. Strong godly love comes out of godly response to difficult circumstances. Read Romans 5: 3 — 5 and see the progress of the apostolic mind.
 

2. God calls the Christian to love compassionately.

Jesus was moved in His will with white — hot divine compassion. The product of hating sin and loving the sinner equals compassion. Tough love confronts sin, and brings the needed discipline of the Father. Avoid the sin issues and sentimentality invades with it’s soul — based counterfeit. Fire relates to compassion: we must be ignited in holy love. This possibility emerges out of the gripping love of Christ that makes us see that He died for all and all died in Him. These twin facts of Calvary; His unconditional love and our old man killed off in His death comes from the focus and heart of His compassion. He loved us enough to crucify that in us that was incapable of love, the sin — spirit we inherited from Adam. Compassion flows from Calvary so we grow in grace and godlikeness. Another Jesus cannot achieve it. The drop — out hippy Jesus of the 1960’s has no backbone of righteousness. The prosperous yuppy Jesus of the 1980’s has no heart of sacrificial compassion. Do we surrender to the hard sayings of Luke 14? 26 — 33? Only compassion can live in those verses.
 

3. God calls the Christian to love communicatively.

We communicate God’s love in many ways: —
       a) More than words 1 John 3: 18
Look at Dorcas in Acts 9. Her good deeds seemed to have qualified her for resurrection! Our love for one another is the essential mark of conversion.
       b) Allows freewill and is never controlling John 6: 67
He let them go if they wanted. Beware leaders who control your will — they are leading you into a cult.
       c) By giving quality time
The world does not know us by our going to meetings, by dancing, or doing carpet time, by glorious testimony or by tithing or preaching, but by our love for one another. That means giving quality time. Fellowship is rare even in a charismatic culture.        d) By touch
Never touch anyone without being granted permission first. However, when agree, God’s anointed love can flow through a hug, a handshake, the laying on of hands and a holy kiss.
       e) By commitment
Read 2 Corinthians 8: 1 — 5 and see that the double commitment of “they gave themselves to the Lord and then to us by the will of God” involves prayer agreement and a listening to His will.
       f) By believing in the person when no-one else does
Acts 9: 10 — 16 is a cameo of great fellowship between two believers because the Lord orchestrated it, beyond the caution of Ananias. If we fear man we cannot honour God.

4. God calls the Christian to receive Father’s love consistently

Distortions concerning love can halt any reception of the kind of love that always heals, refreshes and brings the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Some say:

(a) Love doesn’t last and cannot help me survive. 
 In some homes love has been a forbidden word.
(b) Love always produces pain.
(c) Poor relationships with our parents, especially, father.
(d) Programmed to conditional love.
(e) Love means giving up freedom and identity.
(1) I’m suspicious; what do they want out of me?
(g) Love leads to guilt, because I’ve failed so many times.
(h) Love dominates the real you and suppresses your personality.
(i) Is love more than sex or receiving gifts?
(j) I’m frightened of any wrong motives.


Here are many strongholds and imaginations or reasonings that must be demolished by praise, the Word of God, the blood of the Lamb, and the name of Jesus Christ. We must come to a place of acknowledging our need to be loved by Father, and to see that intimacy with Him will help us grow as real people. The fear of receiving his eternal, warm, personal love must be bound in Jesus name! The spirits of bondage must be broken. (See Romans 8: 15). Then we can ask the Holy Spirit to love us with the Father’s undying love. We knew a tiny speck of His love at the new birth, and perhaps again when He baptized us in the Holy Spirit. We need to bask in Father’s love consistently to be used in a loveless culture that is looking for the real thing. To be containers of agape love we find we must maintain a walk of being delivered. Kingdom lifestyle is where deliverance and love meet.
 

STYLES OF MINISTRY

In the current emphasis on the presence of God and the hunger for glory, many of God’s famishing children are seeing change and liberty. God can sweep through meetings with a tangible sense of His holy presence. The Kingdom of God has COME UPON YOU. There is still, however, the need for counseling and deliverance ministry privately. Why? The ground that evil spirits work on; the uncrucified flesh must be recognized and put to death. Today we need to be open to different styles of ministry. Often believers will be advocates of one type of emphasis
— Toronto, or Word of faith or Shepherding or Inner Wholeness or Ellel Ministries. Each have their place in the economy of God. Each have areas of extreme or counterfeit teaching. How leaders need to humble themselves and learn from one another. Some leaders in these movements are godly and balanced. Others are not. The job of the congregation is to weigh the prophetic word and discern the spirit behind what is being said. Please pray for local church leaderships — they are often confused with the recovery of truth from heresy that has entered the body of Christ since the 1960’s.

Each individual member of the body has the responsibility to be led of the Spirit into the green pastures. Cry out for discernment. Desire kingdom lifestyle so the indwelling Christ can manifest Himself through you, whatever the situation. After all, success is simply BEING for JESUS. Without personal deliverance ministry the LOVE of GOD cannot flow to others.

The policy of prevention

An unusual but increasingly common policy of prevention to Kingdom lifestyle is the messenger from Satan. For Paul it was a legalist intent on spoiling the gospel of grace. He buffeted Paul like a slap on the face, or an uppercut to the stomach. This thorn in the flesh was a crucifying element given by God. Paul pleaded three times that ‘he’ might depart, but God answered that ‘My grace is sufficient, because My strength is made perfect in weakness.’ To know our frailty is to be the vessel that can contain the glory that follows grace. Too often the gospel is laced with legalism. Our religious mind prevents true Kingdom lifestyle. Grace becomes cheap when we refuse to link the grace of God with obedience. Grace is not the license to do what I want to do, but the LIBERTY TO DO what HE TELLS ME TO DO. The enemy seeks to devour grace and glory by certain people who enter our lives to do damage. For Samson it was the lack of a holy valuation in submitting to the sensual Delilah. For Abel it was Cain. For David a jealous King Saul! All through the Bible there are messengers of Satan, people directly inspired by the evil one.

Recently a man told me of how his wife changed dramatically in character by joining a satanic ring. He had escapes from death, but God used it all to redeem his soul. He lost his business, family, home, and car in a sequence of terrifying supernatural evil. His wife had become the messenger of Satan. In the devastating destruction is there instruction from the Word of God that can heal and redeem? Can Kingdom lifestyle be a reality in our brokenness? One passage I’ve used hundreds of times to provide a solid base to such distressed lives in 2 Corinthians 1: 3 — 6. Read it prayerfully and see this liberating secret: OUR EXPERIENCES are NOT primarily FOR OURSELVES. 99% of people just don’t know this great truth, but God is able to touch us where we are afflicted, and give us comfort that, at a later date, we can give to the distressed. Kingdom lifestyle can overcome the policy of prevention, that has power to continue in our lives long after we are born again. Authority must be exercised and anointing of the Holy Spirit experienced so that the rulership of the Lord Jesus can emanate through His Sons and daughters. When authority and anointing are released in the agape love of God, we know the Kingdom of God has come. An army of prayer warriors are urgently needed to intercede for the blessing of this supernatural reality..
 
 

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