The Breaking of Bondages!


     The person who continues with burdens that are unshared, and bruises that are unhealed, will not be able to cope with their bondages; for they will not believe that they can be broken. Satan will have them convinced there is no way out, and no deliverance. Only the truth of the gospel, renewing their mind, can hope to change that lie. Burdens being shared, and bruises being healed, are basic to bondages being broken. Our salvation and deliverance is progressive; we grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and we take the land “little by little,” just as the Israelites took their land, little by little, city by city; battle by battle; Exodus 23:29-30 I will not drive them out from before thee in one year; lest the land become desolate, and the beast of the field multiply against thee. By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land.” Untill God causes us to fully possess land and inherit it by dispossessing all the powers of hell and their influence in our lives, and drive them out of our hearts.  Deuteronomy 7:22-24"And the LORD thy God will put out those nations before thee by little and little: thou mayest not consume them at once, lest the beasts of the field increase upon thee.[You can only fight so many battles at one time. We don’t fight against every weakness in our life, every sin habit at one time. We take one at a time. We face pride, and then we face covetousness, then anger; but we can’t fight every evil influence Satan has had in our lives at one time. They didn’t take on every “Ite” in the land of Canaan at one time, but one at a time.]But the LORD thy God shall deliver them unto thee, and shall a destroy them with mighty destruction, until they be destroyed.[This is the key. We have to keep on fighting the good fight of faith until we possess and inherit the land.]And he shall deliver their kings into thine hand, and thou shalt destroy their name from under heaven: there shall no man be able to stand before thee, until thou have destroyed them."

     We walk with the Lord progressively, going from victory to victory. 1 Corinthians 15:57 "But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."  2 Corinthians 2:14"Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place." We just begin our walk with the Lord when we come to Him initially in salvation. That is just the beginning. You haven’t arrived at the promise land; your ticket to heaven isn’t punched. After we come to the Lord,  there is much cleansing, sanctification and deliverance needed in the lives of most new believers. We begin as “babes” in Christ, feeding on the “milk of the Word” and grow in maturity until we can eat “strong meat.” We grow in relationship to our salvation and in deliverance from the sinful influences in our lives. 1 Peter 2:2"As newborn babes, desire [long for] the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:" Hebrews 5:13-14 "For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."

     Likewise, deliverance is not the first thing we learn about when we come to Christ. We may learn about deliverance from demon possession in coming to Christ and being saved and set free; but not about the inner bondages from our past that continue to effect our present life, decisions, and responses to circumstances. Yet at Calvary Jesus made atonement for the entire man, that we might we made completely whole, in body (physical healing), soul (emotional and mental healing of memories) and spirit (spiritual healing). John 6:32, 36"Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.  .  .  But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not."Jesus came to set the captives free! Luke 4:18 "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord.Here Paul writes about those who so easily backslide. 2 Timothy 2:26 "And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will."It should not be that God’s people walk in such a place that Satan can just grab and pull you down any time he chooses, as if he has a string of control attached to your life. He can only do that when there is something in your life that he can attach the string too. Jesus said in John 14:30; “the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me.”

There was nothing in Jesus life that he could grab hold of to drag Him down and cause Him to sin. What is there in your heart that belongs to Satan, that comes from him.

     Bondages are compulsory servitude. You don’t have any choice. Satan is the other Master who holds men in slavery. Jesus sets us free, and we serve him willingly, because we freely choose and desire to do so, not of compulsion. No one serves the Lord Jesus by compulsion, but everyone serves Satan by compulsion. 2 Peter 2:19 says “for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. God doesn’t hold us as slaves and captives, as Satan does. And Jesus said “no man can serve two masters.” God doesn’t want those who come to him to remain in bondage and involuntary servitude to the powers of hell that they once gave themselves too. But most professing Christians don’t know this, [that’s the problem] and most churches don’t practice and teach deliverance of any kind [that’s the real problem].

     Every Christian begins this life with areas where he is bound. Confessing your sins does not set you free from the bondages in your life. It can be a bondage to “the sin that doth so easily beset you” (Hebrews 12:1) or it can be of an obvious bondage to nicotine or alcohol or drugs (legal or illegal), or a deep emotional bondage and inner stronghold that Satan has built. Though in themselves they may seem insignificant to the totality of our lives, each area of our lives in which we are bound and not free, acts as a point of attack for the enemy; a launching ground where we are vulnerable, threatened and accessed by the powers of hell. If we have only a couple of holes in our spiritual armour, they are holes just the same and make us vulnerable, for Satan can get to us through those holes. When you come to Jesus Christ and make Him Lord and confess your sins and ask Him to come into your heart, you receive some immediate deliverance’s and freedom but you do not know or understand all that God has done in you. But if you don’t come to a knowledge of the truth that will keep you free, Satan will come, and lie to you and entrap you and put you right back into a bondage that Jesus already set you free. If the enemy has control of even one little part of our lives, he will use that to attack us and oppress us. From there he will attempt to gain back lost ground in the one that was saved, by attempting to “branch out” into other areas of their lives, piece by piece.

     Our lives are like pieces of a puzzle. Many pieces make up the whole. God is working in our lives bit by bit, piece by piece, taking out of you that which is not of Him, and replacing it with that which is of His nature and character. And while God is on one side working to conform us to the image of Christ, by cleansing and sanctifying our lives, Satan is on the other side attempting to gain back the ground he has lost, by deception. For many, because of ignorance of the Word of God and lack of training, Satan will deceive them and take them back into a greater bondage than they were in before, by getting them to backslide. Part of this is because of the failure of those in the ministry to do their job in training and watching over their sheep to keep Satan from deceiving them. Satan gained his control and power in our lives bit by bit, not all at once. Little by little as we continued to break God’s laws, one by one, we go deeper and deeper into Satan’s grasp. Those who are in a deep grasp and bondage of Satan didn’t get there in a month or even a year, but gradually, little by little. And that is the way in which we are delivered.

     Ecclesiastes 10:8"He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him." Sin adds to sin, progressively, and deliverance is progressive also. It involves removing these areas where Satan has access to us, where we are vulnerable to his attacks and oppression, one by one, until we are completely and totally free from all bondages and hindrances to our Christian life and waLuke  Let us not be content where we are and stop short, as the Israelites did in taking their land; but let us go on to complete victory and possess our vessels for Christ, that we can be “vessels of honor.”

     Here are some scriptures prophesied of Christ by Isaiah, of what He would do when He came: Isaiah 42:7 "To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house."  Isaiah 54:14 "In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee." Isaiah 58:6 "Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?"  Isaiah 61:1 "The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;" Jesus fulfilled all these and every other prophesy concerning “the Christ” or Messiah. The Scripture says that when He sets us free, we would be “Free indeed,” completely and absolutely, not partially. It’s maximum freedom and deliverance that He offers, not minimGalatians  Deliverance and freedom and healing for every area of our lives: for the total person.

     “The cause of all bondage is sin.” What is sin? It is the breaking of God’s laws. 1 John 5:17a "All unrighteousness is sin."  1 John 3:4 "Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law." Romans 14:23b "for whatsoever is not of faith is sin." James 4:17 "Therefore [conclusion] to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin." Bondage does not occur because we break God’s laws; but because His laws break us! Those who have broken God’s commandments have not in any way hurt or damaged the commandments; but they are the ones who are hurt and damaged by breaking God’s laws. Breaking God’s laws are like batting your head against a wall. The wall will survive, but your head won’t!

     We think we can get by with sin because of the deceitfulness of our hearts. Jeremiah 17:9 "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"  Mark 7:21-23 "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man."  They don’t come from outside, but from inside your heart. When you think and meditate on them, they will defile you. It’s our fallen Adamic nature that we were born with that causes us to be predisposed to sin. Ecclesiastes 10:2 "A wise man's heart is at his right hand; but a fool's heart at his left."  A wise man’s heart will direct him toward the right, to that which is right and a foolish man’s heart will direct him to the left, to that which is wrong. You will follow your heart. It will either lead you to do what is right in the sight of God or evil. Those who are not “Born again” have a heart that will lead them to the left, to sin. The right hand is always the hand of blessing, the left hand is the hand of cursing. God upholds us with the “right hand of His righteousness” (Isaiah 41:10).  We are not sinners because we sin, we sin because we are sinners. It is the nature and character of the unconverted to sin. It is natural for them to sin. You don’t have to try to be a sinner or to sin. Ephesians 2:2-3 "Wherein in time past [before coming to Christ]  ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air [Lucifer], the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: [this is the spirit of anti-Christ that has been in the world since then] Among whom also we all had our conversation [lifestyle] in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind [in imagining wicked things]; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others." We do not have to teach our children to do what is wrong and to sin. Rather we have to train them to do what is right. Proverbs 22:6 "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:15 "Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him." Proverbs 29:15 "The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame." They are on the street as hoodlums and gangsters because they have no discipline or rod of correction. We have to teach children not to sin, or they will naturally do what is sinful. But “Not sinning” cannot be learned. It requires a new heart and a new spirit, a new nature, to stop naturally sinning. That is received at the “new birth” when we receive Jesus into our lives as our personal “Lord and Savior.” Ezekiel 36:26-27 "A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. [You cannot change your own heart or do this for yourself] And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them."[God has to do this. He has to strengthen us and enable us to walk uprightly].  1 John 1:10 "If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us." The way to a sinless life is Jesus. The reality of a sinless life is Jesus. 1 John 3:8-9"He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. [Not establish the works of the devil, though many live as if they believe it is that way]. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin [does not habitually commit the same sin repeatedly]; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God."It means he is able  to not sin because of the Spirit and Word of God that is in him.

     Most who are in bondage can tell you how they came into bondage, when it happened, and the sin which gave Satan an open door into their lives. Many times adults will relate their bondages to a sin they committed in their youth. With it there is an inner hidden guilt and condemnation because of it. Psalm 25:7 "Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions: according to thy mercy remember thou me for thy goodness' sake, O LORD."  Job 13:26 "For thou writest bitter things against me, and makest me to possess the iniquities of my youth."  1 Kings 17:18 "And she said unto Elijah, What have I to do with thee, O thou man of God? art thou come unto me to call my sin to remembrance, and to slay my son?" Each of these were concerned with sins of their youth. Such sins can predispose one to certain habits and attitudes, which the enemy uses to get at them, to attack them in their minds, and even to blackmail them.

     Another sin which brings bondage is that which is passed down from generation to generation: a “cultural” sin. Many pass on to their children the practice of idolatry, voodoo, witchcraft, and other such sins. Exodus 20:5-6 "Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments."  Deuteronomy 7:9 "Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations;" Some will say, “My grandparents were such, my parents were such, I was born such, and I’ll die such.” They see it as inevitable for them to follow in the path and footsteps of their parents, but that’s a lie of the Devil! You don’t have to be bound to that which your parents were in bondage to. This passage is often misquoted and misinterpreted to say that the sins of the fathers shall be visited on the children, for no less than three or four generations. It says “... until the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;”. It is all one sentence; then in contrast the sentence continues after the semicolon: “and showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.” If you turn to the Lord, and love Him, then the sins of your parents who “hated” Him will not be visited upon you! It is only if you continue in their sin and hatred of the Lord. It’s only until one breaks that pattern and turns from that sin, and gives themselves to the Lord, then that curse is broken. Though there may have been a particular sin and resulting bondage in a family for many generations (such as witchcraft or alcoholism), in Christ, the one who believes is set free! That is the Word of God. Period! You don’t have to be a witch because your mother and grandmother were, and you don’t have to be under the power of their witchcraft just because they spoke a curse over you or dedicated you to the devil, or even took some of your blood and drank it in a Satanic rituGalatians  It does not matter, men are only men, and devils are only devils. There is only one God, and they are not Him. God doesn’t lie, Satan lies.

     Ezekiel 18:20-22"The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: [we need the balance of the whole Word of God. There are always those who go to the extremes, to the right or the left, but the Biblical truth is usually in-between the extremes of man.] the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. All his transgressions that he hath committed [or his parents], they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live."Do you believe God’s Word. Do you believe it is possible to change a pattern within a family? Jesus sets the captive free of generational sins, when they turn to Him and confess their sins and ask for forgiveness and deliverance. I know one who was a drunkard who had a lineage of alcoholism for several generations back, but when he turned to Christ, the bondage was broken, and the alcohol had no more power over him or his children, and he was called into the ministry to preach the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. The bondage is broken, and is no longer passed down to the next generation, but instead the blessings of God are passed down. 1 Kings 2:4 "That the LORD may continue his word which he spake concerning me, saying, If thy children take heed to their way, to walk before me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul, there shall not fail thee (said he) a man on the throne of Israel."[This was God’s promise to David.] 1 Kings 11:32 "(But he shall have one tribe for my servant David's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake, the city which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel:)"  [This is speaking of Rehoboam, Solomon’s son. Because of Solomon’s sin, the kingdom was divided and taken from his son, except for this one tribe. In verse 31 it said “for thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, Behold I will rent the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon and will ten tribes to thee.” Ten tribes were given to Jeroboam, and only one to Rehoboam; and that only to honor David.] 2 Kings 19:34 "For I will defend this city, to save it, for mine own sake, and for my servant David's sake."

     When one turns to Christ, not only is he or she set free personally, but the door of salvation is opened towards that family. Through prayer and a constant witness, it is possible to see other family members saved, particularly those of their immediate family (spouse and children). An example is Acts 16:31-34 "And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway. And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house." Salvation of the jailer opened the door of salvation for his household. Timothy was another example and Paul linked his faith to that of his grandmother Lois and his mother Eunice (2 Timothy 1:5 "When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also."  2 Timothy 3:15 "And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus."). Satan hates families, and does everything he can to destroy them. He is responsible for the generational sins of families that hate God. And it is true that where Jesus doesn’t come into ones life and stop that cultural or generational sin, it will be passed down through the family line. But God is able to break generational ties and sins and set you free from the past sins of your parents.

     This inheritance of sin is not merely a matter of influence or example, but often of demonic activity. This is especially true where witchcraft  or occultism of any form is practiced. These things allow Satan to get a stronghold in the family. But remember, even cultural sin is not involuntary. All sin involves complicity. Psalm 106:6 "We have sinned with our fathers, we have committed iniquity, we have done wickedly."  We voluntarily committed the same sins, we willingly followed them in sinning. Maybe your grandmother did teach you witchcraft, but you choose to practice it. Ezekiel 18:14 "Now, lo, if he beget a son, that seeth all his father's sins which he hath done, and considereth, and doeth not such like," The one who considers and doesn’t follow the sins of his father, but does that which is right (as described in verses 15 thru 17), God concludes: “he shall not die for the iniquity of his father; he shall surely live.” Again scripture interprets scripture.

     We have seen from scripture and know that : “Sin is the cause of bondage.” Sin pays wages to the one who commits them (Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death [you worked for it, you deserve it and have it coming.]; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."). Hosea 8:7 "For they have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind:."That is no different than “whatsoever a man sows that shall he also reap.” Anyone knows that if you plant a garden, the seeds you sow always multiply and reproduce more than what was sown. A wind multiplied becomes a whirlwind.  2 Corinthians 9:6 "But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully." If you sow good things, you reap good things; if you sow evil things, you will read the reward thereof, evil things. The more you sow, good or evil, the more of the same you will reap, good or evil. 2 Corinthians 5:10 "For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad." We will reap in different amounts, in different seasons, and in increments of sizes, but we will reap according to what we have sown! Sometimes it is delayed, but it will surely come. Sin has its consequences and The consequences of sin will be paid. Num.32:23 "But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out." All sin must be confessed and forsaken and cleansed away by the power of the blood of Jesus before the reaping will cease, and even then; the Lord allows some to reap after salvation the fruit of their sin before salvation. For instance, if a young woman got pregnant without being married before coming to Christ, she will still be pregnant, and she will still have that baby, even though she is saved and her sin forgiven. If you murdered someone and are sentenced to die, coming to Christ will not necessarily stop your execution date.  But at least all the eternal spiritual affects and punishment for your sin will be blotted out and you will not end up spending eternity in hell. David confessed and was forgiven for his sin, but he still reaped the wages of his sin; just not as bad as if he had not repented. Why will God allow you to still reap after confessing your sin? 1 Corinthians 11:32 "But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world." God will erase some and at times all of the payment for our past sins, when we bring them to the Cross for cleansing; but; “Sin has a ‘ripple’ effect” like a rock thrown into the water. Sometimes the effects take awhile to stop. Also, Sin has a ricochet action or effect; and the effects of it bounce back upon the one who has sinned, as a ball bounces off a wall and returns to the one who threw it. The effects of sin will return to the one who sins. The only possible way to stop these effects of sin, is to confess and forsake our sin. Psalm 5:10 "Destroy thou them, O God; let them fall by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions; for they have rebelled against thee." Psalm 7:15-16 "He made a pit, and digged it, and is fallen into the ditch which he made. His mischief shall return upon his own head, and his violent dealing shall come down upon his own pate." Proverbs 5:22-23 "His own iniquities shall take the wicked himself, and he shall be holden with the cords of his sins. He shall die without instruction; and in the greatness of his folly he shall go astray." Proverbs 26:27 "Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him." It’s as if he rolled it up a hill and went back down. Proverbs 28:10 "Whoso causeth the righteous to go astray in an evil way, he shall fall himself into his own pit: but the upright shall have good things in possession."

     We need to cover more deeply the area of generational sin where their is demonic activity and strongholds caused by witchcraft or occultic involvement, resulting in satanic bondage. “Satan does not play games!” He is dead serious about destroying the souls of men! The occultic practice of witchcraft is his area of specialty. To many “Christians” some of these occultic and idolatrous practices are viewed as just “harmless” activities. Examples are palm readers, tea leaf readers, tarot card readers, playing with a ouiji board, reading the daily horoscope in the newspaper, or going to a fortune teller at a carnival, as well as many others. Little children play with a ouiji board at slumber parties, and the responsible adults see no harm, as long as everyone understands it’s only a game, and just for fun. Occultic television programs are viewed in Christian homes by children, especially cartoons, and considered “just make believe” and as harmless as mother goose rhymes. But nothing of the occult is “harmless.” Nothing is “just a game” with the Devil. All these things are designed to give Satan and his hordes access into the lives of those who dabble in them, and to bring oppression, obsession, and even demonic possession. Satan takes advantage of every opportunity to get an opening into the lives of people, and will torment little children with nightmares and fears which are directly related to the things they have seen or done in their own homes. Satan is very insidious, and a master deceiver. He makes things seem or look harmless, but they are to entrap and enslave. He lies in wait like a lion preparing to pounce upon an unsuspecting victim. If he can gain an entry into one area of our lives, then he will use that ground as a launching pad to gain further ground. Like a helicopter coming down upon a landing pad, Satan will drop down onto the ground within a heart, which he already controls. From there he will fan out into that life, bringing in one evil spirit after another, bringing that person into greater and greater bondage. Satan is a liar and pretender (John 8:44 "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it."). He will pretend to withdraw, and play dead like a possum, without relinquishing his access to our lives, until we take a bold stand by faith in the victory Christ won for us at Calvary. Every contact with any form of witchcraft must be repented of, renounced, and forsaken, with prayer specifically for deliverance. Here are some scriptural warnings about the occultic: Exodus 22:18 "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live." Leviticus 19:26 "Ye shall not eat any thing with the blood: neither shall ye use enchantment, nor observe times." 31 "Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God." Leviticus 20:6 "And the soul that turneth after such as have familiar spirits, and after wizards, to go a whoring after them, I will even set my face against that soul, and will cut him off from among his people."  Deuteronomy 18:10-18 "There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee. Thou shalt be perfect with the LORD thy God. For these nations, which thou shalt possess, hearkened unto observers of times, and unto diviners: but as for thee, the LORD thy God hath not suffered thee so to do. The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken; [This is a prophesy of Christ] According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not. And the LORD said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken. I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.” Deuteronomy 4:19 "And lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the host of heaven, shouldest be driven to worship them, and serve them, which the LORD thy God hath divided unto all nations under the whole heaven." Zechariah 10:2 "For the idols have spoken vanity, and the diviners have seen a lie, and have told false dreams; they comfort in vain: therefore they went their way as a flock, they were troubled, because there was no shepherd." There is no one to lead them in truth and show them the way of God.

     In the book of Acts there are four recorded encounters with the occult. One was Simon the magician who tried to buy the power of God with money; Acts 8:9-24 "But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one: To whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, This man is the great power of God. And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries. But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done. Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost. And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost. But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity. Then answered Simon, and said, Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me." The second was the magician Elymas who opposed the preaching of the gospel and was struck blind; Acts 13:8-13 "But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith. Then Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him, And said, O full of all subtlety and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord? And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand. Then the deputy, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord. Now when Paul and his company loosed from Paphos, they came to Perga in Pamphylia: and John departing from them returned to Jerusalem." There was a little slave girl who had a spirit of divination that brought money to her owners; which when Paul got wearied with hearing her, rebuked the spirit. Acts 16:16-18 "And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which show unto us the way of salvation. (Satan will sometimes tell the truth, but even then it is deceptive. Satan comes as an angel of light, masquerading as light and truth.) And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour." Lastly, some Jewish exorcists attempted to imitate the deliverance ministry of Paul and were routed by the demonic powers they came against; Acts 19:12-19 "So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them. Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth. And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so. And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. (Think of it, one demon did this to 7 grown men.) And this was known to all the Jews and Greeks also dwelling at Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. And many that believed came, and confessed, and showed their deeds. Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver."That’s a lot of occultic books. Even today that’s a lot of money.

     Behind the gross evils of our day, there are demon spirits and principalities, assigned to destroy people. The drug scene, as well as that of abortion, homosexuality and lesbianism, pornography, all forms of witchcraft, fraud and all forms of wickedness are examples of the corruption that Satan has put upon our land. And through those sins he has gained an entrance and controls part or all of their lives. Our religious and political leaders have opened the door to Satan and his hordes and given him access into their lives by practicing privately the evils that they denounce publicly. We have a bunch of two-faced lying hypocritical leaders. What they say and what they do are two different things. But the Lord alone is God and He has all might, power and dominion. Jesus is King of kings, and Lord of lords, and has all power in heaven and earth and under the earth, and has given the power to his people to set men free from the power of the Devil. God is saying today as long ago, “Let my people go!” Remember Lazarus, whom Jesus raised from the dead? He told those with him, “roll the stone away;: then after he cried for Lazarus to come forth, he told them; “loose him and let him go.” That is our responsibility. Jesus raised them from the dead, spiritually; and we unwrap them from their bondages and let them go free. Most only see in this story that Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, but fail to see the part that He gave His disciples to do. Matthew 28:18 "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth." Revelation  19:16 "And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS."  1 John 3:8 "He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil."  Luke 10:19-20 "Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven." Some try to stop with verse 19 and ignore and deny the fact that Jesus gave them power to cast out devils. They say that’s not important for us today. But it is. There is more demonic activity and possession today than then.  Mark 16:17 "And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;"  It doesn’t say apostles, prophets, and preacher who believe, but those that believe. Do you believe? It also doesn’t say this is only for and while my apostles are alive that I appointed while I walked on the earth, and then it will pass away with them. Those who say such, simply are unbelievers who claim to believe. Unbelieving, disbelieving, believers. They change the Word of God to fit their doctrines and lack of power of God. But God’s Word is God’s Word, and you can’t change it by anything you say. If you don’t believe it, then it just doesn’t apply to you. It only applies to believers. Those who say they believe and reject this are calling God a liar, and are hypocrites and false preachers. Anyone who says God’s Word has changed, God has changed, or something Jesus spoke then doesn’t apply today, is a liar and false prophet. Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). The scripture says  “For I am the LORD, I change not;”  (MGalatians 3:6). Jesus quoted from Ps.119:89 For ever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven.”  John 11:44 "And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go."

     There are two other bondages which must be exposed and explored. The first is profanity or cursing. Only God knows how many curses are in the lives of people who have had vile, profane tongues. The person who curses, is putting a curse upon himself. Psalm 109:17-19 "As he loved cursing, so let it come unto him: as he delighted not in blessing, so let it be far from him. [If you bless others you will be blessed and if you curse others you will be cursed. Whatsoever a man sows that shall he also reap.] As he clothed himself with cursing like as with his garment, so let it come into his bowels like water, and like oil into his bones. Let it be unto him as the garment which covereth him, and for a girdle wherewith he is girded continually."Do you believe it? This is not the word of man. Mark 14:71 "But he began to curse and to swear, saying, I know not this man of whom ye speak." He denied knowing Christ. Peter was not only bruised by his own sin, but was put under a bondage by the sin of cursing. The word translated “curse” in this verse from the Greek means “to bind under a curse, or bind with an oath,” from a root word meaning “to declare or vow under penalty of execration” which means penalty of a curse.  The one who curses another will suffer the ricochet effect of the curse which will come back upon himself. The wages of sin is death, and the man who curses will reap the harvest of his curse. Many would say it’s just a bad habit and they don’t really mean what they say. However, that doesn’t change the fact that it opens the door for Satan to place that person under a curse. All those who have cursed, especially using the Lord’s name in vain, need to confess, forsake, and renounce all profanity, and ask for deliverance from the demon spirits to whom they gave access by their cursing.

      The final cause of bondage we will deal with is caused by “soul ties,” emotional ties with someone from our past. This subject of being tied to people in our past was touched upon in the message on bruises. Now we need to view it from the perspective of one whom is bound in his thought life to another with whom he once was intimate. This may or may not involve a moral issue. It can relate to other types of relationships. Scriptures warn us against inordinate affection. Colossians 3:5-6"Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:  For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience:" “Inordinate affection” is an inappropriate and excessive affection for someone, beyond the bounds of decency and good taste. Such relationships can result in deep bondages which can linger for years even after the relationship has ended. The person who is in bondage to another will suffer fantasies and guilt and other troubling emotions. We must beware of people who possess people. They do not have control of their emotions and thoughts, for they are controlled by another. The other person to which this attachment has been made can be far removed or even dead. It doesn’t matter. Satan is a blackmailer, and will bring up old things of our past, and replay them as a tape, to keep control in our thought lives. He will do this even to a believer. Deliverance involves specific prayer, renouncing all ties, disposing of all documentation and mementos, and forsaking and resisting all evil thoughts. If someone from the past or even in your present life, comes unbidden into your mind, especially at inappropriate times, that someone has too much control of your life. And it may not be that he even desired or wanted this to be so. He may not even know about what is going on within you. That has nothing to do with it. Right relationships in your life today can be hindered by old relationships yesterday or inappropriate relationships today. A complete spiritual, mental, emotional, and psychological house cleansing is necessary, before the Holy Spirit can come into that life in His fulness. Our Lord and Savior, who knows us so much better than we know ourselves, can release us from our bondages, heal and restore us, and establish new and healthy thought patterns based upon His Word. Our minds must be renewed by the Word of God. Old “launching pads” of the enemy in our lives must be removed and all mental faculties given over to the Lordship of Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 "For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, [that’s strongholds in the mind] and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;" Our thought life must be brought to the Lordship of Jesus Christ that He can be Lord over our thoughts! Romans 12:1-2 "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service [many think it’s unreasonable, but it is not. Those who think so are letting the Devil deceive them]. And be not conformed to this world: [Don’t be made to look like them, to be after their image or pattern of life that you act or walk like them] but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, [in other words, we are to be so changed in nature, so as to be made fit for a totally new purpose in life] that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."  Ephesians 4:23 "And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;"Many have an evil spirit tormenting and possessing their minds. 1 Corinthians 2:16 "For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ." This is what the mature believer is supposed to come to. Having your mind renewed by the Word of God, that you will respond to the circumstances in your life by the Word and do what Jesus would do and wants you to do. Ephesians 6:17 "And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:" The helmet is the Word of God that protects our mind. This is a most important part of the armor of God we are commanded to put on. It is for the protection of our minds. We need to wear it at all times. 1 Thessalonians 5:8 "But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation."  Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."Not the things which are the opposite of these, that which is dishonest, unjust, impure, unlovely, of evil report, not virtuous, and not praiseworthy. That’s what gossip and slander is.

     Having considered some of the causes of bondages, we will now consider the basis of Scriptural deliverance; which is the redemptive work of Jesus Christ, the finished works of Calvary. Genesis 3:15 "And I will put enmity between thee [Satan] and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." That tells us that Jesus would put His heel on the head of Satan. This depicts the ultimate victory of Calvary. Galatians 4:4 "But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law," Only Jesus can be the “seed of the woman” for only he was born of a virgin without a natural father. Jesus was the meeting of divinity and humanity; fully God and fully man; called the Son of God, and the Son of Man. He came as the second Adam, without original sin that had been passed down to all men since Adam sinned. And Jesus became our substitute and took our place on Calvary to redeem us. He paid the price for our sins, “in full” so we can be set free. Romans 6:14 says “Sin shall not have dominion over you.” It is not to be our master any longer. Romans 5:14-15 "Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many." 17-19 "For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous."  Romans 3:25 "Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;" 1 John 2:2 "And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world." We have to tell the people of the world that their sins are forgiven, because they don’t know it. 1 John 4:10 "Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins."  He did this for us when we were sinners and didn’t love Him either. We sing a chorus so often that tells it all: “He paid a debt He did not owe; I owed a debt I could not pay, I needed someone to wash my sins away. And now I sing a brand new song, ‘Amazing Grace,’ Christ Jesus paid the debt that I could never pay.” A beautiful song, but the reality of it is more beautiful. That is why we can keep singing “I keep falling in love with Him, over and over and over and over again.” Why? Because He has washed our sins away.

     Jesus died to make a way for man to come back to the Father; to restore the fellowship with God that was lost because of sin. Redemption involves buying back that which once was owned. Jesus first created us, then he died to purchase us back from Satan, whom we were slaves to, because of sin. For both of these reasons our lives belong to Him and we should serve Him as our Lord and Master. To those who have given their hearts to Jesus, who have made Him the Lord of their lives, they have had an exchange of ownership, and no longer belong to the Devil because they have been “purchased with the blood of Jesus.” 1 Peter 1:18-19 "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation [lifestyle] received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:" We have been delivered from the kingdom of darkness, into the kingdom of light. Colossians 1:12-14 "Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:" We are no longer under the power of Satan and his imps. Satan has no legal rights to the believers life, who knows and believes what Jesus has purchased for him. But if Satan can get you to believe his lie, then he can keep you in bondage. It depends on your faith. Do you believe and put your faith in the Word and testimony of God, or in the lie of Satan? Isaiah 53:1 "Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?" The arm of the Lord is only revealed to those who believe His report. If we will accept and believe it, we can receive and walk in the freedom of Christ, provided for us through Calvary. If we do not believe it, we will stay bound by the enemy. That is the condition of many professing Christians today. They have believed a lie rather than the Word of God and they are bound by that lie.

      Genesis 3:15 is Satan's defeat at the hand of the one who was the “Seed of woman.” Satan made every effort to stop Christ from being born into this world, and stop him after He was in it. He thought the Cross would be his ultimate victory and stop Jesus from fulfilling the prophecy of Genesis 3:15 "And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." He must have thought; after all, how can a dead man put his foot on my head and crush it. He hadn’t understood that Jesus would rise from the dead. He didn’t understand God’s plan, or he never would have crucified the Lord of glory. He didn’t know he was bringing about the plan of God and his own defeat. He was the instrument of His own defeat. When Jesus said “It is finished,” He was saying, our salvation was complete, the price had been paid. He had fulfilled all that He came to do, obeyed the Father in everything, taken upon himself the sins of the human race, and crushed Satan under his feet. The veil was rent, and all men could now freely go to the Father, through His blood. You cannot talk about bondages being broken and prisoners being set free outside of the Gospel of the Cross and the blood of Jesus Christ. Hebrews 10:19-23 "Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)" The resurrection of Christ is our ultimate hope and victory. Because He lives, we shall live. 1 Corinthians 15:20-28 "But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all."

     Let’s look at Christ’s victory at Calvary again. Colossians 2:15 "And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it." Hebrews 2:14 "Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the Devil;" This is the reality of the Cross in our lives. 1 John 4:4 "Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world."  Revelation  12:11 "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death." Is it true? Can it possibly not be true? Anything less is not God’s Word, but a lie. We enter into Christ’s victory. He overcame, and because He overcame, we can overcome. We become partaker of His victory. When we identify with Christ Satan is put under our feet, because he is under Jesus’ feet. Satan is defeated and his methods have been exposed. He is the master of lies, deception, and murder. He works through tormenting, delusions, oppression, visitation, vexation, and possession. But Christ has given authority to the Church to cast out devils. We are to wage spiritual warfare against the enemy. Christians are not represented by the picture of someone in a hammock with an iced tea, but a soldier in armor, in battle. We read 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 "For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)"  Ephesians 6:12 "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." They run this world. Satan is the god of this world. But we are not of this world. We have come out of his kingdom so he has no authority over us. Jesus has won the battle for us and given us power and authority over the powers of hell. Again let’s read Luke 10:19 "Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you."  Revelation  1:5-6 "And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen." Are you an “us”? Revelation  5:9-10 "Thou art worthy to take the book, and open the seals thereof; for thou wast slain, and hast redeemend us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation, and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth." We are spiritual kings and priests unto God, now, in this life. We have been seated with Christ in heavenly places (Ephesians 2:6 "And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:"). What is Christ seated upon? A throne. What are we seated upon? Thrones. But not literal thrones. It is our position in Christ: where he has placed us in the spiritual realm. Where is He? “Far above all” the powers of hell. Where are we supposed to be then? Ephesians 1:19-2:1 "And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, [This is to believers, not unbelievers] according to the working of his mighty power, Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all. And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins:" So, then where have we been placed “in Christ?” Far above all principalities and powers, with Christ in heavenly places, to rule and reign with Him over all the powers of hell that come against us, that we can walk in the freedom and liberty of Christ Jesus.

     Matthew 16:19"And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." Read this scripture with your name in it. Keys are the sign of authority. Acting upon and within Christ’s authority, the believer binds and looses situations in the lives of others through prayer. Spiritual authority is delegated and conferred upon us by the Lord Jesus Christ, whom we have been joined to. The value of delegated authority is dependant upon the one who stands behind that authority which has been given to you. Jesus is the Lord of all; Very God; Eternal God; Emmanuel. So when He delegates, He has the power and authority to back it up.

     To understand the phrase “binding and loosing” we need to further look at actual examples. Matthew 21:2 "Saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto me."Consider this in the spiritual realm, as well as the natural realm. Luke 13:11-13 "And, behold, there was a woman which had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bowed together, and could in no wise lift up herself. And when Jesus saw her, he called her to him, and said unto her, Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity. And he laid his hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God." Luke 13:15-16 "The Lord then answered him, and said, Thou hypocrite, doth not each one of you on the sabbath loose his ox or his ass from the stall, and lead him away to watering? And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?" Shouldn’t she be set free? The word “loosed” also means untied, delivered. John 11:44 "And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go." You do this. I’ve done my part, now it’s your turn. Jesus’ use of binding and loosing clearly teaches that we are to do it, and are not to pray for Him to “bind the enemy” for us. He did His part at Calvary, and He has given us the authority and the commandment to set the captives free: by “binding” the demonic powers and “loosing” the one who is captive.

     An Old Testament scripture dealing with deliverance will give further reinforcement to this doctrinal teaching and the position of the true believer. Daniel 3:24-27 "Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonied, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God. Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither. Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, came forth of the midst of the fire. And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king's counsellors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them." They went through the fire, but nothing was burned except their BONDAGES, the ropes with which they were bound and tied. The fire only set them free. Who was the fourth man? Has Jesus not always walked with every believer through the fire and the flood, and every trial that you’ve ever faced? Sometimes it takes trials to burn off our bondages, but Jesus always gives the necessary grace and the glory of His presence brings the believer through the fire without even a trace of the smell of fire upon him.

     Believers need to understand that the ministry of deliverance, of binding and loosing and casting out demons, is not just for a few special people; but it is for all true believers who come to know their position in Christ and His commission to them. The credibility of many is damaged because of their flamboyant style of casting demons out of everything, with much pomp, show and shouting. There are no “experts” in the area of casting out demons. The faithful believing believer who knows the power of Jesus’ Name and the efficacy of the blood, the finished works of Calvary and the power of the shed Blood of Jesus is the one who ministers effectively to those in bondage. No titles are required, no doctor of divinity degree, or whatever. You only have to be a true believer. It’s for those who believe. Do you believe? True deliverance is being ministered by many who quietly follow Jesus’ example without show and ceremony. Jesus did not allow the demons to control the situation or to scream and talk to him. He commanded them to be silent and come out. Jesus never put on a three ring circus show for others to see. Mark 1:23-26"And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God. And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him." No show, just come out. No conversation with them. No asking what their names are. Just come out! Let’s read this again.  Luke 13:11-12 "And, behold, there was a woman which had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, [a devil]   ." V.16 "And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?" Jesus always laid hands on the people He healed, except when He spoke healing for a person some distance away.

     Much confusion is caused by the so called “deliverance” ministers who have a lust for attention and the ministry but are not themselves clean. In the laying on of hands in such situations, demons can be passed from on person to another; either from the one laying on hands or the one whom hands are laid upon. This is why Paul warned Timothy about laying on of hands. 1 Timothy 5:22"Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men's sins: keep thyself pure."

     Any Spirit filled believer who is walking in faith and obedience to the Word, will be able to speak the Name of Jesus by faith and bring about deliverance for those who are bound. You don’t pray for deliverance for anyone who has not repented of their sins. You do not sound a trumpet before yourselves, but simply deal with those who are bound. The criteria for being able to minister deliverance is clean hands and a pure heart by one who knows the power of the Name of Jesus Christ. But that Name can only be invoked by one who knows and has a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ and has His Spirit within, otherwise one can become attacked oneself as happened to the seven sons of Sceva.

     We must also understand that all areas of bondage are not demonic bondages. We also have to deal with the flesh and its many manifestations. Though a person may need deliverance from bad habits and attitudes, it is first necessary to see them as sin. The bound person is first responsible deal with himself and his sin. The term “the devil made me do it” is invalid as a claim, and will not help the one in need of the Lord’s deliverance. Facing the facts realistically and identifying the problems, followed by repentance and cleansing, alone will break the old patterns. Faith can then spring up in the heart of the “new creature” in Christ who has left his old ways behind. A change takes place in his lifestyle and something has been left behind, his sins.  2 Corinthians 5:17 "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."

     The new “born again” believer has been changed and will find himself thinking new thoughts, having new motivations, and a changed value system as well as new moral standards or values. As he seeks the Lord in prayer and reads His Word, he will soon discover an inner transformation that is happening by the working of the Spirit of God within himself. Romans 8:29"For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren." 2 Corinthians 3:18 "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."

     When God created Adam, He spoke the words of Genesis 1:26-27 "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. [If we had the place that Adam had, we wouldn’t have to worry about keeping the bugs out of our garden and from eating our fruit.] So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them." Then, when Adam sinned, the image of God in him was obscured. He now had a new fallen nature and image. When Seth was born, he was in the likeness and image of Adam after he fell into sin, and not in the image of God. Genesis 5:3"And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth:" Thus the entire human race has perpetuated itself in Adam’s likeness and image and not God’s. The process is only reversed when Christ is received into a life as Lord and Savior. Only by being born into the family of God can an individual be cut off from his Adamic heritage, and be restored into the image of God. The maturing Christian, who is walking in faith and obedience, is being transformed and conformed into the image of Jesus, and that work will be complete only when we stand in His presence. It is progressive, and must continue as long as we are alive. 1 John 3:2 "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."  1 Corinthians 15:49 "And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly." Colossians 3:10 "And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:" God is bringing us back to His image.

     Bondages are for setting free! From whatever source - whether sin, sinners or Satan - none can withstand the Mighty Name of Jesus spoken in faith by a true blood washed, born again, Spirit filled believer. In His Name, by His Power, based upon the covenant of His Blood shed at Calvary, there is victory and deliverance. We are not to be a defensive army for God, but an offensive one. We are to violently wage war against the enemy of our souls. Matthew 11:12 "And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, [The Devil is doing violence to you, but what do you do in response to him?] and the violent take it by force." We are not to allow the Devil to rob us of the blessing and provisions of God, His salvation, healing, and deliverance.  We won’t be denied by the Devil.  When he comes violently against us, we become more violent against him and we fight until we overcome and get the victory. We stand and endure until we overcome, for he that endures to the end shall be saved. We stand against him by faith. We are to make no concessions, and no compromises with the enemy. We are to stand firm on the Word of God with faith in His promises and be obedient to His command to “set the captives free.” We are not freeloaders, bench warmers, fun loving, sport minded, worldly, have a good time, go to the beach party Christians. We are to follow Jesus as He leads us from victory to victory, glory to glory: no battle, no victory. If there is nothing to overcome, you will not be an overcomer. Jesus has always been and will always be victorious over all the powers of hell, for He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and there is none like unto Him. He alone is Lord of all.

     Burdens shared, Bruises healed, and Bondages broken, are necessary steps for anyone who will come into the fulness of the liberty and victory of Christ and live the overcoming life that God desires for each of us to live. As Jesus forgives us and we forgive others, as He becomes our Lord, and we reject all others (anyone or thing that had first place in our lives), through the power of the blood of Jesus and the Holy Spirit, we are renewed to walk in the newness of the life of Christ, in love, in liberty, and in light. Now the one who was once wounded can bring healing to others who are still wounded. That which Satan meant for bad in your life, God will turn into good: not only in your life, but the lives of others.. There is an added dimension of the Life of Jesus and the fulness of the Holy Spirit to the believer who has been fully set free and made whole by the Power of God and His Word. Mature Christians have risen above the wreckage of their own earlier lives to stand tall and strong in and for the kingdom of God. Then others who are hurting are drawn to them. They have the freedom of Christ, and live an abundant life, conquering over all the power of hell, sin, their flesh and the world. They know fulness of joy and peace that passes understanding. They live for the day when they will be granted an abundant entrance into the fulness of the kingdom of God and their inheritance. 2 Peter 1:11 "For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ." That’s if the ten verses above are happening in your life, and you’re growing in grace. 2 Peter 1:5-8 "And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;” “And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;” “And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.” “For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ."  What are you doing? You’re growing in grace and becoming more like Him. Your life is being changed and transformed. John 8:32-38 "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free? Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. I know that ye are Abraham's seed; but ye seek to kill me, because my word hath no place in you.” “I speak that which I have seen with my Father: and ye do that which ye have seen with your father." There is a contrast there: they don’t have the same father.  Romans 8:37 "Nay, in all these things [mentioned above: tribulation, distress, persecution, famine, nakedness, peril, or sword] we are more than conquerors through him that loved us."  Are we? 2 Corinthians 2:14 "Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.What does “always” mean? Every time. John 10:10 "The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." Most who claim to be Christians are not living an abundant life. They’re miserable, unhappy, and empty; not full of His life. Jesus said He came to give us abundant life, but they don’t have it. Where’s the problem? Has God failed? No. The problem is with them. They walk in sin and unbelief.  John 15:11 "These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full."  Does that include you and I? If we are Christians and we have no joy, then you have a problem with your salvation. David spoke of the joy of his salvation. Could the problem be that maybe you walked away from your salvation somewhere, or put it on a shelf? David said “restore unto me the joy of my salvation” when he had sinned and was repenting. He was under guilt, condemnation and God’s judgment for that sin. But afterward, after he was restored in his relationship with the Lord, he regained the joy of his salvation. Philippians 4:7 "And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." What does shall mean? Is it an absolute? It isn’t maybe or might, or could be; but shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. The only way it can keep your mind is if you’re taking your thoughts captive and doing verse 8. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." And what do you do if other thoughts come into your mind according to 2 Corinthians 10:3-5? Cast them down and bring those thoughts into the obedience of Christ, to conformity of His Word.

     Before conversion we lived from “iniquity to iniquity,” working one unrighteous deed after another. After becoming Christians, we began to grow “from faith to faith” from the first beginnings of faith when we received the Lord, to great feats of faith, as mature believers. We come to the place of receiving “grace upon grace.” It is the nature of God’s grace to abound. “And He giveth more grace”. And He adds grace to grace. Sometimes when we are going through difficult times, we will have to “hope against hope.” Then we grow from “strength to strength” and through it all we are transformed from “glory to glory.” It may seem that this process of transformation that the Lord is working in our lives is taking a long time, but one day it will be complete and we who are faithful will stand in His presence forever and be like Him. Then this time won’t seem to have been so long at all. Romans 6:19 "I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness." Romans 1:17 "For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith."It’s a progression. John 1:16 "And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace."  Romans 4:18 "Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be." Psalm 84:7 "They go from strength to strength, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God." Zion: Those that are walking in salvation  go from strength to strength. 2 Corinthians 3:18 "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." We started adding sin to sin, iniquity to iniquity, but now we have come from faith to faith, grace to grace, glory to glory. Your life is being changed. It will end in face to face, in the presence of Jesus. That’s what we are trying to grow to, beginning with faith. We continue to grow in grace and the knowledge of Him until we come to His fulness. What a progression! 1 Corinthians 13:12 "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known."Bondages are to be broken, captives are to be set free. Jesus offers deliverance of every bondage and we can come to that perfect liberty in Christ and know what the scripture means “Whosoever the son shall set free, shall be free indeed.” Completely, totally, absolutely free from all bondage; no matter what it is: Bondages to sin, to people, cultic bondages. No matter what the bondages are, Jesus came to set the captives free and to break the power of sin and destroy the power of Satan in our lives and to give us His victory. God does not want His people to be in bondage. He didn’t die on the cross so we could stay in bondage, but so we could be translated from the kingdom of darkness, from the power and authority of Satan over our lives, and bring us into the kingdom of light, the kingdom of His dear Son who has purchased us with His blood and set us free.

     Let us be those who will stand shoulder to shoulder and pour in the oil and wine and minister healing to those who are bruised and bound. Let us stand in Christ’s victory for those who are bound. Let us proclaim the power of the Name and the Blood of Jesus to set men free. Let us be better and not bitter; healers and not wounders; deliverers and not binders; victorious and not victimized; forgiven and forgiving: until Jesus comes.

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