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A Controlling Spirit - Poison in the Pot

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I know we have all heard the clichť said by someone, ďIíd be a rich man if I had a dollar for every time somebody ___Ē and you fill in the blank. Now I might not be a rich man, for that is a bit of exaggeration for today it takes a lot of dollars to become rich, however I would have a good bit more if I had a dollar for everyone I have met with a controlling spirit.

There is another word for it and it is called a spirit of witchcraft, for that is exactly what witchcraft and Harry Potter are all about, getting others to do what you want them to, getting your way with people, influencing them especially without their knowing it and why they are doing what they are doing. All those into witchcraft of any kind are into wanting to control others and manipulate people and circumstances for personal advantage. All so-called white witchcraft or black witchcraft is the same and by and through familiar spirits.

Yet there are many with a controlling spirit who are not witches in practice. They donít claim to be and donít know they are, but before God, in reality, which is spiritually, they are practicing witchcraft in its basest level. Their motives and purposes are the same, whether or not they do magic rituals and incantations or not. They are a spiritual witch, just without a coven of other witches to which they belong as part of a group. They are loner witches.

I have even known a person who was such a loner witch that once said about someone they were unhappy with and wished bad to come to, ďI wish their transmission would fall outĒ and the next day, it did. I personally knew this witch and one who testified to this happening, who also had a familiar spirit and worked with her, but got delivered of the others control and power.† The first woman who cursed a co-worker was the one who brought the second into witchcraft and gave her a familiar spirit.

Let me first make a distinction between a spirit of control or a controlling spirit and having diligence to fulfill ones responsibilities. Many people confuse those two and rationalize their controlling spirit by saying something like, ďwell, Iím just trying to live up to my responsibilities.Ē That is why it is so vital for each of us to know and understand the difference. Living up to your responsibilities simply means that you work hard and diligently to fulfill those responsibilities, whatever they are at home in your family life or at work or in any relationship you have.

We know what God says about slothfulness and laziness. He really has no place for the lazy. That is why Godís Word says ďFor even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.Ē (2 Thessalonians 3:10). I donít think that working hard or vigorously, faithfully with diligence at whatever you do, whether it is to fulfill your family responsibilities, your professional responsibilities, ministry responsibilities or marriage responsibilities, whatever it is, we have the command to be responsible, diligent and hard working.

But that is very different form the controlling spirit. Controlling people work hard to manipulate other people, events and circumstances to make things go their way. Controlling people spend their waking hours trying to figure out how to spin, engineer and manipulate situations to their advantage and gain. Controlling people get very upset and angry, when things donít go their way. Controlling people convince themselves that the world around them will fall apart if they are not in control, whether it is at home or at work or where ever they are in what every position or situation they are in. They must be in control to be comfortable. They think that nothing can be done right; nothing can happen that is any good without them, without their input, without their direction and control.

Believe me when I tell you that their are people that think that even God canít do anything without them. They think that they know better than God and that God needs their help, their input, their planning, their scheming, their ideas and plans in order for things to go the right way, to get done right as they see it. They believe that their way is the only possible right way, the only proper way and beneficial way and of course it is always for their own best interest because they are so self-centered, thinking they are the center of the universe. I know that everyone knows someone like this.

Please listen to this. All of us without exception, me included, know what it is to struggle with this issue. But the degrees and level of struggles differs form one to another. Why is this topic so important to the issue of living by faith for a believer in the midst of such a faithless and unbelieving world and society around them? What does this have to do with a controlling spirit? That is a question that needs an answer.

The controlling spirit is the number one enemy of faith. The Controlling spirit is the biggest hindrance to the work of faith in my life and yours. The controlling spirit can overwhelm faith every time. The controlling spirit leaves no room for faith to operate in our lives. The controlling spirit leaves no room for individuality and individual freedom when a person with a controlling spirit is trying to exercise control over you. But more than all this, the controlling spirit ruins relationship and causes headaches and causes loneliness and isolation and ultimately squeezes God and faith out of a live and is very grieving to the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit cannot work in a life with a controlling spirit for He is a gentlemen. The Holy Spirit is totally blocked and stopped from operating and working in the life of a person with a controlling spirit. Until they are delivered of this spirit and it is a spirit and not just the person, they cannot come to Christ; they cannot put their faith in Christ or trust or believe in anyone or anything but themselves. It causes the person with the controlling spirit to worship self. Self sits on the throne of their heart and rules everything and all they can think of, the only perspective they can see and understand is their own. Any idea or though contrary to their way, their ideas is unacceptable and they will fight such, even ďtooth and nailĒ. People with a controlling spirit are heady, highminded, head strong, overbearing, implacable, highly opinionated, ungiving, uncaring people who struggling to have things their way, even against all odds.

Let us look at a Scriptural example of the danger of the controlling spirit and how to be delivered from that controlling spirit.

2 Kings 4:38-41 ďAnd Elisha came again to Gilgal: and there was a dearth in the land; and the sons of the prophets were sitting before him: and he said unto his servant, Set on the great pot, and seethe pottage for the sons of the prophets. And one went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine, and gathered thereof wild gourds his lap full, and came and shred them into the pot of pottage: for they knew them not. So they poured out for the men to eat. And it came to pass, as they were eating of the pottage, that they cried out, and said, O thou man of God, there is death in the pot. And they could not eat thereof. But he said, Then bring meal. And he cast it into the pot; and he said, Pour out for the people, that they may eat. And there was no harm in the pot

This is a live example of how the controlling spirit wrought intrusion into Godís provision. This is how this intrusion into Godís provision could have brought misery and possible death to the whole community. This is how the person with the controlling spirit sought to improve on Godís plan and purpose and how such an effort to change and improve on Godís plan can be devastating and cause death. The one with the controlling spirit not only hurts the one who yields themselves to this controlling spirit, but it hurts families and communities and the people of God and can hurt the work of God.

Let us summarize the three important points of this passage. First, there was a famine in the land. Most of us donít truly know or understand the full affects of what a famine is and does because we havenít lived or been in the midst of one. Those who have visited countries with such or seen enough news coverage of a land in famine can at least get an idea of the terrible devastation it brings with death to many who die of starvation. There was a famine in the land in this passage and there was both a natural and a spiritual disaster.

Be very careful in the times of stress in your life. These times of stress can either be an opportunity to trust God with all of your heart or they can become windows for disaster. They can become a time of exercising faith in the faithfulness of God or they can become a doorway to calamity and tragedy.

Back to the story. In the midst of this famine, there was a seminary that was founded in Gilgal by the prophet Elijah. When Elisha succeeded Elijah, he inherited the seminary, or school of the prophets. It is kind of being like the president of a college. Elisha was responsible for their training and wellbeing. The students at the seminary were obviously affected by the famine like everyone else in the land. They were hungry and feeling the affect of the famine around them. Elisha had been on a preaching mission somewhere and upon return to check on the community of faith he was training for ministry, realizes what is going on, having seen the famine. So he tells his servant to go and get the large pot, not a small or medium size, but the large pot and make a stew that is enough for everyone.

Wait a minute Elisha, you just learned that there is a famine in the land, so how is this going to happen, how am I going to do this, where will we get the food. Good question? Know that God will always make provision for His faithful ones in tough times. God has always refreshed his righteous saints in times of disaster. God has always proved his sufficiency to his faithful saints in times of need. God will always honor those who honor him. God will always be a light to his faithful ones in the midst of darkness. God will always bring water out of the rock to quench the thirst of His faithful people. God will always multiply and increase the little that His faithful ones have. So God supernaturally provides for His people through the faith of the prophet Elisha.

This is important, donít miss it. There are times you will laugh and need to look at this. God was, is and always will be in the miracle business. God will never go out of the miracle business. That is part of who He is. He is supernatural, even in the midst of calamity, even in the midst of natural disaster, even in the midst of judgment, even in the midst of stressful times, God will always move on behalf of His faithful children.

In the book of Genesis, there was a famine in the Land of Canaan. This threatened to wipe out Jacob and all his children. It meant that the whole nation of Israel, from whom came the Messiah would have been wiped out. But ahead of time, God sent Joseph to the land of Egypt in order to spare them because God is always ahead of time.

In the book of Exodus when everyone in the nation of Egypt were plunged into darkness, God supernaturally provided light for His children.

In the book of 1 Kings when there was a famine that struck the land of Israel, God supernaturally provided for the prophet Elijah.

Psalm 84:11 ďFor the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.Ē He didnít say perfect, but upright, which from the Hebrew means undefiled, without spot, sound, complete, whole. That is all fulfilled by being washed by the blood of Jesus and being under the grace of God. It has to do with your hearts attitude, motivation and condition. God doesnít expect absolute sinless perfection from us for He knows that the only time we will be perfect is when we are face to face with Jesus and have a body just like Him, after the resurrection. But he wants us to walk blameless before Him and that is not the same as walking with perfection. †Walking blameless is different than perfection. Walking blameless, is knowing when to repent, and knowing how to repent. Walking blameless means that you are sensitive to God which brings us immediately under conviction when you do wrong or are headed in the wrong direction and you donít wait, you donít delay or resist the leading of His Spirit to change direction and if needed, to repent to keep you fellowship with God open and alive.

Too many want to hide behind semantics and say; well I confessed my sin so many years ago, so what! Are you walking in repentance? Repentance is an ongoing thing, an attitude of the heart and a walk before God of staying before Him and not walking in presumption and in unconfessed sin. The God donít see my sin, He just sees the blood is a copout and self-deception. God does see your sin, when you donít walk in repentance and you havenít taken your sin to the cross and put it under the blood. But too many want to believe that repentance is a once in a lifetime thing, just an act of something they do to get forgiven and they donít even have to name their sins, just make a general statement like, ďforgive my sinĒ and think that will erase all past, present and future sins until the die. Itís quick, easy, requires little effort, not remorse, no real change in attitude, lifestyle or turning away from evil, but just some words some call a ďprofession of faithĒ that is only required one time in your life to grant you eternal security in salvation. Oh, so easy and it costs you nothing at all, but a few words and no matter how you live your life or what you do, your forgiven and saved. That is not even logical, much less Biblical and nothing more than man-made heresy.

There is the story of an Africa evangelist. He was from Africa and went to an area where cannibalism was still practiced. After winning a number of people from this particular tribe to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, that area began to experience famine. All the years that they were worshipping idols and practicing this abomination, the rains never failed. But now that many had turned to Christ, and given their lives to Him, the rains stopped. So now they turn against the Evangelist and ordered him to leave their town and take his god with them. This evangelist refused to leave and the chief finally called him in and said to him, ďunless we get rain by tomorrow morning, you will be our next meal.Ē This man went to his tent and went on his face before God. He has never been in a situation like this before, he has never faced this before, heís never prayed for anything like this before; and he goes into his tent and goes on his face before God and takes hold of the ďhorns of the altarĒ and cries unto the Lord and by daylight thunder was heard in the distance and rain came and refreshed the entire region.

You know what the problem is with us Christians here in the West with our post-modern culture is that we have created a god after our own thinking who fits neatly into our brain size. We have created a god in our own image that conforms to our own likeness and dislikes. If we donít like something, God must not like it, if we like something, then He must like it also. We have created a god who is obedient to our wishes, our servant. We have created a god who must desire what we desire, a god who will never judge us no matter what we do. We have created a god that when we donít need him, we can walk out away from him, but then when we come into a hard situation and need him, we can just go back and get him to act on our behalf. We have created a god, who is helpless without us, a god of our own making.

You see all the sins in the world, all the disasters in the world and all the calamities and things that are happening, but the greatest tragedy in the world is that which is among Godís people, because they cease to believe that God is supernatural and in the supernatural business. They great tragedy is that most who go to church donít believe that Jesus is the Lord of all, sitting on the throne of the Universe and they try to bring God down to their image and make Him like unto man and even make Him their servant instead of giving Him His rightful place as Lord in their lives and submitting their lives to His Lordship, to honor, please and serve Him. Instead they serve self and honor self and please self and worship self, though they donít realize it because they have been deceived and the heart is so easy to deceive. That is why God spoke the words of Jeremiah 17:9 ďThe heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?Ē

In the midst of this famine, God supernaturally provided for this community of faith through the faith of Elijah. Elisha told the servant to get the big pot and go and make a stew for the people. So he goes and brings the big pot and makes this stew and it would have been great if the story ended here and everything went as planned and desired and all were provided for and praising God. But, to the controlling spirit, Godís miracle is not enough. They always have to improve on Godís provision, they always have to improve on Godís faithfulness and modify Godís plan and they love to get the credit for self. Hear the pot boiling this delicious stew. He could smell it. Then in verse 39, one of them went out and found a wild vine and gathered some herbs and gourds put them into his cloak thinking they would improve and add to the recipe. ďAnd one went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine, and gathered thereof wild gourds his lap full, and came and shred them into the pot of pottage: for they knew them not

I know that Elisha has faith and is providing for us, but this will help things out and stretch them a bit farther so there is more food thinking it would make things tastier or increase the amount, or both. So he then tosses that stuff into the pot, probably thinking how great a job he was doing by adding the additional ingredients, probably thinking he was doing them a favor and couldnít wait until they all said how wonderful it was and he would take special credit for what he had done. You know the kind, ďwell, I know God provides, but not without my help.Ē So he brings his goodies and tosses them into the pot thinking how good it will be. Do you see the humor in this?

If not, then you have not deal with the controlling spirit. If you are gritting your teeth right now and grimacing over it, rather than seeing the humor, then you have not begun to be delivered from the spirit of control. And faith cannot operate in your life as long as the spirit of control has control over you. Will you listen to me in this? This guy just couldnít stand for God to do something without his help. He could not stand to just receive from the hand of God. He couldnít stand to just be a child of God at the table; he wanted to be the father, the provider. This guy couldnít stand just being the servant; he wanted to be the master. He couldnít stand just being a guest of God; he wanted to be the chief and the host. So he wanted to improve upon Godís recipe.

Be careful when you try to improve upon Godís provision. Unbeknownst to this man, what he had just added to the pot, Godís pot of provision was poison. What he had added to Godís provision was death. What he had just added to Godís miracle was a disaster. What he just added to Godís work of faith was neutralizing the miracle of Godís provision. Listen, all of Godís big helpers. God loves you but God wants for you to give Him room in your life to work in and through you. God wants you to meet the condition of his promises. God wants you to trust Him with all your being, period.

Remember when Cain didnít like the idea of offering the animal sacrifice and shedding the blood the way God had taught his parents, Adam and Eve, but instead decided that he would come to God his way, on his own terms and it caused him to be filled with anger and a fit of jealousy when God would not accept his sacrifice. But it was his own fault and doing and not Abelís, but instead of seeing his own failure and admitting to his own rebellion and disobedience as the problem and reason for Godís rejection, he killed his brother Abel. But it was Cain who had poisoned the pot, his own pot, poisoning his heart and bringing physical death to his brother and spiritual death to himself.

The sons of Aaron, Moses brother wanted to worship God their own way, they poisoned the pot. The sons of Eli the priest decided to worship God their way, brought defeat to the nation of Israel and their own destruction. They poisoned the pot. King Saul offered God sacrifice His way, not waiting for the Prophet Samuel, getting out of the will of God and caused disaster to the nation of Israel. He poisoned the pot. In Acts a couple named Ananias and Sapphira took control by trying to deceive the church and poisoned the pot and brought death upon themselves.

Anytime we try to do things our way instead of Godís way, we poison the pot. We hinder the blessing of God; we stop His blessings for us dead in their tracts. Itís a dangerous thing to operate your business your way, ministry your way, to raise and bring up children your way, to serve God your way, to do anything your way that is contrary to Godís way. These things will always poison the pot.

The good news is in verse 41. ďBut he said, Then bring meal. And he cast it into the pot; and he said, Pour out for the people, that they may eat. And there was no harm in the pot.Ē Elisha said bring some flour and put it in the pot and the poison was neutralized. What is this all about? What is this saying to us? The flour in the Old Testament is a type of the resurrected Christ. In the scripture the flour always represents the resurrected Christ. The flour is the result of the crushing and the milling of the grain of wheat. Remember in John Jesus is speaking of himself and says that unless the grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it will not produce a harvest. He was speaking of Himself. Jesus is the flour taken to the pot of death, and brought life. Jesus is the flour that neutralizes the poison of death and helplessness. Jesus is the flour that has put an end to manís efforts. Jesus is the four that put an end to manís desire to be saved by his own good works. Jesus is the flour that ended the power of ceremonial law. Jesus is the flour that raised us up from death. Jesus is the flour that saves us from ourselves. Jesus is the flour that prevents disaster that is caused through the controlling spirit.

The resurrected Jesus Christ is the only one who can give you the power to overcome the spirit of control. The resurrected Jesus Christ is the only one who can give you power to nullify the power of the controlling spirit so you can do his work. The question is, will you confess to Him and then let Him take over. Will you let the flour come into the pot of your life and neutralize the poison of the controlling spirit?

Every time, the spirit of control will stop the miracle of blessing and provision that God has for you. If you are facing this spirit, ask God to deliver you from it today so that you can be free to serve Him and do his will instead of your own.

For a message on deliverance of how to break free from one with a controlling spirit click here

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