Spiritual Battles: Old Testament vs. New Testament

In the New Testament, Jesus Christ arms his disciples with treading power and the ability to bind and loose in the spirit realm to defeat the enemy. In what ways is the spiritual authority different from  the Old Testament when David takes down Goliath in the name of the Lord, the God of Israel with a sling shot and a rock? I’ve been contemplating the difference.

Matthew 16:19 (KJV) 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.

21 In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight.

Clearly David was able to take down Goliath with his faith in God and knowing his opponent had a weakness, he was not circumcised.

In my mind, David saw that Goliath was not in obedience to God and he saw this as a weakness attached to Goliath’s forehead. David had faith that God would be on his side and had an intimate relationship with the Lord and a past history of God delivering him from difficult situations. I believe it was the difficult trials that gave this youth the faith and trust in god that he would put Goliath into the palm of his hand.

David verbally proclaims how he will take down Goliath. You see the power of verbal declaration in Proverbs 18:21.

Proverbs 18:21 (KJV) Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

Jesus told his disciples that he has given them power to  bind and loose and to tread  in the spirit realm. Jesus is at the right hand of God and intercedes for us when we pray. I think the difference between the Old Testament and the New Testament is that the sling shot and rock are no longer required? 

 

Jesus vs Barabbas | Did Envy Crucify Jesus?

Jesus Christ was the only sinless human that ever walked on Earth. Yet despite the fact that Jesus never sinned, nor did any deceit come out of his mouth, jealousy and envy found a way to crucify him. Interestingly, in Matthew 27:18 KJV, Pilate states that envy was the reason that Jesus Christ was delivered to him for crucifixion. 

I believe this is a liberating concept for any sinner who has been called out of darkness into the light; and has former sin still chasing behind them. We can look towards Jesus for comfort in the fact that even as holy, perfect and sinless as he was, persecution and envy still found a reason to crucify him.

Enduring persecution? Enlightening to imagine that even if you strive for the purest and uttermost sinless perfection, persecutors will find a reason. I’d go a step further to state that if a reason can’t be found, hatred and envy will inevitably create a reason.

I find that praying and striving for greater spiritual maturity helps as I try to work towards becoming more like Jesus and growing in peace that:

  • We are “called to suffer” (Romans 8:17).
  • Develop spiritual eyes to view the persecution as necessary and unavoidable as we are to share in Christ’s sufferings. An example of this I envision is when Jesus viewed the soldiers casting lots over his garments during crucifixion and with spiritual eyes and understanding, he forgave them (Luke 23:34). 

I imagine that Jesus was envied by well educated doctors, priests, government officials, wise men, sorcerers, magicians etc; as they heard people proclaim miraculous acts of a young man named Jesus Christ, who for example, made a blind man see by rubbing dirt in his eyes (John 9:6) and brought a man named Lazarus back to life? (John 11:41-43).

Could you imagine the city and state officials discussing the healing Jesus produced on a man who could not be contained by chains, who cried out day and night and cut himself with stones? Envision the city and state officials arriving to investigate the pig herders complaints that Jesus commanded a man’s demons to enter into two thousand pigs, who then ran into a lake and drowned. Consider the official’s dismay at the demon possessed man, sitting on the scene, clothed and in his right mind? (Mark 5:4 -15). 

Jesus was responsible for many miracles that may have led others to envy. Do you think envy was the reason the crowd chose to release Barabbas (convicted criminal) and to crucify Jesus Christ an innocent man? Can you share any personal experiences or thoughts about the dangers of envy and how it might apply to society today?

Matthew 27:18 (KJV) For he knew that for envy they had 
delivered him.

Matthew 27:20 But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.

21 The governor answered and said unto them, Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you? They said, Barabbas.

22 Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let him be crucified.

23 And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.

24 When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.

25 Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children.

 

 

 

 

 

Detach Through Humor

In the movie Forest Gump, Forest is being chased down by a group of men throwing rocks from a truck that’s trying to run him down. Throughout the film, Forest ironically shows a positive response to what most people would consider to be seriously traumatizing situations.

A walk home with Jenny, to Free Dr. Peppers to all you can eat ice cream… Forest finds a sense of joy or gratitude throughout his trying situations. I find humor in distressing situations can bring about some relief from the pain. Providing brief moments of joy, even while in suffering.

Likewise, if you need to escape, turn up your head phones and breakaway with music and find humor in the situation. Listen to something random that makes you laugh and removes you from the situation. Visualize some humor or focus on something you can find or bring gratitude to the situation. Forest brought gratitude and humor to everything. “Well… I got shot in the buttocks, but hey! I can have ALL the FREE ice cream I can eat!!!”

Forest Gump is a great example of a positive minded person, who found “Joy in all his sufferings.”

Matthew 18:3King James Version (KJV)

3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

If you dwell in self pity you’ll catch depression

If you dwell in self pity, you’ll catch depression. Conduct an it could always be worse assessment. Compassion for yourself while going through a trial is one thing, self pity is another. You’re an overcomer, you’re a survivor, you’re going to get through this part of the test! Embrace the training as it builds endurance and resilience.

The Day You Stop Learning

The day you believe you know so much that you believe a random person standing next to you has absolutely nothing they can offer or teach you, is the day you stop learning. There’s something you can learn from any and everyone.

1111Zion1111