Freedom Quest: Matthew 12:22-29; 43-45
“25) And knowing their thoughts Jesus said to them, “Any kingdom divided against itself is laid waste; and any city or house divided against itself will not stand. 26) If Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then will his kingdom stand? 27) If I by Beelzebul cast out demons, by whom do your sons cast them out? For this reason they will be your judges. 28) But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. 29) Or how can anyone enter the strong man’s house and carry off his property, unless he first binds the strong man? And then he will plunder his house.” Matthew‬ ‭12‬:‭25‬-‭29‬ ‭
Jesus now begins to elaborate on the subject of demon possession and deliverance ministry. He returns to the subject briefly in Matthew 12:43-45. Let’s make a few observations.
First, demon possession is real. It is the result of a demonic spirit entering the human spirit and thereby taking possession of the whole person. The demon is in control of the body, soul and spirit of the human host. The Bible lays out five different levels of demonic activity in the world. Demon possession is the forth level, and can only happen to a nonChristian.
Second, the concept of “Divide and Conquer” is one of Satan’s schemes. His kingdom is not divided, but he excels at dividing people. He works to divide marriages, families, churches, friendships and nations. He leaves behind a path of broken people and many trapped in chains of shameful bondage.
Third, Jesus taught that His kingdom and His Spirit has the power to cast out demons. Any child of God fully equipped and standing in the authority of Jesus Christ, can be effective in helping others come to freedom from the activity of the kingdom of darkness. Equipping others for this ministry has become a growing part of my calling.
Finally, Jesus observed that the only way to enter a strong man’s house and plunder his goods is to first bind the strong man. (Vs 29)This seems to be a reference to evangelism and reaching nonChristians with the gospel.
They are held captive in Satan’s house. It is essential that Christian’s become equipped at resisting, renouncing, binding and rebuking the enemy and his activity in the world. This is an essential part of intercessory prayer. This may be why the early Apostles did a reset in Acts 6:4 to devote themselves to “prayer and the ministry of the word.” Prayerless ministry is powerless ministry.
There are two extremes associated with the subject of spiritual warfare in the body of Christ today. The first is ignorance and denial. Satan exploits this to his advantage. The second is sensationalism and extremism. These people are misguided and often cause more damage than good.
But there are biblically founded and effective approaches to equip believers to recognize and stand firm against all the schemes of the enemy. Sadly, I graduated from Bible College without any equipping in this area, but Jesus spent considerable time training His disciples to be effective in this phase of ministry. This paradox has always baffled me!
The Freedom Quest Material that I’ve compiled over the years are the result of detailed biblical study and helping hundreds of people come to freedom “in Christ.” I am indebted to the works of men like Niel Anderson and others that have helped equip me for this aspect of ministry. It is crucial that every Christian has a biblical foundation for spiritual warfare in these last days.
The live workshop that I teach provides a biblically grounded and systematic approach for intervention ministry. This is basically the materials I have used to equip pastors, missionaries and Christian workers around the world to be effective in the area of spiritual warfare.
The next workshop I am teaching in the United States is January 6-8, 2023 at Village Creek Bible Camp near Lansing, Iowa. Contact the camp directly to reserve a spot. It will feature the latest revised and updated materials.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global