3.2.1 Spiritual Warfare

3.2.1 屬靈爭戰

Shared by Teacher Ming

Where do Satan and his servants wage war to resist the Will of God? Especially to resist God’s children from having eternal life with God?  Where does this war take place? It takes place in a realm that we cannot see, the spiritual realm.

So, this war is real, and although some people want to deny it, when you actually encounter it, you realize that there is no way you can deny the existence of this battlefield and its reality.

I Corinthians 2:14-15 “The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. 15 The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments.”

What does this passage mean? It means the spiritual man can see through all things. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

It is mentioned here that the weapons of our warfare do not belong to flesh and blood. What Paul is telling us here is that apart from the war that we can see with our physical eyes, we need to realize that there is an unseen spiritual battlefield. Who is the opponent in the invisible spiritual realm? It is the strongholds of the evil one, his various schemes, and his self-exaltation that prevent people from recognizing God. What is the weapon of our warfare? It is the power we have before God; this is our weapon. The method of warfare is not between the flesh and blood that we are familiar with, but it is a battle in the Spirit, and all the Scriptures talk about this. Ephesians 6:12 “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

Who is the other opponent? The devil in the sky, in the scriptures, we have read that there are more than one or two battlefields. We've already seen several battlefields mentioned in the passages, and we'll summarize them. There are all kinds of schemes; to break down strongholds, to stop people from recognizing God, there are also demons, and there are also idols, and there are also entities. What does it mean? This is not a battle that we can win just by physical force. Whose battle is this? The battle of the spirit world. What are the types of spiritual warfare? It is the battle of the angels because angels belong to the spirit. In these verses, we read that God helps us as if we were part of His army.

Of course, we know that over the years, it doesn't feel as if many of His children will make it into His army. But one thing we know for sure is that the day, the minute, the second we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, we have entered the battlefield. Imagine a place where there is a war going on and there are two armies, angels on one side and demons on the other. You think, ‘Now that I'm in this invisible realm, can I avoid this war?’ You can't avoid it. As soon as you enter, you are already in the middle of the battlefield, and you can only choose one side. Either you choose to be on God’s side, or you choose to be on the enemy’s side. The moment we accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior, we became Satan’s enemies. That may sound harsh, but it's the same thing, Satan becomes our enemy.

So, on the day we were saved, we decided, and when you prayed the sinner's prayer, you were making another declaration, a declaration of what? The declaration that you give up Satan's army and choose to join God's army. It doesn't matter if you have armor or not, it doesn't matter if you have shoes or not, I'm sorry, but you have made your choice. Some people ask, "How can I prove that the spiritual realm exists? I remember I read a book written by Missionary Ralph Mahoney, who is a global missionary, and he said that when you are in trouble, you know you are in a battle. There is one thing we need to understand, we need to know very clearly that we are talking about two kingdoms, one is the kingdom of darkness and the other is the kingdom of God. Why did I not mention God just now? I only mentioned the armies of the angels and the armies of the devil because Satan will always try to resist God's will, but the difference between God's power and Satan's power is too great, so let's not forget this point.

For this reason, Satan can only attack God's people and cause God to grieve. Do you remember what the Bible said about Satan, that he fell like lightning? One second Satan is in heaven, but when God appears, the next second he must go down immediately, which shows that there is a huge difference in the ratio of power. The kingdom of God is to fight against the kingdom of Satan, and many people think that the balance of power between God and Satan is about the same, but no, that is not how the Bible describes it, and the difference in power between the two is too great.

Rather, the difference in power between the two is too great, because Satan himself is a creature of God, and how can a creature be compared to the Creator, am I right? Just like if you are a computer, how can you compete with a person? You can't compete if the person tells you to shut down the computer, even if the computer is smart, the computer has to be shut down. We must understand this, that's why we mention the legions of angels and the legions of demons.

In this unseen realm, that is the spiritual realm, one enters the unseen realm, and in the unseen realm, one needs to know how authority operates. The kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness are opposed to each other. It operates outside of the realm of what we can see with our physical eyes. What happens in the spiritual realm affects the realm in which we are currently living. However, we have found that some of the heretics in the spiritual realm appear to be more successful in their operations than others, have you ever wondered about this? It is because many of them know how this realm works better and earlier than we do, but our churches often don't teach this, so Christians can only say that we see the current environment, forgetting to know how the spiritual realm works. So, it seems as if heretics understand more of the spiritual realm than some Christians do. I even read some books written by people who wrote about what happened to their souls after they went out (from their physical body), how they dealt with it, and what they did, which means they have more knowledge about the spiritual realm.

In fact, we did encounter a lot of obstacles in talking about this topic today, but God has marvelously helped us to be able to have so many people sitting here today. You see, the opposition between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness is done in the realm outside of us, and while many of us are still arguing about whether this realm still exists or not, in fact, many of the New Age movements and heresies that we know about have been operating in this realm for a very long time, and how do they operate? They use an illegal way to step into an area that is supposed to belong to the church, to enter the spiritual realm you need a legal/ correct way to enter. When we talk about entering the spiritual realm, you must have legal access, and if you have illegal access, I'm sorry, but you're going to run into the work of the enemy. Today we talked about authority, and then we're going to talk about the key and authority to enter the spiritual realm, and how we could get legitimate access to it.

First, we need to have an understanding that we have authority in this invisible realm. God gave us flesh and gave us this material world. He said that the birds of the sky, the fish of the sea, and all the creatures of the earth are under our control, and this is the authority given to man. Do not forget what Jesus said in the New Testament, that He gave us the authority to heal the sick and cast out demons, this is related to the spiritual realm, the invisible realm that we mentioned. Before we getting into spiritual realm, we need to know, first, we need to have authority. Secondly, what are the legitimate access to enter into the spiritual realm? The first key we mentioned is to know God’s will, His intention, and the things He wants us to do. Our understanding of the spiritual realm is based on the importance of relationships, especially our relationship with the Lord. If you do not have an intimate relationship with God, you are not able to receive His revelation, the important message He intends to release to us. An intimate relationship with the Lord enables us to enter the invisible realm.

The first key we mentioned is understanding God's will, and why we used to have daily Bible studies to talk about why we need to understand God's will for intercession. The previous course was to give you a foundation to understand that to enter the invisible realm, the first thing you must understand is what God's will is because when you understand God's will, you enter with a covenant. Some people say that this is consent. That's right, consent to who? Consent to God, I consent to God's seeing, I consent to God wanting me to do. When I go into the spiritual realm, the Bible says, ‘God is with me, who can resist me’, that's what it means.

The first step is to know what God wants me to do, and then I can agree with the Lord to do it or not to do it, of course, I can disagree, and of course, I have a free choice. When you agree with what God wants you to do, because of this manifestation, revelation from God, the covenant is automatically instituted in the spirit realm, so it becomes Whose will are you carrying? You enter this invisible realm with the imperial sword, with the divine decree, well, that's the first key.

The second key is the relationship with God. We often lack this second component. Many people can see and understand God's will and agree with Him in what He is doing, but they forget to develop their own personal relationship with God. If I'm not growing in my relationship with God, here's what I'm likely to end up with: First, I don't have a clear idea of what I'm receiving and receiving from God at the moment; Secondly, I don't know what God wants me to do, and I'm going to step into that realm with no idea what I'm getting into and what I'm getting out of it. For example, I want to move to a home. I must bring God's promise with me before I can buy another house, what does that mean? I need to know that God has given me this promise that this is His will.

But if I don't have this promise, and I just want to change my house, and I keep begging for it, what's the result of this kind of asking? The result is that I'm stepping into the spiritual realm with my requirements. Do you know sometimes what I want is contrary to what God wants? If God's intention is that you stay in this house, but you want to move, it means that what I want is contrary to what God wants. In fact, you will find that you were fighting against God's will.

That's why believers share to be careful with our prayers since it can turn into a sin. A lot of people don't understand why that is, but when you find out about this situation, you realize that it's quite serious. When I force what I want on God, I'm standing in opposition to God, and I'm fighting against Him. That's why we see that there are always praying, ‘God, I want this. God does this for me. God make this happen.’ In the end, nothing happens. When nothing happens, they get frustrated, and then they say to everyone, "Prayer is useless, I've been praying for three years, and nothing has happened.” Why is that?

This is because we arbitrarily allow ourselves to pray first without allowing ourselves to have a relationship with God. The relationship with God is the key to bringing revelation. It is through an intimate relationship with God that God's revelation is given to us as a strategy, otherwise, we venture into the realm of the unseen with our own ideas. If we do more than God wants us to do in our fleshly capacity, do you think God will answer your prayers? No. Why? Because you are resisting and fighting against God, think about it, if you fight against God, who will win?

Now I realize that this is one of the reasons why prayers are not answered. Another part is that some people have seen God's promises and actively prayed, but they still haven't gotten a breakthrough. I would suggest that you go back to that starting point and ask God again, "Have I heard your will clearly? Do I really know God's will? Did I interpret your message wrongly?” If you find that you are not wrong and that God is still giving you the same revelation, then you will ask, "Why am I still not seeing a breakthrough? Why have I remained in this environment for so many years?” What is the reason for this?

Do you remember the parable Jesus told to his disciples? (Luke 18: 1-8) It was about a judge who didn’t fear people or God and a widow who begged him consistently for help. In the end, he finally yielded, since he was very annoyed with her, he decided to let her have her rights. We need to understand this part, once we understand God's heart in this matter but still don't see a breakthrough, if we can't see a breakthrough, we should go back to square one and start over, to make sure that God's promise is still there. If it feels impossible for a breakthrough, God may have a different purpose; to make you see the lesson in this circumstance. You must realize that God's ultimate purpose for everything that happens to us is to benefit our lives. What is the fruit of life? It is the fruit of the Spirit: patience, kindness, goodness, etc. You must look back and see if your life has borne these fruits in this matter.

If you did not bear the fruit of life He intended for your benefit, God will let that promise to stay there until He lets you learn what you need to learn. The character of patience is very important, and the characters of the fruit of the Spirit is more important in intercession than our gifts. So, we understand that God wants to mold and build up the spiritual fruit in our lives through one thing, through a certain event, and that is God's purpose.

If God is in full control, why do we need to pray and do spiritual warfare? As I have just shared, there is a huge difference between the power of God and that of Satan. If God is in full control, why do we still have to fight and pray? God allows us to go through that process and learn to trust Him through that process.

The other reason is to build character in our lives. Going back to what we were talking about earlier, there are two things that are important: first, we can't live in fear, and second, you must choose an army and join it because you are already on the battlefield. The most important thing is that you must understand what God's role is in your life. Colossians 1:16 “For through him God created everything in heaven and on earth, the seen and the unseen things, including spiritual powers, lords, rulers, and authorities. God created the whole universe through him and for him”.

All creation is created by God and exists to fulfill God's purpose. Often when we come into church, people ask, "Do you know what God's purpose is in your life? Do you know what God's will is in your life?” And we think, ‘Do I have to think about this for so long?’  Do I need to think about the will of a mighty God in my life that I can't see? We need it very much, why?  because we exist because of Him, not because of ourselves. If you don't know what God's will for you is, you'll live a confused life, and you'll live in vain.

You will realize that you can't find the meaning of life, you can't find the purpose, you will feel empty, and the result of the emptiness is to look for things to satisfy your needs. In the end, you will keep looking for love, success, money, women, men... anything starts to come. Therefore, the most important thing is that we must know what role God plays in our lives, and what His purpose for creating us is. We need to ask ourselves a question: ‘Do you know God created you with His purpose?’ If we don't understand, we must go back to God with this question.

We will now begin to talk about some of the things in the field of the invisible, which I am sure very few of you have been taught. The first one is the work of the angels of kindness and goodness. Just now we talked about the two armies, the angelic armies, and the satanic armies. If you don't understand how the armies fight, then of course, you will be the one to get beaten up after you go onto the battlefield. The work of the angels is described in the Bible, so I won't list them in detail. The cherubim, the seraphim, the angels, ministering spirits, you all know about them, right? God will tell them what to do and He sends them out into all the earth. Do you know that there are other places besides the earth? There's the universe, there's the galaxies, there's a lot of galaxies beyond the galaxies! God sends angels to govern everywhere. For example, it was the job of the cherubim to protect the ark of the covenant. Protecting the Tree of Life, remember in the Garden of Eden, when Adam and Eve were cast out, who put up the fiery sword, so nobody could get in.

The cherub protects the great throne, the throne of God, and also witnesses to the holiness and glory of God and protects the things that are constantly moving in holiness. The most important job is to protect the heavenly realm. We can see in the Bible that there is a specific description of the heavens in Paul's vision. Paul said that he had been lifted up to the three-tiered heaven, and divided the layers; the first, the second, and the third, but where does the first-tier end? The first level is within the Milky Way; the second level is the place where Satan, the devil, resides as permitted by God; and the third level, which we don't know at all, is the throne of God. The work of the angels is not only to protect the heavenly realms, but also to worship God in front of Him, and when God calls them to appear on the earth, they will appear, and it is written in the Bible that angels will suddenly appear in the form of human beings.

The book of Judges mentions that cherubim and angels were sent to the earth to instruct and to watch over mankind. Do you remember in the book of Daniel when he spoke of that vision, he mentioned that there was a holy man who was a watchman, and he was sent to the earth? Originally, these were commanded by God to teach and watch over mankind angels in the presence of God, but in the end, they were defiled by their own desires. After being defiled by their own desires, they made a covenant on the Mount of Hermon and then betrayed God. The betrayal of God eventually led to several of the leaders of the angels being imprisoned in the abyss of fire, and some of them were imprisoned in the desert, which is mentioned in the book of Revelation, so there are references to these scenarios in the Bible.

Let's look at Revelation 9:11 [They had as king over them the angel of the Abyss, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon and in Greek is Apollyon (that is, Destroyer)], that passage shows they will be released someday. Originally, angels were sent to earth to help and watch over mankind, but they were defiled by their own lusts. After they were defiled, such as intermarrying with women on earth, some of the angels taught people on earth to make all kinds of crafts and to work with metals; including teaching people how to fight wars, which led to wars breeding on earth. These angels were called fallen angels, after they fell, they all were captured and imprisoned. Some of them were locked in fiery prisons, for example, the angel who intermarried with women; Azazel, was imprisoned in flames, (this information can be found in the non-canonical books.)

The fallen angel: Azazel, who taught men how to fight and make weapons and shields, was thrown into the desert. In the non-canonical books, He was imprisoned in a place called Tartarus. We need to realize that sharing this is not for you to have fellowship with the angels, not in that sense. It is for us to know the bible talks about those things and know the current condition of the fallen angels. But they will be released in the future, after the millennial kingdom.

All angels are involved in the invisible realm of the spirit according to God's will. Additionally, we cannot randomly send angels at our will, we need to get God's permission if we want to receive the help of the angels which are sent by God. We can't just talk to the angels directly. The Catholic Church often describes many encounters and communications between people and angels, and the ‘Arabian Koran’ also describes many conversations between angels and people. As we mentioned earlier, you must first understand God's will, if you do not have God's consent to have a conversation with angels, doing such a thing is the same as witchcraft in God's eyes.

What I said just now is that if you want to talk to the angels, or if you want to be in this process, you must first follow God's will. We can't say what we want or converse with angels without meaning, it is crucial to know who the angel is when it comes. In the previous sermon, we talked about spiritual discernment and testing the spirits. It is important to have a clear concept when we enter this invisible spiritual realm, we must first know God's will, and must clearly understand it. If you are not clear about His will, you are going into the spiritual realm with your own ignorance, and you will have to bear the consequences. Has anyone ever made a mistake in this process? Definitely!

Are there consequences for making a mistake? Yes, there are! Some of the consequences of the wrong action may not be clear at first, but what we want to teach you today is to let you understand: firstly, you cannot send angels at will, it's not something you can do, because you must rely on God's will. Why do we pray? Where do our prayers go? They go to God, and then God distributes His will to the angels according to the needs of the prayers, and then He sends angels to help.

God sends additional angels to help because the personal angel may not have enough power or skill, so He sends additional angels. When he sends an angel, and it is visible, learning how to communicate with the spirit world will prevent you from making mistakes. Be careful, you don't communicate with angels at will unless God’s will is with you. If you know God's will in that moment, you can converse and listen to the angel, just like John the Apostle did.

When we talk about the work of the archangels in accomplishing the kingdom of God on earth according to the will of God, there are two archangels that are often mentioned in the Bible: Gabriel and Michael. When God returns to earth again, Gabriel and Michael will blow the trumpets. In 1 Thessalonians and Book of Revelation, they both talk about the coming day of the Lord. We all know that we cannot send angels at will when engaging in spiritual warfare.

These are two archangels mostly recorded in the Bible, but in fact there are more than these two archangels. God is a Trinity, and we don't have any doubt about that, because we are created in the image of God, we humans are also composed of three parts. We can use this as an analogy to show that the Trinity is actually very similar to the three parts of a human being, the soul, the spirit, and the body. The body consists of the five senses, the eyes, ears, mouth, nose, and tongue, that experience the world around us. The soul is our free will, our thoughts, and our emotions. Our spirit is what we use to communicate and speak to the spiritual world and to God.

Idolaters speak through whom? They speak through evil spirits. We who believe in God speak through whom, through the Holy Spirit, do you see the similarity? We do not speak through ourselves. Then we talk about the enemy, Satan, and his devils. There is only one Satan, but there are many devils. Satan's work is to accuse us, to oppose God's will, as I have just said, and then to provoke us and bring us physical pain and spiritual death.

In Revelation 20:10 [And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night forever and ever.]. In this passage, do you see how many angels were needed to throw Satan into the lake of fire? (Revelations 20:1) One angel is enough. Why is one angel enough, because he carries God's will. Seeing that Satan's power is not as great as he thinks it is, and not as great as we think it is, we must be careful who we follow. If you choose to follow Satan, you will follow him for eternity, and the place he ends up is the lake of fire. What is the lake of fire? It is a lake burning with sulfur, and it is a smoking place.

It is very important for you to choose which camp you decide to join today. The names and characteristics of Satan are found in the Bible. I will talk about Satan's names here: the Opposer, the Serpent, Lucifer, before his fall, the Bright Morning Star, the Evil One, the Dragon, the King of the World, the Principalities, the Accuser of Brethren, the Destroyer of the Worthless, Abaddon, the Father of Lies, and the Prideful One.

In the English translation, for fallen demons/ devils it means destroyer. In comparison, the Chinese word does not fully translate the meaning.

We have just shared that the falling angels are not devils. Fallen angels in fact were cherubim or called archangels before they fell. Their demise is different from demons, since they have been locked in darkness, and will be released in the future. That which is now rampant on the earth is Devil or demon, and Satan is not yet bound, and it will be bound in the Millennial kingdom.

How many channels (pathways) are there that Satan uses? You may know some channels.  I've listed about seven or eight of them here, but I may not have listed them all. First, every heresy, occult religion, or idol worshiping, has a special way of contacting Satan, each false religion or practice has its own special way of doing so. Usually, there must be a high-level demon to guard the connecting channel. This channel allows Satan himself to enter a person and speak or act through that person. I do not encourage you to go and watch it, but if you are not afraid, you can watch some programs on casting out demons, and you will see after that channel is opened up, Satan can enter into that person and then control that person, and Satan can speak and act through that person, and this is one of the channels.

The second channel is the spirit of humans. How can the human spirit be a channel for Satan to enter? The spirit of man has conscience and intuition, and there is also worship, which you may not have heard of, and spiritual worship is something that very few people have heard of.

Consciousness is the ability to recognize right and wrong, and intuition is the ability to know directly whether God's presence is there or not. Some people have this kind of intuition, and some people call it the sixth sense, which is intuition. Worship in the Spirit can also be called commitment, that is, you have a covenant with someone, and you commit yourself, and this part is through the human spirit. John 4:23 “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.”

We know that man became a living being in Genesis 2:7 talks about our spirit as God breathed on us and caused us to come alive with the Spirit, a living man with the Spirit. Here we are talking about the human spirit on another level, you can express it as the human ego.

The spirit of man is the human ego manifested in the whole of his emotions, will, soul, and mind in this dimension, we call it the human ego. That is why it is said in I Corinthians 15:44 “it is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.”

Our physical body is a real entity, we translated it in Mandarin as a body, but in fact, it should be called an entity. The spirit is a spiritual body, it's also a real thing, it's not virtual. In some other religions, you find that they know when their spirit comes out, they know it is an entity, but many of us don't and we just think that the spirit, the soul, and the body are all mixed up together, but they’re not! The scriptures here clearly state that we have a spiritual body as well as a physical body.

In 2 Corinthians 12:2-4, Paul talks about whether in the body or apart from the body he does not know, only God knows. There he talks about two bodies; one is the physical body and the other is the spiritual body. The apostle John in Revelation 4:1-2, also talks about his spirit going up immediately, his spirit was moved by the Holy Spirit, and he immediately saw in his spirit, so the spirit is a real entity. These verses show some of the things we can experience in the spirit, so they are called spiritual experiences. Every time the Bible mentions the Holy Spirit, it uses the word Spirit in English, and it also uses the word spirit when it refers to the human spirit, but there is a difference, one is capitalized and the other is lowercase, so you will have a clearer picture of this part when you look at the English text. In Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to divide soul and spirit, joints, and marrow.” The word "Spirit" is written in lowercase.

We may wonder whether the spirit and the soul can be separated. When the Word of God comes in, it can separate your spirit from your soul. Satan can come in through the human spirit, but how does he get in? By controlling several aspects of the human being: conscience, intuition, and spiritual commitment, the evil spirit can enter through these three parts of the human spirit as a channel. Because our spirit is an entity, it does not mix with the flesh.  The enemy can control our entity; our spirits are real entities. The entity is essentially a true self manifesting itself in the mind, the will, and the emotions.

The third part: Satan can enter our lives through the soul. The soul, as many of us have probably experienced, has several areas: consciousness, subconsciousness, self-awareness, self-reliance, will, mind, emotion, and so on. Do you know how to distinguish these areas? Go back and look at this distinction (we taught this part in the healing conferences), we shared that in detail.  When you serve people, you will encounter this part of the problem, and it would be best if you can distinguish it, because God will pull out that person's problem in a very delicate way. But if you can't differentiate, you just know that the person is being controlled, but you can't figure out which level is being controlled.

By the mighty power of God, it is possible for us to know. We are just briefly telling you that there are about six areas in our souls: consciousness, subconsciousness, and self-awareness, which are related to the control of the spirit; the other three areas are will, mind, and emotion, which are the manifestation of the true self (real self). Especially consciousness and subconsciousness, are related to the control of the spirit. When we read the book of Job in the Bible, it says that sometimes God speaks to us through our dreams, so what part of our soul is involved? It's the subconscious because you're asleep and you're not thinking about anything specifically, but that part of your soul is connected to the Spirit.

The ways in which Satan can enter a person’s life, the first channel, that is, there is a special spiritual pathway when a person participates in mystery religions. The second one, it can also enter through the human spirit, the demon controls the spirit inside you, and this is understood. The third channel, the area of the soul, Satan can enter a person through the control of his/her soul, this is clear.

The fourth channel is through the control of the flesh, which is our body, it includes the brain, the body, and sexual intercourse. Sex is a way for Satan to control a person’s flesh if that person has a sexual relationship with someone who is controlled by the devil. In 1 Thessalonians 5:23 May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Paul teaches us that in these three parts of our being, we must all be cleansed and entrusted to God so that we can be completely blameless. So you have to learn to make a distinction between the spirit, the soul, and the body; they are distinguishable, and all we have to do is to cooperate with the Holy Spirit.

[1Pe 1:22] Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart ("from the heart" is used in some ancient scrolls as "from a clean heart").

As we obey the truth, which is called through the Spirit in the original language, and then purify our hearts (meaning our soul), he uses the capitalized Spirit, which represents the Holy Spirit. Our soul must be led by the Holy Spirit, or rather, within the Holy Spirit, in order for us to be able to cleanse our hearts. Therefore, from these verses, we can see that our own spirit is very weak, and we can easily fall into sin because in 1 John 1:8-9 it says.  “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

We find that in these verses, God does not spare our spirit from falling into sin. The purpose of separating our souls and spirits is to separate us from the influence of the old flesh in our lives, and if we obey God, we will not imagine or come up with anything on our own then we are joining in the deception. Instead, we will be able to wait quietly and patiently for God's word and wait for Him to give us His commands.

We can wait quietly and patiently for God to speak and for Him to give us His commands. What I am saying is that a dangerous thing here is your own spirit. For example, after you have been controlled by Satan or the enemy, as I have just said, the spirit of yourself becomes louder than God's. When your own spirit becomes more dominant than God's, the voice you hear is not necessarily from the Holy Spirit.

This is a matter of deeper life problems because your old flesh is too big, so strong that you only listen to your own voice. When your self-spirit is too strong, you will perceive what you know is the truth, but in fact, it is not true.  A person may often talk to his own spirit, have you ever seen such a person?

In fact, a person who is listening to his self-spirit is under manipulation. The person who talks to his own spirit will not obey the Holy Spirit because his self-spirit is already very strong, and he is often dominated by his own spirit. In today's lesson, we are going to understand the difference between the spirit and the soul. We need to know the spirit, we need to know the soul, and we need to differentiate between the body and the soul so that we can know what to do when we enter the unknown. Adam is the most famous example. Before the fall, Adam was in the Garden of Eden, a place where God was with him, God appeared to him, and he was able to walk side by side with God and talk with Him.

How could Adam communicate so freely with the Spirit? It was through his self-spirit, that he knew that his spirit was an entity, and that is why his spirit could communicate with God so freely. But after the fall, his sel-spirit died, as the Bible says. Then Adam and his descendants could no longer freely surrender their human spirit to the Spirit of God, and naturally, they could not communicate with God as freely as Adam did in the Garden of Eden.

Angels are also spiritual beings. As we all know by now, Satan and his demons are also spiritual beings because they were angels serving God before they betrayed Him. Where is the connection between us and the spiritual world? It is our spirit. Our spirit is a bridge. For example, if this side is the spiritual realm, and that side is the physical realm, what is our bridge?  our spirit is. It's our spirit. Whichever channel or doorway our spirit connects with, that's where you land. That's clear, isn't it? That's why our spirit needs to be controlled by the Lord Jesus. Hebrews 4:12 “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to divide soul and spirit, joints, and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

This is about the power of God in our lives. God can separate our soul, which is our mind, will, and emotions, from our spirit, so that the soul cannot control the spirit. The Word of God comes in and puts this part of us under the complete control of Jesus Christ because He knows that when a man's soul is strong, he can use it to control his own spirit.

The second difference is between the body and the soul. If a man’s spirit is controlled by the soul, some people have their spirit controlled when they have a huge soul. The Spirit of God comes in and fills our spirits so that our souls are subdued to our spirits, and naturally, the body is subdued as well. However, when the soul is greater than the spirit, the soul controls the spirit and then the flesh. This is the same situation that happened to Adam during the fall. Satan uses his soul as a channel to enter a person and controls both the soul and the spirit at the same time, and after the soul and the spirit are controlled by him, of course, the flesh will also be controlled. We often see the enemy in our lives teaching people to control their own souls, through the physical realm as well as the spiritual realm. When your eyes are attracted to this thing, and when you are attracted to it, you will naturally be controlled by it, and when you become addicted to it, you will be controlled.

When your spirit is controlled by it, you can freely talk to the devil through that channel. We have just said that the human spirit is an important bridge to connect the physical realm and the spiritual realm. When our spirit is connected to the enemy, it enters the kingdom of darkness. In some cases, the human spirit can come out of the flesh and enter the kingdom of darkness, and in such cases, it can go out and intimidate and threaten the people of this world. This is not permitted by God because it is an illegal way, a way that does not have the authority. There are many areas in the unseen realm where we must fight, not just one area, but many areas.

We remember in the book of Job, the first time God spoke about Job in front of Satan that he was a righteous man, Satan disdained him, you praised him because you were protecting him, and then the second time God told Satan about Job, and then Satan said that you were protecting him, and of course he loves you. If you remove your protection and see if he still loves you, then God says, "Okay, you can do it. You can hurt him, but you can't take his life. The next thing that Satan did was to take away the things that Job used to sacrifice before God, what were they?  The sheep, cattle, and livestock. What is the second thing he will do? Kill Job's family members, which Job loved, so the second thing he does is to hurt the one you love.

What happened next? The enemy cursed Job through Job's wife: "You should die, your God doesn't care about you, you leave your God.” You can see that Satan's work has three parts in Job. The first one is to take away what you’re offering to God, for example, if you want to offer time to God today, the first thing that Satan takes away is your time. If you say I want to make an offering to God, I want to join the worship team, I want to sing, I want to worship God, the first thing the enemy wants is to make you unable to worship, and it will always have a way to take away the things that you have offered to God, this is the first one.

The second one is to attack whatever you love, you must be careful, you must see what you love in your heart, where your treasure is. If your love is for God, it can't take it away, but if your love is for your child, then it will first make your child sick, and then it will take his life. Depending on what you love, his second tactic is to take away what you love. Thirdly, Satan attacks you through other people. Satan used his wife to curse Job, and Job was attacked for 9 to 10 months before God said, "That's enough, stop it.”. Did God bless Job? Yes, double the number of sheep and cattle after that.

And what was his wife's punishment? She was to have twice as many children. Any of us who are engaged in spiritual warfare must be prepared to fight not only in one area, as we have just seen in Job's experience, but in more than one area. Such a person must check what he is offering in his hand, what he loves in his heart, and always prepare to deal with the enemy. One important thing is to receive direct instruction from the Lord and to learn to listen to God with one's own spirit and heart.

You must know that only the Holy Spirit can teach you, and you must urgently pray and seek such communication. Paul also taught the Corinthians in 1 Corinthians 14:29, "Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said. " Which is a command we are to obey. Do not be hasty in the laying on of hands, and do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure. Do not believe every spirit but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, we have talked about this before. That's all for today.