-Let’s review a few things this morning that we have seen so far:
1. PRAISE TO GOD STILLS THE ENEMY!
-According to Psalm. 8:1-2, Matthew. 21:15,
“PRAISING GOD WITH OUR MOUTHS SHUTS THE
-Understand this about the enemy – Satan:
a. Satan is a powerful influence in our life; but he is not ALL POWERFUL!
b. As a matter of fact:
-Satan really is only an EX-EMPLOYEE of heaven who got fired.
-Satan used to be SONG LEADER in heaven, but God KICKED HIM OUT.
-Satan, as Ezekiel. 28:13 says:
“SATAN WAS ALSO HEAVEN’S INSTRUMENTALIST.”
-Satan, it seemed, was able to sing, play melody, rhythm, and percussion.
-Satan fell from heaven, and we read of that in Isaiah 14:11 NKJV,
“YOUR POMP IS BROUGHT DOWN TO SHEOL, AND THE
SOUND OF YOUR STRINGED INSTRUMENTS.”
-Because Satan then wanted all that PRAISE FOR HIMSELF, instead of God.
-Praise to God UNNERVES DEMONS, it paralyzes Satan.
-Praise will literally SHUT SATAN’S MOUTH, so that HE CAN’T TALK TO YOU anymore.
-All his lies of LUST, DISCOURAGEMENT, HEAVINESS, AND FUTILITY will be stopped.
2. PRAISE TO GOD IS FROM THE MOUTH.
a. Praise to God is the anti-Beelzebub missile.
b. JESUS’ NAME IN PRAISE is the warhead on the rocket that explodes in Satan’s face.
c. The launching pad for all praise is the mouth.
-As a matter of fact:
a. The mouth is the LAUNCHING PAD FOR ALL SPIRITUAL WEAPONS.
b. Whether the ICBM OF PRAISE; the ICBM OF THANKSGIVING; THE ICBM OF TESTIMONY.
c. Whether the ICBM OF PREACHING, the ICBM OF PRAYER.
-All SPIRITUAL WEAPONS against Satan are launched with the mouth.
-We PRAY, PREACH, PRAISE, TESTIFY, AND WORSHIP WITH THE MOUTH.
-THE MOUTH IS THE CENTER OF ALL SPIRITUAL WARFARE IN THE universe.
-So we read in Psalm 8:1-2,
“OUT OF THE MOUTH OF BABES AND SUCKLINGS THOU HAST
-From whom does God receive His perfected and purist praise?
–Billy Graham observed:
“NINETY PERCENT OF ALL THE ENGINEERS AND SCIENTISTS
WHO EVER LIVED ARE ALIVE TODAY.”
-These are the learned, the intellectuals, and the sophisticates.
-It is estimated that over 172,000 new books are published in the United States each year.
-Professors, authors, engineers, technologists abound.
-But where God receives His truest praise is from the CHILDLIKE, the SIMPLEST, the UNLEARNED, those that are considered NAÏVE.
-There is nothing more beautiful than the young neighbor boy who we recently took to Sunday School, and who on the way home began to sing in the backseat what he had learned that morning in Sunday School:
“MARY DON’T YOU KNOW THAT YOUR BABY BOY WILL
ONE DAY WALK ON WATER.”
-In that moment PRAISE WAS PERFECTED as tears rolled down my cheeks. The precious boy comes from an unbelieving home. We thank God for that perfected moment of praise in a precious child. It was powerful! Like nothing I have ever heard!
a. Praise is not MEDITATION; it is something THAT IS HEARD!
b. Praise is ARTICULATED SOUND AND CONVICTION! It is audible BRAGGING ON JESUS!
c. Praise is launched from the mouth; it is a SPIRITUAL LAW; as unbreakable as LAWS OF PHYSICS.
d. David did not just compose psalms of praise, HE SANG THEM.
-The mouth can launch the ENEMIES’ weapons as well. When we GOSSIP, BACKBITE, CRITICIZE, JUDGE, we launch the devil’s weapons with our mouths.
-When we PRAISE, THANK, COMPLIMENT, and TESTIFY, we are launching the Lord’s weapons.
-Either way, the mouth is the center of all SPIRITUAL WARFARE, in the universe, and they either “BUILD UP” or “TEAR DOWN!”
-The only way to live our life is with THANKSGIVING AND PRAISE, or the devil will TAKE HOLD OF OUR MINDS AND DEFEAT US.
I. WHAT ABOUT THE GOOD SPIRITS – THE ANGELS?!
-It is impossible to read the Bible:
1. Without being impressed by a GLORIOUS FACT!
2. That the angels of God have A HUGE PART IN THIS BUSINESS OF PRAISE!
3. And, that the angels of God have A MASSIVE ROLE IN SPIRITUAL WARFARE!
-Be assured of this this morning:
1. That the angels of God are CONSTANTLY DOING BATTLE on behalf of God’s children!
2. I read those well-known words in Psalm. 34:7,
“THE ANGEL OF THE LORD ENCAMPETH ABOUT THEM THAT
FEAR GOD, AND DELIVERETH THEM.”
-Incredibly glorious and comforting reality, this truth!
-On every side of every God-fearing man and woman of God this morning, there are angels encamped around you to SERVE, DEFEND, PROTECT.
-We little know how many deliverances we OWE TO THESE UNSEEN BATTLERS.
4. Listen now:
-Many people have the concept of God’s angels that they sit around playing harps and sing praises to God.
-But if that is your primary concept of the Heavenly Hosts, it is woefully inadequate.
-Heaven’s angels, who are closest to God in perfection, are all flame and agility for the execution of God’s commands about the government of the world, and the deliverance of sinners and the protection of the saints.
“IT IS NOT THE PRIME POSTURE OF THE ANGELS TO SIT AND PLAY HARPS,
BUT INSTEAD, TO BE ON THE WING TO DO BATTLE AGAINST THE
FORCES OF HELL.”
-Without them, evangelism would be a bust! Without them, no one would be saved and stay saved. Satan and his demons would have the last word, and people would remain imprisoned and in demonic bondage forever.
-They are God’s CHARIOTED ARMIES, as we read in Psalm 68:17 KJV,
“The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands
of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai,
in the holy place.”
-Oh yes, they are good companions for our children as they ride their bikes, as they play by the creek side, and build little shelters to hide in. But far more, they spiritually and morally protect our lives and homes which otherwise would succumb to the oppressive and destructive forces of hell.
EXAMPLE OF THIS WONDERFUL CERTAINTY:
1. There is a beautiful example of this in II Kings 6.
2. FIRST OF ALL THE SETTING FOR IT:
-BENHADAD, the King of Syria, was WARRING AGAINST ISRAEL and laying strategy against them.
-The Syrian king would get together IN HIS PRIVATE CHAMBERS with his servants and make war plans.
-FUNNY THING THOUGH:
a. Every time they did that, Syria’s plans were FLOPS; again and again they FAILED.
b. BENHADAD began to think there was a traitor in their midst, a PRO-ISRAEL INFORMANT.
c. One can hear him gathered with these fellas in his bed room, in a private conference.
“SHHHHH, WE”LL TAKE THE COMMANDOS, AND WE”LL GO AROUND
THE BACK WAY, AND WE’LL SNEAK IN THE EASTERN GATE.”
-BUT WHEN HE DID THAT:
a. HEAVEN’S INTELLIGENCE AGENCY, the “HIA” tells Elisha! God’s prophet in Israel.
b. God says:
“SYRIA IS COMING WITH COMMANDOS, THEY ARE GOING AROUND
THE BACK WAY AND THEY WILL COME, TRYING TO SNEAK IN
THE EASTERN GATE.”
c. So Syria commandos came, Israel PULVERIZED THEM, BENHADAD pulling his hair out.
d. For we read in II Kings 6:12,
“THAT EVERYTHING THE SYRIAN KING WAS PLANNING AND TALKING
ABOUT IN HIS PRIVATE BEDROOM WITH HIS SERVANTS ABOUT
STRATEGY, MILES AWAY GOD TOLD ELISHA, ELISHA TOLD
THE KING OF ISRAEL.”
a. God WILL, DOES, IS PROTECTING His people from Satan’s devices!
b. The Holy Spirit does His secret agent work, tells the prophets of God – leadership.
c. And the PLANS OF SATAN are exposed beforehand, and the PEOPLE OF GOD ARE PROTECTED.
SECOND, NOW THE REAL POINT THIS MORNING:
-The king of Syria, Benhadad, didn’t give up easily.
-BENHADAD invaded DOTHAN WHERE ELISHA WAS STAYING:
a. When Elisha’s servant got up ONE MORNING!
b. He saw the invading army of Benhadad the king, that had come that night.
c. He was very FEARFUL AND UPSET and said in II Kings 6:15,
“ALAS, MY MASTER, HOW SHALL WE DO?”
d. Elisha the prophet of God said in response to his fear-filled servant in II Kings 6:16,
“FEAR NOT, FOR THEY THAT BE WITH US ARE MORE THAN
THEY THAT BE WITH THEM.”
-The Hebrew word for PROPHET is NIBBI, which comes from the Hebrew verb NIBBA, which means to “MAKE AN ANNOUNCEMENT” based on Divine Revelation.
-PROPHETS – NIBBIS make profound announcements to people and their leaders ON BEHALF OF GOD.
-Sometimes these announcements are words of ENCOURGAGEMENT, and very frequently they are WARNINGS AND DIRE PREDICTIONS OF DIVINE JUDGMENT, calling the people to turn from their wicked ways or else.
-God’s prophets are not Mickey Mouse figures dealing in fantasies and trivialities, but are mighty men of God who deeply affect the affairs of nations and of men. They more often than not must stand alone and are seldom popular because of the profundity and unpopularity of their prophecies.
“THE PROPHETS AND PROPHECIES OF GOD ARE SO POWERFUL AND HISTORY-
CHANGING, THAT NO DECISION CAN BE MADE WITHOUT TAKING INTO
ACCOUNT NOT JUST THE WORLD AS IT IS, BUT THE WORLD AS
THE PROPHETS SAY IT WILL BE.”
And through it all, God’s people can always know:
“THAT THE ANGELS THAT ARE WITH US ARE FAR MORE THAN
THE DEMONIC FORCES THAT ARE AGAINST US.”
e. Elisha then prayed for his servant and said in II Kings 6:17,
“LORD I PRAY THEE, OPEN HIS EYES THAT HE MAY SEE.”
-And the Lord did open his eyes.
-Showed him in the Spirit that mountains were full of ANGELS of the Lord.
-And they were being carried by HORSE-DRAWN CHARIOTS OF FIRE.
-That is “THE LORD’S ARMIES”, involved in SPIRITUAL WARFARE for God’s people.
-Remember this glorious reality of Elisha at DOTHAN. THIS IS YOUR LIFE AND MINE.
-There were MORE ANGELS OF God with Israel than there were EVIL ANGELS AND INVADING SYRIANS.
-The mountains were full of the armies of God; chariots of fire, horses, Heavenly hosts.
-Reminds me of what David said in Psalm. 35:5 about his enemies:
“LET THEM BE AS CHAFF BEFORE THE WIND, AND LET THE
ANGEL OF THE LORD CHASE THEM.”
-We must be rooted in these truths more than ever before:
a. I am seeing around me a spirit of fatalism gripping not only unbelievers, but the souls of believers as well.
b. The young bride-to-be who does not want to bring children into a world that is so uncertain and even foreboding.
c. In the end times of fear – prophets, cults, and the occult are recruiting and deceiving people all over the world with untruth and false hopes. It is amazing to see how many people, even the well-educated, can be so easily conned.
d. It reminds us of the suicidal cult a few years ago known as HEAVEN’S GATE, whose members committed suicide mind you, in the hope that they would ride away via the HALE-BOPP COMET.
d. Rather, in light of the reality OF THE HEAVENLY FORCES SENT TO PROTECT US, I like the quote of calmness and confidence from Saint Francis who said in response to a question asked of him:
“WHAT WOULD YOU DO IF YOU KNEW THAT JESUS WAS
COMING BACK TODAY.” He said, “I’D JUST KEEP ON
HOEING MY GARDEN.”
e. I really get that!
II. BUT WHAT ACTIVATES THE HEAVENLY HOSTS?
-Well, first of all, THE COMMAND OF God does, not the commands of men!
-I read about the angels of God in Psalm 103:20-21,
“BLESS THE LORD, YE HIS ANGELS, THAT EXCEL IN STRENGTH,
THAT DO HIS COMMANDMENTS, HEARKENING UNTO THE
VOICE OF HIS WORD.”
“BLESS YE THE LORD, ALL YE HIS HOSTS, YE MINISTERS OF HIS,
THAT DO HIS PLEASURE.”
-And they never hesitate, nor do they ever disobey the direct order of their Creator as we do at times. Nor do they negotiate with the enemies of darkness, rather, they clobber them as if they were the most fragile of beings.
-So, they obey God; but what motivates God to command them to do battle on our behalf?
LET ME TELL YOU A TRUE STORY:
1. In II Chronicles 20, we are told of the invasion of Israel by THREE ARMIES – AMMON, MOAB, AND SEIR.
2. Jehoshaphat was the King of Israel at the time:
-When he was informed of the invasion by these NATIONS.
-The Bible tells us first of all THAT JEHOSHAPHAT FEARED.
-Then, he began SEEKING THE LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all of Judah.
-Then, he PRAYED a great prayer before all the people.
-Then, at the end of HIS PRAYER:
a. The spirit of prophecy came upon a man named Jahazeel, a Levite.
b. His prophetic word OUTLINED THE BATTLE plan that God had for the next day.
3. THE BATTLE PLAN:
-Was to have the Levites lead the army of Israel into battle.
-The Levites were the PROFESSIONAL MUSICIANS AND PRAISERS OF THE TEMPLE.
-It was the “Levite Praisers” that the Lord wanted marching in front of Israel’s armies.
a. You understand the principles of SPIRITUAL WARFARE!
b. Then, it is easier to understand the RESULTS OF THIS EVENT!
c. THE LEVITES advanced before the ARMIES OF ISRAEL, PRAISING AND WORSHIPING THE LORD WITH SONGS.
a. When GOD NEEDS TO FIGHT A BATTLE, THIS IS THE WAY GOD FIGHTS.
b. God is not interested in the “MIGHT OF THE ENEMY.”
c. God is not interested in how “MUCH FIRE POWER THEY HAVE.”
d. God deals in the AREA OF SPIRITUAL WARFARE WITH SPIRITUAL WEAPONS.
e. We must realize the incredible power the angels of God have.
-True, men indeed raise armies and rout an enemy or demolish a city or country.
-But get this, namely, in the Bible we find that we find a destroying angel of God in ONE NIGHT SLAYING 185,000 men (II Kings 19:35). So great is the power of these spiritual beings.
-We tend to think in terms of material weapons and warriors. But these angelic beings, being free from any material mixture, are totally free from the clogs and encumbrances of matter. Guns jam but angels don’t. They are all pure and powerful action, and they operate at a rate of force and speed that defy out conceptions.
-There are no created or manufactured forces in the universe close to their power. The nuclear age began in the 1940s. That is when scientists learned how to release the energy that is stored within atoms. As with many things in nature, this discovery brought forth a duality of uses:
“NUCLEAR ENERGY CAN BE USED TO PRODUCE UNPARALLELED WEAPONS OF
MASS DESTRUCTION, OR IT CAN BE USED TO PROVIDE RELATIVELY
-China possesses 400 nuclear warheads. France has 348 nuclear warheads, and Israel and Britain about 200 nuclear warheads. The United States and Russia are the world’s largest nuclear nations. These two countries possess close to 93% of the world’s atomic weapons.
But hear me and get this deep into you:
“EVERY NUCLEAR WARHEAD AND ATOMIC BOMB ARE NOTHING BUT
FIRECRACKERS COMPARED TO THE ANGELIC POWERS OF
HEAVEN WHICH ARE INNUMERABLE AND INCOMPARABLE.”
a. The rocket launched by the children of Israel WAS PRAISE AND WORSHIP.
b. With the enemy breathing down their neck, they launched the ROCKET OF PRAISE.
c. The “WARHEAD” on the Rocket was “THE NAME OF THE LORD”:
-They went out before the army, we are told.
-And they sang in II Chronicles 20:21,
“PRAISE THE LORD, FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOREVER.”
-They continued to UPLIFT THE NAME OF THE LORD IN PRAISE.
-As soon as they began to OPEN THEIR LAUNCHING PADS, their mouths in praise.
-The LORD GOD SET AMBUSHMENTS against THE THREE ENEMY ARMIES.
-WHAT WERE THE AMBUSHMENTS?:
a. Same ambushments that stopped Syria and king Benhadad in Elisha’s day.
b. AMBUSHMENTS OF THE ANGELS OF GOD:
-They came EXACTLY AT THE TIME that children of God began to sing.
-Fact is, it was PRAISE THAT LOOSED ANGELS to DO BATTLE FOR GOD’S PEOPLE.
c. But how?:
–II Chronicles 20 tells us that somehow,
“THE ENEMY DESTROYED EACH OTHER.”
-Very possible that ANGELS OF GOD whispered in the enemy armies’ ears.
-They sowed seeds of doubt and confusion in the minds of Satan’s children.
-They then TURNED ON EACH OTHER, as OPPONENTS of God’s people will often do.
-IT IS SENSIBLE TO BELIEVE THIS:
-If the devil’s angels can sow thoughts of pride, bondage, hate, fear in our minds.
-Then, the Lord’s angels can sow seeds of CONFUSION AND SUSPICION IN THE MINDS OF THE DEVIL’S CHILDREN.
BUT THE POINT IS:
-I don’t think this church or any other church really understands this.
-Namely, the incredible POTENTIAL “PRAISE” HAS IN SPIRITUAL WARFARE.
-Then, the angels of God are loosed to do exploits for the church.
-And, what THEY WANT TO DO FOR US IS OVERWHELMING.
III. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR US?
-God is not building a defeated church, we are GOING TO WIN THE BATTLE.
-The church of Jesus Christ will win the battle.
-MANY NEED SUCH A MIRACLE IN THEIR LIVES AND FAMILIES HERE TODAY.
1. WIVES here need a miracle for their husbands, their marriages:
-Husbands CHAINED/BOUND in prison of drugs, deception, death.
-Husbands chained/bound in prison of lust, adultery, and the devil’s lies.
-Wives, you are now BEING CHAINED BY DESPAIR, DOUBT, DISCOURAGEMENT.
-Wives, the EDGE IS BEING TAKEN OFF YOUR COMMITMENT TO CHRIST. (Bound in prisons of hopelessness and futility)
2. CHRISTIANS here need a MIRACLE FOR THEIR HABITUATED LIVES:
-You are chained by the flesh, you flat out eat too much.
-Others are chained by tobacco, alcohol, cigarettes, television.
-Your house smells like a BURNED TIRE, so do your clothes! Blue Haze!
-You’ve got the rattle of death in your lungs, and you are slowly killing yourself.
-Your life is a prison, and you’ve even stopped TRYING TO BREAK FREE.
3. YOUNG CHRISTIANS HERE already need a miracle of deliverance.
-You started out even recently TURNED ON, TOTALLY COMMITTED.
-You started out SWEET-SPIRITED, JOY-FILLED, AND GENUINELY OPTIMISTIC!
-You were going to be A COMMITTED DISCIPLE AND SOUL-WINNER:
a. But already the FLAWS AND NEGATIVISM AND BAD ATTITUDES of others have soured your spirit.
b. Satan has IMPRISONED YOU WITH DISILLUSIONMENT AND DISCOURAGEMENT.
c. The FREE SPONTANEOUS JOY has been bound; already losing your first love!
4. OTHER CHURCH GOERS:
-You have fallen INTO THE DEVIL’S TRAP OF FEELING SORRY FOR YOURSELF.
-You are bound in self-pity:
a. Someone has DISAPPOINTED YOU; let you down, didn’t MEASURE UP.
b. Perhaps a friend, a pastor, a colleague, a dream or ideal.
c. Now you’re trapped in BITTERNESS and SELF-PITY:
-And because of that, YOU HAVE WITHDRAWN YOUR SPIRIT.
-You have WITHDRAWN YOUR LIFE FROM CHRIST AND HIS CHURCH.
5. IN OUR SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES ACROSS THE LAND:
-Students are under attack from the forces of darkness.
-They are now being educated to be and think like pagans.
a. In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control, and from 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.
b. In 1911, Turkey established gun control, and from 1915 to 1917, 15 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
c. In 1938, Germany established gun control and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 13 million Jews and others, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
d. In 1935, China established gun control, and from 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
e. In 1970, Uganda established gun control, and from 1971 to 1079, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
f. In 1963 the Supreme Court outlawed prayer in America’s public schools, and in 1980, the display of the Ten Commandments was rendered unconstitutional. Since those devilish laws were passed, and the spiritual and moral weapons were taken from us, the rate of premarital sex has steadily climbed, as has the rate of sexually transmitted diseases. Teenage pregnancies and teen births have skyrocketed. Rape, aggravated assault, and murder amongst teens have shot through the roof. The rates of adultery, divorce, cohabitation, and domestic abuse have become pandemic.
“THE FIRST EVIDENCES OF TYRANTS AND TYRANNY IS THE TAKING AWAY
OF THE PHYSICAL AND SPIRITUAL WEAPONS OF DEFENSE FROM
THE PEOPLE – ALWAYS!”
“WHEN PRAYER, PRAISE, THANKS-TO-GOD CONTROL WAS INSITUTED
IN AMERICA, STUDENTS IN AMERICA’S SCHOOLS WERE LEFT
SPIRITUALLY AND MORALLY DEFENSELESS.”
“SATAN’S MISSILES WTH THE WARHEADS OF EVOLUTION, SECULAR HUMANISM,
MORAL RELATIVISM, AND EVEN ISLAM ARE EXPLODING DAY AFTER DAY IN
THE MINDS OF AMERICA’S YOUTH IN AMERICA’S SCHOOLS. MILLIONS OF
STUDENTS WHO ARE UNABLE TO DEFEND THEMSELVES ARE BEING
EXTERMINATED SPIRITUALLY AND MORALLY EVERY SINGLE DAY.”
IV. TURNING THE TIDE OF BATTLE
-Whatever the devil throws at us:
a. Whether negativism, relativism, humanism, rebellion, selfishness, whatever devices he shoots at us.
b. God’s PEOPLE WILL AND MUST STAND AND PRAISE JESUS THANK JESUS:
–God’s children, young and old, must dominate all of their turf with aggressive prayer and praise, no matter the cost.
-Satan will flee, demons will flee, negative talking and works will flee.
-And in the meantime:
“IT WILL BRING SIGHT TO THE BLIND, HEARING TO THE DEAF, DELIVERANCE
TO THE FEARFUL, FAITH TO THE DOUBTER, AND LIFE TO THOSE
DEAD IN SIN.”
-I read in Luke 10:19,
“BEHOLD, I GIVE UNTO YOU POWER TO TREAD ON SERPENTS
I. The devil has been working on us too much and too long.
2. Now, we are going to begin to walk in Him and mean it.
3. We have been GIVEN THE AUTHORITY TO TREAD ON HIM.
4. AS WE BEGIN TO SING AND PRAISE AND BLESS AND THANK AS A WAY OF LIFE:
“THE LORD WILL SET AMBUSHMENTS AGAINST SATANIC FORCES
THAT SHALL BE ANNIHILATED.”
ILLUSTRATION FROM THE OTHER SIDE:
-Whether it is because you lived it, or because you have seen plenty documentation of it, the odds are that many of you still here today know what the term BEATLEMANIA means. Throughout much of the 1960s this phenomenon swept over people wherever JOHN, PAUL, RINGO, AND GEORGE went. The BEATLES were the 20th century’s most amazing secular musical and pop-culture phenomenon. Even learned scholars and psychologists have rendered serious analysis of just why it was that so many people became engulfed in hysteria wherever these four lads from Liverpool made a singing concert appearence.
–BEATLEMANIA went well beyond simply lining up early to buy new records or to purchase concert tickets. Instead history remembers the images of girls screaming and crying at the top of their lungs, girls tearing their clothes off, concert workers carrying out the girls who had literally fainted dead away, crowds chasing limousines down the street, and long lines of police officers linking arms to form a human barrier to hold back the surging throngs.
–Many of us know all about that. But there was something else that happened as part of BEATLEMANIA. Apparently there were parents over the years who brought their crippled and sick children to BEATLE’S CONCERTS, hoping against hope that during the singing concert, the FAB FOUR had so much power that would be unleashed so as to be able to heal their children’s ailments.
-So too, the powers of darkness require praise if the dark spirits are to unleash their powers. SATAN’S SUBSTITUTES ABOUND in the world to take the place of PRAISE TO ALMIGHTY GOD. The difference is this:
“IN SATAN’S WORSHIP SERVICES, THE WORSHIPERS TAKE THEIR CLOTHES
OFF IN LEWD ACTS OF UNRIGHTEOUSNESS, WHILE IN GOD’S WORSHIP
SERVICES, THE WORSHIPERS ARE SET FREE FROM SIN AND CLOTHED
IN THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF JESUS CHRIST.”
V. DO YOU NEED A MIRACLE IN YOUR LIFE?
-I know many here do:
1. Believe the Word of the Lord this morning.
2. Believe God in Psalm 50:23 what He says about praise:
“WHOSO OFFERETH PRAISE GLORIFIETH ME, AND TO HIM THAT ORDERETH
HIS CONVERSATION ARIGHT, WILL I SHEW THE SALVATION OF GOD.”
-Praisers will be shown the salvation of God.
-That term in the 0.T. and in the N.T., refers to more than just SALVATION OF THE SOUL.
-It refers to deliverance from Satan’s attacks, bondages, chains, and prisons.
-God will come to A PRAISING PEOPLE, AND SHOW HIS SALVATION, SET THEM and OTHERS FREE.
-SOME OF YOU HERE TODAY:
-Since you were born again; others, more recently after years of COMMITMENT TO CHRIST.
-You are BOUND BY HALF-HEARTEDNESS; can’t go all way for Jesus; still in prisons of self.
a. You know it’s church time, and yet it is an effort to come! Bound by spiritual laziness!
b. You really want YOUR CAKE AND EAT IT TOO! It’s a prison of selfishness.
c. You are living on the OUTSIDE OF WHAT’S REALLY HAPPENING! Bound to spectatorism!
d. For spectatorism is far less strenuous than playing the real game!
SOMEONE HERE TODAY:
-Is and has recently been bound by something you DON’T UNDERSTAND.
-It is ERODING YOUR JOY IN THE LORD; your commitment to your local church.
-You can’t figure out what it is, but it’s affecting your family as well:
a. It is HAMPERING YOUR PRAYING FOR THEM, BECAUSE OF INCONSISTENT WITNESS.
b. It is this:
-You resent authority; your heart knows better.
-But, YOU CAN’T GET IT SETTLED IN YOUR HEAD.
-You are bound in this thing, and your zeal has been zapped.
-MANY NEED MIRACLES OF DELIVERANCE THIS MORNING:
1. Remember the story of Paul and Silas in their prison.
2. Think of it:
-Imagine what they could have been saying to God that night.
-They could have complained, after all, being imprisoned for proclaiming the gospel.
-They could have listed all their problems; they could have asked Jesus for different employment.
-But instead, THEY PRAYED AND SANG PRAISES to God says Acts 16:26!
3. Then we read in Acts 16:26,
“AND SUDDENLY THERE WAS A GREAT EARTHQUAKE, SO THAT THE
FOUNDATIONS OF THE PRISON SHOOK; AND IMMEDIATELY ALL
THE DOORS WERE OPENED, AND EVERYONE’S BANDS
-Suddenly there was an earthquake.
-I believe that THEIR PRAISE TO GOD released the angels of God.
-God then gave them the freedom to do what they needed to do.
-And, that was to SHAKE THE FOUNDATIONS AND WALLS OF THE PRISON.
a. Imagine the angels, perhaps 4 of God’s best!
b. And they are standing around the prison; one at each corner.
c. SHAKING THE DAYLIGHTS OUT OF THE PRISON! (possible/ highly probable)
ALL OF US NEED TO GET A HOLD OF THIS:
I mean, in Acts 12, Herod killed James; the brother of John, with a sword!
-Then he put Peter in prison, and we read:
“PRAYER WAS MADE WITHOUT CEASING OF THE CHURCH
UNTO GOD FOR PETER.”
-Then what happened? The angels of the Lord called TO PETER IN THE PRISON, HIT HIM A WHACK ON THE SIDE, really ROCKED THE BROTHER and THE CHAINS FELL OFF!
-Peter was then delivered from the prison. Hear it:
“IT SHOWS THE CONNECTION BETWEEN THE PRAYERS AND PRAISES
OF GOD’S PEOPLE, AND THE WARFARE OF ANGELS FOR US.”
1. God wants you to STAND IN PRAISE AND WORSHIP today and all your days.
2. It will release the angels of God with their MIGHTY MIRACLE-WORKING POWER.
3. They will FREE you from those things that bind you.
4. What God and His hosts want to do for us is OVERWHELMING! Amen!