Is. 9: 6-7 Government = authority to rule
The kingdom of God is the rule of God
The increase of God’s government always brings peace and order.
God is a God of order, not confusion (1Cor. 14:33, 40)
God’s government proceeds out of love, out of the anointing
When it is in operation, it brings righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost (Rom. 14:17)
God’s government is meant to work in every area of life: personal life, marriage and the family, and church
Authority = the right to exercise power; the power of rule or government; the lawful right to enforce obedience; power.
There are four realms of Authority where believers must learn to function
1. We must take authority over our own flesh, our spirit by the Holy Spirit ruling every thought, purpose and action to the glory of God
2. We must submit to God’s Authority, the Lordship of Jesus, the Word of God, and to the Holy Spirit
3. We must submit to the delegated or constituted authority – Leaders, employers, husband/wife, government, etc.
4. Submit to one another out of respect, reverence, (fear) or love for God –
Eph. 5:21; 1 Pet. 5:5-6
Rom 13:1-7 — Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor. (NKJ)
Authority is given by God to the Church to establish His kingdom on earth, and to function in His place, doing His works, ruling over the devil.
Matt.29:18, Luke 10:19-20; Ps. 91:13; Mark 16:18; Rom. 16:20; Rev. 10-11
Authority can be neutralized = to counter balance the effect of so as to render ineffective.
Discussion Point: How is our authority neutralized? Authority is neutralized when one yields to the flesh rather than yield to the spirit, gives way to sin, or gives the devil access in our lives.
When there is a problem or conflict in any situation, within yourself, your marriage, your job, your church, you must ask yourself, “What is the highest authority I must submit to?” Then, if you will yield yourself to the rule of God, the higher authority is imposed over you, and the government of God (the rule of Jesus) will produce righteousness, peace and joy in and by the Holy Ghost in your life. God will be glorified.
7 Levels of Authority
1. Sovereign Authority
This is imperial authority. The authority that is never questioned, it is always obeyed, it is unchallenged and unquestioned. God has placed Himself under authority to His Word. He holds Himself under subjection to His Word and the laws He has set in motion.
Only God Himself (the Godhead) has this authority.
2. Voracious Authority – the authority of truth
John 17:17 – God’s Word is truth
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth
Jesus Himself is truth – “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” John 14:6
The expression of Jesus in sovereign authority is in the written Word, the Bible
Jesus is the Living Word, The Bible, the written Word, is the authority of Truth
Truth by itself carries authority – certain things carry authority simply because they are true.
If someone lies about you, it does not matter. When the truth comes out, authority will reign. When the truth is known, everything is exonerated.
3. The Authority of Your Conscience
Conscience is the ability to tell the difference between right and wrong. For a born again believer, the conscience is the voice of your spirit, which is indwelt by the Spirit of God.
The authority of you conscience has significant but limited authority in the believer’s life.
Where Scripture is silent or unclear, your conscience does have authority. Where Scripture speaks specifically or is clear about something (chapter and verse), or reveals the character and nature of God, or a law or principle, then your conscience does not have authority and we must submit to the higher authority.
Where Scripture is silent or unclear, you live by the authority of your conscience, not someone else’s!
For example, many believers have very strong opinions about music. There is much debate and many differences of what kind of music an individual or a church deems is acceptable to the Lord. We argue about the appearance of an individual or a group, the kinds of instruments used, the style of music, the beat, etc., yet the Bible is silent concerning these things. What the Bible states very clearly is that no corrupt communication should come out of our mouth, but only that which is pure and edifying. So, if a person listens to a Reggae or a rock style of music, but the lyrics are good, and their conscience is clear before God, then I have no right to judge that person because my conscience or preference is different. And, because my preference in music is different, or because God may have dealt with me about this issue and my conscience before God, dictates that I do not listen to this type of music, they should not judge me. This is between and individual and their personal relationship with God. If we understand this principle of authority and live by it, then we will experience peace with God, peace in our relationships with one another, and peace in our own heart and mind. The government of God is in manifestation and God is glorified in us and through us!
The Principle of Conscience for loves sake: Romans chapter 14
1. Has the Holy Spirit dealt with me about it?
2. Will what I do offend a weaker brother and possibly cause him to sin or
stumble in his faith toward God?
In any of these three levels we have discussed so far, no human being can make you violate any of these three levels of authority. They do not have the authority to do so. These levels are ranked in order of importance. Again, in any circumstance of life or any decision we make, we must ask ourselves, “What is the highest level of authority I must submit to in this situation, in order to have the government of God ruling my life?” Then we submit to that authority.
The next four levels of authority are not ranked in order. They vary depending on the situation.
4. Stipulated Authority
This is the authority of legal agreement or contract.
Example: Gen. 29:18-19 – Laban and Jacob entered an agreement, a legal binding contract. When you enter into a contract, for example with a loan officer at the bank for a loan for a car, you are giving a certain amount of authority to the bank. If the terms of the contract are not met, then the bank has authority to either take back the car or pursue legal action for the balance of the contract. They have a right to receive the collateral, but they do not have right to any of your other property.
5. The Authority of Custom or Culture
Example: Gen. 29:20-26 – Laban broke the agreement he had made with Jacob because the authority of custom (vs. 26, the custom of that day was that the oldest daughter married before the younger). Jacob submitted to the authority of custom. In this case, the law of culture superceded the legal contract between Jacob and Laban.
6. Delegated Authority
Delegate = to entrust to another; to appoint as one’s delegate; to represent another
Gen. 1:26-30; 2:15-17 – God the Supreme Authority, gave authority to man, He delegated this authority to him to tend the garden, to have dominion over all creation.
Authority is delegated from a person with more authority.
You are either in authority or under authority in many different aspects of life. Roles change. There are times you are in authority and times you are under authority.
For example: In my life, God has called me to be a pastor. He delegated authority to me to function in this role. As I function in the church as the senior pastor, my husband comes under my pastoral authority. In matters pertaining to the church I have both the authority and the responsibility to have the final say. My son (who is male, and also functions as the church pastor) submits to my authority as the senior pastor. When my husband and I leave the church and go home, our roles change. In our home, I am not the pastor or head. I am the wife who submits to the head of the union, her husband. When we understand these roles and functions and willingly submit to one another in the fear of God, there is peace, security and divine order.
With authority comes responsibility. When your responsibility ends, your authority ends.
If you try to take authority for something you are not responsible for, trouble ensues.
Your authority never extends beyond your responsibility.
If you do not have the responsibility for something, you have no authority. If you have not been given the authority, then you have no responsibility.
The Apostle Paul understood this principle, 2 Cor. 10:8-16, especially in verses 8 & 13
We must understand the limits and borders of our authority, naturally as well as spiritually. If we step outside the borders or the sphere of authority (in any area of life), we give access to the enemy and bring judgment on ourselves. God does not bring these things upon us. We open the door, and remove ourselves from God’s divine protection, and allow the devil to bring these things into our life. The “judgment” comes in the form of strife, division, sickness, divorce, loss of job or position, premature death, etc. Romans 13:1-7
It indicates that our flesh is ruling rather than the Spirit of God.
7. Functional Authority
This is the authority to function because of abilities that come by birth, training or impartation by God. This type of authority is not determined by gender, age, relationship roles like a husband or wife, it is determined by the function one has.
For example: In a marriage relationship, the husband is head of the home. If the wife can change the oil in the car and is better at balancing their financial accounts, it does not diminish the husband’s authority as head of the home, if the wife functions in these areas. In fact, it will make the power in the home more effective, because there is no confusion because each is fulfilling their roles and functions that come by training, birth (natural talent or abilities), or the gifts one is given when they become born-again (motivational gifts or divine graces).
In order to understand authority, we must rightly understand the doctrine and discipline of submission. The degree in which we submit to God’s authority, is the degree of His power (dunamis) that will operate in our lives.
Authority is the right to rule –
We are to rule in the midst of our enemies – both internal (strongholds in our soul, weaknesses of the flesh, carnal nature, sin) and external enemies (thoughts Satan brings against the mind, his attacks, and men controlled by Satan and flesh who oppose God and/or us)
Ps 110:2 — The LORD shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of Your enemies! (NKJ)
Ps 110:1-3 – A Messianic Psalm
1 The LORD said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” (In the new covenant, we are already seated with Him in heavenly places, far above, all principality, power, might and dominion Eph. 1:20-23 & 2:6.)
2 The LORD shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of Your enemies! Rule = to tread down, to have dominion, prevail against, reign,
3 Your people shall be volunteers in the day of Your power; in the beauties of holiness, from the womb of the morning, you have the dew of Your youth. (NKJ)
20 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,
21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:
22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,
23 Which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all. (KJV)
6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
Rule in the midst of your enemies — There are always going to be attacks that wage war against your soul. There were against Jesus.
Example: Luke 4:16-30
28 So all those in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath,
29 and rose up and thrust Him out of the city; and they led Him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw Him down over the cliff.
30 Then passing through the midst of them, He went His way. (NKJ)
John 8:48-59 – (esp. vs. 59) The claim of Jesus to be eternal convinced the Jews He was blaspheming – a sin punishable by stoning. Jesus hid Himself and passed through the midst of them.
48 Then the Jews answered and said to Him, “Do we not say rightly that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?”
49 Jesus answered, “I do not have a demon; but I honor My Father, and you dishonor Me.
50 “And I do not seek My own glory; there is One who seeks and judges.
51 “Most assuredly, I say to you, if anyone keeps My word he shall never see death.”
52 Then the Jews said to Him, “Now we know that You have a demon! Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and You say, ‘If anyone keeps My word he shall never taste death.’
53 “Are You greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Whom do You make Yourself out to be?”
54 Jesus answered, “If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me, of whom you say that He is your God.
55 “Yet you have not known Him, but I know Him. And if I say, ‘I do not know Him,’ I shall be a liar like you; but I do know Him and keep His word.
56 “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.”
57 Then the Jews said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?”
58 Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”
59 Then they took up stones to throw at Him; but Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by. (NKJ)
37 “If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me;
38 “but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him.”
39 Therefore they sought again to seize Him, but He escaped out of their hand. (NKJ)
Jesus could “pass through the midst of them”, and overcome every attack of the enemy:
Because Jesus kept Himself in the Love of God, therefore the enemy could not “touch” Him
I Jn 5:18 – We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him. (NKJ)
Because He was submitted to His Father’s will at all times,
Because He walked in the Spirit and not the flesh,
Because He overcame every temptation of the enemy, and gave the devil no place,
Because His purpose had not yet been fulfilled, they could not kill Him before the time ordained by the Father. He was able to “pass through” the midst of them unharmed or unaffected
John 14:30 – “I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me. (NKJ)
Jesus was subjected to His Father, therefore he functioned in great power – His words had authority (exousia) which released the power of God (dunamis)
31 Then He went down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee, and was teaching them on the Sabbaths.
32 And they were astonished at His teaching, for His word was with authority.
33 Now in the synagogue there was a man who had a spirit of an unclean demon. And he cried out with a loud voice,
34 saying, “Let us alone! What have we to do with You, Jesus of Nazareth? Did You come to destroy us? I know who You are– the Holy One of God!”
35 But Jesus rebuked him, saying, “Be quiet, and come out of him!” And when the demon had thrown him in their midst, it came out of him and did not hurt him.
36 Then they were all amazed and spoke among themselves, saying, “What a word this is! For with authority (exousia) and power (dunamis) He commands the unclean spirits, and
they come out.”
1 Then He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases.
2 He sent them to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.
3 And He said to them, “Take nothing for the journey, neither staffs nor bag nor bread nor money; and do not have two tunics apiece.
4 “Whatever house you enter, stay there, and from there depart.
5 “And whoever will not receive you, when you go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet as a testimony against them.”
6 So they departed and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere. (NKJ)
17 Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.”
18 And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.
19 “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. (NKJ)
14 And He was casting out a demon, and it was mute. So it was, when the demon had gone out, that the mute spoke; and the multitudes marveled.
15 But some of them said, “He casts out demons by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons.”
16 Others, testing Him, sought from Him a sign from heaven.
17 But He, knowing their thoughts, said to them: “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and a house divided against a house falls.
18 “If Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? Because you say I cast out demons by Beelzebub.
19 “And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges.
20 “But if I cast out demons with the finger of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you. (NKJ)
Ruth Heflin – “If there is death in you, you cannot raise the dead.”
23 So He called them to Himself and said to them in parables: “How can Satan cast out Satan?
24 “If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.
25 “And if a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.
26 “And if Satan has risen up against himself, and is divided, he cannot stand, but has an end.
Prov 16:32 – He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city. (NKJ)
To rule = (have, make to have) dominion, governor, govern, reign, (bear, cause to, have) rule, have power.
We must understand that the supreme law of kingdom rule is love. When godly authority is exerted, it is always done in love – the love of God. Authority without love is control, domination, or antichrist, of your carnal or fleshly nature. The rule of God is never enforced over people, only devils and demons.
Our apostolic prayer is not simply the exercise of uttering prayers like the Pharisees did, but it is an expression of the rule of God in the earth manifested through our lives individually and our local church corporately.
Only self-governed people can truly express the government of God.
We must become “Self-governing” – ruling, or managing your own house (your body is the temple of the Holy Sprit); our life must be controlled by the Holy Spirit.
The Lordship of Jesus means we have voluntarily subjected (submitted) our soul (mind, will and emotions, our life) to His authority, to His Word, His will, etc. It means being submitted to and controlled by the Holy Spirit – governed and guided, taught, and obedient to His commands – “not my will …”
Personal internal rebellion defiles the expression of divine order. Our soul (flesh, mind, will and emotions) must be subjected to the Lordship of Christ. The spirit of man, indwelt by the Spirit of God must rise and rule our lives. The nature of Christ manifests in us and through us.
Functioning in apostolic authority to work signs and wonders, to take territories, and have dominion over principalities and powers, over the atmosphere, all depends on being governed internally by the Holy Spirit.
1 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.
2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. (NKJ)
This person lacks the ability to govern and exercise any real authority over the region in which they live.
Prov 25:28 – Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control. (NIV)
Prov 25:28 – Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down, without walls.
Prov 25:28 – A person without self-control is as defenseless as a city with broken-down walls.
Rom 12:21 — Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (NKJ)
Prov 16:32 – He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit
than he who takes a city.
1 Tim 3:4-5 – one who rules (manages, govern) his own house (body, life) well, having his children in submission with all reverence
(for if a man does not know how to rule (manage) his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?); (NKJ)
This principle functions on every level: self, family, church, work, government
All demonic powers operate through thinking patterns (mindsets or strongholds) in the people they influence and control. There is no activity of a principality in the heavens without the active outworking of a principle upon the earth. The strength of apostolic warfare is in the dismantling of long entrenched oppositional mindsets in people on this earth. (2 Cor. 10:3-5) A stronghold is any thinking or belief or action that opposes the will of God.
Apostolic warfare pulls down and demolishes strongholds and brings every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. When through powerful preaching, apostolic impartation, and the accompanying acts of God, these patterns are broken, people are set free to be shaped into a new activity by the power of truth they have received. This is how Paul preached and ministered
Rule = to stand before, i.e. in rank, to preside, or (by implication) to practice: maintain, be over, rule.
Matt 10:1- And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power (authority) over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease. (NKJ)
Mark 3:15 – And to have power (authority) to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils: (KJV)
The apostle Paul understood authority. He understood and functioned in the sphere or realm of authority that God had given him. He knew that if he went beyond the authority that had been granted to him by the grace of God, that he would bring judgment on himself and on the work of God.
Judgment comes in the form of: strife, division, confusion, reproach, loss (loss could be a job, a relationship, peace, etc.), diminishing of power and influence, sickness, depression, even premature death.
1 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.
2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. (NKJ)
2 Cor 10:8-16
8 For even if I should boast somewhat more about our authority, which the Lord gave us for edification and not for your destruction, I shall not be ashamed–
9 lest I seem to terrify you by letters.
10 “For his letters,” they say, “are weighty and powerful, but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.”
11 Let such a person consider this, that what we are in word by letters when we are absent, such we will also be in deed when we are present.
12 For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.
13 We, however, will not boast beyond measure, but within the limits of the sphere which God appointed us– a sphere which especially includes you.
14 For we are not overextending ourselves (as though our authority did not extend to you), for it was to you that we came with the gospel of Christ;
15 not boasting of things beyond measure, that is, in other men’s labors, but having hope, that as your faith is increased, we shall be greatly enlarged by you in our sphere,
16 to preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, and not to boast in another man’s sphere of accomplishment. (NKJ)
2 Cor 13:10 – Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the authority which the Lord has given me for edification and not for destruction. (NKJ)
10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers (authorities) in the heavenly places,
11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. (NKJ)
Eph 6:12 – For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers (authorities), against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. (NKJ)
Col 2:15 — Having disarmed principalities and powers (authorities), He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it. (NKJ)
1 Pet 3:22 — who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him. (NKJ)
We must rule in wisdom –
14 Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom; I am understanding, I have strength.
15 By me kings reign, and rulers decree justice.
16 By me princes rule, and nobles, all the judges of the earth. (NKJ)
13 Who is wise and understanding (discerning) among you? Let him show by good conduct (behavior, manner of life) that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom.
14 But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth.
15 This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic.
16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.
17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.
18 Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. (NKJ)
GOVERNMENT OF GOD — by Doug Fortune
Is. 9:6-7 “…and the GOVERNMENT shall be upon His shoulder… of the increase of His government and of peace there shall be no end.”;
Col.3:15-16 “…and let the PEACE of Christ rule (govern) in your hearts… let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom…”
The word that is translated as ‘government’ in Isaiah 9 is misrah; it comes from the word “sawraw”, which is a primary root meaning to prevail, to have power.
The word translated as ‘rule’ in Col. 3 is “brabeuo”, meaning to govern, to prevail.
If governing means prevailing, then obviously there is something we are prevailing against… and we must understand what IT is, before we can prevail against it! “…We do not war after the flesh… to the pulling down of strongholds, casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God…”(2Cor.10:3-5);
Or, as the Amplified Bible says, “…we refute arguments and theories and reasonings… and we lead EVERY thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ.”
I believe that what we are to prevail against are the carnal mentalities of the Adamic nature. Eph. 6:12 also tells us that we wrestle “…against principalities, against powers (authorities), against rulers of darkness…”; in order to prevail or govern we must understand how spiritual entities operate within the bounds of spiritual authority.
Evil must have an entrance (gate or door) into the earth and this is found through the iniquity and sin of man.
You see, a principality is really a demonic spirit that operates through a ‘principle’ that MAN gives authority to, ‘…whatever YOU bind (that is, declare to be legally binding) on the earth shall be bound in heaven…’ (Mt.16:19).
The way you defeat a principality is by establishing via your LIFESTYLE, your very presence, a higher ‘principle’. Principalities, powers, demonic forces only have authority in the realm of the SOUL (or the natural realm), and only as man gives them entrance by operating in those ‘principles’ of darkness.
We defeat them as we live from the realm of the SPIRIT, a higher realm of authority… we are literally bringing the Kingdom of heaven (the spiritual realm) to bear upon the kingdom of this world.
This happens NOT by shouting at a demon, but rather by walking as the manifestation of Christ in the earth… warfare automatically erupts as we walk into the situation by reason of our very presence, or actually the presence of Christ IN US. THEN we can shout at that demonic force!
This is the government that must be established first… the governing of the SOUL by the SPIRIT and from this position of being under and within the authority of Christ, the SOUL under the authority of the SPIRIT, then we declare the Kingdom of God on earth.
The government is upon His shoulder, and WE are His BODY; so as the Body of Christ, the government is upon OUR shoulder also. which is our head.
I must have an accurate mentality in order to govern or prevail. I’m not talking about just having made mental assent to an apostolic concept either, I’m talking about our SOUL being governed by our SPIRIT, taking on the MIND of Christ.
You’ll notice that the verses we are working from speak of PEACE [Peace = health, prosperity, safety in spirit, soul, body and property; happiness and joy, quietness and rest, total and complete welfare, to be saved.] closely tied to governing and prevailing… if you are always stressed out, then you are not living from your SPIRIT. Much of our stress stems from uncertainty and worry, which is based in fear. Fear can be a powerful controlling influence in a person’s life. Zoe, which is SPIRIT Life or the life of God, is submitted to and always aware of the sovereignty of God, and that it is His plan and His work in us and through us.
We must cooperate but it is His work.
Once this understanding of His sovereignty and His peace has been established in us, then we can approach issues of functional authority and governing.
The Kingdom or government within us determines the kingdom around us… until the one is established, the other will not function properly.
The following summary is a chapter taken from Francis’s book titled,
“The Three Battlegrounds”.
RULE IN THE MIDST OF YOUR ENEMIES!
Our peace does not come from extreme indifference, nor is it from becoming
so “spiritual” that you fail to notice a problem. It is being so confident
in God’s love that you know, regardless of the battle and the difficulties
in your circumstances, that “greater is He who is in you than he who is in
the world” (1 John 4:4). You are not self-assured, you are God-assured.
The God of Peace Will Crush Satan
To wage effective spiritual warfare, we must understand spiritual
authority. Spiritual authority is not forcing your will upon another. When
you have spiritual authority, you have established God’s peace in an area
that once was full of conflict and oppression. Therefore, to truly be able
to move in authority, we must first have peace.
The apostle Paul taught, “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under
your feet” (Rom. 16:20). When we maintain peace during warfare it is a
crushing deathblow to satanic oppression and fear. Our victory never
comes from our emotions nor our intellect. Our victory comes by refusing
to judge by what our eyes see or our ears hear, and by trusting that what
God has promised will come to pass.
We will never know Christ’s victory in its fullness until we stop reacting
humanly to our circumstances. When you truly have authority over something
you can look at that thing without worry, fear, or anxiety. Your peace is
the proof of your victory. Jesus’ authority over the violent storm (Matt.
8:23-27) was the exercise and expansion of His peace over the elements. He
did not fight against the storm, nor did He fear it. He faced its fury and
subdued it with His authority, in perfect peace. In Pilate’s court, in a
world stirred to an emotional frenzy by the powers of hell, a holy
tranquility surrounded Christ — peace that was born out of His resolve to
do God’s will no matter what the cost. His Spirit emanated a calm that
perfectly represented the peace at God’s throne. In a matter of moments it
was no longer Jesus who was on trial, but Satan, Pilate, and the nation of
Satan’s arsenal consists of such things as fear, worry, doubt, and
self-pity. Every one of these weapons robs us of peace and leaves us
troubled inside. Do you want to discern where the enemy is coming against
you? In the network of your relationships, wherever you do not have peace,
you have war. Conversely, wherever you have victory, you have peace. When
Satan hurls his darts against you, the more peace you have during
adversity, the more truly you are walking in Christ’s victory.
Paul tells us to be “in no way alarmed by your opponents which is a sign
of destruction for them, but of salvation for you” (Phil. 1:28). Your
peace, your immovable stand upon the Word of God, is a sign that you are
positioned correctly in perfect submission to the will of God. The very
fact that you are “in no way alarmed” by your adversary is a sign that you
have authority over him.
Peacemakers Are Sons of God
Peace is Spirit power. A peacemaker is not merely someone who protests
against war; he is one who is inwardly so yielded to Christ in spirit and
purpose that He can be called a “son of God.” Where he goes, God goes and
where God goes, he goes. He is fearless, calm, and bold. Peace emanates
from him the way light and heat radiate from fire.
In the battles of life, your peace is actually a weapon. Indeed, your
confidence declares that you are not falling for the lies of the devil.
You see, the first step toward having spiritual authority over the
adversary is having peace in spite of our circumstances. When Jesus
confronted the devil, He did not confront Satan with His emotions or in
fear. Knowing that the devil was a liar, He simply refused to be
influenced by any other voice than God’s. His peace overwhelmed Satan; His
authority then shattered the lie, which sent demons fleeing.
Rest Before Rule
In the 23rd Psalm, David declares, “Even though I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death, I fear no evil; for Thou art with me” (v. 4).
There is a place of walking with God where you simply fear no evil. David
faced a lion, a bear, and a giant. In this psalm he stood in the “shadow
of death” itself, yet he feared no evil. David’s trust was in the Lord. He
said, “for Thou art with me.” Because God is with you, every adversity you
face will unfold in victory as you maintain your faith in God! David
continued, “Thou dost prepare a table before me in the presence of my
enemies” (v. 5). The battle you are in will soon become a meal to you, an
experience that will nourish and build you up spiritually.
Only God’s peace will quell your fleshly reactions in battle. The source
of God’s peace is God Himself. Indeed, “before the throne there was, as it
were, a sea of glass like crystal” (Rev. 4:6). The glass sea is a symbol:
there are no ripples, no waves, no anxieties troubling God. The Lord is
never worried, never in a hurry nor without an answer. The sea around Him
is perfectly still and totally calm. All our victories flow out from being
seated here with Him.
God is our Father. The heavenly Jerusalem is our mother, the birthplace of
our new nature (Gal. 4:26). And you, you are a beloved child of God, part
of the Father’s family, and a member of His household (Eph. 2:19). You
must know by revelation that you are not struggling to get up into heaven;
rather, you were born there in spiritual rebirth (John 3:1-8 amplified).
You must be settled and positioned correctly in your relationship with the
To those who have been born again from above, He says, “Sit at My right
hand, until I make Thine enemies a footstool for Thy feet” (Ps. 110:1).
Before you go into warfare, recognize that it is not you that the devil is
afraid of, it is Christ in you! We have been raised up and seated with
Christ in heavenly places (Eph. 2:6). This is why the Holy Spirit
continues to speak to us that worship of God is our first response in
battle. Position yourself in the Presence of God. Sit, at rest, in the
knowledge that Christ has already made your enemies the footstool for your
feet. From the position of rest, the Word of the Lord continues, “The Lord
will stretch forth Thy strong scepter from Zion, saying, ‘Rule in the
midst of Thine enemies’ ” (Ps. 110:2).
Rest precedes rule. Peace precedes power. Do not seek to rule over the
devil until you are submitting to God’s rule over you. The focal point of
all victory comes from seeking God until you find Him, and having found
Him, allowing His Presence to fill your spirit with His peace. From full
assurance at His right hand, as we rest in His victory, let us rule in the
midst of our enemies.