Thursday, June 4, 2015

Strongholds in the Church

Last night was the first prayer meeting of the GREAT (GReater Elko Area Transformation) Network. We used 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 as our foundational text for last night’s prayer. In this passage, Paul talks about how our battle is waged in the spiritual realm and, as such, we need to pray to demolish strongholds.  Because of our love for the local church and The Church of Elko/Spring Creek, we identified specific strongholds fighting against the unity that Jesus prayed for us to experience (John 17:20-23). I thought I would share our list that we created last night (admittedly, this is only a partial list and many of the items overlap or are related to each other):

Complacency/apathy/loss of first love
Self-centeredness/pride/lack of humility
Fear of change, getting hurt
Relational brokenness
Independent spirit
Lack of servant hearts
Lack of God-vision (we become comfortable with our own vision)
Lack of commitment to relationships
Bad leadership (prideful, abusive, ungodly/unspiritual) – pastors, elders/deacons, others
Concern about self-image (i.e., more interested in pleasing people than pleasing God)
Lack of knowledge (i.e., ignorance)
Unconfessed sin
Lack of love
Past hurts giving rise to unforgiveness, bitterness, distrust of leaders, anger, suspicions, misunderstandings, rumors, gossip, assuming the worst in others, etc.
Church splits (which we love to call ‘church starts/plants’) arising from disagreements, unresolved conflicts, pride, selfishness
More interested in building our individual church kingdoms than His Kingdom

My experience has been that this list could apply to almost any city in this country. Satan doesn’t have to employ any other strategies because the above list is all he needs to render the church spiritually impotent.

‘God help us’ is more than a cry out in desperation—it is a recognition that only He can provide the power necessary to break the strong-hold on our city (and your city). God help us!

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  1. With God all things are possible.

  2. Hey, Great Blog. The list looked more like a list of people living in the flesh. Wouldn't Strongholds be things like Evolution, Abortion and Gay Marriage? Tearing down strongholds that Paul is speaking about keeps people from knowing God. While the flesh can certainly keep people from knowing God, a stronghold is an attack on God and his truth. Take Evolution for example, God says he created this earth 6,000 years ago, evolution says this earth, and us living on it, all happened by chance billions of years ago. This is a stronghold because it keeps people from knowing God because it attacks unbelievers the same way Satan attacked Eve in the garden. You can't trust God is a staple of a stronghold. Look at Abortion, God says that life begins at conception, and that he knew even before that! What does Satan say, Does life really begin at conception? Looks like what he said to Eve once again. Yes we know that life begins at conception, and as such we need to protect it. The other part of a stronghold that is evident is the lack of faith that we can get rid of it. Abortion is a great example, ask 100 Christians if we can end abortion and overturn Roe V Wade? 98 will say not in our life time. A stronghold causes Christians to thing that Philippians 4:13 is irrelevant. Strongholds in general cause people to doubt the power of God to change. Strongholds are basically "Fortresses of Believe" that satan has deceitfully brought as fact. We tear down that Fortress by attacking it with Scripture and facts.Abortion for example has so many facts that can be associated with it. Medical experts will tell you that once fertilization has occurred the DNA is completely different from the mother and father, that is reasoning that will destroy that stronghold!!