Category Archives: Family

Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

How God’s leaders can lose their own family in the victory of ministry

Continuing from the previous post about demonic retaliation and Jephthah’s unhealthy promotion as a leader over Gilead I would like to suggest a deeper analysis in order to unmask the spiritual situation to which Jephthah submitted himself. I would like to mention just two relevant points regarding the spiritual situation lived out by Jephthah.

Israel’s moral inconsistencies

We can characterize the spiritual environment caused by Israel’s leaders as spiritually fickle with a lack of zeal for God. A true leadership crisis had developed in this spiritually unhealthy environment. Jephthah entered battle without any spiritual covering. The very way that the nation established his leadership position revealed how it had no spiritual ceiling.

Discerning the real enemy: the Ammonites

snatching defeat from the jaws of victoryThe Ammonites were one of Israel’s worst enemies. The knowledge of one’s enemy can make the difference between victory and defeat. When you identify your enemies, not only can you discern the type of methods they use but also the strategies and subtleties of their attacks.

We can identify the demonic principalities that dominated the territory of the Ammonites by examining the spiritual roots of the nation.

Ammon and Moab were Lot’s sons conceived through incest with his own daughters. (Genesis 19:24-38) They were bastard sons, the fruit of incest. They became the people who represented the opposition to God’s salvation: “An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter the assembly of the Lord; even to the tenth generation none of his descendants shall enter the assembly of the Lord forever” (Deuteronomy 23:3)

We can identify the demonic principality of Ammon as sexual perversion. Such were the stigmatic characteristics that persecuted Jephthah’s life. He was also a bastard child, the son of prostitution and adultery. Both transgressions involve the sins of immorality and perversion. By considering his tragic inheritance, we unmask Jephthah’s vulnerability relative to the enemy that he had to face. He was fighting a lost battle, the enemy having already infiltrating his life.

Sexual perversion is never an isolated sin but involves many other iniquities such as drunkenness, dishonor of mother and father, immorality, seduction as well as complexes of complicity, inferiority, shame, rejection and loneliness.

Lot, the father of the Ammonites had lost everything having reaped the bad fruit of his covetousness. While he was with Abraham, he lived in wealth and prosperity, but his covetousness for the plains of Jordan and the fertile valley of Sodom overcame him. Now he had nothing left. He was betrayed by his eyes and overcome by his own covetousness, which brought affliction and destruction to his family in the process. “He who is greedy for gain troubles his own house.” (Proverbs 15:27)

The Spirit of Sodom contaminated his family subjecting it to God’s judgment. His wife became a pillar of salt (perhaps she was petrified by falling lava for having left her heart in Sodom). Her death became an emblem of apostasy. Her and Lot’s children were on the same path: they lost their house, their city, their possessions, their mother, and now they lost their morals and respect for their father.

Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve the lineage of our father.” (Genesis 19:32)

Lot’s daughters, like all wives in Israel, couldn’t bear the shame of not having children. Just this circumstance alone represents the great misery and destruction suffered by Lot’s family. Such was the heritage left by Ammon and Moab. Illuminated by this knowledge, we can spiritually define and better understand who the Ammonites were.

It is worth questioning the possibility of whether what happened to the daughters of Lot has anything to do with what happened to Jephthah’s daughter. The truth is that the same spirit that destroyed Lot’s daughters also destroyed the daughter of Jephthah. Lot and Jephthah represent an evil paradox of two heroes of faith who lost their families. Milcom (Molech), the abomination and demonic entity of the Ammonites, destroyed the daughters of these two men through sexual perversion.

Immorality is a relentless enemy that draws near to us to the degree that we stray from the Lord. God himself made an interesting statement when he said, “Moab is my washpot” (Psalm 60:8) Solomon understood this powerful truth about God’s judgment, “For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites” (1 Kings 11:5), and thus confessed:

And I find more bitter than death The woman whose heart is snares and nets, Whose hands are fetters. He who pleases God shall escape from her, But the sinner shall be trapped by her. (Ecclesiastes 7:26)

When someone, especially a spiritual leader falls into the grip of immorality, it is because they have been displeasing God for a long time, “Those who worship the host of heaven on the housetops; those who worship and swear oaths by the Lord, But who also swear by Milcom. Those who have turned back from following the Lord, and have not sought the Lord, nor inquired of Him.” Be silent in the presence of the Lord God; For the day of the Lord is at hand, For the Lord has prepared a sacrifice; He has invited His guests. “And it shall be, in the day of the Lord’s sacrifice, That I will punish the princes and the king’s children, And all such as are clothed with foreign apparel.” (Zephaniah 1:5-8)

By analyzing the profile of the enemy and Jephthah’s internal conflict, we can understand the trap in which he fell when he accepted the challenge of defeating the Ammonites in exchange for the reward of becoming the leader of Gilead: “Come and be our commander that we may fight against the people of Ammon.” This invitation was the perfect bait for the type of spiritual breach in his life. Jephthah and his family were spiritually compelled and dominated by the territorial principality of the Ammonites.

The retaliation was sure to come. In a foolish vow “to God”, he committed himself to destroy the life of his only son as a burnt offering to God. In this manner, Milcom perverts the knowledge of God and blurs spiritual discernment. Jephthah became the leader of the city but destroyed his family lineage in the process. In his emotional revenge, he ended up becoming the person who suffered the most.

We must understand that under the principle of human responsibility, God uses only what we give him. He is great enough to use flawed men for his purposes but if his leaders refuse to abide by his principles, they will suffer adverse consequences at the hands of the enemy independently of how much God uses them for good.

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Familiar Spirits

How to deal with familiar spirits

Familiar SpiritsAnd when they say to you, “Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter,” should not a people seek their God? Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living? (Isaiah 8:19)

Familiar or “family” spirits are demonic entities that have lodged themselves in a family tree taking on the identity of a deceased relative. Communication with these spirits forms the basis for most indigenous religions around the world. Contact with these spirits can occur through occult practices or imperceptibly through spiritual inheritance or the passing down of behaviors, dramatic episodes, sicknesses, accidents, etc.

Even though these familiar spirits are real, they are also lying spirits, through these deceiving spirits the devil has established one of his most successful tools of deceit. He has created an entire religious system based on the consultation of ancestors.

TWO FUNDAMENTAL LAWS

Concerning familiar spirits, the Bible suggests two fundamental laws or principles: the law of inheritance and the law of responsibility. The law of inheritance says:

“For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and fourth generations of those who hate me” . . . (Exodus 20:5)

The law of responsibility says:

“The person who sins will die. The sun will not bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity, nor will the father bear the punishment for the son’s iniquity; the righteousness of the righteous will be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked will be upon himself.” (Ezekiel 18:20)

You can see that these passages present two very distinct laws. Is there a contradiction between them? Which one is right: inheritance or responsibility? I suggest that such a question is not helpful. If we pit one scripture passage against another, we may develop a fallacious, unbalanced vision of spiritual warfare that will result in serious spiritual and emotional damage in families when we should be leading them to freedom and healing. Taking sides on this matter creates an imbalance in which we exalt one principle to the detriment of the other. This is how we lose the battle.

Unfortunately, today we see these two laws polarizing the body of Christ into two opposing camps of extreme positions. On one hand, we have those on the law of inheritance team. These “spiritual zealots” often see demons behind every bush, spiritualizing the natural, embracing spiritual terrorism, giving demons credit for things they didn’t do and often disregarding the lifestyle of the person in question. This is actually the type of propaganda that the devil wants to make in respect to the ministry of deliverance. We need to break this curse that is over the breaking of curses.

We also have those on the team of the law of responsibility. Usually these people have never ministered deliverance and have never proved their ability through practical experience in deliverance, which is fundamental in ministry. Unfortunately, the winner in this theological debate, which usually demonstrates the lack of wisdom in the church, is the spirit of division and pride.

The two laws appear to contradict one another, but actually, they work hand-in-hand. God is not incoherent. We cannot attack one spiritual principle with another. Whenever we follow one principle to the detriment of the other or attack one principle with the other, we show a lack of wisdom.

The Bible expresses a spiritual inheritance as an influence or a “visitation”, passed down through succeeding generations. Responsibility is a choice that is above any influence. Therefore no influence can ever become a moral obligation. We can never use our spiritual inheritance as an excuse for our moral irresponsibility. Ezekiel addressed this error of Israel in chapter 18.

The Bible never teaches that the law of inheritance implies that we bear the guilt of our parent’s sins, but that we suffer the consequences of them. One person may have been born to a father who wasted his livelihood gambling, thus was born into poverty to no fault of his own. Another person may have been born to a billionaire due to no choice of his own. This is the law of inheritance. The law of spiritual inheritance seems like a strange concept of righteousness without merit. If there is such a thing as physical inheritance there most certainly is also such a thing as spiritual heritage.

God always deals with his people through the perspective of generations. The promises and covenants that God made to Abraham, David and others, referred to these men’s descendants and future generations. All of these promises had conditions that would determine whether God would fulfill them or not. All covenants have terms and sanctions which have benefits if they are fulfilled, and penalties or curses if they aren’t. This is how the law of hereditary harmonizes with the law of responsibility and establishes a legacy that spans generations.

TWO ERRORS

The law of heredity in detriment to the law of responsibility

When we emphasize spiritual inheritance and ignore personal responsibility, we are being fatalistic. In other words, we act as if we are predestined to a specific karma. The fault or rather, the excuse is that we have certain characteristics that we have inherited from our ancestors and we have no any way to change the situation. This is the basis for occultism.

In this attempt to escape God’s judgment, we become victims of Satan’s terrible deception as well as God’s swift judgment. John the Baptist confronted the Pharisees and Sadducees with the law of responsibility when they attempted to flee their spiritual responsibilities saying they were children of Abraham.

But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Therefore, bear fruits worthy of repentance, and do not think to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father. ‘For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones. And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore, every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. (Matthew 3:7-10)

If we fatalistically accept a curse or number of curses, we tragically oppose our own intrinsic ability to choose and take responsibility to choose. The law of responsibility is above the law of inheritance seeing that spiritual inheritance is simply an influence. The law of responsibility teaches that our choices determine our character and our destiny. We have the power and the duty to make right choices independently of any outside influences that come at us.

The law of responsibility in detriment to the law of heredity

If we emphasize our responsibility while ignoring our spiritual heritage, we may experience unnecessary suffering and misfortune. However, this disregard of our spiritual heritage will not compromise our salvation. We can live with curses in our inner life, whether we are saved or not. In such situations, we simply become victims of our own ignorance. But to ignore a curse is a serious mistake.

In practice, what usually happens is that people who go to this extreme, even though they have an austere moral life, when they go through a moment of weakness they are easily overcome by family curses and, in the end, repeat the sins that their parents failed to deal with.

More than 80% of the most serious problems people experience are repetitions of the same problems that their parents and ancestors also experienced. If we ignore the influential power of the family legacy, in more than a few cases, we will certainly continue living without the experience of satisfactory results. As we value spiritual inheritance as well as personal responsibility, we move towards the position of spiritual victory. As we responsibly deal with the consequences of our choices and deal with the demonic influences we have inherited, we give evidence of our sincere repentance.

Summary:

Law of inheritance Law of responsibility
Emphasizes spiritual visitation or influence in the form of punishment of successive generations.“Now therefore, go, lead the people to the place of which I have spoken to you. Behold, My Angel shall go before you. Nevertheless, in the day when I visit for punishment, I will visit punishment upon them for their sin.” Exodus 32:34 Emphasizes our moral duty and our individual responsibility for our choices.“The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.” Ezekiel 18:20
Curses passed down from past generations represent visitations that have “legal” rights over us due to the iniquities of our ancestors. A devastated past interferes with the present.“Oh Lord, according to all your righteousness, I pray, let your anger and your fury be turned away from your city Jerusalem, your holy mountain; because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and your people are a reproach to all those around us.” Daniel 9:16 Curses due to our present situation emphasize God’s judgment as consequence of our own sin and hardness of heart.“For I have told him that I will judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knows, because his sons made themselves vile, and he did not restrain them.” 1 Samuel 3:13
The individual suffers the consequences. Emphasizes the consequences of sins which have not yet been confessed or dealt with.“Prepare slaughter for his children because of the iniquity of their fathers.” Isaiah 14:21 The individual bears the guilt.Emphasizes the righteousness or guilt of personal choices regarding sin.“The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.” Ezekiel 18:20b
The law of inheritance is collective exercising influence over all descendants. The consequence of a curse and the breaking of a curse affect all those under the person who unleashed the legacy through their actions.“But any of your men whom I do not cut off from my altar shall consume your eyes and grieve your heart. And all the descendants of your house shall die in the flowering of their age.” 1 Samuel 2:33 The law of responsibility is personal. God makes us intrinsically responsible for our actions. Even if we are influenced by a family legacy of a curse, the Bible does not exempt us from making right decisions. God is personal and relates to us on a personal level. We are accountable to God for all the decisions we make.

The effects of the spiritual covering of our parents

A family legacy represents the consequences of our parent’s choices that directly affect the successive generations relative to three fundamental areas of life:

Identity

The family covering can build up or tear down a person’s healthy self-esteem and sense of protection. The type of spiritual covering left by the parents directly influences the child’s ability to assimilate properly the truth about God.

Relationships

The family covering may build up or destroy a person’s confidence, trust and intimacy. Trust and trustworthiness are fruit of emotional investment and, above all, the spiritual protection provided by the parents.

Heritage

The ability to materialize ideas, to be fruitful and live according to the purpose for which God created us can either be cultivated or aborted, depending on our family covering. Gifts and vocations can either be locked up or released.

We receive these three interdependent values: identity, relationships and heritage directly from our family. We have either all of them or none of them. We cannot sacrifice one to keep the others. We are a product, or sometimes unfortunately, a byproduct, of our family and of the type of relationship we choose to adopt with respect to it, primarily in relation to our parents. Heritage and responsibility are two laws that walk hand in hand.

“Blessed [are] the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” (Matthew 5:9)

This blessing shows the connection between the ability to relate and the ability to know and enjoy our own identity. The practice of peace endorses the ability to relate as and to be called a child of God, indicating the possession of a true identity.

Therefore, the revelation of our identity depends on the state of reconciliation of our family. If you are a peacemaker, then you are a child and you know who you are in God. If you are a destroyer of relationships, then your identity will be obscured by a cloak of orphan hood.

Consequently, when a person abandons his identity as a son and sacrifices sonship because of wounds that he has suffered, his heritage is also plundered. You cannot cease to be a child and still be an heir. This was the conclusion of the prodigal son:

“I will get up and go to my father, and I will say to him, father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight; I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me as one of your hired men.” (Luke 15:18-19)

He realized that in rebelling against his father he became unworthy to be considered his son; he lost his identity and thus lost his inheritance.

Legacies due to family curses produce wounds. Wounds from our parents which have not been dealt with interfere in the formation of our own family. Because of these roots, many Christians lose God’s blessing over their homes, which is the seal of approval for ministry, as I will demonstrate in later articles.

SPIRITUAL LEGACY OF PARENTS

Spiritual legacy of parents“You know that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your fathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot”. (1 Peter 1:18,19)

While on one hand many people recognize that the main channel through which God blesses us is our parents, on the other hand, the above passage speaks of the futile legacy of empty tradition, which is capable of stifling our behavior and compromising the development of our personality.

Our ability to keep traditions is Satan’s favorite target through which he attempts to establish and perpetuate his own purposes. In this way, he can seize not only one generation, but a whole family lineage.

“Those from among you shall build the old waste places, you shall raise up the foundations of many generations, you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to dwell in.” (Isaiah 58:12)

Many ways or paths must be restored. Many have not only lost their house key – they have lost their way home. They are distant, lost, their family has been ruined and its foundations have been destroyed. This becomes a chronic pattern that passes from generation to generation. God is seeking for intercessors in each family. God wants to find you; someone who has the understanding to repair the breaches, map out the roots problems, and rescue the family from the devastating accusations of the enemy.

It is necessary to better explain what is meant by the futile way of living which, through tradition, we receive from our parents. Spiritual breaches left by our parents produce consequences and influences in successive generations. It is important to point out that children inherit the consequences but not the guilt of the sins of their fathers. When Adam chose to sin, death entered his descendants who we refer to as the human race. That is a consequence of Adam’s sin. We inherit not only the sin of Adam, but the debt and its respective consequences. For example, if a woman has AIDS and gives birth to a child, is the child guilty of being born with AIDS? Of course not! However, even though the child doesn’t bear the guilt, he or she will suffer the consequences. This is the definition of a legacy. In Lamentations Jeremiah explains the situation of the people of Israel in captivity by stating this principle:

“Our fathers sinned, and we know more, and we bear their iniquities.” (Lamentations 5:7)

These consequences come in the form of curses, bondage, misfortunes, pernicious spiritual influences, physical illnesses and many other problems which make life difficult and which attempt to provoke the same behavior that sustains the breaches that were opened in previous generations. This is the principle of how the spiritual legacy is created.

We must not interpret these legacies in a fatalistic manner, but rather, as realities which can and should be changed through the restoring power of Jesus. Jesus emphasized this perspective when his disciples asked him about a man who was born blind:

(And his disciples asked him, Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, it was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be made manifest in him.” (John 9:2, 3)

In this situation, Jesus chose not to emphasize the “why” of the situation, but the “so that”. They already knew the “why”, but they were still blind regarding the “so that”. There was a dose of fatalism that needed to be removed. Together with the whole picture of necessities, misfortunes, curses and possibilities, the impossibility of a miracle coexists. Jesus is this possibility of a miracle.

Therefore to sum up all of our problems by virtue of this hereditary component is a mistake, but to ignore it is a more serious mistake. We need to deal not only with the guilt regarding our own sins, but also with the consequences of the unresolved or un-confessed sin of our parents and grandparents. In this way, we will stop speaking about hereditary curses and start talking about hereditary blessings.

When a scene is repeated across several generations it can be defined as an iniquity. Iniquities can cause curses which bring whole family lineages into bondage that need to be confessed in intercession.

SPIRITUAL ORPHANHOOD: THE VEIL OF MOLECH

 Broken parent/child relationships and worshipspiritual orphanhood

When the relationship between parents and their children is broken, the children’s relationship with God is directly affected and a malignant insensibility penetrates their hearts. God desires to have a relationship with us as our father. This can be a huge challenge if we have broken off our relationship with our parents. He wants to teach us to be parents. He wants to elevate us to this level of maturity. This is one of the secrets of spiritual fruitfulness.

When we have unresolved problems with our parents we tend to limit our relationship with Jesus as a mere friend and avoid God’s divine role as our spiritual father. The more we insist on a relationship with God without resolving our relational problems with our parents, the more we become like an island. Our tendency is to establish a superficial relationship with God.

The truth is that our parents and the nature of our relationship with them function like spiritual lenses through which we see the nature and character of God. They are the filter of the revelation of God in our lives. If the lens is broken or obscured, we will have a distorted view of God.

When our knowledge of God is corrupted, it is easy for us to accept the lies of Satan. Every person that is rejected by their parents ends up being adopted by some demonic entity. This is how we get cut off from our spiritual identity, and this quickly compromises our relationships and hinders us from taking possession of our inheritance.

Orphanhood produces isolation and segregation. Every depressive thought of loneliness and self-rule comes from this feeling of being an isolated island in the sea of humanity. Many who come to Christ still see God as a celestial Santa Claus; a distant father who sometimes comes around to give them a gift or two.

Christ’s ultimate objective is to bring us to the father. For many people this is more painful than we can imagine. We have to overcome traumas and learn about motives and behaviors we have never received.

The father figure is connected to true worship. If Jesus mentioned true worship, it is because there also is a false worship. The place of true worship was allegorized by the most holy place in the tabernacle. Jesus showed the route to redemption through which he wants to lead us.

“Jesus said to him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the father, but by me.” (John 14:6)

The main enemy of this verse is the spirit of orphanhood. Jesus completed a statement assuring us, “I will not leave you orphans” (John 14:18). It is fundamental for us to know Jesus, but it is even more important that we allow him to lead us to a revelation of God as our father.

THE TRUE TABERNACLE

The tabernacle contained three parts and each section had its own entrance. There was the outer court where the bronze altar was located. Everyone had access to this area. The holy place was located inside and had the candle holder, the table and the show-bread. Only the priests had access to this room. The third room was the holy of holies, “. . . Behind the second curtain stood the holy of holies, containing the golden altar of incense and the Ark of the covenant covered on all sides with gold, and containing a golden urn filled with some of the manna with which God feed his people for 40 years in the desert. It also contained Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant; above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy-seat” (Hebrews 9:3-5). Only the high priests had access to this room.

The doorway that gave access to the atrium was called “the way”. The first veil; the doorway that gave access to the holy place was called “the truth”. The second veil; the doorway that gave access to the holy of holies was called “the life”. This is why Jesus prophetically said: “I am the way, and the truth and the life and no one comes to the father but by me.”

Tearing through the veil in the direction of true worship

Going to the first door, you have access to the forgiveness of sins. You are on “the way”. The bronze altar testifies that are sins have been judged in Christ. Here we become sons of God and call out to his heart, “Abba father”. We began to cry out to him and desire the fatherhood of God. This outcry continues to bring us into the heart of God.

Out of this flows a life of brokenness, a process of inner healing that begins to release us. Repentance is the first level of revelation that brings us in touch with the kingdom of God who is our father. God is not only “all-powerful”- he is our Father.

There is a distance however, between “the way” and “the truth”. It is necessary to tear through the veil of truth. It is possible for you to be on the way and still not be in the truth. There is a lot that we still do not understand or have been able to discern. You may have many corrupted ideas and philosophies, and irrational beliefs that block your relationships with people and with God. As we get to know God, he begins to reveal to us our own hearts and as a result our motives and character begin to change.

To tear the veil of truth, we have to eat the show-bread by the light of the candlesticks. A responsible life of meditating on the Word of God in light of the revelations of the Holy Spirit brings us to a greater level of revelation and transformation. We are transformed by the renewing of our mind. There is no such thing as revival, without the revelation of the Word. I am not referring to simply growing in information, but revelation from God. Most of the time, information never becomes more than mere knowledge, and can even give birth to a spirit that will further distance us from God. Revelation is always accompanied by his comforting presence. Revelation has the connotation of being personal and intimate. We need to not only have the truth taught to us, but the power of the truth revealed to us. This is the path to worship.

In the same manner, there is also a distance between “the truth” and “the life”. A person may have much revelation and still be a wounded person full of arguments. The holy of holies is a place of full surrender; a place of total death and total life! To be in “the life” means to be a person who is totally healed, whole, seeking peace with everyone and sanctification, without which no one will see the Lord. This is the place where we see God.

This access to the fatherhood of God is based on a heart that is totally reconciled to the parents. When we open our hearts to our parents our eyes open to other people and to God. We can only see the glory of God through a heart that is reconciled with its parents. From this flows worship in spirit and truth and a fruitful life of ministry. The revelation of God the Father introduces us to the level of worship!

THE FAMILY AS FOUNDATION FOR REVIVAL

Revival through the family

FamilyA father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, Is God in His holy habitation. God sets the solitary in families; He brings out those who are bound into prosperity; But the rebellious dwell in a dry land. (Psalm 68:5, 6)

TURNING THE ATTENTION TO THE FAMILY

The above passage reveals that it is God’s clear goal to heal, support, and preserve the family. In his infinite mercy, he is willing to make good on the losses and injustices which have been suffered. The family was planned out to be the proper environment, the emotional womb which generates healthy children, destined to consistent spiritual growth.

It has been clearly proven that people born outside of the protection and love of a family environment become insecure. This insecurity manifests itself in various forms of self-rejection and rebellion. This is where the deepest problems of any individual are rooted.

The most intense areas of spiritual warfare don’t begin outside in the world where the demons are throwing a party. The primary spiritual battlefield is inside the walls of the church, and is the most arduous strategy of the enemy’s attack, which is always characterized by a form of infiltration. In other words, it is in the mind, the family and the church that we will face the greatest Satanic investments. The point of attack invariably begins with the principle of attacking the authority figure. “I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.” (Matthew 26:31)

The main pillar of the family is the father figure, who is the divine reference point for the children and the wife. The absence of the father figure imposes a state of widowhood and orphanhood that destabilizes the family environment, provoking insecurity and a lack of protection. This is why Satan appears as the father of orphanhood.

We must not deceive ourselves: the strategy of attack of the enemy is against the father figure. This is readily evident in observing world religions. In Brazil there is a matriarchal religious system, run primarily by female patron Saints that, under a pretext of intercession, block the relationship with God the Father.

In Catholicism there is a big “mother of God” with the “Little Lord Jesus” in her arms and a father that never appears on the scene. This world outlook has manifested itself in the family situation shipwrecking relationships. Almost all the problems related to the wife and children are collateral effects of a father who for whatever reason, failed in fulfilling his proper place in the family. What we see so much of nowadays due to adultery and alcoholism are families with absent fathers, a “supermom” who takes on all the responsibilities, and due to her impulses motivated by insecurity becomes a “home Sargent” with the children suffering all the collateral effects of this inversion of roles.

As incredible as it may sound, in all the cultures of the world, the most common expression of Satan is as a “mother”. This is emotionally very strategic. Satan is an expert in transfiguring himself into an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14). These are frontal attacks, however subtle, against the fatherhood of God.

In the above passage from Psalm 68, God is presented as our main reference point for fatherhood. While the devil is the father of orphanhood, God is the father of the orphans, the protector of widows and the restorer of families. He has never abdicated this position in relation to the human race. Even though the human race has become lost through sin, he still adopts us thereby redeeming our sonship.

Jesus gave up his right as the “only begotten son” of God to become the “firstborn” of many brethren. Through the incredibly expensive price of his death and resurrection, he included us in his kingdom and family. We have been taken hostage by death, victims of our own sins. We were separated from God, but Jesus paid the price for our ransom and brought us back, giving us the Holy Spirit that cries out “Abba father!” Through his sacrifice he brought us into his family; not as slaves to religiosity, but as true children of God who can enjoy total liberty and have intimate access to the heart of the Father.

This is the dynamic of family restoration. The fatherhood of God exposes the company of loneliness, opens the prisons of rejection and makes the personality prosper. However, for God to break the chains of fatherlessness in our lives, we must first break the chains of rebellion in our lives. As long as we fail to do this, we will live in a totally sterile spiritual and emotional realm. We must choose to release our rights as victims and be baptized through the ministry of reconciliation.

“And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse.” (Malachi 4:6)

The curses of the land are directly related to the destruction of the structure of the family principle. This is the heart of the battlefield. The human race has been a victim of a satanic conspiracy to control the family. Sins, family conflicts and misalignments have the tendency to self-perpetuate, adversely conditioning successive generations. Many times it is not easy to resolve such situations and disarm these schemes of curses. It requires not only the search for a correct diagnosis through intelligent spiritual mapping, but also an adequate treatment and the whole process of renewal, instruction and transformation of the mind.

The spiritual leader and the family

In life we juggle many balls. Most of them are made of rubber, and if we drop them we are able to pick them up and continue juggling. The family, however, is like a glass ball. If we drop this ball, it will break. And if we lose it, we will lose the game of life. There is no success that can compensate for failure in the family. Ministry, friends, work, finances and even health are all rubber balls. If we lose them, we can easily get them back. However, if we lose our family, the spiritual trauma, especially for a leader to continue to be a leader, will be fatal.

In these situations not only have many leaders fallen to the wayside, but many churches also have been traumatized and imprisoned in terrible legacies of morality, division and curses. This path leads in the opposite direction of revival.