“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war in the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds—casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”
II Corinthians 10:3-5
We all have them; it’s a question of whether or not we want to pull them down.
The Greek word “ochuroma” is used here for “strongholds” and also means “castle, fortress, to hold safely, etc.” Thus, it’s a picture of a well-fortified place that took much time and considerable effort to construct. And, in reality, that’s the same way a sinful stronghold occurs in a person’s life.
It begins with a single act. Then, another and another. And, before you know it that solitary sin has become a lifestyle of sin in which one has “fallen into the snare of the devil and taken captive by him at his will” (II Tim. 2:26). Or, another way to put it is “The one who is ensnared by the devil soon becomes the devil’s puppet and is powerless to resist or conquer him without someone’s help.”
Now, the world calls strongholds “addictions.”
But, that conveys the idea of someone’s being a victim to external enticements and removes any personal responsibility, blaming it instead on “disease” or a “syndrome.” Yet, the Bible says we are “drawn away by our own lust and enticed” (James 1:14; cf. I Jn. 2:16). Thus, we do better to view strongholds as “prisons of our own making.”
However, the Good News in today’s Manna is that we do not have to continue being bound and beaten by our internal captor. A thousand times no! Instead, through Christ’s Presence in our lives and drawing on His Resurrection Power, we are able to properly engage in spiritual warfare and begin “pulling down these strongholds.” Hallelujah!!
Sometimes they’ll come down quickly; other times it’ll take a long time.
But, the key is remembering that “greater is He that’s within us that he that is in the world” (I Jn. 4:4) and “. . .this is the victory that overcomes the world—even our faith” (I Jn. 5:4). Truly, through Christ “we are more than conquerors” (Rom. 8:37) and equipped/enabled to wage effective warfare against the devil and his demonic cohorts (Eph. 6:10-18). Glory!!
This will require a “casting down (Grk. ‘kathaireo’—‘to demolish, pulverize, pull down violently, etc.’) of imaginations (Grk. ‘logismos’—‘computation, reasoning, speculation, surmising, to take an inventory, estimate, etc.’) and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God.” And, this will not happen until we “bring into captivity EVERY THOUGHT to the obedience of Christ”—i.e., lasso every wayward, sinful thought and bring it under Jesus’ Lordship by casting it down at His Feet.
Life’s too short to be bound by satan, sin and strongholds. This is your day to be free, Pilgrim (Is. 61:1-3). The Master has come. His Power is present. Ask Him to help you begin pulling down those strongholds even now so you can experience His “abundant Life” (Jn. 10:10b).
May 19, 2011