the lie of fear
Do you know that the devil has a plan for us? If God has a good and perfect plan mapped out for you, the devil also has a plan figured out for your ultimate destruction. Now, if we are already saved, it’s impossible for the devil to destroy our salvation or cause us to go to hell at this point. We are permanently saved. However, he does have plans to derail our circumstances or cause us to second-guess our faith or cause strife within our marriages, churches, etc. This is a series about how the devil uses lies and “buzzwords” in order to make us think something different than God intended in the New Covenant.
This is a popular watchman's call blog post from 2009. It's the original post and the impetus for this series. It's been updated, made "printer-friendly" and is now being made into a full-blown series.
God's Spirit doesn't make us slaves who are afraid of him. Instead, we become his children and call him our Father. [a]
(Romans 8:15 CEV)
- "Father" Literally, "Abba, Father." Jewish children called their fathers "Abba."
As I minister to people, invariably the one thing that always comes up is fear. There is much fear in the Christian church yet that is not how God wants us to live. Jesus died for us to live in victory and we have that victory every day. What happens though is the devil knows we have the victory so he has to come up with something else to stop us from living in that victory. That is why the believer is confronted with so much fear. It is the devil’s way of getting us to stop. The sole purpose of the devil is to get us to stop – to stop believing, stop working and stop moving forward in our relationship with God.
Of course we know that the devil is a liar. However if we feel fear, that is what is real to us. We are used to fear. It is a human emotion that has always been with us as far back as we can remember. That is all that it is though. It’s just an emotion – a reaction to something. The devil has hijacked our emotions and is using them against us. If we recognize that, we can find a way to overcome it. Fear is really nothing and the devil knows it.
Most people who are struggling with fear and guilt are struggling because they don't have a clear understanding of God's grace for them. The truth is that we are already free. We have already been redeemed. Once we really know our right-standing with Him, we will begin to gain victory over our fear.
The first way we get victory over fear is to gain control of our mind, to know what the truth is and stick to it. The devil doesn't know our thoughts. Only God can know what we're thinking. The devil can put a thought in our mind and the way that he knows if we've received it is if we say it or say something similar. If we do, then he knows he's gotten a foothold and he can come back to us with more thoughts or accusations that are the same as the first. So the answer is to distrust what the devil says. The way to do that is to know absolutely the difference between what God is saying and what the devil tells us. As you know, the one absolute truth is the Bible. That is the one thing we can always trust and never doubt. Read verses about fear and believe them, not the lies the devil tells you. When a fearful thought comes or something that you know is a lie from the devil, speak the Bible verses out loud. That way the devil knows what you believe. Decide once and for all that the devil and fear have run your life for the last time.
The devil's will for you is for you to feel guilty and different and selfish and afraid. God's will is for you to live in victory. In God's world, you are none of those things. He wants you to know the truth about what the devil is trying to do.
Here are some verses:
This will result in your being witnesses to them. But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.
Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so.
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
1 Corinthians 2:16
...But we have the mind of Christ.
You were taught...to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
1 Peter 4:7
...Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray.
Things to say out loud every day (and believe them - all are based on the Bible):
This is a very important part of this. If you say these things 2 to 3 times a day out loud, you will get your mind, your will, your words and your emotions in line with the word of God. I say statements like these every day and it makes a huge difference. You can add or subtract statements according to your situation. Make it as long or as short as you need. You can make any statement about the things that you need to work on and speak it out daily as long as it lines up with the word of God. So if you want to come up with some for your children or your spouse you can do that. Look up all of the verses that pertain to your particular issue and make statements according to those verses.
It's important that you believe the statements. They are all based on scripture so if there is a doubt cropping up while you are saying one of these things, you will need to address it and overcome it - because they are all true. If you have a problem saying any of them, you will know that is something you need to work on believing because these are all true statements, all based on the Bible and applicable to everyone.
I am transformed by the renewing of my mind.
I am acceptable to God. I am acceptable to myself.
I have right standing with God. I will not bow down to fear.
I can do whatever I need to do in my life. I promptly obey God. I don't make decisions based on my feelings.
I am the righteousness of God in Christ. I have gifts and talents and God is using me. I walk in love. Joy flows through me.
God loves me.
I don't have a spirit of fear but I have a spirit of power, a spirit of love and a spirit of a sound mind.
I've been set free. I am free to love, to worship, to believe and to trust with no fear of rejection or being hurt.
Nothing is allowed to touch me or harm me that is against the will of God. Nothing is allowed thwart me or hold me back. I move forward in the perfect will and plan of God with no restrictions or roadblocks, in favor and with His blessing.
No weapon formed against me by my enemy shall prosper. I will refute every tongue that accuses me.
I do not allow the devil to use my spirit as a garbage dump by meditating on negative things that he offers me.
I choose to live with faith, hope and expectancy that God's best is going to happen in my life and the lives around me.
My mind is renewed by the word of God; therefore I forbid thoughts of fear, failure and defeat to inhabit my mind.
I am delivered from the power and authority of darkness. I cast down reasonings and imaginations that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God, and I bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of God's Word. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5
The Lord causes my thoughts to become agreeable to his will. I think good thoughts. I always recognize the truth.
Also, say this out loud at least once a day:
I command my heart, my soul, my mind, my will, my body, my emotions and my words to get in line with the Spirit of God, the word of God and the will of God.
Here's a prayer that I pray out loud before I go to sleep. It is from The Bondage Breaker by Neil T Anderson. I highly recommend this book for gaining victory over the past if that is something that you are struggling with.
I will lie down and sleep in peace, for You alone, Oh Lord, make me dwell in safety. (Psalm 4:8)
Thank you, Lord that you have brought me into your family and have blessed me with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms in Christ. Thank you for providing this time of renewal through sleep. I accept it as part of your perfect plan for your children, and I trust you to guard my mind and my body during my sleep. As I have meditated on you and your truth during this day, I choose to let these thoughts continue in my mind while I am asleep. I commit myself to you as my rock, my fortress, and my resting place. I pray in the strong name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Also it will help to learn to apply the blood of Jesus upon every area of your life. Here is an excerpt from Joyce Meyer's book, "The Word. The Name. The Blood" (Also highly recommended. It includes a prayer that you can say every day:
You may be battling with wounded emotions. If so, put the blood on your emotions so you won’t have to keep being devastated by people who don’t seem to know how to give you what you feel you need from them. If you are hurt in your emotions, plead the blood over your emotions. The life is in the blood; it can drive out death in your emotions. (The last two sentences are my paraphrase).
When I am applying the blood, I usually pray [out loud] this way:
“Father, I come to You in Jesus' name, and I put the blood of Jesus on my life and on all that belongs to me, on all that over which You have made me a steward. I put the blood of Jesus on my mind, my body, my emotions and my will. I believe I am protected by that blood. I put the blood on my children..” [add in anything else you want to say]
Why do we say to pray or say these things out loud? There are three reasons:
- The devil will know where our mind is (the devil has no ability to read our minds). Speaking things out loud puts the devil on notice that we know and believe the truth. Along with that it is very important that we are careful to be aware of what we are saying out loud. We could be telling the devil all of our plans when we don't need to be!
- Saying these biblical things out loud will reinforce God's truth in our minds. The more that we are mindful of speaking biblical, positive things, the more it will be renewed in our minds and the less foothold for fear will be there.
- It increases our faith. The more we say things out loud, the more we believe them and the more they come to fruition.
If you do the things above and continue to do them, you will gain victory over fear. Sometimes we have to “do it afraid”, as Joyce Meyer says. Step out and do what you know to be God’s will and He will help you to overcome fear. There is nothing to be afraid of. We already have the victory. We already have the power. Keep your emotions where they belong. Trust God. Distrust the devil.