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Friday, December 13, 2013

What It Means to be Filled with the Holy Spirit # 44

"Neither Give Place to the devil" (continued)

Now, the enemy of God has not been asleep during Abraham's struggle, for Genesis 21:22 tells us that the Philistines are on the move. We believe from the context of the Scripture that satan moved in with the Philistines just "at that time" because, from all appearances, Abraham seemed to be at his weakest spiritually; but satan had made a fatal error! Because 2 Corinthians 12, God declares: "My strength is made perfect in weakness." What seemed like weakness to the satanic forces was really strength in God's sight, for Abraham had become wholly dependent upon the Lord. No, it was Abraham's strong natural man that was no longer strong and the enemy was not going to find any ground, any place, in Abraham this time. In fact, satan was going to lose the ground he had gained!

So, just when Abraham seemed to be at his weakest, satan made his move; the Philistine king and the commander of his army moved to make an agreement with Abraham - and satan was about to be taken in his own craftiness. Now if we follow these Scriptures closely, in Genesis 21:22-34, we will find that the Philistine king and the commander of the army, under the inspiration of satan, were really trying to bring Abraham under their rule, and the king and the commander of his army said to Abraham:

"God is with thee in all that thou doest: now therefore swear unto me here by God that thou wilt not deal falsely with me, nor with my son, nor with my son's son; but according to the kindness that I have done unto thee, thou shalt do unto me, and o the land wherein thou hast sojourned."

And Abraham said, "I will swear."

When Abraham said, "I will swear," he was not just meekly submitting to the Philistines, for in the next breath he fearlessly "reproved" Abimelech because of a well of water which Abimelech's servants had violently  taken away. The Septuagint Bible uses a better word than "reproved,"  the Septuagint says, Abraham "expostulated with Abimelech;" in other words, there was a vehement demand and a great force empowering Abraham's words, and this force was the Holy Spirit of God.

Thus, when Abraham said, "I will swear," he was "in the Spirit." He was no longer being ruled by his natural man, he was living in the control of the Holy Spirit. And he said, "I will swear." And because he was "in the Spirit," these words were not only spoken to the Philistines, but they were spoken to the devil himself.

"I will swear." - You can be assured, I will no longer deal falsely with you as I did when I allowed my natural man to jeopardize "The Seed."

"I will swear." - You can be assured I will speak "The Truth," I will give no place to "the lie" of the devil, who is the father of "the lie." I will give no place to "the lie" of the devil whose lying iniquitous spirit is always at work to seduce and convince God's people to partake of "the lie" - "the lie" which is always seeking to seduce and convince God's people that the natural man and his ways can become perfect, that the natural man can in some way please God.

"I will swear." - You can be assured, I will have no further part in "the lie," I will only live in the reality of "The Truth" which is Christ, and which Is in Christ, the Messiah, the Anointed One.

Then, Abraham demanded that Abimelech give back the ground he had unjustly and violently taken; for there was more than a well of water at stake here, the enemy was after the inheritance of God's people. Abimelech then began to make excuses, and he declared that he had no known this; but as usual the lying spirit of the devil was behind these words, for Abimelech is an agent of the one who is the father of "the lie".

However, Abraham was not in total control of the situation, the Philistines and their antichrist activities were no longer a threat; from here on, the Philistines had no power over Abraham. And is is because Abraham was walking in the way of the Cross, the way of self-denial: - Abraham would not allow his natural man to control him any longer. Therefore Abraham empowered by God's Spirit, took back the ground these antichrist agents had gained; he took back the inheritance of God's people.

From the beginning of Abraham's walk, God had said, "Unto thy seed will I give this land" (Genesis 12:7).And God commanded Abraham to walk the length and the breadth of the land of promise; which speaks not only of the nation of Israel's right to the literal land, but it also points to the full inheritance of those who are in Christ. The antichrist spirit of satan had tried to take the inheritance of God's people and failed. This attempt to steal the inheritance of God's people failed because Abraham, through the power of the Cross of Christ, walked in faith the length and the breadth of the land of the Promise. Abraham could walk in the power of the Cross because, in God's sight, the Lamb was slain before the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:20, 21).

The enemy failed to ultimately overcome Abraham because of the work of the Cross in Abraham's life; Abraham had come to the place where he was not looking for an inheritance in the earth realm, he was not looking for that which would satisfy the natural man. He was not looking for the wealth, health, power and influence which are so in demand in the churches today. No! No! No! Through faith in all that Christ is, "He looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God" (Hebrews 11:10). Thus, Abraham and Sarah joined the ranks o all the other overcomers of every age who through faith "...desire a better country (a true home), that is an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for He hath prepared for them a city ... and the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the Light thereof" (Hebrews 11:16; Revelation 21:23).

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 45 - "The Natural Man Receiveth Not the Things of the Spirit of God")

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