There is no way we can have healthy churches in our localities until church leaders strike the needed balance concerning spiritual warfare. There are internal and external forces militating against churches. In most local churches, the enemy is not only outside but have erected strongholds inside that render the church weak from within. Satan and his demonic hosts love to possess territories, even places of worship; the more reason we must do warfare if we are to continuously overcome. Rev. 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21. To overcome is to prevail and Nikao in your territory.
- Scriptural Basis– Matt. 13:26-30; 22:1-10; 2 Cor. 4:3; Jeremiah 5:26
Growth, health and vitality in local churches is warfare. Spiritual growth, conversion, transformation of lives call for divine intervention!
❖ Seeing people get converted and join the local church is a spiritual task.
❖ Spiritually alive, vibrant and living church takes battle.
❖ Having believers that are free from strange spirits is a great task.
❖ Having the altar free from pollutions and godly atmosphere is not a child’s play.
❖ Spiritual growth, discipleship and Christlike living must take root in the church.
❖ Allowing the preeminent presence of the Holy Spirit to overcome fleshly and demonic spirits.
❖ To overcome sin, evil, ungodliness and spiritual coldness in the church calls for warfare.
❖ A Holy Spirit filled church will disgrace Satan and set the oppressed free. Acts 19:13-16
Holy Spirit’s presence, dynamic prayers, watchfulness and fear of the Lord are true marks of a healthy church (Acts 9:31). Victorious and overcomers must the Pastor and people be, if the church must overcome in her locality and the world (1 John 4:4; 1 John 5:4).
- Enemy’s Infiltration of Churches– 1 Peter 5:8; 2 Peter 2; Job 1:6; Jer. 5:26
Too many local churches are stagnant, sick and struggling simply because they have been overcome by the enemy. Demonic infiltrations have rendered many churches incapable of being healthy as a result of enemy’s infiltration:
➢ Corrupting the Pastor or leader with secret sins – 2 Sam. 24:1, 10, 15- 17
➢ False preachers, prophets and prophetess – Rev. 2:15,20-23
➢ Putting unsaved but religious people in position.
➢ Killing the fire of fervent prayers.
➢ The spouse of the minister becoming demonized.
➢ White-washing sins and making them harmless.
➢ Sending his agents to pose as sincere believers to cause havoc.
➢ Members getting demonized and opening the door for penetration.
➢ Infighting, politics and bitterness against each other – James 3:14-16
➢ Deviating from the Bible and arguing the truth.
➢ Introducing immoralities, lust and sexual affairs.
➢ Removing the fire of the Holy Spirit from the pulpit through false doctrines.
➢ Instigating disastrous personal problems in the life of the minister/Pastor.
The devil hates the local church with passion. He therefore seeks to corrupt her from within by every means possible. The devil knew that the local church is the ONLY power that can deal with him and therefore seeks to make her powerless, stagnant, non-growing, cold, lukewarm and retrogressing from within. Exodus 15:9 is Satan’s strategy for every local church. He delegates his demonic agents and attaches them to local churches.
- Steps To A Healthy Church That Overcomes the Enemy – 2 Cor. 10:4-5
Whether we acknowledge it or not, every local church is involved in warfare. The devil wants to incapacitate the local church from being a spiritual force in the community. He wants to turn her to a mere figure. That is why we need to take these steps:
- Repent and rebuff all the open doors for satanic agents.
- Make Christ the central figure in the church.
- Pastor and people must be overcomers – 1 John 4:4; 5:4.
- Bind and quash all demonic activities and infiltrations – John 14:30; Eph. 4:27.
- Research and know more about your church enemy – 2 Cor. 2:11.
- Take a serious prayer stand in holiness and righteousness.
- Rededicate the church to the preeminence of the Holy Spirit and the undiluted word of God.
- Teaching against demonic bewitchment and infiltration regularly.
- Emphasize the true baptism of the Holy Spirit for every worker.
- Fight sin, ungodliness and unstable Christian living regularly.
- Let every one live an overcoming life in private and open.
Overcoming and prevailing churches love, worship God sincerely, are irrevocably committed to each other in love and dedicated to reaching and winning their community for Christ.
“The real conflict is inner conflict. Beyond armies of occupation and the catacombs of concentration camps, there are two irreconciliable enemies in the depth of every soul: good and evil, sin and love. And what use are victories on the battle field if we ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?” – Maximillian Kolbe
Jesus is not coming for a defeated, demon-dominated and barely surviving church, but victorious, prevailing, Jesus-centered and devil-overcoming churches. May you receive the faith, power and enablement to raise a truly prevailing and overcoming church in your community.
BOOKS BY BOLA AKIN-JOHN
- Fruitful and Fulfilling Ministry Today
- Grow the Pastor Grow the Church
- Sexual Purity in Leadership
- Money, Ministers and Ministry Today
- 22 Dynamic Laws of Church Growth
- 25 Pillars of Church Health
- Personal Growth Today
- The Loyal Associate
- Guest Ministers Today
- 120 Strategic Ways to Increase Church Attendance
- Quality and Quantity Growth in Churches
- Strategic Church Planting Today
- Spiritual Warfare for Dynamic Church Growth
- Supernatural Power, Miracles, Signs and Wonders Today
- Church Change
- The Place of Anointing and Administration in Church Growth
- Pulpit Power for Church Growth
- Daily Nourishment for Leaders
- Healthy Leaders Healthy Churches
- Anointing Alone is Not Enough
- 101 Ministry Lessons
- Healthy Home
- Small Middle-Size and Mega Churches
- How to follow well
- Strategic Living
- True success in ministry
- Rise and Fall of Churches / Ministries
- Closing the Back Door
- 25 Indispensable Qualities of a Competent and Credible Minister
- Church Growth Principles of Jesus
- Your Church Your Community
- Your Growth is Your Future
- Frank Talk to Men
- The Cell Church
- Our Churches and His Church
- How to Support & Strengthen your Pastor
- 101 ways to progressively kill a church
- The Real Man in Every Church
- Matured Pastor’s Wife & Female Minister
- Pray and Grow
- Short Course on Family Growth
- Short Course on Church Growth
- Short Course on Wholesome Sexuality
- Short Course on Financial Growth
- Short Course on Personal Growth
- Fundamental Teaching & Doctrines of the Bible
- With Jesus in the School of Money
- Holy Spirit the True Vicar of Life and Ministry
- Five Fold Ministry
- Prophet & Prophetic Ministry Today
- Leading your Church to Lasting Growth
- Your Image is Your Growth
- Conflict and Crisis in Ministry
- Thy Kingdom Come
- DiscipleShift Today
- Healthy Local Church
- Congregational and Cell Church Today
- Heart of a Christian
- Overseer and Senior Pastor Hand book 1
- Abusive Pastor Abusive Churches
- Church Turn-Around Strategies
- Pastor and People’s Price For Church Growth
- Fatherhood and Sonship
- Healthy Woman Minister
- Women In Church Growth Resource
- Kingdom Stewardship
- Overcome At The Gate
- Healthy Pastor, Dangerous Pastor
- Sexually Wholesome Church
- Healthy Pastors, Dangerous Pastor
- Impact-Driven Church
- Clergy Coupes
- Apostolic Ministry
- Evangelist Ministry
- Pastoral Ministry
- Prophetic Ministry
- Teaching Ministry
- Your Church Can Grow in a Healthy Way
- Real Men Resource
- Strong Christian, Strong Christian
- Planting Disciples-Making Church
- Front and back Door of Your Church
- Discipleship Process Recourse
- True Biblical Church Growth is still Possible
- Daily Nourishment 2
- Reaching and Disciplining Children and Youth in today’s Church
- Eschatology and Kingdom Teaching Resource
- I Can’t Breathe