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Summary: This is our introductory message on pulling down strongholds and we will be talking about a strategy that will make us more effective in that area. People who have bondages and especially when dealing with people who can't/won't endure sound doctrine.

Pulling Down Strongholds

This is our introductory message on pulling down strongholds and we will be talking about a strategy that will make us more effective in that area. Especially when dealing with people who can't/won't endure sound doctrine.

In general I think about negative strongholds in 4 major areas:

Personal stronghold in an unbeliever

Personal stronghold in a believer

Corporate/societal - when a business or school system embraces ungodly world views.

Regional/national - Powers of darkness ruling over an area. This is more focused on the demonic than on people. It is about spiritual rulers in high places.

Tonight we will talk about strongholds in unbelievers that work to keep them in sin and darkness..

PPT 2-3 scripture

2Ti 4:1 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;

2Ti 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

2Ti 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

2Ti 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

I want you to notice the word endure. This is how the NIV version translates verse 3:

PPT 4

2Ti 4:3 For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.

Endure = put up with. When we say we won't put up with something it usually means we will openly and with vigor resist it. We won't accept it, we won't allow it, we will fight it with everything we have. This text teaches that people will push away from sound doctrine with hostility. And will go shopping for doctrines and teachings that appeal to them, they will go looking for what they want.

It is as if they have bug zappers and mosquito nets that prevent truth from getting anywhere near them. Satan has open and immediate access and control over what they hear. Mark 4. Says that when the word is sown immediately the word is stolen by the birds, which Jesus later explains is the devil. When a person immediately brushes off spiritual truth, and fights against it, that is evidence of demonic activity and a spiritual stronghold.

PPT 5 Notes from John Gill commentary on 2 Tim 4:3

Gill - "they cannot receive it, nor bear to hear it, turn their backs on it, express their indignation at it, and treat it not only with neglect, but with ridicule and contempt:"

They are openly hostile to truth. Here is an example of not being able to endure sound doctrine from the book of Acts:

PPT 6- 8 scripture text

Ac 7:54 When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.

Ac 7:55 But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,

Ac 7:56 And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.

Ac 7:57 Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,

Ac 7:58 And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man' feet, whose name was Saul.

Ac 7:59 And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.

Ac 7:60 And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

Here is how those who could not endure sound doctrine responded:

They gnashed on him with their teeth. Their anger boiled over. When you gnash at someone with your teeth you are snarling at them, you are ready to explode, you can't stand to hear another word of what they are saying.

They shouted over him. Think of a political rally where one group tries to shout so loud the other group can't be heard. That is what the Jews were doing to Steven (They cried out with a loud voice)

They stopped their ears. (They refused to listen, putting their fingers in their ears so the sound couldn't even get through to them.)

They ran toward him and threw him out of their city. They said people who believe like you do we don't want living in our city.

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