Summary: The spiritual battle for your life is a battle for your heart where the Spirit of God abides.
January 23, 2011
Text: Isaiah 61:1-3
Subject: Spiritual Warfare
Title: The Battle for Your Heart
I want to begin today by reassuring you of who you are “in Christ”.
1 Corinthians 5:17, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! Everybody say, “I’m a new creation…and that makes me precious to God…”
Ephesians 2:6, And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus… Everybody say, “I’m seated with Jesus in the heavenly realms…and that makes me precious to God…”
Luke 10:19, I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you… Everybody say, “I have the authority of Christ…and that makes me precious to God…”
Mark 10:22-24, 22 “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23 “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours… Everybody say, “If I have faith in God, then whatever I ask for, I can believe that He will do it…and that makes me precious to God…”
All of those wonderful promises from the Lord take us to where I want to be this morning. We have all these promises and God intends for us to have them to their fullest. But there is a battle that is constantly taking place in you. It is the battle for your heart. The enemy who comes but to kill, steal and destroy knows that if he can get you to doubt in your mind, then that doubt will settle into your heart and you will never experience the abundant life that Jesus came that you might have. And that is exactly what he wants to do in your life.
Read Isaiah 61:1-3…
Lord, open the eyes of my heart to see and understand…
Open my spiritual ears to hear and believe…
And open my mind to the revelation You are about to give… In Jesus’ name…
As a child of the Living God, you can win the battle for your heart.
I. YOU CAN WIN THE BATTLE FOR YOUR HEART BECAUSE YOUR HEART IS THE DWELLING PLACE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT 1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me… I really want you to see just how special you are to God. These are the verses Jesus read from in the synagogue in His hometown when He began His ministry in Luke 4. Notice that the very first thing that the prophet spoke was not about the ministry, but about the minister – the one on whom the Holy Spirit would rest. It was the anointing that made Jesus who He was. Now for Jesus the Holy Spirit anointing came as a dove, the symbol of God’s power coming upon Him for ministry. Jesus didn’t need to be saved – He is the Savior. For the rest of us, the coming of the Holy Spirit takes place when you are born again. When you become a child of the King, where does the transformation take place? It is in your heart. Ezekiel prophesied of a time when, 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh… (Ezekiel 36) That tender heart for the things of God comes when you become an adopted child of the King. Romans 8:17 tells us just how special you are. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. Now bear with me just for a few minutes while we get everything in place. Look at Romans 8:10, But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your (Your what?) spirit is alive because of righteousness. Romans 5:5 Where does that take place? 5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. OK, now let’s organize our thoughts. 1) If you have trusted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, then His Spirit is in you. 2) God has given you a new spirit – your spirit is alive – you are a new creation 3) God has poured out His love – by giving you the Holy Spirit – into your hearts. Everybody with me so far? Everything is well and good – right? Well it would be except for one thing… the minute that you were saved you were drawn into a battle. You have an enemy, as I mentioned earlier who wants to kill the new man that you are, who wants to steal every promise from you that God has given for you to have, and who wants to destroy your faith in order to keep you from being who you are intended to be “in Christ”. Ephesians 6:12, For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. This enemy of yours is not alone. He has an army of vile demons that is bent on destroying you. Revelation 12 says that the dragon swept a third of the stars out of the heavens with his tail and flung them to earth. According to one website there are 300 sextillion stars in the sky. (for perspective multiply 3 trillion by 100 million. If you do the math and figure that 300 sextillion is two-thirds of the number of spirits that were originally created then that must mean there are 150 sextillion demons spirits that are here to frustrate you in your walk with the Lord. But remember this, you are special to God. He has placed His Spirit in you so that when He looks at you He sees a reflection of Himself. The Holy Spirit has set up a stronghold in your heart. Now where do you think that satan is going to try to attack in order to defeat you? He will have to pull down your stronghold – attack your heart. And he does that by speaking to your mind in order to create doubt in your heart. Every day the constant assault goes like this… “if you were really a man/woman of God then you would never have done that… God doesn’t really care for you or else why would He let you be sick, suffer loneliness, experience pain, struggle financially… when was the last time God healed you? When was the last time He provide for you… when was the last time He delivered you…? And the assault goes on and on. Your enemy is relentless to the point that you begin to think that your inability to hear from God, to receive from God, to be empowered from God is all your fault – you’re no good – your heart must be bad. But the devil is a liar and the father of all lies. Your heart is good. Everybody say, “My heart is good…” It’s good because the Holy Spirit is dwelling there. It can be no other way. God is good and cannot be contrary to His nature. Your flesh may be weak, but your heart is good.