The Devil is sly. Through deception and lies he brings us into bondage. It is a bondage that all too often is brought on by ourselves. And worse, we often can’t see it.devil

A curse or stronghold is devastating to faith and life. It causes problems with family, service, jobs, interaction with God and marriage. It brings emptiness, confusion, depression, illnesses, and even suicide.

A curse or strong hold is simply a lie from Satan: the author of lies. These come from various sources. They come from well-meaning friends and family, our youth, witchcraft and occult, false doctrines in the church, culture, feelings and trauma. These lies become part of the frame work of how we think and decipher the world. These lies lead us to destruction.

Well-meaning friends and family are a significant source. We have no way to filter these because these people are our highest source of trust, especially when we are children. If they say it, it must be true. They say things about who we are or leave us impressions that we do not question. They just slip in without a filter. They say, “You are lazy!”, “You are fat!”, “You are just like your dad!” and so on. They become threads of the garment of who we are. These determine how we look at the world and ourselves. Fight them with the truth and the Word of God. It will take some work and maybe a little help from a Christian friend.

When we are young, we are surrounded by critiques. As a result our self-perception is formed. We learn how to interact with people through these and a lot of quirky habits are developed. If we are skinny and awkward or short, fat and loud, we get a reaction and we notice. We each deal with it differently. But we all know how Jr High and High School affected us. Maybe that is why a lot of us hate reunions!

Some have dabbled in witchcraft or the occult. I have met some who were actually demon possessed through this. Pacts and promises are made under the influence of the demonic. They do this to make a spiritual connection that gives them power, a personally destructive power. They become extremely disturbed and even psychotic.

Another slippery source is the church, much like friends and family, because our guard is down and we trust without reasoning using the scripture. They teach the nature of God, how He is, what He approves of and what He wants. A lie I just ran into from a Christian, from a more legalistic church, was revealing. Through the conversation, I understood that in there subconscious they could not understand that you can love, without an intrinsic reason. They felt to love you need know the person. But love ultimately is an act of will. God loves because that is how He is and now this what we do to glorify Him. So if this is the case love is garnered by merit. But the truth is God is love and that is what he does all the time and this is how we are to be.

I have spoken to a few people recently who were in domineering families and churches which have had deep negative affects on their lives and their relationship with God. It is sad to be cut off from Him due to these lies. But it is often the case. As result some people abandon their faith in Christ due to a church’s screwed up theology and systematic oppression. There is little defense except a good understanding of the Bible. If you are in a church like this; run!

Cultural lies, once the Bible is in hand, are easier to handle. But the culture tempts us and especially lures young Christians. Some of us did not grow up in the arms of the church and have been polluted by the culture we grew up in. One cannot list all the philosophies and lies that are counter to the Bible from the culture. The only way to weed through them is to diligent study of the Word. You may run across an idea in the Bible that is against your deeply held conviction and you shouldn’t be surprised.  You need to throw out the old idea and implant the Word of God. This will require an ongoing process to deny this lie access to your mind.

People follow their feelings and sometimes intuition. These can really mislead a person. These ones are misguided by not using facts or scriptural guidance but an inner sense that truth is as they feel it is. This must be abandoned. This will require hard work to renounce its use and learn to be more analytical and Biblical.

Trauma is an instant opportunity for a stronghold. When traumatized by: being yelled at, car wrecks, break-ups, divorce, war, robberies, rape, abandonment, parentlessness, and the like we are often deeply and negatively affected. An event occurs and we instantly device a set of new trues to explain the event and prevent its occurrence again. This is to avoid pain and the traumas effects. After a car wreck, one may feel uncomfortable in cars or it may affect their driving. If abandoned, a person may believe they cannot trust people. If there is a broken promise of love, one may, for protection, no longer be trusting in relationships and as a result never be able to give or receive love per God’s plan. As you can see there are many possibilities.

Now how to undo it. First is to study your Bible, especially the New Testament and in particular the letters to the church. Where the new ideas contradict your current understanding: Change your thinking. Renounce your old belief in prayer and ask forgiveness and thank Him. Refresh your mind regularly with the new truth. Learn to see from God’s perspective. If something is wrong with you legitimately make a plan to change.

Renounce old vows and commitments to the occult and other religious systems. Our only allegiance is to Christ. We only have one master.

Ditch negative thinking. Why see everything from the point of view of problems. See a problem, attack it but leave the rest alone. For example in relationships. One may do something wrong but refuse to judge them. Just deal with the issue and leave the rest of who they are intact: someone loved by God and who is good and valuable.

Use the spiritual Kata: 1) Jesus is here 2) Jesus loves me 3) Jesus I can trust you and 4) You are doing something wonderful. Say this to yourself often in prayer. It will become very important to you.

Now many of these ideas will creep back. You need to recognize them and refute them in your mind and in prayer.

Also, note fear and confusion is from the Devil. If you want to know his presence…this is what he smells like. He is called the deceiver and a sure sign he is involved is the confusion you feel and the fear that grips you. As you since this counteract this with the truth which is readily available, prayer and the perfect love of our Father. Pray and get clarity. His people are bold as lions! We are overcomers! We can see clearly.

You need to state the truth to yourself regularly.

I will follow up with a list of things that the Bible says about us who believe unto obedience. These tell how we are to see ourselves.

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