1 COR 5
11 But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler,or a drunkard, or a swindler -not even to eat with such a one.
http://www.biblestudytools.com/nas/1-corinthians/5.html (With Strong’s)
Chapter 5 Matthew Henry Commentary
In this chapter the apostle, I. Blames them for their indulgence in the case of the incestuous person, and orders him to be excommunicated, and delivered to Satan (v. 1-6).
- He exhorts them to Christian purity, by purging out the old leaven (v. 7, v. 8). And, III. Directs them to shun even the common conversation of Christians who were guilty of any notorious and flagitious wickedness (v. 9 to the end).
Verses 1-6 Here the apostle states the case; and,I. Lets them know what was the common or general report concerning them, that one of their community was guilty of fornication, v. 1. It was told in all places, to their dishonour, and the reproach of Christians.
And it was the more reproachful because it could not be denied.
Note, The heinous sins of professed Christians are quickly noted and noised abroad.
We should walk circumspectly, for many eyes are upon us, and many mouths will be opened against us if we fall into any scandalous practice.
This was not a common instance of fornication, but such as was not so much as named among the Gentiles, that a man should have his father’s wife—either marry her while his father was alive, or keep her as his concubine, either when he was dead or while he was alive. In either of these cases, his criminal conversation with her might be called fornication; but had his father been dead, and he, after his decease, married to her, it had been incest still, but neither fornication nor adultery in the strictest sense. But to marry her, or keep her as a concubine, while his father was alive, though he had repudiated her, or she had deserted him, whether she were his own mother or not, was incestuous fornication:Scelus incredibile (as Cicero calls it), et prater unum in omni vitâ inauditum (Orat. pro Cluent.), when a woman had caused her daughter to be put away, and was married to her husband.
Incredible wickedness! says the orator; such I never heard of in all my life besides. Not that there were no such instances of incestuous marriages among the heathens; but, whenever they happened, they gave a shock to every man of virtue and probity among them. They could not think of them without horror, nor mention them without dislike and detestation.
Yet such a horrible wickedness was committed by one in the church of Corinth, and, as is probable, a leader of one of the factions among them, a principal man.
Note, The best churches are, in this state of imperfection, liable to very great corruptions. Is it any wonder when so horrible a practice was tolerated in an apostolical church, a church planted by the great apostle of the Gentiles?
- He greatly blames them for their own conduct hereupon: They were puffed up (v. 2), they gloried, 1. Perhaps on account of this very scandalous person.
He might be a man of great eloquence, of deep science, and for this reason very greatly esteemed, and followed, and cried up, by many among them. They were proud that they had such a leader. Instead of mourning for his fall, and their own reproach upon his account, and renouncing him and removing him from the society, they continued to applaud him and pride themselves in him.
Note, Pride or self-esteem often lies at the bottom of our immoderate esteem of others, and this makes us as blind to their faults as to our own.
It is true humility that will bring a man to a sight and acknowledgement of his errors. The proud man either wholly overlooks or artfully disguises his faults, or endeavours to transform his blemishes into beauties.
Those of the Corinthians that were admirers of the incestuous person’s gifts could overlook or extenuate his horrid practices. Or else, 2. It may intimate to us that some of the opposite party were puffed up.
They were proud of their own standing, and trampled upon him that fell. Note, It is a very wicked thing to glory over the miscarriages and sins of others.
We should lay them to heart, and mourn for them, not be puffed up with them.
Probably this was one effect of the divisions among them. The opposite party made their advantage of this scandalous lapse, and were glad of the opportunity. Note, It is a sad consequence of divisions among Christians that it makes them apt to rejoice in iniquity.
The sins of others should be our sorrow. Nay, churches should mourn for the scandalous behaviour of particular members, and, if they be incorrigible, should remove them.
He that had done this wicked deed should have been taken away from among them.
III. We have the apostle’s direction to them how they should now proceed with this scandalous sinner.
He would have him excommunicated and delivered to Satan (v. 3-5); as absent in body, yet present in spirit, he had judged already as if he had been present;that is, he had, by revelation and the miraculous gift of discerning vouchsafed him by the Spirit, as perfect a knowledge of the case, and had hereupon come to the following determination, not without special authority from the Holy Spirit.
He says this to let them know that, though he was at a distance, he did not pass an unrighteous sentence, nor judge without having as full cognizance of the case as if he had been on the spot. Note, Those who would appear righteous judges to the world will take care to inform them that they do not pass sentence without full proof and evidence. The apostle adds, him who hath so done this deed.
The fact was not only heinously evil in itself, and horrible to the heathens, but there were some particular circumstances that greatly aggravated the offence. He had so committed the evil as to heighten the guilt by the manner of doing it. Perhaps he was a minister, a teacher, or a principal man among them. By this means the church and their profession were more reproached.
Note, In dealing with scandalous sinners, not only are they to be charged with the fact, but the aggravating circumstances of it.
Paul had judged that he should be delivered to Satan (v. 5), and this was to be done in the name of Christ, with the power of Christ, and in a full assembly, where the apostle would be also present in spirit, or by his spiritual gift of discerning at a distance.
Some think that this is to be understood of a mere ordinary excommunication, and that delivering him to Satan for the destruction of the flesh is only meant of disowning him, and casting him out of the church, that by this means he might be brought to repentance, and his flesh might be mortified.
Christ and Satan divide the world: and those that live in sin, when they profess relation to Christ, belong to another master, and by excommunication should be delivered up to him; and this in the name of Christ.
Note, Church-censures are Christ’s ordinances, and should be dispensed in his name. It was to be done also when they were gathered together, in full assembly. The more public the more solemn, and the more solemn the more likely to have a good effect on the offender. Note, Church-censures on notorious and incorrigible sinners should be passed with great solemnity.
Those who sin in this manner are to be rebuked before all, that all may fear, 1 Tim. 5:20 .
***Others think the apostle is not to be understood of mere excommunication, but of a miraculous power or authority they had of delivering a scandalous sinner into the power of Satan,
to have bodily diseases inflicted, and to be tormented by him with bodily pains,
which is the meaning of the destruction of the flesh.***
In this sense the destruction of the flesh has been a happy occasion of the salvation of the spirit. It is probable that this was a mixed case. It was an extraordinary instance: and the church was to proceed against him by just censure; the apostle, when they did so, put forth an act of extraordinary power, and gave him up to Satan, nor for his destruction, but for his deliverance, at least for the destruction of the flesh, that the soul might be saved.
Note, The great end of church-censures is the good of those who fall under them, their spiritual and eternal good. It is that their spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus, v. 5. Yet it is not merely a regard to their benefit that is to be had in proceeding against them.
For, IV. He hints the danger of contagion from this example: Your glorying is not good. Know you not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? The bad example of a man in rank and reputation is very mischievous, spreads the contagion far and wide. It did so, probably, in this very church and case: see 2 Co. 12:21 . They could not be ignorant of this. The experience of the whole world was for it; one scabbed sheep infects a whole flock. A little leaven will quickly spread the ferment through a great lump. Note, Concern for their purity and preservation should engage Christian churches to remove gross and scandalous sinners.
Verses 7-8 Here the apostle exhorts them to purity, by purging out the old leaven.
In this observe, I. The advice itself, addressed either, 1. To the church in general; and so purging out the old leaven, that they might be a new lump, refers to the putting away from themselves that wicked person, v. 13.
Note, Christian churches should be pure and holy, and not bear such corrupt and scandalous members. They are to be unleavened, and should endure no such heterogeneous mixture to sour and corrupt them.
Or, 2. To each particular member of the church. And so it implies that they should purge themselves from all impurity of heart and life, especially from this kind of wickedness, to which the Corinthians were addicted to a proverb.
See the argument at the beginning. This old leaven was in a particular manner to be purged out, that they might become a new lump.
Note, Christians should be careful to keep themselves clean, as well as purge polluted members out of their society.
And they should especially avoid the sins to which they themselves were once most addicted, and the reigning vices of the places and the people where they live.
They were also to purge themselves from malice and wickedness—all ill-will and mischievous subtlety.
This is leaven that sours the mind to a great degree.
It is not improbable that this was intended as a check to some who gloried in the scandalous behaviour of the offender, both out of pride and pique.
Note, Christians should be careful to keep free from malice and mischief.
Love is the very essence and life of the Christian religion.
It is the fairest image of God, for God is love (1 Jn. 4:16 ), and therefore it is no wonder if it be the greatest beauty and ornament of a Christian.
But malice is murder in its principles: He that hates his brother is a murderer (1 Jn. 3:15 ), he bears the image and proclaims him the offspring of him who was a murderer from the beginning, Jn. 8:44 .
How hateful should every thing be to a Christian that looks like malice and mischief.
- The reason with which this advice is enforced: For Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us. This is the great doctrine of the gospel. The Jews, after they had killed the Passover, kept the feast of unleavened bread.
So must we; not for seven days only, but all our days.
We should die with our Saviour to sin, be planted into the likeness of his death by mortifying sin, and into the likeness of his resurrection by rising again to newness of life, and that internal and external.
We must have new hearts and new lives.
Note, The whole life of a Christian must be a feast of unleavened bread. His common conversation and his religious performances must be holy.
He must purge out the old leaven, and keep the feast of unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. He must be without guilt in his conduct towards God and man.
And the more there is of sincerity in our own profession, the less shall we censure that of others.
Note, On the whole, The sacrifice of our Redeemer is the strongest argument with a gracious heart for purity and sincerity.
How sincere a regard did he show to our welfare, in dying for us! and how terrible a proof was his death of the detestable nature of sin, and God’s displeasure against it!
Heinous evil, that could not be expiated but with the blood of the Son of God! And shall a Christian love the murderer of his Lord? God forbid.
Some think this was an epistle written to them before, which is lost. Yet we have lost nothing by it, the Christian revelation being entire in those books of scripture which have come down to us, which are all that were intended by God for the general use of Christians, or he could and would in his providence have preserved more of the writings of inspired men.
Some think it is to be understood of this very epistle, that he had written this advice before he had full information of their whole case, but thought it needful now to be more particular.
And therefore on this occasion he tells them that if any man called a brother, any one professing Christianity, and being a member of a Christian church, were a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, that they should not keep company with him, nor so much as eat with such a one.
They were to avoid all familiarity with him; they were to have no commerce with him; they were to have no commerce with him: but, that they might shame him, and bring him to repentance, must disclaim and shun him.
Note, Christians are to avoid the familiar conversation of fellow-Christians that are notoriously wicked, and under just censure for their flagitious practices.
Such disgrace the Christian name.
They may call themselves brethren in Christ, but they are not Christian brethren.
They are only fit companions for the brethren in iniquity; and to such company they should be left, till they mend their ways and doings.
- How he limits this advice. He does not forbid the Christians the like commerce with scandalously wicked heathens.
He does not forbid their eating nor conversing with the fornicators of this world, etc. They know no better.
They profess no better. The gods they serve, and the worship they render to many of them, countenance such wickedness.
“You must needs go out of the world if you will have no conversation with such men. Your Gentile neighbours are generally vicious and profane; and it is impossible, as long as you are in the world, and have any worldly business to do, but you must fall into their company.
This cannot be wholly avoided.’’ Note, Christians may and ought to testify more respect to loose worldlings than to loose Christians.
This seems a paradox. Why should we shun the company of a profane or loose Christian, rather than that of a profane or loose heathen?
III. The reason of this limitation is here assigned. It is impossible the one should be avoided.
Christians must have gone out of the world to avoid the company of loose heathens. But this was impossible, as long as they had business in the world.
While they are minding their duty, and doing their proper business, God can and will preserve them from contagion.
Besides, they carry an antidote against the infection of their bad example, and are naturally upon their guard.
They are apt to have a horror at their wicked practices.
But the dread of sin wears off by familiar converse with wicked Christians.
Our own safety and preservation are a reason of this difference. But, besides, heathens were such as Christians had nothing to do to judge and censure, and avoid upon a censure passed; for they are without (v. 12), and must be left to God’s judgment, v. 13.
But, as to members of the church, they are within, are professedly bound by the laws and rules of Christianity, and not only liable to the judgment of God, but to the censures of those who are set over them, and the fellow-members of the same body, when they transgress those rules.
Every Christian is bound to judge them unfit for communion and familiar converse.
They are to be punished, by having this mark of disgrace put upon them, that they may be shamed, and, if possible, reclaimed thereby: and the more because the sins of such much more dishonor God than the sins of the openly wicked and profane can do.
The church therefore is obliged to clear herself from all confederacy with them, or conance at them, and to bear testimony against their wicked practices.
Note, Though the church has nothing to do with those without, it must endeavor to keep clear of the guilt and reproach of those within.
- How he applies the argument to the case before him: “Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person, v. 13. Cast him out of your fellowship, and avoid his conversation.’
DELIVERANCE FROM BONDAGE IS YOUR CHURCH DOING THIS?
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N BONDAGE http://www.freeinthelordministries.com/documents/INBONDAGE.pdf
WHEN WILL YOU ASK JESUS TO SET YOU FREE?
Published by The KEY Ministries Publications
3201 West Pipeline Road
Euless TX 76040-6201
Free in the Lord Ministries
3201 West Pipeline Rd
Euless, TX 76040-6201
E-mail: email@example.com Websites: http://www.freeinthelordministries.com
© 2010 Free in the Lord Ministries
After becoming acquainted through e-mail and phone, Paul and his wife, Hannah, visited our ministry a few years ago. Although they had been living in South Carolina for quite some time, had a nice home with acreage and were basically settled in retirement, they decided the Lord would have them sell out and move to Euless to be a part of our local body and ministry. They presently live on campus in a small apartment and are a vital part of the ministry here.
It has been my blessing and joy to watch them eagerly received ministry and see the change in their lives. Paul, with his website http://www.freeinthelordministries.com, is a tremendous advocate of the power of personal deliverance and is a walking testimony of such.
Hear Paul’s heart cry in this book. I know he has written this because he has found this powerful work of God in his personal life. What he is saying is so true and effective if people will receive what the Lord has provided for true change in their lives.
May this word come into your life as light and liberty.
Stephen Bell, Pastor/Director
The KEY Ministries
Joel 3:13 – “Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, tread, for the wine press is full”. John 4:35 – It is time to cry aloud that the time and age of harvest is now. God has rendered judgment on America and the world. It is time for people suffering in bondage to believe and accept that deliverance ministry is biblically valid in these end times. It is long past time to stop denying what Jesus did in His earthly ministry and commands His disciples to do today. (Matt 28:20)
Deliverance ministry reveals the realities of what Satan and his demonic forces have done and are doing to kill, steal from and destroy a person. Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil and to “set the captives free”. He is the only Deliverer. There is no other way to be set free except through Jesus.
Why all the suffering? Why all the pain? Why all the rejection, shame, bitterness and unforgiveness? Why all the sickness, disease and twisted bodies? Why all the religious confusion and competition between professing believers? What has Satan done? How did all this happen? Can something be done?
In MATT 10:1 and MARK 16:17 Jesus gives clear instructions about “unclean spirits”. The 12 disciples were instructed in LUKE 9:1-2 what to do in their ministry. Don W. Basham wrote that “Christians have problems: profound desperate problems which often seem to defy solution. Every sincere Christian struggles faithfully against Satan’s attempt to overpower the believer. Prayer goes unanswered, the old self refuses to stay dead, temper and anger remain, shameful appetites continue, fears and anxieties continue”.
Most believers seemingly learn to live with these situations and never get the real freedom Jesus wants them to have. Somehow evil spirits literally invade the personality of the person and exercise some dominion and control from within the person and feed those fears, which defy the sincere prayers of believers.
Many sincerely believe that if they ignore Satan he will just go away…not true. We are to oppose him and he will flee from us. We are never to take a cavalier attitude towards Satan. 1 PET 5:8-9, JAMES 4:7 and 2 COR 1:9,11 give clear warning to us.
Out of ignorance and instilled fear some don’t believe in demons and the ministry of deliverance, which Jesus commissioned. Remember that fear of any kind comes directly from Satan. Stephen Bell of KEY Ministries states that a person, realizing and admitting that he has personal demonization, is very humbled and under some degree of trauma. Thus it is difficult for someone in a place of authority or reputation to submit to deliverance ministry. Pride and shame enter the scene. Remember that Satan and his demons are deceivers, and by their cunning have convinced most of the Body of Christ that a Christian cannot have a demon or be demonized. The deception continues through sermons, books and personal teachings. The Bible does not teach that a sheep of the house of Israel cannot have a demon.
You cannot crucify a demon or put him to death… scripture says you can only get rid of him by “casting him out in Jesus’ name”.
A true Christian is “owned by Jesus Christ”. Never say that one who is a Christian has a life free of all demonic bondage. A sincere Christian can be tormented or afflicted by demons in some area of his life and yet praise and worship God. A sincere Christian can be tormented by some physical illness coming from spiritual roots. Most of the people from whom Jesus expelled demons led ordinary lives in most ways. They suffered in some specific area of their life with a physical infirmity or had to deal with some uncontrollable or unhealthy appetite. Christians today, who are normal, successful, healthy and faithful to God, are beset by haunting fear or compulsive appetite (lust, greed, etc) being caused by the presence of some evil spirit. When they submit to deliverance the process of freedom begins.
What does the average Christian do with these torments? They turn to drugs, therapies, medical treatments, continual prayers at the altar and other remedies.
Can a Christian have a demon? YES they can and they do. There are no exceptions. Getting rid of demons is a life-changing, life-long walk with Jesus
MARK 1:39 – “And He went through all Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and expelling the demons “
MARK 16:17 – “And signs shall attend those who believe, even such as those. By making use of My name they shall expel demons”
Derek Prince said “Jesus Himself was extremely practical in His dealings with demons. He emphasized the unique significance of this ministry of expelling demons when He said, ‘But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, surely the Kingdom of God has come upon you’ (MATT 12:28). There are two kingdoms we deal with: God’s Kingdom and the Kingdom of Satan.
The prophets in the Old Testament performed many miracles that foreshadowed the ministry of Jesus: sick were healed, dead raised, provision for the multitudes and God’s power to control the forces of nature. No record exists of casting out demons until Jesus came on the scene. The contemporary Church has largely ignored this Bible truth. Its evangelical mission fails to include the casting out of demons, which makes their ministry incomplete. It is unscriptural to pray for a sick person and not be prepared to cast out demons. Jesus never separated the two.
Jesus dealt with the demonized person, not the demon in the person. He quieted the demons. He never put a person out of the synagogue. When a demon manifests in a church member today he is usually escorted into the basement or out of the building rather than having the demon cast out.
Study these verses concerning the ministry of Jesus: MARK 1:32-34 and LUKE 4:40-41. Jesus healed all that came to Him. He cast demons out of many people, some never realizing that their sicknesses were being caused by demons. Most of the people Jesus ministered to were just everyday, ordinary familytype folks. They were just “normal” people. Yet demons had gained access into some area of their personalities, rendering them to not be in full control of themselves.
MATTHEW 10:7-8 – Jesus commissioned His disciples for their ministry. “And as you go, preach, saying ‘the Kingdom of heaven is at hand’. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, CAST OUT DEMONS”. Can anything be clearer in God’s Word for today’s church and believers?
Situations to consider in your need for Deliverance Ministry
- something out of control in your life
- angry without reason, contentious, critical, bitter
- experience noticeable “mood swings”
- health problems that will not go away
- fearful, anxiety, insecurity, rejection, confusion
- feel oppressed, put down, ridiculed, hurtful teasing
- difficulty with praying, Bible study, praising, worshipping
- living in the past or living for the future
- difficulty in maintaining your Christian walk
- financial or family problems, addictions of any kind
- spiritual or mental torment, mental illness, hearing voices, depression
- denial that a believer can have a demon or be cursed by demons
Most of the time a person reaching out for deliverance has come to a point of desperation in their efforts to obtain peace, stability and healing in their lives. The realization of confronting the ministry of deliverance is humbling and can be traumatic.
Many come for deliverance ministry after trying a multitude of remedies before they can honestly say that they are being affected by some demonic power. Without discernment of an evil spirit at work the person may only see the symptoms but not be able to get to and remove the root cause of the affliction.
Does every person need Deliverance? Yes they do. Joshua conquered the Promised Land one city at a time. Deliverance is a life-changing process that begins with admitting the need for help. This is spiritual. This is the greater part of the ministry of Jesus…healing and casting out demons.
Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil. Exposing demons and breaking curses is part of that spiritual work. The bondage in your life can end if you desire to be set free. Jesus delivers. He is the deliverer.
Part of the punishment that Jesus sustained on the Cross was for our forgiveness. ISA 53:4-5 (vs 5) “But He was pierced through for our transgressions…” His chastisement (or punishment) for our peace was upon Him. Jesus was punished that we might be forgiven. When our sins remain unforgiven we will not have peace in our lives. God will not make peace with sin.
The issue of having unforgiveness in our lives is the major barrier to receiving deliverance. We have encountered numerous situations with people seeking to be delivered but who could not receive because of unforgiveness. The person who chooses unforgiveness remains in torment and receives no deliverance. The demonic spirits are given the “legal right” to enter when a person refuses to forgive.
Many infirmities or personal problems are rooted in unforgiveness, even blocking or hindering one’s prayers. Forgiveness requires the power and work of the Holy Spirit.
Some symptoms of unforgiveness to consider:
- anger, outbursts, temper tantrums, over-reactions
- criticism or judgment, constant negative observations
- jealousy or envy, self-centeredness
- impatience, being driven
- broken relationships
- heaviness and depression
- Who do we forgive: people – everyone, no exceptions
- so called “acts of God” (He is sovereign in all things)
How does one forgive? By making a conscious CHOICE! What price is peace? In time the emotions will settle, the pain will go away and peace will come.
Speak this aloud: “Father in Heaven, I come to you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. I believe He is Your Son. I believe He has risen from the grave and now sits at Your right hand ever interceding for me. I repent of not forgiving, of holding bitterness in my heart and being upset about other people, situations and even myself. As You so willingly forgive, I too choose to forgive. I ask You, Lord, to bring to my mind everyone and everything I need to forgive.
In the Name of Jesus Christ, I forgive ( name people as they come to you )
I declare my forgiveness of every person I have named and will continue to consider them forgiven from this time and forevermore. In the Name of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, I forgive ( name hurtful or traumatic situations )
Oh God, I confess any and all bitterness toward You. I know You do not make mistakes and are perfect in all Your ways. Help me to see that more and more.
In the Name of Jesus Christ, I renounce the spirits of bitterness, anger, hatred, violence, retaliation, murder and memory recall. I command these unclean spirits to leave me now! I will restore anything I owe to anyone as you give strength and provision. I forgive anything that is owed to me by anyone.
In the Name of Jesus Christ, I receive healing in my physical body and command every spirit of infirmity and disease to leave me now! You unclean spirits have no ground to stay. Leave, now!
I ask You, Jesus Christ, to pour the balm of healing into my wounded spirit and I receive healing for a broken heart that has come because of hurts, disappointments and abuses. Thank You, Father and Son through Your Holy Spirit. AMEN!
Permission to reprint by Stephen Bell, the KEY Ministries, Euless, Texas
Many use “full gospel church” to promote themselves. But what is “full-gospel”? The scriptures make very clear what Jesus commissioned his disciples to do. It is not complicated.
- go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel
- preach the Kingdom of heaven
- heal the sick
- cleanse the lepers
- cast out demons
- authority over unclean spirits
- people should repent
- cast out many demons
- anoint the sick with oil and heal
- preach the gospel
- cast out demons
- speak with new tongues
- lay hands on sick
- preach the gospel
- proclaim release (freedom) to captives
- recover sight for the blind ( heal )
- set free the oppressed (deliverance )
- power and authority over the demons
- heal diseases
- proclaim the kingdom of God
Jesus’ instruction is clear concerning the three foundational basics to be called a “full gospel” church…(1) Preach the gospel (good news) of the Kingdom of God, (2) Heal the sick and (3) Cast out demons.
God warns about tampering with His instructions in REV 22:18-19 “…if anyone adds… if anyone takes away….” DEUT 4:2 “…shall not add…nor take away from…” PROV 30:5-6 ”…Every word of God….Do not add to His words…”
ACTS 2:42 reveals 4 simple basics of the early church and how they worshipped: Apostles’ teachings, fellowship (assembling together), eating meals together and praying. Paul gives instructions in 1 COR 14:26 about simplicity in worship services. “When you assemble, each one has a psalm, a teaching, a revelation, a tongue, an interpretation. Doing all for edification.” These are added to make body ministry complete as the Lord desires.
God is seeking people who will be obedient to Him for He is sovereign in all things…for “obedience is better than sacrifice” ( 1 SAM 15:22 ) God provides a simple, orderly, meaningful and rewarding way to worship Him, which is pleasing to Him when done His way.
Is the gospel of the kingdom of God being preached?
Are the sick anointed and prayed over to be healed?
Are demons being cast out in the name of Jesus?
When these three God-given instructions are faithfully followed then the church can be truly called “full gospel”. The Lord’s blessings flow to the obedient in all things.
Malachi 2:7 – “For the lips of a priest (pastor, teacher, preacher) should preserve knowledge, and men should seek instruction from his mouth; for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts” (8) “But as for you, you have turned aside from the way, you have caused many to stumble by the instruction…” (9) “…you are not keeping My ways but are showing partiality in the instruction”.
A pastor is to teach the full counsel of God’s Word. These verses address the issue and are a warning to anyone who fails to teach the Word as given by the Holy Spirit:
- REV 22:18-19 “I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book;(19) and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book”.
- DEUT 4:2 “You shall not add to the word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you”
- PROV 30:5-6 “Every word of God is tested; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. Do not add to His words or He will reprove you, and you will be proved a liar”.
The question arises: Is your pastor and your church actively involved in the ministry of deliverance as Christ taught? How can anybody who sees someone in bondage, pain and suffering not do something to help that person? WHY? Could it be the “fear of the face of man? (“What would my denominational governing board say”? “What would members of my church say?”) The apostle Paul asks something serious of those in leadership in GAL 1:10, “For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still striving to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ”.
Something is terribly wrong in today’s churches when it comes to the “full-gospel” instructions of Jesus: MATT 10:1-8 (vs 8)“Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give”. Luke 9:1-2 “And He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all the demons and to heal diseases. And He sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to perform healing”. Mark 16:15-18 (vs 17) “These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues”.
It is evident that the simplicity of what Jesus taught His disciples and His instructions for us today have somehow gone astray. 2 COR 11:4 “For if one comes and preaches another Jesus whom who you have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully”. A different gospel, another Jesus, a different spirit – NO! Some say the “gifts, healings and apostles” are no longer here, that they have somehow passed away. That is not what God’s Word says. Paul admonishes us in 2 COR 13:5 “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you – unless indeed you fail the test” Faith comes by the hearing of the Word and hearing by those who absolutely believe that God’s word is true and to be heeded. God is sovereign and means what He says to us. WHY is deliverance excluded in your church’s ministry?
There are reported stories about church members or guests manifesting demons in services. The deacons and elders remove the person from services, taking them to the basement or some other area so the person will “not embarrass or disrupt the worship service”. One report concerns an elder in a northeastern U.S. church who told the members to “Get away as quickly as you can from any person manifesting a demon in services. Move away and don’t get involved”. WHY? Instead of treating the person in bondage this way just do what Jesus did. Immediately gather around the person, pray and cast the demon out and set the person free. Isn’t this part of a true church service…ministering to those in need?
LUKE 4:33-36 & MARK 1:23-26 “In the synagogue there was a man possessed by the spirit of an unclean demon, and he cried out with a loud voice, ‘Let us alone! What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who You are – the Holy One of God! But Jesus rebuked him, saying, ‘Be quiet and come out of him!’ And when the demon had thrown him down in the midst of the people, he came out of him without doing any harm”.
Jesus quickly handled the situation concerning a demon manifesting in church. WHY don’t churches do today what Jesus did? Is the real issue “fear of the face of man” … or obedience to the Word of God?
The church altar is a common fixture in most churches. Each week one sees many of the same people go down front, kneel, begin to pray and others laying hands on them and praying. But what is really going on? Certainly prayer is necessary and does bring results. God does answer prayers but something is missing in the lives of many people who go week after week to the altar for healing from their emotional and physical pains and do not receive.
In a South Carolina church I watched members go down to the altar, kneel and begin to pray, some very emotionally. After a few months I began to wonder why the same people went week after week and why they never seemed to be healed or find comfort for their hurts. There had to be a reason. Then one Sunday, after watching a lady go to the altar for several weeks,
I asked the Lord silently “Lord, why doesn’t this lady get healed?” Then I saw a demon, in the spirit, near her kidneys. I asked her about this after services, she admitted to having severe back pains and then we discussed the ministry of deliverance. I realized this church absolutely denied that a believer could have a demon or be under demonic influence. Some months later this lady came to me and submitted to deliverance ministry outside that church and the Lord gave her some awesome deliverance and freedom.
In another denominational church I saw groups of people at the altar each week but no demons being cast out. One lady went into open manifestation one Sunday. The pastor panicked and called 911. Jesus would have gone to her in love, prayed and cast out the demons. The ambulance came, took her away with her demons, and she never, to my knowledge, got delivered. Some months later she died an agonizing death. It was evident that this church did not believe what Jesus taught about deliverance, although the pastor taught from MARK 16 one Sunday and “glossed over” the verses about demons.
How sad a commentary on the suffering of many church members, who love the Lord, go to Him in sincere prayer but are never taught that there is more available than just prayer. The altars continue to be crowded each week with many of the same suffering people who remain in demonic bondage because their churches do not believe what Jesus taught about the ministry of deliverance.
How wonderful it would be to see the pastor go to the altar, take authority in the name of Jesus, begin to pray in faith and belief, and in the name of Jesus cast demons out of the members he is supposed to shepherd. The day is coming when suffering people in bondage will be set free but it will only be accomplished if done the way Jesus Christ taught in the Word of God.
Too many pastors are not concerned for the welfare of their flock. Jesus has some strong words for those who fail to properly shepherd their flocks in JOHN 10:11-13. “I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep. He who is a hired hand, and not a shepherd, who is not the owner of the sheep, sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. He flees because he is a hired hand and is not concerned about the sheep”.
GEN 2:24 “…a man be joined to his wife and they shall become one flesh.” Most understand the basics of a godly marriage. But there is another “marriage” that is sad, extracting a heavy price from both single and married people. That is the issue of curses and demons. In these trying times more people are surfacing with their problems and many are asking “what is going on, what forces are at work in my life, why do I feel so bound-up, what are these strange feelings I have?” The list goes on and on without answers.
For every situation in life God’s Word provides a principle, which requires some searching and study. Prove all things as the Bereans did.
Foundational scriptures on the demonic are very plain including these verses: MATT 10:1-8 – LUKE 4:18 – LUKE 9:1-2 – MARK 16:17-18
JER 30:17 “For I will restore you to health and I will heal you of your wounds, declares the Lord.”
Good health includes both the physical and the spiritual. Demons bring suffering, bondage, even sickness and pain to a person. God provides a solution to those who will submit to Him.
There are many reasons for a person to avoid facing demonic issues: One tradition is “a Christian cannot have demon”. Another is denominational teaching “Christ did it all at the cross so there is nothing more for a person to do but believe”. Another is pride “I could not possibly have some dirty or evil entity inside me”. Another is the survival mode “I have
a problem, it has been here a long time, I have learned to live with it and so I will continue as is and move on”. Another is the fear of the face of man “what will people say if I manifest”?
In marriage there is a meeting of the minds and flesh. Problems come up which are normal as “iron sharpens iron”. Lurking in dark places and out of sight is a multitude of demonic spirits just waiting for the right moment to surface and cause division. This is their job – to divide and conquer. Denying that demons exist is dangerous and questions the word of God. Demons hate unity between people. Satan came to destroy.
Christ came to destroy the works of the devil (1 JOHN 3:8)
The pastor of the church I was attending in 1998 asked if anyone was interested in taking part in prison ministry. My response was “no”. In 2001 a Methodist lay-leader asked if I would like to attend his prison ministry which had been ongoing for over 20 years. I said “yes”.
Free in the Lord Ministries began in May of 2002 by volunteering in several South Carolina correctional institutions. During that time I heard from the Lord the words “Behind the Bars”. I asked, “Lord, is that a song title (I am a musician), a book title, what? What do you mean”? I continued in prison ministry for 5 years and saw many inmates with problems, bondages, demonic curses and influences, and ministered to a number of them with their own deliverance issues. It was very rewarding to see them obtain a measure of freedom from the demonic. I saw similar things like parts of my life, in many of the men and realized prison ministry was meant to show me that much of my own life had been lived in a prison…”behind the bars”. Demonic oppression, generational and other type curses and bondages had controlled many of my decisions causing much suffering. In His ever-great mercy and love God delivered me from many of my life-long bondages.
“Behind the Bars” describes much of the work I did in
prisons and with other individuals. Being part of a body ministry (KEY Ministries) has given me opportunity to further examine my own life. The Lord began to show me how my life had been deeply affected by not being properly fathered and loved. The spirits of rejection, shame, guilt, bitterness and unforgiveness worked themselves into my life causing much grief and suffering.
Do I still need deliverance? Yes. It is an ongoing journey to walk in the truth of God’s Word. I am no longer in a spiritual prison, no longer “behind the bars.” I have broken out and coming into more freedom each day, as God continues to deliver me.
Paul emphasizes the importance of the whole body in 1 COR 12:12 – “For even as the body is one and yet has many members, and all the members of the body, thought they are many, are ONE BODY, so also is Christ”. Each member is equally important—God has no favorites. 1 COR 12:18 is vital to understanding the place in the body that God has for each believer. A person does not have to strive to find his place, just humbly and patiently yield to the Holy Spirit and placement becomes clear in God’s timing.
EPH 4:11 shows the 5-fold ministry of the body (“And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers…”) NEH 10:39 mentions those who handle offerings, utensil workers, priests, gatekeepers and singers. There are many functions in body ministry.
If a believer tries to “go it alone”, as a lone ranger, who does he turn to in times of spiritual or physical needs. Sickness comes. JAMES 5:14 “Is anyone among you sick? Then he must call for the elders of the church and they are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord”. Who does the believer turn to if he or she has no body ministry? If he suffers, needs deliverance, is hungry, needs encouragement, has financial problems, is lonely, has questions about spiritual matters…who is there to help him if he is a “loner” living a self-contained life? This does not work and is not what Father God intends for His children.
Paul explains in 1 COR 12:15-17 the physical analogy and importance of the body. Feet, hands, ears, eyes…all essential for the completeness of the human body. Paul wants us to understand how important each member is to the spiritual body, the local church.
What about a “spiritual covering”? We all need to be accountable to someone who truly cares for us in every way. A pastor is to “shepherd” the flock with love and care for each member. Jesus was so concerned that He gave the example of the one lost sheep for all to consider. The early church had many small groups of believers. ACTS 2:42 “They were continually devoting themselves to the apostle’s teachings, and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer”. (vs 44) “And ALL those who believed were together, and had all things in common”.
How can an individual serve and grow if he is not in a body ministry? TITUS 2 gives instructions to 4 groups of believers. (Vs 2 – older men) (Vs 3 – older women) (Vs 4 – young women) (Vs 6 – young men). All members in the body, all ages. Each individual is equally loved by God. God never intended for a believer to “be on his own” and not be jointed in a local body of believers. “Loners” make easy prey for the enemy.
Solomon knew the importance of not being a loner. ECCL 4:9-12 “Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls and there is not another to life him up. Furthermore, if two lie down together they keep warm, but how can one be warm alone? And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart”.
God has gifted each believer as He pleases. Each
believer has a certain measure of faith. The gifts are of no use unless used and faith must be put into practice. 1 Peter 4:8-10 tells us to use what God has given us, for the members of the body. “Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without complaint. As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God”.
God desires the best possible spiritual health for each of His children. He loves family and desires our lives to be intertwined with one another for mutual benefit and blessings.
JER 15:11 “The Lord said, ‘Surely I will set you free for purposes of good:’ Yes, deliverance does set a person free, not all at once, but over time. Joshua took the promised land city by city and thus it is with deliverance, a life-style change for the rest of one’s days. But other things change as well. It is painful at times and requires healing and understanding.
ACTS 16:16-19 “It happened that as we were going to the place of prayer, a slave-girl having a spirit of divination met us, who was bringing her masters much profit by fortune-telling. Following after Paul and us, she kept crying out, saying, ‘ These men are bond-servants of the Most High God, who are proclaiming to you the way of salvation. She continued doing this for many days. But Paul was greatly annoyed, and turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her!” And it came out at that very moment. But when her masters saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the market place before the authorities”. Paul and Silas were accused of “throwing our city into confusion” overlooking the fact that a precious girl had been set free from demonic bondage.
LUKE 8:26—37 is the story of the demonized man from Gerasenes who had suffered agonizing torment for many years. Jesus came, confronted the demons and commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. The demon’s name was Legion, which indicated many demons within the man. (vs 32) Jesus permitted the demons to enter the swine and were soon destroyed in the lake. Again the herdsmen in the area, seeing the deliverance, did not rejoice at the man’s freedom but became upset and reported the matter all through that area. (vs 37) “And all the people of the country of Gerasenes and the surrounding district asked Him to leave them, for they were gripped with great fear…”. Instead of joy about the matter the people were angry, resentful and upset about the loss of the pigs and their livelihood.
When the power of ruling principalities over an area is broken it shakes and disrupts the entire area. Deliverance in an individual causes great and noticeable changes in the person. Demons are affected as JAMES 2:19 says “You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder”.
Jesus came to “destroy the works of the devil”. These works include the casting out of demons from those in bondage. LUKE 4:18 “…release to the captives, to set free those who are oppressed”. This message of deliverance brought outright rage against Jesus and deliverance ministry. (vs 28,29) “And all the people in the synagogue were filled with rage as they heard these things; and they got up and drove Him out of the city…”. The breaking of oppression seems to irritate some people.
Relationships within the extended family are affected when a person is released from familiar spirits. Unhealthy soul-ties are broken; spirits of Jezebel and Ahab are exposed. Issues of control, manipulation, domination, intimidation are brought to light. People are exposed for what they really are and this causes division!
There should be rejoicing but often there is resentment and anger at the changes a person makes, as they are set free from the demonic. Deliverance often divides people as it exposes the works of darkness and brings people to the truth (the light).
Those preferring darkness feel threatened.
Deliverance definitely changes things. The life of a person being set free is dramatically changed. When deliverance happens, the Kingdom of God has come among the people. Praise God for His ministry of deliverance!
EPH 1:17 “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him. (vs 18) I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints”.
JOHN 8:31 “…if you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free. (vs 36) So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.”
Special appreciation to Stephen Bell (The KEY Ministries), Frank Hammond (The Children’s Bread Ministries), Derek
Prince (Derek Prince Ministries), Gene B. Moody (Be Delivered Ministries), Jesse Hegler (S.C. Prison Chaplain, retired) Ivory L. Hopkins (Pilgrims Ministry of Deliverance), Bill Banks (Impact Christian Books), Gordon Powlison and others.
A special thanks to my loving, faithful and cherished wife Hannah, standing with me these many years with encouragement, patience, loving critique and so very gifted in editing and proof-reading. Always a willing assistant in the ministry of deliverance.
My greatest appreciation goes to Father God, who continues to guide my life with His awesome love, grace, encouragement, correction and forgiveness. And Jesus Christ, my loving Savior, the Deliverer who continues to set me free. And the Holy Spirit, whose loving guidance and encouragement keeps my focus on the great God and His purpose for my life and His plan for all His creation.
About the Author
After graduating from Camden S.C. high school in 1957 I attended Wingate Junior College (Wingate, NC) for my freshman year then transferred to the University of Georgia (Athens, GA) I graduated in January 1962 with an ABJ degree in Journalism/Public Relations/Advertising. While students at Georgia I met my first wife Diane Sargent of Decatur, GA. We were married for 4 ½ years before she went to be with the Lord in December of 1963.
After graduation we moved to Atlanta where I worked for a short time at Davison’s Department Store, then 3 years at Burke Dowling Adams Advertising Agency.
I later realized that advertising was not for me so I entered the insurance claims field in 1965 and moved to Charlotte N.C. and worked in the insurance claims industry for 35 years. I took early retirement with Blue Cross/Companion Property & Casualty (Columbia, SC) in October 2001. For a short time during the 1960s I worked in the entertainment business booking musical groups and working in sales, both being “dead-end” jobs.
I was raised a Southern Baptist and had later associations with the Episcopal, Worldwide Church of God, Methodist, Nazarene and Pentecostal Holiness churches. I was never satisfied in my search for more of Jesus in these groups and could not go beyond their beliefs until baptized in the Holy Spirit (May 2002). The Lord began to open my heart and mind to spiritual dimensions I never knew existed, including the ministry of deliverance, where Jesus had most of His ministry.
During 2002 Hannah and I volunteered for Prison Ministry in the S.C. Department of Corrections where we served as full-time volunteers for 5 years at the Manning and Walden units in Columbia, SC. We also served in jail ministry for 5 years at the Fairfield County Detention Center (Winnsboro, SC). We lived in nearby Jenkinsville, SC for 30 years. During that time we received training in deliverance ministry from Derek Prince Ministries (Charlotte, NC) and Gene Moody (Baton Rouge, LA). It was not a ministry we would have chosen but we soon realized that the Lord had called us specifically into deliverance ministry to help people get set free from curses and demonic bondages in their lives.
Free in the Lord Ministries was founded in May of 2002 going worldwide on the Internet with English and Spanish websites. In February 2007 the Lord called us to move from our home in Jenkinsville SC to Euless Texas to become part of the KEY Ministries and a deepening walk with the Lord and His ministry of deliverance. It is my heart-felt joy and labor of love to help “set the captives free”.
In HIS service,
Free in the Lord Ministries
BOOKS AVAILABLE FROM KEY PUBLISHING
- Breaking Free (English, Spanish, Urdu, Gusii, French, Malayalam) – $3.00
- The Ahab Spirit (English and Spanish) – $4.00
- Jezebel Exposed (English and Spanish) – $4.00
- Forgiveness (English and Spanish) – $3.00
- Freedom From Fear (English and Spanish) – $3.00
- No Other Gods (English and Spanish) – $4.00
- Stop the Hurt – $10.00
- Marriage/Relationship Workshop Manual – $8.00
- Why Cast Out Demons? – $3.00
- Deliverance Workbook – $5.00
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