What To Do Before and During a Spiritual Crisis
Spiritual leaders are facing some serious challenges. So much of what the Bible warns concerning believers of the faith, has and is happening. People who once seemed to be on fire for the Lord are now lukewarm and uninspired. Many who demonstrated a passion for the Word and Truth of God now rarely pick up a Bible or gather with other believers. The soul-winners, the evangelists, those who were consistently committed to witnessing to the lost have barely shared a tract or a testimony.
There is a demonic campaign afoot to lull people to sleep, spiritually. The devil does not want people to be aware and awake. The intent of the enemy is to divert attention away from the Lord, His Word, His Ways and His Warnings.
1 Peter 5:8 KJV
8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
1 Peter 5:8 AMP
8 Be sober [well balanced and self-disciplined], be alert and cautious at all times. That enemy of yours, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion [fiercely hungry], seeking someone to devour.
The Greek word in the original text translated ‘devour’ is katapinÓ. According to Strong’s Concordance #2666 the word means ‘to drink down’. The word is also used to mean ‘to swallow’, ‘to destroy’ or ‘to consume’.
The devil’s desire is to get rid of you, if you are a child of the King. If you belong to the Lord and have submitted your life to Him, your adversary wants to destroy you. He, the devil, is cunning and crafty. He doesn’t come running at you with a big butcher knife to stab you in the heart and slit your throat. His tactics are much more subtle. Know that what he does is certainly as effective as the attack just described. But he does it in less obvious ways. Anyone with any sense of self-preservation would avoid any association with an individual who wants to kill them. But this enemy is clever, strategic and doesn't mind waiting for an opportune time to attack. He does not initially let a person know what he is all about. He presents himself as an angel of light. (2 Corinthians 11:14) But he is actually the devil of darkness and danger.
2 Corinthians 2:11 KJV
11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
In the verse above, Paul the Apostle warns us that the devil uses many forms of deception. He has various tricks and tools that he uses against humanity. If one idea doesn’t produce the results he wants, he will try another form of trickery. We are to be aware of how the enemy works. Something that may seem like it is not detrimental to your spiritual growth is actually weakening your stamina.
1 Peter 5:9 AMP
9 But resist him, be firm in your faith [against his attack—rooted, established, immovable], knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being experienced by your brothers and sisters throughout the world. [You do not suffer alone.]
Our stance of success is resistance, refusal and rebuking. Too many believers accept what the enemy says and does as fact. If you know a person hates you and wants to destroy you, why would you listen to or believe anything they say?
James 4:7 AMP
7 So submit to [the authority of] God. Resist the devil [stand firm against him] and he will flee from you.
Becoming and remaining strong in the Lord begins with submitting to, yielding to and obeying the Lord and His Word. Come under the Lord’s authority and remain there. Some folks want to keep climbing out the window in the middle of the night. They sneak back in just before dawn and act like they have been inside all night. But the devil knows who is authentic and who is just ‘playing church’. Just when it will hurt the most, that snake in the grass will expose those who are living a double life. Don’t let him make a fool out of you.
1 Peter 4: 1-2 KJV
Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;
2 That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
Thinking and believing like the Lord Jesus Christ arms us and fortifies us against the wiles or tactics of satan and his imps. The scriptures are one way that the Lord makes His thoughts known. If you want to know how and what someone thinks, read their writings. The Bible is given to us so we know how the Lord expects us to live.
2 Timothy 3:16 AMP
16 All Scripture is God-breathed [given by divine inspiration] and is profitable for instruction, for conviction [of sin], for correction [of error and restoration to obedience], for training in righteousness [learning to live in conformity to God’s will, both publicly and privately—behaving honorably with personal integrity and moral courage];
In the natural, we are not smarter than the devil. He has more experience, he has no morals and he doesn’t follow the rules. He will cheat, lie, steal and kill to get his way. We need help in recognizing his evil ways and instructions on how to stay out of his traps. We have the Word of God which satan cannot overcome. And we have the Holy Spirit Who knows all things. The Holy Spirit will lead and guide us into ALL Truth!
John 16:13 KJV
13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
Sadly, a spiritual crisis isn’t coming - - it is already here. Many spiritual leaders have given up the fight. They quit resisting, learning, leaning and loving. They are exhausted from trying to pull people along the path of righteousness. It is hard to inspire people who no longer care. We must arm ourselves (Ephesians 6:13-18) with the whole armor of God. And sincerely encourage others to do the same. Don’t think that becoming lukewarm can’t happen to you. The only ones who are immune to satan’s tactics are those who have already fallen asleep in the Lord. If you are not in the grave then you are a target of the enemy. He is out to get you and he will unless you prepare according to the wisdom of the Word and Spirit of God.
In the book of Judges Samson was used mightily by and for the Lord. But without realizing what was happening, he became weak. It is vital not to rely on past successes and victories. It is of utmost importance to spiritually build ourselves up. We must keep ourselves spiritually fit, aware and prepared.
Jude 1: 20 AMP
20 But you, beloved, build yourselves up on [the foundation of] your most holy faith [continually progress, rise like an edifice higher and higher], pray in the Holy Spirit,
Samson expected that he would continue to be able to conquer and overcome just as he always had. But the enemy was working on him and slowly eroded his resolve. Eventually Samson gave away the source of his strength and the enemy was able to surprise and capture him. Samson’s demise happened a little at a time. He had no idea that he was being lulled to sleep, spiritually and naturally. When he woke up naturally and shook himself, his power was gone.
Judges 16: 19-20 AMP
19 She made Samson sleep on her knees, and she called a man and had him shave off the seven braids of his head. Then she began to abuse Samson, and his strength left him.
20 She said, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” And he awoke from his sleep and said, “I will go out as I have time after time and shake myself free.” For Samson did not know that the Lord had departed from him.
When some people realize that a crisis is here many will shake themselves like Samson. But because they have not armed themselves, they, like Samson, will discover that their strength is gone. Prepare now. Abide in the Lord and let His words abide in you. (John 15:7)
Be strong in the Lord. (Ephesians 6: 10-18) Study and apply these instructions.
Be Ready. The war is won but the fight is on!