All Scripture quotations are from the Authorized King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise indicated.
January 14, 2009
Try the Spirits
HANDS FOR JESUS
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2009 by Merle E. Koepke
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In 1 John 4:1 it says, "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world." Jesus said in Matthew 7:15,16, "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves...Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?"
When you see Jolly Old St. Nick at Christmas time saying Ho, ho, ho you should know there is something wrong. In your spirit there should be a knowing. This is not of God!
If you see a bunny rabbit going hip, hop, hip, hop on Easter Sunday, laying eggs, you should know there is something wrong. It does not take very much intelligence to know that is not of God.
In some of the Churches today, it is said that they have Santa Claus come in to entertain the children at Christmas time. Other Churches have Easter egg hunts for children at Easter time. Do they not know that "fellowship" with the world will hinder the Holy Spirit from working in their lives.
Satan has many counter operations in the world, but these should not be allowed in the Churches of Christians. Christians should "Walk in the Light of the Truth of the Word of God" (1 John 1:5-7). This is not the time to have fellowship with the worlds system, which is darkness.
The Church needs to go out into the world and "manifest" the true gospel of Jesus Christ. But, the Church should not let the world come into the churches "and manifest" the false operations of the enemy.
Why try the spirits? We need to know what spirits are operating in our lives and the lives of others. It is spiritual operations that manifest in the natural. Therefore, that which manifests in the natural had its beginning in the spiritual realm.
Let me give you an example of a natural manifestation that had its beginning in the spiritual realm. A sister in the LORD had a dream in January. In her dream she saw herself driving her car, crossing an intersection where the traffic coming from the left was traveling close to fifty miles an hour. She was at a stop sign and she started to cross the intersection when she looked to her left. Immediately, she saw a car coming toward her and hitting her car just back of the drivers door. When the oncoming car struck her car, glass from the window was flying in all directions.
She was facing the window on her left side when the other car hit her car. Glass from the window flew into her face on the left side, cutting into the area around her left eye.
She knew in the dream that it was herself that was in the accident. She was the one in the car that the other car hit. She did nothing about that dream. She did not tell anyone else at the time and just put it off as another dream.
That dream was a spiritual operation. Whether it was God showing her something in the future that the Devil had planned or not, we do not know for sure. But one thing we do know, it was a spiritual operation in the spirit realm.
In April of that same year, that accident happened (exactly the way she saw it in the dream in January). Had she come against that dream with the blood of Jesus and in the name of Jesus and bound any spirits that had plans for that accident, it would not have taken place. Had she told anyone who knows about spiritual operations and how they use dreams to get others to receive what the spirits of this world have planned for the future, they could have come against it for her. Not understanding spirits, and spiritual operations in thoughts, dreams, and visions gives the enemy an opportunity to cause things to happen in the natural realm.
We must try the spirits in dreams, visions, and thoughts in our minds, if it is of God or of the Devil? If it is of the Devil, we must come against it to stop it before it manifests in the natural. Satan cannot manifest in the lives of Christians unless someone lets him.
Christians are not of this world. They are born again in Christ Jesus (a part of the body of Christ). Christians have authority over all the works of the enemy, but they must use the authority they have to stop the Devil from doing whatsoever he plans to do.
God loves His children. God will do everything He can to help His children when they need help. In this case, when this sister in the LORD was taken to the hospital. They called me from the hospital.
I got to the hospital while she was still in the emergency room being checked out. I met her in the hospital just after she came down from the emergency room. I did not know anything about the dream she had until after the accident. She was already out of the Hospital and recovered when she told me of the dream she had in January.
When the doctor came in with the x-rays he examined her face very closely. He then said to her, "There are no broken bones, but there is a lot of damage. Part of your eye-lash is missing, and part of your eye-brow is missing. There is no place on your body where I can get eye-brows or eye-lashes from at this time. All I can do is sew you up and after it is healed somewhat we can send you to another hospital about 100 miles away and they will be able to graft in some eye-lashes and eye-brows."
After the doctor left the room she said to me, "We are not going to accept that are we?" I said "No, let's pray!" I began to pray in the Spirit. I must have prayed at least five minutes or more when she said to me, "Is that all you are going to do is pray in the Spirit?" I said to her, "Let the Holy Spirit do what He wants to do." I continued to pray in the Spirit.
After praying in the Spirit for quite some time, words began to come out of my mouth in English. I began to say, "In the name of Jesus I command the eye-lashes to be there. In the name of Jesus I command the eye-brows to be there. In the name of Jesus I command the tear glands to be whole and working. In the name of Jesus I command the eye muscles to be working properly. In the name of Jesus I command 20-20 vision in her eyes." Then, unexpectedly these words came out of my mouth "And she will be in church on Sunday."
When I heard myself say that, my mind stopped my spirit from praying. I could not believe in my mind that she would be in Church on Sunday. It was about 6:00pm on Friday at that time.
Following the prayer, they took her up for surgery. About 11:00pm the doctor came to me and said, "Praise the LORD! The eye-brows and eye-lashes were all there. The tear glands were fine. Everything was there, all I had to do was sew her up."
In the Old Testament times, the people were in Adam. They were born of the flesh but not born of the Spirit. Jesus said in John 3:6, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit."
For Christians, Romans 8:9 says, "...ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." In 2 Corinthians 5:17 it says, "Therefore, if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."
There is a major difference between the flesh and the spirit. Adam and all of his descendants were in the flesh. All who are born again, are born again of the Spirit in Christ. This is very important to understand, for 1 Corinthians 15:22 says, "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." Which would you want to do? Do you want to live, or do you want to die? To live, you must first be born again in Christ Jesus.
In John 3:6, Jesus said, "...that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." In 1 Peter 1:23 it says, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever." Therefore, we are born again of the Spirit and the Word in Christ Jesus.
Being born again of the Word and the Spirit we must learn how to live according to the Spirit and the Word. When we were born into this world, we were born of the flesh. Now that we are born again of the Word and the Spirit we have a new life in Christ Jesus. It is a new birth into a new life. This means a whole new way of living.
Christians must learn how to set the old life in the flesh aside and walk after the Spirit and not after the flesh. The flesh (which was in Adam) must die, and the Spirit (which is in Christ Jesus) must live.
Being that we are no longer in Adam, but in Christ Jesus, we must learn to "walk after the Spirit and not after the flesh." The flesh has already been condemned to die because of sin. But, Romans 8:1,2 tells us, "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit...For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death." To be free of condemnation, we must walk after the Spirit and not after the flesh.
Being that we are still in this world, and still have a body of flesh and bones, our human nature still wants to walk after the flesh. Walking after the Spirit is a whole new way of living.
We must learn the difference between the flesh and the Spirit. If we say we are walking after the Spirit and continue to desire the things of the flesh, we make ourselves a liar. But, how can we walk after the Spirit and not after the flesh if we do not know how to walk after the Spirit?
Try the Spirits
In the Epistle of 1 John 4:1,2, we are told how to "try the spirits." But, we must start in 1 John, Chapter One to understand the remaining Chapters. Unless we know the true Spirit, we cannot identify the false spirits.
In 1 John 1:1-3 we get to know who "Christ is." If we do not know and understand who Christ is, how can we know the truth? Christ is the Son of God, Who came in the flesh. By the Word of God, Jesus was manifest in the flesh.
Christ is the Son of God in the Spirit. Jesus is the Son of God in the flesh. The Son of God became flesh so that we could become born again in the Spirit. Now, that we have received the Son of God and became born again of the Word of God and the Spirit of God, we must learn how to live in the spirit and not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.
The first thing we need to understand is 1 John 1:5-10. In 1 John 1:5,6 it tells us, "This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all....If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth." The words "light" and "darkness" are symbolic of "righteousness" and "sin." To walk in the light is walking in righteousness. If we walk in sin we are walking in darkness.
The flesh (being of this world), still desires to walk in darkness. The spirit (being of God), desires to walk in righteousness. We decide which one we will follow (will we walk in righteousness or in darkness)?
Being that we still have the flesh with us and we are still in this world, 1 John 1:7 tells us, "But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
How do we walk in the light? We keep the LORD's two commandments (Mark 12:30,31). In 1 John 2:3-5 it says, "And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments...He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him....But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him."
In 1 John 2:6 it says, "He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked." This is the key to walking in the light. Walk as Jesus walked. When we walk as Jesus walked, we have fellowship with the Father and the Son.
In 1 John 2:9-11 it says, "He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now...He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him...But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes."
"Fellowship" with God and "relationship" to God are two different things. When we are born again of the Spirit and the Word we receive "relationship" to God. God becomes our true Father and we become children of God. Many of God's children are walking in darkness (they are out of fellowship with God). To have fellowship with God, we must walk in the light as He is in the light. This is why it is so important that we learn to "try the spirits" if they are of God?
How do we try the spirits? Before we can try the spirits that operate in another person, we must be walking in the light ourselves. If we are not walking in the light as God is in the light, then we will not be able to correctly try the spirits.
In walking in the light, we must understand what it means to walk in love. For, if we are not walking in love, other spirits will operate within us, and cause us to receive false information.
To walk in love we need to understand love. There are two major types of love spoken of in the New Testament, in the Greek. There is "agape," the very love of God that is poured out in our heart by the Holy Spirit when we are born again of the Word and the Spirit (Rom. 5:5). Only Christians have this love.
This love is the first of all "the fruit of the Spirit" (Gal. 5:22). This is the love that is talked about and defined in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, saying "Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up...does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil...does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth...bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things" (NKJV). This love is "unconditional love." Because it is God's love. Not human love.
The other major type of love spoken of in the New Testament, in the Greek is "phileo." This is human love, "which is conditional." This is the type of love the world knows and operates by. The world does not have God's love. Therefore, they only have human love, "which is conditional."
In 1 John 2:6 it said, "He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked." Some things of importance about this "agape" love is as it tells us in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, "Love suffers long and is kind..." and love "is not rude, nor selfish..." When Christians truly love someone, they are never "rude" in the way they do things concerning others. The word "rude" means "cruel, harsh, or rough in the way we do things." Therefore, "if we walk as Jesus walked," we will never be "cruel, harsh, or rough in the way we do thing concerning others."
In 1 Corinthians 13:4, it also tells us that love is "not selfish." The word "selfish" means, "too much concerned with one's own welfare or interests and having little or no concern for others." This also means, Christians must not be "selfish." Which means, "too much concerned with one's own welfare or interests and having little or no concern for others."
God will never force Himself upon someone else. God will never do things against your will. God's love does not operate by force and is never rude or selfish. God's love also "...suffers long and is kind..." (1 Cor. 13:4, NKJV). Therefore God also "...suffers long and is kind..." This also means, Christians must also "suffer long and be kind" one toward another.
Christians must do as God does. Christians must walk in the same love God walks in. Christians "must walk" in God's "agape" love, not human "phileo" love. God's "agape" love is a fruit of the Holy Spirit, which is poured out into our hearts when we are born again into the family of God.
The fruit of the Spirit only operates when we are walking in the light of the Word of God. To walk in the light of the Word of God we need the help of the Holy Spirit. Without the Holy Spirit leading, guiding, comforting, helping, and teaching us we cannot truly walk in God's love.
In 1 John 4:1,2 it says, "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world...Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God." We try the spirits according to their confession. If their confession agrees with the light, then they are of God. If their confession agrees with the darkness, then they are not of God. Light and darkness are symbolic words, therefore, we must bring them into the actual meaning by saying, "If their confession agrees with righteousness, then they are of God. If their confession disagrees with righteousness, then they are not of God."
Whatsoever is not of God, is of the Devil. In 1 John 3:8 it tells us, "He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning..." Therefore, whatsoever is not of God is sin. For the Devil sinned from the beginning.
All sin is of the Devil. But the LORD has given us power over all the power of the Devil. In Luke 10:19, Jesus said, "Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you."
To be effective in operating in this power, we must not hinder the flow of the power of God in our lives. Therefore, we must walk in the light, and not in darkness. Then we can release the power of God within us to destroy the works of the Devil. To do this, we must understand spirits and spiritual operations.
Spirits cannot be seen with the natural eyes, but their effect can be known by the end results they bring. Words are spirit, but they are not spirits. Spirits produce words, that produce thoughts, that control what is said. Spirits work by both words and thoughts. Therefore, both words and thoughts are spiritual operations.
We are to control the thoughts that come to our minds. By controlling our thoughts we will control the spirits that try to get us to walk in darkness and not in the light. In 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 it says, "For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:...(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)...Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ."
We cannot try the spirits if we do not first bring our thoughts into agreement with "Christ" (Who dwells in us). Christ is the anointing of the Holy Spirit within our spirit. Christ means "the Anointed One." Jesus became "Christ" when God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit."
The anointed One dwells in us (in our spirit by the power of the Holy Spirit). This is a spiritual operation from our spirit, not a natural operation from our flesh. We do not naturally bring all our thoughts into subjection to the Spirit of Christ that dwells in us. We need the help of the Holy Spirit to do this. Therefore, we must learn to walk in the light that the Holy Spirit is not hindered from teaching, leading, guiding, comforting, and helping us in every area of our lives.
We cannot effectively try the spirits operating in another person until we have first tried the spirits that are trying to control our lives. If the spirits of this world are controlling our lives, we are walking in darkness and we will not be able to identify the spirits that are operating in the lives of others. We must first control our thoughts by walking in the light, before we can take control of other spirits in the lives of others. Jesus said, "...first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye" (Matt. 7:5).
Do not judge other people. Jesus said in Matthew 7:1,2 "Judge not, that ye be not judged...For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." The word "judge," sometimes means, "to try, for the purpose of condemning another."
Christians are under a New Covenant, which is established upon love. God is love (1 John 4:8). Love never condemns anyone. God never condemns anyone. A person condemns himself "...because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God" (John 3:18).
If we believe "...in the name of the only begotten Son of God," then we should try the spirits, if they are of God. When we know the spirits that are controlling the person, we should come against that spirit in the name of Jesus. That spirit should be overcome by the power of the Holy Spirit working in us and through us.
This is why it is so important to try the spirits (1 John 4:1). We must love the people, but not the spirits that try to control people.
In John 3:16 it says, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." This is the love of God that should be operating in every Christian. What God has done for us in Christ Jesus, we should also desire to be done in the lives of everyone.
Try the spirits that cause others to do things which are not of God. Then, set them free by the power of the Blood of Jesus Christ, as the Blood of Jesus has already set us free!
We must overcome the world, just as Jesus overcame the world. We must walk with God, just as Jesus walked with God.
To walk with God, we must try the spirits that try to control people, starting with the spirits that try to control what we do ourselves. Then try the spirits to set others free of all operations of the spirits of this world.
For more detailed information on "Try the Spirits," get Part 2, and all succeeding parts to this series. Go to our Web sites at:
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