When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him
One of the common objections to the ministry of setting captives free performed by Jesus and the apostles is the apparent lack of instruction on the subject in the Epistles. Let me offer another perspective which may help clarify the issue and suggest how we should confront demonic influence in our own lives and minister to others in bondage.
Prior to the cross, divinely empowered agents--such as Jesus and His specifically appointed apostles--were necessary to take authority over demonic powers in the world. But something radical happened at the cross and in the resurrection that changed the nature of spiritual conflicts forever. First, Jesus' death and resurrection triumphed over and disarmed the rulers and authorities of the kingdom of darkness (Colossians 2:15
). Prior to the cross, "All authority . . . in heaven
and on earth" had not yet been given to Christ. But Matthew 28:18
assures us that the resurrected Christ is now the seat of all authority. Because of the cross, Satan is a defeated foe and he has no authority over those who are in Christ. Affirming the truth of Christ's victory and Satan's defeat is the primary step to successfully combating the enemy's attempts to intimidate you and hassle you.
Second, in Christ's death and resurrection every believer is made alive with Him and is now seated with Him in the heavenlies (Ephesians 2:5
, 6). You no longer need an outside agent to effect authority for you; you now reside in Jesus Christ who has all authority. In order to resist the devil, you need to understand and appropriate your position and authority in Christ. Freedom is your inheritance as a Christian. It is your responsibility to put on the armor of God and resist the devil.
Prayer: Thank You, Jesus, for making me a partaker with You in defeating the devil. Help me fulfill my responsibility to resist him today.
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