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'FIRE IN THE WORD' MESSAGES BY DR. D. K. OLUKOYA
REARRANGING THE PROBLEM
Judges7: 1-7says,“Then Jerubbaal, who is Gideon, and all the people that were with him, rose up early, and pitched beside the well of Harod: so that the host of the Midianites were on the north side of them, by the hill of Moreh, in the valley. And the Lord said unto Gideon, The people that are with thee are too many for me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel vaunt themselves against me, saying, Mine own hand hath saved me. Now therefore go to, proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, Whosoever is fearful and afraid, let him return and depart early from mount Gilead. And there returned of the people twenty and two thousand; and there remained ten thousand. And the Lord said unto Gideon, The people are yet too many; bring them down unto the water, and I will try them for thee there: and it shall be, that of whom I say unto thee, This shall go with thee, the same shall go with thee; and of whomsoever I say unto thee, This shall not go with thee, the same shall not go. So he brought down the people unto the water: and the Lord said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink. And the number of them that lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, were three hundred men: but all the rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water. And the Lord said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you, and deliver the Midianites into thine hand: and let all the other people go every man unto his place.”
Israel had fallen into the sin of idolatry and this time as judgment, God permitted a vast herd of the Midianites to invade their land and rob them of their harvest. However, God raised Gideon to deliver them. The book of Judges is a book of problems, the kind of problems people encounter when they make God the tail and make themselves the head. Anytime you put God behind, there will always be problem. That was how the Israelites got into trouble.
The Lord commissioned Gideon to lead the Israelites in battle against the Midianites. In response to the Lord’s command, Gideon assembled an army by the well of Harod while the Midianites encamped somewhere in the north. Gideon had 32,000 men while the Midianites had 135,000. You can check the figures in Judges 8. That means that Gideon was facing 135,000 Midianites with 32,000 people, a ratio of about 4-1. Imagine Gideon’s feeling when God told him that his men were too many. He asked those who were afraid to go home and 22,000 of them departed leaving Him with 10,000 men to face the 135,000 Midianites. Yet to the greater astonishment of Gideon God told him that the people were still too many. Then those who went down on both knees to drink water were eliminated and those who lapped as a dog were to go for the battle.
This takes us to the issue of lack of vigilance which is one essential characteristic in people that the enemy holds tight to enable him re-arrange problems in the lives of many. I Peter 5:8 says, “Be sober, be vigilant: because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” Picture the soldiers who bowed on their knees to drink from the well, they could be attacked easily because they would have laid aside their weapons to be on their knees. They would not have seen the enemy approaching because they would have their faces buried inside the water, and the enemy would have overcome them. So, God removed them and left those who lapped like dogs. When a dog drinks inside water it does not bury its nose inside the water, it just stretches out its tongue and laps. The men who lapped went down on one knee while retaining their weapons with one hand. So, they were vigilant. In their posture, they remained alert watching for any surprise attack by the enemy.
Only 300 of the 32,000 men passed the test and the ratio now became 450:1. They started with the ratio of 4-1 but by the time the Lord had dealt with them, the ratio fell to 450-1.
We have some lessons to learn from this. The Lord says “Be vigilant.” The devil does not go on sabbatical. He never takes a holiday. When you think you need to relax and put your weapon down, the devil will release an unanticipated arrow.
The passage we read is very clear. The Almighty God looked at the 32,000 volunteers and said, “No, they are too many. Reduce the men. 22,000 went home and among the remaining 10,000 He selected only 300 and told Gideon that those were the men he should work with. What were the reasons for God’s action?
1. It is to prove that victory is from the Lord and not from man. A man may boast and say all kinds of things. He may say that he is the best man in the world. Yet victory is from the Lord and not from man. For example, nobody can scatter this country because of the prayer of the children of God. Anybody who wants to scatter it shall fall down and die. The Lord has a purpose for Nigeria, in Africa, and in the world as far as the gospel is concerned. The Bible says that it is not by power or by might but by the Spirit of the living God. So, our personal foresight, planning ability, intelligence, technological know-how, etc cannot save us in the day of trouble. Victory is from the Lord.
2. It is to prove that God does not work with photocopy. The fact that some men were not picked meant that they were not supposed to be there at all. Likewise many people just join the crowd of Christians without any conviction. God does not work on photocopy. He works on the original. Those rejected men were photocopies. They heard that there was going to be a battle and they joined, but they did not do so with conviction, so God had to discard them. Supposing you have to face persecution now for Jesus, can you be numbered among those who will stand firm?
3. It was to prove that those eliminated men were not an asset to the cause. They were a liability. They were not there wholeheartedly. They would have been a cog on the wheel of progress, so God had to remove them. I pray that every unprofitable friend, unprofitable crowd and unprofitable parasite in your life shall scatter, in the name of Jesus.
4. It is to prove that God’s strength does not depend on number. So, stop saying that you are failing because nobody is supporting you. If God supports you, then every power in the universe is behind you. It is a very bad confession to say, “I have nobody to help me.” We count people’s heads but God counts the hearts. God is interested in the heart and not the head.
A large percentage of these soldiers who bowed to drink the water took off their helmets, slacked their belts and removed their equipment, not minding the possibility of an ambush by the enemy. They forgot that they were at the warfront and that the enemy could come upon them anytime. They were drinking water as if all was well. Only those who lapped without relaxing had the real soldier spirit. They were vigilant, never once taking their eyes off their leader. They were ready to spring to action anytime. God said, “These are the ones who can walk with me.” Are you like that? Are you vigilant? Are you quick to detect sin in your life? Are you quick to notice when the Holy Spirit is saying, “Son, daughter, this is not the best for you?”
5. It is to prove that many are called but few are chosen.
It is lack of vigilance that allows the enemy to be re-arranging problems in the lives of many people. Many Christians do not realize that they are fighting very terrible and clever spirits. Jeremiah 6:14 says, “They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace.” They were patching it up when there was no peace. When you are not vigilant as a Christian, the enemy would re-arrange problems in your life.
What do we mean by re-arranging problems?
In some parts of the world, suicide rate is now very high. People commit suicide so frequently and their governments do not seem to have an answer to the problem. What they have done is to spend money training people to try to persuade those who want to kill themselves not to do so. If somebody climbs a high building and is threatening to jump down, the trained people would be invited to the scene to persuade the person not to die. But most of the time, the people being persuaded would just jump and die. Suicide attempts got so rampant in a particular hotel in one city that anytime anybody came into the hotel lobby the first question the receptionist would ask him is: “Are you staying or do you want to jump?”
In some places also, divorce rate is very high and sometimes a week after a wedding, the spouse files an action for divorce. Some couples start fighting at the altar. When the pastor says, “Read these after me,” the bride would say to the bridegroom, “What kind of voice are you using to read? Why are you reading it with an unserious voice?” Some countries have come up with a regulation that a couple cannot divorce within three years of their marriage. This only amounts to re-arranging the problem.
A TIME OF SPIRITUAL CONFLICT
The time we are living in now is a time of terrible spiritual conflicts. Although we have many Christian churches now, there are also many satanic churches around. Although we have an outpouring of the Holy Spirit, there are also intensive demonic activities.
Although we have abundant life, there is also death around. We have a lot of prosperity, and a lot of poverty too. We have a lot of love for God yet we have a lot of hatred for the Lord. Therefore, it is a time for all Christians to be very vigilant and to know that what most people sometimes describe as solution is not solution but a re-arrangement of the problem.
When you go to a herbalist, he will only re-arrange the problem. He would remove one problem and replace it with another clever one. When you go to a white garment prophet, he would trade your soul for temporary physical solution. When you go to an occultist, he would use your soul to form a covenant and give you temporary relief.
Sometime ago, a boy who had epilepsy was brought for prayer. Before then he had been taken somewhere and somebody did something after which he gave him a cross to hang over his neck. The boy thought that the problem was over only for it to get worse a few months later. When he was brought to the church, the minister of God asked him to remove the cross from his neck and break it. He did so and found in it a paper on which was scribbled the phrase, “donated to satan.” That boy thought he had been healed not knowing that all the so-called healer did for him was to re-arrange the problem.
Vigilance is very essential in these last days. The Bible says, “Be sober.” That is, “be quiet,” “be calculative,” “have a sound mind,” “be humble,” “be attentive,” “be careful.” The Bible does not stop there. It goes further to say, “Be vigilant.” Why? Because the devil, your adversary, walketh about seeking whom he may devour.
Somebody shared the testimony of a sister with me. The sister was preaching the gospel in a street and a certain man invited her to share the gospel with him. She entered the man’s house not knowing what the man had in mind. Suddenly, instead of the man to sit on the chair and listen to her, he slapped her on the chest and started chanting incantations. But everything he chanted to happen to the sister happened to him. He fell down and began to scream and beg the sister. The sister was surprised at what was happening. She did not understand why the man had to slap her on the chest when he was the one who invited her to preach to him. Meanwhile she could notice that life was going out of the man as he continued to beg her to rescue him. So, she prayed for him and he recovered. He asked the sister, “What kind of power do you have?” He told her that for the past 21 years, he had sacrificed a virgin every year to his idol. He would simply call them into his house, slap them and they would fall down and he would cut off any part of their body that he needed for his rituals.
The man could recognize a virgin if he saw one, but when he tried this sister, he met with failure. Why? It was because the sister knew her God and was obedient to Him. Unfortunately, many sisters are ashamed of preaching the gospel. Some men too, are ashamed of sharing the gospel. They fail to realise that the more you witness, the more power flows into your life.
Be vigilant for the devil, your adversary, walketh about seeking whom he may devour. If you notice that the time you spend in praying is reducing, or that your Bible reading no longer makes sense, or you find that fasting is becoming problematic and that going to church is not enjoyable to you anymore, you better shake yourself loose and start praying because the devil, your adversary, walketh about seeking whom he may devour.
The reason he is seeking whom he may devour is because he cannot devour everybody. There are some people he cannot touch. The Bible says, “Christians, seek not yet repose, hear your guardian angel say, thou art in the midst of foes, watch and pray.”
A certain sister employed a nanny. Anytime the nanny was bathing the child, the child would be screaming his head out, and after the bath too, he would continue to cry for almost an hour. One day, the sister prayed and the Lord opened her eyes and she found that the nanny was pouring pepper spiritually into the water that she was using in bathing the child. Then she understood. If you want to employ a houseboy, be vigilant. If you want to drink tea and you don’t know where it comes from, be vigilant. If you want to put something in your mouth, be vigilant. If you want to go to this party or that party, be vigilant. It is not compulsory for you to honour every invitation. Some of them may be traps.
Beloved, you must be sober and vigilant.
1. I will not abort the programme of God for my life, in Jesus’ name.
2. Oh Lord, set my inner clock for divine appointment, in the name of Jesus.
3. Every power suppressing my elevation, fall down and die, in Jesus’ name.
4. Every demonic panel set up against me, scatter unto desolation, in Jesus’ name.
5. Every satanic padlock in my hometown working against me, I command it to be roasted, in Jesus’ name.
6. Every fetish material directed against my progress, be roasted, in Jesus’ name.
7. Every meeting summoned against me by witchcraft, receive confusion, in the name of Jesus.
8. I shall laugh last, whether the enemy likes it or not, in Jesus’ name.
9. Every power keeping me low, fall down and die, in the name of Jesus.
The Dangerous Sleep
One of the places that man suffers his major defeat is in the bed. The sudden trouble of a lot of people started on their beds. One wonderful thing that God can do for you in life is to give you power over the battle of the bed. When you win that battle you will start moving the way God wants you to move. You will not become a prayer warrior if you are still in the bondage of the bed. You will not be useful to the Almighty if the bed is still your cell. You will not become anything powerful to the Almighty if you spend too long a time on your bed.
Sleep is a period of rest during which the sleeper loses the awareness of his surroundings. So, the danger in sleep is the loss of awareness. The elder brother of sleep is what medical people call “coma.” Some people are in spiritual coma. Messages and prayer do not worth anything to them. They may be at church service but would not hear what the preacher is saying because they are already dead spiritually even though they are alive physically.
When he therefore was come up again, and had broken bread, and eaten, and talked a long while, even till break of day, so he departed. And they brought the young man alive, and were not a little comforted.” This is the longest sermon in the Bible. Here was a man who had a bed at home and could have slept at home, but he did not do so but came to the house of God and decided that everything they were saying there was sleeping tablet and he started sleeping. And as he slept, his enemy that pursued him to the meeting said, “We shall use you to disgrace them here.” He slept until he fell down. If a fellow would be sleeping like that while a message is going on, it shows that he will not be useful at a night vigil. He would be a useless disciple.
2Samuel 22:35-43:“He teacheth my hands to war so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms. Thou hast also given me the shield of thy salvation, and thy gentleness hath made me great. Thou hast enlarged my steps under me, so that my feet did not slip. I have pursued mine enemies and destroyed them, and turned not again until I had consumed them. And I have consumed them, and wounded them that they could not arise, yea they are fallen under my feet. For thou hast girded me with strength to battle, them that rose up against me hast thou subdued under me. Thou hast also given me the necks of mine enemies. That I might destroy them that hate me. They looked, but there was none to save. Even unto the Lord, but he answered them not. Then did I beat them as small as the dust of the earth. I did stamp them as the mire of the street, and did spread them abroad.”
We need more troublemakers in the church today. God is looking for holy troublemakers, that is, men and women who are filled with the Holy Ghost and would stir up trouble for the enemy. Why? Because Satan is waging war against God’s people. God has called us to be soldiers. He has not called us to be parasites, benchwarmers or politicians. He has called us to be aggressive soldiers. So, He is looking for holy troublemakers, spiritually aggressive people. This year, we must get spiritually aggressive. The Bible says that our weapons of warfare are not carnal, not political, but spiritual. We alone can make the difference. The power to determine whether things go on positively or negatively rests on the church.
It is true that some people have programmed certain things into the sun, moon and the stars and thereby limiting others. It is only the church of God that can pull down these altars that are mounted above. We need to be spiritually aggressive in order to be able to do that. We need an army of troublemakers now who will stir up and challenge all the established dead churches, satanic strongholds, wicked institutions, witchcraft covens, and all the evil arrangements in the heavenlies.
There are some people who can take a person’s name and programme it into the moon and the stars because they don’t want the person to rise. And the person would never make progress and will be ruined if nothing is done urgently. So, it is not the kind of thing you smile at. It is something to be spiritually aggressive about. The Lord is looking for holy troublemakers who will challenge this kind of thing.
Sometime ago, a group of evangelists went out to preach in a place where there were a lot of satanic strongholds. They went to the first man and said, “We have come to talk to you about Jesus.” He said, “Jesus? I am coming.” By the time he came back, the first person dropped his Bible and slept off, and before you know it, all the ten of them fell down and slept off. He then woke them up and said, “Don’t come here again,” and drove them away. They quickly picked up their Bibles and ran away, totally embarrassed. Now, those were people who were supposed to be Holy Ghost filled.
We see the testimony of the apostles in Acts. 15:26 which says, “Men that have hazarded their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” They considered their lives to be nothing. They committed their lives to God and God was with them. God worked with them. Anywhere they went, signs and wonders followed them. People knew that they came there. If we are ever going to move our environment for God, we must follow their examples. In Acts 16:20, we see another testimony of those who started what we are doing now. It says, “And brought them to the magistrates, saying, These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city.” Also, Acts. 17: 6 says, “And when they found them not, they drew Jason and certain brethren unto the rulers of the city crying, These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also.”
So the kingdom of Christ has come to turn things around. Paul and Silas were two of the greatest troublemakers we see in the Bible. They were going through a city and one girl was crying after them saying, “These men are the servants of the most high God, who have come to preach the way of salvation.” The girl was saying the right thing but with the wrong spirit. Paul, the holy troublemaker, allowed the girl to cry for three days and after that he turned against the spirit inside her and rebuked it, saying, “Get out of her, you foul spirit,” and the serpentine spirit left her. When Paul cast out the demon in her and there was an uproar in the whole city. The people who were making money with her, caused trouble. Eventually, the apostles were beaten, dragged on the floor and put into the innermost part of the jail and chained. What these men did was to turn the city upside down. When they got to the prison, they started singing and commotion happened the following day. They caused an earthquake and the prison doors got broken and their chains fell off. But with all these they did not run out of the prison. When the guards wanted to kill themselves, they told them not to do so, that they would not escape. To add to this, they demanded an apology and that they be escorted out of the prison. Eventually, the authorities apologized to them and asked them to go.
God is looking for such people now. That is, men and women who understand what the Bible means by, “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the words of their testimonies. And they loved not their lives unto death,” meaning that they have donated their lives to Jesus. The Bible says that whosoever wants to save his life shall lose it.
Sometime ago, a pastor friend of mine was invited to a street which was full of herbalists. Each of their signboards was larger than that of the church. People trooped to them day and night. This annoyed the spirit of the pastor, unlike some Christians who would see this kind of thing but it would not annoy their spirit. So, everyday, at 2 a.m. the pastor went to these buildings, pointed at them one after the other and prayed like this: “You powers of darkness that are helping herbalists to operate here, evaporate from here and condense into hell fire, in Jesus’ name.” After he did this for a month, the herbalists called a meeting to decide what to do. They could not face the pastor and they waited for the day his General Overseer came. They went to the General Overseer and said, “Sir, that your dog you put here, restrain him or bring the former pastor back.” The former pastor was not disturbing them. When the General Overseer heard that, he could not believe his ears. He was amazed at the way these people with the powers of darkness spoke openly.
The truth is that God would manifest His power only to those who stand up against the forces of hell, and not to those who are still busy struggling with simple things. God would manifest His power only to those who stand against the forces of darkness and not to those who are still fighting their wives and husbands at home instead of fighting the devil. The devil may rage, the powers that be may threaten, but God has all the power, and will stand by you when you take a stand. The secret of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego was that they took a stand against the devil. The Almighty was happy with them and He came to their aid. But when you compromise, and you are neither here nor there, God, too, cannot stand by you. All the singing and praying that do not touch people’s lives must stop. The counsellors must counsel with fire. The prayer teams must take their proper positions, not the type of praying teams that would be meeting and witches are busy with their own discussions there. All the evangelism without fire must stop. The city and the country must know that Jesus is Lord.
We need more sisters who will be aggressive for Jesus; we need more brothers who will know the Bible more than they know the names of perfumes. We need more actions. We need to spit more fire.
A certain pastor came to me complaining that his church was not growing. He complained that so and so were disturbing him. I simply told him that his problem was because he had no fire in his life. I encouraged him to seek the fire of God and watch what would happen. He went back to his station, did as I told him and things began to happen. In that city which was under the stronghold of the children of the bondwoman, was a popular mad woman. Everybody knew her because she had a small dustbin in every corner of the town. One day, while the pastor and his men were clearing the ground they found her, they laid hands on her and prayed for her. Suddenly, she said, “Why am I wearing this? What am I doing here? Where are my children?” Then it was clear that she had been healed. That miracle alone brought a lot of people to the church. Before then, the pastor was busy apportioning blame. But when the fire came, he became a holy troublemaker. We must get hold of the horns of the altar and refused to let them go. What do I mean by that? It means that we should pursue the enemy by aggressive prayer and by appropriating the blood of Jesus. The Bible teaches that we must pursue our enemies and overcome them. Through the power of the Holy Spirit we can be victorious over the enemies. The enemies should be running away from us not we running away from them. For example, if you have a person who is possessed in your place of work, he should be the one avoiding you and not you avoiding him. David pursued his enemies until they were destroyed and consumed. He did not rest until his enemies were destroyed. A lot of us have become comfortable cohabiting with the enemy. But if you are wearing your full spiritual armour, the enemy should be running away from you.
Sometime ago, a madman was brought to one of our meetings. He was very violent. So, the prayer warriors prayed that the Lord should put him to sleep and he slept off. His people carried him home still sleeping. He slept for two days before he woke up. The woman with whom he was sharing a shop in the market came to the house and asked of him and was told that he was in. She did not believe it until she was led to his room where she met him sitting up, hail and hearty. She said, “What did you do to him to make him normal?” They said, “Prayers in the name of Jesus.” She went home, slept and when she woke up, she ran mad. There had been a reverse. That is what we call ‘back to sender.’
So, our prayers must be backed up with fire, and likewise our Bible reading and all our other actions. Our prayers must be backed up with our actions. Elijah was a powerful man of prayer. There is no Bible student who will dispute that. But after he had prayed, he backed up his prayers with actions. He challenged the prophets of Baal to a contest. Elijah was not the only prophet around that time. There were others who were hid in the caves and were fed with bread and water. They were silent, unknown and afraid. But Elijah, the troublemaker, came out, and even the king called him a troublemaker. He told the king that he and his father’s house were the troublers of Israel.
Elijah killed 450 prophets of Baal. I pray that you will kill your prophet of Baal today, in Jesus’ name. Elijah was not a gentleman to the devil. He openly mocked the prophets of Baal. He knew that Baal had powers but just as he had locked up heaven and put the keys in his pocket, he locked up the powers of Baal. He knew that they were not going to come there. So he mocked and ridiculed them. Gentlemen don’t do things like that.
The Bible says that the righteous shall be as bold as the lion. Jesus Himself was a troublemaker. He drove people away from the temple and called the religious leaders of His time serpents, the blind, white sepulchers and brood of vipers. He even said to some people, “You are of your father, the devil.” Those were not the words of a gentleman.
Unfortunately, many churches today are filled with silent, delicate and fragile gentlemen and women, spiritual diplomats who do not want any trouble. They would say, “I like the way I am doing my own things quietly, I don’t want to be too fanatical. If I go beyond this, my family members will call a meeting and ask me to take it easy with this my new religion.” That is why the Skingdom of the Lord is called an upside down kingdom. The values of the world are not ours. What the world cherishes is dung to us. We do not run after the same things as the world because we know that our citizenship is not here. We are going to a better country,
a city without foundation. So, there are certain things that we do not bother ourselves about. ome people would say, “Stop preaching to me. Don’t pray for me anymore. Don’t force your religion on me” They would scream and scream, but such things do not bother holy troublemakers. They still continue. I read a story about a man called Charles Finney. One day, as he was taking a stroll, he found a man leaning on a pole, smoking hemp. He went to the man and said, “Jesus loves you. Why are you smoking this?” The man got angry and told him that what he was doing with his life was none of his business. Mr. Finney smiled and said, “With due respect, sir, what you are doing concerns me. As an evangelist, it is my business.” The fellow asked him to get away. He went away. But three nights later, somebody came banging on his door. When he opened the door, he found the same man he had preached the gospel to crying. The man said, “Since the night you spoke to me I have had no peace. I want to give my life to Jesus.” That was how the man got born again. THE MINISTRY OF PHILIP
This is a year that every serious Christian should receive Philip’s kind of ministry. What is Phillip’s kind of ministry? Act 8: 5-8 s; “Then Phillip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them and the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them, and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. And there was great joy in that city.” Philip was not an ordained pastor. He was just a layman filled with the Holy Ghost. He was not a pulpit man but a layperson who believed in the power of the Holy Ghost. Philip went everywhere expecting miracles to happen. He was the man of the marketplace but he caused things to happen. We need to imbibe his kind of ministry.
For Christians to make an impact on the nation or city where they are, they must become Christ-consumed and Holy Spirit-filled like Philip. We must become evangelists with faith to cast out evil spirits and pray for salvation and healing of others. Don’t stay where you were last year. Some people before they were blessed with cars, came to services early. Now that they have cars they come late and give all kinds of excuses. If they do not say that the carburetor of their car is faulty, they would say that their drivers came late. So, they are blaming God for the breakthrough. Where do we go from here?
A certain minister was sent to a town in the West African coast region. When he got there, he decided to visit the chief priest whom he learnt was the one causing trouble in the place. The chief priest said, “My dear pastor, I will demonstrate something to you now." He picked a piece of maize and placed it on his palm and instantly the maize started to grow on his palm. The pastor watched him and was very scared. The chief then asked him if his God could do that. He did not have an answer, and he quickly looked for an excuse and ran back to Nigeria. Later, another minister was posted there. He also went to the chief priest, who began to demonstrate his demonic power again. He put the maize in his palm and it started to grow as usual. The brother watched, and the priest said, “Can your God do this?” The brother said, “No. My God does not waste time on things like this but I will show you a little bit of what my God can do. He then opened his mouth and said, “You satanic maize, be roasted, in the name of Jesus.” And the chief priest cried out, “My hand, my hand.” After the maize had roasted, the fire began to burn his hand.” The brother had to pray for his hand to heal. That was a troublemaker.
Where do we go from here? Do we want to continue our Christian race with such complaints as ‘something is pressing me down on my bed’, ‘something is pursuing me.’ or ‘I saw a snake.’ ‘I saw water and I wanted to cross and one woman said I should not cross?’ Would we allow the children of the bondwoman and the children of darkness to sit on our wealth and we will be watching them and believe that well, one day, something will happen? No. Nothing will happen until we begin to pray and address what should be addressed. Then things will start changing. The spirit of demonic silence must go. Many of us are too quiet about the things of God.
If you are a boss somewhere, buy tracts, put them on your table and distribute to those who come to see you. Don’t sit in the bus and sleep. If you open your mouth wide and preach, there is no way you will fall asleep. God will only commit Himself to those who will take a stand.
Create time for evangelism. The reason God puts you where you are is for you to reach out to some people. And if you are a failure there, it will be a disaster for the Almighty. You never know what you can do until you try.
Sometime ago, the daughter of a certain sister had a mental problem and she was very wild. She took her to the hospital where she was given a special room because the drugs were not working. She bounced on anybody who tried to enter into the room. One day, the sister listened to a message entitled, “You, the sleeping giant, stir up yourself.” After listening to the message, she went to the hospital and asked to see her daughter. They told her to talk to her from the window. She said no, that she would like to enter the room. She entered and when the daughter saw her, she became wild. But the sister said, “In the name of Jesus, you wild beast, come out of her now.” It was as if she gave a punch to the girl. She fell down and straightaway she said, “Mummy.” She became calm as she was delivered from the evil spirit troubling her.
The sister was shocked that she could do it. God will not commit Himself to those who would just sit down at home, or to men who after Sunday service, would sit down at home and watch television, who are not interested in house fellowship or group activities.
1. Anything programmed into the moon and the star against me, I dismantle you, in Jesus’ name.
2. Lay your hands on your head and say: Power, prosperity and purity, fall upon me now, in Jesus’ name.
3. Any evil thing programmed into this week against me, I dismantle you, in Jesus’ name.
4. Lord, I need your strength; I want to move out for you, in Jesus’ name.
5. Any sickness programmed into my life, fall down and die, in the name of Jesus.
6. Every evil thing programmed into my life, fall down and die, in the name of Jesus.
7. I disconnect my life from every spirit of failure, in Jesus’ name.
8. My life, refuse to invite failure, in the name of Jesus.
9. Holy Spirit, overshadow my life, in Jesus’ name.
10. The enemy that does not want to let me go, be buried alive, in the name of Jesus.
11. Every evil bird monitoring my life, I pluck out your eyes, in Jesus’ name.
BIBLICAL PRINCIPLE OF LONG LIFE
In the last few years, we have witnessed or heard about a lot of tragedy. People that were expected to be alive were dead. A lot of young people were dead and some of them were born again. Is it God’s will? No. We must also realize that the devil has some powers to kill but the only strongest power is the power of God. Just as the Bible has principles for long life, it also outlines what could cause short life.
God’s original plan for man was life not death, health not sickness, energy not weariness and radiance not dullness. So, if Brother Adam had not sinned, he would have lived forever. The Bible emphasizes that God is not interested in short life. One man of God said that it was a tragedy for a plant to die at the seed stage because it could not become a plant. A situation where young people are dying shows that a lot of things are going wrong.
“Now these are the commandments, the statutes, and the judgments, which the Lord your God commanded to teach you, that ye might do them in the land whither ye go to possess it. That thou mightiest fear the Lord thy God to keep all his statutes and his commandments which I command thee, thou, and thy son, and thy son’s son, all the days of thy life; and that thy days may be prolonged.”
Here, we can see that God is not interested in short life. Job 5:26 also says,
“Thou shalt come to thy grave in a full age, like as a shock of corn cometh in his season.”
Proverbs 3:3 : “My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments. For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee. Let not mercy and truth forsake thee, bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart”.
Proverb 9:11: “For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased.”
Proverbs 10:27: “The fear of the Lord prolongeth days: but the years of the wicked shall be shortened.”
God is not interested in short life for His children.
Proverbs 16:31: “The hoary head is a crown of glory, if it be found in the way of righteousness.”
That is, if you hair is gray it is a crown of glory if you are in the way of righteousness.
Psalm 90:10: “The days of our years are three score years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow. For it is soon cut off, and we fly away.”
This verse is a curse and not a blessing. It is the minimum, which a lot of people now claim whereas they should not claim it. But even this minimum, which is a curse, is difficult for a lot of people to attain.
Psalm 91:16: “With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.”
Isaiah 65:22: “They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.”
The Bible is telling us that it is a tragedy for somebody to sweat to gather, but before he would begin to reap the fruits, he dies.
Ecclesiastes 6: 1-2: “There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, and it is common among men. (The Bible calls it an evil thing). A man to whom God has given riches, wealth and honour, so that he wanteth nothing for his soul of all that he desireth, yet God giveth him not power to eat thereof, but a stranger eateth it, this is vanity, and it is an evil disease."
Six major ways by which people die on earth
1. A person can die by his own hand: This is when a person just destroys himself, for example, by personal execution, personal murder, or assassination. It is possible for a person to eliminate himself. Sometime ago, a man fainted in the street and people rushed to help him. By the time a doctor that was passing by got there, he found a packet of drugs in his pocket, which he must have taken. As a medical personnel, he found out that they were hard drugs which he ought not to have taken. But he went to the chemist bought it and swallowed it. He decided to kill himself.
2. A person can die by the hands of another man. It may be robbers, witches or wizard, etc
3. A person can die by fear, especially the fear of death.
4. A person can die by breaking natural laws. For example, if a person decides to jump down from the top of a 25-storey building he would die. Or if a person knows that he cannot swim, but decides to go and swim, it could lead to his death.
5. A person can die by succumbing to the aging process. When everything in the body is old, the system may stop working.
6. A person can die by sickness or disease.
What Are The Causes Of Short Life?
1. Disobedience to parents:
“Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise. That it may be well with thee and thou mayest live long on the earth.”
If you don’t honour your father and mother, the reverse too will be the case, and that is untimely death. You may say that your parents are very bad, but any assignment that the Lord has given to you, you must do. We are not taught to hate any human being but if there is any evil spirit within them walking against our destiny, we must contend with the evil spirit. The Bible says
“that we wrestle not against blood and flesh, but against principalities , against powers, against rulers of darkness of this world and against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).
Also, the Bible says that he who does not look after his family is worse than an infidel. You may say, “But anytime I give them money, they use it against me.” Anoint the money and send it. A lot of young people are dying today because they decided not to listen to their parents’ cry. Some will go out with their fathers' cars after their fathers have warned them several times not to drive the cars. They decide to do otherwise and their corpses are brought home.
2. Not walking in the way of the Lord: Failure to walk in the way of the Lord will bring short life. Deuteronomy 5:33:
“Ye shall walk in all the ways which the Lord thy God had commanded you, that ye may live and that it may be well with you, and that he may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess.”
When you walk in the part of righteousness, the Lord will prolong your life. The Lord has no obligation to protect you when He knows that your life is a disgrace to Him.
3. Failure to teach the word of God at home: If you fail to teach the word of God at home, it leads to short life.
Deuteronomy 11:19-21: “And ye shall teach your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shall write them upon the doorposts of thine house, and upon thy gates. That thy days may be multiplied, and the days of your children, in the land which the Lord sware unto your fathers to give them, as the days of heaven upon the earth.”
4. Not fearing the Lord: Proverb 10:27 says,
“The fear of the Lord prolongeth days; but the years of the wicked shall be shortened.”
Please, note very well that nothing happens by chance; everything is programmed in the spirit. There is nothing like a stray bullet or somebody using cutlass on you accidentally. It has been programmed in the spirit. What will make these seeming accidents not to happen are the kinds of things we are talking about in this message.
The fear of God is rapidly jumping out of the house of God now. People are not afraid of God any more. They dress anyhow, talk anyhow, and insult the men of God without knowing that they are inviting curses upon themselves. When you insult a man of God, his anointing will fight you, the blood of Jesus will fight you, the angels will fight you, anything can fight against you. The fear that people had when they got born again in those days is fading out. We need to bring that fear back into the house of God. You need to fear the Lord from the bottom of your heart and know that there are certain things you cannot do. It may be convenient and comfortable for others but you cannot do them. There are certain things that a Christian does not touch at all because of the fear of the Lord. It is these days that people come to the house of the Lord with chewing gum in their mouth. Sometimes it seems as if the Lord was not quick in punishing us. But we must not take that for granted because the devil would be doing a deeper harm.
Do you fear the Lord? If you do, then your days will be long, but if you don’t, your days will be short. Some people talk to the Lord anyhow. For example, they would say, “I am sorry Lord, that I committed that sin, this is not the first time. Any way you wrote that even if my sin is as red as scarlet it will become as white as snow, so forgive me for I am a human being.” They command God to forgive them without fear. In those days, people used to cry at the altar showing godly sorrow for their sins. There is no fear of God again, believers fall into fornication and all kinds of sins and still smile, saying that there is a limit to human endurance. These are the causes of short lives. When arrows are fired in the spirit world it goes around looking for loopholes. If they see that there is no fear of God in your life, although you are coming to the house of God, they would enter into your life.
5.Failure to control the tongue:
I Peter 3:10 says, “For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile.”
One of the greatest causes of short life is the tongue. If it were possible to padlock the mouth of human beings, a lot of people would not have died when they died. Many have gone into bondage because of their tongues. It is not everything that we have to say. Sometimes you just have to keep quiet. Most of the time it is better to listen. If your tongue has no control and you can speak 200 words per minute then you are writing an invitation to short life. Some people can talk and abuse an angel of God without knowing that the fellow that they are talking to is an angel of God, and they end up inviting curses because angels don’t operate like us. They don’t tolerate indiscipline and they can be easily provoked. That was why God warned the Israelites: “I will place my angel before you to go on the way that you will go but take heed that you do not provoke him. If you do, he will not pardon you. Don’t provoke him because he does not understand the word “please”. The angel did not forgive Zechariah when he doubted him and said, “Can these things be? I am old and my wife is advanced in age.” The angel said, “I am Gabriel, I came from the throne of God to give you this message and you are talking rubbish. For that, you shall be dumb.” He had to close his mouth and send him on a compulsory holiday. The tongue has killed so many people. I pray that the Lord will deliver us from the trap of the tongue, in Jesus’ name.
6.Pursuing evil: Proverbs 11:19 says, “As righteousness tendeth to life: so he that pursueth evil pursueth it to his own death.” If you are pursuing an evil agenda, you are doing so at your own hurt.
5. Forgetting the laws of God: This leads to short life.
6. Allowing an evil weight on your heart:
Proverbs 17:22: , “The merry heart doeth good like medicine but a broken spirit drieth the bones.” So, when you allow evil weight in your heart or when you allow a spiritual wound in your heart, you will waste away. Whatever is in your heart, whether it is envy, anger, cruelty, fear, immorality, it would affect your body, soul and spirit. Many people do not understand that what goes on in the heart determines whether the body, soul and spirit will be healthy or not. Many sicknesses can be directly related to the attitude of the heart. Proverb 14:30 says, “A sound heart is the life of the flesh: but envy the rottenness of the bones.” When a heart is polluted with bitterness, anger, malice or is filled with sin, it will shorten the life span of the person. If all you are thinking about is sin and lust, it means that you want to die young. Eventually, you might develop high blood pressure.
7. Wounded heart and negative emotions: This can cause all kinds of sicknesses. It means people are being cruel to themselves.
8. Lack of knowledge of spiritual prevention: This also shortens life. An English adage says that prevention is better than cure. God wants the totality of our being to be in good health and not for us to be seeking for healing. It is better to be immune than to have a disease and start taking
drugs. The word of God shows clearly that Christians are supposed to have some immunity. To have immunity is better than having to evacuate the enemy anytime he gains entrance. So, we have to clothe ourselves with the fire of God and the blood of Jesus so that the enemy will not gain entrance.
Prevention, even in the spiritual world, is better than cure. Some people say that it is because they were living in a particular town that they were having a particular problem. But when they moved to another town, the problem continues. Some, even when they move to another accommodation, witches would still be pressing them down on their beds. Such people should realize that it is because the enemy has entered inside them. The evil dreams are being played from inside. A man may sleep and another world opens up to him. Sometime ago, we were praying with somebody and a whole human being wearing rags walked out of him. The man and ourselves saw the thing left. It waved at the man and he waved back. Later, for the first time in his life, he had a financial breakthrough. It would have been better not to allow the spirit to enter into him than for it to enter and he had to go on seven days dry fasting. Many believers find it very hard to memorize scriptures. Some will tell you that their brains are getting older, whereas unbelievers spend quality time memorizing incantations, which they use against the children of God. The word of God says that we can build a hedge around us, which the enemy cannot penetrate.
There are some passages in the Bible that believers should know off hand, if they want prevention and protection and do not want the enemy to shorten their lives. We call them immunity scriptures
1. Exodus 15:26: says, “If thou will diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and will give ear to his commandment, and keep all these statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee. Which I have brought upon the Egyptians for I am the Lord that health thee.”
2. Deuteronomy 7:15: “And the Lord will take away from thee all sicknesses, and will put none of the evil disease of Egypt, which thou knoweth, upon thee, but will lay them upon all them that hate thee.”
3. Isaiah 43:2: “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee, and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee, when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” This is talking about immunity against the waters of tribulation, immunity against the rivers of trouble and immunity against the fire of affliction.4.
5. Psalm 46:1: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
6. Psalm 27:1-2: “The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?. When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.”
7. Psalm 91:1: “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” This Psalm tells us about immunity against the power of the night. It might interest you to know that most people do not sleep at night. The Psalm also talks about the arrow that flies by the day. It tells us about immunity against pestilence that walks about in darkness. It tells us about the power that causes destruction at noonday. It talks about power against the lion and the dragon. It talks about immunity against evil in all its ramifications.
8. Psalm 105: 14-15: “He suffered no man to do them wrong, yea he reproved kings for their sake, saying, Touch not my anointed and do my prophet no harm.”
10. Psalm 34:7: “The angel of the Lord encampeth around about them that fear him and delivereth them.”
11. Proverbs 3:24: “When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid; yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet.”
12. Mark 16:18: “They shall take up serpents and if they drink any deadly thing it shall not hurt them, they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
13. Luke 10:19: “Behold I give unto you power to tread upon serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy and nothing shall by any means hurt you.”
My prayer is that your spiritual immunity shall not break down, in Jesus' name. We have so many outstanding promises that God will protect us, but if we break certain laws this immunity will break down. If you don’t know what to do or you do the wrong thing your immunity can break down. So many things can break down the immunity. For example, wrong attitude. If somebody hurts you and you harbour resentment in your heart against him the enemy can see the dark cloud in your heart and that will break down your immunity.
Following the fashion of the world is another way you can break down your immunity. When someone lets you down or disappoints you and you begin to broadcast it to the whole world, your immunity will be broken down. When you pay evil for evil, when you decide to pay people back in their own coin, your immunity will break down. When you are very angry and you throw tantrums on people, your immunity will break down. Calling people insulting names, gossiping and not forgiving those that have hurt you will make your immunity to break down. All the demonic jewelries that people put on make their immunity to break down. Demonic herbal concoctions and other terrible things that people swallow make immunity to break down.
Leviticus 17:11: “For the life of the flesh is in the blood and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls, for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.”
For you to be healthy and be moving about without any sickness, your blood must be immune. All the diseases that are available actually drink people’s blood. If a person loses a lot of blood, and nothing is done to restore it, he will soon die. Malaria is a terrible disease because it sucks people’s blood and uses it to produce more of its kind. Surely every sickness came as the result of the failure of Adam and Eve.
Somebody had a fever in the Bible. Let us see what Jesus did.
Luke 4:38: “And he arose out of the synagogue, and entered into Simon’s house. And Simon’s wife’s mother was taken with a great fever and they besought him for her. And he stood over her and rebuked the fever and it left her and immediately she arose and ministered unto them.” It means that you can talk to the fever or to your blood. You may say that this is madness. That would not be strange, after all, people said that Jesus and Paul were mad.
But when you learn to pray the following prayer points, you give yourself immunity:
1 . Let the blood of Jesus be transfused into my blood, in Jesus’ name.
2. I render my blood untouchable to any disease, in Jesus’ name.
When you pray like this, any disease that comes in contact with your blood will die. There are so many other things that you can do. For example, you can anoint your body or put the anointing oil in your cream. You must be careful the kind of food you eat. You must always pray on your food and your water. Make sure you don’t over eat things.
The children of darkness often fortify and prepare themselves because they know that they can be attacked, but sometime the children of God are so foolish that they don’t fortify themselves. In the light of this, I want you to pray the following prayer points aggressively.
1. (Lay your hands on your head): I challenge my body with the fire of God, in Jesus’ name.
2. Every evil eternal enemy, come out by fire, in the name of Jesus.
3. O God, establish your kingdom in every department of my life, in the name of JesusIsaiah 54:17: “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.” Zechariah 2:5: “For I saith the Lord will be unto her a wall of fire around about her and will be the glory in the midst of her.” Verse 8: “For thus saith the Lord of hosts, after the glory hath he sent me unto the nations, which soiled you for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eyes.”
Deliverance from the rod of the wicked
Our message this week is entitled, “Deliverance from the rod of the wicked.” Psalm 125: 1-3: “They that trust in the Lord shall be as mount Zion. Which cannot be removed, but abideth forever. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people from henceforth even forever. For the rod of the wicked shall not rest upon the lot of the righteous.” This is the living God declaring that the rod of the wicked that has been resting upon the lot of the righteous for some time now will no longer rest upon them, “lest the righteous put forth their hands unto iniquity.” That is a very loaded verse. It explains why some people do what is unexpected of them. When you see people behaving in a way that is not expected of respectable people, you should know that the rod of the wicked has rested on them and their own righteousness has been taken into iniquity. I pray that anybody under the rod of the wicked will receive deliverance by fire, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Isaiah 14:1-5: “For the Lord will have mercy on Jacob, and will yet choose Israel, and set them in their own land, and the strangers shall be joined with them, and they shall cleave to the house of Jacob. And the people shall take them, and bring them to their place and the house of Israel shall possess them in the land of the Lord for servants and handmaids; and they shall take them captives whose captives they were and they shall rule over their oppressors. And it shall come to pass in the day that the Lord shall give thee rest from thy sorrow, and from thy fear, and from the hard bondage wherein thou wast made to serve. That thou shalt take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased the golden city ceased! The Lord hath broken the staff of the wicked, and the sceptre of the rulers.”
The Lord will break the staff of the wicked upon your life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
The rods of the wicked come in various shapes, colours and sizes. When the enemies desire to terminate the good things in a life, they may plant their rod in such a life or in his or her home. Sometimes, they carry the wicked rod on their head and stay with the person.
There was a certain man who dealt in cars. He travelled to bring new cars to his base. But anytime he went for the new vehicles, the ones that were supposed to be his profit would have accident. He did everything to stop the misfortune but it did not stop. He began to lose his profit and his capital was affected. The number of vehicles he bought reduced to 15 from 24. When the situation became very bad, he decided to go to the mountain to pray. His only prayer point was “Oh Lord, give every enemy of my life a knock, in the name of Jesus.” He prayed with all his might and came back home. On getting back home, they set food for him to eat and he asked for his mother. The mother came and as they were eating, the mother said, “Do you know that one of your naughty children came to give me a knock?” The man then said, “Excuse me, mummy, I went out since morning. Please, allow me to eat my food.” As the man was eating, his mother received the second and the third knock. After she received the third knock she could no longer sit. The man carried her to the bedroom and he asked her what happened and she asked back what happened. The man, being a prayer warrior, started praying again and as he said “in Jesus name,” God asked him, “Who asked you to pray now?" He said, “My mother is sick.” God said, “Were you not the one who said I should give her a knock?” Then the man understood and said, “We would use the price of one car to do her burial,” because the mother died in the process. That was how the rod of the wicked stopped operating in his life.
When you want to do anything open your heart to the Holy Spirit and He will open your understanding. The rod of the wicked symbolizes the authority of the enemy in your life. The rod that we are talking about, the enemy operates with it to punish people. It comes at different stages of a person’s life. For some people, this rod manifests in their life right from the womb when some people have a quarrel with their parents.
A minister of God got married and was expecting that a baby would come in the first year. He and his wife prayed and fasted but up to the sixth year no baby came. They did not understand what was going on. They continued to pray. In the eighth year of their marriage they had a baby. The baby started growing and one day, they decided to visit their people in their village. As they got to the village their parents were so happy and thanked God that they had the baby. The baby started running about. As he was doing so, its grand-parents said to its parents: “Come, you don’t know this village, don’t allow your son to run about too much.” But the minister and his wife laughed and said, “Don’t bother about that. We prayed for him, no evil would befall him.” As the boy was running about, an old man came to the minister and said, “Come, I want to see you.” They told him that the man was the head of the wicked people in the village that he should not go near him. But he said, “no problem” and went to see him. As he entered the old man’s house, the man said, “My son, welcome. I have something to show you.” And the man removed his cap and on his head were nails all over. The minister wondered how the man could get nails all over his head. Then the old man now said to the minister: “I will tell you the story. When you were getting married, we were three in number and we said that nothing good would come from the marriage and we started to fight you. Any time your wife got pregnant we removed it. But something started to happen. We would all sit in our homes and a man would come with a nail and a hammer, put the nail on our heads, hammer it and walk out. The other two are dead and the man told me the last time that there was no more space on my head to put the nail, that he was going to put it in my chest. That was why I said, okay it is because I am holding your wife from having a child and I removed my hand so that the man would no longer give me nail. That is why you are able to have that baby. He asked for the name of the boy and the minister told him and he said, “My son, can you forgive me?” The minister answered that he should ask God to forgive him. He said, “Good day, sir” and the man left.
The Lord that could locate the enemy of this family will locate your own, in Jesus name. Amen.
The living God made a declaration: He said He was always angry with the wicked.
WHAT AREAS DO THESE WICKED RODS ATTACK MOSTLY
1. They attack the whole life of a person, the one called destiny. When they lay their rod of wickedness upon the destiny of a person the person will find it difficult to excel in simple things.
2. They attack marriages.
3. They attack the vision of a person.
4. They lay the rod on the business of some people. When this happens, the people would just be there. They will not have anything to show that they are doing business.
5. They attack parts of a person’s body, for example, the womb, the reproductive organ, the hand, the legs, the heart, etc.
What do they usually achieve or what do they want to promote when they lay this rod of wickedness on a person?
1. They want to promote scarcity of blessing. If there is a regular flow of good things into that life, they will terminate it.
2. They use this rod to direct a person into a contrary path and the person will think he is still on the right path.
3. They promote frustration. A young man came to us about two years ago. He had a good job with a Federal Government establishment and was doing fine. But he suddenly packed his load and ran to a place he had no job. People asked him why he came there and he said that the people at the place from where he ran wanted to kill him. They asked him to explain how they wanted to kill him, he said that any time he entered his office, his head would be turning and he was frustrated. They frustrated him so that he did not see anything good in that job and he had to leave the place.
4. They promote hardship. Something that should not take more than six weeks will take nine to ten months. When you don’t challenge this rod, it leads to death. When it is laid upon a person it demotes the person spiritually. But the enemy should not rejoice over our lives.
5. It promotes emotional turbulence. It brings problems that will make you say: “I had not been having this kind of problem. Why now? I pray, I fast and I am closer to the Lord. Why now? It is because the rod is laid on you.
6. They promote sloughtfulness. Sometimes some people would say, “I cannot do more than I am doing now. If anybody wants to die let him die.” Where they ought to run they will be crawling.
When do these enemies lay their rods
¨ When your star is shining. ''When you are doing better things.
¨ When your hopelessness is disappearing.
¨ When the joy of your accomplishment is increasing.
¨ When you come forward and say, “Praise the Lord. When I came to this place I was trekking but now I have bought a car.
¨ When your breakthrough is visible.
¨ When you say, “I want to rest from all my labour. Let me relax with what I have now and serve the Lord."
A man and his wife retired and were doing fine with their children. They lived in their own house. All of a sudden some people came to the man and told him that they would help him to do fast moving business whose turnover would be great. Without telling his wife, the man went to the bank and collected all their savings. And they told him that the money would not be enough that he should bring the papers of their house. Without telling his wife he also gave them the papers. Weeks later, some people came and said, “We give you four days to leave this place.” The wife asked what they were talking about, and told them that the house belonged to her and her family. They told her that she was joking and showed her the papers. The woman ran to her husband and asked him to come and hear what she was hearing. And the man said, "It is true. I did not know how to tell you. Some people did business with me and I gave them the papers." The woman nearly tore the man to pieces. The man said they would look for a house to rent.
They come when you think nothing can harm you.
They come when you are experiencing the power of the world.
They come when you start to experience the Holy Spirit.
They come when you are standing for God’s honour and righteousness more than you have ever done in your life before.
A minister of God arranged a crusade at which God told him that the devil would be disgraced. He gathered his team together, prayed and fasted for the meeting. As the crusade started, he discovered that all the ministers sitting behind him started leaving one after the other.He wondered what was happening but continued his preaching until he was the only one left there. Later somebody in the congregation came forward and said that he wanted to give his life to Jesus. The minister said it was not yet time for that. Later the man said the minister had the spirit that could not be killed. He said he came to the altar with a cane to beat all the ministers, that is, he laid a rod upon all of them and that made them to leave. But as he was beating the minister, the minister became stronger, that was why he said, “This one has the power that I should not play with,” and decided to give his life to that power.
What must we do now?
Beloved, you need to understand that when the rod is operating in a person’s life or in a family, bitterness comes in just like that. You would see that you are just bitter but cannot explain the cause of the bitterness. When you begin to have worldly wisdom instead of the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, and you say, “If I do this thing, there will be nothing bad with it," then the rod is around the corner. When you avoid your night vigils and say, “Body no be stone,” the rod is around the corner looking for you. However, God has a declaration for us in Isaiah 60: 18. It says, “... But thou shalt call thy walls Salvation and thy gates Praise.”
There are five steps to take before you pray:
1. Understand that it is only the living God that can deliver you from the rod of the wicked.
2. Do a thorough self-examination. If you are not born again yet, get born again.
3. Start to walk in the perfect way of God.
4. Refuse to habour pride in your heart.
5. Call upon the Lord for deliverance from this wicked rod.
If you pray the following prayer points very well, the God that answereth by fire will answer you by fire, in Jesus' name.
1. Oh Lord, give the enemy of my progress the knock of death, in the name of Jesus.
2. Oh Lord, visit my enemies in a wonderful way that they will never forget your anger, in the name of Jesus.
3. Every wicked rod in my family, receive the fire of God and burn to ashes, in Jesus’ name.
4. You wicked authority dragging my life behind, be paralysed by fire, in Jesus’ name.
5. (Hold your head:) My head, reject the influence of the rod of the wicked, in the name of Jesus.
6. Blood of Jesus, deliver my head from the authority of the wicked, in Jesus’ name.
7. You rod of the wicked, I terminate your affairs in my marriage, in Jesus’ name.
8. You wicked rod that is opposing my open heaven, roast, in the name of Jesus.
9. I release my reproductive system from the authority of the wicked by fire, in the name of Jesus.
10.(Put your two hands together and pray:) Oh Lord, accelerate your glory in my life by fire, in the name of Jesus.
Power to trouble your trouble
Psalm 46:1-11:,“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed and though the mountain be carried into the midst of the sea. Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most high. God is in the midst of her, and that right early. The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved; he uttered his voice, the earth melted. The Lord of hosts is with us, the God of Jacob is our refuge. Come behold the works of the Lord, what desolation he hath made in the earth. He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth. He breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder, he burneth the chariot in the fire. Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted in the earth. The Lord of hosts is with us, the God of Jacob is our refuge.”
Somebody once said that life was like an onion: you can peel off one layer at a time but as you do so, its juice gets into your eyes and causes your eyes to be filled with tears. There is something that is known as the trouble of life. I read a comment by one man of God called Matthew Henry. Somebody stole his things and the people around him found out that he was not sad about it. So, they asked him why and he said something that shocked me. He said: “I thank God that it was not me that was stolen and that I was not the robber.” That was his way of looking at the case. Sometimes we look so long at closed doors that we do not see the great ones the Lord has opened unto us.
HOW DO YOU TROUBLE YOUR TROUBLE?
Daniel 10:12 :, “Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words.” This means that the angel was carrying the answer to Daniel’s prayer for 21 days and somewhere along the line something stood against him saying, “Sorry, you will not give this answer to this man. Although God has answered, and asked you to go and supply this thing to this man, you are not passing here.” He was contending with the angel. Verse 13 says, “But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.”
The battle against the angel bringing the answer to Daniel was so great that Michael had to come and assist him. What God did was to open the veil of the spiritual world so that he could see what was going on.
The Bible says that there are three heavens. The first one is the one you see when you lift up your eyes, that is where the airplanes travel. Above that is another one where airplanes dare not go. If they move high to that level, they would be lost forever. That is the second heaven. When people say that whatever goes up must come down, it is when it does not go beyond the first heavens; if it goes beyond that, it will just be floating about there and will not come down again. This is the arena of the dark spirits; the headquarters of the kingdom of darkness, the kingdom of Lucifer and Leviathan. But above that is another heaven, which the Bible calls “the heaven of heavens.” It is the third heaven. That is where you find the paradise and the throne of God.
CHECKPOINT OF DARKNESS
The devil sets up a checkpoint at the second heaven. A checkpoint of darkness is a place of fierce warfare. That is why the kind of prayer required to destroy the checkpoint is volcanic and bulldozing kind of prayer, prayer with holy anger, prayer with inner fire, prayer with holy hatred, prayer with your spiritual blood boiling. Good and bad spirits fight there. Sympathetic and unsympathetic spirits fight there as well. There is a battle between truth and falsehood and a battle between light and darkness there. It is a place of wicked confiscation. It is a place of wicked storage in the warehouse of the enemy. It is a place of unprofitable delays. It is a place of destiny destruction. It is a place of wicked spiritual accidents.
Many good things belonging to the children of God are confiscated at evil checkpoints and stored in satanic warehouses. For example, success, children, money, prosperity, wedding gowns, breakthroughs, health, etc. Body parts are stored in these evil warehouses. Many people are walking about the streets without their real selves. Their real selves have been locked up and their blessings stored in the second heaven. That is why the Bible says that no man enters into the house of a strongman and plunders his goods except he first of all binds the strongman. The strongman himself does not have any personal goods, what he guides is what he confiscates from people. The warehouse of the enemy has a gateman and the gateman is the strongman.
Please, take the following prayer point: “I clear my blessings from the warehouse of the strongman, in the name of Jesus.”
It is at this checkpoint that prayer battles take place. This is why prayer is hard work. Sometimes the angel of our blessings get stuck unless you can pray fire prayers to release him. This is why the enemy does not like anybody to pray. Your prayer must be sharp and violent enough to bring answers down. The powers in the second heaven can return your prayers back to you. Imagine the battle in the second heaven for three weeks involving the angel bringing an answer to Daniel’s prayer.
Daniel’s continuous bombardment of that checkpoint reinforced the heavenly army. If Daniel had not been serious with the prayer, the answer would not have come.
Check the level of your purity today. Your purity and violence determine the effectiveness of your prayers. Check whether the enemy has a foothold in your life.
Everything that comes down to us from God passes through the second heaven. There is a spiritual border there with satanic immigration and custom officers. It is at this point that a household strongman stays. That is why we pray that our prayers should become hot coals of untouchable fire. Many prayers go up and bring down nothing. I pray that your prayers shall not be so, in the name of Jesus.
A certain brother called James prayed with aggression for a wife and the Lord called an angel and said, “Angel, take this sister down to him.” When the angel got to the checkpoint at the second heaven, they asked him where he was going and he answered, “I want to go and give a wife to Brother James.” They said, “Sorry, hold on, let us call his ancestral strongman. That one came and said, “Angel, you cannot give him this wife because his own spirit wife is here.” His grandmother has a covenant with us here, therefore, you cannot take this girl to him. Apart from that, his grandfather signed a covenant with us here that all the men from his family must marry witches and this one you are taking there is not a witch. So, angel, return the wife.” The angel returned the wife.
A brother prayed asking for promotion. But as the angel was taking the promotion to him, he was stopped at the second heaven. They asked him where he was gong and he said, “I am going to Brother Johnson Oko. They said, “Sorry, we don’t have that name here. His real name is not Johnson Oko but Fadeyi, therefore you cannot take this to him. His mother had him for another man and transferred him to the wrong father. His real father is Fadeyi. So, go back.” And the angel went back.
Also a sister, Bimpe, prayed to God asking for promotion. She said, “O God, I pay my tithe, but no progress, why? And the queen of heaven turned up with the angel bringing the promotion and said, “You cannot giver her this promotion because here is a list of 40 men she has slept with and 39 of them are our agents. So, she is not going anywhere.
Beloved, this is why we must pray. It can a terrible thing when your battle has been transferred to the checkpoint and you don’t know what to do. The first way to trouble your trouble is to deal with the checkpoint of darkness. Once you attack the evil checkpoint a signal goes into the dark world indicating that you are trying to be free, and they get reinforcement. If you give up at this level, you will lose the answer. Prayers to address evil checkpoints are not prayers on the horizontal level but on a vertical one. You must be sure of what you are doing. A person may come from an area where they have formed a geographical covenant that nobody in that area will prosper. When you start you prayer, it is at that checkpoint that they will stop the angel bringing your answer. Unless you apply violence, the angel will not pass through.
Another way to trouble your trouble is by destroying curses. Your mouth contains double barrel power. The words you speak can destroy or promote you. When a man who has a backing force speaks some words those words can cause trouble. The words you now speak, backed up by the force, can limit a life or explode a destiny.
WHAT IS A CURSE?
A curse is a set of words issued for destructive purposes. A curse is a commission given to satan to limit the life of a person. The enemy may decide to take 20 years out of the life of a person by issuing a curse. A curse is a force of retardation. So, if you dream of your primary school days , secondary school days or that somebody converted you to a housemaid or houseboy or slave, then you need to break the curse of retardation.
A curse is a tragedy that moves from generation to generation. You have to understand that. This is why we have a lot of educated illiterates around. Their chains of degrees cannot help them. Education is not an ability to nullify curses or the ability to defeat the forces limiting your life.
A family weakness can move from generation to generation. In some families, it is the curse of premature death. God said to Eli that no man in his family would enter his grave with grey hair. There are families like that. There are some families where their members never rise above a particular level. In Joshua 9:23 we see the curse that was put upon a whole tribe. It says, “Now therefore ye are cursed, and there shall none of you be freed from being bondmen, and hewers of wood and drawers of water for the house of my God.”
A family or a community can be in a position where it never produces a great person. There are communities where you cannot find any educated man. Therefore, a curse is a terrible thing. It has a backing force and what you can call an enforcing spirit. Physical relocation does not stop a curse. You need to know how to destroy it. And immediately you begin to do that, your trouble knows that it is in trouble. Escape by physical relocation is not the answer but spiritual relocation.
I know a brother who ran away to America and did not tell any member of his family. He settled down there, got married and had four children. He was not writing to anybody at home and nobody knew his whereabouts, and he was doing well. But one night, he had a dream where he saw a dog running after him until it caught up with him and started biting him. When he woke up he knew that there was trouble. The following morning, a letter arrived from Nigeria with the name of his junior brother at the back as the sender. His people did not know where he was for ten years but after he had the dream of the dog which dealt with him, the following morning, policemen came and showed him a form he filled about four years earlier. “Were you the one that filled this form?” they asked. And he was instantly deported to Nigeria. It was with the dress he had on that he arrived at the airport in Nigeria, leaving his wife, children and everything over there. He relocated physically but did not relocate spiritually and trouble followed. An invisible force may control or destroy somebody’s destiny, future and progress if the person is under a curse. When Elisha came out from where he received double portion of power, the people of Jericho rushed to him and said, “Sir, the foundation of this place is
pleasant but the water is bitter and the ground does not yield fruit.” Why did they go to Elisha? Because the anointing of God upon him could break that curse. Elijah did not break it before he left. The man who issued the curse was Joshua. When he got to Jericho, he said, "woe unto that man that will rebuild this city. When he is laying the foundation, his first son shall die and when he completes it, his last son shall die.” Four hundred years later, it happened just like that. Now they wanted the curse upon Jericho to be broken and Elisha broke it. I pray that every old curse that you are labouring under, shall be broken today, in Jesus’ name.
Perhaps you are like Peter who was fishing and catching nothing. You could be labouring under a curse. Something happened to Peter and I pray that the same thing should happen to you today, in Jesus’ name. What happened to Peter? The Lord entered his boat. The Lord shall enter my boat, in Jesus’ name.
The people of Jericho located their curse. Many of us need to locate the source of the thing happening to us. Many people are suffering from bad diseases that doctors cannot understand. In some families every first daughter would have a child without a husband and some none of the women settle down. For some, the women feed their husbands. Even if the man had a job before the marriage, he would lose it after.
These people chose Elisha because his anointing was comparable to that of Joshua. So, if a powerful native doctor puts a curse upon somebody, he or she would need a person with a higher anointing to break it. A certain man lost his five children and wife in one day. He went to a powerful herbalist for retaliation and the herbalist said, “Sorry, I have looked at this thing and I cannot do it. From what I can see, the only group of people who have the capacity to break this kind of thing and to retaliate are those of the church by the UNILAG gate. Go there.” The man came to see me and said, “Sir, a herbalist said I should come here.” So, the herbalist could see what many Christians cannot see.
I know a brother who had many degrees but no job. Everything was upside down for him. Some people took him to the highest gathering of witches in Nigeria where he tabled his problem. They looked at him and said, “It is your grandmother that is in charge of your problem. But, you see, whenever we have problem she is the person we contact. Therefore we cannot help you. Go somewhere else.”
Later he came to MFM and started praying and the Lord delivered him. You may have come from a family where no one is prospering, I prophesy to your life today that henceforth your case shall be different, in the name of Jesus. If you have come from a family where nobody has a lasting marriage, I prophesy unto your life that your case shall be different, in Jesus’ name.
Make the following declaration: My problems are in trouble, because God shall trouble them, in the name of Jesus.”
There are situations where you find people who have a lot of money but no peace. In some families some brothers threaten to kill another. In many situations, many people run in circles because forces of retrogression have set in. If you do your best and nobody appreciates you, it means that your heaven is becoming brass and you need to pray today.
Another way to trouble your trouble is to get rid of sin from your life. In anything you are doing, you must remember that God is the Lord of harvest. You cannot live in sin and expect prosperity. You cannot cheat people and prosper. An adulterous man who does not repent would one day impregnate a woman outside marriage and that child of adultery would move into the family and dismantle the structures he has put up. That child would be sent so that he harvests what he has sown into life. So, anybody who is living in sin is sowing evil and as he sows evil, he would reap evil. So, sin is terrible.
Some people have what can be called family sins. For example, Abraham told Abimelech that Sarah, his wife, was his sister. Forty years later, Isaac told the same Abimelech that his wife was his sister. Sixty years later, Jacob and his mother deceived their father. Eighty years later, Jacob’s children deceived him that Joseph was dead. Hundred years later, Judah slept with his daughter in-law who deceived him. So, you need to confess every personal and ancestral sins and get rid of them fast.
Dealing with evil dreams is another way to trouble your trouble. Any dream that you keep having and is setting you back, you should deal with it. All the dreams of climbing and never getting to the top, all the dreams of running around and getting nowhere, is a way of God trying to tell you that something wrong is going on. You need to wake up and start to fight.
God has a purpose for bringing this message to you. He has not brought it to waste your time. He has done so that your enemies will regret. He has done so that your problems can be chained and buried.
Close your eyes and begin to confess your sins. Tell the Lord to forgive your sins and to destroy anything that will strengthen evil angels at the checkpoint of darkness against you. Tell the Lord you want to pray and get results today.
1. O Lord, convert my disgrace to grace, in the name of Jesus.
2. O God, convert my disappointment to divine appointment, in the name of Jesus.
3. God, convert my weakness to strength, in the name of Jesus.
4. O God, convert my mess to divine message, in the name of Jesus.
5. O God, convert my frustration to fulfillment, in the name of Jesus.
6. O God, convert my ashes to beauty, in the name of Jesus.
7. My father, convert my pain to pleasure, in the name of Jesus.
8. My father, convert my lamentation to laughter, in the name of Jesus.
9. O God, convert my night to day, in the name of Jesus.
10. O God, arise and convert my problems to promotion, in the name of Jesus.
11. Every checkpoint of darkness, break, in the name of Jesus.
12. Every masquerade pursuing me from my father’s side, what are you waiting for? Die, in Jesus’ name.
13. Every masquerade pursing me from my mother’s side, what are you waiting for? Die, in Jesus’ name.
14. Inherited failure, die, in the name of Jesus.
15. (Lay your hands on your chest and pray:) Where no member of family has reached, O Lord, take me there by fire, in the name of Jesus.
16. O caldron of darkness hanging in the heavenlies, break, in the name of Jesus.
17. My trouble, you are in trouble by fire, in the name of Jesus.
Power to prosper
Deuteronomy 8:18:“But thou shall remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.”
In the foregoing, the Bible talks about power to prosper. It is a good thing to talk about prosperity and to preach about it. But the subject of prosperity must be balanced with the subject of holiness so that after we have prospered, we would not go to hell fire.
Psalm 84:11 says, “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.” Our God is clothed in glory and there is no reason why His children should wear rags; it does not make sense. Psalm 24:1 says, “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof: the world and they that dwell therein.” If God owns the earth and the fullness thereof, and I am His son, I must prosper. All the money in the world belongs to our heavenly Father. If you don’t have your own share of it now, perhaps somebody is keeping it for you, waiting for you to grow up before handing it over to you. But you will surely get it. The time has actually come for unbelievers to be removed from the positions of power, so that the gospel can prosper. Allowing them to be in control of the economy would certainly hinder the course of the gospel.
There are many people that have the keys of poverty in their hands and until they drop them, there is absolutely nothing God can do to help them. God has so designed His plans that He places first things first. A lot of people claim that Abraham’s blessings are theirs, the question is, will they allow God to run them through what He made Abraham to go through? Abraham first became a friend of God. He was righteous, he had faith and then God blessed him. Nowadays, people want to do it the other way round. They want money first. They want to be comfortable first before they serve the Lord. Unfortunately, it does not work that way. Anybody that cannot serve the Lord when he or she is poor will not be able to serve Him when he or she gets rich.
Let us look at the twenty keys of poverty. If you have these keys in your hands, you need to pray hard to drop them so that you do not labour in vain. Sometimes, what you think is a big problem is a small one. You must have sweated before discovering that it was just a simple thing you needed to drop for your life to be overflowing with blessings.
TWENTY KEYS OF POVERTY
1. Stinginess: Proverbs 11: 24 says, “There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty.” Stinginess leads to poverty. This is where God’s mathematics is different from our own mathematics. It is more logical to keep money, hoard it, or pile it up to become rich. But God’s law says that he that scatters increases, but he that withholds, gets poor.
A certain man was on a salary of Five hundred naira and was paying Fifty naira as tithe per month. After some time, God blessed him and he started earning Five thousand naira per month and as such, he had to pay Five hundred naira for tithe every month. This man went to the pastor and said he needed counselling. The pastor asked him why he needed counselling and he said that five hundred naira was too much for him to pay as tithe every month because he felt that it could buy so many things. The pastor said, “No problem sir, let me pray that God should return you to your former income so that you will be able to pay fifty naira which you can afford.”
A lot of Christians treat God as if He is an errand boy who they give tips. God is not also a beggar. He does not need your alms. If you are reading this message and you are still stingy, stop it because the Bible says that a stingy person is cursed. The key to receiving is giving. Anyone who does not give is like a Dead Sea. The problem of a Dead Sea is that it does not give out, it keeps everything inside and so, it stinks because it is not refreshed.
2. Loving sleep: Proverb 20: 13 says, “Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread.” If you want God to prosper you, and you still wake up every morning with the help of an alarm clock, something is wrong. Students who would love to excel above their colleagues will not love sleep. How can a Christian sleep for 12 hours a day? Such kind of believer needs deliverance from the key of sleep.
3. Loving vain persons: Proverbs 28:19 says, “He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread: but he that followeth after vain persons shall have poverty enough.” When a person is constantly found in the company of unserious people and those who don’t work hard, such a person would put himself into poverty.
4. Laziness: Many Christians are very lazy. Instead of them to pray for ideas that would fetch them money, they would fold their hands and keep saying, “O God, we are looking at your face.” Anybody who is spiritually lazy cannot get anywhere with God. If you are lazy physically, you will not get on well as well. The Christian journey is not a journey for the lazy ones.
5. Mocking the poor: Proverb 17: 5 says, “Whoso mocketh the poor reproacheth his Maker; and he that is glad at calamities shall not be unpunished.” People who are fond of making mockery of the poor and laughing them to scorn shall receive the wrath of God. Don’t say, “Me, I am not in your category. I am made of a better stuff. I wear only expensive clothes and not these cheap stuff that you people wear.” If you have you ever looked at somebody created by God and said things like, “I don’t mix up with riff raffs like you,” you have mocked the poor and reproached their Maker. You did not create them. You did not decide on your own whom was going to be your parents before you were born. They too had no choice. If children had choice of parents, you would not see twins at the middle of the market with their mothers begging for bread. Mocking them is reproaching God. Sisters who tell their husbands things like, “You are a useless man. You are not like that man over there that has just bought a new fridge. You are just wasting time, you are a useless man,” are mocking the poor and are reproaching his Maker who will not take it kindly with them.
6. Failure in tithes and offerings: Malachi 3: 8-10 says, “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” Failure in tithes and offerings is a strong key to poverty. When you give God your tithes and offerings, don’t sit down like a businessman who said, “O God, I have just paid ten thousand naira to you and that means that you have to give me hundred thousand back. God, do you understand?” In this case, you are doing business, you are not giving. It must be willingly and cheerfully given. Believers don’t borrow their tithes. If you borrow your tithe, you must pay twenty per cent on top by the time that you are bringing it back. Ten per cent is just the minimum that God wants you to bring to His house. It is different from the offerings, which you must give to God. Failure to do that would amount to God not opening you the windows of haven and pouring you out a blessing. Many believers are labouring under this curse without knowing. They always say, “I pray all the prayer points, I did all the things that should be done and yet nothing.” The question is, are you faithful in paying your tithe?
7. Not contributing to the Lord’s work: Haggai 1: 6-8 says, “You have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes. Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways. Go up to the mountain, and bring wood, and build the house; and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the Lord.”
Anytime there is something to be done in the church and pledges are taken, please don’t be left out even if it is only ten kobo that you can afford, Put something down for the Lord for He sees your heart provided you have done according to your ability. Not contributing to the Lord’s work is like watching your father’s business go down and you feel unconcerned about it. It is this attitude that makes foolish Christian leaders to print harvest pamphlets and envelopes and distribute them to lodge members because they want money. The harvest that Jesus was talking about was the harvest of souls, not the harvest of yam and plantain and bazaar, which is really fraudulent in the house of God. It is wrong to put down a tuber of yam that someone bought for ten naira and to start ringing bell for someone to buy it for more.
8. Giving to God in small measures: God measures your giving by the amount you have for yourself and not by the amount you give. Jesus said that that widow contributed more than everybody did because she put all that she had. It is a pleasure when God gives you something and you are able to give it back to Him. Luke 6: 38 says, “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.”
9. Engaging in the wrong business: Luke 5: 4 – 6 says, “Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing; nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake...” The man who has prosperity was there, and when Peter failed, he told him what to do. When Peter saw what Jesus did, he was astonished, and those who were with him. In verse 10, Jesus said unto Simon, “Fear not; from henceforth thou shall catch men.” This means that Peter was supposed to be catching men but he was busy catching fish and was not successful. Even when Jesus died, he went back to fishing and still did not catch anything- John 21: 3-6.
10. Not caring for ministers of God: Mathew 10: 41 says, “He that receiveth a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he that receiveth a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.” Ministers of God are not meant to be begging people for money. They are not supposed to be commercial ministers like it is these days. But the church of God is meant to look after its ministers.
11. Not giving to the poor: Proverbs 28: 27 says, “He that giveth unto the poor shall not lack: but he that hideth his eyes shall have many a curse.” Giving to the poor helps you to have abundance.
12. The curse of poverty: Galatians 3: 13-14 says, “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us; for it is written, cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree…” The curse of the law includes poverty, disease and death.
13. Ignorance: Hosea 4: 6 says, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…” Some believers are ignorant of God’s provisions for their lives. Some people who claim to be living by faith tell lies because they are living by begging. Ignorance concerning the keys of prosperity or keys to success would lead to poverty. Ignorance is the major cause of human failure in many endeavours.
14. Pride: Some people feel that they are too big to do some jobs whereas they have no job. They would say, “This is not the kind of job for university graduates. I cannot do it.” They then begin to walk about the street jobless. They always forget that God takes a little thing and then multiplies it. This is why rich illitrate men employ many university graduates today; yet they do not want to do the kind of jobs that those illiterate men did before they became rich. They feel that they are too big to begin business in a little dirty way. God will deliver all those who have the spirit of pride in them, in Jesus’ name.
15. Ostentatious living: Some people like showing off. As soon as they collect their salary, the people they brought things from would be waiting to collect their money. They want to look better than everybody does and so they keep paying debts.
16. Rigidity: When a person refuses to leave a closed business, he will suffer.
17. Discouragement: A lot of people give up so soon. Once they fail at first attempt, they give up. Some believe that they will fail even before they start; they have programmed their minds to failure. When the failure eventually comes, they will say, “I knew that it would not work.” The spirit of discouragement, the spirit of the loser and the spirit of the tail are all the same thing.
18. Lack of good counselling: A lot of people go into things without counselling and they do not ask for God’s direction. This leads to failure.
19. Engaging in secret sins: Sin hinders blessings. They stop God from working. As a believer, if you have some sins that you are committing secretly, you have the key of poverty in your hands.
20. Demonic activities: The major factors responsible for the poverty of black people in this environment are demonic activities.
God is a good Father who cares for His children and listens to them. He is always ready to hear us when we cry unto Him and satisfies our needs. He is not against us having money but does not want money to have us. You can have money as far as money does not have you, and does not get into your head. One man of God said that a man is rich by what he has left after all his money has been removed. Money can either be good or bad because a bad man’s money will do bad things and a good man’s money will do good things. A bad man will use his money for the kingdom of satan while a good man will use his money for the kingdom of God. If however you have money and you don’t control it in accordance to God’s will, it will control you and lead your soul to hell. Roman 12: 1 says, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world; but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind. That ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.” Your consecration to the Lord is the basic requirement for God’s blessings. Have you presented yourself holy to the Lord? Sacrifices have no power over the priest. We cannot sacrifice money to the Lord and His work if we ourselves are not sacrificed. Judas thought he was doing a good thing when he threw Jesus into the hands of those who would kill Him. He did not know what he was doing but the men who wanted Jesus knew what they were doing. He collected his thirty shekels of silver without knowing that he was fulfilling an evil prophecy. He thought that Jesus would overcome His captors by His mighty power. He was surprised to see Him following them like a sheep. The money became useless and he threw it back at those who gave it to him.
Luke 16: 13 says, “No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” In the foregoing, mammon is personified and treated as an idol. It is treated like another god. The Bible says that you cannot serve two masters. You cannot serve God and mammon. The word "cannot" means impossibility. You may work for two masters but you can serve only one.
Mammon is that demon power that controls money. It is the devil’s salesman. It is the power behind those who sell charms, witchcraft materials and do all kinds of things to make men sell their souls for money. Also, mammon spirit distribute spirits of poverty to attack human race particularly Christians. It is the demon that controls greediness, selfishness, poverty and financial bankruptcy. Many Christians have to defeat mammon in their lives. They have to bind the power and spirit of mammon. It is an evil spiritual power that grips men and enslaves them through money. It is the spirit that is working in the world and has made so many people to become slaves to money. We must deal this satanic force that enslaves men and women through money.
Your attitude towards money reveals your attitude towards God. If you are always ready to tell lies because of money, you cannot be a friend of God. So, your attitude towards money is very important if you want God to give you prosperity. The reason God sometimes does not give a person too much money is because He has seen some things in that person. He knows that giving such a person plenty of money would mean giving him a straight ticket to hellfire. No wonder Paul describes the love of money as the root of all evil. Whether you are poor or rich, it is either you are ruling money or money is ruling you. Poverty does not free one from the rulership of money. It will turn both poor and rich men to thieves. The love of money is what makes drivers of commercial vehicles to be involved in accidents most of the time. It makes people to drink terrible concoctions; it makes human beings to kill one another. Many will engage in the accumulation of money and forget their souls. Some will prefer to run their businesses on Sundays instead of coming to church. There are people who commit adultery in order to make money. The money of affliction and sin will lead to more problems.
Some people can die because of money. Some can spoil the lives of their children because of money. It is also the same reason many sisters marry the wrong men. They want good cars, expensive perfumes from Paris, expensive shirts and ties. Even when you ask them to go and pray, they will not regard it as important.
It is very bad to overestimate the power of money. Sometimes wealthy people are shocked to discover that there are things that money cannot purchase. And strangely too, poor people always imagine that once they have money, everything would be okay.
True riches are spiritual and it involves your being conformed to the image of God’s Son, Jesus Christ. You need to deliver your money from the world. You need to deliver your money from your ownself. If you are controlling your money or the world is controlling your money for you, it means that you have not submitted yourself to God. If you give God what you cannot feel, then you make Him a beggar. The best bank is in heaven. God cannot force you to part with your money. The money you are dying for had been in the world before you were born. When God says, give, He is just giving you a privilege, and so, don’t misuse that privilege. Don’t be like Solomon who spent thirteen years building his own house and seven years to build God’s house. Don’t be a slave to money with money. God loves a cheerful giver. What people call money carries a lot of heavy load. A dirty currency note represents both blood and toil. It is frightening because it can serve or destroy man. Only God knows the secret of how many hands the money you are holding has passed through. Only God knows the evil or the good the notes have done since the moment they were printed. The money will not speak so it will never tell you all that is hidden it. Many people would have died because of that note you are holding. Many might have killed themselves for it. Many might have fought to possess it for a few hours, or to use it for a little pleasure and joy. That money might have fed a baby; it might have provided food for a family or books for education. But at the same time, it might have sent a letter breaking an engagement. It might have been used for abortion fees. It might have bought alcohol to create a drunkard. It might have bought dirty films or might have been used to record an indecent song. It might have been used for good or bad. This is why we must always pray on our money. This is the secret behind the power of mammon to trap people.
Many Christians are holding too tight to the money that have passed through so many things instead of giving it back to God. You must understand that God does not want us to be poor. But the keys to poverty must be dropped. Understand that God gave you whatsoever you have now and you must give it back to Him. If you refuse to do that, He would look for people who will give it back to Him and bless them. Therefore, be wise.
1. O God, locate and revive my divine potentials, in the name of Jesus.
2. I break every curse of poverty, in the name of Jesus.
3. You spirit of poverty, be bound, in the name of Jesus.
4. I bind the spirit drinking the blood of my blessing, in Jesus’ name.
5. O Lord, create profitable opportunities for me, in the name of Jesus.
6. O God, if my job or business needs changing, change it for me, in Jesus’ name.
7. O God, reveal the secret of spiritual prosperity to me, in the name of Jesus.
8. All my stolen blessings, be returned to me, in the name of Jesus.
9. I refuse to inherit the spirit of poverty, in the name of Jesus.