If you haven’t listened already, go and listen to the message on “Steps to Sin and Steps to Freedom.” By listening, you may gain a better understanding of how Satan tempts us - where the temptation comes from and how sin is conceived in our lives.
While we didn’t break down this verse in class, I wanted to give you a short breakdown of
2 Corinthians 10:3-6. I encourage you to read it for yourselves this week:
"For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled." (2 Corinthians 10:3-6, KJV)
-We Walk in the Flesh, But Our Battle is Invisible
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh
This verse says that though we walk in the flesh - in the physical realm - our problem isn’t physical. It's invisible. Something we can't see.
As we discussed in class, the problem isn't with you or even your neighbor - it's something else its from another kindgom, and that Kindgoms leader is Satan. Sin is a kingdom and it consists of beings that DESIRE you, so that they can act out their nature through you. Weather that be fear, anxiety, anger, bitterness, rejection, lust, and more.
-Our Weapons Aren't Physical
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal,
The weapons we need aren’t physical. They would be useless to fight an invisible battle with physical means. "Carnal" means fleshly, so having it out with your neighbor, spouse, or that driver who flipped you off will literally produce nothing.
First, you're using the wrong weapons. Second, you're pointing the weapons you do have at the wrong person. The battle isn't against other people. It's not even against yourself as we addressed above its against a Kingdom of sinful beings who want to act their nature out through you.
Eph. 6.  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
-God's Word Tears Down Strongholds
but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;
Our weapons come through God. As Ephesians 6 notes, the only offensive weapon mentioned is the sword of the Spirit, which is God’s Word. We need to know His Word to effectively counter every lie the enemy uses to tempt us.
A stronghold is a mighty fortress with walls and protections - it seems impossible to tear down. But the Word of God is strong enough to dismantle even the biggest strongholds the enemy tries building within us.
-Casting Down Imaginations
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God,
As we learned, the second step toward sin is being drawn away by our imaginations. This is when we must STOP the imagination by CASTING it DOWN.
When an imagination plays out in our heads, it’s often due to a being exalting itself above God and His Word. This being that is in a HIGH PLACE (Eph 6:12) claims that what it says is bigger and higher than God's truth.
For example, you may have a thought like "I'm horrible, ugly, and unworthy." This isn't your thought its coming from another kingdom but then imaginations and memories then play out in your mind to reinforce this lie. If you don't recognize, STOP it here and CAST IT DOWN, you'll slide further down the path toward actually agreeing with and acting on the lie which is then becoming one with this sin being.
This is the sin of self-hatred, self-rejection, self-guilt. It violates the commandment to love your neighbor as yourself, because you can't properly love others if you fail to love yourself as God designed you.
So when the enemy tempts you this way, STOP the imagination and use the SWORD of God's Word, which says:
I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalms 139)
I am created Good. (Genesis 1:31)
What He made was GOOD (Genesis 1:31)
If you fail to do this, the enemy gains a foothold in your life. This is how autoimmune diseases and other problems often take root. Autoimmune is the body attacks itself.
-Taking Every Thought Captive
and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
This is what it means to take thoughts captive and make them obedient to Christ - we force them to align with the Word of God. It's the same process Jesus modeled when fending off Satan's lies in the wilderness.
-Be Ready for More Temptations
And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled
Once you've obeyed the Lord in defeating a lie, don’t stop there. Expect more temptations to disobey to come but be ready to revenge the disobedience that tries to take hold. As you become an overcomer, you’ll also be equipped to help others defeat the disobedient kingdom of sin.
This week I hope you start if you haven't already, to take an inventory of your thoughts and interrogate them if they line up with the word of God or not.
Using the steps to freedom can help us be free from thoughts of sin we have already came into agreement with in our life and then RESISTING by using the verse above.
Your are more than a conqueror in Christ Jesus. Don't forget the (IN CHRIST) part. We can't do it on our own. We need him and his word. We don't have to be perfect we just have to take a step forward!
Listen to Week 2 Below. Steps to Sin & Steps to Freedom