Series on Deliverance Continued

May 18, 2012 · Print This Article

How The Ministry of Deliverance Is to Be Conveyed
from A Pastoral Manifesto on Deliverance, Part 3This teaching message contains elements of Practical Pastoring and may be most useful
in increasing your own understanding of the topic.


The Word

Text: Galatians 5:1, 13; 6:1-6


Deliverance has to do with breaking the bondage of habits and practices of the past. In this series, we are dealing with believers who are tormented or trapped by a yoke of bondage and don’t know how to deal with it.

These verses call us to liberty, and the liberty that we’re brought into, we can stand in. A believer can abide in the victory that the Lord gives, so you don’t need to spend your life wondering if the assault of hell means that every time you come under attack, you’re going to need deliverance. Most of the time you need to do spiritual warfare, and then you gain victory by the power of the life of the Lord in you, and stand in the liberty by which Christ has made us free.

Bondage to religious spirits

The Book of Galatians might rightly be called a “handbook on deliverance.” In Galatians, the deliverance was from legalism and entanglement of habits of the past. Bondage to religious spirits is not any different than bondage to spirits of addiction or involvement in the occult. Often when you encounter people who spout Scripture with a brazen hardness, breeding condemnation without any love, you may be dealing with a religious spirit.

Religious spirits gain hold in the hearts of people who themselves are in guilt and condemnation, and though they do love the Lord, they have never found a place of real peace in Him.

Guidelines for conveying the ministry of deliverance

  • Minister with sound-minded, scriptural teaching
  • Minister with sensitivity that doesn’t breed fear
  • Minister with humility
  • Minister with patience and love
  • Minister with authority

Minister with sound-minded, scriptural teaching

When the Bible directs us not to lay hands on people hastily (1 Timothy 5:22), it’s talking about responsibilities of spiritual leadership:

  • To not ordain or commission people to ministry too quickly.
  • To not be hasty about forming an affiliation or alliance
  • To not be too quick to tell someone that what they need is deliverance. This is the application we are dealing with here.

A person must want deliverance. Sometimes people will recognize bondage and say they want to be free, but the Holy Spirit in you will tell you, that they really just want ministry, not release. They want attention, love, or somebody to pray with them. Or what they want is a temporary reprieve from the problem as they are feeling it right now. They don’t really want to change.

Spirit or flesh? Oftentimes the way bondage is registered is because a person gives place through the exercise of disobedience in their own flesh. Deliverance does not bypass the need for discipline of the flesh. One of the great debates on the subject of deliverance is whether bondage is demonic or because of disobedience. Probably more bondage has to do with flesh than with spirit.

Minister with sensitivity that doesn’t breed fear

We are not to jump in without discernment (2 Timothy 1:7). Many people have been frightened away from the ministry of deliverance—which in fact they needed—because somebody began doing spiritual warfare without first explaining it and encouraging them to be receptive to what will be in their best interest. Deliverance should not be ministered by pressure or without explanation, but with sensitivity that doesn’t breed fear.

Sound-minded ministry will create an understanding in people and they will want to receive deliverance ministry. They shouldn’t be afraid of what’s going to happen as they are ministered to because of the way the ministry is conveyed.

We are to minister as servants. Sometimes what a person knows to minister is valid, what they want to minister is real, and what they discern needs to be ministered to is accurate. But the way it’s gone about is destructive, injurious and insensitive. Often it is prompted by an unperceived identity problem in the person ministering who needs to verify their strength, perception, dynamism and discernment. We’ve got authority over the devil, but the summons of the Holy Spirit for us is to come as a servant of Jesus. In the spirit of servanthood, we come to wash their feet, not throw the basin of water in their face.

Don’t convey the idea that a Christian is demon-possessed. Even if you perceive a person has spiritual torment of a demonic nature, you need to help them understand that you’re not talking about demon-possession. Don’t tell someone young in the Lord that they need deliverance from a demon or it will frighten them into condemnation.

Helping people understand the nature of this bondage can be communicated by the gentle analogy of dust on the furniture, rather than an infestation of evil, although there are times when that is the case. Most of the time, however, when you remove the dust, there comes the beauty of what was intended to be. Another sensitive and gracious way is to use the figure of a sunburn or a “hell-burn.” Just as you put soothing lotion on sunburn, the Holy Spirit anointing can take away and heal the pain.

Minister with humility

Minister with humility, recognizing the vulnerability of those who minister to self-deception, elitism or pride (Proverbs 16:18; Galatians 6:1-6).

One of the most powerful ways in which to minister is to speak from the context of having shared the kinds of struggles the person you are ministering to is struggling with, not from a chest-thumping superior position. Although Jesus never sinned, the Bible says that as the Great High Priest, He understands the bearing of our infirmities because He’s experienced so many of life’s struggles. We have a Lord Jesus who understands us, not by reason of having participated in sin but having confronted it so much. That same spirit needs to come through in the humility with which we minister to people.

There is a certain elitism that can so easily beset people. Because of the ministry of deliverance’s cutting edge into the frontal areas of the powers of darkness, the enemy would more like to lure those called to this ministry into pride or self-indulgence. A sense of pride removes the spirit of submission, and your identity becomes your ministry, rather than your identity being in Jesus.

Jesus is the One who gives us ministry. It is His power, His glory, His Person, not my knowledge of the Word of God that makes me an effective minister of His life. A brilliant mind can lecture the Word of God but when there is arrogance with the delivery, it is simply passing out information to prove how knowledgeable we are.

We are to speak the truth in love and see that love, in the Spirit, set people free. Rejoice in that, let your identity be Jesus, not the fact that you have this authority (Luke 10:20).

Minister with patience and love

Minister patiently and with love, not condescendingly or with an air of judgment that is born of discernment (Romans 12:3-16).

If a person in the Body is hurting, your discernment of their pain isn’t what they need. What they need is for you to stand beside them and love them on through to freedom. Just as you would be loving and supportive of a brother or sister in Christ who was physically in prison, so if a person is chained by something of the devil, there needs to be a gentleness in our hearts and a compassion toward them (Hebrews 13:3).

We’re not dealing as academicians on a truth; we’re dealing as people who are physicians. You don’t just make a diagnosis; you go in and love the person through and nurse them to the place of deliverance and victory.

Minister with authority

Minister with authority given by the Word of God, sustained in the spirit of worship and exaltation of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Within the realm of spiritual warfare, we’ve been endowed with authority, and that authority only works when it’s applied (2 Corinthians 10:3-5). Principalities and high things that boast themselves against God are not merely ideas. They are spawned in hell, advanced by the powers of darkness, and so the call is to enter into warfare and to draw on the resources given to us in Jesus’ Name.

Sustained in the spirit of worship in the exaltation of the Lord Jesus Christ (Philippians 2:8-11) is that through Jesus’ death on Calvary and the mightiness of His resurrection, God has given Him a Name that is above every name, and at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow. That authority has been given to us in Jesus’ Name—that every principality and work of darkness has been brought into submission to His kingdom, wherever that kingdom advances and enters in. Wherever it’s ministered. Wherever it’s applied.

But we are to minister it on the grounds of our having submitted to His authority, humbled ourselves, and walk in worship before Him. When you are in a deliverance situation where you need to declare dominion of the Lord, declare it on the grounds of His authority, not yours. There is a fairly widespread carelessness that comes on people who forget to start with worship and praise of Jesus before they take authority in His name.

Identify the situation for which you’re interceding, identify the nature of the spirits that you’re coming against in the invisible realm, the demon works of hell that need to be overthrown, strongholds that need to be cast down, and then when you get ready to pray, start with praise. Start with worship. Glorify the name of the Lord. Invoke His Name with worship. Living in that spirit of understanding whenever you’re given to do warfare will keep you walking in appropriate humility and sustain authority.

And anyway, it makes the devil mad when you praise Jesus.



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