One of our favorite preachers used 2 Chronicles 7:14 for text and content recently.
“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray, seek my face, turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
My reaction surprised me. “I don’t want to hear it!”
I spent a lot of time examining that verse months ago, and applying it. Most of my friends did humble, pray, seek, turn. I take God at His word, we are forgiven. However, two-years later our land is not healed. It is hard to detect any movement in that direction. In fact, it appears that corruption has expanded, and we are witnessing more of an unhealed land than at any time in this generation’s history.
I asked myself if I blamed God for that. No. I want to know what we did not do or did not obey adequately that kept God from doing the healing and renovation.
I’ve been reading about spiritual authority and pursuing “What you bind on earth will be bound in heaven; what you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” (Matthew 18:18). One translation uses the word, “What you prevent or prohibit on earth; what you permit on earth….”
Wow! Since Matthew puts it that way, we have a larger role in things than we thought.
During the night two days ago, the U.S. House of Reps passed a bill that would make abortion a Federal issue guaranteeing abortions until the birth moment. The most expansive abortion bill in history. Why? What motivates female political stars say, “We will fight for abortion!” They are unwilling to fight for traditional Constitutional Rights, why abortion?
The inscription on the Statue of Liberty says, in part,
“Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
We can add another line: “The land of abortion.” Land of the free to abort at will.”
Is that what neutralized God’s hand? The pagan world was doing what they do. 2 Chronicles 7:14 is about “My people.” When 26% of Christians vote, are we intentionally or by neglect permitting it? 2 Chronicles 7:14 is about God’s People—what should we have done to correct and change this—the one “right” that D.C. is willing to fight for?
I don’t have an answer, but the “permit” and “prohibit-prevent ”principle seems close. The Old Testament worship of Baal kept Israel in trouble with God. It included the offering of children as sacrifices to Baal and Molech. Has God gotten soft? If He would nuke Sodom, what gives Western Culture a pass?
One of the most important elements of the Spirit-filled walk is the Believer’s authority. From Luke 9:
“When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick” (9:1-2; see also Luke 10:1 & 17)).
In The Intercessors Handbook—How to Pray with Boldness, Authority & Supernatural Power, (Chosen Books, 2016) Jennifer Eivaz teaches,
“Spiritual authority was delegated first to the disciples and then to every believer in Christ. We have all authority in His name and the capacity to subdue anything that hinders His Kingdom from expanding. And while this is powerful truth, it is something we need to learn how to live” (page 50).
Ms. Eivaz lists where our authority is restricted and where it is empowered.
- Authority where we have overcome.
- Authority for tasks to which we are assigned or gifted.
- Authority to ask for more.
- Authority for serving spiritual leaders
I call your attention to number 2—”Authority for tasks to which we are assigned.” This includes territorial authority. When we minister as guests in a church, we are careful to work under the authority of the pastor. If we are invited, there is an implied delegated authority. There were times when that delegated authority was rescinded due to me overstepping or the resident minister disagreeing with our message.
One of the territory issues I figured out: If a nationally or internationally-known speaker says, “The church needs to—should…,” listeners know he or she is talking about the Universal Church. If I get lathered up and say, “The church needs to…,” listeners think I’m talking about their church. It is the only one they know about and probably the one they care most about.
Territorial authority is crucial because there are territorial dark spirits who will guard their control of the spiritual areas to which Satan appointed them or which they have clawed themselves into control.
Some men and women are given larger regions and given adequate anointing of authority for say, New Mexico or Omaha or influencers in the education sphere. Acting on that authority is foundationed by knowing the will of God. His kingdom and will are inseparable. Some assignments are too large for one person. Prophet Dutch Sheets has authority in the realm of government. He has associates and teams who participate and plan strategies based on what they hear from Holy Spirit. Lance Wallnau is another teacher to whom I pay attention. There are many others who have earned credibility. We drove past a church today once pastored by Tommy Barnette who has authority and favor for leading people to Christ in vast numbers.
The Kenneth Copeland ministries has felt authorized to pray against Covid-19. I think there is a disease & pandemic named Covid and there is a spirit named Covid. Brother Copeland is a spiritual frontiersman—occasionally, he gets “way out there.” There is a hit piece in the papers this morning about him asking for money to buy an airplane. He has airplanes and was a commercial pilot before he was called to ministry. One or more of those planes was used to fly 5000-10,000 refugees out of Afghanistan. I read and hear Christians and secularists making fun of Copeland. That is not a wise behavior! He is not equipped to fight the disease named Covid that is not his “territory.” He is praying against the spirit of Covid. This pandemic has been from the beginning or has become a spiritual battle. What “principality, power, wicked spirits in heavenly places” are leading the spread and damage and collateral damage? Taking orders from? For what purpose?
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against a spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).
I’m wondering who has Kingdom spiritual authority, therefore, responsibility over the USA Southern Border. What about Afghanistan? Minneapolis? Washington, D.C.?
Authority is not just a national, region, international imperative. Each person, family, home has sovereign rights which you are viewed as a trespasser without authority. Honoring personal boundaries is the right thing. A spouse can give the authorization to minister to a mate. Most of the people I hear testifying about witnessing to a stranger speak of receiving a question or asking if they have permission. Being careful not to intrude or invade, we can expect Holy Spirit to open an on-ramp to those whom we are to tell about Jesus.
Nations have sovereignty which comes under question when widows, orphans, strangers, pilgrims are abused or harassed. I’m not talking about westernizing or colonizing, but proclaiming the Kingdom Gospel–telling and showing God’s love and desire that people live in freedom.
Kingdom authority neglected may be the reason our land has not been healed. Although I have asked, Holy Spirit has me on a need-to-know basis. At least to this moment. He certainly has alerted me to the regions and areas I do have authority.
A few of the resources that have influenced me:
I Give You Authority, Charles H. Kraft (Chosen Books, 1997).
The Intercessors Handbook, Jennifer Eivaz (Chosen Books, 2016).
Power Evangelism, John Wimber & Kevin Springer, (Regal Books, 2009).
The Purpose and Power of AUTHORITY, Dr. Myles Munroe, (Whitaker House, 2011).
©2021 D. Dean Benton