The Battle for Worship
April 11, 2009
A battle front that is raging in the church today is that of worship. The adversary knows that we have crossed the River Jordan with new beginnings in 2008 and we have come to another spiritual level. With every new level there is an anointing for a new assignment. When Israel crossed Jordan, the Lord gave to Joshua the assignment to take the Promise Land. They went from being an unorganized mob wandering around in the wilderness to that of a well-disciplined army commissioned to tear down strongholds of the enemy and to build up the waste places and inhabit them for the glory of God.
God has once again given the assignment to tear down strongholds and build up the waste places and He will do this through His people. One of the main ways that the Lord will do this is through anointed worship. We must understand that the old way of doing things in the wilderness will not work in the Promise Land, which includes worship. What may have worked a year ago that the Lord used to sustain His people in the wilderness, will not work in the Promise Land. Those who try to do so will only become frustrated and confused.
There is a militant sound of heaven being released with the call to “Come Ride with Me.” Those who answer the call are being issued new weapons of warfare from the arsenal of heaven. Some of these weapons will be released through worship. This means a change up in the way we have done worship. A transition is now taking place to change from the old for that which is new. The army of God consists of worshipping warriors and they will not respond to the same worship in the same way that those who camped in the wilderness did!
In order to make this transition, we must hear from heaven and respond appropriately. In the wilderness, the people were not called to take ground or empowered to cast down strongholds. This has now changed. The church is now being empowered with a new type of worship that will enable them to go from a defense position to that of offense. One of the changes that I see taking place is extravagant worship that empowers the people to rise up with “happy feet” to dance before the Lord as David did.
A prophetic word came to us recently that within one year; we would see worship that is entirely different than that which we know today. Even that which we perceive in our present concept of worship will be different. As a leader, what this means to me is change. Change is good because it is the process ordained by God that takes us from glory to glory.
In order to fulfill the call on our lives, there is always a prophetic process involved. Between Egypt and the Promise Land lies a wilderness that we journey through, a season of transition. Prophecy is the encouragement we receive for something that we can obtain in Christ. This requires a proper response from the heart before God will reveal it to our minds. Then as we say yes Lord, He will give to us the divine strategies and understanding that we need. Change always requires faith. It is our desire to be a host to implement change in order to bring about His purpose.
The Wiles of the Adversary
Our adversary knows that God is preparing for a great advance. If is for this reason, that the adversary is trying to preempt a move of God by attacking God’s worshippers before they can enter into the new realm of worship. We must understand that all Christians are worshippers. One of the manifestations of an attack is that of a feeling of heaviness that affects our outlook and perception on life. During these uncertain times when the world is under siege due to economical, political and the threat of terrorism, many are coming under the weight of heaviness, which is oppression. The word “oppression” means to be weighted down, to come under. We are not called to come under anything, but to walk in victory with Christ our king.
The root of this type of oppression often stems from feelings of despair and discouragement, inadequacy, uncertainty and anxiety and unhealed issues. It can also be rooted in unforgiveness and bitterness. If not healed, these symptoms will affect our attitude and outlook on life and yes, our worship. Thus, our position in life is greatly affected by our outlook on life. Our position will affect our situation.
Because God has created us in His image and likeness, we have the power to affect the atmosphere around us, either with God’s light that brings life or to usher in darkness because of our dim view of life. The view we take is determined by our perspective. We are called to see through the eyes of the Spirit where Christ sits at the right hand of the Father. Our stand is from our victorious position in Christ. It is from this victorious position in Christ that our lives are filled with faith, hope, and joy that enables us to impact the lives of others for Christ.
We are not called to be overcome by our adversary, but to prevail over our adversary. The enemy has to surrender his territory to us, not the other way around! I believe the Church is about to come into the joy of the Lord through a ministry of worship that will be so glorious, that it will infuse a new found strength, power and light to the Church. In the midst of darkness, God will raise up a remnant that will shine with the radiant glory of God. This is the tabernacle of David that God is restoring as recorded in Acts 15:16 – a habitation for the Spirit of God.
The Battle Front
Our main battle is not against our adversary, pastor, friends, spouse or neighbor, but that which takes place in our own hearts. There is nothing that has power over you except that which you come into agreement with. Our battle is to press daily into the presence of God. This is why Paul tells us to “Submit to God and resist the devil and he will flee” (James 4:7) Many people are caught up in a raging battle with demonic forces in their attempt to resist the devil by quoting scriptures and commanding him to flee. I suggest however that you try this as well – simply focus your heart on the Lord and enter into worship. The key to victory is to abide in God’s presence which causes Satan to flee. This is because he cannot stand the glory of God. Satan was cast out of heaven. When you praise the Lord you are entering into heavenly places where he cannot go. Everything that keeps you from worshipping God to rest in His presence where there is peace and joy is your battle front.
As David declared in Psalms 100, we enter into His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Giving thanks is the language of faith that enables us to enter heaven and praise brings us before the King! Thanksgiving and praise is the language that ushers us into God’s presence. It is here that we obtain the fullness of joy for the Kingdom of God is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. He is our daily bread. If we want to be feed daily, make worship a lifestyle. Learn to worship until you become worship. Then you will become a lamp of God for God inhabits the praises of His people. From the time we rise in the morning till the going down of the Sun, God is worthy to be praised. Those who have learned this key are the happiest people on planet earth.
How do you know if the adversary is coming against worship in your life or church? Are you and the people dancing before the Lord with joy and thanksgiving? Is the worship team full of joy with upbeat praise? Or is everyone passive and sober, seeking God for a blessing because inwardly they are hurting? Is the worship service lively because of the spiritual freedom, or is the atmosphere heavy? Those who are leading worship are often those who come under the heaviest attack and thus need a shield of prayer. Because of this, in order to lift up the congregation into Christ, they must minister from a victorious place in Christ. The scriptures give us the antidote for the spirit of heaviness, which is to put on a garment of praise. (Is. 61:3).
The main way that we take territory and hold it, is by living a life of worship and praise, thanking God for all things despite all things. The same worship that the adversary attacks is our key to victory and our success! No matter how you feel or what is taking place in your life, praise the Lord with thanksgiving and soon your will rise above your situation. The key that the Lord gave me to prevail over severe trials is that of extravagant worship. As I dance before the Lord rejoicing for who He is declaring what He has done, the Lord fills me with the Spirit of victory. Everything that bogs me down leaves and in its place are faith, hope, and love.
It is through extravagant worship that I discovered God’s joy for in His presence there is fullness of joy. When we forget about ourselves, our needs and problems, and we abandon ourselves to worship God, we move the heart of God who touches us with His life. Extravagant worship releases a “breakers” anointing that opens the portal of heaven. It is worship to upbeat music that breaks the yoke of bondage and sets the captives free. We are living in a sober time that calls for joyful extravagant worship.
America needs a stimulus package and worship is the key to infusing the spiritual economy with the life of God. Without this breakers anointing that brings people into the joy of the Lord, which is our strength, the church will not prevail because of a lack of strength. People need the joy of the Lord. Worshipping God with dancing hearts brings us into a place of victory that is a deadly weapon to the enemy. Every Christian must use it daily in order to prevail in these times. This type of worship opens prison doors and sets the captives free.
In His presence, there is nothing but light and His wondrous love. The ministry of personal and corporate praise with dancing hearts breaks opens the heavens. When Christ is high and lifted up as you dance before the Lord, you displace all of the demonic forces as you tread them under your feet because Christ is Lord of Lords and King of Kings.
In His heart and love