Jentezen Franklin - How To Walk In Victory
I want to talk to you about how to walk in victory, and I want to give you specifically three steps. How do you walk it out? How do you live it out? Sincere Christians have fallen to, fallen prey to the seductions of Satan. We've all seen it. It's happened in all of our lives, in one way or another. More and more, people seem to be losing control of their lives, enslaved with habits, God's people, that are robbing them of joy, robbing them of peace, robbing them of the anointing. They need healing of fear, healing of resentment and anger.
I heard Bob Gass make this statement 20 years ago, and it transformed my life. It showed me a secret to walking in victory when he said this statement. He said, "You're only as sick as the secrets you keep". The moment that you reach into the darkness and stop hiding your issues and you pull them out into the light and expose them to the light of God's word and God's truth, healing begins. How do you walk in victory? I want to give you a single strategy that God gave me 18 years ago. And it's just three simple points. And I've been reminding myself of it.
1. You have to discern.
2. You have to decide.
3. You have to declare.
What do you discern? What is that about? You have to get 20/20 vision in the spirit. You have to discern where the real battleground is. The Bible said in Ephesians 6 that "we wrestle not against flesh and blood", and you can have the greatest weapons in the world, but if you don't know where to aim 'em, they don't do you any good. And many times, we are dealing with relationships and people when we need to have discernment and 20/20 vision in the spirit to understand that when you bring a person into your life, you not only bring the person, but you bring the spirit that the person has with them.
If it's negative, you get it. If it's critical, you get it. If it's angry and bitter, they don't just bring their physical presence. They bring their, the spirit of that person. And sometimes, we need to have discernment to not wrestle with flesh and blood and argue with people, but bind the spirit of contention, the spirit of anger, the spirit of fear, the spirit of depression that can overcome your life.
Let me give you an example. You know there's normal fear, healthy fear. The fear of a poisonous snake is healthy. But then there is unhealthy fear. It's fear levels that reach such a proportion in your life that fear begins to dominate and control your thoughts. You become paralyzed with fear. You become tormented with fear. "Something's going to happen to my children. Something's going to happen that's bad. I'm going to get breast cancer just like my mother did". Or maybe it's some fear, some tormenting fear. I'm going to die. This or that. And that is not just normal fear. There is a spirit behind that fear, and you have to have 20/20 discernment.
Well, I'll tell you what the Lord told me to tell you to focus your eyes on if you feel overwhelmed. He said, "Number one, here's what you've got going for you. They that be with us are more than they that be with them". Well, what do I have going for me? Number one, you have going for you the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit helps our infirmities, our weaknesses, our inadequacies. The Holy Spirit guides us. Did you hear what I just said? He guides us into the truth. He guides us down the path we need to go. He produces the fruits of the Spirit, love, patience, joy, kindness.
If you don't have 'em, the Holy Spirit can produce 'em. He produces the gifts. If you need a miracle, He's got the gift of miracles. If you need a prophecy, He's got the gift of prophecy. He produces the gifts and the fruits, and the Holy Spirit is what you need to focus on. You need to focus, secondly, what do you have going for you? What do you need to see? See the word of God, the power of the word of God. The Bible said we're cleansed by the word. We're cleansed by it.
John wrote and he said "these writings I give unto you that your joy may be full". And then He said, "I sent My word and healed them". Listen to the three things the word gives, cleansing, joy, healing; cleansing, joy, healing. It's working for you. If you'll work the word, the word will work for you. You've got the Holy Spirit on your side. You've got the word of God on your side. The Lord told me to tell you, number three, you've got the angels of God fighting for you. Just like Elisha, they're surrounding your enemy. The Bible said the angels do always obey the word of God, and whether God speaks it or you speak it in His name, the angels stand at attention at anyone who speaks the word of God over their circumstances.
The Bible said in Psalms 91 that the angels of the Lord encamp round about them that fear God. If all you do is look at the natural, you're going to be discouraged. But I'm telling you, on the authority of God's word, there are unseen forces that are on this platform and all out there, and the battles that are raging in your life, you're not fighting alone. There's One called the Holy Spirit who's coming up under you this morning. There's One called the word of God and He says, "I can cleanse, I can heal, and I can bring joy where there is no joy".
And there's angels that are going to fight, there's angels that are surrounding your children, there's angels that are surrounding your grandchildren off at college and all kinds of environments, the angels of the Lord. Hebrews 11 said they are sent to minister unto us, to serve us, so you can authorize angels into action through the name of Jesus and speaking the word of God. I want to tell you something else you've got going for you. You've got to discern that you have the blood of Jesus working for you right now. The blood of Jesus does two things. It cleanses and it protects. The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all unrighteousness when we apply it. And secondly, it protects.
You see, Job, the Bible said, put blood on the altar through ten animals every day. He put blood on the altar. And even Satan had to admit, "I cannot touch his family, I cannot touch his wealth, I cannot touch his health, for You, God, have a hedge around him". What kind of hedge? It was a blood hedge. Notice that when Satan attacked Job, when he was given permission by God to attack Job, he did not take his health first. He did not attack his children first. He did not attack his wealth first. What did Satan attack first? Read the Bible. He attacked his animals and he stole all of his animals. He had no oxen, he had no sheep, he had no animals.
Why was that important and significant? He had no blood to put on the altar. When the blood is not applied, the hedge comes down. When the hedge comes down, then the enemy attacks the family and attacks the health and attacks everything. But there is protection through the blood hedge. We are not under the blood protection of a goat or an ox. We are under the blood protection of the Lord Jesus Christ. The blood of God is fighting for you. No wonder Revelation 12 said, "We overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony".
You know what else you have fighting for you? You know what else you need to see? The power that is in the name of Jesus. There's still power in the name of Jesus. When we speak that name, demons back up. When we speak that name, demons tremble. There's power enough in that name that at the name of Jesus, every knee must bow and every tongue must confess Jesus is Lord. The Muslim's going to bow and confess Jesus is Lord. The Buddhist is going to bow. The atheist is going to bow his proud knee and he's going to confess Jesus is Lord. And that power of that name is operating and fighting against your enemy today. You have the power of prayer. Focus on prayer.
Do you know that you can travel anywhere on the earth right now, prayer has no geographical boundaries. Through prayer, I can go into a hospital right now. Through prayer, I can go into an intensive care unit. Through prayer, I can go into a prison. Through prayer, I can go into a crack house. Even if your kids won't come to church, even if they're shacking up with somebody, living with somebody they're not married with, you can pray right here and grace can go find 'em in that bed. Grace can begin to turn and touch and prick and convict. Oh, the power of prayer. If any two of you will agree and touch, anything shall be done that you touch and agree on. One can put a thousand to flight, two then thousand.
There's power in prayer. That's why marriage is supposed to be a union, a prayer. When you pray together, there's power seven times stronger. Your husband is seven times stronger when you stand with him. Your wife is seven times stronger than they are when they're praying by themselves because there's covenant power in agreement, and agreement always causes Satan to tremble in fear. What are you focusing on this morning? Your weakness or His strength, your empty barrel or His unlimited resources? What are you focusing on, the doctor's report or the Great Physician's promise? "I am the Lord that heals you".
Cancer doesn't make God shake. Heart disease doesn't make God afraid. He's Lord of all. Focus on what can change things. God can change things, and He can cause you to overcome. Discern where the real battle is. What I'm telling you today is the greatest battle that will happen is in your mind. I want to play with words, but up here is a minefield. And people say, "Well, you Christians, you're just brainwashed". And I want to say, "Amen", to that. Every time I come to church, I get my brain washed. I get the negative stuff out. I get the bitterness out. I get the hatred out. I get all of that.
There's something about just getting in God's presence, and I get the fear out and I get the hopelessness out, and I get faith in and I get joy in. Yes, I'm brainwashed. Welcome to church. We get our minds renewed and we get our brains washed and we get back up and say, "I can take on the world", because they that be with me are more than they that be with them. Take a praise break just a minute. Guard your mind, folks. Guard your thoughts. Your thoughts will poison or produce. Your thoughts will paralyze or empower. So you have to take control of that stronghold.
And some of you are held captive by a thought - you're not good enough, you've committed the unpardonable sin. But today, the Lord has sent you to this church. Wherever you are, you're listening to me by divine appointment today. "This'll never change and it'll never get better". Yes, it will, through the power of God's word. You have to discern that they that be with us are more than they that be with them. And then, secondly, you have to decide enough is enough. You have to reach the place that you say, "Something's got to give". Nothing happens 'til you decide. And usually, until our pain level exceeds our comfort level, we leave things alone. But the reason that pain keeps coming back in any area of your life, it's God saying, "That pain is not there just to be there".
Pain is not your enemy. Pain is your servant. And pain is telling you that there's a problem here and you need to get it fixed. You need to drag it out of the dark and you need to deal with this and you have to decide enough is enough. I'm not going to hide anymore. I'm not going to pretend anymore. I've got to get real with God. I've got to get real in this situation. God, I'm coming before You broken. I'm coming before You empty. I'm coming before You today, doing everything I know to do. I'm so sick of fake church and little plastic Christians that just act like everything's wonderful, "How are you", and they can be going through hell but they can't tell anybody because, you know, we've got to be too perfect. But sometimes you have to decide enough is enough. I can't go on anymore. Something's got to give. It's time for a new direction. It's time to say, "That's it".
Turn to somebody and say, "That's it". Passivity is a spirit and it'll kill you. It'll kill your relationships. It'll kill your home. It'll kill your marriage. If we just sit back and do nothing, it'll kill you. So at some point, you discern this is a spiritual battle going on here, for my family, for my home, for my relationship with my children or my mate or whatever it is. And then you decide, "I've had enough. I've got to do whatever I've got to do to get help". Something's got to change.
Psalms 27 said, "One thing have I desired from the Lord, and that will I seek after". So this can be another service where you sit through and nod and go right back or all of us could get broken before God and say, "Lord, here's the mess. Help". And He'll come running. He's looking for brokenness. And I want to tell somebody who's listening to me, this is the word of the Lord. I tremble. I'm trembling in my spirit right now because I know that this is a message that God said, "They must hear today". And the Lord told me to tell you that Satan will always attack on the brink of multiplication.
When the enemy comes in like a flood, it's always right before the brink of multiplication for something major is about to break loose. Adam never had the devil bother him when he was by himself. There was no threat of multiplication. But as soon as he had Eve and there was multiplication potential, Satan came, because the enemy always attacks on the brink of multiplication. And that's why you can't quit and you can't give up. You have to discern this is a battle, it's real, it's demonic, "and I have decided that I'm not going to ignore it and be passive, but I won't let go until you bless me".
You know, I got so passionate about it in the first service this morning, I brought out my old song that I'm still expecting to win a Grammy. It's called "Hold On", and I feel like singing it. Here it goes. It's powerful. If you've never heard it... We've always got new people, hundreds of new people. Here's a song I wrote and it's going to hit any day now. You're on the brink of multiplication. Don't quit now. Everything you've been fighting for, there's a blessing on the other side of the battle. Hold on, child of God. You will reap if you faint not. Shout, "Don't quit now". Hallelujah.
Lastly, you've got to declare the word of God over your circumstances. You've got to discern where the real battleground is. You've got to decide something's going to change. And you've got to declare the word of God. "Well, I'm just not into that kind of stuff". Then you're going to be beat up. Now, what you're saying when you begin to declare the word of God over your circumstances, what you're saying may be contradicted by what you're seeing. Are you going to say what your friends think or what your faith declares?
Faith and reason are not opposed, but when reason can't take another step, faith keeps right on walking. The reason is reason takes the hand of man and goes as far as man can take it. But faith takes the hand of an infinite God and He takes you where only He can take you, into miracle territory where the impossible is possible. And you've gotta declare the word of God over your circumstances.
Now, listen to me carefully. If things are going to change, you've got to change three things. You've got to change your environment. You've got to change your company. Wow. I just said a lot right: Change your environment; what are you listening to, what are you looking at, negativism, murmuring, complaining. Change your environment. Change your company.
Well, what does that mean? The Bible said, "Iron sharpens iron". You know, let me put it this way. If you're broke all the time, and all your friends are broke and don't have any money, it's not that they're bad people and you're bad people, but you can't hang around just the same people who are on the same level in that area of your life and hope to go higher, because you only change by the places you go and the people you get around.
Now, wait a minute. Listen. So if you're broke and all your friends are broke, you're never going to get out of that, and here's why. One of the wisest things you could do is find you somebody who knows how to handle wealth and take them out to lunch, on you, "Well, they've got money. I just thought you'd pay". No. No. No. If you're going to have a mentor, your gift makes room for you. Listen. Lastly, change what you say. Change what you say. What are you saying? Are you speaking death or life?
Now, listen. Bob Gass said this 20 years ago, and it changed my life. I'd never heard much of, this was just when the kind of confession message was coming out. And he made this statement; he said, "A thought unspoken is a thought unborn". And when you speak it, you give birth to it. Are you speaking life to your children? Are you speaking life to your wife? Are you speaking life to your husband? Are you speaking life to your marriage? Are you speaking life to your business? A thought unspoken is a thought unborn. What are you saying?
You must declare the word of God over your addictions, over your fears, over your worries, over your bondages, over your problems in your relationships. Declare the word of God. And when you speak it, it is born; and when you keep speaking it, it grows up. Say it.
Ephesians 3:20, let's say it. Let's close by saying it. Everybody, say it big and bold. "Now unto Him that is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that I could ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us". Deuteronomy 31:6, everybody, "Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee. He will not fail thee, nor forsake thee". Next verse, "And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed".