While the Word of God describes an incredible and powerful Governing Congregation, what the Bible calls the Ecclesia, the image that rises is far from what we see in the world today. It is far from what we see in The Netherlands these days. In these days there are barely congregations that are functioning as the Ecclesia. The main reasons for that are a lack of knowledge and a lack of testing everything.
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.
Test all things; hold fast what is good.
1 Thessalonians 5:21
Now some may wonder what all of this has to do with divination or witchcraft. One of the most familiar Bible verses that talks about witchcraft is found in 1 Samuel.
For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king.
1 Samuel 15:23
At this point you can already start to see the connection here. Destruction for lack of knowledge always comes from rejecting the Word of the Lord. Why? Because His Word is available to us. So we have two choices: to accept or to reject. Accepting the Word of God means that you do not only hear it. You apply the keys Jesus handed in Matthew 7:7.
Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.
When we read the Word of God, all we have is knowledge. And there are lots of people with knowledge of the Word, but only few with the insight and wisdom that are needed to apply it. Insight and wisdom are not just handed to you. As Jesus said, you have to ask, you have to seek and you have to knock. Only then these things will be added to you. We have to set our hearts on not just knowing the Word, but understanding it from God’s point of view. This can simply be done by asking God what He wants to say, followed by searching the Word for answers to that question. The knocking part means you don’t give up until you have what you asked for. Once you have the insight, you need the wisdom on when to use it and when not to use it. When to speak the Word and when to be silent.
A head full of knowledge gives you all the handles to exercise religion. But it takes the grace of God, through revelation, insight and wisdom, to transcend above that, to a level of intimate relationship with our Creator. In fact, it is pure pride to think you understand the Word of God, without having any form of revelation from above. Without revelation, you don’t understand a thing. With just knowledge, you know nothing. We need to realized that we need His help every step of the way, including in gathering knowledge, insight and wisdom.
For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.
When we want to learn and when we want to grow to higher spiritual levels, which are available to every Christian, we need to start with an attitude of humility. We need to start realizing that we know nothing. And the more you actually learn, the more revelations you receive, the more insights and wisdom is added to you, the more you realize that we actually know nothing. We just often think we know it all, but nothing can be farther from the truth. Approaching God with a humble attitude, realizing we know nothing without Him revealing it to us, that is what God calls a teachable spirit. Only from that position we will start to grow to higher levels. The next step is applying what we have learned. But how can we apply what we don’t know? Yet we are responsible, because we could have known if we would have had the right attitude. And that is what God means by “Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king.”
Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.
Make no mistake, God is not taking this lightly. He will not make you beg. He will never be unreasonable to you. But He does want you to do something for it. Like Jesus said, you need to ask, search and knock. With the commission He also gave the promise that when you do that, He will hear from heaven and give you, He will let you find and He will open the door for you. That sounds like a great deal to me! But unfortunately, many leaders these days rather trust on their own knowledge and insights, on their theological training or Bible schools only. And although I strongly support dedication to studying the Word of God, a school or training can never give you the revelations, insights or wisdom God wants you to have and that you need to have in order to grow. A school or training can only go as far as pointing you in the right direction. But you have to go there. You have to ask, search and knock.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and depart from evil. It will be health to your flesh, and strength to your bones.
Trusting only in your training or school, or on your own understanding, is not what God asks from us and is rejecting the Word. It is considered as rebellion and stubbornness. According to 1 Samuel 15:23, that makes us guilty of witchcraft, idolatry and iniquity. That is a big deal and is to be taken seriously. Basically it is you taking over control. Instead of being depended on what He speaks, you then choose to rather trust in yourself. But it doesn’t end there.
Once we’ve taken the path of trusting in our own understanding, that creates a legal ground for the spirit of witchcraft. This spiritual force will not only keep you in your own deception, it will also start to use you to control others by any means necessary. The most common fruits of this spirit are intimidation and manipulation. But whatever tool is used, it has always the aim to control your thoughts and actions. To make you do what they want. A few examples of intimidation and manipulation at work:
- Threatening that if you don’t do what they say, then (negative result)
- Using a word of “knowledge” to make someone do something they want
- Forcing people to do something they do not want to do
- The only ones who are “anointed” are the leaders, you are nothing
- There’s no need to test anything, the leaders are always right
- Any form or demand to make people submissive and dependent (on other people)
- Any form or demand that uses guilt or the threat of rejection
- Trying to influence people to give money
- Abusing scriptures to make them give more
These are just a few of many examples, but you get the picture. It all comes down to controlling others by imposing one’s will upon them, regardless of the tools used. Many have fallen for it. Fallen for all the beautiful and religious words that sounded so near to the truth. It is the sort of leadership that demands sacrifice. Your sacrifice that is. To them. Submit and obey. It is spiritual abuse and is considered as witchcraft and divination. Obeying and following those intimidating and manipulating demands brings bondage. Once you’re fallen for it, you are a slave and no longer free.
What is a true leader after God’s heart? Like I’ve mentioned before, in order to learn we need to have a humble and teachable spirit. There is no way you can learn and grow without that. A leader is supposed to be ahead of you, able to teach you things you do not yet know. Fact is that the further you grow to higher spiritual levels, the more dependent you become. The more you realize how desperately we all need His grace. The closer we grow to His standards of holiness, the more authority we will gain in the spiritual world. But in the natural world, these experiences will make you extremely humble. The higher you grow, the more you realize that it is not you doing all the great stuff. It is Him. We can only be because He is. So when I hear people brag about their great titles and their spiritual level, I know that they are far from where they pretend to be. Someone who lives close to God has always a humble attitude. The closer you are to God, the more pride fades away. For in God’s presence, there is no room for pride.
Another form of witchcraft and divination that is commonly found is praying against other people, congregations or ministries. These prayers always come from the same attitude of trusting in own understanding, believing the other people or organization(s) are wrong. You shall correct them by prayer. It is pure witchcraft and divination. It is an attempt to control those people by your prayers. Keep in mind that control never has changed people. God always offers a choice and the ability to choose freely. God makes sons, satan makes slaves. Prayers against other people are evil, no matter what beautiful religious words are used. At the moment you use your prayers to make someone do something, you are using witchcraft and divination.
Witchcraft and divination are a huge problem in the congregations of today. In The Netherlands these spiritual forces are mostly seen in the form of the spirits of Jezebel and Ahab. If you want to know more about that, you can read the series I wrote about that topic. Witchcraft and divination are widely spread in the congregations. Wherever their tools are being used by the leadership, and wherever people submitted to that, there are only slaves left. Slaves can’t be a governing body, they can only be controlled. The responsibility is in the hands of the leaders. While our nations are going downhill with a stunning speed, many congregations are way too busy dealing with their own issues rather than dealing with the fate of their nation.
I’m not saying it’s easy to be a leader or to be the governing congregation God wants us to be. I believe this can be very hard at times. Yet we always have a choice. Are you a leader practicing these things? We serve a merciful God and His aim is never to destroy but to restore. His aim always is to save, heal, deliver and restore. But in order to get there repentance is needed. Without repentance there is no salvation, no healing, no deliverance and no restoration. If you are a member of such a congregation, the best advice is to run away from it as far as possible. As long as you are under that sort of leadership, you will always be strangled and not able to grow any further. Pray for insight and wisdom on how to deal with the situation and obey whatever God tells you to do, regardless of the opinions of men.
Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.