2 Corinthians 10:3-5 For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ. (ESV)
A battlefield is a place or situation of conflict. The battlefield of the mind is a conflict area where there is a raging within the mind between different choices. These choices will determine what will gain ground and hold a person strong. Thoughts are formed and shaped in the mind. Many are, however, quick to blame the devil for the negative thoughts acted upon; hence want to extricate themselves from responsibilities.
The Bible, however, declares that it is what comes out of a man that defiles him. This clearly shows we have a part to play in the processing of the thoughts that filter into our minds. Thoughts are things; but what you do with these thoughts is crucial in ensuring victory in the battle. One thing is certain; you are supposed to win in the battle of life because God had made divine provision before the foundation of the world for your deliverance.
Whatsoever captures your mind engages it. The Word of God is explicit that our life goes in the direction of our thoughts – ‘… as a man thinks, so he is.’ You are what you think. You can therefore only reap what you sow and can only birth forth and replicate what is within you.
The Bible declares in Proverbs 4:23 that we need to guard our heart with all diligence. The responsibility to keep, nurture, protect and guard our minds is on us. Take charge and control what you allow grow and mature in your mind because it is a war zone. A lot of things want to gain our attention but we need to maintain our focus on the victory that is laid before us. Friend, there is curiosity in a place tagged as restricted. Men want to peep at what is confidential, eavesdrop at a private conversation and generally desire what is restricted. The human mind is in a state of conflict between the existing ideologies and a change which is in accordance with the Word of God. This battle keeps evolving as a revelation is needed for the next phase. You will always need to deal with the conflict of your mind.
How strongholds develop in the mind.
A stronghold is a place where a particular belief and or idea is formed, strongly defended and upheld. It is also a place that has been fortified in order to be protected against attack. There is now a conflict between what the Word of God says and the ideas that have been built in our minds. The belief systems disguise and try to deceive the unsuspecting mind of the true nature of strongholds. Please, realize that strongholds don’t advertise themselves as such. As a matter of fact, these are things we are used to and consider a part of us:
Temperament and Personality
Proverbs 16:32: He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit, than he who captures a city. (NASV)
Temperament refers to the part of an individual’s personality that is often regarded as innate, hence, considered as a part of a person’s attitude. Many bad attitudes and habits are considered tolerable as individuals make the nature of their temperament as reasons and or excuses for the behaviour that is not spirit led. Friends, any attitude that is in conflict with the Word of God is a stronghold and must be dealt with by an absolute subjection to the Word of God. Psychologists have compounded theories of a correlation between temperaments and character, while this is true for the carnal mind; the Scriptures enjoin us to be spiritually minded. We are to renew our minds by the Word of God.
Our mind is like a canvas and whatever we allow will be painted in our hearts and form our attitude and mindset. This will eventually form the picture people see. When we allow the Word of God to direct and lead us, our temperament will become Spirit-controlled.
We are made in the image and likeness of God and as He is, so are we in this world. Your personality should not be a breeding ground for controlling or manipulative attitudes rather, should bring glory to God. Please, remember that what you don’t control will control you.
1 Timothy 1:4: Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do. (KJV)
Ideologies are most times developed through experiences, association, family beliefs and traditions which shape the mindset of individuals that could be strongholds of limitation. Our cultural backgrounds, society, peers, educational background and family have a huge influence on how belief systems and principles are developed in our mind.
Philosophers, scientists and theologians through their experience with matter, theory of evolution, quantum energy and more would want to make conclusions on the existence of God. Knowledge could be a stronghold if not sought by revelation.
A lot of people are controlled by the authority figures in their lives, birth orders, gender, race and others. Please realize we are to gain our identity based on who we are in Christ and not man made expectations. Wanting to be accepted could cause inferiority complex and develop into strongholds of lack of self-worth and condemnation. Some are so engrossed in trying to be people pleasers that they displease themselves and go against the Word of God. If these experiences or expectations are not Word-based, then they shouldn’t be imbibed. There is more to us than what we have experienced, hence, we shouldn’t base our judgments of life solely on things that are temporal and will pass away rather we should on things that are eternal.
1 Corinthians 15:33: Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.
The world is constantly evolving and information whether good or otherwise is now available online, the social media, tablets, mobile phones and all around. Young people and older ones alike see current trends as the norm and consider a contrary view as out-dated or old school. While the advent of computers and the internet has gone a long way in expounding our knowledge and in development, it is crucial we sieve the information we receive and base our mind-set solely on the Word of God. Building a godly mind-set is deliberate and must be consciously developed. The Bible says when the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of God will raise a standard against him. Hallelujah! You have all the arsenals to resist the attacks of the enemy. The Spirit of God is our Source of influence in developing a godly character. Our lingua has to change from happenings around us to revelation based. We cannot afford to be moved by the fear of crisis, economic meltdown, health risk, etc. It is preferable we counter every opposition with God’s word.
Our environment will speak to our frailty and try to control our thought pattern in line with the world system. Please, remember that the world system feeds our mind with thoughts based on the five senses. The environment influences us with trends that are enticing and could be deceptive when in conflict with God’s Word. Refuse to yield to the pressure of being who you are not. We should rather influence others into godly living.
How Strongholds can be destroyed?
Romans 12:1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.(KJV)
Every delicacy has a recipe. So also does a stronghold. Let’s remember strongholds are longstanding ideologies that have formed part of our existence, dealing with them should however not be taken with levity. A stronghold is a place of comfort and when in the mind, it has become a system and pattern of livelihood.
The Word of God has given us the blueprint in ensuring these ungodly strongholds are destroyed; we must renew our minds with the Word of God. Imagine an individual who has been dealing with an ungodly soul tie; this is a dangerous stronghold and many relationships, marriages and lives have been destroyed because someone from either your present or past has a hold on you that controls your emotions in the opposite direction to God’s will. These ties need to be destroyed.
Obtaining deliverance from Strongholds:
Acknowledge there is a stronghold. Accept that you need supernatural help. Receive divine assistance. Renew your mind by the Word of God. Decide to follow through on God’s Word concerning the situation. Stay free and delivered. You are delivered and set free from all forms of restriction and limitation in your minds.
For Further Study:
- Philippians 4:8, John 6:63
Questions for Reflection:
- Do you believe that you can be free from any stronghold?
- What do you think in your mind constantly?
- Do you know what you sow in your mind is what grows in it?
- Lord, help me to resist the thoughts that will not glorify you and to embrace the ones that will lift me up.