By Wendell Jellison
When God speaks to the church, we should always remember and appreciate what God has said or done through His Word or His Gifts. I want to share with you a couple of the messages that God has sent to our church.
One of the first things God made me to realize was that we were involved in serious spiritual warfare.
In Ephesians 6:12, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
This verse means that there are demons, evil spirits and Satan himself who is attacking the church.
When I came to pastor the First UPC of Greenfield, I made up my mind that I would find out why so many said that there couldn’t be a Pentecostal revival in Greenfield.
Well, it didn’t take long until I began to realize that Satan was on the attack with strong spiritual warfare. It was at this point that someone put me on to the fact that we live in a part of the country known, by a governor’s decree in 1952, as the Kingdom of Skullbonia. From roughly the Tennessee River, west to the Mississippi River in Northwest Tennessee, it is officially known as the Kingdom of Skullbonia. Look it up on the Internet. You can Google Kingdom of Skullbonia and get a lot of information including a glimpse into the sins of the past: the sins of the land that has created a brass ceiling, as it were, keeping the gospel seed from flourishing in people’s lives as it should, because the rain of the Holy Ghost has been hindered through the Prince of the Kingdom of Skullbonia.
It’s not always that we are given the name of spirits to attack through prayer. But thank God, this prince is coming down, or more correctly, is being hindered; is being relocated; is being crippled by the prayers of praying people in Northwest Tennessee and the rain of the Holy Ghost is falling.
The spiritual brass ceiling is opening and we are witnessing break- throughs in the Kingdom of God with a greater spiritual hunger among God’s people. More souls are being added to the Kingdom of God as He is building His church and the gates of hell are not going to prevail against it. Or, to put it another way, as the church moves forward toward hell’s authority, hell will not be able to stop us!
Spiritual warfare affects individuals, families, churches, preachers; literally anyone who is trying to please God! You need to realize that the devil is fighting you and you must resist him.
So, firstly, here in Greenfield, I realized that we were involved in serious spiritual warfare that required drastic measures of prayer, fasting, a strong measure of faith, and a complete trust in the Word of God.
Secondly, the Lord has wonderfully and powerfully revealed to me and our church body the necessity and power of unity.
In Psalms 133:1-3 we read, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments; As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even lift for evermore. ”
You can have all truth. You can have great organization. You can have outstanding music. You can have anointed preaching. But, without unity the blessing of God cannot flow, the anointing cannot bless and God is hindered from working in your behalf.
Notice the Scripture, “for there the Lord commanded the blessing.” Where does the Lord command the blessing? Where unity is! Where there is unity, God can work.
Having unity doesn’t mean that we all think alike. It means we have the love of God and we care for each other and have a right spirit, preferring one another.
Unity in a church needs to be protected. Unity in a body of believers needs to be valued. Every member needs to work to insure unity in every situation. Problems can be solved without destroying a church’s unity. This also is not just about church unity. The same holds true in a marriage, a family, a relationship. “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amos 3:3).
I believe that one of the greatest problems in churches today is the lack of unity. A Biblical unity would create an atmosphere where apostolic doctrine could be preached and practiced. Biblical unity would create a spiritual power that would enable God to pour out of His Spirit upon us in a measure that would break the strongholds of Satan and set the captive free!
Yes, there is indeed a war taking place for the souls of men and women.
One of the greatest tools in spiritual warfare is unity among any entity. There God commands the blessing!
Three Key Spiritual Weapons
I am always thrilled when I read in Acts 5: 12-16, ”And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people,’ (and they were all with one accord in Solomon’s porch. And of the rest durst no man join himself to them: but the people magnified them. And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.) Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them. There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed everyone. ”
We know that these experiences were just not consigned to the first church.
Mark 16:15-20, ”And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved,’ but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues,’ They shall take up serpents,’ and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them,’ they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen. ”
The church today has the same opportunity for spiritual power as the first church did in the book of Acts. Some may not possess it, but we have the same opportunity. How do I know this today? Because the Bible says so!
More than anything else in this world, I want to see a demonstration of His power in these last days to empower the church to bring in the harvest. The fields are ready to be harvested. We are to pray for laborers to work in the harvest. Many people won’t get involved in the harvest because they don’t have the saving and enabling power of the Holy Ghost in their own lives.
There are three notable spiritual weapons that the early church had that still belong to the Church today. The signs, wonders and miracles that were wrought by the early Apostles, disciples, and followers of Christ were made possible by at least these three weapons: the Word, the Name, and the Holy Ghost.
First of all, they had the Word: the Word of God, the message of salvation through Jesus Christ. No, they didn’t have the Bible as we have it; they were actually living out the writing of the New Testament. But, they had the message of the good news of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
“Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, carne out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. And there was great joy in that city” (Acts 8:5-8).
The preaching of the Word of God brought these miracles and conversions! Many other instances in the book of Acts bear out the importance of the Word of God in bringing a manifestation of His power into His church and His work.
The second thing was the Name! The only saving name in the universe: Jesus!
“Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6)
Throughout the early days of the church, it was the name that brought the power.
Acts 4:12 tells us why. “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
The third powerful weapon against Satan was the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God. “And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy. Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness” (Acts 4:31).
Men filled with the Holy Ghost discerned and cast out devils, healed the sick, raised the dead and prayed until the heavens were shaken. Paul and Silas sang and prayed until the prison doors were opened!
Church, we have the same power today. The Word, the Name, and the Spirit!
The above article, “Spiritual Warfare and Unity” was written by Wendell Jellison. The article was excerpted from Jellison’s book, “Spiritual Warfare in the Kingdom of Skullbonia”
The material is most likely copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study and research purposes.