On Sunday, I shared part two of our Building Faith series. I shared from the book of Esther and we spoke about opportunities for “such a time as this” from Esther 4:14.
In relaying the events of the book of Esther we spoke about the spiritual oposition and attacks that we face as believers. I called them “Haman-style” attacks, named after the evil man Haman who sought to completely eliminate the Jewish people.
As I promised on Sunday, here is a supplement to the sermon. I apologize if this is a little longer than my previous blogs. But it could be worse, I could have just kept going on Sunday!!! 😜
If you miss Sunday, or want to listen again, you can check out the sermon by clicking the link: * * * CLICK HERE * * *
Overcoming the “Haman-style” attacks in your life
As followers of Christ, we expect opposition. We know there is a war being fought in the heavens and the souls of man lie in the balance. What are we to do when we find ourselves in the middle of such an attack? Here are three thoughts to help you rise above.
1. We overcome attacks by looking upward, not inward. The title character in the book of Esther is a remarkable woman. Despite her own sordid past, Esther was used powerfully to bring deliverance to not just her family, but her entire nation.
At the beginning of the book of Esther, we are told a little bit about her life. Her parents were dead, and her older uncle had taken her in. She was an orphaned Jewish girl in a society where girls were already treated as second-class citizens and property. Her plight could not have been a more desperate one.
Despite her own significant baggage, Esther chose to think of God first and the welfare of others, even before herself. This outlook is powerfully rewarded by God who provides deliverance for her and for Israel.
When we are under attack, we feel the temptation to succumb to the “Woe is me” mindset. Our flesh feels gratified in thinking that we have it the worst. Poor us. And it can quickly become all about me, me, me. But Esther takes a different route. Instead, she relies on God, and turns her interest towards others. The result of this: God delivers HER!
When under attack, don’t simply look to yourself, or your own problems. But look upward to God, involve yourself in HIS PLAN, and watch the deliverance of our God follow!
2. Take every thought captive. As I shared in the message, our biggest battleground is the 6-7 inches between our ears. This is where the enemy does some of his most dangerous work. The battlefield is in the MIND!
2 Corinthians 10:4-5 (NIV) says it like this: The weapons we fight with are NOT the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
We cannot always control every thought that jumps into our mind. But we can fully control those thoughts we choose to dwell on or even act on.
If what you are thinking is not in line with God’s Word, THROW IT OUT. Take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ.
We are not victims of our thoughts, attitudes, emotions, or mindsets. Through Christ we have the ability to overcome sinful thoughts and attitudes. Jesus can demolish strongholds (v. 3) in your mind. Strongholds of guilt, anxiety, depression, fear, anger, and so on.
Esther could have very easily succumbed to fear, but instead she CHOSE to take that thought captive. If we want victory on this most important of battlefields, our mind, we must take every thought captive as well.
3. Lastly, trust in Him even when you can’t see Him. In our daily struggles, we often over-rely on our own sense and logic. Do not suppose for a minute that I am promoting abandoning those things. God has given us our senses and our minds to help us through. However, it is so easy for our thinking to become corrupted or one-sided. We can become over-reliant on ourselves, and in the process, we push God out. We must ALWAYS leave room for FAITH!
God tells us throughout scripture that He works in ways we cannot see. He tells us that His ways are HIGHER than our ways. And we are told repeatedly, to put our faith in GOD! In the midst of an attack, we try to find solace in other people, their opinions, doctor’s reports, statistics, balance sheets, and the like. But the most important thing that many of us leave out is our FAITH.Esther trusted in God wen the circumstances were stacked against her. We too must learn to trust in Him, no matter what things are looking like.
Closing Thought: The Christian life is about victory, and learning to live in the victory that Christ has provided for us. When we go into battle, remember who is going before us, Jesus. Keep your eyes on God, keep your nose in His Word, and do those things HE has called us to do. Trust Him and do not ever lose hope!
1 John 4:4b …greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.