Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.
Before we continue to reveal strongholds that imprison us and separate us from God’s blessings we need to address the backsliding issue. Otherwise, no matter what we understand of God’s Word, sin, salvation, strongholds, or deliverance, we may never really be free.
Freedom in Christ comes to us with a humble heart. That is, complete submission to God, his will, and his word. We need a better understanding of God’s love before we can blame God for any pain, any backsliding, or any grief. Hardships may be brought on by sin which has caused a stronghold in our lives that we refuse to give up. Denial is a stronghold as well.
John 5:14 Afterward, when Jesus found him in the temple, He said to him, See, you are well! Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.
Chronic backsliding has its roots in rebellion. Have we really submitted to Christ? If we are in the throes of backsliding, how can we say we are in Christ? In Christ we are a new creature. Old [sinful] things pass away and all things become new in our lives. We see sin for what it really is–separation from God.
In Christ there is fullness of joy. But are we really in Christ when we give in to sin? Romans 8:1 assures us that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. At the moment of our rebellion we have turned from Christ Jesus. We can’t honestly say we are in Christ if we are in sin. We deceive ourselves if we do.
Christ will never turn from us. Nothing can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus. But we can choose to turn from Christ and to sin again after we have been delivered–we then stand on rocky ground or among thorns. Do we really want to be in sin at the moment of our death or at the moment of Christ’s return?
1. Turn back quickly, permanently, and thoroughly. Humble yourself. Submit to Christ. Turn from evil or anything that has separated you from the love of God or God’s Word [John 1:1].
2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine and test and evaluate your own selves to see whether you are holding to your faith and showing the proper fruits of it. Test and prove yourselves [not Christ]. Do you not yourselves realize and know [thoroughly by an ever-increasing experience] that Jesus Christ is in you–unless you are [counterfeits] disapproved on trial and rejected?
2. Recognize the temptations that draw you and refuse them. Shut them out of your life completely. When we are weak that’s when Christ is strongest. Humbly ask him for strength.
James 4:6 But He gives us more and more grace (power of the Holy Spirit, to meet this evil tendency and all others fully). That is why He says, God sets Himself against the proud and haughty, but gives grace [continually] to the lowly (those who are humble enough to receive it).
3. Avoid areas where sin abounds. That means avoid or leave areas that draw you into sin or sinful ways or thoughts. Sinful thoughts lead to sinful actions.
Proverbs 14:16 A wise man suspects danger and cautiously avoids evil, but the fool bears himself insolently and is [presumptuously] confident.
Romans 12:9 [Let your] love be sincere (a real thing); hate what is evil [loathe all ungodliness, turn in horror from wickedness], but hold fast to that which is good.
4. Watch out for the temptations that come from associations with sinful people. Choose your friendships wisely.
Proverbs 14:14 The backslider in heart [from God and from fearing God] shall be filled with [the fruit of] his own ways, and a good man shall be satisfied with [the fruit of] his ways [with the holy thoughts and actions which his heart prompts and in which he delights].
Proverbs 13:20 Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.
Proverbs 25:26 Like a muddied fountain and a polluted spring is a righteous man who yields, falls down, and compromises his integrity before the wicked.
5. Stop, before it starts. A little sin–a little backsliding may seem harmless. But in the end it leads to pain and separation from freedom in Christ.
Acts 3:19 So change the way you think and act, and turn to God to have your sins removed.
Jeremiah 8:8-9 “ ‘How can you say that you are wise and that you have the Lord’s teachings? The scribes have used their pens to turn these teachings into lies. 9Wise people are put to shame, confused, and trapped. They have rejected the word of the Lord. They don’t really have any wisdom.