This post contains notes on how to protect the soul and prosper that I took of Pastor Joseph Prince’s sermon preached on 27 November 2011.
I am a spirit man who have a soul and live in a body. Before I knew Christ, my spirit is dead. When I accepted Him as Saviour, my spirit is born again. It is now righteous and the devil cannot touch it. Jesus has won that from him.
That leaves the soul and the body. 3 John 1:2 says that as my soul prosper, I will prosper and be in good health. Prosperity of my soul brings prosperity to my body. Because of this, the devil attacks my soul or mind so that I may not be well physically. That is the only area that he can attack now for Abba God gave me free will which means this area is under me. How do I counter the devil’s attacks and attempts to rob me of my blessings in Christ?
2 Corinthians 10:3-6 NASB
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete.”
1. The obedience of Christ
I used to think that obedience of Christ in this verse is for us to emulate. I win spiritual warfare by being obedient like Christ. I didn’t know that I was setting myself up for failure. For fail I did. I tried and tried and came to a point of realization that I can never be like Jesus. Romans 5:19 defines what the obedience of Christ is. It is Christ’s obedience to God. The key point is that by His obedience I am made righteous. Nothing I do to obey God can save me and nothing I do to disobey God can disqualify me. It is a gift, freely given, paid by the blood of Christ.
Taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ means reminding myself of Christ’s obedience to God’s purpose of saving me by grace and faith alone. Romans 10:2-4 talks about how my effort to achieve righteousness frustrates God’s gift of righteousness.
2. I am God’s beloved
2 Corinthians 11:2 NASB
“But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.”
Focusing on the person and work of Christ is simple and pure but the devil doesn’t just throw up his hands and give up. He continues to try to deceive me through subtle and crafty schemes; distracting my mind from focusing totally on Christ. When tempted by the devil in the wilderness, Jesus countered by saying that man does not live by bread alone by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:1-4). What is every word that proceeds from the mouth of God? This isn’t words in the bible but words that God spoke. Incidentally, the verse immediately before Matthew 4:1 in Matthew 3:17 recorded the spoken word of God:
and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.”
I believe that Jesus countered the devil’s temptation with it. In the same way, I believe that by focusing on the truth that I am God’s beloved and that in me He is well pleased, I can counter the devil. Love evokes strong emotions. This connects with the truth of Christ’s obedience to create a strong helmet of salvation.
3. As He is, so also are we in this world
On what ground can I say that I am God’s beloved? Jesus is, no doubt about it. But me? Christ’s obedience has won me salvation and righteousness but belovedness?
1 John 4:17 NASB
“By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world.
As Jesus is in Heaven, so am I in this world. Whatever He has in Heaven, I have in this world. The blessings of God for me is for now and the present. Not in the past nor in the future.
In conclusion, I am persuaded that to protect my soul and prosper, I must focus on Jesus as the one who was obedient to God on my behalf, focus on God’s great love for me and remember that Jesus is my champion. Every battle He won, I won.
This sermon note is based on my thoughts and understanding of what was preached. It doesn’t represent the opinion and stand of New Creation Church, Singapore.