You hear it said often:
"Speak to your mountain."
"I bind that spirit...."
"I loose the power of God into...."
People love this kind of stuff. Preachers love to say it. It gives us a feeling of power and control. And why not? Are we not the "children of God?" Didn't he say that what we bind or loose, he will too?
Lets dig a little bit deeper here.
The word bind here comes from the Greek "deo" and means:
1) to bind tie, fasten
a) to bind, fasten with chains, to throw into chains
1) Satan is said to bind a woman bent together by means of a demon, as his messenger, taking possession of the woman and preventing her from standing upright
2) to bind, put under obligation, of the law, duty etc.
a) to be bound to one, a wife, a husband3) to forbid, prohibit, declare to be illicit
See, you say. We CAN bind the devil. Not so fast. We have the power to CAST out demons and resist them. But where is the scripture that says we can bind them? Where is the scripture that says we can rebuke them? Even the archangel Michael didn't take that kind of authority. He told Satan "The LORD rebuke thee." (Jude 1:9)
So, what about loosing? The word loose here comes from the Greek, lyo, and it means:
1) to loose any person (or thing) tied or fastened
a) bandages of the feet, the shoes,
b) of a husband and wife joined together by the bond of matrimony
c) of a single man, whether he has already had a wife or has not yet married
2) to loose one bound, i.e. to unbind, release from bonds, set free
a) of one bound up (swathed in bandages)
b) bound with chains (a prisoner), discharge from prison, let go
3) to loosen, undo, dissolve, anything bound, tied, or compacted together
a) an assembly, i.e. to dismiss, break up
b) laws, as having a binding force, are likened to bonds
c) to annul, subvert
d) to do away with, to deprive of authority, whether by precept or act
e) to declare unlawful
f) to loose what is compacted or built together, to break up, demolish, destroy
g) to dissolve something coherent into parts, to destroyh) metaph., to overthrow, to do away with
So, can we indeed "loose the power of God" into anything? No.
Not on our own.
I believe that the proper understanding of what Jesus told Peter (and by extension, the church) is found in Jesus' mission. We are "Christians" The word means "Christ-like."
As I've said before, Jesus died to prepare a spiritual place for us so that WE could have the kind of relationship with the spirit of God that the son of God (the flesh) enjoyed.
His intention was not to build a religious organization. Rather, it was to develop a "body of believers" that would- through HIM- be empowered BY him to do the things that he did. We are to be his hands and feet. Healing the sick, raising the dead, setting the captives free (through him), etc.
Just as Jesus started his days (and many times ended his days) in prayer, we are to do the same. Even though he was God in the flesh, the secret to his ministry was the relationship of flesh and spirit that was built through prayer and time in the word.
ALL our ministry begins in prayer and study. THEN, we are to obey his leading. WHEN we obediently act or speak, THEN all the power of heaven is released to back up our obedience to God. In this way, what we bind and loose on earth, is bound and loosed in heaven.
The more we pray, the closer we get to him. The closer we get to him, the more we begin to be able to discern whether it's HIS voice, our voice, or the voices of our enemies we are hearing. If it's ours, we repent. If it's the enemies, we respond with the word (resist). If it's HIS, we submit and obey.
We have become a presumptuous generation. We have bought into the "name it, claim it" falsehoods. God is NOT our servant to do as we please. We are HIS servants to do as HE pleases. We can't order God to heal someone. All we can do is ask. If HE says to say, "be thou healed", then say it under his power and anointing. But, we can't just say it and expect him to obey us.
We are his body to do what he says. WE are to complete HIS mission through HIS leading. So, what was his mission?
18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
Notice, "heal the brokenhearted."
Another definition of a "bind" is a bandage. A bandage stops further infection, keeps in the medicine, and allows healing to begin. When we "bind" the hurting, we are placing a holy bandage on their spiritual wound that allows inner healing in their lives.
Binding is not, as some teach, an offensive weapon. It is a healing balm to the hurting.
Most sins begin through a response to pain. They are bound to that sin because of some past pains and hurts. If we will stay close to God and do as he says, we will be able- through him- to enable inner healing in the lives of many. This helps them to repent and takes away (eventually) the perceived need for the sin in their lives.
Notice, "to set at liberty them that are bruised." When we set something free, we loose them. There are many in this world that have been bruised and battered by both their own choices and the choices of those around them. If we will walk close with the Lord, he will help us- again through him- to do and/or say something that will cut the ropes and break the chains from their hearts. This will allow them to begin to heal and be set free in Jesus.
So, the true order is this:
HE says bind, we do or say as he told us to, he unleashes his resources to accomplish what he told us to do.
When he says loose, we do or say as he told us to, he unleashes his resources to accomplish what he told us to do.
If we try to circumvent the first step in the binding and loosing cycles, then we mistakenly try to do the second, the third part doesn't happen.
As Christians, we truly do have a lot of power at our fingertips. But, this power cannot be used arbitrarily and at OUR choosing. This power is to be used when HE wants and how HE wants.
The popular song by Casting crowns, asks, "If we are the body, why aren't his arms reaching, why aren't his hand healing..." The reason is either a) we aren't his body (some that claim to be truly are not), or b) we are trying to improperly bind and loose.
God has limitless power and resources available for his body to use, but we can only access them through the patterns and ways HE has ordained. If we break from these, we are powerless against a dying world- and defenseless against an enemy that has sworn to destroy us.
If we will truly submit to Jesus, then we can become his body indeed.
We are his body, lets let him use us as he sees fit. If he speaks, then we should speak. If he says do something, then we should do it. Our ministries should grow out of our relationship with him and through him, not out of our own minds, attitudes, or popular methodologies.
We plug into his power through the new birth, but we only use his power when HE turns on the switch, not when WE decide.