A Lot Of Hurt!
The following article is by Pastor Travis Burke and used with permission of Pastor Burke.
We live in a world that lives for pleasure yet dwells in depression. 1 out of every 10 Americans are now on anti-depressants, yet we live in a nation with more ways to make one’s self happy than any other nation on earth. There were nearly 40,000 suicides last year in this country. People live in darkness and depression fighting their own thoughts and emotions until getting to a place of exhaustion and depletion. Sadly, this is not just occurring in the lost world, but in God’s churches as well.
HURT. It’s a terrible word. The word means “mental pain, offense, grieving; to injure, to cause pain.” For many, this is life. If it isn’t the mental pain, it is the physical (or at least the belief one is in physical pain). The United States makes up only 4.6 percent of the world’s population, but consumes 80 percent of its opioids — and 99 percent of the world’s hydrocodone, the opiate that is in Vicodin. Why the usage? Because they HURT.
In the Bible, demonic forces are always bringing hurt upon people. For example, consider the demoniac in Luke 4:33-35:
“And in the synagogue there was a man, which had a spirit of an unclean devil, and cried out with a loud voice, saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art; the Holy One of God. And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. And when the devil had thrown him in the midst, he came out of him, and hurt him not.”
Also, Mark 5 speaks of the demoniac of gadara who “always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones.” HURT. Crying and cutting himself was the result of a great demonic presence.
Our nation has not only a sin problem, but a demonic mastery. We truly, as no other time in this nation’s history, deal with “spiritual wickedness in high places.” Those lost without Christ in this world stand no hope in overcoming the hurt without the power of the liberating Gospel.
Sadly, many Christians deal with demonic hurt as well. A believer in Christ cannot be demonically possessed, but can be demonically oppressed, depressed, obsessed. Before salvation, we were of our father the Devil who held possession of our life. At salvation, the Holy Spirit (Eph. 1:13) indwells us, and never more can Satan hold possession of our life! Satan then seeks oppression, depression, and obsession. Satan can attack from without in your life to bring oppression through circumstances, temptations, and the past. Once he is allowed place in your life, he then will bring a depression and darkness into the life. Doubt will fill the mind of the depressed. Soon, by the believer giving place to the devil, that believer can be demonically obsessed. The HURTing will separate themselves from all they love, their church, their faith, and will soon lose even the ability to stop the wrong thoughts from overwhelming them. They are demonically obsessed. (Eph. 4:27 “Neither give place to the devil.” Rom. 7:18 “For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.” )
The Lord wants to come into your body and take up residence with your spirit. (1 Cor. 6:13-20; Rom. 8:9, 14-16). The Lord desires us to have His joy and His joy remain in us (Jn 15:11). We are instructed repeatedly in the New Testament to “Rejoice in the Lord!” In the Bible, God always desires to keep his children FROM HURT (Daniel 3:25 “He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt…” Daniel 6:21-22 “Then said Daniel unto the king, O king, live for ever. My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions’ mouths, that they have not hurt me…”)
David, because of his yielding himself to temptation, had become filled with sorrow and obsession. In Psalm 51 we read that he felt dirty (vs. 2), his failure was ever before him (vs. 3), he felt cast away from God’s presence (vs. 10), and wanted to have restored “THE JOY OF THY SALVATION.”
Satan cannot have the soul of the believer, but should he take from them their joy, he takes from them their power to make a difference in someone else’s life. A believer robbed of joy becomes HURT and then all his life’s focus and efforts are upon himself. The Devil is a thief.
Consider John 10:10
“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy:”-This is Satan.
“I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”-This is our Lord!!
So, how do we take back this ground yielded to Satan and get back our joy? Consider three passages:
1. Daniel 6: In this passage, Daniel was under attack, was hated, and lived in a land that was not his home. Yet, he had, in vs. 3, “an excellent spirit.” If anyone had reason to HURT, Daniel did. But rather, he had an excellent spirit. How? The answer is in verse 10, “…he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.” He talked to God and praised Him three times a day!
2. Psalm 119:161-168: The author was being persecuted (161) and lied about (163)-he was under attack. Yet, he had (165) “great peace” and was not HURT. How? “I rejoice at thy word…thy law do I love…seven times a day do I praise thee.” He focused on God’s Word and held it dear. When one is under demonic attack, his mind and feelings will lie to him and all he can trust is God’s Word. Then, he praised the Lord 7 times a day. The more intense the battle, the more often we must praise the Lord. Why praise the Lord? We are thanking Him for all the ways He blesses us. Then we must answer this question, “why does He keep blessing me?” The only answer we have is “He loves me!” The more we realize He loves us, the more we love Him. The more we love Him, the more we “keep His commandments” and His joy remains in us (Jude 21). This is why Peter instructs believers in his first epistle that when they are in “heaviness through manifold temptations,” to “gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according tot he former lusts in your ignorance, but as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation.” The mind will begin to deceive you when in you are HURTing. Cling to His Word and Praise Him.
3. Colossians 1:13-14: These verses are powerful verses in God’s Word. Revelation 12:11 reads, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony…” They 2 keys to victory over “that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world” are Salvation and our testimony. You must be saved to overcome. Second, the believer overcomes by the Word of their testimony. This is where these verses in Colossians come in. I believe that if every believer takes the time to praise God at least three times a day (keep a written journal to look over at times to affirm God’s love to your mind) and when under attack audibly give these verses as their testimony, the HURT will leave their lives. Read aloud these verses:
“Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear son: in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:”
Glory be to the Lamb!!! I am saved! I am delivered from the power of darkness! I am in the kingdom of His dear Son! I am redeemed by the precious blood! My sins are forgiven!!
Believer, you do not have to live in hurt. No matter the past, no matter the temptation, no matter what your mind tells you, God’s Word is true and it says I am delivered!
This is not just a sermon I put together, it was my life. I spent two long years in HURT. God graciously showed me how to have victory and I believe God allows these times:
Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.-2 Cor 1:4
So many HURTing seemingly everywhere. My friends, take it from me, God doesn’t want you HURTing, and He will take it all away if we will take the time to lean on Him, see His love, love His Word, praise His name. The HURT can be removed!