Feb. 16, 01

MT 12:25 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, "Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. [26] If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? [27] And if I drive out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. [28] But if I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

MT 12:29 "Or again, how can anyone enter a strong man's house and carry off his possessions unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can rob his house.

[19] I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven." [20] Then he warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ. Matt. 16

I had a dream the other night that involved the enemy and how he attempts to play havoc amongst the body of Christ. I usually don't have dreams that are prophetic in nature, although there have been some in the past. Most of what the Lord reveals to me is through visions and His word being spoken to me. I offer this knowing that many of us perhaps have "strongholds" in areas of our lives. God wants to be free of them. I also submit this to you in the context of a "warning," because I believe this dream was as such--a warning. I trust that we will heed His warnings to us in this hour and press-in to know what He is saying to us.

This began as some of us were in a forest walking through some trees. I noticed that the wind had seemed to change and it affected the trees. Approaching us was a force, an entity, that was very large and semi-transparent. As it came, I stepped aside and it continued moving forward. I immediately went back to the motel where we had been staying and told the others that it was time to leave. We gathered up our belongings and were ready to leave, but some seemed reluctant to go. I had a sense of urgency and again cautioned them that we must go because the enemy was approaching. We got in our car and drove down the road. At one point I remember looking overhead and seeing a tornado cloud, but it was in the shape of a person. We were between a couple of other vehicles on the highway, so I said that we stay close to the other cars and trucks so that we wouldn't be singled-out. The tornado attempted to land upon our vehicle but it was unable to. Eventually we came to another town and came to what seemed to be a cafeteria or a reunion of some sort. We came in and decided to join them. I knew that the enemy was coming and warned several there that we must band together so that we would be stronger. Some continued to eat and be oblivious to my warnings, but a few were willing to help me with this, and to warn others as well.

The scene changed and we were in a church building. I noticed that there was a very large and very strong man that was present there, who seemed to not belong. We were in line for something and he grabbed me and his strength was very strong; I was unable to break free from his grasp. Soon there was some activity happening that involved us with this man and as people continued with this, at one point I decided to slip away quickly and quietly. The man noticed me and attempted to follow up a long flight of steps in the church. I managed to go unnoticed however and decided to see what else was happening in the church. I came into a room where two good friends had been tied down. The rope was wound around each of their arms several times, preventing them from moving or breaking free. I quickly untied them, and told them that we must band together and search out what else was going on. As I walked down the floors of the church building, I noticed that a hole had just been drilled through the floor. It was tiny, but it allowed someone to see through from below and watch whatever was happening above them. I had the sense that the "strong man" was watching through the various holes he had drilled, to determine where people were in the church. There were several holes like this that had been drilled in the wooden floor of the church. I avoided these and continued my search throughout the building. I came upon the pastor. He was kneeling next to a pew at the back of the sanctuary. He was stripped and was seemingly in much distress. Although I didn't speak with him directly, I knew that the enemy had worked his havoc and he had given in to him. There seemed to be some type of sexual sin that he had been involved in, and he was very ashamed of himself.

I went on and a group was ready to sing and practice in the choir. I decided that when the enemy came that I would be a part of the choir. The man didn't approach, and the scene changed. We were outside the church and many had thought of a way that might prevent him from finding us. One suggested their house as a place of refuge and decided to call it the capital. He thought that when and if the enemy would approach them, that they would then go to this house and then all would turn and go down a certain road instead of directly to the house, and thought this might be a good strategy. I knew that this wasn't the answer however, at the time, and was ready to explain to them what we should do instead, but very soon afterwards I awakened.

I believe that this dream has application to us for the body of Christ. I believe that we must first "bind the strong man" before we can go on and be free to serve the Lord fully. The enemy would attempt to find a "stronghold" in our lives. We must be aware of his schemes and not be allowed to be "tied-up" by the spiritual ropes that he would devise for us. We know that "Greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world." It is not through our strength that we wrestle, and it is not with flesh and blood, but we are in a spiritual battle against the hosts of wickedness. Let us pray that any stronghold that is in our lives be broken. Let us be aware of how the strongman would attempt to bind us, and let us grow in our discernment of these things.

The Lord told me that:

"This dream involves principles, principles at work, in order to know how the enemy affects our lives. The holes through the floors of the church, are areas where he has tried to enter in. He can come in many shapes and colors. He would love to be involved in your church activities. He would love to have you held in bondage to guilt and sin. He would be the strong man if you would let him. What are you held in bondage to? What area in your life has been given over to him? Cast out the strong man and tie him up. Bind him with my cords, would say the Lord. Do not fight the battle with earthly weapons, but choose for yourself spiritual weapons from my arsenal. Free those who are held in bondage. Minister to the afflicted in your churches. Proclaim this as the year of the Lord's vengeance. Take back what the enemy has stolen. Bind the strong man, I would say. It is time for him to not enter your houses anymore. He has attempted to tear-down and disrupt many of my houses of prayer. No more will I allow this to happen. "

(The Lord showed me an ancient-looking door with huge hinges on it. It was being opened and several people had taken a strong man and had tied him up, and were now taking him to the door. He was thrown into the room behind this door quickly, and the door was shut, and a key locked this door. Then I was shown a man upon a throne, and it was the Lord himself, proclaiming justice. He held one hand up and with the other one he had a balance in his hand. )

"I proclaim justice, justice to the oppressed. I proclaim a year of new beginnings. I proclaim a year of taking the offensive with the enemy. Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."

Stephen Hanson