It’s not uncommon to hear people ask, “Why did God permit this?” “Why doesn’t God do something about this?” or, “Why did Jesus let that happen to me?” The answer may surprise you, but God can’t do anything about it. It’s up to the ones asking the question to exercise their authority in Christ and enforce the Word of God in their lives.
Jesus is the Head of the Church, and we in the Church are His body (Eph. 5:23, 30). Authority is conferred not only upon the Head but also upon the body. The same authority the Head has, the body has. Our physical head cannot do a thing without our body. In fact, our head can’t do anything except through our body.
The same is true with Christ and the Church. Jesus is not here in a physical body, so it’s up to the Church to enforce His will on the earth. Instead of doing this, many Christians don’t do anything and blame God for what they are experiencing. It’s not a matter of God letting bad things happen to them. They have actually allowed bad things to happen because they haven’t accepted their responsibility and exercised their authority in Christ.
This is what happened in the Garden of Eden. We see clearly from the following passage that Adam never took responsibility for his actions.
It’s a lot easier to blame someone else rather than place the blame where it belongs—squarely on our shoulders.
8 And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.
9 And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.
11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.
When God asked Adam if he ate the forbidden fruit, Adam immediately blamed Eve and God. Adam turned the situation around by saying, “The woman whom thou gavest to be with me.” In other words, Adam was saying, “It’s Your fault, God. You and the woman are to blame!”
People today aren’t much different. It’s a lot easier to blame someone else than to place the blame where it belongs—squarely on our shoulders. God made provision for us to be overcomers. We can be victorious even in the most trying circumstances. It may feel as though our situation is beyond our control, but God has provided a way of escape from everything that comes against us. Our victory is found in His Word, the Name of Jesus, the blood of Jesus, and our authority in Christ.
We’d like to think we’re not responsible for the adversity we encounter, whether it’s sickness, financial lack, or some other trouble. But we are more responsible for what happens to us than many of us would like to admit. It’s up to us to use what He has given us to change our circumstances.
We cannot allow ourselves to become so caught up in day-to-day affairs that we don’t hear God’s still, small voice when He tries to warn us and direct our paths to safety. We must be quick to use our authority when symptoms come on our bodies. And during adversity, we must guard our lips and only speak words of faith.
When we realize that Christ’s authority also belongs to every member of His Body, we will never be the same. We will dominate the devil instead of letting him dominate us!
How to Deal With the Devil
As long as Satan can keep you in unbelief or hold you in the arena of reason, he will whip you in every battle. But if you will hold him in the arena of faith and the Spirit, you will whip him every time. He won’t argue with you about the Name of Jesus—he’s afraid of that Name.
The most effective way to pray can be when you demand your rights. Peter at the Gate Beautiful did not pray for the lame man. He demanded that he be healed (Acts 3:6). You are not demanding of God when you demand your rights—you’re demanding of the devil.
Jesus said in John 14:13–14, “And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do. . . . If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.” These verses are not talking about prayer. The Greek word here is “demand,” not “ask.”
On the other hand, John 16:23–24 is referring to prayer. “And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you. Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.” The Father is mentioned here in connection with prayer, but He is not mentioned in the passage from John chapter 14.
The Greek actually reads, “Whatever you demand as your rights and privileges.” The Body of Christ must learn their rights and begin to demand them!
Kenneth E. Hagin
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