Two weeks ago, Pastor Dennis preached on the spirit of false rejection, one of the three strongholds we’ve been praying against during our Media Fast. After outlining the signs of the spirit of false rejection, he also highlighted a solution to break this spirit in our lives: to prioritize God’s Word above all else. Although I’m a fellow contender against this spirit (I personally identify with many of the signs of rejection), I’d like to highlight a few biblical truths from Scripture that I’ve meditated on to overcome my battles with the spirit of false rejection.
WE HAVE A COMMON ENEMY
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12, NIV)
Just as civil war handicaps a nation from effectively fighting its world enemies, division cripples a church called to be the light to the world. The Enemy is well aware of this principle, so he comes in to “divide and conquer” the Body of Christ with the spirit of false rejection. Satan knows the power of a unified body, because he witnessed how Jesus’ ministry hinged upon His unity with the Father (John 5:19, 17:11). He also knows the weakness of an isolated spirit—the unfruitful branch that is disconnected from the vine. If he can simply turn our hearts against one another, his mission to steal, kill, & destroy is nearly complete.
Therefore, it is crucial for us to know that our struggle with false rejection is not against our brothers and sisters (flesh and blood), but against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms! You and I, as well as all the members in our church, are on the same team. We are fellow comrades fighting a spiritual battle against the Prince of this world. When we shake off the Enemy’s deception and adopt the true, Biblical mindset, we begin to seek unity, forgiveness, and reconciliation. Whenever I feel offended or hurt by someone, I try to re-imagine the situation through spiritual lens. I see how the Enemy is trying to take down God’s creation, love, and goodness—yet here I am bickering with my own teammate because he hurt my feelings. A metaphor to help put it into perspective: there is an abominable monster destroying the city into pieces, but the Power Rangers are still offended because Red Ranger was too bossy the other day during training. When we let the spirit of false rejection reside in the church, this is exactly what we are doing!
DIVINE POWER TO DEMOLISH STRONGHOLDS
“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish argument and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5, NIV).
Expounding on the spiritual warfare described in Ephesians 6, these verses promise that we hold weapons of divine power to demolish strongholds. The Enemy poses arguments and wayward theories to counter the truth, but we take them captive under Christ. Moreover, the arguments and pretensions that Paul refers to is all-inclusive, which means even our own thoughts can set themselves up against the knowledge of God. The Bible calls and gives us authority to filter through our thoughts and imaginations, bind them, and cast them at the feet of Jesus. Do our thoughts agree with what Jesus said during His time on earth? The arguments that we are not worthy, not loved, not accepted—are they obeying what Christ declares over us? If they don’t, God gives us divine power to demolish them. We can command these thoughts to flee or change so that they obey Him. If our thoughts don’t obey Christ, they have no merit nor power to remain in our minds and hearts.
THE ULTIMATE REJECTION FOR OUR ACCEPTANCE
He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem. Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. (Isaiah 53:3-4)
This is, to me, perhaps the most comforting scripture in the whole Bible. When feelings stubbornly refuse to listen to biblical truth, I flip open to Isaiah 53 and remind myself of the sufferings that Jesus went through so that I can enjoy abundant life. My experiences are mere “light and momentary afflictions” compared to the long suffering of Christ. Through the Word, Jesus comforts me: “Hey, I understand; your pain isn’t foreign to me. And you are not alone.” He declares, “I love you so much that it was all worth it.” He was forsaken by the Father, so that we can run to God in confidence and never be rejected.
Whenever I’m reminded of what He’s gone through for my comfort, I can’t help but be thankful that I am absolutely accepted and cherished by the King of the Universe. Who am I that He is mindful of me, yet He familiarizes himself with my pains and faces the worst form of rejection for my sake. And by that point, the hurts and offenses have no room to reside in my heart and simply shrivel into insignificance.
These scriptures are probably a small percentage of the many truths that God has embedded in the Word to free us from the strongholds of false rejection and loneliness. But hopefully they can kickstart us into prioritizing of the Word above all other ideologies that fight for preeminence in our lives. When we do so, we will then know the truth and the truth will set us free!