By Chad Napier, Crosswalk.com
Our family, community, nation, and world are all suffering from the great difficulties caused by strongholds. Many of these fleshly addictive forces have been intensified because of the uncertainty and distress created by disasters and disease.
These strongholds are present in our lives because we seek comfort, success, and peace through the perceived remedy of worldly attainments and desires. The more we attempt to lessen the draw of addictions by our own means and power, the more the bondage attaches to our soul...creating a never-ending search for the “magic pill” and “home remedy.”
The believer, however, realizes the only true release of Satan’s strongholds is found in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
He who was able to confront and conquer the greatest stronghold of death is fully able to heal our addictive desires. These “holds” may be an abusive relationship, prescription medication, alcohol, food, pornography, or any host of addictions.
Whatever our drawing poison may be, we have a mediator who is ready to hear our cry and petition for a touch from our Heavenly Father.
Here are five powerful prayers to God for release from strongholds:
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1. A Prayer for Alertness
We must be dedicated in prayer for the strength to “be alert and of sober mind” as instructed in 1 Peter 5:8. The believer has an enemy in the devil who “prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”
Alertness allows us to fully acknowledge the presence of a stronghold. It is often easy in our busy lives to become “spiritually distracted” and allow the world to skew our perspective.
Our hectic schedules cloud and disrupt our perfect communion with our church and prayer life. A prayer of alertness will give us discernment and an ability to distinguish the correct paths from the hand of our Savior.
Heavenly Father, I ask you to give me the power of spiritual discernment to be enlightened of all the snares of the world which attempt to cloud my spiritual vision and darken the eyes of my understanding of your ways.
I acknowledge your ways and your path is holy. The ways of the world attempt to broaden your narrow path unto distraction. I pray for a heightened spiritual alertness and a sobering mind to avoid the snares of our enemy. Amen.
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2. A Prayer to Deflect Satan’s Schemes
In James 4:7, we are promised that the devil will flee from us if we “submit [ourselves] to God and resist him.” Resisting involves placing ourselves in the best possible position to serve Christ and avoiding any places or positions containing unnecessary sinful temptations.
The places and situations in which we put ourselves are often infected with strongholds. We regularly and voluntarily place ourselves in situations allowing Satan’s strongholds to birth and bind our circumstances. For example, church leaders are often asked whether the believer should totally abstain from alcohol or whether an occasional drink is acceptable. Every believer has certain weaknesses and strengths. However, if we place ourselves in a position of vulnerability with such a dangerous ingredient, we are inviting and giving the devil an advantage over us.
By resisting and deflecting the devil, we are giving ourselves a home-field advantage.
Heavenly Father, I wholly submit myself to you and your perfect plan for my life. I ask for you to guide my path and to take control of my steps wherein I can resist temptation and the wiles of the devil.
I pray for the courage to avoid the acceptability of the places and paths prescribed and allowed by the world. I pray for the greater awareness of your higher calling for my life knowing that full submission to your will is required for total effectiveness of resisting our enemy and conquering the strongholds in my life. Amen.
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3. A Prayer to Abide in Spirit
Paul taught the church in Ephesians 6:18 to “pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests...always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” This instruction was imperative for both the Christian personally, but also communally as a whole.
These “holds” become stronger and more entrenched in our life when the behavior is deemed acceptable by our family or community. By abiding in the spirit, we desire what our Savior desires—instead of consuming what the world offers.
Our prayer to release strongholds, either for our brethren or ourselves personally, must be done so regularly while abiding in the Spirit. The Spirit leads and guides the content and order of our prayer.
John 16:13 informs us that “when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.” In Romans 8:26, Paul tells us that “the Spirit helps us in our weakness” because “we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with our groanings too deep for words.”
Our strongholds are our weaknesses, but his Spirit will lead and guide us into all truth. His intercession breaks loose the chains of any worldly shackle.
Father God, I seek your presence and your face as I abide in the Holy Spirit wherever I may go and whatever circumstance may beset my path...whether it is something positive or negative in my own understanding.
I pray, not only for myself, but also my brothers and sisters in Christ, to be strengthened by your word and your presence. Whatever may beset us, I know you are all-powerful and all-capable, whether the stronghold is spiritual or physical. Amen.
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4. A Prayer to Be Scripturally-Versed
The Word of God promises victory in any trial or stronghold by the devil. Hebrews 2:14-15 contains the source or origin of all of our victories through Christ. We should forever rejoice and take to remembrance that “since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery.”
Surely if our Savior was able to conquer all sin by his death and resurrection after being tempted and tried in all the ways of man, He is able to release the strongholds that we face in our life.
Man’s biggest fear and stronghold is that dread of death. However, Jesus Christ, our Redeemer and Savior, is victorious over this stronghold, which is insurmountable by man’s power. He tells us in Relevation 1:18 that “I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades.”
No matter what addiction or circumstance that may seemingly have a grasp onto our being, we have a Savior who is willing and able. He has the keys for us to declare freedom from any of these bondages.
Dear God, I pray in your son’s precious name that I have a desire to read and apply your Word to my heart and daily path. I humbly request your words be etched into my mind and memory as I read and study them.
I pray that in times of indecision and temptation that I will be able to recollect these great promises and apply them to my circumstance. I realize our enemy will attempt to distort your word, but I pray for the ability to recite the precious verses, which give me the victory no matter the lure from the world.
I rejoice today because of my victory, but give testimony of your faithfulness in the past and know you will be with me going forward.
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5. A Prayer to Plead the Blood of Christ’s Release from Sin
The most powerful stronghold of man is the prison chamber caused by sin. However, the believer has the remedy of the blood of Christ applied to his or heart. Paul in Galatians 5:1 outlined that “for freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.”
The gospel song “Still The Blood” written by Ray Eller contains a verse about “those who rely on what works they’ve done, and there are those who count on the times they’ve prayed through. But when the battles over, and the last song has been sung, I got to my Father, yes I go to my Father, the blood of His precious Son.”
The devices, works, and inventions of man can do nothing to release any of the devil’s strongholds. In Revelations 12:11 we read about the Saints who “have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony.”
It always was and will always be the shed blood of Jesus that gives us the greatest release of the most powerful stronghold—the yoke of sin.
Heavenly Father, I stand in your midst and plead the blood of your precious son Jesus Christ. I have the utmost confidence in the blood which was applied to my heart releasing me from the strongholds of sin on my soul.
I know the blood that was shed is not dry and the same flowing blood has the power to release me today in my circumstance and weakness.
I pray for a strengthening each day from the power of this blood and presence of the Holy Spirit.
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