Discernment Disarms the Enemy

Posted: September 18, 2013 in Christianity, faith, God, Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

My friend comes over to the house to visit for the first time.  Oh Lord here we go again.  My grandmother, who has no interest in trying to discreetly cover her natural dislike for the person tells me after they leave:  “Eeh eeh. Mi nuh like ar. Mi feel ar inna mi chest.” Translation:  No, no.  I don’t like her.  I feel her in my chest.  And sure enough she was always right. If my grandmother, God bless her soul, tells you she feels somebody inna di chest, pay attention. Her radar was never wrong.  What I know now, that I didn’t know back then was that my grandmother had a keen gift of discernment.  As I mentioned before, we are in this ongoing spiritual war.  Where the Enemy is relentless and the rules don’t always seem fair.  The bible says that the “weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds“(2 Cor 4:6)—meaning you can’t use natural weapons  to fight a spiritual war. You have to use supernatural weapons.  A few posts ago, you saw how the power of praise and worship can totally annihilate the devil.  Today let’s talk about that invaluable tool called discernment.

What is discernment?

Discernment is :

1) The act or process of exhibiting keen insight and good judgment (http://www.thefreedictionary.com/discernment)

2) (in Christian contexts) perception in the absence of judgment with a view to obtaining spiritual direction and understanding (http://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/discernment)

3) : the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/discernment)

Discernment is to discover

I love how one source puts it.  In its simplest definition, discernment is nothing more than the ability to decide between truth and error, right and wrong (http://www.gty.org/Resources/Questions/QA1382)).  It is such a vital weapon in spiritual warfare, because it ultimately leads to the truth. It is wisdom and insight to perceive something beyond the surface.  Something not readily apparent or obvious at first glance. It can be a concept, a situation and more importantly people.  Even for those who are not Christian, it seems God has gifted most everyone with some natural sense of discernment.  I am sure at one time or another you may have had a bad feeling about going a particular place or even when confronted with a particular situation.  One example I came across for instance would be a car salesman trying to sell you a seemingly good car deal, but despite how great it sounds you have a gut feeling that something isn’t right.  You can’t shake that feeling that it’s a scam, a sham, a rip-off.  Your intuition for the not so obvious lie is discernment.

Discernment can be sharpened by knowledge gained from past experiences or through study of insightful resources like the bible, textbooks, articles, etc. Let’s say for example your initial encounter with a coworker leaves you feeling uneasy for no apparent reason. The conversation was pleasant enough but in plain terms, you know something ain’t right. With time you notice mood swings, paranoia and her need to always be in control.  The initial meeting—you discern something is wrong although you can’t say specifically what. But based on subtle characteristics, your prior experience with people with similar behavior patterns and previous knowledge from school and reading, you have further discerned that she has bipolar disease.  So you can see discernment brings truth on a very basic or much deeper levels.  It is something that takes on many dimensions.

Discernment Exposes Demons

Different from natural discernment above, the bible speaks of the spiritual gift of “discerning of spirits” (1 Cor. 12:10).  That is literally a gift given by God, through the power of the Holy Spirit to specifically discern spirits of other people.   Discerning of spirits is  one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, meaning this can only be done by God’s Holy Spirit.  It is not something you earn or learn.   God gives this gift to anyone and at anytime he chooses, although people  seem to possess it in different degrees. To make an assessment, people with this gift don’t even have to hear the other  person speak.  The Holy Spirit in them will automatically recognize the beauty of the Holy Spirit in someone else or the not so pleasant presence of demonic spirits in/around other individuals.  There is no stronger spiritual radar than the Holy Spirit.

Discernment Disrupts and Disarms the enemy

You can imagine how the devil is not a fan of discernment.  Remember Satan is the father of lies and deception is one of his main modes of attack against us.  Giving the appearance of truth and good, to ensnare us and lead us to destruction. It is discernment that helps to discriminate between genuine folks and counterfeits, good intentions and bad intentions, real or fraud.  Recognizing the lie of the enemy, especially at the onset can save a lot of headache, heartache and ultimately frustrate the devastation the devil tries to bring to our lives.

Discernment is not unfair discrimination

Now be careful.  Notice the second definition says it is perception in the absence of judgment (condemnation or irrational disapproval).  I heard a preacher once say a lot of people who claim to be using discernment are really just wrongly judging other people. In other words, discernment is not seeing someone in shabby clothes and from their appearance drawing the conclusion that they are a thief. Or seeing a woman in a tight, short dress and from that you “discern” that she is loose or lives a sexually immoral life. That would be judging based on appearance only and not based on the leading of the Spirit and taking all factors into account.  The bible encourages us, “Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment (John 7:24, ESV). True discernment is not prejudiced.

Discernment Delineates God’s voice 

When God speaks in most cases it’s not really an audible voice. He may speak through your thoughts, a feeling or idea he puts in your spirit, other people, etc.   And with the conflict of our own thoughts and the devil constantly trying to send messages to confound us, discernment is invaluable in distinguishing  God’s voice from every competing voice.  The bible warns us, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world”( 1 John 4:1, ESV).   Tap into discernment to expose every lie of the enemy and get complete clarity regarding God’s guidance, direction and will for your life.

Discernment is one of those things that gets sharper with practice (Hebrews 5:14)  Are you assessing every situation, every  interaction and every voice you encounter with Godly discernment? Remember discernment brings devastation and destruction to the enemy.  Determined to be victorious……and yet still I rise

With peace and blessings may you continue to rise always,

stillirise323

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