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Prayer And Warfare 
Dr. Allen M. Barber
July 26, 2010

Part 2 of the Watchman Nee Series

Ephesians 6:10-18 NKJV

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 

14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints...

If you have not read part 1 of this series, please do so now as it lays the foundation for the whole series, particularly since it has been an extended period since I wrote Part 1. I apologize for the lengthy hiatus, but it has been a busy summer.

In Part 1 we learned that unless we pray in the Holy Spirit and with our spirit, our prayers are meaningless before the throne of God. All prayer must be spiritual or it is not true prayer. While much prayer is intellectual (of the mind) and void of the Spirit, nevertheless we must also learn to pray with our minds, that is, our renewed minds. In prayer it is mandatory that we yield our thinking apparatus (our minds) to the Holy Spirit's guidance and control because Satan operates largely in the mind. Go back and read Genesis 3 and notice that Satan's appeal to Eve was in the area of her mind, that is, the devil placed doubt in her mind that God lied to her and was in fact keeping her from being a "god" herself. He is doing the very same thing today in New Age religion and countless souls are buying into the lie that humankind are actually "little gods" and just need to develop their "god consciousness." No, man is a sinner by birth and choice and must trust God that His verdict of the human race is the right one - "Except you repent and believe the gospel you will all likewise perish." (Luke 13:5).

Our minds must be totally surrendered to the will of God in prayer and in all spiritual life for as mentioned the fallen mind is Satan's playground. Why do you think there is so much mental illness today?  Demons via habitual sin, transference, drugs and false doctrine have invaded the minds of many lost souls and carnal believers causing MPD (multiple personality disorders) and a host of other mental sicknesses. I know, for I have not only counseled many Christians and lost people who had demons in the mind, but I personally experienced a demonic attack in the area of my mind via transference when I was a young child. It was not until many years later that God led me to an anointed man of God who has an international counseling ministry that discovered the invasion as well as the demons occupying that territory. After a three day session, I was completely delivered of the demonic strongholds (that was 11 years ago) that had tormented me for years. Because I was a Minister of God, I was afraid to seek help and lived with it thinking I could overcome it myself, but to no avail. Many of Dr. Allbright's counselee's are ministers. Satan particularly attacks men of God who are a threat to his darkened kingdom and either tries to destroy them or render them useless.

If you have not read Dr. Allbright's book, Liberating The Bruised, I highly recommend it especially if you are having problems controlling your thought life. You can order the book at www.liberating-the-bruised.com.

While the reborn spirit is the area where God places spiritual truth, the renewed mind is the faculty of understanding. The spirit knows and the mind understands. Many Christians make the mistake of assuming spiritual knowledge is intellectual - of the mind; therefore, they often end up with a head full of opinions and man's wisdom that is not based on the truths of Scripture. They lack revelation knowledge in the spirit. The renewed mind that has been trained in the Word of God is able to understand what God by the Holy Spirit has deposited in their spirits - revelation knowledge. Thus the mind and the spirit work together in carrying out the will of God and that is true concerning prayer - especially prayer. A genuine born-again believerl receives in his spirit what he needs to pray about (this is called "spirit burden") and his renewed mind understands what he has received. "The spirit accepts the burden of prayer" while the mind converts the burden to prayer-words. Watchman Nee says, "Only in this way is the prayer of a believer perfected."

Countless believers pray whatever comes into their minds without having any revelation in their spirits. The problem with that is the believer becomes the origin of his or her prayers and not God. True prayer must originate from the throne of God. The reason the disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray was they noticed His prayers were much different than theirs. What was the difference?  Jesus said that He did nothing unless His Father told Him. Jesus communed with the Father in prayer, then spoke and acted upon the spiritual knowledge He was given. He did nothing of Himself. All his praying and doing originated with His Father's throne. That is what made His prayers different from all prayers the disciples prayed as well as all men. It should be true of believers who have the Holy Spirit for He is the source of our prayers or should be:

Romans 8:26-27 NKJV

26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

This passage has nothing to do with so-called tongues, which is evidenced by the phrase - "groanings, which cannot be uttered" [in words] rather it implies the Holy Spirit conveys to the Father what the believer is trying to express in human language but cannot find the right words. Note: if what we are praying cannot be uttered by the tongue to form words, then neither can it be so-called tongue speech. The Holy Spirit knows what is in our spirits and minds, that is, what is revelation knowledge according to the will of God and makes intercession for the saint who is laboring with prayer burden. Actually, the pronouns in this passage are in the plural tense and in the context of Romans 8, the corporate Church is in view not the individual saint; therefore, this is corporate prayer burden or the prayer of the Body of Christ praying in unison and harmony concerning the will of God. It is the kind of prayer that resulted in Peter getting out of prison by supernatural intervention - the saints were praying for his release and the angel of the Lord appeared to Peter, removed his shackles and unlocked the doors. When Peter came to the house where the saints were praying, he knocked on the door and they almost did not let him in because they didn't believe it was him. It appears there was some doubt mixed in with their prayer. When the corporate Church is in harmony of wills and praying according to the will of God great and wonderful even miraculous things take place.

"Man's spirit and prayer are inseparable" as well as our minds and spirit. Both must be yielded to God in order to pray the highest kind of prayer. A confused carnal mind full of the world and a defiled spirit will render our prayer life useless. The human intellect is a great gift from God, but unless it becomes an instrument of the Holy Spirit and controlled by our own spirit, it becomes the source of our knowledge, which is human wisdom. God refers to human wisdom in I Corinthians 1:20 as "foolish."

Watchman Nee has a chapter in his book, The Spiritual Man, entitled, "The Principle Of The Mind Aiding The Spirit." It is truth you won't hear taught in most evangelical Churches yet it is essential in knowing how the mind acts with our spirit to produce spiritual prayers.

What is the condition of your mind? Is it confused 24/7? Are you thoughts pure or are they unclean and full of lust? What do you watch on TV and what kind of movies do you attend?  Don't expect your mind to cooperate with your spirit in prayer if you consistently attend filthy movies (the ones filled with vulgar language, nudity and sex) or watch sensual programs on TV.  What do you read?  Do you read spicy romance novels that create lustful thoughts or how about the internet? Do you view porn (Yes, Christians are tempted to view porn on the internet and many do)?  No true born-again believer should indulge in grazing like a cow on porn all day. It will warp your mind and do irreparable harm to your spirit. It will also invite the chastening of God for He does not want His people involved with the filth of the world.

We should pray, "O, Lord give me a clean heart and a pure mind that I may know your will in everything." Paul tells us in Romans 12:2 that we are to be transformed by the renewal of our minds:

Romans 12:2 NKJV

2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

I will have more to say in the next article on the mind and the spirit in spiritual warfare praying.

The Lord bless you.