“The Fortified Place”
by Pastor Alli Munsey
March 30, 2019
The Philistines were told that David had been made king of Israel, so their army set out to capture him. When David heard of it, he went down to a fortified place. The Philistines arrived at Rephaim Valley and occupied it. David asked the LORD, “Shall I attack the Philistines? Will you give me the victory?”
“Yes, attack!” the LORD answered. “I will give you the victory!”
So David went to Baal Perazim and there he defeated the Philistines. He said, “The LORD has broken through my enemies like a flood.” And so that place is called Baal Perazim.
2 Samuel 5:17-20 (The Good News)
David sought the Lord in a fortified place, and the place where he sought the Lord is where he saw the breakthrough. Do you have a fortified place? A fortified place is a place of prayer where you can seek God. God broke through David’s enemies and gave him victory.
There are things that only the spiritual can break through. Jesus, when he was facing the cross didn't want to do what he knew he had to do. He said, “Nevertheless, not my will, but your will be done,” (Luke 22:42).
There are some things that only God can do in our lives, and we will never walk in those things until we align our will with God's. Salvation is a free gift, but spiritual growth is optional. There are things we have to do in order to see spiritual growth in our lives.
In Genesis 3:1-5, the serpent asked Eve, “did God really say...?” Eve was created and put into a perfect place. She didn't have to fight through sin, and yet Satan uses the same tactic on Eve as he does on Jesus and on us.
The enemy is bound in chains. He wants to give you the chains that you were never meant to carry. He comes by challenging the word of God -- “did God really say?” He challenges God's character -- that God doesn't want us to have everything. The enemy seeks to take our focus off of all the good things in our life and present us with the one thing we don't have.
If we're not careful, we will doubt God's goodness and doubt God's word -- then the enemy has us exactly where he wants us. If the well is tainted the water is poisoned--meaning, if we believe that God is withholding something good from us on purpose, then we won't appreciate or recognize his blessings in our lives.
So how do we combat the attacks of the enemy?
1. The Word of God:
We can combat the attack of the enemy with the word of God. Jesus models this when he is tempted by Satan in the dessert. When we have scripture memorized and hidden in our hearts, we can throw it back at the enemy when he tries to give us his chains. Then we exchange the chains of the enemy for the power of God. For every struggle that we face, there's a scripture that combats it.
2. Fasting & Prayer:
Fasting and prayer are also disciplines that we can take on to combat the enemy. Matthew 5 says, “when you fast,...” meaning that fasting and prayer should be a part of our spiritual lives. Fasting releases something in our lives in the supernatural that the natural could never achieve. Fasting is not so much about crucifying the flesh but making room for the spirit to expand. When we make room for the spiritual, God has our attention, and he can give us everything that we need.
In Exodus 17:12, we learn that as long as Moses’ hands were up, the Israelites could take ground; when his hands were down, the enemy could take ground. This shows us that there is a physical sacrifice required for spiritual victory.
There is a fight going on for your attention, for your soul. When we fast and pray, we make room for God in our lives. In Daniel 9, Daniel was given a vision that he didn't understand, so he fasted and prayed. In Daniel 10:12-14, we learn that through prayer and fasting, Daniel experienced a spiritual breakthrough. There was a spiritual darkness blocking the angel from bringing his answer, but the prayer and fasting brought the breakthrough.
God can do more in the spiritual than any self-help book or podcast, but we have to humble ourselves in prayer and fasting. If we find ourselves stuck, maybe it's the time to make some sacrifices in the physical so that we can see the breakthrough in the spiritual.
We don't have to wait until we're in a crisis to pray to God and receive breakthrough. When we read the word of God, the word of God reads us. With Easter coming up, it's the perfect time to set apart time in our schedule to seek God in fasting and prayer and make room for God to move in our lives.
Are there any areas of your life where you are feeling stuck and in need of a spiritual breakthrough?
How can you utilize the Word of God to combat the enemy in the areas where you’re feeling stuck?
How do you feel led to pray and fast to seek breakthrough in the areas where you want to see spiritual growth?
What kind of physical sacrifices or adjustments do you feel called to make for the purpose of spiritual growth in this season leading up to Easter?