Manschool got off to a great start today.  If you missed it, don’t worry, we will catch you up to speed next week and conclude the opening segment.

Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back.   But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.  The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.  Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: “Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Messiah.  For the accuser of our brothers and sisters, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down.  They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.  Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them!  But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you!  He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short.”         Revelation 12:7-12

We’re going to go after some very tough things this fall.  There are Goliath’s in all of our lives.  For me, it is fear.  Others struggle with rejection, addiction, comfort, self, anger, etc.  These Goliath’s mock us.  They are 9 feet tall and dare us to challenge them.  Their voice has power over our lives.  It is time to break the power of the giant.  It is time for Goliath to fall.

Americans are consumed with fear.  Terrorism, cancer, running out of money, not having friends, children going crazy, violence, etc. but do you know what is our number one fear (according to Chapman University’s “Study of American Fear”)?  By far, almost twice the #2 response, Americans are most afraid of corrupt government officials. Amazing.  We’re more worried about what we’ll do to ourselves than we are terrorists or Kim Jung Un’s nukes.

That’s funny and sad but regardless, we’re consumed with fear as a nation.  We have so much and yet we’re paralyzed with fear.  Why is that?

In part because even though you and I were made for Eden, we don’t live anywhere close to Eden.  This world is a deep, dark swamp full of snakes and alligators.  The air is barely breathable.  This summer as I was processing through a lot of warfare in my life, the worship music from Bethel and my summer journal of scriptures were like oxygen to me.  Crazy days full of stress and worry and cranking Bethel as I was in my truck and drawing upon the words of praise were sometimes all that got me through the day.

Why is that?  Because (back to Revelation 12), you and I live in a world at war.  You may not like talk of Christian warriors or warfare in general.  I get that but you’re naïve to think this world isn’t full of it.  You live opposed every single day as a believer in Christ Jesus in this world.  In fact, He said, “you will be despised because of Me.”  The Scripture says it … “whoa to the earth and the sea because the devil has gone down to you!  He is filled with fury because he knows his time is short.”  Satan is furious, he hates God and he’s coming after God’s children.  Not to get us as much as he is trying to inflict pain on God.

So, be alert.  Understand this.  Without grasping the magnitude of what we’re up against, how can you possibly interpret your life?  If God is love and Jesus is kind, how do you handle a cancer diagnosis, a pregnant daughter, a lost job, friends who take glamorous trips and have ideal lifestyles?  When everything seems stacked up against you and the message from religion is “God is good.  Jesus is love.  Peace on earth”, you’re going to have a hard time reconciling your life and how it isn’t working out so great. When your wife scrolls Instagram and Facebook every night and she watches HGTV and sees beautiful kitchens totally remade, she is assaulted with “Why can’t our life be as good as all my friend’s lives?  Why do all their children seem to turn out so perfect?”

Then you hear that voice that says, “You’re never going to make it through this, this is too big to overcome, you might as well give up, this is where it all falls apart, you’re never going to recover from this, something bad is going to happen to you, this is never going to work out, God has completely forgotten about you, don’t even think that there is a way through this, I wonder what other terrible things might happen, no one cares about you, no ones pulling for you, the worst thing that can happen will happen, God has abandoned you, you are never going to survive this, you should feel afraid, you are heading for disaster, there is no hope..”  What do you do with that voice?  We’ve all heard it.  We hear it all the time.  Can you drown it out, live in denial, medicate it?  No, it’s coming after you.  The enemy is there whispering this assaults over you and your wife and your kids. 

You need to understand that you were made for Eden and find yourself living in a cesspool.  This is his world.  He was cast down here and he’s wreaking havoc on lives constantly.  You are opposed and there is an enemy who is trying to come after you all the time.

Next week, we’re going to talk about what to do with that and what our role is here on Earth.

Please join us.  Some of us are about to experience a major victory and new insights into the role God has for us.

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