Peaceful protests have turned violent. In almost every state protestors have been hurt, businesses torched and police pelted with bottles and bricks. It’s hard to believe this is America.
What is this and how do we pray?
This isn’t about black vs. white, Democrat vs Republican, rich vs poor. It is a spirit which has been unleashed to create chaos.
What do we do when a spirit of suspicion has been unleashed?
It is essential that we are spiritually discerning in this hour. The Enemy is doing everything in his power to cause division, strife, rage, pain and destruction. Let’s not join him.
I am reminded of a teaching by Pastor Bill Johnson of Bethel Church in Redding, California who exposes what we are experiencing in our nation and around the world:
“Both the political spirit and religious spirit are vying for your affections and whenever there is influence from either of those two realms the word of the Lord becomes diluted and distorted. The Lord is wanting a clear word—a precise, empowering word, to come to the cities and nations of the world.”
“We are being lied to every day of our life. If you have anything to do in media you are being fed a bill of goods. But very little of it is intentional deception. Most of it is agenda driven.”
“When you are driven by an agenda that is wrong, you re-interpret circumstances incorrectly.”
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Johnson goes on to share a story about how years ago, a satanist was converted. Then the media learned the pastor was giving the man a fair amount of money every month. The news organization assumed it was to keep the story alive. So they did a big expose. They reported the ex-satanist lived in a condo, overlooking a golf course and drove a Lincoln Continental.
“All those things were true, but they weren’t true at all,” Johnson explained.
“They were true in that the pastor was giving him a lot of money, but it was to pay for the counseling he needed because of the abusive environment in which he had grown up. The condo overlooking the golf course was actually an apartment and the golf course was a miniature-golf course. The Lincoln Continental was an old Lincoln covered in bumper stickers.”
It was true, but it wasn’t.
“Here’s what happens,” Johnson finished. (And this is the important take away) “Both the religious spirit and political spirit want to impart the gift of suspicion because that re-interprets circumstances and causes a spirit of offense to rise up that mirrors the prophetic anointing.”
“It’s a counterfeit prophetic anointing. When you rise in a spirit of offense, you have the same burning conviction and sense that something needs to be done, something needs to be said, but not recognizing the origin of the information is actually the spirit of deception.”
“The gift of suspicion gets imparted.”
“You can hear information and be righteously stirred up not realizing you were given wrong information even though your conviction is correct.”
“And whatever you misdiagnose you will mistreat.”
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This is where we find ourselves. We have been lied to by the media whether intentionally or not, and we no longer trust what we read or hear anywhere.
For too long we have listened to agenda driven information meant to illicit a knee-jerk response–a demand for justice. But if the agenda-driven information is only partial truth or erroneous, once believed it feels like righteous indignation, but can be suspicion and deception.
And the nature of deception is we are the ones deceived, but can’t see it. We then become a tool for the Enemy’s use.
We are there now. The spirit of suspicion has been unleashed.
Each one of us has only partial truth regarding the tragedy of George Floyd’s death—or any news story for that matter. This has been used against us.
We have a choice. We can either watch as our country is burned, looted and destroyed as the Enemy laughs.
Or we can repent, kneel down in humility, like the police officers in Miami as the protestors approached them…and pray together for reconciliation, healing, change and the much-needed revival which is our only hope for true transformation.
We are being played. There is an agenda across the world to divide by any means possible–skin color, political affiliation, religious belief, economic or educational status, etc. Whatever it takes, division is the goal.
And when we accept the gift of suspicion it brings a package of offense.
Discernment is then lost and deception becomes our lens.
The tragic death of George Floyd demands justice. But what has followed is no longer about justice, but about creating chaos and further division.
This is a call to be spiritually discerning to what we see and hear. We need to ask questions and pray rather than blindly accept all, or respond in knee-jerk reactions. Neither will achieve a positive or godly result.
How do we become more spiritually discerning?
- Pay attention.
As we read or listen to a news story, what words are being used? Is the article simply telling us how to feel? Is there an intent meant to create a reaction? If it incites rage that is an indicator.
- Ask Questions.
Whether we are listening to a sermon or a news story, we need to do our own research to confirm that what we have heard is true. With the news that can be a challenge as truth is sometimes hidden and lies sometimes called truth. How can we know the truth? Pray. Ask the Holy Spirit. Search news sources in many areas and learn what both sides are saying. Just because the majority are saying something, doesn’t make it true.
- Refuse Offense.
Once we take offense, we have opened the door to deception. You may have the right to be offended, but don’t. Forgive. It may feel like “righteous indignation,” but is it? Or is it simply a spirit of suspicion prompting us to take up offense?
Years ago when my husband and I were unjustly accused over an issue. Once the truth was brought out into the open, we were completely vindicated. However, there was one couple in particular, who had believed the lie and been outspoken in their condemnation of us. Once they were told by leadership that what they had believed was untrue, the wife replied, “Well how could we have known?”
That’s a great question and the answer is, “By the fruit.” Remember No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit (Luke 6:43).
But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come (Jn 16:13).
Lord, we ask that you would make us a spiritually discerning people. If we have allowed a spirit of offense into our hearts, which has opened the door to deception, we repent and ask that you would open our eyes to the truth that we are missing. Help us to lay aside any prejudice or misinformation.
If you have additional insight or encounters with this spirit or with these riots. Please comment and let us know.