Galatians 3:13 says: “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”) 14 that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
How wonderful to know that those who are truly in Christ no longer have to live under the curse of the law (the curses of disobedience, Deut. 28-29), however, I think a lot of times Christians (or some who profess to be Christians) use this as an excuse to think they don’t need to obey God. I know the Lord doesn’t want us to live under a load of guilt and condemnation every time we make a mistake (Romans 8:1-2), but He also doesn’t want us to try to turn the grace of God into a license to sin. Our lack of obedience (especially repetitive, willful disobedience) means that the Lord may not be able to accomplish what He wants to in and through our lives at that particular time. The children of Israel spent 40 years wandering in the desert on what should have been only an 11 day trip. Of course the Lord is long suffering and patient and He’s not going to stop forgiving us, as long as we are truly repentant, but do we want to please the Lord and have His anointing on our lives or just keep on doing our own thing? Jesus said that those who love Him will obey Him and keep His commandments (John 14:15, 23) and Acts 5:32 says that “God has given the Holy Spirit to those who obey Him.”
James 5:16 says…”The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available (dynamic in its working), The Amplified Bible. God uses our prayers to release His power and accomplish His will in the earth. What a privilege it is that He allows us to partner with Him in this way.
In Matthew 17:14-21, A man brought his son, who was an epileptic to the disciples and they were unable to cast out the demon that was responsible for the boy’s condition. Jesus said to His disciples in verse 14…”O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you?” Jesus promptly cast the demon out and when the disciples asked why they were unable to, Jesus said in verses 20-21 “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, “Move from here to there and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.” (NKJ).
Fasting is not easy, if it was, I’m sure more people would do it, but as Jesus said, sometimes it is necessary to bring about deliverance for others, or to break demonic strongholds over a region, etc. I understand that not everyone is at the same level of maturity or called to do the same thing, but Jesus said when the bridegroom (Christ) was taken away, his disciples would fast in those days (Matt. 9:15, NKJ).
I want to share a personal experience to explain how incomplete obedience can affect whether we get deliverance or breakthrough or not. Years ago, when I was going through what I call “spiritual warfare boot-camp”, I started having demonic dreams (usually a clue that I might need to fast) and the normal prayers and rebuking the enemy was not making it stop. I felt the Lord was telling me to fast, so I fasted a full 24 hours (with only water) and continued fasting the next day. My mother called me up and invited my husband and I to come over for supper that night. Instead of checking with the Lord, I said okay and we went and had supper with Mom and Dad. That night I had another demonic dream. When I began praying about it and then opened the Bible, I read a scripture that said if a person made a Nazarite vow (a special time of being set apart to the Lord, Numbers 6:1-21) and then broke it before it was completed, the person should repeat it again, so I sensed the Lord was telling me to start fasting again. This time I went two full days and nights and on the evening of the second day, I had a dream from the Lord where there was a breakthrough.
In the dream, I was outside and I could see there was like a tent revival going on which my husband and I and another couple or two from our church wanted to go to, but I saw really dark clouds and a storm that was between us and where the revival was. The other couple or two I saw in the dream had been going through some trials and opposition from the enemy, similar to what my husband and I had also been going through. I lifted up my hand to rebuke the storm and the enemy spoke to me in my mind and said “you can’t do that”. I said yes I can because Jesus said “whoever has faith in me will do the things I have done and even greater things”. So, I lifted up my hand and yelled “peace be still”. As I did, the storm clouds rolled back and it became completely peaceful and the way was clear for us to go to where the revival was taking place.
Again, when there is strong opposition from the enemy, sometimes it takes prayer and fasting to overcome it and one of the things the Lord has taught me is that when He’s calling me to fast, He knows what is necessary to obtain the victory. I can’t just decide to do what I want, I need to have His leading and direction and see it through to the end if I want to have breakthrough. If we want to have the rewards of obedience, we have to obey. This is not placing ourselves under the law. Obedience is a new testament principle also and it is not opposed to grace. As I said before, fasting is not easy, but when the breakthrough comes and you experience a greater presence of the Lord in your life, it is definitely worth it and just knowing that you’ve obeyed your Heavenly Father and been instrumental in helping bring breakthrough for yourself and others is it’s own reward. God bless you all.