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Worship- Unseen resistance

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by Belinda V. Kuhn

As a worship leader, I often extend the invitation to "Come and praise Jesus" and, just

as often, get the reaction of faces staring back at me like animals frozen in my

headlights. What follows next is comparable to waking up a sleepy teenager on

Saturday morning as the music team attempts to stir souls into expressing their

worship.

Why is it so difficult to enter into worship? Why it is difficult to voice our praise, give

thanks or even to focus our attention on God? One of those reasons may be that

worship is an old battleground and that there is unseen resistance to our praising God.

Several years ago, on a summer mission outreach in Prague, Czech Republic, this

resistance became very visible…

Our team’s objective was clear: to lift up the name of Jesus in the city. Each

day we asked God to show us how we could exalt His name. So it was that one

afternoon all nineteen of us zigzagged through the city streets, praying and singing

softly.

As I led our convoy, flanked by the four young children in our team, I suddenly saw a

very dark character ahead: an artist who painted devil paintings. I was concerned for

our kids and kept my eye on him as we approached. While we were still out of earshot

I suddenly saw a most amazing display - the man looked towards us and then bowed,

covering his eyes and ears until we passed by! What I saw and will never forget was a

visible demonstration of what was taking place in the unseen spiritual realm – the

forces of darkness in his soul were bowing before the presence of Jesus!

Since that day I have sought to gain a greater understanding of the power of our

worship through studying the Scriptures.

In the Bible we can read about the Ark of the Covenant as an visible example of what is

actually taking place in the heavenly realms, or the unseen world (Hebrews 8:5; 9:23,

24). On top of the Ark (Hebrews 9:5), the presence of Almighty God is encircled by

special angels called “cherubim” (Exodus 25:22) whose purpose it was to worship God

and to lead the heavenly host in worship. (Rev.4: 6-11)

One of these cherubim ‘worship leaders’ was Lucifer. (Isa.14:12-14; Ezek 28:12-19).

Being so close to God’s glory night and day, Lucifer made a fateful decision when pride

rose in his heart - he wanted to be worshipped and was able to persuade at least onethird

of the angels into idolatry (Rev.12:4). Consequently, the other two-thirds of all

created angels, led by Michael the archangel, threw Lucifer and his minions out of

heaven (Rev.12:9). Now there were thousands upon thousands of fallen angels exiled

to earth, committed to worship Satan, and Satan planned his revenge.

In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve were created to be in loving relationship with

God and to worship Him (Genesis 1:26, 27). God gave them a free will, so they could

freely choose to obey and love Him. This is the prototype of God's design for love –

unconditionally giving your heart to another.

God also delegated some of His authority to Adam & Eve to rule the earth He had

created for them. As long as they lived in right relationship with Him, they remained

under His protection.

Satan’s diabolical plan was to tempt Adam and Eve into disobeying God and in that

way he would obtain a legal right to gain some of their God-given authority and even, if

possible, their allegiance. In Genesis three, we read the tragic story of how Adam and

Eve disobeyed God and came into Satan's clutches. Sin entered the heart of man

and caused a separation in his relationship with God.

Much as we like to think that we could have passed that same test, our daily lives

prove otherwise. The devil is constantly enticing us to choose against God by being

selfish and serving his purposes. We cannot worship both, as the angels found out

long ago. Our choice to love and obey God is at the core of worshipping Him.

Knowing all this, we can clearly see what unseen forces are truly at work when we

intend to express love and praise to God. The enemy is resisting us, trying to silence us

or make us apathetic. Our choice to worship God, to lift up our voice and our hands

and whatever else we need to in expressions of love will defeat Satan's forces in our

lives… and often in the lives of those around us.

Praising God is the act that silences the powers of darkness around us, because we

bow to the truth that Jesus is Lord!

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