“And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church [Gr. ekklesia], and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.” (Matthew 16:18 NKJV

Recently, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to why more believers aren’t successful financially and in business. Since I work every day with business owners on growing their businesses, I’m constantly confronted with this subject. And the longer I live, the more convinced I am that business and financial success is almost entirely internal. By that I mean that our mindsets and our thinking control our outcomes.

One pattern of thinking that we seem to have adopted in the Church world today is that of standing on the promises of God and using the power available to us to defend ourselves from the onslaught of the enemy. And let me be the first to say that I believe in Psalm 91 for protection. I stand on it for myself, my wife, my daughter, our home, etc. Countless times in my life, I’ve witnessed supernatural protection from threats — everything from auto accidents to natural disasters.

But I believe that all this focus on protecting us from the enemy has caused us to lose sight of the point: we’re supposed to be plundering him and taking territory… not going on the defensive and desperately hoping to keep what we’ve got.

Jesus made this point clearly in Matthew 16 (quoted above). He told Peter that He (Jesus) was building his ekklesia (governing assembly) and the gates of Hell would not prevail against it. In other words, Jesus was establishing new government — outside the realm of the existing government structures — and Satan and his cohorts were going on the defensive.

On my recent trip to Haiti, I observed first-hand the effects of the dominion of the enemy. Sickness, poverty, and death are the result of the government of Satan. To a certain extent, this includes the natural human government, but far more importantly, it is the spiritual environment of the land.

Taxis to Hell—and Back—Into the Jaws of Death, Robert F. Sargent / United States Coast Guard (Public Domain)

Taxis to Hell—and Back—Into the Jaws of Death, Robert F. Sargent / United States Coast Guard (Public Domain)

We — as believers — have been delivered out of the dominion of darkness and conveyed into the Kingdom (Colossians 1:13). Jesus called us to bring His government and dominion every where we go (Matthew 28:18-20). This isn’t a matter of defending ourselves… it means we’re going on the offensive.

Imagine what would happen to an NFL football team that spent all of its energies working on defense… if they eliminated the offensive coordinator and never practiced playing offense — only defense. They might be difficult to score against, but they would never win any games.

This, my friend, is what we’ve done in the Church. We’ve trained everybody to cower in the corner and try to protect themselves and their families from the influence of the world. We’ve piled the salt into the saltshaker and hidden the lamp. But this isn’t the plan of God for us. His plan is that we take territory from the enemy and gain influence so that His government can increase. And His power is there for you today to do it.

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