Who is the accuser?
Satan is the accuser. How does he work? Through people. Which people? Predominantly the people of the church. Let’s be sure we are not his tool.
The church is in perilous times. The church is in challenging times. The Church as a body of believers has never had such opportunity for growth and never been so vulnerable to attack — because the two necessarily go hand-in-hand.
God is sifting
Are we going to grow in person and congregation, making way for new believers in Yeshua Jesus? OR are we going to implode from within?
GOD is sifting the wheat from the chaff. Each of us is both: wheat and chaff as we are both flesh and spirit. Sanctification (1Corinthians 1:30) is the process of growth from being led by our own thoughts and intents to being led of the Spirit’s. Also, just as we are one body in Christ, so the congregation — local and international — is being separated or sifted: the wheat from the chaff.
Individuals and Congregations
How is GOD separating the wheat from the chaff? He allows the accuser to operate; how we respond will expose our chaff or our wheat. Our individual and corporate response to the accuser’s meddling reveals what in us is either godly or not. Then we choose whom we will serve… We can recognise our corruption and repent or we can allow it to take over and accuse.
Self-righteousness v Righteousness
Who is the accuser? Satan. He is prowling around, seeking whom he may devour. (1Peter 5:8) How does he devour? Through accusation. If you are accusing, are you not his handmade?
I have discovered, through my own journey of failed good intentions, that there is a very fine line between what is righteous in GOD’s eyes and what is purely righteous in my own; the latter is self-righteousness. Self-righteousness wreaks havoc in its self-imposed exercise of judgement and condemnation. It sees evil in everyone but itself, and looks to spiritualise actions and motives of others. It is key in Jesus’ proverbial: ‘seeing the log in the other’s eye rather than spotting the plank in his/her own.’
I’m being blunt because I’m seeing the accuser operate. I’m seeing him infiltrate churches and individuals. I’m seeing him devouring congregates and congregations by putting thoughts into peoples’ hearts and minds — good people, sincere believers — who are feeling justified to attack others (usually covertly rather than directly because the devil is, after all, a coward). When accusations are behind backs and behind doors, you can be sure the enemy is at hand.
What is to be done to combat the accuser
First, please note I am grossly over-simplifying matters for the purpose of this short post. The devil devours in many ways and accusation is just one of them. But accusation is the epitome of condemnation and remember,
“There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8) Therefore, if one is condemning, one is not operating in the spirit of love or Christ.
Remember, you shall be known for your fruits:) The fruit of the Holy Spirit is love, joy, peace, goodness, kindness, gentleness, patience, faithfulness and self control. (Galatians 5:22)
Open discourse doesn’t allow the enemy to get into congregations. Face-to-face confrontation, however difficult, is the (messy) way to avoid gossip and back-biting. But most of all, love, trust and mutual respect are keys to ensuring godly relationship persists and the enemy does not get a foothold.
Jezebel was Ahab’s self-serving wife (read 1 Kings 16 – 21 for the full story), the sort of person from whom the character of Shakespeare’s Lady Macbeth might have been derived.
Today we have teaching about the Jezebel spirit of control that operates through other people. I’ve had that spirit and I’ve seen it in operation through others. Jezebel, in the spiritual sense, is a sense of manipulation and control that seeks to “get its own way at any cost”. BUT it is all-too-easily given as a label to anyone who doesn’t agree with the accuser (which tells me it’s likely operating more in the accuser than in the ‘accusee’).
We need to remember Christ died and saved the believer. If one is truly demonised by any spirit (and theologically, I recognise there are many who will weigh in on the debate as to whether a believer can or cannot be possessed by anything ungodly) he or she needs love, sound teaching, deliverance and more love. Condemnation, accusation, and gossip are not on that list of “how to help a person oppressed by demons”.
Does anyone really believe a sister or brother in Christ deserves to be hurled onto the street and devoured by dogs as Jezebel was as GOD’s response to her evil intent? Does anyone really believe someone who declares love for Jesus is motivated to destroy anyone or anything that gets in his or her way? Because that is was the accusation implies.
Beware a spirit of accusation
Rather, I think we need to be wary of any accusation that we may carry. We are responsible for our hearts and out of our heart speaks truth or lies. Accusing someone else of lying, deceit, or evil intent is a very dangerous thing to do. Sadly I’ve seen it done all-too-quickly and all-too-easily. Yes, many do so out of fear of the power of that evil spirit, and in that sense, exposure of it is intended for good. But fear is also a tool of the enemy, the remedy for which is GOD’s “perfect love [which] casts out fear. (1John 4:18)
I am not condemning
I am not condemning anyone through the writing of this post. I am warning. If your heart is convicted through the reading of this post, we both can praise GOD. For through conviction comes repentance. And after repentance, comes the reparation: the apology to the falsely accused and their forgiveness in return.
Through conviction, apology, and forgiveness, the enemy is thwarted and the real accuser, the real Jezebel, the real evil is thwarted.
The enemy must not be given a foothold in our hearts, even if our hearts are well-intended. Please GOD expose this accuser of falsehoods in our own hearts and teach us to love one another well, by your gracious spirit.