GOD IS SEEKING PEOPLE TO PARTNER WITH HIM
God has always been on the lookout for people to partner with Him. The whole of the Bible from Genesis down to Revelation is about God seeking people to partner with Him. It is about God seeking:
Partners to manage His resources – This was why when God created man in Genesis 1:26-28, He gave man power to subdue and exercise dominion over the works of His hand.
Partners to jointly own what He owns – Romans 8:17 tells us that we are heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ. Meaning that God wants us to have and enjoy all the glory, honour, power and riches that are in Christ Jesus.
Partners to work together with Him to accomplish His plans and purposes (Philippians 2:3)
Partners to fellowship with Him on the highest level of intimacy – The highest form of partnership that can exist between two people is that of a marriage partnership where two people cleave together and become one flesh (Genesis 2:24). This is the kind of intimate partnership God seeks with us; this is why our relationship with God is described in terms of a marriage relationship in several Bible passages. In Isaiah 54:5, God is called our Maker and Husband. And several times in the book of Revelation, believers are referred to as the bride of Christ (Revelation 19:7-9, Revelation 21:2, 9).
DIVINE PARTNERSHIP IS INITIATED BY GOD
If someone has an idea to establish a museum for children and the person comes to you to express their intention to go into this business venture, how you can fit in, the advantages/benefits that will come to you if you join him to set up and run the museum, it is the person who made the first approach that is the One who initiated the partnership.
Divine partnership is initiated by God. He is the One who chooses or selects us to be His partners. He is the One who makes the first approach. John 15:16 tells us we did not choose God, He choose us… Ephesians 1:4 also tells us of how we were chosen by God before the creation of the world…
Through His Word, God tells us what His “business” idea, plan and goals are, how we can fit in, what role we can play in this partnership, and all the benefits we will enjoy if we agree to partner with Him.
DIVINE PARTNERSHIP IS PURELY AN ACT OF GOD’S MERCY AND GRACE
One of the main reasons why people enter into partnership agreements is because very few people have all the resources, skills, knowledge, experience or connections to run a successful business. Like the person with the idea to start a museum for children. The person has this good business idea but may not have the necessary funding to set up and operate the business. Hence, he seeks out someone or people to partner with him.
Most times, people are advised that in a partnership whether business or marriage, you look out for a partner that will bring something different to the table. A partner that will complement you in those things you are weak or lacking in.
So the question in divine partnership is what resources, strength, experience, knowledge wisdom or skill do we have which God doesn’t have or is lacking in that He needs us to partner with Him? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! God wanting to partner with us is purely an act of divine mercy and grace.
God isn’t asking us to partner with Him because we have physical strength – Isaiah 40:28-30 tells us that God is the only One who never gets tired and weary. Even youths; those that are ordinarily considered to have so much zeal, energy and stamina do get tired and weary. But the Almighty God, as old as He is, never for one day gets so tired He needs to stop and take a nap (Psalm 121:4) or take time off work (John 5:17).
God isn’t asking us to partner with Him because we are knowledgeable, intelligent, smart or wise – Job 21:22 says can anyone teach knowledge to God? We don’t even know ourselves as much as God does. We don’t even know the numbers of strands of hair on our head, but God knows (Matthew 10:30). 1 Corinthians 1:25 tells us how our wisdom and knowledge stands next to that of God. The verse says the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.
God isn’t asking us to partner with Him because we have money or riches – When we hear the net worth of the billionaires of this world, we could be amazed, impressed or challenged to hear how stinking rich they are. But nobody’s riches impresses God. God can’t be impressed because you can’t even put a figure to His own net worth. How can you estimate the net worth of a God who says in Deuteronomy 10:14 that the heavens, even the highest heaven, the earth and everything in it belongs to God? Or how can you value the riches of a God who says the silver and gold is His (Haggai 2:8). Not only can you not put a figure to God’s net worth, if God decides to, in one day, He can take away all the wealth of the richest person on earth.
God initiating a partnership with us; God wanting to partner with us is a purely an act of divine mercy and grace. So there’s no basis for pride in this walk with God. We should be humbled and amazed that God would want to partner with us when we aren’t bringing anything to the table that God lacks. God chooses us to be His partners to create an opportunity to bless us.
David understood divine partnership that was why he could say “what is man that you are mindful of him” (Psalm 8:4). Paul understood divine partnership that was why He could say in Romans 12:1 that in view of God’s mercy offer your bodies as living sacrifices holy and acceptable to God. In other words, in view of the fact that God wants to partner with you when you aren’t bringing anything He lacks or anything to complement Him in this partnership, yield your all to God.
PARTNERING WITH GOD IS A DECISION YOU CAN NEVER REGRET
There are so many life experiences of people who entered into a marriage or business partnership with excitement and high expectations, but later were filled with regrets. Some of these partnerships ended with so much bitterness, ill feelings and even a court case. But when God tells us to partner with Him and we agree to this partnership, there will be no regrets whatsoever. God is not a man who will be an insincere or untrustworthy partner. God won’t lie to you; God won’t make promises to the partnership and fail to fulfill His obligations or promises.
Partnering with God makes you a much better person that what you were before entering into the partnership (Isaiah 51:2). It transforms your life inside out and takes you to heights you never thought you could reach.
WHY GOD WANTS US TO PARTNER WITH HIM IN WARFARE
Now that we have a better understating of divine partnership, let’s focus on partnering with God in warfare.
There is an ongoing battle between the kingdom of God and the Kingdom of darkness. Revelation 12:7-9 gives us the background to how the battle began. This battle will continue until the devil and his cohorts are eventually thrown into hell (Revelation 20:10). For now, the devil is not in hell or caged or tied down anywhere. He is roaming through the earth going back and forth causing problems for people (Job 1:6-7). Satan is an evil lion prowling around looking for people to devour; looking for people to rip their spiritual lives, ministries, businesses, career, marriage and family to pieces (1 Peter 5:8). He is a cunning, crafty serpent slyly moving around looking for people to deceive and lead stray (Genesis 3:1-6).
This is the reason why God is calling out to us to partner with Him so together with God we can frustrate the devil’s agenda. God needs people to partner with Him to wreck great destruction and havoc on the kingdom of darkness. When we partner with God in warfare, we become a battle axe in His hand that He uses to shatter and scatter meetings and plans of the kingdom of darkness (Jeremiah 51:20). When we partner with God in warfare, we are divinely empowered to uproot, tear down, destroy and overthrow every evil planting and satanic agenda (Jeremiah 1:10). When we partner with God in warfare, we are anointed with the Holy Spirit and power of God to deliver all those that are oppressed, suppressed and possessed by the devil (Acts 10:38).
BENEFITS OF PARTNERING WITH GOD IN WARFARE
1. Partnering With God In warfare Opens You Up To The Greatness and Majesty of God
God isn’t calling on us to partner with Him in warfare so we spend hours on end talking and thinking of the devil or so we become so demon conscious that we see demons in every bird, cat or wall gecko that comes near us, or we see everyone as a potential witch that wants to harm us. Partnering with God in warfare is opening you up to how great, awesome and powerful your God is.
Moses partnered with God in warfare when he agreed to be used by God to deliver the people of Israel from the bondage, oppression and ruthless treatment of Pharaoh and the Egyptians (Exodus 3). Moses was a partner with God in warfare who saw the unlimited power of God. After God gave the Israelites victory over Pharaoh and the Egyptians, Moses testified in Exodus 15:6-7 about how he saw the greatness and majesty of God. Moses sang a beautiful song about how God use His right hand of power to defeat those who dared to oppose God and oppress the people of God. He sang about how great and majestic God is when He goes to war. I pray God opens our eyes to see how great and majestic He is as He shatters and destroys every opposition before us, as He brings down right before our very eyes enemies much stronger than us, enemies to numerous to count (Psalm 92:11).
2. Partnering with God In Warfare Places You On The Winning Side
In the battle between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness, there isn’t anything like “it’s a draw”. Only one side wins in this battle and that side is the side of God. When we are on God’s side He always leads us to triumph. “But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57). “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ…” (2 Corinthians 2:14).
Romans 8:31 says if God is for us who can be against us. If we are on God’s side, if God is the One we have partnered with, no devil, demon, principality or force of darkness can fight against us and prevail. We win with God. We conquer with God (Romans 8:37).
3. Partnering With God In Warfare Puts You Steps Ahead of Your Enemy
One big advantage of partnering with God in warfare is that God begins to reveal to you everything the enemy is planning for you, every trap he has set for you so you walk pass all the evil nets and traps prepared for you. In 2 Kings 6:8-22, the king of Aram was at war with Israel. Everything the king of Aram planned to do to Israel, God revealed to Elisha in his bedroom. Elisha didn’t attend any of their strategic sessions, but he got to know everything that had been planned. You don’t need to attend meetings of the kingdom of darkness to know what they are planning. If you are a divine partner, right in your bedroom God will reveal their evil agenda to you.
Once an evil plan is revealed, it becomes next to impossible for that plan to succeed. Once it is discovered that some robbers are planning to come to a particular location, the planned robbery is as good as cancelled. Once a planned coup is discovered, that’s the end of that coup. It is only when you are unaware of what is being planned that opportunity is given for the plan to be successfully executed. The Mighty Man in battle will not allow you to be ignorant of the devil’s schemes so he outwits you (2 Corinthians 2:11). God will put you steps ahead of your enemy.
4. Partnering With God In Warfare Brings You Under The Captain And Commander Who Doesn’t Allow His Soldiers Be Defeated
Sometimes in war, a soldier may get shot or knocked down. In spiritual warfare, there will be times we will suffer attacks from the opposing side. We may get knocked down by one of their arrows, but if we belong to the army of the Lord of Hosts, even when we fall on the battle field, He will be there to pick us up. Proverbs 24:10 says a righteous man may fall seven times, but God will help him get up. Have you been knocked down by afflictions and trials of lives, have you given in to a temptation and you have fallen flat on your feet? The Captain of the Lord of hosts will pick you up and raise you up so you don’t quit until the war is over and you have won and conquered. God doesn’t allow His soldiers accept or wallow in defeat. He keeps getting them back on their feet until they surmount every attack, opposition and enemy.
HOW CAN WE PARTNER WITH GOD IN WARFARE?
Knowing all these awesome benefits of partnering with God in warfare, the question then is how can we partner with God in warfare?
1. Have A Common Enemy With God
One of the reasons why many partnerships fail is because partners discover they have different goals and objectives that they are pursuing. In Ephesians 6:10-18, Paul, one of God’s partners in warfare, gives us some timely advice. When addressing the issue of spiritual warfare, the first advice Paul gives is that you must know who your enemy is and one thing is certain, your enemy isn’t flesh and blood.
Unfortunately, today so many of us are fighting flesh and blood instead of the real enemy. We are at war with our spouses, parents, in laws, boss, landlord, fellow ministers and brethren instead of taking the battle to the enemy’s gates which is in the spiritual realm. As we fight flesh and blood, evil seeds like bitterness, hatred, anger, malice, strife and un-forgiveness grow and germinate. These evil seeds don’t weaken or destroy the person or people we harbour such feelings for we are the ones who get badly affected by harbouring any of these vices. We are the ones who get so weakened by these evils seeds that we become of no use on the battlefield or become an easy prey for the enemy.
The flip side to fighting flesh and blood is that someone we perceive as a potential enemy or even someone the devil is consciously using, can repent and move on to become a vessel of honour in the hands of God while we are busy pinning away with bitterness.
In Matthew 16:21-23, when Jesus told His disciples how He would suffer, be crucified and raised to life on the third day, Peter told Him never Lord this shall never happen. Immediately, Jesus said get behind me Satan. Jesus was not saying Peter was Satan or the devil. Jesus identified that at that point in time, the devil was speaking through Peter to derail Jesus from fulfilling the purpose for which He came to earth. Sometimes the devil can influence people we know, people close to us to say and do things to hurt us or to keep us from God’s plan for our lives. But these same people can repent and become great in the hands of God. Peter was a man who was once influenced by the devil to say the wrong thing, but today Peter is recognized and esteemed as one of the pillars of the church of God (Galatians 2:9).
1 Chronicles 21:1 also tells us of how Satan incited David to take a census of the Israelites contrary to the will of God. But what was the final word on David. He had a glorious testimony to the extent that the keys Jesus uses to open doors Satan has locked and close doors Satan has opened is named after David (Revelation 3:7).
The flesh and blood you are fighting today can repent and become a great person. If you want to be great, take the battle to the spiritual realm so you are free from bitterness, anger and un-forgiveness which can slow you down or keep you tied to the same spot for years.
God has said we are his battle axe; His weapons for warfare. An axe can be very sharp or it can be blunt. A sharp axe can cut things better and much faster that a blunt axe. When we are filled with bitterness, strife and the like, we become a blunt battle axe. It takes us much longer than is necessary to cast out evil spirits, it becomes so hard for us to bring down and overcome the enemy when our axe is blunt. May this not be our portion in Jesus mighty name. Amen!
Joel 2:7-8 gives us an understanding of what a strong army is like. The army is focused, well structured and organised. The soldiers all march in line, in the same direction, without swerving from their target, goals and objectives. What can be the strength of an army that is moving in different directions, one facing and fighting her spouse, the other his boss, another her mother in law, and another a member of his church? As soldiers of Christ, we are all to march in line, without breaking ranks, without diverting from our course which is to march straight ahead with the power of God right to the enemy’s gates which is in the spiritual realm.
While Joel 2:7 addresses how the strong army faces the enemy, Joel 2:8 deals with how the soldiers relate with one another. “They do not jostle each other”; they work hard at their relationship with one another to ensure that they don’t push down, press down or injure one another. What can be the strength of an army that it is the soldiers of that same army that are hurting and injuring themselves?
Revelation 12:12 tells us that the devil is filled with fury because he knows his time is short. Satan knows he has a limited time to do all the damage he wants to do, he has a limited time to get as many people as possible to go down with him to hell. One major tactic and trick of Satan to help him effectively utilize the little time he has on his hands is to get us so busy fighting ourselves to distract us from facing and warring against him. The more we fight flesh and blood, the more distracted and spiritually insensitive we become which makes it easier for the enemy to plant a whole lot of weeds; unwanted problems in our lives, family, church and nation (Matthew 13:24-28). May we not be foolish on the battlefield of life but have one and the same enemy with God.
2. Submit to the will of God
In James 4: 7, God gives us the steps to spiritual warfare. Spiritual warfare begins with submitting and yielding ourselves to God. It is when we submit to the will of God that we can resist the devil and he will flee from us. But what is happening among believers today? We are resisting the devil without bothering to first submit or align our personal will and desires with God’s will for life. No wonder the devil isn’t fleeing. No wonder we spend hours, days, months and in some cases years casting out just one demon.
Spiritual warfare actually falls into two key battles. The battle that comes from occultist, people engaged in witchcraft, principalities, powers and other agents and forces of the kingdom of darkness is the secondary battle. The main or primary battle is the battle for our soul. Peter sheds more light on this battle in 1 Peter 2:11 when he tells us to abstain from sinful desires that war against our soul. Galatians 5:17 tells us that there is a serious conflict between the sinful nature and the Spirit of God. In Romans 7:23, Paul said there was a war going on between his mind and sin. From Revelation 12:17 we see that the driving force behind spiritual warfare is an anger the devil has for everyone who obeys God and holds to the testimony of Jesus. So we are engaged in a battle to keep us from obeying God, a battle to destroy our testimony for Christ. This is the primary or central reason the devil wars against believers. This primary battle is more intense than the secondary battle. And we see this from the way Jesus handled demons and evil spirits and the way He prayed about the will of God. In Luke 22:39-44, just before His crucifixion, Jesus faced the battle to submit to the will of God. As the battle grew more and more intense, as Jesus prayed His sweat was like drops of blood. Compare this to how Jesus handled evil spirits. Many times with just a word, Jesus would cast out demons and evil spirits (Matthew 8:16). In some instances, He didn’t even say anything to them. Seeing Him alone, the demons would become restless and fearful (Luke 4:41, Matthew 8:31). Jesus’ life shows that if you submit to the will of God for your life (John 4:34, John 6:38), casting out demons can’t be a big struggle for you. With little or no effort they will flee from you. But when you aren’t yielded to God, when you aren’t in the will of God for your life, you sweat and struggle to cast out demons.
Jesus conquered the primary battle that was why the secondary battle was a walkover for Him. Jesus conquered the temptation to sin that was why with ease He could cast out demons and evil spirits (Matthew 4:1-11).
Jesus explains in Matthew 7:21-23 how important the will of God is. In these verses, Jesus tells us of how some people will get so absorbed with the secondary battle to the extent that they will place it over and above doing the will of God. The sad consequence of which will be Jesus denying them on the last day. May this not be our portion in Jesus might name. I pray God places us all in the center of His will for our lives so we live and walk in victory.
3. Make Jesus Your All In All
In Romans 8:38-39, Paul lists all kinds of battles a person can face in life. He talks about things that constitute the primary battle and things that make up the secondary battle. After facing some of these battles in his own personal life, he came to the conclusion that all battles are overcome in Christ and through Christ. The real issue to concern ourselves with in spiritual warfare is not how strong our enemy is and what he is doing. The concern should be how strong is our relationship with Christ?
Evil spirits actually know those who are in Christ, those who have a strong relationship with Christ. Demons don’t respect what you say, what they fear and respect, what intimidates them, what frightens and subdues them is a strong, vibrant personal relationship with Christ. If your relationship with the Lord it is weak or nonexistent, it gives them a good platform to operate and oppress (Acts 19:13-16).
Is your relationship with Christ a priority to you? Who and what does your life revolve around? Is it about knowing Jesus, being in Jesus, living for Jesus? Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ. If indeed the love and passion for Christ fills our heart, no demon can destroy our testimony for Christ. If truly Jesus is living and reigning in our hearts, even if all the evil spirits and witches come together to attack us, Jesus will give us victory.
Partnering with God in warfare is much deeper than just binding and casting out demons. It’s about having a most intimate relationship with Jesus. It’s about giving your all to Christ and making Him your all in all so that when the kingdom of darkness comes against you, they hit against a brick wall.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, help me to know You and live for You. Let the mark of Christ be inscribed on my forehead; let the mark of victory rest on me.