Taking Cities and Nations for Christ
“The Lord said to Joshua, ‘See, I have given Jericho into your hand, with its king and the valiant warriors.’. . . Joshua said to the people, ‘Shout! For the Lord has given you the city,’” (Joshua 6: 2,16).
Jericho. What a great story! Also a source of tremendous encouragement, it has for centuries spawned many wonderful, faith-inspiring sermons and songs. It seemed so easy: march, shout, gather the spoils.
Your Town, U.S.A. - what a different story. March, shout, no spoils . . . march, shout, no spoils . . . march, shout, no spoils.
Frustration, Disillusionment. Unbelief. Despair.
May I remind you that in both of the above verses God said He had given Jericho to Israel before there was any change whatsoever. Has He done that with you? Has He given you your city, and yet it still looks the same?
I have good news for you. When God states He has done something, from then on, as far as He is concerned, it is a done deal - He has given.
It is well worth considering that events in Scripture did not always happen as quickly as it appears they did. Though the book of Joshua can be read in a couple of hours, the conquest of Canaan under Joshua’s leadership took about seven years. The entire book covers a period of approximately 25 years. And at the end of the book, all the tribes of Israel still had not fully conquered all of their territories (see Judges 1:27-36). Later in Israel’s history, after a grand and glorious beginning, they experienced a sixteen-year delay in the rebuilding of the Temple (see Ezra 3-4). Through the ministry of the prophet Haggai, courage and faith to continue came.
Delays, setbacks, and long-term campaigns are not uncommon in the Kingdom of God. Though God has facilitated an acceleration in the pace of world evangelization, endurance and patience are still very key factors. You may not be as far behind as you think! Hang in there! We play until we win. God has given us our cities and nations, even though it may not yet look like it.
Is this comparison with Joshua and Israel valid for us today? Can we really take our cities and nations, or is that a lofty but unattainable goal? Consider this report of a city-taking shared by George Otis, Jr., in his book Informed Intercession.
In the 1970s Almolonga, Guatemala, was idolatrous and economically depressed. Alcoholism was rampant, poverty and violence the norm. Families suffered terribly due to the depravity that ruled. The Gospel did not prosper; persecution of Christian leaders was common.
In 1974, a series of five-hour prayer vigils began, and shortly thereafter, God began to move. Deliverance and healings began to break forth, even resurrections from the dead. Conversions began to take place at such a rate that 90 percent of the 19,000 people in Almolonga became evangelical Christians.
The revival impacted every area of life: families, businesses, even the produce of the land. Nicknamed “America’s Vegetable Garden,” the fields produced three harvests per year, with five-pound beets, carrots bigger than a man’s arm, and cabbages the size of basketballs.
Crime disappeared so much that, in 1994, the last of the four jails closed. Aftershocks of the revival in Almolonga continued for years.
“Great!” you may be saying. “But what do those places have to do with my city, and what do they have to do with the watchman anointing?” Everything.
First of all, the Bible states, “What God has done for one city, He’ll do for another.” You didn’t know this was in the Bible? Sure you did. You just did not recognize the Sheets paraphrase. Most translations read something like, “God is no respecter of persons,” (Acts 10:34 KJV).
Another verse says, “God wants to save people in your city just as much as those in Almolonga.” You probably caught on by now. This is an interpretation of 2 Peter 3:9 (KJV): “The Lord is . . . not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” Yes, there is hope for your city and mine, and there is hope for America. We are not at the mercy of sin, sinners, politicians, satan, or demons. Refuse to place control of your destiny in any of these! Choose to believe God is wiser and more powerful than the devil. If He wants to bring revival to America - and He does - then we can have revival, if we do our part.
No one said it would be easy. On the contrary, words such as persecution, tribulation, fight, warfare, wrestle, endurance, and others like them are all applied to us in Scripture. But so are such as victory, faith, overcomer, conqueror, power, authority, harvest, and miracle.
If we are willing to obey God fully, walk in faith, and never give up, we can have anything God wants us to have. And that includes revival.
Pray with me:
Father, we have moved into the era of taking cities and nations for You. Revival will take place on a never-before-seen scale. Your love for people, even those who are Your enemies is beyond our ability to comprehend. While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Open our eyes to see that this love has not waned, that You are just as passionate to save the lost as You were the day Jesus was crucified.
Awaken passion and faith in Your people to believe for this revival. We know You can bring it - Your arm is not too short that You cannot save. You have prepared the soil, sown the seeds and the earth is ripe. Now, You are coming with the combined efforts of Holy Spirit, the angel armies, and the church. Hell has never seen anything like the triumphant campaign about to be unleashed on the earth.
We ask You to bring a fresh baptism of fire to us. Infuse us with holy zeal. May we be consumed with Your heart to save. In fact, we boldly ask You for a movement generating the most radical evangelists the world has ever seen. Baptize them with power and faith to do incredible signs and wonders to raise the dead, cast out devils, and set the captives free. That was Your mission statement when You walked the earth and it will now become ours.
We call forth this world-changing revival in the all-powerful name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
We decree the great harvest fields of the earth are ripe and WILL NOW BE REAPED!
Portions of today’s post were taken from my book Watchman Prayer.