Even as we contend for national breakthroughs concerning globalist agendas, the Lord is directing many to address and confront some major territorial roadblocks. It is the collection of territorial strongholds and lies that feed national principalities and powers. Thus, we need to pay attention to our individual territories and overturn some specific demonic strongholds if we are to keep and steward the freedoms we long for.
To provide some biblical context for this, consider several passages where Jesus references the influence of demonic spirits at the regional level. In these key scriptures, we can gain wisdom and insight into the strategies of the enemy within territories and learn how to defeat his games.
Demons know their jurisdiction.
And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” He replied, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” And he begged Him earnestly not to send them out of the country. (Mark 5:9-10)
In this exchange with the demon-possessed man from the Gadarenes, Jesus was told that this legion of demons didn’t want Him to “send them out of the country.” The word “country” actually means “territory, the space lying between two places or limits, a region.” The demons knew if they were sent out of their current territory, they would lose their jurisdictional authority. This is because territorial spirits gain their power when enough people in that territory agree with their lies. Other territories may not host their presence if the people within those territories refuse their influence. But, Jesus knew their ploy and sent the legion into a herd of pigs which He promptly threw off a cliff.
Jesus referenced territories unable to accept miracles.
And He said, “Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his hometown. But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heavens were shut up three years and six months, and a great famine came over all the land, and Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.” When they heard these things, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. (Luke 4:24-28)
The context that Jesus gave for this brief lesson in territorial strongholds was to say that no prophet is acceptable in his hometown (also Matthew 13:57). This suggests that an entire town or city can have a collective mindset that is opposed to God’s will, thus forming a territorial stronghold (see Matthew 23:37). Then He gives two examples of other prophets whose messages were not received in their hometowns – but were accepted in neighboring territories. Scripture then reveals the spirit fueling these blinded Pharisees to whom He was speaking by stating, “…all in the synagogue were filled with wrath.” This was no normal human response to Jesus’ admonition, but a strong demonic reaction to Jesus’ exposure of their collective stranglehold.
The problem is not a lack of miracles, but a lack of faith to believe and repent.
Then He began to denounce the cities where most of His mighty works had been done, because they did not repent. “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. (Matthew 11:20-21)
Jesus spoke to entire cities that were unwilling to receive miracles due to their collective lack of faith and willingness to surrender. It was a corporate agreement with the enemy that sealed the fate of these unrepentant territories.
Even Jesus “could do no miracles” in His home territory.
And when Jesus had finished these parables, He went away from there, and coming to His hometown He taught them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished, and said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and these mighty works? Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not His mother called Mary? And are not His brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all His sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?” And they took offense at Him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own household.” And He did not do many mighty works there, because of their unbelief. (Matthew 13:53-58)
In Mark’s retelling of this story (6:4-6), it states that Jesus “…could do no mighty work there.” The Son of God was actually limited in doing miracles, not because He lacked the power, but because the territory had been given over to demons of unbelief. Without the people being open to His supernatural power, His presence was not welcome. From heaven’s standpoint, it would seem that signs, wonders, and miracles were not in short supply. It was faith that was lacking and a spirit of unbelief that closed the door to the supernatural.
One of the biggest territorial strongholds in this nation is UNBELIEF.
Jesus rebukes this spirit of unbelief (lack of faith) probably more than any other stronghold in His earthly ministry. It constantly fed the religious spirit and was the major roadblock in people receiving His message as well as His miracles. Unbelief was so prevalent, it took over entire cities and regions, preventing Him from proclaiming the truth and demonstrating the Kingdom.
Unfortunately, I believe it’s the same today. A demonic legion of unbelief has blinded the masses and unleashed chaos in the land. This unbelief is driving people to deny what is good and wrongly accuse who is right. Even as truths about this nation and our history are being revealed and satanic alliances are being exposed, the spirit of unbelief has fueled a collective madness within our national borders. It’s only in those regions where godly influence has been established that reactions are less severe and there is more openness to what God is actually revealing and doing.
The two underlying causes of Unbelief.
When Jesus made His pronouncement in Matthew 13, two factors seemed to heighten the negative response from those who were spiritually blind. The first was that they were too familiar with Him. The Pharisees didn’t recognize Jesus as the Son of God because all they could see was the son of Joseph. A familiar spirit was at work, blinding them to another possibility beyond their own experience. Though understandable from a human standpoint, this familiar mindset became a demonic stronghold when they stubbornly clung to what they perceived in the natural. Their arrogance and pride prevented them from seeing the supernatural answer to their generational prayers. In not surrendering their sacred cows, they betrayed the Lamb of God.
The other contributing factor was their offense at Him. Because Jesus would not fit within their man-centered theology, they became offended and filled with rage. The truth Jesus presented challenged their ego-filled narrative and they took it personally. The spirit of offense not only blinded them, but fueled hatred and contempt for the life-giving message He brought. The demons they hosted only grew more powerful as their resentment went unabated.
We must overcome familiar spirits, offense, and unbelief!
The lesson in all of this is to rightly discern the spirit behind negative reactions to truth so we can rightly direct our prayers and our actions. First, we must consider mindsets and beliefs that have become so familiar that they are limiting our vision for the future. We must assess our own expectations to be sure we are not bound to our past, but open to new ideas and possibilities without fear. Second, we must guard our hearts against offense when hearing messages that challenge the status quo or threaten our personal comfort zones. We must determine to listen before passing judgment on those we disagree with. At a time when everyone’s beliefs and assumptions are being challenged, we must be intentional in keeping an open mind and open heart to what the Spirit is saying and revealing.
Even in the face of disbelief and denial about the true state of our world and the forces aligned against us, we must contend for the truth. We must be steadfast in our hope for the truth to set us free, both personally and collectively. But in our prayers for both revelations and exposures to come forth, we must go beyond merely hoping for “proof” to convince the naysayers. It is apparent that even tangible, fact-checked, uncensored evidence may not be enough to counter a demonic stronghold of unbelief. In the end, regardless of the truths revealed and the evidence shown, there are those who will still not believe.
What is needed is a faithful people of God who will not stop declaring the truth and demonstrating the Kingdom of God with power and authority. Every time Jesus was accused and threatened, He kept on preaching. He was not swayed by unbelief, nor was He silenced by hissing snakes in robes. He knew His mission and did not relent. Even in His own hometown, He did not stand down, but contended for breakthrough for those who might listen. He had a window of time in which to make His voice heard. In like manner, there is a window of time where the Church must speak up or forever be silenced.
Let’s claim territories and regions for the Kingdom!
In this awakening process to global deliverance, we can each take part within our own cities and territories. We can overturn the spirit of unbelief through our unshakeable faith in God’s plans for our good, and our collective declarations of His rule and His reign. As more and more territories yield to the Lordship of Christ, the national stranglehold will lose its grip. The principalities that have held us hostage will be taken down, city by city, as “Legion” is driven out by the Champion Himself. Authority over nations will be given to those who answer this call and remain steadfast in hope and unwavering in faith (Revelation 2:26).