Check the Integrity of your Gatekeeper.
A brother in Christ by the name of Brian Jones wrote recently something so profound that it both laid me out from the sheer concussive force of it, and then led me to share and elaborate as the Spirit led me. He wrote the following;
"The Great Wall of China would barely be finished before they would be invaded three times. The invaders did not go over the wall, they didn't dig under it, they simply bribed the gatekeeper. Our mind has a gatekeeper. Have you bribed yours to allow an invasion? Check whom and what you are letting in, then tell me you don't have a security breech!"
As with all truth I have been exposed to lately, I first needed to get up off the floor from the sheer impact. Then, once I conveyed to him how much what he said blessed and edified me, I started writing.
When a member of the elect submits their life to the LORD, an eviction notice is served to all of the old inhabitants of *us*... what we are told is the temple of the Living God (2 Corinthians 6:16). All of them. The older, more entrenched ones, the ones which we came to love for the lying comforts they offered, the ecstasies they granted us; all which they made us feel before we were convicted of the sin, have rent controlled quarters within us. These usually have to be gassed, smoked out, bound, and dragged, kicking and screaming, from the premises, as the LORD grants us grace to do when we earnestly seek His face and bow to the Truth. We are then set free; the scales removed from our eyes so that they finally see and acknowledge the truth of our inherent sinfulness and need to be saved, the iron shackles removed from our wrists and ankles to allow us to at last be free, now that we are justified and made holy by the blood of the Son of God, to make war upon the enemy of our souls. We are supplied with armor, and by study of the Word of the LORD, shown how to wear them. We are supplied with the Sword of the Spirit, and by study of the Word of the LORD, shown how to wield the blade.
But the story does not end there.
"24 “When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ 25 When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. 26 Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first.”" Luke 11:24-26
We are not given armor and weapons for show. We are not given sight to recognize our need for Him, supplied with weapon and armor, taught in their use, to then use them only on occasion, or when and where convenient. Our new way of life, from now until death, is the way of the warrior which champions the truth and lays down his or her life for it. We will be called to arms at all hours, day and night. We had best learn the practice of *sleeping* in the armor, with the Sword clenched in our fist, or we will perish, because that which left us by the Sovereign grace of the LORD will come back to test our mettle again. And again. And again. It *will not stop*, so we must depend ever more upon the LORD for our strength. The walls must always be vigilantly manned. The gatekeeper in the tower above the gates must have integrity such that they can not be bribed, nor feel pity or compassion when the unclean spirit we once harbored returns with another tactic, and by begging and bringing up how it comforted us before, or reminds us of how we once loved it, and thus seeks mercy to be allowed to enter in again.
To fail in any of this is to be overrun.
"1 They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. 2 When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit came from the tombs to meet him. 3 This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him any more, not even with a chain. 4 For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. 5 Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones.
6 When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. 7 He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Swear to God that you won’t torture me!” 8 For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you evil spirit!”
9 Then Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”
“My name is Legion,” he replied, “for we are many.” 10 And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area.
11 A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside. 12 The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.” 13 He gave them permission, and the evil spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned.
14 Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened. 15 When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. 16 Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man—and told about the pigs as well. 17 Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region.
18 As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him. 19 Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” 20 So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed." Mark 5:1-20
One thing that gave me deeper understanding and appreciation of the grace of sight without scales; every unclean spirit Jesus encounters knows Him by sight. The people knew Him as the carpenter Joseph's son. His disciples weren't sure in the beginning *who* He was. But these demons knew Him immediately. Not only did they know Him, they pointed at Him and called out to Him in the way the condemned behold their executioner at the time appointed for their execution. "What do You want with me?"
4 chapters earlier in Mark, Jesus encounters one in the synagogue, (That's right... *in the place of worship*. Let that sink in a few moments.) and it asks "Have You come to destroy us?" This is the same question which the condemned have answered for them unspoken, when the warden and the priest and guards assemble before the cell door and he says "It is time."
They know their fate. They know it is coming. Everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels. They commit their acts knowing there is no forgiveness, nothing but payment exacted for their audacity to rebel against their Creator. I read of the man with Legion within him dwelling near tombs, crying out and causing the man to cut himself.
Monstrous despair. It made sense that it would both be where it was and doing what it was doing to the host. Self hatred and loathing must be at the root of each of them, and the myriad ways in which they weaponize and deploy the weapons of their master the Accuser; "the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life" are proof that they have no other purpose than to use as many means to bring you to their level of misery and despair as possible, and see you tormented with them. They have nothing left.
CAST THEM OUT!!! By the grace and authority given to us, by the LORD and Savior who ransomed us with His own blood, cast them over your walls far from you AND DON'T LET A SINGLE ONE OF THEM BACK IN, no matter how piteous the cry or overwhelming the force arrayed is, FOR THEY THAT BE WITH US ARE MORE THAN THEY THAT BE WITH THEM.
Bring the gatekeeper of your mind, where the battlefield truly is, before the throne of God, and trade up for one with impregnable integrity. Because anything that gets in and does not glorify the LORD your God is only there to kill you. Submit therefore to the Absolute Truth of the Almighty, use what He has given you and taught you, be strengthened by your obedience to love Him with all you have, and among the brethren encourage and love one another, and live. Fail and be taken with those who see only their destruction in front of them, and share their fate.