Doug Stringer began developing this word in late 2006 concerning one of the most pertinent issues of our times.
BREAKING THROUGH THE PRINCE OF PERSIA STRONGHOLDS!
BY DOUG STRINGER, JULY 2007
We see this same decree manifest in the death culture of our generation, in their dress and in a widespread disregard of life. The enemy’s plan is prevent young people from coming into the Lord’s destiny through distractions, drugs, suicide, murder, and more, and ultimately issuing the death decree before they are even born! But regardless of the tactics, young people are still coming into their God ordained destinies through Christ.
I believe the decree rising from the Middle East that is meant for harm has it roots in the spirit of Iran (the spirit of Persia) and is feeding the fuel for radical Islam in Iraq. When it is exposed and that spirit comes down, Iraq will be free! And, just as it was in Esther’s day, what is meant for harm will be turned to good. But for the battle to be won, we must be on our knees to strengthen the angels of the Lord who are doing battle in the heavenlies so that we can see a global shift.
“This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: “Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit, Says the Lord of hosts.” (Zechariah 4:6) “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Eph. 6:12)It’s a battle of the spirit, one we can win only on our knees.
I recently taped a series of television programs that were simultaneously translated into Farsi and are being telecast into Iran over a period of three months. I was also able to be part of two live broadcasts into the nation with phone lines for individuals to call in with questions. One of them was geared toward youth, and the other one addressed the question, “What is Christianity?“
Reports from Iran are saying that, conservatively, over 500,000 Iranians have come to Christ during the past two years, and 250,000 of those in the past seven to eight months! One of my Iranian neighbors in Houston fled to the U.S. when the Ayatollah Khomeini came into power. She told me how her family now speaks boldly the name of Jesus when she talks to them on the phone, instead of speaking in code as they have always done in the past out of fear of persecution! But shortly after my return from the taping, we received word that the Iranian government had cracked down on the house church there, destroying thousands of dollars of Bibles and literature in a raid on their warehouse. Many leaders, we were told, had compromised, and lives were in danger. As President Mahmoud was quoted as saying, “Our biggest threat is not from America nor from a Zionist nation. Our biggest threat is from the Christians that are filling up our streets.”
Yet out of Iraq and Iran, there is a cry going up to God! There are Mordecais and Esthers in Iran today and Daniels in Iraq, believers who are fasting and praying for deliverance for their people! Iraqis and Iranians who have been dispersed around the world are also crying out and aching for the redemption of their homeland. These beautiful people are separated from their land because of the few who are in control, and they are crying our for redemption, even outside of the geographic borders. But, as in Daniel‘s day, their answers are being hindered because of a spiritual battle with the Prince of Persia (Iran). But God hears their prayers.
We don‘t always hear the good news behind the bad news, but God is still doing a work in the midst of all the negative things we see and hear on the media, and He hears the cries of His people coming before the throne. I remember Frank Peretti’s novel, This Present Darkness. Whenever the saints began to pray, the angels in heaven were strengthened and would begin to declare, “For the saints and for the Lamb! For the saints and for the Lamb!“ I can hear that same cry reaching the heavens today, every time we go to our knees and begin to pray with informed intercession.
We often quote Isaiah 26:3:
“You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You.”
But we seldom read on to verses 12 and 13:
“Lord, You will establish peace for us, For You have also done all our works in us. O Lord our God, masters besides You Have had dominion over us.”
If we are going to experience real victory and true peace, in our lives and in our nations, we cannot allow things other than God that control us, or other passions besides Him to have dominion over us. Even as greater doors are opened, the adversaries are many (I Corinthians 16:9). But sometimes the adversaries are internal, not external. Sometimes we need to start with our own internal conflicts and ask ourselves the questions:
What are the things that have dominion over me? What has hindered me from walking through the doors God has opened? Fear? Insecurity? Complacency? Apathy?
Scripture tells us Jesus has dominion over ALL things!
“For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. “(Colossians 1:16)
“And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.” (Colossians 1:18)
When other things have master over our emotions and our thought lives, they will have dominion over us. But when Jesus is pre-eminent in our hearts, our lives, and our thoughts, we have His authority over all principalities and dominions rather than those dominions having master over us. Furthermore, it is God’s intention for us to be yielded to Him in this way so that HIS CHURCH can make known His manifold wisdom to all those dominions, powers, and authorities “and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things thro ugh Jesus Christ; to the intent that now the manifold wisdom [power and authority] of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places… “(Ephesians 3:9-10)
It is not a time to be silent! We must be joining with the Esthers, the Mordecais, and the Daniels in lifting up our voices to heaven so that Jesus might have pre-eminence in all things! Daniel never asked to serve in the king’s palace, and Esther never sought to be queen. But God chose them for their simple obedience to stand for righteousness and justice and to not give way to fear.“For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?“ Esther 4:14
As we send forth the Gospel through the airwaves into Iran, we are standing for truth on the enemy’s home turf: the airwaves and the prayer waves. Every idle word will be judged! It has been proven by science sound waves never die. Every word spoken never falls to the ground, and every prayer is perpetual before the throne of God. “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath.” (Ephesians 2:1-3)
When I was in Brazil in May, I was asked to speak to a group of pastors and leaders. Normally, 40 to 50 individuals attend this monthly gathering. This time there were more. As I started to speak, the Holy Spirit had me set aside my prepared message and took me in an entirely different direction. I began with a quote from John Wesley, who said: “Give me 100 men who fear nothing but God and hate nothing but sin, and we can change the world!“ Little did I know as I said that I was speaking to exactly 100 people!”
I went on to say that our “preachers and politicians need a revival of character.“ Once again, I had no idea the audience included local and national politicians who call themselves Christians but live lives of corruption and compromise. My hosts, James and Andrea Alvarez from Somebody Cares Brazil, told me later, “What you said not only affected our city, but could affect our entire nation!“ Who would have known that my obedience to speak what was on my heart could have that kind of an impact?
And who knows why God has you where you are today! You may be an Esther or a Mordecai or a Daniel. He may call on you to speak to authorities and powers in the natural, or He may call you to make His manifold wisdom known by the authorities and powers in the heavenlies as you pray and undergird those on the front lines of the battle. God uses those in every-day life who yield to His Spirit.
My personal prayer is for the enemy to be exposed. In 2003, during a meeting of intercessors in San Antonio, a word came forth as one of the key leaders prayed that the enemy would be exposed like a snake in the ground. Just a few days later, Saddam Hussein was found hiding in the ground! Now I pray for Osama Bin Laden to be exposed. As the enemy is exposed, perceptions will change on the conflict itself and how things have played out.
We also need to pray the grace of God over our president. No leader would have ever wished for what he has gone through, from the moment he came into office. Who would ever have thought we would experience something like 9/11? A tsunami? Hurricanes like Katrina, Rita, Ivan and Wilma? So many natural disasters, all on one person’s watch! We live in a world of cynicism where there is no long honor of position or authority. But because all authority comes from God, we are uncovering ourselves when we continually tear it down.
Though we have not found weapons of mass destruction to the extent that was originally reported, we cannot overlook the atrocities of a regime that had annihilated many of their own people through chemicals and mass genocide. To look the other way would have been the same as tolerating Nazi Germany and Hitler, or even places like Rwanda and Sudan. Just as we hear the President’s critics cry out for the U.S. to help in Darfur, I pray for an understanding of the reality of the Iraqi holocaust that would have continued without some type of intervention.
The reality is that we live wicked times, and our battles can only be fought with an intervention of God Himself, and not with weapons of warfare, but by going to our knees and doing battle in the heavenlies.
We are in a season of intensity, and we need to be proactive, strategic, and intentional in our prayers. God wants to have dominion in our personal lives so that He can empower His Church corporately to take authority to speak over all things! He rules all thrones, all principalities, and all dominions.
There are times when a corporate attack comes from the spiritual realm, and the only way to counteract is they way Daniel and Esther did. Daniel called for an individual fast, and Esther called for a corporate fast to turn away the decree of death. What we need today is for the body to get focused on the author and finisher of their faith, to recognize that our opinions and personal preferences are not going to change the global circumstances. What will change them is when the body of Christ becomes a corporate voice, with a corporate sound of worship and intercession going up before the throne of God from the position of humility on our knees. As I’ve said before, too many people want the presence of God and the power of Pentecost, but before you go to the upper room, you must lower yourselves to your knees at the cross of Calvary.
When we come to that place and we begin to humble ourselves before God with great humility and honor, He will move against the powers and darkness and wickedness of spiritual places, and He will turn a bad thing into good for those who love God and are called according to His purposes, as we are told in Romans 8:28.
We can’t look just at the problems and the giants in the land, but we must also look to the God who is bigger than the giants. For years I have taught that the judgment that is coming will not be as it was in the days of Noah. This time, the Church, which is uniquely created for a time such, will be an ark of refuge, receiving even those who have used the church as fodder as they look to us in times of crisis and say, “This is the place of safety, the place of hope, the place with an answer for the world today.“ But we must first be a bride who is prepared, spotless and without blemish, ready to be used of God and not having other masters with dominion over us.
In the ’80s, we saw judgment beginning in the house of the Lord, but it is not the job of the world to judge the Church. God alone has aright to judge His church because He wants to keep it pure. But as the world began using the frailties and the failings of God’s people as fodder for ridicule, I began to declare, in the 1990s, that all that can be shaken will be shaken. We’ve seen corporate America shaken. We’ve seen Wall Street shaken, then Hollywood. The next shaking, I believe, will be in the media.
Watch what’s going to happen!