Saturday, March 1, 2014
Spiritual Warfare 101: An Early Lesson. A Day with Dr. Lester Sumrall
by Carolyn Hamlett
Shortly after I had left the kingdom of darkness, literally saved by the Power of Jesus Christ, I had some very perplexing experiences with "Christians". I had assumed that Christians were followers of Jesus Christ and had put away the evil ways. I assumed Christians had love for one another and compassion for their fellow man. I assumed wrong. The majority of church going people I knew were unGodly, dishonest, unkind and even abusive to me.
Just as evil operates in this world through people and situations even falsely calling it "Divine appointment", God works through His people and situations of TRUE Divine appointment to save and redeem what is His and to put it on the Rock, His safe place. I am sure that it was God who helped me through that very trying time when I was such a babe in Jesus Christ's Kingdom.
Someday I will write about the entire experience, but for now I will share a small, but significant portion of how God worked for me at that point in my life. The experience taught me some valuable lessons about Christians and what it actually means to follow Jesus Christ which is the very basics of spiritual warfare and deliverance ministries. I also learned that this isn't just about power, it is about love. Without love, there is no real power.
Dr. Lester Sumrall
Many years ago I had the pleasure and privilege of spending most of a day with world renowned Pastor, evangelist, author and demonologist, Dr. Lester Sumrall. I was a new Christian at the time and had been very beat up and abused not by demons this time, but by "Christians".
Dr. Sumrall told me something that morning which I will never forget, something so very true. He said, "Carolyn, "Christian" is a name tag some people put on and wear. Calling oneself a "Christian" doesn't make it so."
Later that day, at lunch, I was sitting at the table with Dr. Sumrall, his wife and their Christian pilot who had flown them in that day. We were talking about "deliverance ministries" and of the harm that was being done to good people at the hands of ignorant arrogant "Christians".
Dr. Sumrall picked up a butter knife and said to me, "If you needed surgery, Carolyn, would you get on this table, let my pilot (he pointed to his pilot) take this butter knife and start cutting on you?"
I looked around at all the people in the restaurant. I looked at the condition of our table, white table cloth loaded with plates of the half eaten meals garnished with crumbs and spills laying here and there. I replied, "No."
Dr. Sumerall next said, "It is the same with ministry and deliverance ministry. There is the proper time for surgery and the proper place. You don't just let anyone cut on you. You have the one who is trained and qualified to do the surgery; the seasoned surgeon who is the expert."
I don't think that Dr. Sumerall knew I was a "multiple". I didn't even know myself, though I had echoes of flashes of pieces of memory that I knew meant something, but as soon as they flashed, a part of me told me they meant nothing at all.
That day something very important was reinforced for me; that God's timing is perfect. I had no doubt that God orchestrated my meeting with Dr. Sumrall. Dr. Sumrall was a wonderful teacher and wise counselor for me and because he listened to God and God's leading, an even greater work was able to begin at my soul level as a result. The time that Dr. Sumrall unselfishly gave to me was the beginning of the greatest lessons of all that sticks with me even to this day, that true healing, especially to the deepest wounds and gashes to our very soul, can only be healed by the Hand of God Himself. The One who created us whole in the beginning is the only one who can take away our pain, heal us and completely restore our souls.
I learned that day that not only is God the Great physician and the Great healer.
He is the Surgeon.
God has appointed specialists to work with Him whom He has trained for many years. Dr. Sumrall was one of those precious few who worked with God. God is training more. The key words are: "work with Him". To be able to work with Him, one must be able to be in communion with God and be sensitive to His Spirit. This comes through spending time with God and seeking Him and feeding one's spirit with the things that are of God. Feeding one's flesh will strengthen the flesh so that the flesh is stronger than the spirit. To work with God in this type of ministry takes great discipline. Not everyone is born for this calling.
A friend of mine who was a well respected radiologist and considered to be one of the best in his field is the perfect example of someone who seemed to be made for the type of profession he chose to make his life's work. He was one of the best because he was always studying up on the latest to insure that his patients were properly diagnosed so they could receive exactly what they needed. It was his delight to spend his leisure time combing over medical text books for enjoyment and relaxation. Not everyone is cut out for that.
Not everyone is cut out and called by God to serve the Body of Jesus Christ in the field of deliverance ministries. Even fewer are those who are called to work with survivors of SRA (Satanic Ritual Abuse) and programming. It takes a special person to do this, a disciplined one and a selfless one whose very heart and soul are connected to God's Holy Spirit. As Dr. Sumrall told me so many years ago, "There is a proper time for surgery and the proper place. You don't just let anyone cut on you. You have the one who is trained and qualified to do the surgery; the seasoned surgeon who is the expert."
I have never known a surgeon to work alone. A surgeon has his or her medical team who work alongside assisting. It is the same with deliverance ministries as well as with counseling and healing. God has called assistants to work alongside the healthy seasoned expert. These assistants are prayer warriors.
Keep in mind that not all prayer warriors are called to do battle on the front line engaging in hand to hand combat with the fiercest of the enemy's forces. Those who have this calling have the heart of a warrior; they think, eat, drink and sleep their calling. They are disciplined, selfless and fearless. When they sleep, they sleep in their armor with sword in hand. When they are awake, they are either training or they have gone to face the enemy on the field of battle. They are all those things because they were made for this calling. Not everyone is called day after day to stand face to face with the fiercest of the powers of darkness.
Spiritual Warfare begins at home
For those of you who feel called to lead in this battle, on ANY front,
it is ABSOLUTELY imperative:
1.) that you have your own camp secured and protected under the power and authority of Jesus Christ before you go galavanting off to fight the enemy in another camp or on the front line. If you can't defeat the enemy on your own turf, you have no business leaving your household open and vulnerable to attack while you go off to fight the giants.
it is ABSOLUTELY imperative:
2.) that you are in constant communication with the Supreme Commander of the operation taking orders from Him. It is the responsibility of every soldier to keep his lines open and clean of all interference. In this case, truly cleanliness is next to Godliness. Not taking ones duties seriously can lead to failure of your mission.
A lazy soldier is a dead soldier.
- Stay in shape by reading the Word and unceasing prayer.
- Sharpen your sword daily by reading and memorizing scriptures.
- Train every day by keeping the lines to your commanding officer free and clear. This is done through daily communication to Him.
- Train every day by praying scriptures. Quote God's promises and what His Word says we are as His children through Jesus Christ, which is Law.
The enemy knows the Word of God. You know it better!
The sword of the Spirit = "It is written", "It is written", "It is written!".
With the Holy Spirit of God, we are stronger and wiser than the serpents!
Have your own camp secured and protected under the power and authority of Jesus Christ before you go galavanting off to fight the enemy in another camp or on the front line..and don't forget to enlist the help of your comrades. You may be strong in the Power of His might, but where two or more are gathered in His name their is even GREATER strength.
Psalm 1 sums it all up.
Blessed is the man that walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law does he meditate day and night.
And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he does shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the Lord knows the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.