Today the Lord wants to open your eyes to see some things you may not have seen before.  I’ve taught along this line before, but now it’s time to expand on it.  Let’s go to Exodus 20:2-7;

Exo 20:2  I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
Exo 20:3  Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
Exo 20:4  Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
Exo 20:5  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
Exo 20:6  And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
Exo 20:7  Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

     For this moment I’d like to focus on verse 3, Thou shalt have no other gods before me.  Many, if not most,  of the people we minister to are dealing with problems they just cannot seem to solve.  Some are dealing with poverty, others with addictions, some with sickness, some with failing marriages, some with rejection in their lives.  But for every problem there is a solution.  Where we look for the solution is as varied as the number of problems.  Some look to credit cards to tide them over in hard times.  Some are looking for the next “high” to give them an escape from their problems.  Some are running to the doctor to try to get well, taking medication after medication.  Some are running to marriage counselors to help their broken marriages, and some are trying to please people to be acceptable to them, and thereby giving themselves a sense of worth.  Many problems, but only one true solution.

   In school, when we were taught about fractions, early on we learned the term “least common denominator”.  Remember that one?  In other words, get down to the root of the problem, where it can’t be divided down any further, and there lies your answer.  Today, I’m going for the throat of the least common denominator, so some of you can be set free.

     Behind every sickness, every oppression, every disease, every strife, every problem, there is a spiritual root, period.  I can safely say that because when we look at the beginning of creation, Adam and Eve had a perfect life with no problems.  There was no poverty, sickness, strife, addictions, rejection, none of that garbage.  But when the devil came on the scene, everything changed, and I mean everything.  There is a “grand-daddy”, a “strongman” you can call it, that is at work behind many things people suffer from today, and that is the “spirit of fear”.  The Bible talks about it, and says in 2 Timothy 1:7; For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.  So right off the bat, God is giving us some insight here.  The spirit of fear is out there working, but God isn’t the author of it, nor is He the giver of it to anyone.  Now, follow me here…for every giver, there is a receiver.  We know that if God didn’t give us the spirit of fear, then someone else did.  Who then?  That’s obvious.  The devil gave it.  Who has received it, then?  Again, that’s obvious, everyone who is worried about something, who is afraid of something, who is sick, poor, or oppressed in ANY way is the recipient of the spirit of fear.

     Now, so far I haven’t ran across anyone who doesn’t want to be free from all that.  So why aren’t they free, seeing that the Lord Jesus came to earth that they might be set free?  Well, right about here, I’m about to roast a few “sacred cows”.  It’s time to make an offering unto the Lord, right?

   There are people who have made the effort to get free from the oppression of the devil, only to be slapped down hard by him.  For example, one who is sick desperately wants to be well, has heard the Word of God regarding Jesus being their healer.   They may be trying to believe the Word and trying to put it into application in their life.  But they are not seeing it come into manifestation in their body.  So they continue to go to the doctor, hoping for a cure, taking the medicine, wishing, hoping, spending their living, and nothing is changing.  So they decide to take the leap of faith and believe God for their healing, and guess what?  The devil comes and hits them with even more pain, symptoms, and oppression, and they back off the Word of God, hoping the devil will back off and not punish them for trying to get free. 

    Here it is folks in a nutshell;  the spirit of fear is working to keep them in captivity.  The minute you raise your hand to get free, he, the strongman, will jump on you with both feet to beat you back into submission.  And he will use as much force as is necessary to keep you in bondage.  If he can send a “private” to keep you under, then fine.  But if it takes a stronger devil, like a “Sergeant” to get the job done, then that’s who Satan will send.  If the old Sarge can’t keep you in line, he’ll send the “Captain” or higher.  Remember, there are ranks in the kingdom of darkness, “principalities, powers, rulers of darkness of this world, spirits of wickedness in high places”.  I think there are times that even Satan himself will come, if his messengers can’t do the job.  Jesus was so powerful in the Spirit realm, that Satan didn’t send his helpers, but rather came himself to get Jesus into oppression.  But even he could not get Jesus to give in.  Why not?  Because Jesus refused to have any other gods before His Father, period.

   Now, I’m going to turn the heat up a notch.  There are those of you who have really tried to get free, and have not been successful so far.  I’m going to tell you why.  You have let the fear of what the devil will hit you with next, stop you cold in your tracks.  You have in so many words said, I put more trust in what the devil can do to hurt me, than I do in what God can do to deliver me.  I have seen what the devil has done to me every time I have tried to get free, and I’m afraid to “antagonize” him further.

   You have violated the commandment; Thou shalt have no other gods before me. You have put the fear of the devil before the fear of the LORD, much to your hurt. 

You must put the LORD GOD first, for God will not take second place!

     I can offer you solid proof if you are in poverty, that you have put another god before God.  If when the LORD (not some man) puts on your heart to give, and you say, “I can’t afford to”, then you are allowing the spirit of fear to run your affairs, instead of the Lord.  You have relegated God to second place, and the spirit of fear into first place.  How do you get rid of that fear?  Face that fear headon, and  put God first! 

     Whatever you are afraid of right now, you are serving that spirit of fear, and until you face it and defeat it, you will never be free.  The Holy Spirit is sent to be your HELPER, but He will not do it for you.  He will HELP.  If you hire a man to help you to clean out your garage, and you tell him to go out and clean your garage, he will say, NO, you hired me to HELP.  You get out there and work alongside me, and I’ll HELP.

   You can’t expect to see the Lord deliver you from anything you are not willing to face and walk by faith into.  When you stop making the spirit of fear your god, and stop letting fear run your life, the Holy Spirit will HELP YOU! 

   We see an example of the HELPER in Mark 2:3-12;
Mar 2:3  And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
Mar 2:4  And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
Mar 2:5  When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.
Mar 2:6  But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts,
Mar 2:7  Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?
Mar 2:8  And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts?
Mar 2:9  Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?
Mar 2:10  But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins,
(he saith to the sick of the palsy,)
Mar 2:11  I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.
Mar 2:12  And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.

     You will notice that this man prior to his encounter with Jesus, could in no wise get up and walk.  But when Jesus gave him the HELPER in verse 11, the lame man made the effort to get up.  The Holy Spirit did not grab that man by the scruff of the neck and stand him up.  NO!  He HELPED him do what he could not do on his own strength.  Don’t you think the spirit of fear tried to tell that man “YOU’LL NEVER WALK!”?  But he faced his fear and took that step of faith and confronted his fears, and put the LORD GOD in first place, and dethroned the spirit of fear from the rulership of his life, right then and there.  And he walked away from his oppressor forever. FREE!!!

     How about you today?  Will you stop letting the spirit of fear be the god of your life?  Will you search your heart and see who is REALLY on the throne of your life?  If it’s fear, fear of poverty, fear of failure, fear of pain and sickness, fear of ANYTHING AT ALL,  then be advised that God is not the Lord of your life.  But you can change that right now.  Bind that spirit of fear and cast it out of your life RIGHT NOW!  Don’t wait till some other time.  There’s no better time to be free than now!  And the LORD will HELP you!