Wearing Down the Saints

September 16, 2001 AM
Pastor Chris Abernathy
Columbus, Georgia

This morning we're going to be coming from a subject of how Satan seeks to wear down the saints, how Satan seeks to wear down the saints.

In Second Corinthians two and eleven... And this is not our main Scripture that we're going to come from. But it says in that Scripture,

11. ...for we are not ignorant of his devices.

Many times we look for Satan to come in a whirlwind, in a thunder, in a lightening. We look for him to come (glory to God) in some type of way that would make his presence known. But Satan has many devices. He has many tactics that he uses. And one of the tactics that he uses is to wear the saints down.

If you would, turn with me in your Bibles to Daniel chapter seven. Hallelujah Jesus. In Daniel chapter seven, Daniel saw a vision of four beasts. And he saw a vision of the Kingdom of God. But in verse twenty-five, here is what it says. It says,

25. And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

The Scripture says that he shall wear down the saints.

Often times, as I stated, Satan's war tactics come in some type of grand fashion. But the thing we don't look at is how Satan will also come in a subtle and in a gradual way. Often times he comes real slowly. And in his coming slowly and gradually, his plan and his motive and his agenda is to wear the saints down.

When we look at that word, "to wear out," it has in it the idea of reducing a little bit at a time. It has in it the idea (glory to God) of reducing just a little bit at a time, reducing a little bit today, and reducing a little bit tomorrow (There it is. That's good right there.), making the wearing out almost imperceptible, almost inconceivable. He will wear us out gradually.

Have you ever seen saints, every now and then (glory to God), they'll just begin to lose every form of spirituality that they have? There was a gradual, and there's a gradual wearing out in their spirits. The end result is that there's nothing left.

In Matthew twenty-four and verse twelve, the Bible says that for this reason the love of many shall wax cold. What does this mean? It means a gradual growing cold.

In Ephesians six and thirteen, it speaks of the evil day. This also refers to the wearing down of the saints. We must pray according to Ephesians (glory to God) that the eyes of our understanding would be enlightened.

Listen, saints of God. You want to know why you're feeling the way you're feeling? It's because he's wearing you down gradually. He's wearing down on your spirit and your soul gradually. We only look at the big problems and the big situations and the big circumstances. But we have got to understand that Satan is very strategic in what he does. He's reducing us little by little, every single day.

When we look at Samson in the book of Judges chapter sixteen, he had failures just like we have failures. But he still should not have left his consecration, nor his testimony of his separation. For the loss of consecration means the loss of power. And the loss of testimony signifies the loss of the Presence of God.

Samson was a Nazarite. And Nazarites were consecrated unto God. Satan knew the source of his power laid in his consecration. Listen, saints of God. Satan knows that our power in the body of Christ lies in our consecration and in our testimony. If he can get us out of our consecration, and if he can get us from being separated unto God, then (glory to God) he's got us.

He used Delilah. In Judges chapter sixteen Delilah began to speak to Samson. In verse fifteen,

15. And she said unto him, How canst thou say, I love thee, when thine heart is not with me? thou hast mocked me these three times, and hast not told me wherein thy great strength lieth.

16. And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death;

17. That he told her all his heart, and said unto her, There hath not come a razor upon mine head; for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother's womb: if I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man.

It's the daily reduce-ment of the saints. First it'll seem like everything is okay. But then after a while, you'll begin to lose your praise. Those that have a prayer language, after a while, they won't pray in the Spirit like they used to. Every day he'll reduce our spiritual walk with God, to get us to the place where there's nothing left.

The Lord is talking to some folks in here today. You've lost your consecration. And you've lost the separation. And you've lost your testimony.

He told Peter, "Satan desires to sift you as wheat." It takes a process to get flour.

There's a process that we're going through, that if we don't recognize who it is... The Bible says that there'll be a great falling away. That meant those that were in the faith at one time. But there was a gradual reduce-ment that went on. It's not one of these sermons where you jump and shout and leap-hallelujah. But it's one of these sermons that opens up your eyes.

In your home there's depression. He's wearing you out. On your job there's oppression. He's wearing you out. In your church, you feel as though nobody loves you. He's wearing you out. And he's trying to reduce you until there's nothing left. I'm trying to tell you something today.

That's why Paul said in Second Corinthians that we are not ignorant of his devices. But the Bible also says, if you're ignorant, be ignorant still. If you get the Word and you don't apply it, be ignorant still.

He's wearing you down gradually until you won't want to come to church no more. Who am I talking to in this house today? It becomes a ritual. And you do it just because it's Sunday morning. But there's really nothing in your heart. He's wearing you out. Trying to hide things from God or from the saints, knowing that you really need help. He's wearing you out.

Saints of God, Delilah pressed him until his spirit was vexed. In church today, so many of God's people have been pressed, and now their spirit man is vexed. And that's why when the praise leader says, "Praise Him," you can't praise Him because your spirit is vexed.

It's a gradual reduce-ment. It's a gradual thing. He knows that if comes at you and just attacks you, you're going to get down on your knees. But if he just eats at you every day, takes a little bite out of you every day... You know how it is when they cut a piece of cake and nobody else is not supposed to have any? And you just go and you just cut it just a tiny little bit so it'll look like won't nobody see it.

That's what he's doing. He's taking a little bit out of us every day. And he's saying to himself, "They won't notice." Listen, saints of God.

There are things going on in our lives that are causing us to lose our consecration. That's where our power is. You can come through the church doors, but your power was in when you spent your time in the Word and at prayer at your house. That's where the power was, in the consecration time.

He told her his heart. He revealed the secret of his power, and then fell into the snare of Satan.

I realize that this message is more for some than it is for others. Some of us in here, we're going through some things. And it's causing us to backslide a little bit every single day. It's causing us to go back a little bit at a time every day. Thoughts of what we used to do keep popping up. Thoughts of who we used to be keep popping up. Oh, I know I'm talking... I feel the Holy Ghost.

He's wearing you out gradually until just like Delilah, he's going to have his way with you. The consecration cannot be lost. The separation cannot be lost. We have to guard against these tactics that he's using.

We must not let him wear us down completely until we don't have a prayer life at all, until we're constantly so busy, until we don't have any time to spend with Him at all, until we're constantly going, until we don't have any time to spend with Him at all. It's always something else that's more important. You'll have no power, and he'll sift you as wheat.

When Paul was preaching in Macedonia, he met a certain maiden that had a spirit of divination. She followed him and cried out saying... It would seem like words that would get him puffed up. "These men are servants of the most high God, who proclaim unto you the way of salvation."

For most of us, those would have been words of encouragement. But he discerned the spirit that was behind it. Oh, you don't hear me today. He discerned that it was not a holy spirit, but it was an unclean spirit; it was a familiar spirit.

And this she did for many days until Paul got troubled in his spirit. And he turned around and declared to this spirit that was in her, "I charge thee in the Name of Jesus to come out of her."

You see, a lot of us when something finally troubles us to the point where we can't take it any more, instead of rebuking the devil, instead of getting vexed with the devil, we get vexed with the people. We get vexed with the person instead of with the spirit operating in the person.

That spirit came out that very moment. It's a daily thing. It's a gradual thing that he does. But when Paul reached the end of his rope, instead of giving up, he told the devil to get out.

He's been pressing on you every single day. And some of us are at the point where we want to be like Samson and release the source of our power. But God wants us to be like Paul and tell the devil to get out. Don't surrender. Don't surrender, but rise up with righteous indignation and tell the devil that he's got to go.

If I'm going to lose my temper, I need to lose my temper with the devil. You know how some of us want to get folks told... If I could say it like that, is that how they say it? Some of us got a razor in our tongue, don't we? And instead of cutting the spirit behind, what the... Oh, you don't hear me today.

We're more interested in cutting the person. And some of us take pride in having a razor tongue. We take pride in it. We're so witty that whenever something is done to us or something is said, we always got a comeback right away. Stop trying to get the person, and concentrate on getting the spirit that's operating in that person.

Many of us are sitting here today, and we are vexed in our spirit. We're at the point of going off on somebody. And we're at the point of giving up. At the very point where you are, you need to get mad at the devil and tell him to shut it up. "I'm not going to listen to you any more."

Get that joy back in you. You remember when you first got saved how excited you were? The saints aren't excited any more. You say, "Jesus is coming," and we'll begin to yawn. "When?" We're not excited about it. If you can sit in the house of God without cracking a smile at all, then there's a problem. Your spirit is vexed. Listen. I'm telling the truth.

And you need to get the devil. You need God to restore your soul. Don't let the devil wear you out. Cast the devil out. He tries to wear out our time, doesn't he? The Bible says, "Redeem the time," meaning, "buy back the time."

Paul went to visit Felix for two whole years. And in those two years, that powerful, anointed man of God could not get Felix converted. You need to discern when you need to keep on talking, and you need to discern when it's time to pack up your stuff and get on with what God's got you to do. He'll wear out your time.

We're on the course, and there's a time set before us. Don't let the devil wear out your time with foolishness. Don't let him wear out your time with folks that want to be in your company, but they don't want to get saved. Spend only as much time as the Lord allows.

Listen, saints. The Lord is speaking to us today. And He's giving us tactics of how the devil is trying to slowly take us out.

In relationships, people are vexed. And I'm not just talking about husbands and wives. I'm talking about relationships and... People are vexed.

And slowly but surely he's wearing people out, gradually taking every ounce of spirituality that they have out of them. Saints, I want my joy. I want my peace. I want my love. I want everything that He promised me that I should have.

You can get all that money He told you were going to get tomorrow and still be vexed in your spirit. You can get the house that He told you you were going to get, and still be vexed. You can get the car He told you He's going to bless you with and still be vexed. You can get the ministry that He told you you were going to have and still be vexed.

He's wearing the saints out gradually. We think it's in things that are going to make us happy. We really think that. But He's the only one that's the true source of our joy. Because when everything else is passed away, He'll still be there.

In Job chapter two, verse seven and eight, he wanted to wear Job down physically. He said, "If I just... If you just let me touch his body, he'll turn his back on You."

He'll attack our body to try to wear us out, to try to turn us from God. He'll do things do us like he did them to Job-gradually. If this doesn't work, then this is going to work. If that doesn't work, then this will work. But in all that Job retained his integrity.

The Bible says that he is the accuser of the brethren. If he accuses me, then I need to accuse him.

Listen, children of God. You're sitting in this church. And I know that if you don't get delivered, then with all that's going on right now you're not going to make it. If you don't get delivered... (Tongues.) I feel Jesus right now.

If you don't get delivered from this vexation that's in your spirit, then he might catch you on the barroom floor somewhere. He might catch you at Johnny's house. You don't hear me today. He might catch you with your hand in the cookie jar.

He's trying to wear us out. So many things that are weighing heavy on our minds every day, worrying about this and worrying about that. Give it to Jesus. He's the only one that can deliver us. He's the only one that can set us free. He is the only one. He's the only one.

If your spirit is vexed, you got to be honest with yourself. If your spirit man is vexed, I need you to be so honest today. I need you...

Home | Local Ministry | Sermons | Prophetic Words
Ministry News | Photo Album | Contact Us | Affiliate Ministries

True Vine Ministries International · P.O. Box 12134 · Columbus, Georgia 31907

Designed by Revival Fire Web Designs

Copyright© True Vine Ministries International