“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look afterorphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” —James 1:27 NIV
In April, I was pondering the state of the church and heard the Spirit say, “You must break off the religious spirit.” My immediate thought was who, me? Around the same time another prophetic minister, Lana Vawser (Lana Vawser Ministries) heard a similar word in a dream “I am about to deal with and break the spirit of religion.” What I’ve come to understand is that I must be mindful not to allow a spirit of religion to hinder me from sharing the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
This spirit must be broken or bound if the church is to be effective in fulfilling God’s purposes. The Lord is going to deal with the religious spirit in this new era bringing forth His true ecclesia. Shining the light on religious mindsets and exposing the spirit of religion in the church.
Satan is a master of deception. Satan’s plan is to outwit Christians through a spirit of deception. I am not a spiritual authority on this subject, but I do believe that I have clearly heard from the Lord on this issue. My goal is to warn others against this spirit.
If the Spirit is saying to the churches that we must break or bind the spirit of religion, which I believe it is, God will supernaturally show us the direction we need to take to do so.
I believe that the religious spirit has succeeded in keeping much of the church ignorant of Satan’s devices through the years, and therefore taken advantage of many, as the Bible said it would. Apostle Paul writes, “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.” —2 Corinthians 2:11 KJV
Scripture also says, “Be sober-minded and alert. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” —1 Peter 5:8 NIV
The spirit of religion has already begun a last-ditch offensive to deceive multitudes and to divert them from true faith in the only head of the Church, Jesus Christ. As the war intensifies, we can expect religious deception to become increasingly more common and more intense. —Chuck Pierce, The Future War of the Church
What is a religious spirit?
The Religious Spirit is one of most clever/deceptive/seductive agents of Satan. As I have been studying this, I’ve come across a few definitions I believe will help us discern this spirit and break free of it:
“…the spirit of religion is an agent of Satan assigned to prevent change and to maintain the status quo by using religious devices.” Freedom From The Religious Spirit, C. Peter Wagner
“A religious spirit is a demon which seeks to substitute religious activity for the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Its primary objective is to have the church “holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power”, Overcoming the Religious Spirit, Rick Joyner
The spirit of religion in Jesus’ day …
The religious spirit is also known as the Pharisaical spirit —- it is the “leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees” —Matthew 16:6. There’s need for grounding in the word to avoid slipping into error. Jesus told the Pharisees that they were walking in error because of their ignorance of scripture. “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God.” —Matthew. 22:29 NIV
They had “head knowledge” of the word of God, but they were spiritually ignorant. You may wonder how is this possible? They incorporated their ideas and opinions into the gospel. Many pastors are doing the same thing today, but God isn’t under any obligation to honor man’s opinions.
Many people start off well, as in the case of the believers at Galatia, but end up in a serious mixture of the gospel and teachings based on the opinions of man. “You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified.” —Galatians 3:1 NIV
Satan’s strategy is to make us proud—even proud of good things, such as how much we read our Bibles, witness, or feed the poor. He knows that if we do the will of God in pride, our work will be counterproductive and could ultimately even work toward our fall.
The religious spirit is oppressive. At times when ministering, I can sense resistance when this spirit is present. This agent of darkness has been deceiving both Christians and non-Christians alike.
A religious spirit is a force that tries to get you to act pious, self-righteous, or super spiritual. People influenced by the spirit of religion have an outward appearance of holiness, but are self-righteous in their innermost beings.
If the spirit of religion could influence Christ’s chosen disciples, then none of us are immune. Believers need to understand the purpose of the religious spirit and why it is so dangerous. Religious spirits will try to infiltrate your life and bind your freedom in the Holy Spirit.
This religious spirit is not just an attitude of religiosity. It is actually an evil spirit that must be resisted, bound and cast out.
Prayer Against the Spirit of Religion
Father, thank You for enlightening me about the spirit of religion. I take my authority back from the devil. I take my authority and I command the spirit of religion and witchcraft to loose me now. I bind you and strip you of your power. I invite the host of heaven, the warrior angels to torment you and punish you for your assault against my life and my family. You will go to the place the Lord Jesus sends you and never return – in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth!
In His Service,