He will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples, the sheet that covers all nations...(Isaiah 25:7b)...as Jesus was praying, heaven was opened (Luke 3:21b)....After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven (Rev.4:1a).
Heaven must be open not only because this experience is desirable and awesome, but also because it is the WILL of God. Many are not aware that an open heaven is necessary. This is because opening the heaven is not a task for every Christian.
In principle, every believer must be in an open heaven. The area of open heaven in the spirit realms is where God and his angels minister or visit, a manifestation known as Gods Visitation or Angelic Visitation . This manifestation is for a particular person, group, tribe, language or nation to experience anointing, baptism of fire, hearing Gods voice, brokenness, healing, deliverance, seeing visions of God and of his angels, the Throne Room experience, miracles and different manifestations of the Holy Spirit.
Due to the presence of God and of his angels, demons are subdued, wickedness neutralized. People are set free from the chains of the rulers of darkness. The heavens become holy because of the Presence of the Lord so that any person under it is filled with the fear of God. Conviction follows, sinners repent and are set free. Repentance, revival, reconciliation, restoration, reengineering and rebuilding of the Body of believers, deeper understanding of truths and doctrines, and a great harvest of souls become the sweeping event. Within the spirit of man is the love for God becoming so intense, propelling him to soar high in the heavenly places to know more of God and to make him known-- seeking perfection of obedience to exalt and glorify the Almighty God.
When Heaven is closed
When there is sin in the camp, demons come and reside in the camp. When there are demons, the spirit realm is infested and there is darkness. This darkness is the sheet that covers all nations. In this situation, a sinless and blameless believer may feel the oppressive presence of evil spirits. It may not be easy to connect with God because of the infested heavens. One must pursue and persist in breaking through the darkness until heaven is open.
When your worship or prayers are not reaching God's throne, this is because of two possible situations:
The call of the hour is to clear the heavens. If you insist on worshiping the Lord without clearing the heavens, the affliction or infestation remains; unless the Lord's command is to worship as warfare.
Heaven Keepers & Heaven Watchers
Heaven is open because somebody opened it. At certain times, you are tasked to open and maintain it for others. Usually, God assigns this task to heaven keepers and watchers. They are prophetic intercessors and warriors called to serve as the sensors and immune system of the Body of believers. When others are not sensing problems or demonic invasion of the heavens, these believers sense them and go to war.
There are 2 levels of sensitivity:
First Level: Sensitivity to God
The first level sensitivity is for spiritual hybernation. It is a kind of sensitivity that is limited only to sense God, his angels and occasional encounters with demons allowed by God to teach a lesson. The highlight of this sensitivity is the 24 hour connection with God, whether awake or asleep. Being sensitive to the Spirit of God is important for every believer. This has something to do with your salvation, obedience, intimacy and walk with God. One particular capability of a sensitive person is the ability to hear Gods voice. Jesus said, My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. (John 10:27). Without this experience, a person cannot become intimate with God. He may go to heaven because of repentance and faith in God but intimacy is another thing.
Second Level: Sensitivity to the Spirit Realm
Sensitivity to the spirit realm is a spiritual ability given to Watchmen and Heaven Keepers. They use it to police the heavens-- to identify and neutralize Satan, principalities, territorial demons and forces of darkness and sin in a particular territory.
Not all believers are sensitive to the spirit world. If you're not, this is perhaps for your own good particularly when you are not ready to confront or be confronted by rulers and territorial demons.
Insensitivity to the spirit world has nothing to do with your salvation or faith in the Lord. It is not also a measure of your maturity, obedience, or sensitivity in hearing God. If you love God and walk in His ways, hear his voice and obey his commands, you will go to heaven even when you were not sensitive to the spirit realm.
Though you are not a Watchman or Heaven Keeper, sometimes the Lord activates your sensors to sense the enemy in the spirit realm particularly when there is present or imminent danger.
Examine this checklist to understand your insensitivity to the spirit realm:
Many unbelievers are insensitive to the spirit realm but some are. If unguided, they may drift along with the deceptions of the sprit of the age, the new age, or of the power of the occult to fulfill selfish ambitions, feed greed and bask in wordly pleasure. Obviously, the carnal man cannot sense spiritual matters which are spiritually discerned (1 Cor.2:14). But the unbeliever who is sensitive to the spirit realm usually gets recruited into the army of Satan learning the deep secrets of Satan, using demonic powers and witchcraft. They are the people used by Satan and his angels to violently oppose and oppress believers in Jesus in keeping heaven open. If they are lost sheep, you must set them free from this bondage. You must usher them into the kingdom of God; train them to become your comrade-in-arms to combat the dragon and his angels and keep heaven open.
I have received some understanding on sensitivity which I discussed in the article, The Spiritual Anatomy of Man.
Our Father's Desire
God the Father desires that all his sons and daughters become sensitive to his Spirit. Once you are sensitive to the Holy Spirit, you may also become sensitive to the spirit realm where God, his angels, Satan and his demons lurk. This is particularly so if you are called to intercession and warfare. There is so much to explore in the spirit realm and God wants you to discover them as you grow and reach the fullness of God for the final battle in Armageddon. His intent was that now, through you, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms. (Eph.3:10)
God who called me to intercession and spiritual warfare, came to me in a dream, spoke and showed me this calling and task which Zeny then gladly explained. This dream came in the week before I committed my life to God ( see How I came to know God ). But it was only in 1990 after having been revived from backsliding, that the Lord ushered me into intense intercession and spiritual warfare. God put the desire, determination, and joy in my heart to spend long hours of praying in his presence, praying for others that he tells me to pray for. As in that awesome experience of the prophet Ezekiel described in Ezekiel 8:3, the Spirit lifted me up between heaven and earth and in visions of God he took me to the places of people, tribes and nations I had to intercede and wage war in their heavenly places.
By God's grace given me through the working of his power, my senses were activated to perceive and understand the heavens. It is not because I have eyes that others do not have. It is because he called me into this task of intercession, warfare and keeping heaven open. One afternoon as I was praying in warfare tongues, I asked the Father to grant me the favor of seeing what is going on during my prayer. Lovingly, he granted it. I saw swords made of fire coming out of my mouth. (see Revelation 11:5)
Boundaries of the heavens
The Bible says that the heavenly places are where the enemies are but I did not have a clear understanding then. In my early years of being a believer, I did not come across any clear teaching describing this biblical phrase I hear from preachers. But the Lord was always there. He graciously led me to discover truths and principles on warfare, the heavens and other matters which I aim to impart here.
I thought that the heaven of God's throne is out there above the moon and higher than the sun while hell is also out there, perhaps on the opposite side. Even hearing the phrase from prophetic people did not change the thought. I went to the School of the Prophets in Malaysia. There I received a biblical introduction and saw a clear picture of the heavens where angels and demons lurk. I thought that what I had received was enough but the Lord led me deeper into its depth, to discover more truths by grabbing my spirit to journey into different spiritual territories encountering rulers, territorial demons and human spirits roaming to do evil. It was not an exciting journey. The filth, wickedness and pain that goes with evil are the terrible frequencies that I picked up so that I complained to God when healing did not happen even when my faith was so strong that it can move mountains.
Some of us may have experienced the pleasure of being in God's presence in the third heaven. Perhaps some experience this situation without knowing that they have been lifted up by the Spirit of God into the throne room of Jesus. This is an ecstatic experience that we do not want to miss. To some believers, this experience is possible only after death but to the Spirit-filled one who has developed the love and discipline of being in God's presence, this is a reality that one doesn't want to miss from their daily affairs in heaven or on earth. After my first breakthrough in the heavens, the experience became frequent. The presence of God is not that hard to tune in to. The discipline of pursuing and persisting in prayer became a lifestyle. Because of his purpose for me, the Lord lovingly led me into the painful training on how to break through the heavens. But the pain was worth the joy of breaking through the darkness and see heaven open.I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether out of the body or in the body, I do not know---God knows.2Cor.12:2
In astronomy, the atmosphere or heavens are also of 3 levels: troposphere, stratosphere & ionosphere. Science can only gain knowledge from what it sees. But Christians could gain knowledge of the unseen world because God has given them the ability to see the spirit realm through their spiritual eyes. He wants you to have knowledge on these truths to effectively accomplish your mandate in putting everything under your feet.
The Lord brought me to these levels. When I am in the third heaven, I experience God. In the second heaven, I experience angels and Satan and his principalities. In the first heaven, I experience people, angels, and demons. These experiences are not for boasting but for training others in their calling, gifting and mandate in the Lord. There are truths, principles and disciplines that a Christian must know and apply.
It took a while for me to receive a global perspective of warfare from the Lord. My lesson begun on the week before the Sunday I repented of my sins and made a heart covenant with God as the Lord of my life.
Honestly, I grew up fearing the dark. I silently resented when my parents would send me on errands at night because I had to walk through dark places. Ironically, I was fond of watching horror movies. This showed that there was already an inclination in me to see what is unseen in the dark. Until now, I have that strong sense of awareness and alertness at night time or daytime particularly when I am alone or the only person awake in a room or anywhere.
Seeing horror movies was one reason for being afraid in the dark. To some, this is imagination, a fabrication of man's creative mind. Consequently this is regarded as a thing to be ignored. Some Christians generally call this superstitious. With that attitude I thought also that the ugly demon faces and their hair raising effect on me I could shake off my mind if I tried enough. I was wrong. Now I know that my spirit is very sensitive to the spirit world that I see and feel the unseen beings when they lurk around me. The flashes of pictures I see in my mind such as huge snakes crawling on the beam or on the floor, faces and forms of dead people, greenish, reddish, and blackish creatures with ugly faces and different forms are realities of demons in the spirit realm. These are only a few of the things I've seen in the spirit world that the Lord led me to discern, understand, and respond to the command of God, the Lord Sabaoth.
The early years of my conversion, I remember, was a daily experience of the manifested presence of God. Zeny had described this as my honeymoon with the Lord. I also call this my spiritual infancy period where Father God is babysitting me. He feeds me when I cry for food. He rescues me from ferocious wolves and protects me from bully goats or dogs. I was like in a crib. This the Lord showed me when I was babysitting Faith, our first child.
I grew with our children. As they grew physically, I grew spiritually. Each of them speaks of my growth in the Lord so that even their God-given names depict amazing prophetic significance of Zeny's and my relationship and calling in the Lord.
In college, I did not like military trainings because of the foul, demeaning, and degrading language and antics of officers and trainers. I felt dehumanized and transformed into a robot manipulated to obey. But the keen interest on war movies and stories made me enjoy reading the amazing war stories of Israel in different times and situations, particularly the great battles of David. Later, this was augmented by science fiction wars featuring hi-tech weapons and ammo which led me to seek the Lord for more knowledge and wisdom on weapons he designed and made available for his Church. The perception of the world about its future is backward and morbid. Unfortunately, some believers have similar perception. This is a common pitfall among us, an indication that input we have received from this world is more than the revelations we received from the Spirit of God, who teaches all truth.
The insights revealed to me by the Lord regarding warfare principles were given in different times and seasons. I do not have the complete knowledge but I have God who does. This is why our motto must be: No command. No action. We are in the Lord's battle, not ours. He plans and gives us his battle plans. That is the principle in the scriptures. In the old testament we see great battles won by Israel because of their God who made them win. Most of the time we read the defeat of their enemies; it was not because of the warfare skills of Israel. God sent his angel to strike their enemy with confusion or kill them. Their victories speak of God's distinct ways. He did not repeat his battle strategies, which is always a shock to Satan and his evil forces. Their wicked wisdom is no match to God's battle plan for God's people. God's angels execute the judgment written for their enemies.
It is necessary to know and understand the heavens during warfare or worship because these places are where we move spiritually. In Luke 3:21, 22, it says there that as Jesus was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. Thus, this also shows that before Jesus prayed, heaven was not open. This is a picture of a principle in prayer that we must be aware of. Our prayer must open the heavens.
In 2 Corinthians 12:2, it says, " I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know---God knows.
It is one place all of us look forward to. To most of us, this is our final refuge. It has come to man's natural understanding that this place is like a fairy tale scenario full of magic and happiness. But what is the first thing that comes to your mind about this place? The best thing is to go there and find out. To most of us, this is only possible after death. Yet in 2 Cor.12:2, Paul knew the man who went to the third heaven before death. If this man went there, then it is possible for all who love the Lord to go to this place before death. Of course not by man's will but by the will of God. Certainly, this is God's will. For through him, we both have access to the Father by one Spirit (Eph.2:18).
We experience the third heaven manifestation only when heaven is open. While in this prayer or worship situation, the Lord shows himself in his glorious form.
This place is where we worship God in his sanctuary, and where we should receive God's word, vision, dreams, and revelations.
This realm is where Satan roams. Job 1:6,7 pictures Satan's whereabouts." One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them. The Lord said to Satan, " Where have you come from?" Satan answered the Lord, " From roaming through the earth and going to and fro in it."
I believe that he cannot enter the third heaven because, from there, he was cast down to earth. When he came to present himself with the angels of the Lord, he was in the second heaven, perhaps at the gate to the third heaven, no further. This is also where principalities and rulers roam within a certain territory such as a city, province or town.
We sometimes experience oppressive dark moments in our prayer or devotion times because of the presence of Satan and his forces in our heavens, the first and second heavens. Satan or any of his demons is not hard to identify even when he appears as an angel of light in visions. This is possible when a Christian identifies his presence by his other senses such as feelings. He knows how it feels when he is around. Even unbelievers feel the presence of evil spirits but do not know how to deal with it.
This is the realm where we trample snakes and scorpions, dash them to pieces like pottery and the angels of the Lord will carry out their judgment. This is where the mighty arm of the Lord will shatter Assyria.
This is the first realm above the earth. This is where people are. This is also where demons or wicked spirits assigned to individuals are operating. They reside with people and demonize them. There are legions of demons and familiar spirits manifesting in communities, homes, offices, buildings, streets. lands, properties, trees, mountains, where evil, pain, sickness, disease, accidents and death occur.
This is also the realm where we must bear the fruit of the Spirit in our relationship with others, where our character counts powerfully in our dealings with wicked or righteous people. This is also the place where love counts, where we must love our enemies, not the demons, but people including those who hurt and reject us.
This realm is where signs and symbols are seen. The physical environment is a clear picture of the spirit realm. What goes on in the physical is a manifestation of the spirit realm.Linking to the heavens
In warfare, do not do your own thing. The first link must always be with the Holy Spirit. He tells us what we need to know then obey. What God pours out to us is truth. Truth sets us free. We see and speak truth in the first heaven and to the second heaven. Our enemies melt. They are struck as with lightning. They flee our presence quickly. The heavens open.
Warriors engaged in the Lord's battles must link up to the three heavens. Make 3 groups of warriors. One group assigned to stay in the 3rd heaven. The second group to hit the second heaven and the 3rd group to hit the first heaven. This battle positions would be covering the entire heavens not leaving one stone unturned. Straight ahead, warriors; win the war, make exploits!
God bless you.
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