Spirit of Baal: Victorious Conclusion to the Series (The Spirit of Baal Series)

Leaders: Know that we have authority vested in us, His church, to declare the victory over the demonic influence of Baal. Our strength is in Jesus, in what He has done, and in what He is doing in us and through us, His church, to manifest the victory--the victory He has already won. But, we must make real in our lives!!! Knowledge of the victory is just that--knowledge. We must appropriate that knowledge in our hearts, declare it with our mouths, and let the demonic forms of Baal know they are defeated and powerless against the Spirit of Truth!!

In conclusion, we say that:

“We are the righteousness of God in Christ. There is no condemnation for those in Christ. The Father has given us everything we need for life and godliness and we need nothing and desire nothing from demonic forces. The Lord always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ. We, the church, choose to make known the wisdom of God to all demonic rulers and authorities of Baal that reside in the heavenly realms and we appropriate the victory of Truth that was won by Jesus on the cross and through the resurrection. He is the Truth and our victory. We declare ourselves, our ministries and our sphere of influence off limits to these demonic forces. We give our Father all the glory in Jesus name!!” (2 Cor. 5:13; 2 Pet. 1:3; 2 Cor. 2:14; Eph. 3:10,11; John 14:6)

I hope you have been challenged by this series of posts on the Spirit of Baal that operates in the world. If you have testimonies, questions, or comments please email me. I am excited to hear what the Lord is doing in your life. Be very blessed and know that Jesus loves you!

Enjoy this series on the Spirit of Baal?  Check out this post on asserting your authority in Christ!


Fourth Attribute of Baal: Opposing Truth (The Spirit of Baal Series)

We continue today with the fourth and final attribute of the spirit of Baal operating in the world today. It is the attribute of opposing Truth. Old Testament demonic worship of Baal was based in lies while worshiping Jehovah was based in Truth. Jezebel and Ahab opposed all truth by worshiping the idols of Baal instead of the one true God (see 1 Kings 18, 19). Jezebel in particular had no tolerance for truth. She was very angry at one man, Elijah, who continued to speak truth in the midst of Israel. She vowed to kill him because of what he said.

So it is today. Many forms of opposition arise against the Truth of Jesus Christ crucified, resurrected, sitting at the right hand of the Father and living to intercede for us, His saints. The secular media, post-modern relativism, economic idols, new age mush and various forms of religion manifest this spiritual opposition to Truth. Jesus said "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6). Jesus said he was THE TRUTH. The words of Jesus are not ambiguous or gray, nor do they have room for intellectual banter. They are plain, simple and clear. He is Truth!

A modern day Elijah would have the same opposition today as he had in the time of Jezebel. There is great opposition to Jesus as ‘the Truth’. Leaders must discern that opposition to Truth is demonic at its source and human in its manifestation, for our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms (Eph. 6:11). We can’t simply see opposition to truth as people controlling political, religious, or economic entities. We must see the spiritual forces behind the opposition.

The concluding declaration of victory comes in the next post!

Click here to be taken to the final post in The Spirit of Baal Series, where we declare our victory of The Spirit of Baal.


Third Attribute of Baal: Legalism and Control (The Spirit of Baal Series)

The spirit of Baal is very legalistic and controlling. This is the third attribute in this series of posts. By definition, any involvement with this demonic influence will bring a form of legalistic control. Jezebel, a worshiper of Baal, is a good example of being adamant in her singular commitment to Baal worship-- killing anyone who did not worship Baal (see 1 Kings 18, 19). She was a controller!!

We go back to Hosea 2:16,17 to find that our Father told the people of God that He was to be called ‘ishi’, bringing to bear the idea of relationship to people rather than control and possession of people implicit in the word ‘Baal’. This distinction brings forth our God as one of influence through relationship. This distinction is key as we discern the demonic forces that seek to control, restrict, and bind people. The demonic seeks to control and possess your thoughts, your behavior, and your life.

1 Pet. 5:8, 9 says to be self controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith. . . . Leaders, teach people to be alert for ways that their culture and or their relationships exert undue attempts to control. We all live in nations of laws. We function in civil organizations and societies with rules. However, there are subtle demonic influences that seek to bring control and manipulation thus devouring your freedom in Christ.

In the church this may manifest through teaching the Law of Moses rather than the Law of Christ. It may manifest through leaders using subtle put downs or applying intellectual manipulation that makes you feel like ‘you’re not as smart as they are’. It may even show up as ‘legalistic grace’. I know this sounds like an oxymoron, but legalism can emerge through people using the legitimate doctrine and truth of grace to stifle real debate on scriptural understanding, to shut down any questioning of doctrine, to control all musical expressions that do not align 100% with their perspective of grace. I’ve even heard people say that if you’re not aligned with this particular grace teacher or that certain denomination you are not really aligned with grace. Such behavior is religious control masked as grace. It is demonic at its source, but very human in its flow.

As 1 Peter 5:9 says, ‘resist him, standing firm in the faith’. Our Father is a father of relationship, not of control. We must stand firm in our faith in Jesus Christ, His freedom, His righteousness and not let intellectual manipulation or subtle religious controls restrict our freedom. So we declare that he whom the Son sets free is free indeed (John 8:36)! We declare the law of Christ, the Spirit of Truth, to be the victory over spirits seeking to control any aspect of our lives, our ministries and our relationship!

Click here to be taken to the next post in The Spirit of Baal Series where we will examine the fourth characteristic of that spirit - Opposition to the Truth.


Second Attribute of Baal-- Sexual Immorality and Deviation (The Spirit of Baal Series)

The spirit of Baal has four attributes, the second of which is sexual immorality and deviation. This behavior was integral to Baal worship. In Numbers 25:1-5 we find fertility cults based in promiscuous sex. In Leviticus 18 the Lord gave Moses an extensive set of prohibitions regarding sexual behaviors and concluding with ‘Keep my requirements and do not follow any of the detestable customs that were practiced before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the LORD your God.” The Lord did not want the sexual practices common among the Canaanites, who were there before the Israelites arrived, to be associated with God’s people. The demonic related to Baal worship draws people into a sensual lifestyle and deviant sexual behavior.

This is the most visually apparent attribute of this demonic form today. In parts of Asia we see the sex trade industry. In America we see rampant pornography. Even some aspects of Islamic culture, which are usually quite dogmatic about male-female marriage relationships, have developed exceptions for a man’s sexual relationships outside marriage, called ‘temporary marriage’. Paul the apostle warned believers (example in 1 Cor. 5; 6:9-20) against sexual relationships outside of marriage.

Our opposition to this starts when we individually ‘resist the devil and he will flee from you’ (James 4:7). We declare the authority of Jesus, the finished work of the cross, and the power of grace as our victory. The power of grace in the believer is sufficient to stand against any thoughts, opportunities, or feelings in this area.

As leaders, we teach that demonic spirits do exist to do the work of Satan, that is to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). In the area of sexuality they seek to steal your peace, your identity, and your stability, all of which Jesus has provided for you. People should not be ignorant of what demons desire to do. People must understand that Jesus’ death on the cross and His resurrection gave us power and authority over these spirits’ influence in our lives and the lives of those around us. We simply appropriate that authority and power out of love. We declare that we are off limits to His devices. Hallelujah!

Click here to be taken to the next post in The Spirit of Baal Series, where we examine the third characteristic, legalism and control.


Declare the Spirit of Truth-- JESUS! (The Spirit of Baal Series)

The spirit of Baal operates through culture and religion. In Old Testament times the Amorites (includes Canaanite people) established the worship of false gods and called them ‘Baals’. There were different types of gods, but they were all called ‘Baal’. Death and destruction accompanied their worship.

Even today we see this manifestation in Islam. Sacrificing life is of little concern in Islam, especially sacrificing children for a ‘greater cause’. As late as the 1980’s, Khomeini, the Shiite leader of Iran, recruited 10,000 child volunteers to run through mine fields to clear them. As an enticement and reward he gave them each a certificate guaranteeing them entry to heaven. Islam incorporates violence into its ‘jihad’, or holy wars.

The Koran says "once sacred months are past, kill those who join other gods wherever you find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them with every kind of ambush; but if they convert and observe prayer and pay the obligatory alms, let them go on their way" (Sura 9:5). There is much in the sphere of Islam that is about death and destruction. Ask any Christian in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, or other strongly Islamic country and they will confirm the death and destruction implicit in Islam.

As leaders we can break the power of the spirit of Baal that brings death and destruction. We can declare the Spirit of Truth, Jesus, as the Lord of victory over that spirit! Jesus said "I am the resurrection and the life" (John 11:25). We declare life in place of death. Our weapons are powerful to pull down strongholds of the mind (2 Cor. 10:4) established through agreement with that spirit of Baal. We declare the Truth of Jesus over the death and destruction of various forms of American music, of Islam, of tribalism--wherever they have taken a position of strength. Our Lord is a strong tower who is mighty in battle (Ps. 61:3) and with the authority of the Name we declare victory over all the strategies of a Baal spirit to bring death and destruction. Praise Jesus' Name!

Now that we know how to combat Baal, click here to be taken to the next post in The Spirit of Baal Series, where we study the second key attribute of that spirit in more detail.


First Attribute of Spirit of Baal: Death and Destruction (The Spirit of Baal Series)

The spirit of Baal continues to operate on the earth today. It has taken on slightly different manifestations, but remains consistent with the attributes I taught in the previous post. It may be called different names within the Christian community, e.g. Jezebel spirit, anti-Christ spirit, etc, but it exists and functions today. In contrast to this demonic spirit, the Spirit of Truth is Jesus Christ, the author and finisher of our faith, the Son of God, and the source of all victory over the spirit of Baal.

Here is how I believe the demonic forms of Baal continue to operate in the world today:
  • First, it always brings death and destruction.
That, of course, can be said of Satan in general, he came to ‘destroy’ (John 10:10). But the spirit of Baal will operate through an entire culture to bring destruction. In ancient times it included child sacrifice (2 Kings 17:16,17; Jer. 19:5; 32:35).

In America it operates through satanic cults and the language of death and destruction in contemporary music. Music is a conduit for the demonic to affect the listener by bringing thoughts of suicide, murder, violence in forms of rap and other contemporary music.

In some cultures, there are abnormal violent outbursts that I attribute to this demonic influence. For example, in early 2008 normally mild mannered, friendly people of Kenya experienced great internal violence, death and destruction between tribal groups over disputed election results. Men who had greeted each other in church one week suddenly sought to kill each other the next week. Villages who tolerated people of different tribes suddenly beat and murdered those same people. This year I personally saw the results of this violence in Nakuru, Kenya where buildings had been burned and ransacked during that violence. The spirit of Baal took advantage of the unrest and operated through willing participants.

Click here to be taken to the next post in The Spirit of Baal Series, where we will take a necessary pause in examining the characteristics to discuss the Way to combat it.

Photo: unknown


Baal's 4 Key Attributes (The Spirit of Baal Series)

The Spirit of Baal has 4 key attributes that affect us today. Let’s examine those attributes before we launch into the contemporary activity of this demonic spirit. Worshipers of Baal exhibited several traits that reflect this demonic character.

First, death and self destruction were integral to Baal worship. In 1 Kings 18:28, Baal worshipers cut themselves with knives and lances. Children were given as sacrifices to satisfy Baal as recorded in Jeremiah 19:5. Baal brings self destruction!

Second, sexual immorality and deviation were integral. In Numbers 25:1-5 we find fertility cults based in promiscuous sex. The female baal Astoreth, was a fertility goddess based in promiscuity. Baal advocates sensual lifestyle and illicit sexual relationships.

Third, Baal is very legalistic and controlling. By definition any involvement with ‘Baal’ worship will bring a demonic form of legalistic control. Jezebel, a worshipper of Baal, is a good example of being adamant in her singular commitment to Baal and killing anyone who did not singularly do so (see 1 Kings 18, 19). She had recruited hundred of prophets to support Baal worship and any prophet of the true God Jehovah was to be killed. She operated more strongly in this spirit than did Ahab her husband, the King of Israel. He responded to her control.

Fourth, Baal always opposed Truth. The demonic worship of Baal is based in lies while worshipping God is based in Spirit and Truth. Jezebel and Ahab opposed all truth worshiping the idols of Baal instead of the one true God (see 1 Kings 18, 19). Jezebel in particular had no tolerance for truth. She was very angry that one man, Elijah, continued to voice truth in the midst of Israel and vowed to kill him because of the truth he voiced.

Leaders: be aware that these are demonic attributes. We must seek to bring freedom to those captured and controlled by the Spirit of Baal. In the church we often speak of a ‘Jezebel spirit’ in reference to the above attributes. Jezebel personified the activity of Baal worship. She was ‘possessed’ by that spirit and exhibited a life of living by that spirit among God’s people.

Click here to be taken to the next post in The Spirit of Baal Series, where we will evaluate the first characteristic in greater detail.


The Spirit of Baal is Alive Today

Palmyra, Temple of Baal
The spirit of Baal is alive and active on the earth today. Baal was a false god or demonic spirit worshiped by several people groups during Old Testament times. With this post we begin a series on the Spirit of Baal as the counterfeit to Jesus, the Spirit of Truth. As leaders we must spiritually discern and be aware of those things that influence people and circumstances around us. We must be able to teach and instruct believers in the Body of Christ to resist and overcome spiritual forces that oppose Truth.

The Spirit of Baal operates on the earth today under different names and through different tribes and nations, but it is active!! Let’s look first at the origin and characteristics of this spirit before we jump into what it’s doing today. Baal is a Hebrew word meaning lord, master, possessor or husband. It carried with it the implication of control and possession of people or things. It was often used by the Hebrews in reference to husbands or property-owning men and, early on, even in reference to Jehovah God.

Baal as a false god was worshipped in various forms by groups such as the Phoenicians and Canaanites. The Assyrian’s word for Baal was ‘bel’ meaning the lord or control over men. Bel was worshipped in Babylon. Some theological historians believe ‘bel’ was a pre-Islamic form of Allah. The female counterpart to Baal was Ashtoreth, the goddess of fertility.

Jehovah disassociated himself from ‘baal’ in Hosea 2:16,17 by asking to be called ‘ishi’, bringing to bear a relationship to people rather than control and possession of people. This distinction brings forth our God as one of influence through relationship. Baal is a god of control through possession. In my next post I will examine key attributes of Baal.

Click here to be taken to the next post in The Spirit of Baal Series.

Photo: Jerzy Strzelecki. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".


Effective Leaders are Givers

Jesus did not come to be served but to serve.

Effective leaders are givers. There may be no other principle so strongly exhibited under the Good News of grace and faith than the principle of giving.

Jesus is the ultimate example of a giver. Jesus said in Mark 10:45 that He “did not come to be served but to serve.” Anyone who serves or ministers is giving of themselves to benefit others. Effective leaders give of their time, energy, material goods, and money.

The desire to give begins in your spirit and emerges from your heart. The measurement of actual giving is reflected by what flows out of the heart. A wholehearted giver not only desires to give, but actually does so. God’s grace empowers them to be givers.

Our time is one valuable asset we must give. Ask yourself how much of "your" time you are willing to give to be an effective leader-- whether in your family, your work group, your ministry.

Jesus gave all of his time for 3 years. The initial results of his leadership giving are seen in the first 12 apostles and the 120 waiting in the upper room at Pentecost. From his intense 3 years of leadership emerged a small group of committed followers. From the small group of committed followers emerged the early church. From the early church emerged a church of over 2 billion believers on the earth today. Challenge yourself to be a leadership giver.