Breaking League with the Religious Spirit

A man looking from a distance saw 5 men being lined up against a wall while a military commander beat and buffeted them in their bodies. They were being given blows with the fist to the body, etc. The man thought this must be the price that you pay to be in the army of God and prepare you for battle. This man came closer to possibly join and to see more clearly what was actually happening. Then the commander had one of his army lieutenants strike one of the young recruits in the eye. The young man’s head dropped in humiliation after the blow to his head while holding his eye with his hand.

Feeling disgust over the way the commander was treating these men, the man spoke directly to him questioning him on why he was treating these men in such a fashion. The commander, defending himself, replied that it was to prepare them for the real battle. The man told the commander “if that is what you call preparation I don’t want any part of it!” The man walked off respecting the commitment of these men but saw that it was misguided zeal and that these men were being seduced and deceived into thinking they were joining the army of God.

Pictures of Figures and Happenings

Blow to the Eye – the blow to the “prophetic seeing gift”. The religious spirit is all about knocking out the prophetic eye. This is the eye that sees in the spirit by the Holy Spirit and can expose the enemy’s plans as well as seeing the Lord’s heart and plans.

Commander– represents the religious spirit.

Recruits– these 5 men were committed to this with misguided zeal thinking they were doing the right thing. It was a religious misguided commitment.

Young Man’s head dropping down– this represents shame and humiliation. The Lord does not shame us – HE LIFTS UP OUR HEAD!

But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head.

Psalms 3:3

Commanders Response– Preparing them for the real battle. This man was a hard taskmaster representing the religious spirit. This spirit comes as an angel of light manifesting through legalism having a form of godliness. It looks good from a distance. But when you see close up there is abuse and people beaten up into a shameful disposition. People join this army thinking it is the army of God when it is counterfeit. In our walk with God we will be buffeted by the enemy but it will be because we are going against the grain of the religious spirit, not joining his army. These men were deceived into thinking this was the army of God having misguided zeal. They would in turn become abusive and legalistic just like the others.

The Man’s Response– He declined and deliberately walked away knowing that these could possibly be fellowmen that were misguided. Just as Jesus longed to have his own people (the Jewish people) receive him but they would not, so the heart of this man felt the same way as he walked away.

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

Matthew 23:37

In this verse above we also see the war to keep the voice of God from being released in the earth, even the prophetic spirit. This religious spirit attempts to undermine, weaken, impair and its desire is to kill the intimate connection with God in the people through “form of religion”. This is why those controlled by it could not receive Jesus as Messiah and had to kill him. The religious spirit and the heart that is intimate with God cannot co-exist.

Background Meaning for Buffet

Here is a little background on the word “buffet”. In both cases it refers to the work of satan:

Definition: Buffet– To hit or beat, especially repeatedly. To strike against forcefully; batter: winds that buffeted the tent. To drive or force with or as if with repeated blows

These verses below reveal that the power of darkness is completely connected to this kind of abuse and activity.

And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.

2 Corinthians 12:7

And some began to spit on him, and to cover his face, and to buffet him, and to say unto him, Prophesy: and the servants did strike him with the palms of their hands.

Mark 14:65

The Counterfeit Army 

These men who were joining this army thought the commander was the “leader” of the army of God. Quite the contrary, this commander was full of hatred and bitterness. He was training these men in his ways disguised as a leader in the army of God. These men were deceived.

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

Matthew 23:15

These men were being trained in the ways of the religious spirit. When we are suffering in the Name of Christ we know who the enemy is. Jesus knew who the enemy was and knew exactly what was happening when He went to the cross. It is normal to be persecuted by the religious crowd, but it must be from the same position that Jesus had in His relationship to God. These men did not know what they were joining themselves to.

Man’s Kingdoms and God’s Kingdom

When men are building their own kingdom, church, ministry, etc they are blind to the Kingdom of God and in subjection to a religious spirit. We must examine ourselves allowing the Spirit to show us our hearts. We cannot be out to make a name for ourselves, but to make Him famous. There are no exclusive favored ones in the Kingdom of God. We are all His favorites! We all need one another as we co-labor in the same heart and spirit pursuing the desires of the Father. We can say all the right things. But is the Lord really the focus and motivating factor in what we are doing? The Kingdom of God is the business that Jesus was about doing. Revival is in the Kingdom of God, not a church building or ministry. The Lord is looking for people that are all about His Kingdom work and are about promoting HIM. It is about connection with Him and obedience to Him. Apart from Him we can do nothing of eternal value, but through Him we can do all things.

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Matthew 6:33

Knowing the Father

That is why it is so important for us to know the ways of the Father. If we don’t have intimacy with Him then we don’t recognize deception when it comes. The religious leaders were oblivious to God being termed as Father. They were blind to intimacy with God. We must know how he deals with us as children. He does not beat us up to get us in shape! He loves us and encourages us. He has sent His Holy Spirit to help us. His love corrects us gently with firmness making us stronger, lifting us up. We don’t have to look any further than at how Jesus treated His disciples. He was full of grace and truth. He is full of loving kindness. The religious spirit beats us down with shame making us feel like dirt. The Lord is not a hard taskmaster. The Lord loves those who are his own and holds them closely.

In that day you will ask in My name, and I do not say to you that I shall pray the Father for you; 27 for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God.

John 16:26-28

The Root of the Religious Spirit

The Spirit of Cain

When the Lord did not accept Cain’s sacrifice it spawned anger, bitterness and eventually murder. This spirit of Cain is at the root of the religious spirit. It will kill because of jealousy and envy. Just as Jesus came to bring salvation to His own people but was killed because the spirit of murder had held them, so Cain slew Abel because Abel offered the right sacrifice to God out of his intimacy with God. Jesus said if you knew me you would know my Father also. Abel had this revelation while Cain did not. But even then Cain was offered the opportunity to repent and refused giving access to the spirit of murder killing Abel.

The Elder Son

This same picture is seen in the parable of the prodigal son. The elder brother was jealous of what the repentant prodigal son had received from his father. The elder son had access to it all along but because of a lack of understanding of the love and inheritance of his father he became embittered and angered. The elder son is a picture of the religious spirit lashing out at the spirit of sonship.

The Full Inheritance

We have access as sons into the full inheritance of the Father and this is agonizing to the devil because it is everything he always wanted but is banned forever from having. So he looks for every opportunity to deceive us out of our inheritance as sons. The way he tries to deceive is by exalting a form of godliness over true intimacy and communion with God. These forms become abusive, legalistic, principled and predictable.

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.

Matthew 23:27-29

This is why so many end up being beaten up in churches and organizations that can look good and seem to have a “form of godliness” but are full of death and destruction/dead men’s bones. The heart and core of our life with God is intimacy, communion and fellowship with Him. Everything else falls underneath and means nothing apart from this.

Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light.

Colossians 1:12-13

Break League Today

If for whatever reason you have discovered that the spirit of religion has seduced you into this abusive form, then make the choice today to break league and association with it. That means you not longer operate according to the thoughts and patterns of that spirit. It is a breaking away from that form of godliness (something that looks godly to the natural mind and eye) and committing yourself to true communion and fellowship, welcoming the Holy Spirit to fill you with His true riches.


Father, in the Name of Jesus, I renounce all association with the spirit of religion. I repent from engaging in any “form” of it asking you to wash me completely from all of it’s effects. I receive your forgiveness and open up my heart to Your love, joy and peace – Your Kingdom life! Holy Spirit come and fill me up with Your overflowing Presence! Saturate my mind with Your waters and bring me into the flow of Your life. Your Kingdom come and Your will be done in my heart and life even now. In Your holy love . . .

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