Why Can't I Overcome?
"But the children of Israel committed a trespass regarding the accursed things, for Achan the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took of the accursed things; so the anger of the Lord burned against the children of Israel." Joshua 7:1 Israel had had a great victory when they went against Jericho, so they thought they could easily take the city of Ai. But they were miserably defeated. Joshua was shocked. He went face down before the Lord, devastated by the defeat. The Lord told Joshua to get up from the ground and listen to him! The Lord had told the Israelites plainly to NOT take any of the accursed things from the spoils of war, but at least one of the soldiers was overcome with greed when he saw the beauty and wealth before him, and he secretly took some of it and hid it. That act of rebellion, the presence of the accursed thing in the camp of Israel, cost Israel defeat, and the Lord clearly told Joshua that until that issue was settled God would not be with them. vs 12: "Neither will I be with you anymore, unless you destroy the accursed from among you." This is a great lesson to remember before one goes into spiritual battle against the enemy. Don't even think to do so if you have among your possessions anything "accursed." This is a very serious issue and can mean the difference between victory and defeat. What are some of the "accursed" things? Anything occult, anything "New Age," anything connected to Satan's kingdom. One of the most telling stories on this subject is found in the New Testament: "And many who had believed came confessing and telling their deeds. Also, many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted up the value of them, and it totaled fifty thousand pieces of silver. So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed." Acts 19:18-20 Throughout the Bible we should take special notice of what God stresses and repeats often, and one of those things is on the subject of the occult. Any involvement in the occult is one of the most grievous sins one can commit. Why is that so? We see throughout the Bible that there are plainly two sources of supernatural power. We know about God, but there also is another source, and that is Satan. The whole area of the occult is where Satan operates through supernatural means to destroy men. When a person ventures into the area of the occult, God labels that "spiritual adultery." We know what adultery is, but there is also spiritual adultery. Our whole attention and love and faithfulness are to be unto our God alone, and that is stressed throughout his Word. When one attempts to gain information or guidance or knowledge from any occult source, he is committing spiritual adultery. Satan is the enemy of God and man. Delving into his kingdom is such a grievous sin that the judgment on it goes down the third and fourth generation of anyone committing this kind of sin. The first king of Israel, king Saul, was facing a battle that he was unsure he could win, so he went to a medium in the town of Endor, and sought to know from one of the prophets who had died, whether or not he should proceed. He knew this was sin but he was desperate. He changed his appearance and tried to keep his identity secret, but when the medium tried to make contact with the dead, she was shocked and she turned to Saul and told him who he was, and that he was going to die. For his great sin Saul lost his life. And - his children died also. In Deuteronomy chapter 18, verses 10 to 12 God has recorded the many occult evils we are to stay far away from. He mentions visiting mediums, peering into astrology (horoscopes), necromancy, which is any attempt to communicate with the dead, channeling, magic, witchcraft, and more, read the passage for yourself. He ends that passage by saying that anyone practicing any of these things is an abomination to the Lord. Not that the practices are an abomination, but the PERSON who touches any of those things - is an abomination to him. The sin is so great before God that the judgments on it will not only affect the person thus sinning, but they will fall on his children as well, down to the third and fourth generation. To turn to God's enemy for knowledge or guidance, or information is a great slap in the face to the God of heaven. "For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love me and keep my commandments." Exodus 20:5-6 Brothers and sisters, if you have not been able to succeed in overcoming the enemy in your life, search your heart and search your house and rid yourself of anything "accursed." Confess the great sin of spiritual adultery and repent from all involvement with the occult. Do as they did in Acts quoted above and destroy them all, get rid of them regardless of the monetary value of them. Do NOT give them to someone else, they must be destroyed. The effects of the sin and the judgment on your life may or may not be lifted, but the Lord promises that there will be mercy in it, if you love him and keep his commands.