It’s important to audit your beliefs, because they are your filters through which you view everything. This pertains to more than theology or doctrine, which we will touch on in more detail shortly. It concerns what you believe about yourself, others and of course, God. This is deep work, and requires prayer along with a lot of thought. This is the stuff people generally don’t verbalize very often, if at all. Along with what you believe, examine how you reinforce those beliefs. And there are a myriad of ways to do just that, especially when dealing with strongholds. Some of these methods of reinforcement make them appear impossible to tear down, but they’re not!
One of the most stalwart underpinnings is the misuse of Scripture. A person can pretty much make the Bible say what he wants, simply by using partial and out of context verses. Essentially, he is using truth to reinforce a lie. Even though the Bible is 100% true, verses used in this fashion turn truth into error or heresy. Error is just that, something taught or believed incorrectly because of insufficient knowledge, wisdom and understanding. There’s no intended deceit involved. Some of those who misuse the Word in order to strengthen their stronghold(s), are self-deceived; or perhaps, deceived by others. Heresy on the other hand, is intentional. This is a case where the person knows better, but opts to continue with a lie, instead of repenting. If you are going to renew your mind and allow the right changes to take place, you must desire the truth. There is only one Doctrine of Christ, and numerous doctrines of men and demons. Without getting off into a tangent, it would serve the Body of Christ well to seek only the Truth the way God intended us to know it. All the bickering over doctrine has actually reinforced strongholds, because pride got involved. The need to prove oneself “right,” only strengthens them. Incidentally, using Bible verses to get your way is manipulation, not disseminating truth. Instruction is one thing, but using it like a weapon has turned many children away from the love of His Word.
The best way to determine if you’re dealing with a stronghold is allowing Holy Spirit to show you. However, if you have a difficult time connecting to Him because of emotional turmoil or a stronghold itself, here are a couple indicators: anger and confusion. Anger is a stronghold’s enforcer. When truth starts to penetrate its walls, it springs into action to repel “the attack.” One quick to way to discern a stronghold, is when you or others to whom you’re talking, reverts to anger when logic or truth is punching holes in your or their argument. Often, this is when one tries talking over the other. It’s like the one who puts his hands over his ears, and starts singing, “La-la-la-la-I’m not listening.” In essence, he’s saying, “Don’t confuse me with the truth, I’ve already made up my mind.”
When you know the truth, you cannot be confused. If you or others are confused by something, it means you or they don’t know the truth concerning the issue. Don’t be disheartened by that statement. God has given us what we need to address confusion, and everything else in life. Jesus said, “If ye continue in My Word, then are ye My disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31-32). Freedom from confusion comes with truth, which means it is important to be in agreement with God, so you can be truly free. Agreement means humility on our part; otherwise, one will never receive to the truth; he’ll keep rejecting or twisting it.
Proverbs 3:5-8Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.