John 10:10
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

The Oppressor

Numbers 11:11,14 And Moses said unto the Lord, Wherefore hast thou afflicted thy servant? and wherefore have I not found favour in thy sight, that thou layest the burden of all this people upon me? I am not able to bear all this people alone, because it is too heavy for me.
Have you ever felt the load you are carrying is to heavy to bear or as if the battle is greater than you are able to overcome?
Numbers 10:9 ...And if ye go to war IN YOUR OWN LAND AGAINST THE ENEMY THAT OPPRESSETH YOU, then ye shall blow an alarm with the trumpets; and ye shall be remembered before the Lord your God, and ye shall be saved from your enemies.

I want to talk about being oppressed and held back by the enemy.
First off I want to say we do not war with man. We must know who our true enemy is.
Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, But we do have an enemy that seeks to get us in a state of oppression. Our enemy may even use and manipulate people to rise up against us at times to accomplish that task. That is what I want to talk about. How do we handle these types of situations?  Let’s look at the remaining part of this scripture and we will see whom it is that we battle with. We wrestle not against flesh and blood…but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. That's our enemy.
1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; your adversary(enemy) the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

It is easy to get discouraged when it seems as if man is rising up against you, especially when those rising up against you are stronger than you are. When they are ready to put you into a state of oppression (or) maybe for some to keep you oppressed and devoured. Either way in these situations, there are a lot of people out there ready to give you advice on how to handle your problem, they'll tell you where to turn and what to do, concerning those who seek you harm. But we need to remember what the Lord said in his word. And if we need to seek counsel then we need to make sure we are seeking Godly counsel. Carnal advice can sound good and make sense sometimes, but it can lead us in the wrong direction. Gods’ thoughts and his ways are higher than ours, and they do not always make sense or seem like the logical thing for us to do. This is why it is important we seek God first.

We have many precious promises to stand on in Gods word when it comes to our adversary, and how to go into battle with Satan and these powers of darkness.
Ephesians 6:13-18 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, Do not even think about going into war without fully suiting up for the fight first. Why you may ask… that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

Although our enemy is not with man himself, we know that the devil may use people to hurt us or get us out of Gods will to wreak havoc in our life.
If you are a child of God you don’t need to fear Satan or man.
Luke 10:19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
Well...that takes care of the devil and his bunch, now lets see what the word says about fearing man. We know we are not to fear man, but I am going to talk for a moment about it because many people today do.  
Psalm 27:1 The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 56:11 In God have I put my trust:I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.
Hebrews 13:6 So that we may boldly say,The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.
Proverbs 29:25 The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe.
When the devil sets up people to rise up against us, we are to call upon the Lord, we are not to fret, and fear Satan or man, we are to turn to God through prayer.

Jesus also said we are to pray for our enemies.
Luke 6:28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.
Matthew 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; 
It's not always easy and sometimes we may not even want to, but that is our part, and it is a commandment of the Lord.
Jesus knows the heart of every man, as well as their motives. He knows weather they are moving aginst us in ignorance or with wicked intent.

Our God will also defend us. He will come to our aid, in our time of need and he will even fight for us against those who rise up against us.  
Did you know his word also tells us that he will make our enemies his enemy?
Isaiah 49:25...for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee.

Hebrews 10:30-31 For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

Those men whom Satan has deceived into rising up against us, though they may think they are attacking us personally, they will actually be contending with our God. While they come out to war against you and I, we need to remember we are going into war with principalities, and powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places as we read earlier, and not with man. Just because you know the person or people causing the trouble doesnt mean they are the ones behind the attack.  Don’t take offense and make the battle personal. Know who your true enemy is and keep the battle on a spiritual level.
1 John 3:13-16 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.

John 15:18-21 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me.

God will tell us how to respond to those who seek us harm, through his word and through his Spirit, if we will seek him. He will teach us how to handle each situation that arises, if we will come to him with it through prayer.
Look at these next 2 scriptures, the scriptures tell us how to react to those who seek us harm, and what happens when we get it right, when we move out of a right heart, in righteousness with the right actions and motives toward the enemy that has risen up against us. This does not mean we are to let men walk all over us, but we are still to do what is right in the sight of God. We are to walk in the light, even in the midst of darkness and in the presance of our enemies.

Romans 12:17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.
As we read this same scripture in Proverbs, we will see something different at the end,  that is in doing what is right in Gods eyes, not only does he defend us, but we also get a blessing.
Proverbs 25:21-22 If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink: For thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the Lord shall reward thee.
If we will stand on Gods word and the promises he gave us, our adversary the devil, will not be able to keep us into a state of oppression. We can rise above the attacks of the devil, even when he tries to use people to hurt us, harm us, hold us back or oppress us.
We can read in the bible how other nations sought to keep the children of Israel under bondage and oppression, but when they turned to their God and cried out to their God, his hand moved on their behalf and brought them out from the oppression of their enemy.

When men rise up against us we are to seek our God and place our trust in our Lord.
Our Lord knows how to deal with those whom Satan has deceived into rising up against us.  
Exodus 23:27 I will send my fear before thee, and will destroy all the people to whom thou shalt come, and I will make all thine enemies turn their backs unto thee.

Psalm 91:7
A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.

Numbers 11:23 And the Lord said unto Moses, Is the Lord's hand waxed short? thou shalt see now whether my word shall come to pass unto thee or not.

Numbers 10:35...Rise up, Lord, and let thine enemies be scattered.

Has your adversary the devil brought you into a state of oppression?
Has he decieved people into rising up against you? 
Has he wreaked havoc in your finances, your family, your health or any other area in your life?  DO NOT FEAR!!!
Isaiah 54:14 In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee. Behold, they (oppression, fear and terror) shall surely gather together, but not by me: whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake.

Don’t fear the oppressor, Gods word and his Spirit will help us to battle all the devil throws at us.  Place your trust in the Lord today and when discouragement comes and it don’t look like you are going to prevail, when it looks like all hope is gone, trust in the operation of God and know that he will deliver you from the hand of the oppressor. He can make even your enemies to be at peace with you in the time of trouble.
Proverbs 16:7 When a man's ways please the Lord, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

2 Peter 2:9 The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:

Psalms 27:14 Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.

God Bless
Toni Engle