Time to Silence Sanballat – A Word by Ryan Johnson
I recognize that many in the Body of Christ are in one of the greatest battles they have faced. I see men and women of God who have served the Lord for many years, yet they have been slammed with aggressive attacks by the enemy of the Lord. These attacks have weighed heavily on the men and women of God, as they are seeking for answers. Currently, there is a well thought out plan of personal attacks towards leaders in the Body of Christ. Leaders who have walked with integrity and demonstrated character for years. They have been hit with false accusations, slander, deception among brethren, the twisting of words, and mockery (against them personally, agains their family, and against the ministry they serve). Please allow me to remind you (the reader) of the importance of knowing that these attacks have come against men and women in the Body of Christ who have years of integrity, years of a good character, and years of demonstrating the heart of the Father.
So, what is happening? Why the sudden surge of false accusations? Why does slander catch the ear of others, yet truth seems to fall to the ground? Why has mockery become the standard, yet integrity rarely gets the value it deserves? First of all we have to recognize the status of what is happening around the world on a natural element. Look at how the media portrays leaders that they deem unacceptable. Look at how actors, musicians, authors, directors, etc., mock those who they consider insufficient of their attention. Look at how politicians ridicule those who they disagree with. The level of accusations, slander, depiction, and mocking is at an all time high. We no longer see others in the light of what they are saying and/or doing. We are quick to determine whether or not they are correct in their statements/actions based on our willingness to accept them according to our own personal ideas/beliefs. Individuals are being forced to accept what others choose to define to believe. Yet, the moment someone, who is a believer (follower of Christ), professes their convictions, they are ridiculed and torn to shreds in the public courtroom. Each one of these aspects have now invaded the house of the Lord. Sadly social media has given a platform to the offended in which an unsuspecting crowd applauds what sounds good to them in the moment.
It is very easy for us, as followers of Christ, to pray against a Jezebel Spirit (not the actual spirit of Jezebel, it’s a type and shadow of Jezebel) because there are certain characteristics that is boldly occurring. We could also define some of these things as an Absalom Spirit for we see in the behind-the-scenes scheme to overthrow. But what if it is more than that? What if in our prayers to overcome the attacks of the enemy we are still praying amiss? Could it be a Jezebel spirit? Absolutely. Could it be an Absalom spirit? Absolutely. Though those could simply be the case I do want to share what I heard the Lord speak to me concerning something that I had studied out years before, yet failed to remember. While in prayer, the Lord said, “Ryan this is a Sanballat spirit”.
The first glimpse that we get of Sanballat is found in Nehemiah 2:19–“But when Sanballat the Horonite and Tobiah the Ammonite official, and Geshem the Arab heard it, they mocked us and despised us and said, “What is this thing you are doing? Are you rebelling against the king?” Sanballat (Babylonian name meaning “SIN GIVES LIFE”) was Nehemiah’s enemy in the efforts to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. When Sanballat heard that Nehemiah was making progress on the wall, it made him furious, and he began immediately mocking the Jews. Sanballat recruited others to speak against the work and conspired to attack the advancement of the wall. Even after the wall was rebuilt, Sanballat didn’t give up. His demonic group of followers still sought to bring harm to Nehemiah and those who were aligned with him (Nehemiah).
The book of Nehemiah shines some light on the type of person Sanballat was, therefore giving us an understanding to how this type of spirit works.
1. Sanballat brings strong opposition to what God wants to build through you.
2. Sanballat is a critical persecutor who brings false accusations against the work and people who put their hand to the plow.
3. Sanballat will rally others in their opposition against you.
4. Sanballat will self appoint people to spread lies about you in attempts to scare you away from the work of the Lord.
5. Sanballat will try to force you out of the work of the Lord in ministry.
The ultimate goal of a Sanballat spirit is to discourage you. They will do whatever it takes to get you to quit what God has called you to do. An individual who is harboring a Sanballat spirit is on a mission to derail God’s work through you. Any individual who is operating in a Sanballat spirit is judgmental of your success as a leader, mocking your personal views and decisions, malicious in their slander towards you and your family, and always spreading false accusations through the twisting of your own words. Sadly, this is a subtle spirit that will sometimes come in sheep’s clothing. Someone who is operating in this spirit may even offer to come alongside and help you, but you and I must recognize that their intention is to tear down what the Lord has blessed to build. They do not have any desire to build what God has commissioned you for. Holy Spirit discernment will be your greatest ally.
To all the leaders…don’t shrink back from confronting this spirit with the truth of God’s Word. Be confident in what God has called you to do. Stand strengthened in the Lord, and build despite the manipulations of the offended, the slander of the despisers, and the false accusations of the bitter. DO NOT give them the right to build alongside you. DO NOT allow them to continue to speak into the work of the Lord in your life. Although people can be your problem, they are never the enemy. Satan is the enemy and a Sanballat spirit has been exposed. Be encouraged as the Lord is revealing the strategy of the enemy and know that you have the power and authority (through Jesus Christ) to silence Sanballat!