The country of Wales, in which I live, has the distinction of having more castles than anywhere else in the world for both its geographical size and number of population. There are more than 600 of these stronghold fortresses, mostly built by invading forces to capture and control the people and the land. They were strategically sited for maximum rule and command.
The same is true of spiritual powers that are constantly looking for footholds to build strongholds in people’s lives. They often operate as negative and destructive thought patterns which are burned into our hearts and minds by either traumatic experiences or through repetition over a long period of time. Such thinking determines our attitudes and actions and determines not just what we think but how we think. They are revealed in un-Christ like temperaments or behaviour patterns and are often characterised by a sense of hopelessness and helplessness. They develop toxic emotions and give the enemy a place to attack and influence our lives.
In the films and the book The Lord of the Rings, the tragic character of Gollum is portrayed as someone who has become totally captured and consumed by ‘The Ring of Power.’
As soon as he sees the ring it draws him and he must have it and kills to do so. The ring now belongs to him but the more he is captivated with it, the more he is captured by it. He does not have the ring but rather the power of the ring possesses him, and his life and destiny become bound to and destroyed by it. What starts as an attraction ends up in his destruction. There comes a tipping point when what we think we control starts controlling us. This is also the reason people keep doing something that they know is destroying their health, their family, and their testimony.
It’s why politicians with power crave more power and do all they can to keep it and find it impossible to let go. It’s the reason rich people want more and more and become terrified of losing what they have. It’s the reason a person becomes enticed by lust and is then entrenched in it. The footholds have become strongholds.
In his book Reflections, my good friend John Lancaster, talks about the ungodly places of footholds and strongholds that operated in Old Testament times, where they are referred to as “High Places.” These high places stood for compromise and demonic influence and control. They challenged the “sole rights” of Jehovah and became places of gross immorality and idolatry (Jer 3:1-10).
John Lancaster goes on to say,
The high places in the Old Testament were left-overs from the Canaanite religion. Our high places are the areas where the old life of the flesh still claims our allegiance. Our own sinful nature still wars against the Spirit, as Paul reminds us in Gal 5:17-21.
The high places are areas where we conform to the prevailing attitudes of the world around us, its values and lifestyle. The Apostle John describes it as the “lust of the eyes and the pride of life,” (1 John 2:16).
What are the “high places” for us? They are the footholds and strongholds that the enemy uses to influence and control our lives. They are the areas of our lives where we tolerate and even celebrate sin. High places make God angry,
They angered him with their high places; they aroused his jealousy with their idols.Psalm 78:58.
This book explores the dangers of letting the enemy have even the smallest foothold in our lives. But it also gives sound biblical advice and guidance on how to break free when these footholds and strongholds has established a place in our lives.
Read this book to learn how to be live free and stay free from the inroads the devil would seek to have in your life.