The power of God’s presence is underestimated. The presence of God alone has the power to challenge and dismantle entrenched darkness. This is illustrated in Scripture regarding the false god Dagon.
Dagon was the god of fertility worshiped by the Philistines, a people in constant opposition with the nation of Israel. Dagon was worshiped by the giant, Goliath. Dagon is mentioned as the father of two other gods, Hadad and Anat. Hadad was the god of storms and Anat was the goddess of violence and war.
Dagon had multiple interactions with the people of Israel. Samson’s last act, which brought about his death, was to destroy the temple of Dagon. When Saul was killed his head was displayed in the temple of Dagon. The most famous of these interactions was recorded in I Samuel 1: 1-5:
“Now the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod. 2 Then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it to the house of Dagon and set it by Dagon. 3 When the Ashdodites arose early the next morning, behold, Dagon had fallen on his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord. So they took Dagon and set him in his place again. 4 But when they arose early the next morning, behold, Dagon had fallen on his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord. And the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off on the threshold; only the trunk of Dagon was left to him. 5 Therefore neither the priests of Dagon nor all who enter Dagon’s house tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day.” This destruction of Dagon was not accomplished by a human plan or activity. It was simply the work of God’s presence.
People are looking for the next key of insight or a new methodology to somehow confront the issues of darkness in our culture that are motivated by the presence of false gods. These false gods are really demons masquerading as social issues. These false gods can exercise a powerful influence over the mind of a nation if left unchallenged. We have entered a point in our history where our keys are no longer unlocking bondage and our methods are not bringing about lasting change. This is taking place because we lack an understanding of what actually empowers these dark strongholds.
Just as the Ark caused Dagon to fall over and break apart so it is with a Spirit-filled believer who stands before a false god of culture. The Church is the New Covenant Ark of God’s presence. Our appearance on any social scene where a false god is in power and operating can have the same effect as what took place when the Ark of the Covenant was placed inside the temple of Dagon. We need to rediscover the authority of our presence carrying His presence. In times of confusion and confrontation, we have a powerful option. We can simply stand in what we carry and know that darkness is being assaulted by His presence manifest through our lives.
As I wrote this word the Lord began to speak, “You have underestimated My power in your life – the power of My presence. I am asking you to carry Me into your cultural strongholds and simply stand. My presence will begin to shift the environment. In that place, I will give you declarations of worship that will have far more power than the natural keys and practical methods you have pursued. As I did with Dagon, I will do with the false gods that are creating storms of death in your cities. Position your life in a place of evil influence and My light will begin to confront the gods of darkness and topple them from their places of assumed authority.”