Concerning the topic of binding and loosing, I would first like to address that this spiritual concept is done through prayer and may or may not take a period of time through intercession. While I know that many walk around binding and loosing anything in sight I really must bring to your attention that we are never to participate in spiritual warfare with a high minded attitude.
Scriptures tell us that even Michael the archangel did not get huffy with Satan when he was disputing with him over the resurrection of Moses’ body, (another topic) but said, “the Lord rebuke you.”
In other words when we are participating in spiritual warfare we must make sure we have the mind of Christ, which is God’s will, in every situation. Now let’s take a look at what scriptures say concerning binding and loosing.
“I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Matt. 16:9
“Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Matt. 6:10
To bind up in the Greek means to forbid, prohibit, declare to be illicit. Perideo to bind around one, enwrap, bind about. For example, when one refuses to forgive someone they remain bound up. This was not given as a rebuke but as a fact. Now Jesus told us to forgive or we would not be forgiven so this has a twofold operation. However, we must remember that we need to read scripture according to context and not isolate to make a doctrine.
There are times when justice needs to be put forth and there are times when we need to operate in mercy, so it is best to get God’s will in each situation. For example, Jesus said not to curse but rather bless and yet he cursed the fig tree. In doing so he was doing a prophetic act. The fig tree means Israel, and the Jews rejected him so he cursed them for this so that as Paul said to this day the Jews are blinded to the gospel.
If you have a problem with this take it up with God for it is in the bible. The bible says that a remnant according to election will be saved in these last days, not the whole nation of Israel. The nation will be brought into the kingdom only at the return of Jesus Christ.
“If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.” John 20:23
“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven .Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” Matt.18:15-20
As you can see from this scripture, we are to try reconciliation but if the person refuses to listen then they are bound up. Read the next verse. Refusing to reconcile with your brother when he is willing can cause one to be bound. In other words, he is not forgiven by God and will be left to the devil’s devices. In the Bible Paul turned some men over to Satan so that they could be chastised for their good because they were disobedient and rebellious to scriptures.
According to the Greek scholar, A. T. Robertson, who wrote about binding and loosing from the Hebrew perspective : “To ‘bind’ (dêsêis) in rabbinical language is to forbid; to ‘loose’ (lusêis) is to permit” He says the Rabbis used this function and it was commonly known among the Jews. A. T. Robertson, Word Pictures in the New Testament (Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, MI, 1930), p. 134; comment on Matthew 16:19
When a rabbi bound something he forbade it to be done according to the law and when he loosed something it was then lawful under the law. For example as Paul says in scripture; to bind (in bind, to put under obligation, used of the law, duty; to be bound to one, a wife, a husband” – this speaks of Marriage and Covenant, of that which has been Bound together by the Lord.
This binding has a legal application. Now in a covenant one must remember that if one party breaks that covenant then the other party is loosed from the Covenant which is a legal contract. God said to the Jews that if they served him he would bless them but if not he would divorce them.
Jeremiah compares Israel’s spiritual disloyalty to an adulterous woman who has been put away by the husband whom she betrayed. Jeremiah asks this question, “After she leaves him and “If a man divorces his wife, and she goes from him and becomes another man’s, may he return to her again?” Would not that land be greatly polluted? But you have played the harlot with many lovers; “Yet return to Me,” says the Lord. “Jeremiah 3:1
Deuteronomy 24:1-4 says that the original husband may never come back to his twice-divorced wife.
“because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them, says the Lord.”
Under the law Israel is divorced for her adultery so Israel can only be saved by coming under the new covenant of grace through faith by Jesus Christ. This applies to the divorced as well. Under grace a person can be forgiven for divorce just as God can forgive the Jew and reinstate under grace into the kingdom. Divorce is not the unpardonable sin, and yes a divorced person can remarry if they desire so but should only marry another Christian. (another topic)
Today , binding and loosing also has another aspect in the spiritual realm. The church can forbid something and make it non allowable and can also loose something and make it free from darkness and bound rather to the Lord. Nowhere in scriptures does it say a Christian is free outside of servitude to Jesus Christ. We are free in him. That is free to follow the Holy Spirit’s leading but not free to do our own thing.
“Or how can someone enter a strong man’s house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man? Then indeed he may plunder his house.” Matt.12:29
In order to loose a person free from demonic strongholds the strong man needs to be bound. Satan has many bound up in darkness and unbelief. In order for them to understand the gospel the strong man needs to be bound or forbidden to operate. In praying for others we can ask in prayer that the strongman, the devil, be bound up so that we can see the person come to salvation or freedom.
“In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. “ 2 Cor.4:4
“Some sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, prisoners in affliction and in irons, for they had rebelled against the words of God, and spurned the counsel of the Most High. So he bowed their hearts down with hard labor; they fell down, with none to help. Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. Ps.107:10, 11
Jesus loosed a person bound by Satan. “ And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, “There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.”
The Lord then answered him and said, “Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?” And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him.” Luke 13:10-17
Loose – lyō -to loose any person (or thing) tied or fastened, to loose one bound, i.e. to unbind, release from bonds, set free, laws, as having a binding force, are likened to bonds, to annul, subvert, to do away with, to deprive of authority, whether by precept or act, to declare unlawful, to overthrow, to do away with
According to Acts 21:11 Paul was bound from operating in person but while he was in prison the word of God was loosed by the epistles he wrote. Sometimes it is not necessary to be in person, to minister God’s word. For those of us who have blogs teaching the word, it has even greater impact than if we ran around to every church.
2 Titus 2:9 says that God’s word is not bound and Ps.107:10 “He sent His word and healed them, And delivered them from their destructions.” And again Isaiah 55:11 “So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.”
When we are bound to Jesus Christ we are able to loose the captive free through intercession.
“Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth. And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so. And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.” Acts 19: 13-16;
These verses demonstrate that demonic powers recognize who Christians are and because Paul was bound to Christ this identified him as having authority over them. “Paul, the bound of Christ Jesus [the bound of Jesus Christ], and Timothy, brother, to Philemon, beloved, and our helper [and our even-worker],” Philemon 1:1
Scriptures teach us that binding can be done by the kingdom, the law, a person, and the devil. Loosing can be in the same way. Satan was loosed from the pit and demons are loosed to torment the lost, one can also be bound by curses (Acts 23:12)
We are to be bound to Christ through grace under God’s will, loosed from the law which brings death and loosed from the devil’s captivity.
Acts 9:21- Jesus let himself be bound for God’s purpose.
Acts 24:27- Paul bound by God’s will.
Hebrews 13:3 – Christians can be bound as God wills.
Acts 23:12- bound by curses
John 8:33-bound by the law
Romans 8:12 and 1 Cor. 9:1 loosed from the law
Rev.9:15 loosed to do evil –bind up in fetters.
Gal.4 says that woman were bound under the law to certain regulations but they are now free under grace.
Gal.4 says Do not use your liberty to fulfill the flesh- now that you are freed from the laws binding but rather be filled with the Spirit-walk in newness of life in the Spirit under God’s control his endowment of supernatural power.
Jesus came to set the captives free and this freedom comes through salvation. “And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book and found the place where it was written, “THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR. HE HAS SENT ME TO PROCLAIM RELEASE TO THE CAPTIVES, AND RECOVERY OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND, TO SET FREE THOSE WHO ARE OPPRESSED, TO PROCLAIM THE FAVORABLE YEAR OF THE LORD.” Luke 4:18 and Isaiah 61:1