In building up the deliverance teams it is important to have a keen sense of discernment. To help in this we at Halsey Valley Victory House have been mapping our area in an effort to tear down demonic strongholds over the area and to build up our deliverance team. The following article I wrote for the team to study an build off of. I offer it to you. I would be grateful if you let me know how you used it and if was indeed helpful. Paul Estro.
Drive-by praying & Spiritual Mapping
When we took Jesus Christ as or savior we were commissioned to go into the world and preach the gospel. (Mark 16:15)
If you think about it, what this really means is that we are to bring the message of heaven to the physical world, which is earth. We are also told that the world is a hostile environment to the Word, and we are battling, not flesh and blood, but the rulers, principalities and powers of the Spiritual that have turned from God.
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms (Eph 6:12)
We are God’s army, and we are at war. Yes, it is true that the Bible tells us who wins the war in the end; however the war is not over. Think about a professional football team that is down by 40 points with just a few minutes left in the game. They don’t surrender and give up the game just because they know they have lost. No, the still fight on, and if they can get a good hit on the quarterback they are going to take him out. It is the same way in the war we are fighting. Satan will use any opportunity to take a soul from our savior. Our job is to win and defend as many souls as we can. Even though the enemy is defeated he hasn’t given up the fight and every soul he can keep from Christ is one more victory.
We are warriors for Christ on the battlefield for human souls. If you question this, look at the following verses. (II Timothy 2:1-7; II Corinthians 10:3-7; Ephesians 6) If we are going to be successful in winning souls for the Kingdom then we better know our enemy, and we better know the battlefield. This is where Spiritual mapping comes into play. Spiritual mapping is reconnaissance. Spiritual mapping gives us a picture of the overall spiritual condition of an area and it gives us insight into what we are up against.
There are many examples in the Bible addressing territorial spirits which are spirits that are in control of a given area. 1Kings gives us an example of spirits that control a hill country.
23And the servants of the king of Syria said to him, “Their gods are gods of the hills, and so they were stronger than we. But let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they. (1Kings 20:23)
In Mark chapter 5 Jesus is speaking to a demon who called himself Legion, who speaks of his territory.
9And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” He replied, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” 10And he begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. (Mark 5:9)
Acts 19 tells us about Artemis, the Lydian mother-goddess who was worshipped at the mouth of the Cayster river long before the Greeks arrived.
34But when they recognized that he was a Jew, for about two hours they all cried out with one voice, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” 35And when the town clerk had quieted the crowd, he said, “Men of Ephesus, who is there who does not know that the city of the Ephesians is temple keeper of the great Artemis, and of the sacred stone that fell from the sky?[b (Acts 19:34-35)
One of the main reasons people tend to hear so clearly from God when they go away on retreats, or on missions trips, and why healing and deliverance happens so much more prominently when people are out of their area, is because they are away from the familiar territorial spirits that know them so well in their home territories. This is also why it is a great idea to have some people from outside the area on your teams.
Most territorial spirits are well entrenched in their areas of influence, that is they have been there for generations, and are well versed at inhibiting our ability to flow in the Holy Spirit. Demons love darkness and they abhor being exposed and have taken great lengths to stay that way. It is our duty to bring all things into the light.
However, we must understand, our focus should not be on the satanic, we should be focused on Jesus. Too many people get so wrapped up in demon hunting; they lose focus of the goal, which is to bring the light of Jesus to the darkness. The idea of Spiritual mapping is to expose the enemy so we can bring in the light. We are commissioned to spread the gospel and to pray for the world around us. Spiritual mapping can do two very effective things for us even if we don’t yet have the authority to expel the demons.
The first thing Spiritual Mapping does is to get our heart focused on the condition of the community around us. The second thing it does is get us focused on the realm of heaven. Effective Spiritual mapping requires prayer, and a keen sense of the prophetic. Like anything else, practice improves our performance. What Christian does not want a better and more effective prayer life?
To keep us focused on God and on prayer, I always incorporate drive by praying with Spiritual mapping. I strongly believe the two should always go together. If you are thinking of doing Spiritual mapping and have never done drive by praying I suggest you start by practicing that.
Jesus called His disciples to go out in twos and preach the good news. In Matthew chapter 10 He gave His men careful instructions. Jesus told them to inquire as to who was worthy in each particular city and to stay at their house. If the house was indeed worthy they were to leave a blessing upon it, and if it wasn’t they were revoke their blessing and move on. This instruction is a good example of how we should conduct drive by praying and Spiritual mapping. We should go out in at least groups of two and it shows how some areas are ripe for the blessing and some have been hardened. To maximize our effectiveness we must understand what places are ready and what places are going to need prayer.
There are many ways to do this, and the most effective thing we can do is ask the Holy Spirit for guidance. What follows are some guidelines for effective drive by praying. Circumstances and personnel may require some alteration. These are guidelines and not hard and fast rules. The most important thing is to pray and ask the Holy Spirit for guidance and to be open to the prodding of the Spirit. Secondly, it should be fun and it can be a great opportunity for people to practice their public prayer life.
As the name suggests, as you drive by an area or place, you pray over it. You can take it one step farther and stop and visit with people, and ask to pray over or with them, their property or their possessions. Feel free to invite people to join you on your journey, or to hand out water, food or even Bibles, as you journey around town. It is a great idea to keep a journal of your adventures so you can track your spiritual progress on an area.
You will find, if you make drive by praying an active part of your ministry, that over time, the Holy Spirit will give you a sense of certain areas that need certain kinds of prayers. As this happens you will see that your journal will become a kind of map for what areas need what kinds of prayers. Interesting how drive by praying turns into Spiritual mapping, isn’t it?
As with drive by praying, Spiritual mapping does not follow any hard and fast rules, and should be guided by the Holy Spirit. However, here are some guidelines that seem to be very effective. First of all, prayer and fasting before starting any kind of spiritual warfare is a great idea. Secondly, if you can get fellow believers to cover you in prayer before, and while, you are embarking on your mission, it avails much. If you have enough people, two or more teams can go together, or in different directions around an area.
A team should consist of at least three people if possible. One person should know the area and be familiar with the people, the roads and the history, and two people who are not as intimate with the neighborhood. The person who knows the area best would make the best driver which allows the others of the team to focus on praying and receiving from the Holy Spirit if all members of the team are experienced in mapping. If your team is new then I would recommend someone else drive and have the person who knows the area be the scribe.
The scribe is the person in the team who writes down what is being received by the Holy Spirit and impressions from the Spirit realm. This can be a great confidence booster for new team members as they see first hand, confirmation of what they are receiving. Let me give you a real life example. Recently I was mapping with two people who were new and as we drove up the road I knew we were approaching an area that held a lot of demonic activity including a hanging. I wrote down in the notebook, “a hanging happened here.” I then placed the notebook on the dashboard and asked my fellow travelers what they were receiving from the Holy Spirit. One person said, “Choking, I feel like I am choking.” The other person said they got a sense of anger and despair. Imagine their surprise when I had them read what I had written on the notepad.
I am a firm believer in having people write down what they are getting while we pray or map an area. I use the same tactic when we are doing house cleanings, praying over a property, or doing prophetic prayer. I believe it not only keeps people honest, but it is a sure proof way of seeing how well the team is working together and seeing in the spirit. It is also very helpful in putting together prayer teams, deliverance teams, prophetic teams and the like. We are all different members of one body and we all have been given different gifts. When we work together we end up seeing much clearer than we would by working alone.
Likewise, if two cars are making the same journey around an area and writing down what they are getting, it is great confirmation when you compare notes and see that you are getting the same thing. Now this doesn’t always happen, and we have to be careful not to start trying to connect dots that may not be there. It is okay if you have a session and nothing seems to be coming together. Sometimes we just need more time for the picture puzzle to come together and sometimes we may not get anything. That doesn’t mean we should quit. There is always more prayer needed, and our prayers are never in vain. We need to make sure we have a good scribe who can write legibly and in good detail, so we can go back and keep track of our progress.
It is very important to remember that demons are like nitpicky lawyers and they know the scriptures better than us. Any opening they are given they will use to stake their claim to an area. They will also illegally squat in an area if no one is going to ask them to leave. They will also try to trick us into believing they are gone when they are not, or into believing they are more powerful than they are. Demons have no rights unless God lets them have that right. Sadly, they often acquire their rights to occupy an area because no one has ever bothered to cover it in prayer, or to ask them, in the name of Jesus, to leave.
Which leads me remind you that Jesus was a very popular name, and we need to make sure we are clear which Jesus we are talking about. Jesus, son of the living God, born of the Virgin Mary, crucified under Pontius Pilot, who on the third day rose again and now sits on the right hand of the Father. That is pretty clear, and even the nit pickiest of lawyers would have a hard time confusing that with some other Jesus!
We have started mapping the area here at the Victory House. We already know from other intercessors and groups that the main spirit of darkness in this area is known as the Hinderer. Poverty, False Authority, Witchcraft, Rejection and Legalism are also very powerful spirits over the area. There is also a spirit of Spiritual Immaturity over the area. Several years ago we saw this as a giant baby sitting in the main intersection wearing a diaper and holding a rattle.
In our last mapping session, people who were not aware of our previous sessions said they saw a small child on a tire swing over the exact same area. I am going to take that to mean that we have seen some spiritual growth in the area over the last few years. We see this manifesting in the physical, as the local church has been growing, and the church and other the building it owns in town have been restored, painted and put to better use for the community. We also have the Victory house started, and there have been more Christians moving into the area. Praise God!
Now I want to take time here to once again reiterate the importance of taking things slow. Territorial control spirits are very powerful and are not something we should take lightly. It is one thing to scout out a prize fighter and try to expose his weaknesses, it is a completely different matter to jump in the ring with him and try to go ten rounds.