Words of Spiritual Warfare 101

The Three Rs

What Should I Pray?

I get messages almost daily from people saying, “_______  just happened, what should I pray?” I always answer the same, it’s not just about the words. There are no magic words that make everything better. There is so much more! So here it is. Here are the three R’s that I believe cover it all. No matter what is going on, we start here, and we circle back and start here again. If you are facing a battle, these things must be a foundation in your life before you seek God for your specific battle plan.  (For more on getting God’s plan for your specific battle, read this.) 

The Three Rs

If you want to win your battles, then you must never neglect these three biblical practices-Repenting. Renouncing. Rebuking. None of them work in isolation. And none of them are a one time event. If you can get this, you will be on your way to real freedom and victory!


First John the Baptist in Matthew 3:2, then Jesus is Matthew 4:17 said,Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven has come near.”

The original Greek word for repentance, metanoeō, translates to changing one’s mind and abhorring one’s sins of the past. The repentant sinner is one who is in the proper condition to receive God’s forgiveness. This isn’t a flippant, “I’m sorry for sinning today, let me make it up to you by praying a whole bunch of prayers so I can get my ticket to heaven now.”  True repentance is an entire attitude change that says, “I get it. I am a sinner and I no longer want to be. I change my whole mind about myself and my life and I want Jesus to be my King.”

That is the first step on the path to freedom in Christ. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. John 3:3

Very clearly, one cannot enter the Kingdom of God, which is here now, and includes complete freedom, unless one dies to their old life of sin. So this is a very BIG first step. The baptism in the Holy Spirit makes it easy to leave our sin behind, if you find that after salvation you are still struggling with a sinful lifestyle, click the link above for more understanding of how to overcome.

After the initial repentance, you will find you need to repent of sins that take you by surprise as they come up. As humans we have sinful reactions to things and need to listen to the conviction of the Holy Spirit and repent as He leads.  Sin is sin, but the sins I am talking about here are not premeditated or daily choices to continue in sin like the ones that we know to leave behind when we decide to follow Jesus as King. These are the ones that we didn’t even realize we were committing until that still small voice convicts from the inside.  When that happens, stop and repent immediately and receive His forgiveness readily. Grace is a beautiful thing, and abundant for the life of a true believer.

Repentance prayers involve confession, ownership and responsibility.  Dear Father, I am so sorry that I committed the sin of _________ against you. I make no excuses and do not justify my actions as there is no justification of sin in front of a Holy God. I take full responsibility and I choose to think differently about this sin forever, I choose to see it as You do. Please forgive me in Jesus, Amen.


“Therefore say to the people of Israel, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Repent! Turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices! Ezekiel 14:6

Renouncing is the verbal and physical act of repentance.  Where Repentance is a mind and attitude change, renouncing is an announcement followed by action. In the original  Hebrew the word is shuwb, meaning ‘to turn’. Webster defines it as: to give up by formal declaration. 

Renouncing words involve proclamation. It is promise to God with your mouth and an announcement of defiance to satan. It must be out loud as satan cannot hear your thoughts.  After repentance, one should renounce the very same sin. Heavenly Father I turn away from ______ forever. I renounce my involvement in it and proclaim that I am forgiven in Jesus’s name never to return to this sin again. Holy Spirit, where once was the sin of ______ in my body, soul and spirit, please fill me instead with the opposite. (If it was unforgiveness and bitterness toward someone, ask Him to fill you with love and compassion, if your sin was lust ask for purity, lying ask for truth, stealing and cheating ask for generosity, self pity ask for gratitude.  You get the idea. If you don’t know the opposite ask God to tell you what it is. Then look for ways to act in the power of the Holy Spirit opposite to how you acted before.)


Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: …'” Matthew 4:10

The Hebrew word for ‘said’ here is legō, it means ‘to speak or command.’  After we have repented and renounced our sin, we are in a position to rebuke satan when he comes to tempt or attack us.  Jesus had authority to rebuke satan because He was without sin. We have authority to rebuke satan because Jesus gives it to us in Luke 10:19, Matthew 10:8 and so many other places in scripture. But we only have authority in Christ over our enemy, if we are not hanging out in his house. Playing with sin and then hoping to rebuke satan is a dangerous game no believer should play. Get yourself clean before the Lord before trying to command satan to leave. Willful sin gives satan legal access to your life. Ephesians 4:27 calls it giving satan a foothold. In other words, letting satan get his foot in the door, once his foot is in the battle to keep him from taking over is much, much more difficult.  I’m not saying that we have to be perfect, none of us are, but God does call us to be holy as He is holy. (1 Peter 1:16) That means we do not get to purposely walk in sin and then think that we have any authority in God’s Kingdom, because we do not. Check your sin at the door as a way of life, then learn to walk in your authority in Jesus everyday all day.

Rebuking words command satan and his demons to go away and use scripture as a sword. I command you satan/ spirit of _____ (fear, lying, lust, jealousy, anxiety, envy, cancer, pride, death, violence etc. etc. etc.) to go away in the name of Jesus! The word says, _____________________. Here is why it is SO IMPORTANT to know the word of God. It is your weapon! If you don’t carry your weapon you are defenseless against the attacks of the enemy. When satan came to attack Jesus with temptation all He did was quote one line of scripture for each of satan’s attempt.  Anything God says trumps everything satan does or says at every turn. Know it and use it to rebuke the enemy from your life. In Jesus’s most powerful name.

If you think you need help getting to the point of full repentant surrender to Jesus, and help overcoming the open doors where you have let the enemy into your life, check out the Deliverance & Discipleship pages. My team and I are always here to help!

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