Decreeing and declaring are becoming more popular in Christian circles.
Often people begin their prayers by saying, “I decree and declare. …” The two words have distinctly different meaning though, and by understanding what they mean, we can more powerfully harness the power of what each does.
The word declare comes from the Hebrew achvah, meaning “to make known” or “to set forth an accounting.” It is commonly used by customs agents who ask international travelers, “Do you have anything to declare?” The agents are asking for specifics of what you have, what you are carrying.
As it pertains to us spiritually, declarations are what we speak into the atmosphere, making known what we already have possession of. We can declare our righteousness, our salvation, our eternal victory and our friendship with God.
By contrast, decrees are a tool by which we cause the truths of the heavenly realm to be manifest into the natural realm so they become our daily reality. We decree healing when we are sick. We decree provision and abundance when we are lacking. We decree peace when there is turmoil. Decrees are a tool to fulfill Matthew 6:10: “Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done on earth, as it is in heaven” (KJV). Decrees manifest heaven on earth.
The English definition of decree is "a statement of truth that carries the authority of a court order." For example, when a defendant is convicted of a crime and sentenced to prison, he cannot ignore that sentence because the authority of the court order is such that upon conviction, he has no further say in the matter.
The same is true with decrees in the spiritual realm. When we decree God’s provision and blessings over our lives, then anything purposed against our provision and blessing can have no further say in the matter. When we decree God’s peace and unity in our family, then anything purposed against peace and unity has no valid objection or standing to come against us.
The biblical context of decrees is that they are the same as the will and purposes of God. Given that serious weight in the spirit, I use only Scriptures as the basis for decrees. Often we can get our own idea of how things could or should be, but it is not uncommon for the way God unfolds His plans to look different than what we expect.
Decreeing our own vision can create confusion. Decreeing His will establishes His purpose. This is a serious point. Consider the Israelites who missed the Promised Land because it did not look the way they expected it to look. Consider also the Jews who missed their Messiah because He did not do what they expected. Decreeing Scripture releases God’s purposes into our lives without creating confusion or blinding us to His ways.
In Hebrew, decree means "to divide, separate and destroy." This definition reveals more of what happens in the spiritual realm. When we decree, “I am blessed” (inspired by Psalm 112:1), we establish the blessing while separating ourselves from anything purposed against it and destroying the plans of the enemy. When we decree, “My children are strong and full of integrity” (inspired by Psalm 112:2), we divide our children’s strength from their weakness and separate dishonesty and unrighteousness from within their midst and in their hearts. When we decree, “My home brims with wealth” (inspired by Psalm 112:3), we establish our wealth and destroy the spirits of lack and poverty.
The German diktat is the equivalent of our decree and means "a harsh judgment imposed on a defeated enemy that cannot be opposed."
The spiritual ramifications are stunning. We see here that when we decree, we:
1. speak God’s blessings upon our lives,
2. institute the very will and purposes of God,
3. separate and destroy the plans of the enemy,
4. impose a judgment the enemy cannot oppose.
That is the power of decrees!
Elizabeth A. Nixon is an attorney, author and speaker with a heart to inspire and launch others into their divine destiny. She is the founder of the Nixon Law Corporation, a Los Angeles boutique law firm, has been featured in Vanity Fair magazine, and is the recipient of the Business Woman of the Year award. Her book Inspired by the Psalms: Decrees That Renew Your Heart and Mind releases March 4.