SPIRITUAL WARFARE

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Strategy for the Battle

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.”

Ephesians 6:10-11

History books tell us that from the beginning of civilization battles have continued to be waged between warring kingdoms. Some wars are so significant that they have changed the history of the world. The Bible tells us about the ongoing conflict that is taking place between two spiritual kingdoms . . . the kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan, with his unseen army of demonic influences. Although God reigns sovereign over heaven and earth, He allows Satan limited power over this age.

Are you aware of the world system that is in opposition to the ways of God? Are you aware of the ongoing attacks from your fierce and formidable enemy? Although many are blind to the fact that there is even a battle, the God of the Bible says that the battle has already been won!

In every major army, soldiers receive regulation equipment. They must be thoroughly prepared for battle from the top of their heads to the soles of their shoes. As for spiritual warfare, the ultimate victory is already God’s, but we are called to be soldiers of Christ in this present battle against evil. We too have been thoroughly equipped with regulation battle gear. Our part is to put it on.

 

What Is Spiritual Warfare?

Spiritual warfare is the ongoing conflict against the human race with its enemies—the world, the flesh, and Satan—for the purposes of…

  • keeping non-Christians from coming into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ
  • rendering Christians ineffective

"As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the w ays of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air[Satan], the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature [the flesh]and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath.”

Ephesians 2:1–3

“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

1 Peter 5:8

What Are the 3 Enemies?

The World...

is that invisible system of ideas, activities, and purposes that Satan rules in opposition to God and His rule.

“You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God” 

(James 4:4).

 

The Flesh

The “power of sin” (Romans chapter 7) is at work through the flesh of a person, whether saved or unsaved, and is demonstrated by going one’s own way instead of God’s way. 

“I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature [flesh]. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out” (Romans 7:18).

 

The Devil

(Satan) is the supreme adversary of God and is leader of the spiritual forces of evil.

“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels’” 

(Matthew 25:41).

 

The Mind

The Battle Begins in the Mind

  • A thought (a lie) enters the mind from worldly, fleshly, or satanic influences.
  • A choice is made by the will to accept or reject the thought.
  • A habit is formed when continual choices are made to act on the thought.
  • A stronghold is developed when a habit becomes a deeply rooted, controlling behavior.

“‘In your anger do not sin’: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.”

(Ephesians 4:26–27)

The Root Cause of Defeat

Wrong Beliefs
  • Investment in the World:

“Happiness is my highest goal, and that is measured by the world’s standards of success.”

(James 4:4)

  • Indulgence of the Flesh:
    • “I have a right to get what I want.” (Proverbs 11:6)
    • Ignorance of Satan’s Power:

“The devil is only a mythical figure believed in by the uneducated and by religious zealots.” 

(1 John 3:8)

 
Right Belief

“As I rely on Christ’s life within me, I have His power to defeat any satanic attack or spiritual stronghold. I will be vigilant to reject any thought that would entice me to trust in anything apart from the truths of God.”

“One who is wise can go up against the city of the mighty and pull down the stronghold in which they trust.”

(Proverbs 21:22)

 

Stand against Satan 

  • Satan is not omnipotent. (1 John 4:4) 
  • Satan is not omnipresent. (Job 1:7) 
  • Satan is not omniscient. (Ezekiel 28:17) 
  • Satan has been confined to boundaries. (Job 1:12) 
  • Satan can’t overcome resistance. (James 4:7) 
  • Satan hates the blood of Christ. (Revelation 12:11) 
  • Satan is defeated by positive testimonies. (Revelation 12:11) 

“... stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then.”  (Ephesians 6:13–14)

  Questions and Answers 

“When will this spiritual battle be over?” 

For now, the kingdom of God and this present age coexist. A time will come when God eradicates all evil and judges Satan and his army—throwing them into the lake of fire. 

(Read Revelation 20:7–21:8.) This will be the end of ways as they are now and the beginning of a new order.

“‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” 

(Revelation 21:4)

 

“I’m constantly defeated in my thought life. How can I gain victory?” 

Realize first that Satan is called “the father of lies,” and he delights in defeating you. Read through the book of Philippians. Then take an inventory of every defeating thought and what you should be thinking instead. Write out your replacement thoughts. Then, as thoughts come, if they do not line up with Philippians 4:6–8, change your thinking!  

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable— if anything is excellent or praiseworthy— think about such things.” 

(Philippians 4:8) 

 

“If I sense that my loved ones are under spiritual attack, how do I pray for them? Will my prayers have any real effect?” 

Yes, your prayers can have impact. Specifically pray that their faith will not fail. Jesus gave us this example when He prayed for His close friend Simon Peter. 

“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.” 

(Luke 22:31–32)

 

The Spiritual Sword of Scripture 

  • “Thank You, Father, that I am Your child and that Christ, who is in me, is greater than Satan, who is in the world." (1 John 4:4) 
  • I acknowledge that Satan is a defeated enemy. He was defeated when the blood of Christ was shed at Calvary. His blood paid for the guilt of my sins. I am a child of God, and Satan has no authority over me. (Revelation 12:11) 
  • I’ve been bought with a price. My body is not my own. It belongs to Christ. (1 Corinthians 6:19–20)
  • I refuse all thoughts that are not from God, and I resist Satan and his power. (James 4:7) 
  • As I stand in the full armor of God, I ask You to bind Satan and his demonic realm from any influence over me. (Ephesians 6:10–11) 
  • Just as You put a hedge of protection around Job, I ask You to put a hedge of protection completely around me for my good and for Your glory. (Job 1:10) 
  • "In the precious name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.” 

 

Key Verse to Learn

“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one [Jesus] who is in you is greater than the one [Satan] who is in the world.”

(1 John 4:4)

 

Key Passage to Read 

Ephesians 6:10–18

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