spiritual warfare

Recently someone asked me what I thought about spiritual warfare. The first observation I made was this: I find it amazing how many people, even some in the church, scoff at the idea of an active devil resisting the efforts of those trying to know and do the will of God. Paul clearly teaches us in Ephesians 6:12: “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.” Peter adds to that in 1 Peter 5:8: “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

Now I know a lot of the problems we encounter in life are the product of poor choices on our part (not a guy in a red suit with a pitchfork hiding behind the next bush), so I am in no way proposing a philosophy of blame shifting or denial of responsibility; however, none of us are perfect. We all will continue to make questionable decisions from time to time. Where spiritual warfare comes into this is how we respond, not only to our own shortcomings, but to those of others as well.

2 Corinthians 2:11 tells us we should be “aware of (Satan’s) schemes.” So how can we tell if we are dealing with spiritual warfare?

1. Jesus said, “When he (Satan) lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44) Are lies being told? Not just outright lies. What about innuendos, misinformation, half-truths dressed up by Scripture taken in part or out of context?

2. Revelation 12:10 calls Satan “the accuser” of God’s people. In fact, the word “devil” literally means “slanderer”. Are believers being maligned, discredited or discounted? Are ministry ideas and plans being scoffed at and discouraged? Is gossip rampant? This is not to say that healthy dialogue shouldn’t occur but, when all is said and done (and this is huge!), are people encouraged to grow in ministry and do good works or are they discouraged and feeling beat up?

3. Romans 13:12 reminds us we have been rescued from the “deeds of darkness” and 1 Corinthians 4:5 says that God will “bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart.” Are things being done in secret and behind people’s back?

These things are some pretty good indicators that something sinister is at work around us, or maybe even in our own heart.

What should our response be?

Ephesians 6:10, 11: “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.”


1 Response to “spiritual warfare”

  1. May 29, 2015 at 2:27 pm

    Asking questions are truly pleasant thing if you are not understanding something fully, but this paragraph offers nice understanding even.

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