September 18, 2012
We often do not think about spiritual warfare and hence that explains why we do so poorly when we are engaged by the enemy. Doing battle with demons is something belonging to the past or what goes on in dark parts of Africa or among nations where voodoo priests cause fear in the ignorant. Yet, nothing in Scripture indicates that all the demons were locked up at some point in time or banished to only third world countries. Indeed, from the character of their leader it would seem that being worshiped or listened to by those who profess to be wise would be a more desirable ego trip though laughing at the ignorant is great fun. Like it, believe it, or not, we are in a war zone and we can learn how to do battle or get beat up by the enemy who takes prisoners of the unsaved and torments the saved who think salvation is one great prosperous joy ride to Glory.
Most preachers have a three point sermon with each point starting with the same letter or word. I am a tad different as I have four, but sometimes God likes to challenge our norms. We all know satan is a liar and a manipulator and has been since the conversation in the Garden with Adam and Eve. He twisted the truth and got them to agree with him and his lie instead of keeping their faith in God and agreeing with His truth. Thus we have the madhouse called earth being run by the inmates instead of the Great Physician.
So our first response to the lies of satan should be to put forth our shield of faith from Ephesians 6 and agree with the truth, not the lies. To do this, we must first “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2 Tim 2:15 KJV If you do not know the truth, it will be impossible to agree with it. This means we need to seek sound doctrine. I know that doctrine has almost become anathema and a pariah, but it is essential in God’s eyes. This will take time to learn and more than what you will get from just reading quotes from Spurgeon or the bite size tidbits in the fifteen minute devotionals.
You must come to the faith that the Bible is God’s Word and the only authority for your life and the only reliable source of truth for your soul and life. Good men make mistakes and while all truth is God’s truth that truth is often twisted or tweaked for some man’s or group’s agenda. You must be a Berean and always search to see if what you hear, even if someone is using Scripture, is God’s truth or man’s doctrine. That includes this sermon as well. If you see I am error, do not leave me in my ignorance, but bring Scripture and not your feelings, desires or quotes from Granny Saint or Dr. Goodwords from some media broadcast.
Once you agree with God and that His Word is truth and you know sound doctrine then you can answer with the truth. When the devil’s emissaries hit you with their best shot you reply with the truth that relates to the lie they are trying to feed you. If they start that “Yea, hath God said?” stuff you can remind them that you know what doubting God’s Word has cost mankind over the centuries and that you are not going to fall for that. You answer with a passage like “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” John 17:17 KJV
He will go for your weaknesses or where you have been hurt by man. Find passages that speak the truth about who you are in Christ if you have been browbeaten from childhood that you are useless and unlovable. “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:” 1 Peter 2:9 KJV Get a concordance and look up the truth about Him and your position in Him. If you have a specific area of weakness when it comes to sin find verses that speak to that sin and meditate upon why that thing is sin.
As soon you answer with the truth then proceed to attack with the truth. The more verses you know about a particular area the more ammunition you have and you can just unleash them like a machine gun. When you are done with that then start using verses that speak to the defeat of satan and especially verses dealing with the blood of Christ and the resurrection. The old saying about reminding the devil of his future when he throws up your past can come to play here. You can turn the attack into a praise session as you let the devil know that you are fully aware of your sin and how Christ has wiped the record clean and as a forgiven child of God you will spend eternity with Him whereas the demon attacking you is a dead man walking with no hope of reprieve or pardon and will spend eternity in Hell with his master.
You do not want to rant and rave or “beat up on the devil” as some say because even Michael the Archangel has to tell the devil that the Lord rebukes him. Jude 9 Use Scripture to attack, not some haughty idea that you are the one doing the whipping. Your authority comes from God and His Word used in the Spirit, not the flesh. Many Christians get arrogant like the seven sons of Sceva and got thumped because in the flesh the demons do not know you as having any authority over them and they will not take kindly to you impudence. We are more than conquerors through Christ, but it is through Him and we need to attack accordingly. “But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:6-7 KJV Be sure to be in submission to God or there will be no fleeing of the enemy.
When you have been successful in the battle you will then advance with the truth because your faith will be strengthened. You will see the truth in action. This prepares you for the next time for they will only retreat for a season. They will regroup and come at you some other way. Never think you have won the war. Your war is over when the Rapture happens or you die. Until then, you must be diligent and not think you can just go AWOL or go on a permanent R&R after you enjoy one victory. Jesus has already won the war, but just like WWII, peace treaties may have been signed on a certain date but there were still pockets of resistance in both the European and Pacific theaters by soldiers who did not get the word that a truce was signed, did not believe it or just chose to fight to the death. So also are the demons going to fight us until the last moment. They know they have lost, but they will take all they can with them to Hell and that means they have to keep you from being fruitful as well as just attack you out of sheer hatred because you belong to God and cannot be lost.
You will advance in your faith with the truth as you come to see the love of Christ, His grace and power manifest in your life. It will advance your understanding of the Word, the world and the world to come. This will give you boldness and gratitude for having the opportunity to serve Him even if it means attacks from the enemy. You may even start looking forward to the next one just to see what God’s power is going to do. Indeed, if you are being attacked you must be doing something dangerous to the devil’s kingdom or getting nearer to God. You get nearer to God the more He can use you and that doesn’t mean anything good to the enemy so he will attack.
Not all victories appear to be so and you can still advance even if you stand still for to not give up ground in a battle is just as much a victory as gaining. You may exit the battle wounded or weary and yet having stood your ground you are victorious. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” Eph 6:12-13 KJV
So many Christians have failed to stand and have compromised with the world. They have collaborated with the enemy and are defeated, but do not know it. They think because they have semblance of peace they think they have won when they are really under the occupation of the enemy. Others rant, rave and do bizarre things thinking they have the power when the demons are just laughing at them like a court jester. It is time to agree with the truth, answer with the truth, attack with the truth and then advance with the truth taking back ground that was lost while knowing that some days we will just stand holding our ground. The battle will come. Will you be ready? He gave us the victory. Let’s walk in that victory using this battle plan or one God has for you. If it is different, that is fine. Every battle may require a change in plans, but have a basic one. Don’t be statistic or a victim. Be a conqueror! Maranatha!!