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  • Spiritual Warfare

    For years I have had a sermon roaming around in my head about the spiritual warfire that we are involved in. What I would like are scripture verses on this topic. Please don't just list a number of verses. Try to say, in a few words (I would prefer to read a long passage if I don't need to), how you think they relate. I do have an idea of where I want to go, but I am willing to go in a different direction if the Lord leads me to, based upon what you all say. Thanks for the help.
    sigpicLord, now let your servant depart in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation.

    My Commission in the army of Christ

    Here I Stand

    If you remember "The Fishnet" in Charleston, Illinois, contact me.

  • #2
    Ephesians come to mind, particular 6:10ff with the armor of God being the center. The classic passage I guess, and one in which will get its own mention by plenty of others. But I would like to mention firstly about what comes directly before it, so as to provide the context.

    Eph 5-6:10 is all about how we should live out our faith. We are to imitators of God (5:1). We are the light of God (5:8), and ought to live as the wise and not as the unwise (5:15), always giving thanks to the Lord in songs, hymns, and spiritual songs (5:19). And then 5:21-6:10 are about how we live out our faith in our own households.

    Before we even attempt to conduct spiritual warfare, we must be able to understand what God expects of us in our daily walk with Him and in our households. Not that this is a chronological event in that we first get ourselves right in our households before we expect to encounter spiritual warfare. Instead this, I believe, is the outpouring and practical application of spiritual warfare. We are encountered by temptation everyday. We are tempted to not be imitators of God, not be a light to the world, and to be unwise. Spiritual warfare plays itself out in our everyday lives by way of these practical lessons.
    ~Clay

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    • #3
      1Co 15:57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

      1Jn 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.


      Need I say more?
      Raybob

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      • #4
        I have found these passages to be quite sacred in my spiritual walk.

        2 Kings 5:15-18
        Then Naaman and all his attendants went back to the man of God. He stood before him and said, "Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel. Please accept now a gift from your servant."
        The prophet answered, "As surely as the LORD lives, whom I serve, I will not accept a thing." And even though Naaman urged him, he refused.
        "If you will not," said Naaman, "please let me, your servant, be given as much earth as a pair of mules can carry, for your servant will never again make burnt offerings and sacrifices to any other god but the LORD.

        But may the LORD forgive your servant for this one thing: When my master enters the temple of Rimmon to bow down and he is leaning on my arm and I bow there also—when I bow down in the temple of Rimmon, may the LORD forgive your servant for this."

        Wherever we dwell God is with us. What's His is ours and what's ours is His. Through us, He cleanses the land and makes places sacred. Our lives our sacred and holy to Him. And wherever we go, he wants us to bring Him into the land so that he can cleanse, heal and restore it so that he can speak to others through it. This is what clearly happened to Namaan.

        2 Kings 17:24-28
        The king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath and Sepharvaim and settled them in the towns of Samaria to replace the Israelites. They took over Samaria and lived in its towns. When they first lived there, they did not worship the LORD; so he sent lions among them and they killed some of the people. It was reported to the king of Assyria:

        "The people you deported and resettled in the towns of Samaria do not know what the god of that country requires. He has sent lions among them, which are killing them off, because the people do not know what he requires."

        Then the king of Assyria gave this order: "Have one of the priests you took captive from Samaria go back to live there and teach the people what the god of the land requires."So one of the priests who had been exiled from Samaria came to live in Bethel and taught them how to worship the LORD.


        We so easily forget that our God is a 'God of the Land'. Through His creation He can speak to us or judge us. God will use the land or animals for His purposes to speak to anyone. As Christians (priests), we should be Christ-like and respect God and his creation so that we can appreciate Him in His fullness.

        We too often forget that it is the land that needs to be cleansed from territorial spirits. Our actions can invite unclean spirits into our homes. But if we focus on our Lord God Jesus Christ, He can cleanse our households, our lands, our communities, etc. from spiritual decay and sickness.
        Nothing more. Nothing less.
        My faith in Christ is righteousness!
        Jesus came to save us, His Spirit to change us.
        Christ covers OUR imperfection with HIS perfection!!!

        Comment


        • #5
          Concerning “Spiritual warfare”


          What comes up in my heart is the full armor of GOD in Eph6:10-17. What is the full armor of GOD?

          The truth is the belt of the waist: the word of GOD is truth (Jn17:17, 2Co4:1-2), and Jesus is the truth (Jn14:6). As the belt clings to the waist, so the people of GOD are to be made to cling to the LORD so that they might be for the LORD a people, a name, a praise and a glory (Jer13:11).
          Righteousness is the breastplate: the LORD is our righteousness (Jer33:14-16). The LORD GOD is the word (Jn1:1-2).
          The gospel of peace is shoes: the word of the LORD is the gospel (1Pe1:25). Jesus is the king of peace (Heb7:1-3). Jesus is the word of GOD our Savior (Ti2:10).
          Faith is the shield: faith comes by hearing the word of GOD (Rom10:17). Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen (Heb11:1). Without faith it is impossible to please GOD (6).
          Salvation is the helmet: salvation belongs to the LORD (Ps3:8).
          The word of GOD is the sword of the Spirit: the word of GOD is spirit.

          To sum up, the full armor of GOD is the word of GOD. So, we must speak the word of GOD in the Holy Spirit, if we want to overcome satan, for the things of men belong to satan (Mt16:21-23), and the things of men are the word of men. Paul said: the weapons of our warfare have divine power to destroy strongholds, and take every thought captive to obey Christ (2Co10:2-5). The word of GOD is power (Lk1:37).

          Hope this will be of tiny help! Blessings!
          Last edited by pastor_john; Sep 18th 2008, 02:38 PM.

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          • #6
            There is one verse that He has taught me and I go back to it and rejoice when this happens on a daily basis... I dont rejoice because the spirits are subject to me thru His name.. but that my name is written in the Lambs Book of Life...... It keeps me focused in the reality that we are in constant spiritual conflict... these conflicts and interactions seen with my eyes and ears that have been opened..... and they are a daily occurence.. as you 'tread' here and there on your daily duties.. whether it be work, with your children, or at home.....

            BEHOLD, (look,see) I give unto you POWER (freedom) to tread on serpents and scorpions and OVER ALL the POWER (false-miracle working ability) of the enemy..
            and NOTHING shall by any means hurt you...
            Many appear Righteous and Just because they say 'yes' to Jesus Christ , yet they don't do His Will.
            ------------------------------------------------
            Verily I say unto thee, the tax collectors and the prostitutes go into the Kingdom of Heaven before you do.
            ------------------------------------------------
            The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying. YEA, I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore with LOVINGKINDESS have I DRAWN THEE.
            Jeremiah 31:3

            Comment


            • #7
              "Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 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." Ephesians 6:11-13

              "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:" I Peter 5:8

              Spiritual warfare is the 'unseen war'. If God could for just one second take the veil off of our eyes to see the angels & demons in our midst, we would probably faint. To be aware of this battle is a mark of maturity. Always knowing that you walk around with a bullseye on you (if you are doing anything for God) because Satan wants to take you out.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by pastor_john View Post
                To sum up, the full armor of GOD is the word of GOD. So, we must speak the word of GOD in the Holy Spirit, if we want to overcome satan, for the things of men belong to satan (Mt16:21-23), and the things of men are the word of men.
                Our fight isn't with Satan. He can only stand at a distant and fire fiery darts at us. Temptation is the only scheme he has against us. With the Holy Spirit we can overcome his SCHEMES, but only Jesus Christ will overcome Satan, not us.

                We're playing God if we think we can overcome Satan. I have seen so many Christian's 'pray against the devil' only to be ensnared by his ways- posession and many other sad endings. When we focus on Satan, that's exactly who we are inviting into our life! Keep your eyes on Jesus and being held steadfast by His Holy Spirit will keep us from being tempted from the enemy.

                Cheers bro!
                Joztok
                Nothing more. Nothing less.
                My faith in Christ is righteousness!
                Jesus came to save us, His Spirit to change us.
                Christ covers OUR imperfection with HIS perfection!!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  I wrote this essay a year ago, and it was subsequently picked and published by a youth magazine in India. It deals with the inter-textuality of Samson and David, but I have drawn some conclusions on our spiritual warfare based upon this inter-textuality.



                  The importance of knowing Hebrew goes beyond simple translation, and the Samson narrative in light of the Davidic story tells us something of what we should expect in our spiritual warfare with the Devil.

                  Samson is known as a hero of the faith, yet normally despised among the lay people because of his sexual anti-heroics. Why is it forgotten that David, a "man after God's own heart," also fell victim to his sex drive, I cannot say. Both men should be seen within the same light, as men who the Spirit of God rested upon, but were not perfect. Both men's narratives were meant to be read in light of one another. Judges, written around the end of David's reign, has important insights for us today. I plan to just show some points that should help enlighten the Samson narrative- as narrative- and bring together an argument for hope as we enter Advent season.

                  The first thing to notice about Samson's narrative is that Samson is totally different from the other judges before him. Every judicial calling narrative up to this point in Judges is preceded by "the people called out to the Lord." When we reach chapter 13 though, once again the people have done what is evil in the sight of God, and God in return has delivered them into the hands of the Philistines. One expects then to see "and the people called out to the Lord." But the irony is that the people have NOT called out.

                  The people's downfall is further spelled out within the Samson narrative again. As recorded in 14:2, he goes to down to Timnah to seek a wife from the Philistines. In verse 3, this report it given: "Then his father and his mother said to him, Is there never a woman among the daughters of your brothers, or among all my people, that you go to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? Samson said to his father, Get her for me; for she pleases me well." What is to be done with this exchange? Obviously the parent's questioning is shown to be taken as an ironic rhetorical question. "Why can't you find a nice Jewish girl, Samson?" The expected answer which is not given, "Because there are no nice Jewish girls in the country. They have forsaken God, and turned their backs on Him." Samson is the only good Jew left in the whole of Israel. The people have not cried to God, and not one good Jew can be found. After the Samson narrative the people continue to go downhill. None of the following narratives show them concerned with external enemies, but only with those internal. The people are no longer in any standing with God, and can only be seen as wrong at every decision made. Judges 21:25 paints the picture clearly: In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

                  Situated within this narrative then is this account of how the spirit of God comes upon Samson. Unmotivated by the people, one thinks of the comparison with David, obviously the other narrative Samson is connected with. Saul was the king that people cried out for, but the Spirit left him and rested upon David.

                  The place that the Spirit came upon Samson is interesting. Judges 13:25 The Spirit of Yahweh began to move him in Mahaneh-dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol. Now, direct translation of the Hebrew just gives us transliteration of Hebrew places. A simple search of these names shows how scholars are primarily concerned with the geographical locations of these places. But this loses a lot of the meaning within the names. Mahaneh-dan means literally 'the camp of Dan.' But if we remember that Dan means 'judge' or 'judgment' in the Hebrew, then the entire phrase becomes 'the camp of judgment.' How appropriate for the scene of this judge's calling. Zorah is known as 'the place of hornets' and is to be understood as extreme infliction and pain. Eshtaol means 'entreaty' or 'petition.' The Spirit of God came upon Samson in the camp of judgment, between infliction and petition.

                  I cannot think of a great reminder of how we experience the Spirit than this one. When we are at our worst, and deserving judgment, between places of infliction on one hand and seeking God on the other, there is where the Spirit of God shows up. For sure God is with us always, but is there in the Valley of Death that the awesome power of God gives us strength through his Spirit.

                  Other resemblences to the Davidic narrative show up later also. Samson is known for killing the lion on his way to Timnah. Who else do we know that kills lions? David of course. Later when Samson returns by the lion's carcass, he finds honey growing in its mouth. Honey is the food of the gods, and a blessing when found. But who else do we know that finds honey and eats of it? Jonathan, after fighting the holy war of God basically by himself. As his father Saul restrained from war, Jonathan won a major victory. Samson is to be remembered (or Jonathan remembered) in this light. Honey connects to two stories of singular warriors of God.

                  The lion imagery used in the Bible is two-fold. On the one hand the lion is used as the antithesis of strength and nobility. Jesus is the 'lion of Judah.' But on the other hand, the lion is also the fierce, un-tamable creature of the wilderness that devours all that come across them. This is probably why the devil is seen as a lion in 1 Peter 5:8, and the beast that the dragon gives power to in Rev 13:2.

                  As we engage in the holy war against the devil, we must be conscious of where the Spirit of God will come upon us. It is never in our studies or in the libraries doing research. It is within the camps of judgment, between infliction of pain and our search for God. When we realize that we are but agents for God's fuller power, then He shall send down His Spirit upon His warriors. Although we are called to fight, it was Jesus' work on the cross that defeated evil. We have that hope to hold onto as we enter the season when the most people fail to realize this hope. When more and more people are acceptable to depression and loneliness, they need to be told to search for God. They are already in the camp of judgment, and God is more than willing to send His empowering Spirit upon them.
                  ~Clay

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Spiritual warfare, as Paul describes it, takes place when the agents of evil attempt to lie or spread misinformation about life in general and about the Gospel specifically. "Warfare" takes place when we use wisdom and God's revealed word to fight these lies with the truth.

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                    • #11
                      Jesus did spiritual warfare against Satan by accurately quoting scripture to him that perfectly addressed and neutralized the temptations.
                      Blessings,

                      Road Warrior


                      Proverbs 4:23
                      23 Guard your heart above all else,
                      for it determines the course of your life.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by RoadWarrior View Post
                        Jesus did spiritual warfare against Satan by accurately quoting scripture to him that perfectly addressed and neutralized the temptations.
                        That's partly what I had in mind. Possibly working up som "how to" type of scripture. Some of the things that have come to mind is the "resist the devil and he will flee," "The whole armor of God" (mentioned earlier, thanks). Wouldn't mind finding some scriptures about prayer in connection with Spiritual Warfare. Right now this is just flowing around in my mind. I haven't started to actually wright it (except for the opening, which isn't actually written down but I know what I would like to do).
                        sigpicLord, now let your servant depart in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation.

                        My Commission in the army of Christ

                        Here I Stand

                        If you remember "The Fishnet" in Charleston, Illinois, contact me.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yesterday I was on a plane all day and I started making notes to share with you. It wouldn't be just one sermon if I were doing it, but a series of sermons.

                          There is one thing if you are just telling a new Christian how to "submit to God, and resist the devil" versus if you are telling mature Christians how to do spiritual warfare on behalf of others.

                          Which viewpoint do you want?
                          Blessings,

                          Road Warrior


                          Proverbs 4:23
                          23 Guard your heart above all else,
                          for it determines the course of your life.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Not sure where, or when, I'll be preaching it. If for my home church it would be more the mature Christians. However, if I get my mind around it in time to preach it in Tim's church, I'm not sure. His is a Missionary Baptist Church and may be newer Christians.
                            sigpicLord, now let your servant depart in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation.

                            My Commission in the army of Christ

                            Here I Stand

                            If you remember "The Fishnet" in Charleston, Illinois, contact me.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by RoadWarrior View Post
                              Jesus did spiritual warfare against Satan by accurately quoting scripture to him that perfectly addressed and neutralized the temptations.
                              That was what I was thinking as well - it's about "knowing" what God desires which comes with maturity. The full armor is all about this - note that after we have the full armor of God, we are told to "Stand" - not attack.

                              Also, I would think you could incorporate Jude 1:
                              9 - But Michael the archangel, when he disputed with the devil and argued about the body of Moses, did not dare pronounce against him a railing judgment, but said, "The Lord rebuke you!"

                              Sounds like a great sermon in the making!
                              V
                              I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.
                              - Mahatma Gandhi



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