Contend Earnestly: Spiritual Warfare, Pt. 2

Friday, June 09, 2006

Spiritual Warfare, Pt. 2

Seth and I were exchanging emails this week, and we both agreed that there have been some tough things to deal with over the last couple of days in our individual lives. Then he commented that it's possible that the enemy was trying to throw us off track for the upcoming time we will be gathering to witness at Maple Valley Days. Even after I had been thinking on the subject of spiritual warfare, I had not even connected these two thoughts as a possibility. The hard part is that cannot know for sure. But Seth's thought is a very real possibility.

Knowing that this battle is real, and the enemy is readily close, and that the work of God is always opposed, and that these forces that oppose are formidable and very strong, it requires that we understand the Biblical definition of what the battle is, and what the rules of engagement are.

The first passage that comes to mind when thinking about spiritual warfare is Ephesians 6:10-20. The phrase I want to focus on is in verse 11:

"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood..."

1) It is a struggle: While we should not fear these forces an longer, since we are in Christ (for greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world (1 John 4:4)), nevertheless it is a struggle. And one we need to be constantly vigilant to engage in. We will discuss later what the Scripture ascribes and limits how we are to engage in this battle.

2) It is "our" struggle: There are very few believers that warrant the attention of Satan himself, personally. He is not omnipresent, so must focus his attacks one place/person/event at time. Knowing this, and knowing that he can and does dispatch demons to do his work in world, we need to remember that we cannot isolate ourselves and expect to have victory in this struggle. It is "our" struggle, corporately, as believers. Let us not think arrogantly that we have the strength in and of ourselves to engage successfully in this battle. If we often lose the battle with our own flesh on a daily basis, then we cannot expect to win a greater struggle with powerful, intelligent fallen angels who are greater than we are (Heb 2:6-7).

More to come....


Seth McBee said...

This could also be referenced in James 5 when it says, "If any of you are sick you are to go to the elders so they can anoint you with oil and lay hands on you and pray for you" I believe this is not a physical sickness but a spiritual sickness which could be cause by these forces of darkness. May we continue to fight the fight and run the race

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