Spiritual warfare is something all believers should be aware of. I previously shared a post on what spiritual warfare is. It might be helpful for you to read it here before reading this. Today’s post is about how to fight spiritual warfare. The bible tells us exactly what to do in Ephesians 6:10-15. In this post with the help of the Holy Spirit, i will be explaining what this bible text means.
Step 1 – Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.
You might be thinking ‘how am i supposed to be strong when i am already under attack?’ Sometimes we get in situations where it seems as though God is demanding too much from us. How can one be strong in a storm? Why does this have to be the first thing mentioned?
When the devil attacks us as believers, his intention is to shift our focus from God to self. Focusing on self is when we start to think why me? It is when we turn our attention to how we feel alone. When we make everything about us. To be honest, this is difficult to do especially when it seems as though all hell has already broken loose and it feels like we are fighting many demons at once. But one thing i have come to realise is that God will never tell us to do something He thinks we cannot do. So before He tells us to be strong, He already knows that we can be strong. Just as we can be weak, we can be strong. He has given us everything we need to be strong. And that strength is found in Him.
The first step doesn’t just say be strong alone but it says we should be strong in God’s mighty power! The reason we fail is because we try to be strong alone without reaching out to the hand of God for help.
Step 2 – Put on the belt of truth.
The opposite of faith is fear. Attacks can bring about fear. Someone defined fear as False Evidence Appearing Real and i totally agree. A bad doctor’s report for example can bring about fear. Despite the doctor’s reports tells the fact of the situation, the bible tells the truth which says by Jesus’ stripes you are healed. Now does this even make any sense when pain and aches can still be felt? That is not for us to dwell on. What we should accept and dwell on is the truth.
I love how it says put on…. When we put on an apparel, it becomes a part of us. Ever wondered why it specifically uses the illustration of a belt? I feel it’s because the belt helps keeps an apparel up. There is an apparel of righteousness which we are told to wear. I will talk about righteousness in my next step. The belt is to help keep that apparel in place. The truth keeps righteousness in place. The truth is God. So when we wear our belt around our waist. We are simply holding up our righteousness with the help of God. The truth should be a part of us. We don’t just know about truth but we should have it in us and speak it concerning our situations.
The truth is strong and firm. At every instance we either operate in fear or in faith. When we tie fear around out waist, we are moved by the waves whose aim is to pull us away. But when we stand on truth, deep roots are developed within us and as such we are able to stand strong.
Step 3 – Wear the body armour of God’s righteousness.
Righteousness means to be free from guilt or sin. When we are attacked by the enemy, it is good for us to take an inventory of our lives to see if/where we have allowed the enemy in. Once an open door has been identified, we should show remorse and repent. But we should never dwell in guilt and condemnation. I love how the NLT versions says we should wear righteousness. Yes we should put it on. Once we have repented, God’s righteousness takes away our guilt. When God sees us, all He sees is righteousness not filthiness. King James Version calls it breastplate of righteousness. This is also a strategic position because it protects our heart. See Proverbs 4:23
Step 4 – Put on the shoes of peace
So you’ve done the first 3 and you might be thinking ‘i’m done now’. No, there is still work to do. Remember i mentioned before that God will not tell us to do what He knows we cannot do. He’s told us to put on shoes of peace so certainly He knows that no matter how tough the situation is, we can still find peace if we choose to. Philippians 4:6-7 gives us a formula for finding peace.
Prayer + Thanksgiving = Peace
When we pray we are casting our cares on God, trusting in His ability to perform. When we thank Him, we are focusing on what He has already done and in the process, the power and might of God is magnified in our hearts and mind; so much so that the bigness of it overshadows our situations. The end result of this is peace. I have tried this and it works. I need to do it always. Meditating on the truth found in God’s word will give us peace and prepare us to fight better. We naturally attack better when our mind is clear enough to strategize and plan how to attack. Not when our mind is already cluttered with fear. The reason why we need peace is for us to be prepared. We need no preparation if you are not expecting an attack. So this scripture is telling us that we don’t start preparing in the midst of the storm. We prepare before the storm.
Why does it link shoes with peace though? I feel it’s because most times when we don’t have peace, it’s as a result of places our feet takes us to. When we are in a place where there is misunderstanding, do we become overly sensitive and make a big drama out of a small issue? Or do we seek for peace? When we go to places where our spirit will be edified, when we attend events where our faiths are stirred, when we make our feet take us to places where we hear truth, it becomes easier to dwell in peace. Don’t go to places where anger, rage, gossips and fear will be ignited in your heart. Go to places where the truth that will secure your peace is spoken.
Step 5 – Hold up the shield of faith
Like we’ve already established, the truth will activate faith in our hearts. The next step is for us to hold up that faith. When we hold up something in our hand, that thing is not hidden. I interpret this step as publicly revealing our faith. We are not to leave our faith lying about. It isn’t meant to be dormant. Faith without works is dead. Faith is a shield. It is what protects the truth in our hearts. The devil is not after our family, money, health, comfort etc. He only uses these to get to something. What he wants is our faith. ‘Curse God and die’. You remember those words in the case of Job? That is exactly what he wants us to do. So we guard our hearts by publicly displaying our faith.
In practical terms, this looks like staying in that job because God has told you to stay despite your boss being mean and miserable. It means not quitting on that business despite you are getting offers for something better. It means continuing to tend your vineyard even when it seems as though nothing is coming out from that soil. It means moving away from the familiar into a place where God is leading you to. Faith is simply sticking with God’s instruction and working in it.
Guard your faith. Hold it firmly in battle so it doesn’t get snatched by the devil. Let the arrows of those harsh situations meet with faith instead of fear.
Step 6 – Put on salvation.
My friend if you are trying to do the above without accepting Jesus into your life as your Lord and saviour, you are wasting your time. In fact you have already set yourself up for failure.
Step 7 – Take the sword of the spirit which is the word of God
The bible says that the word of God is sharper than any two edged sword. There is power in that book that you have left in your drawer for weeks. That book will save your life. This battle we are in isn’t for fun. It is tough and i bet you, you do need all the help you can get and all of it is in the bible. Pull it out, dust it, open it and read! The devil doesn’t listen to our big vocabularies, our accents and eloquence. It is only the word of God that he fears. So if you are trying to put up a good talk with him without speaking the word of God, you are only deceiving yourself. Tell him ‘it is written……’.
Step 8 – Pray in the spirit at all times
Steps 7 and 8 are intertwined. As we pray, we need to pray the word of God which is spirit and life. Notice how it doesn’t say we should only pray when we feel like? You get the drift. We are to pray always because we do not know when the next attack is coming.
In conclusion, verse 13 of our bible text says we should put on every armour. We can’t pray only without spending time in the word and expect victory. We can’t study the word and not speak it out in prayer and expect to win. We can’t pray, study and attend every night club around and then wonder why we don’t have peace. It is when we put on every armour that we will still be standing after the battle.
I believe we now know what to do. Let’s get busy!
***Images are from google images***