Four Steps to Fighting Spiritual Warfare
By Rick Warren
“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” (Ephesians 6:12 NIV).
There are four things we need to do when we are facing spiritual warfare in our lives:
1. Acknowledge the adversary. Satan is real (1 Peter 5:8-9). Why would God send his Son to fight what does not exist? The Bible says in 1 John 3:8, “The Son of God came to destroy these works of the Devil” (NLT).
When you’re being attacked, it’s proof that you’re a believer. The more you make an impact for God, the more the Devil is going to fight you. You never outgrow it; it just gets more intense.
2. Accept God-given authority. Most believers don’t understand about the authority they have against the Devil. Matthew 28:18-19 says we have all authority in Heaven and on Earth. Then Jesus says, “Therefore go and make disciples” (NIV). He transfers the authority to you and me. He does that because he’s given us a specific mission: sharing the message of Jesus as his ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20).
3. Put on God’s armor. When Paul wrote about the whole armor of God in Ephesians 6:11-17, he was in prison chained to a Roman guard. Paul used the Roman centurion as a model for spiritual armor. Paul says that just as the Roman soldier was properly dressed to do battle, we also need to be dressed for battle.
For instance, I will often pray, “Lord, I put on the helmet of salvation that will protect me from the thoughts the Devil will try to give me. I don’t want to think the Devil’s thoughts. I don’t want to think my thoughts. I want to think your thoughts, so that I may be a voice for you. I put on the belt of truth. Lord, I want to share the truth, not falsehood. I want to lead people into righteousness.”
4. Aim the artillery. The battlefield for spiritual warfare is primarily in your thought life (2 Corinthians 10:4-5). The weapons God gives you to use demolish arguments are humility, faith, truth, and praise. Take every thought captive!
Talk It Over
When you feel attacked by the Devil, what does your authority in Christ give you the power to do?
How does memorizing Scripture help you engage in spiritual warfare?
We’re told to “take captive every thought” (2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV) — what do you think that means?
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Prayer is a simple concept. It’s just a conversation with God.
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This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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