f you are a Christian, you are engaged in spiritual warfare if you believe it or not. C. S Lewis, in his preface to the chapters of the Screwtape Letters, once said this.
“There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them.” (C. S Lewis)
Denying The War Exists
Many make the error to deny the existence of demons or angels altogether. On the opposing side, many obsess over the reality of their existence. Both are on the side of error. In my experience, the only lens to look through their existence is in the means of following Jesus authentically.
Jesus, before he even performed his first miracle, was already engaged in spiritual warfare in Matthew 4. As Christians, we will be faced with the same battle if we intend to wholeheartedly follow all that God has planned for us.
We now have access to the same power that raised Christ Jesus from the grave, and this frightens the enemy. However, it is only when we combine our knowledge of Scripture with faith that the walls of demonic strongholds fall.
Instead of just giving you 40 scriptures on spiritual warfare, would I like to do is to place the scriptures into different categories so that you will have context when you engage in battle. Again, the point is to be filled with the knowledge of Scripture and to exercise your faith. When the two are combined, the power of God is released.
Defining Your Spiritual Warfare Strategy
In Matthew 4, whenever Jesus was being tempted by the devil, notice that the enemy used scripture in response back to Jesus.
“Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “‘On their hands, they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’”
When Jesus revealed the secret to his power (the Word of God), Satan used it as a means to bring confusion. When faced with confusion, Jesus quoted the Word of God back to Satan reveals two things:
- Jesus knew the Word of God intimately, and the devil just knew some words that God has spoken.
In that difference lies the power of faith and in the knowledge of Scripture. It is not enough to know a few scriptures, do you know God? Do you know His character? Do you know His goodness? Do you have a personal relationship with God so much that when the enemy uses a few scriptures to bring bondage, you can respond in your knowledge of Him with confidence?
Don’t settle for just knowing a few scriptures about God, know Him personally! To facilitate this: let’s break down the following scriptures into 3 main categories:
- Your Identity In Christ
- Embracing the Spiritual Fight
- Fighting With God’s Word
Your Identity in Christ
It is vital to understand spiritual warfare in the context of your identity in Christ. Anybody can quote a few scriptures (even the enemy), what’s more, important is that you understand the power behind them. As disciples of Jesus, it is our privilege to worship Him and to become like Him. Because we desire to become like Jesus, we do the things that He did. To become like Him, it is a risk of faith because Jesus calls us into things we never deemed possible for us apart from Him. We will never contend for those spiritual realities if we do understand that we have been given them through Jesus.
Colossians 3:1-3 “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.”
Our true selves are hidden in the Christ. To find our true identity, we must embark on the path of following Jesus. We do that by setting our minds on our identity in Jesus, not in the system or pleasures of the world. We yearn for the same realities of heaven to become the reality on earth.
Galatians 2:20 - “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
Faith is now apart of our identity. Before we knew Jesus, we allowed only what natural to rule our hearts. Now, since we have Jesus, our flesh is faith. Meaning, we live in faith just as much as we live in the flesh. We base our decisions on wisdom and the reality of faith. We know have access to the same resources of heaven through the gift of faith.
Ephesians 4:22-24 - “To put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”
Now that our life is found in Jesus, we pursue the same life that Jesus lived. A life of righteousness and holiness. To do this, we throw off the old system of belief that dominated our life before Jesus and walk in faith. It is our privilege to renew our minds in the truth of God’s Word.
Romans 6:6 - “We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.”
Because of Jesus, we now are not controlled by the yoke of sin. Instead, we are completely set free from the power of darkness in our lives. We can operate from the same freedom that Jesus operated in.
Romans 8:11 - “The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you.”
The same resurrection power that rose Jesus from the grave now lives in us as believers. This means we no longer can be controlled by the power of the enemy are now alive to the power of Christ Jesus in us. Because the same power lives in us, we should contend for the same things that Jesus contented for.
1 Corinthians 15:57 - “But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
God has won the victory through Jesus. Now through him, we have the same access and ability to live a life of freedom and victory!
Embracing The Fight
2 Corinthians 10:3-5 - “For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.”
Paul connects our identity in Christ to our ability to war against the enemy in the spirit. Now, Paul is not saying that our identity is found in a raging war against the enemy. No, it is much more deeper than that. He is saying through our identity in Jesus, we are compelled to fight against the enemy because he comes against our obedience in Christ.
Ephesians 6:10-12 - “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
Paul solidifies that our fight with the enemy is a spiritual one. Although we are trained in the flesh as human beings, our identity in Christ brings us into different training. We train ourselves in the Spirit through the Word of God and communion with the Holy Spirit so that demonic rulers, authors, and cosmic powers bow down to the name of Jesus.
Ephesians 6:13-17 - “Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on
the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God…”
Paul instructs us on how to win the spiritual fight in warfare, by putting on the full armor of God. He then lists the defensive measures we are to take as followers of Jesus; the breastplate of righteousness, the belt of truth, gospel of peace at our feet and the shield of faith. Our only offensive weapon is the most powerful resource on heaven and earth - the Word of God.
Fighting With God’s Word
In Matthew 4, Jesus used God’s Word to fight off the enemy and ultimately crushed the enemy by fulfilling it. As Christians, we are not left defenseless against the enemy. On the contrary, through the resurrection of Jesus, we are empowered to destroy the works of the enemy. Through God’s Word, we can overcome all trials, circumstances, physical or mental diseases, relationships that the enemy uses to bring bondage into our lives.
Through Jesus, God has already positioned us to reign in life with Him.
Romans 5:17 - “For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God's abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!”
God’s gift us grace through Jesus positioned us to reign in life with Jesus. Because of God’s gift, we can now fully live a life of freedom that is otherwise impossible without the work of Jesus on the cross.
The following scriptures will equip you for every spiritual battle you will face.
Hebrews 4:12 - “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
1 John 4:4 - “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”
Isaiah 54:17 - “no weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed…”
Zechariah 4:6 - “'Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,' says the LORD Almighty.”
Matthew 24:35 - “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
James 4:7 - “"Submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
Romans 8:37 - “In all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.”
Luke 10:19 - “Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you.”
Deuteronomy 3:22 - “Do not fear them, for the Lord your God is the one fighting for you.”
Psalms 91:1 - “Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.”
John 16:33 - “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Matthew 18:18 - “Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
1 Peter 5:8-9 - “Be sober-minded and alert. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in your faith”
Joshua 1:9 - “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Today is the day to take back territory from the enemy. God has already won the territory through Jesus! Advance in the kingdom through the Word of God and walk in the freedom of your identity in Him!
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