Here are four ways you can prepare for the spiritual battle of the believer.
Take up the Sword of the Spirit
If you have read Ephesians 6, you know that “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” (Ephesians 6:12). So we’ll most certainly need “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17, Hebrews 4:12) if we are to enter into any spiritual battle. Do you remember when Jesus was tempted by Satan in the wilderness? Satan took text out of context, but Jesus always used proper context and was able to say to the devil, “Be gone, Satan” (Matthew 4:10).
Know the Enemy
Unless we know the enemy, we’ll be more vulnerable to them. I say “them” because it isn’t just Satan but his fallen angels, too. Those who are in Christ have a bull’s-eye on their back. As we read earlier, “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood” that we can see with our eyes but against the principalities and powers, who are wicked spiritual forces “in the heavenly places,” which could mean they may be in places of authority through influencing leaders. If we don’t know how the enemy operates, we might not be able to “extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one” (Ephesians 6:16).
Gird up Your Mind
I know this is supposed to be “gird up the loins of your mind” (1 Peter 1:13) in the old King James Version, but what I mean is we ought to know where Satan stands because of Christ. Near the end of Jesus’ earthly ministry, He said, “The ruler of this world is judged” (John 16:11). That means he’s been found guilty, and that is clearly Satan. Jesus spoke earlier about this, saying, “Now is the judgment of this world; now will the ruler of this world be cast out” (John 12:31). So our Lord declares Satan’s judgment, meaning that convicted criminals can do no more harm than someone through iron bars. He can send darts our way, but he can never stop “the way” (John 14:6).
Find a Friend
The Old Testament tells us that “two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10). When you have a Christian brother or sister to stand with and kneel with, you’re better prepared to face a spiritual battle. That may be part of the reason Jesus sent the disciples out two by two. Perhaps they did as our outreach members do: When one is witnessing, the other is praying. And we know that prayer is also a crucial element in a spiritual battle (Ephesians 6:18).
We can prepare for a spiritual battle by taking up the sword of God, which is the Word of God, and read it! We can also know how Satan and his demons operate, perhaps through others and even through false religions that don’t preach the whole counsel of God, like the need for repentance or turning away from sins and forsaking them, the cross, sanctification, the blood of the Lamb, following Christ, and where Bible preaching is the norm and not the exception. We should now understand that the devil’s been judged and that even the devil is God’s devil. Finally, we can prepare for a spiritual battle if we walk together with another Christian friend who is there to pick us up when we fall, and we can help them up when they fall. If we do so, we might “be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm” (Ephesians 6:13b).
May God richly bless you,
Pastor Jack Wellman
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