No one would doubt that we are in a war today for our nation, our children’s future, and our own soul’s destiny. Yet somehow the topic of warfare can seem heavy and often just something we’d rather not discuss or participate in. Reports are that many were warned about the potential attack of terrorist in 2001, but it just didn’t seem possible that it could happen to us. But it did! The same is true of spiritual warfare.
As I ministered yesterday on the topic of Spiritual Warfare, I left the church excited at the majority that closed the doors to the enemy and also exhausted from the backlash from the enemy. There is no doubt the enemy does not want us to be informed on warfare and on how we are to handle his attacks upon our lives. We have become so accustomed to coming into church and hearing a nice soft message on how to be happy or how to be encouraged without understanding the reason why we have to keep hearing these messages and going through the motions over and over again. It’s like having the screen door open in our home and just giving us a fly swatter without telling us to just close the door. We spend all our lives swatting at the flies without understanding how they are getting into our lives in the first place.
As an Apostolic (sending) Church, we are accustomed to the concept of warfare. Paul tells us that Acts 14:22 that much hardship will be required to enter into the Kingdom of God. This is a foreign concept to western Christianity, but not so to our brothers and sisters in other nations. We have become soft in our “religion” because it has not really required anything from us other than a little inconvenience on Sunday morning. However, this is not who we are as the body of Christ and as the army of the living God. I John 3:8 tells us the reason Jesus came was to “destroy the works of the devil” and we have been empowered to do that as we follow His example and complete the work He has given to us. When we quote “the same works I do you will do and greater”, we may want to think only of the more glamours works such as healing a sick person or teaching and preaching. However, all of these works are based on the fact that the works of the devil are being destroyed in the lives of those we minister to. It would be nice if we could just pass out the silver bullet or wave the magic wand, but unfortunately those things do not exist or at best are only very temporary.
So how do we keep the balance? First and foremost, all we do must be covered and smothered in the love of God. Why do we war? Because we love! Why do we teach about the tactics of the enemy? Because we love! Why did Jesus come and not just stop at the synagogues instead of going onto the cross? Because He loves! Our love will take us past the comfort zones of life and onto the battle field to recover the wounded and to inform them of the traps the enemy has laid for them.
I don’t want my children and grandchildren or yours to be swatting at flies all of their lives. This prevents them from moving into the things God has for them. In Exodus 8, Pharoah was given the opportunity to set the time when he wanted the frogs to be removed from the land and he said “tomorrow”. How much damage did the frogs do during the time between Pharoah’s moment of decision and “tomorrow”? How many more people were tormented? How much more property was destroyed during that interval of now and tomorrow? Moses prayed according to the timetable set by Pharoah. The torment of the enemy is on our time table. We can resist him and he will flee or we can be like Pharoah and say “tomorrow”. Why wait?
James 4:7 So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.