I do not like the term, "spiritual warfare". The term implies that we are in a battle that we have yet to win. The truth is that if we are in Christ, the struggle is over and the victory has already been won!
"Spiritual warfare" is a term that was coined in the modern Charismatic movement. It means different things to different people. Some envision a vast host of satanic forces arrayed against them in the heavenly realm in the atmosphere just above us that they must constantly war against to maintain spiritual victory. Others see spiritual warfare as more of an inner conflict.
I do not see myself at war with satanic forces trying to obtain victory. Even though I may deal with attacks, challenges and obstacles that come my way, I am not at war. I am at peace, enjoying the trip!
I see myself in Christ seated with Him in heavenly places enjoying Jesus' victory, delivered from the power of darkness and translated into His kingdom of freedom!
To my knowledge, this term is not used in the New Testament. The apostle Paul did use the term "wrestle" in Ephesians 6 when he said, "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood..."
Instead of focusing on being at war, I like to think that we are celebrating Jesus' victory! The victory that we have in Christ encompasses every form of spiritual conflict, wherever it may be found.
The biggest challenge to the believer is not to overcome satanic forces, but the renewing of the mind to the redemption that we have in Christ.
Paul spoke of abstaining from fleshly lusts which war against the soul. So there can be a battle within our own soul.
I also like to think that as Christians we are in a battle for the souls of those who are yet living in bondage in the kingdom of darkness. In II Corinthians 4:4 Paul wrote and said that if our gospel be hid it is hidden from those who are lost in whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of those who do not believe lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ who is the image of God should shine unto them.
To put things into perspective, when we believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and are saved, we are delivered from the kingdom of darkness and given a commission to reach the lost with the good news of Jesus. But to be effective in our ministry to others we must first win the battles that are taking place within us.
My friend Terry Mize once told me that it is important that we win every battle!
There is a fight of faith. In every fight there will be winners and losers. In the fight of faith there is one loser and we win! Jesus has already won our victory over Satan and his entire kingdom. So we need to realize that going into every battle with the enemy we have already won!
The only way we lose battles in our personal life is to not actualize the victory that we have in Christ.
The term, "warfare" is used several times in the New Testament. It is important however, that we approach the subject from the correct perspective, otherwise we relinquish our position of victory in Christ and actually concede power to the enemy that he does not have. My goal in this writing is not to focus on the battle, the fight or any kind of war, but rather on the victory that we have in Christ.
"Mention the words 'spiritual warfare' and fierce battles with the devil come to mind. While it is true that Satan tries to put sickness, depression and strife in our lives, God does not want us to fight the devil in long, drawn-out battles. God's Word tells us to rest instead.
"In Ephesians Chapter 6, the word 'wrestle' appears only once, whereas the word 'stand' appears four times! This means that in spiritual warfare, we are to stand or rest in the victory of Christ. Jesus has already defeated the devil and put us on victory ground. And to help us stand our ground, He has given us His seven-piece armor. So stop trying to defeat a defeated foe. Just put on His armor and rest in His victory!" (Joseph Prince)
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