Spiritual warfare is a very real thing, even though many Christians and non-Christians are unaware of it. We are in the middle of a war, and every true Christian on the planet is right alongside us, whether they know it or not. Spiritual warfare refers to the war between angels and demons. This can sound frightening, as it should. The truth is, demons try to persuade us to do wrong and try to keep us from God, and angels fight to turn us to God and open our eyes. Not only do these demons try to influence Christians, they plague non-Christians and try to lead them from Christ until death. So, this article is mainly about how to fight in this spiritual warfare.
I won’t give you weapons, the Bible does. I will only explain the weapons to the best of my God-given ability-I hope. The following verses are some of my favorite verses and are quite famous, but we hardly ever listen to the deep meaning behind these words.
10Finally, let the mighty strength of the Lord make you strong. 11Put on all the armor that God gives, so you can defend yourself against the devil's tricks. 12We are not fighting against humans. We are fighting against forces and authorities and against rulers of darkness and powers in the spiritual world. 13So put on all the armor that God gives. Then when that evil day [a] comes, you will be able to defend yourself. And when the battle is over, you will still be standing firm.
Contemporary English Version
This passage is in context with the armor of God, which we will discuss next. Look at the first verse in the passage above. Notice how it says the mighty strength of the Lord. This means that you will be strong, but only if you rely on God. There is no strength other than Him. Now look at the next verse. It says to put on all the armor that God (remember, it’s His armor) gives, so you can defend…against the devil’s tricks. Take this verse extremely seriously. While you may think that we are fighting worldly persecution, we are actually warring with the devil himself, who tries to tempt us into temptation and sin. Humans are capable of sin on their own, but demons capitalize on it. The next verse goes to reinforce this clearly: we are not fighting humans, but “dark powers” of the spiritual war. I love the last verse. If you put on God’s armor, then you may be able to fight in the battle, and when the fight ends, you will be standing firm. That is a promise.
So, now we need to familiarize ourselves with the armor. This spiritual armor is often taken for granted, or called “good qualities”. But the Bible clearly says here that these pieces of armor are weapons against the enemy, and can be used to defeat him.
14Be ready! Let the truth be like a belt around your waist, and let God's justice protect you like armor. 15Your desire to tell the good news about peace should be like shoes on your feet. 16Let your faith be like a shield, and you will be able to stop all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Let God's saving power be like a helmet, and for a sword use God's message that comes from the Spirit.
Contemporary English version
Ok, so here are the weapons that we can use against the devil. The first one is the belt of Truth. Truth means to not deceive or lie, which are the devil’s weapons. Truth also could mean the Truth of Jesus, for He says that He is the “way, the TRUTH, and the life” (added capitalization mine). So, a weapon is telling the truth, but also sharing The Truth with everyone we can.
God’s justice will protect you, for He is the ultimate Judge. This isn’t mentioned much in “classical” talks about the armor, but it is an important part of your armor. Because you have been made right with Him, God’s justice will protect you, “So there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus” Romans 8:1
The third weapon is the shoes of peace. Do not fight with earthy forces, instead use peace. Try to avoid fighting, and when persecution comes your way, love your enemies instead of throwing fists.
Next is the shield of Faith. Always have faith in God, even when times get rough. He is always here for you and God is in control. The devil tries to destroy your faith, so build it into a tower, and protect it from the devil, for he despises faith.
The helmet of Salvation, God’s saving power. Salvation will help keep the enemy at bay, for you will have the Holy Spirit to help guide you and Jesus in your heart. If you have Jesus in you, then it is impossible for a demon to possess you. (And while demons can still attack you, you have the power to cast them away in Jesus’s name)
The Sword of the Spirit. This is a sword, meaning it is a powerful weapon. The devil hates the Bible, and good knowledge of it will make the enemy shiver in fear. But even if you do not have a good knowledge of it, you can still use it against him. Read it, believe it, and do it. These are the steps to take to use this “sword” to its potential.
The final weapon is prayer.
18Never stop praying, especially for others. Always pray by the power of the Spirit. Stay alert and keep praying for God's people. 19Pray that I (Paul) will be given the message to speak and that I may fearlessly explain the mystery about the good news. 20I was sent to do this work, and that's the reason I am in jail. So pray that I will be brave and will speak as I should.
Prayer is what destroys the enemy. Prayer is the most powerful weapon, for God does hear prayers. We should pray for healing, for ourselves and for others. We should also pray for help or guidance, like if you are about to take a big test or go to a job interview. Another form of prayer that we often times forget to do is what I call “Praise Prayer”. This is praise to God in a form of a prayer. Praise Prayer can be anything from saying how great God is to humbling yourself before Him.
I hope this article has helped your understanding of spiritual warfare and how to fight in it. I recommend the “Screwtape Letters” By C.S. Lewis and “Lord Foulgrin’s Letters” by Randy Alcorn; both books concerned with helping readers understand the devil’s schemes.