Murder! Mike’s gone…how can this be? In confusion I wondered, “who would ever want to hurt my son?” It was traumatic! I was numb and overwhelmed by my sudden loss…engulfed by fear, and inundated by the investigation and future trial. Weak, and unprepared, it seemed I was put on the front lines of battle. I was angry and ready to fight with any strength I could muster up. I found it overwhelming an incapable task of my own. I had no power! My fleshly resources were insufficient to fight the battle alone. I failed only to discover that by God’s power could I withstand all that came against me.
Warfare is here and it is a part of life. The fight! The struggle! The pain! Tribulations are the daily battles of defeats and daily victories we overcome. Conflicts within the mind, and the external struggles around us, at most, deplete our strength. We are in spiritual warfare! The attacks, the assaults, and the accusations continue whether mental or physical, inward or outward, they challenge our position, our faith and who we are in Christ. Jesus affirms, “I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart. I have overcome the world” (1).
Friends, I come to you this morning sober-minded. You have a mighty adversary who is set against you. I have an adversary who is set against me, we who love the Lord Jesus Christ, have a warring foe that is ready to attack and sift us like wheat. Together we must stand, and fight! Satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy (2).
There are three ways children of God are attacked. They are through the world, in the flesh, and by the enemy himself, the devil. My friends, we are in desperate need of spiritual strength to overcome these enemies. For certain, the mind is weak and heart is frail, and this is the place Satan attacks the most. We must fight against sin daily, for it set itself against us. Satan’s tactics are subtle, and deceptive, and he cleverly uses the influences of worldly methods to influence us and propagate false truths which oppose God, His people, and His work. Paul instructed the Ephesians to “be strong the Lord and in the strength of His might” then he tells how to fight this adversary by putting on the full armor of God to withstand Satan, and stand firm. Our battles are not against flesh and blood, but against rulers, authorities and unseen powers of darkness (3).
Thankfully, Jesus has given us confidence that true life is found in Him, in Him only…where safety is. Still, we are admonished to withstand the devil’s attacks by keeping guard, to be on alert, watch, pray, and fight for the faith. We are in spiritual warfare…and if Jesus is Lord of your life, then you are on the front lines.
God’s has given us His word, (our sword) to thwart the enemy. My friend, those biblical truth can tear down the fortresses of lies. Lies that come either subtle in the mind or perhaps in an outward manifestation if conflict. They convince us to fight in our own human power, armed with fleshly tactics. But God is given essentials weapons found in biblical truths. That is wisdom of knowledge in the Bible to withstand those clashes that come against us. The Bible is where power is increase to fight the forces of darkness. Those mighty Scripture teaches us to pray earnestly, to resist evil, and be strengthened to combat Satan’s assaults, and temptations. They speak of fighting the fleshly inclinations that rise within. We are Christ’s soldier and the battle is His fight we need only to depend solely on God’s strengthening power. Let’s embrace sober instruction to walk in the Spirit. “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 and destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ”(4).
My friends, let’s take up Paul’s example as he emulated to Timothy: fight the good fight, endure hardship, and finish the course as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. Onward Christian soldiers! In Christ we stand! The reality is, “It is finished! ”Christ has already won. Live in the finish work of Christ. Be victorious in Jesus! To Him be the glory.
1. John 16: 33
2. John 10: 10
3. Eph 6: 10-18
4. 2 Cor 10: 3-5
All Scriptures are taken from (esv)