In last week’s post on spiritual warfare we talked about shifting our focus and seeing who our real enemy is. This week let’s dive back into Ephesians 6 and talk about one specific piece of our armor. Our sword.
Before we do that, I want to make one more interesting observation about verse 12:
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Let’s be very clear that we are not left in this battle alone. On the contrary, I believe the last part of verse 12 shows that the battle not only resides here on earth but in the “heavenly realms” as well. If you’ve ever wondered if God is aware or present in our battles, be assured He’s not only aware but is ultimately in control of it all. Satan is a created being and we know that Christ is before all things and in Him all things hold together (Col 1:17). Jesus is large and in charge!
In fact, the more I read and study, the more I see that our role is to stand firm. Our enemy is sure and determined. We must be more so. In Ephesians 6:10-18, we are told repeatedly to stand our ground, to stand firm in our faith.
To do this it’s vital that we:
- read the Bible daily. This is the sword of our armor (Eph 6:17). Not reading God’s Word means you’re ill equipped. You have the gun, so to speak, but no bullets. Even Jesus used direct Scripture to fight the enemy off during his testing in the wilderness (Matt 4:1-11).
- spend time with God in prayer to repent, obtain mercy and find grace (Heb 4:16), reconnect, and receive wisdom, guidance and revelation (Eph 1:15-23).
- pray without ceasing—be in constant conversation with God. This is not just communication but a way of thinking (Eph 6:18).
Let me share something with you that liberated me from the enemy’s hold. I remember sitting in my kitchen one night with a dear friend. She and her husband had joined us for dinner—actually they were a believing couple I admired and had invited over in the hopes that they would influence my husband to faith. Yes, I did that stuff too.
Little did I know I would be the one greatly influenced. Now this may be something you already know and understand but for someone like me who was not raised in the church and taught about God’s power being greater than the enemy, it was a huge revelation.
Satan can’t hear your thoughts. Nope, he can’t. Only God can. Satan is a limited being. He is NOT omnipotent and he is certainly NOT omniscient. But he is a mastermind at discernment. He can watch us, hear us, study us, and use all that to plan his fiery darts (vs. 16) against us, but he cannot know us as God knows us.
This is also why Jesus spoke Scripture out loud to ward satan off. Nothing sends the enemy scampering away faster than hearing God’s Word spoken out loud. Another reason why we need to have this arsenal of God’s truth ready to speak out loud.
Do you see how even more precious your thought life is? Satan can interject thoughts and impressions at us that we think suddenly pop into our thoughts, but the key is to recognize them. Sometimes we can’t because he is so crafty that he’s found a weakness and knows how to play upon those doubts and fears already pinging around in our heads. Other times it can be as sudden, foreign and obvious in its lie. (Maybe one of the enemy’s unskilled minions had a shift that particular day. LOL! Remember, the enemy is not omniscient so he can’t be everywhere all the time like God is.)
My point here is, that we can’t discern the enemy’s lies if our minds and thoughts aren’t full of God’s truth. And that truth comes from his Word and tells us:
- Who God is. The entire Bible is about our Creator, His Son and the Holy Spirit. Do you know that the power of the Holy Spirit that fills us is the very same power that rose Christ from the dead? The word “power” in verse ten is kratos and is the same word used in Eph 1:19-20:
and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,
- Who we are in Christ. We are adopted, accepted, blameless, blessed, chosen, forgiven, holy and redeemed (Ephesians 1:3-14). Shout that back to the enemy when you are feeling unattractive, like a failure, like you can never do anything right, like no one loves or wants you, when you feel you can offer nothing of value to this world. Those are lies. Know God’s truth and it will set you free from them. God doesn’t do anything part way nor does He do shoddy work. God made you and absolutely adores you. He sings over you (Zeph 3:17) and lavishes his grace upon you (Eph 1:7).
Now just sit there a minute and let all that sink in. That alone is some of the most powerful truths we can know and use against the enemy. John 1 says that Jesus is the Word of God and Luke 6:48 says He’s our foundation. That is where we stand firm, in God’s Word, my friends. And that brings us to our feet.
We’ll pick up with the rest of our armor next week. I pray in the meantime that God would ignite a fire in your hearts—an unquenchable hunger—for His Word.
I ask—ask the God of our Master, Jesus Christ, the God of glory—to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is he is calling you to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life he has for his followers, oh, the utter extravagance of his work in us who trust him—endless energy, boundless strength! — Eph 1:15-19 The Message
Praying and believing,