VILLAGE EVANGELISM

Lecture Six

Spiritual Warfare


Ephesians 6:10-13 speaks of the whole armour of God
‘Be strong’, ‘Put on the whole armour of God’, ‘We wrestle…’  It is a fact that spiritual warfare is a part of the Christian experience whoever you are.  It is not a special calling and it goes on 24 hours a day.  It is knowing that Jesus already has the victory, which is what gives us the victory.
Ephesians 6:10:  Finally be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.  Turning this into a prayer for ourselves makes us strong in His might.  We need to know who we are in Christ and live responsibly in Him.

Ephesians 6:12: We do not wrestle against flesh and blood..
It is not people we must fight but the principalities of evil in the spiritual realm.  The battle is not natural but supernatural.  We must therefore put on the full armour of God.

  1. So we can stand against the devil’s plans and strategies, against the intelligence and personality of the devil behind the plans to trip us up.
  2. All good in the universe comes from God.  All evil in the universe comes from personalities.  These are human personalities and demonic personalities that influence humans
  3. Demonic personalities can talk, listen, think and reason and devise evil strategies.
  4. James 4:1 says ‘Resist the devil and he will flee from you.’
  5. Spiritual warfare is learning to recognise strategies of the enemy and refusing to co-operate with them but instead to resist them in Jesus’ name.  John 10:10: The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.  I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.  Not only does the devil come to steal, kill and destroy, but he is also the accuser.  We need to see what the devil is trying to do and resist him in Jesus’ name.

How did Paul handle Spiritual Warfare?
Ephesians 6:14-20:  We can read in Acts 19 that many in Ephesus practised witchcraft as well as the idolatry and immorality of the Greek world at that time.  The Ephesians asked Paul how to live in such a place as Christians.  They wanted to know how they could experience victory.  Paul was clear and vivid in his answer and told them about the spiritual armour they would need to keep on. 

  1. We have a relationship with God
  2. We are saved eternally
  3. God is able to keep us from falling
  4. We are new creatures in Christ

These scriptural truths give us faith to overcome the enemy.

The Bible goes on to teach us

  1. Don’t let the sun go down on your anger
  2. Humble yourself in the sight of God
  3. Forgive one another
  4. Love one another
  5. We need to know we are in Christ for our armour is Christ
  6. We need discernment and pray for wisdom

Ways to do Spiritual Warfare

  1. Direct confrontation with the devil – resist him in Jesus’ name
  2. Exalt the Lord, obey the word and exercise faith
  3. Pray in the Spirit, speak in the Spirit, in the anointing of the Holy Spirit
  4. Live in the Spirit because here is the victory

 

How do we pray in the Holy Spirit?

  1. remove things that will hinder the Holy Spirit’s flow in our lives, check that we do not quench the Spirit or grieve the Spirit so check our lives
  2. yield ourselves to the Holy Spirit, allow Him to flow through us, come under the anointing and give ourselves totally to Him
  3. Be led by the Spirit, allow Him to lead us in prayer.  The Holy Spirit will show us how to pray (Romans 8:26).  Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities for we know not what we should pray for as we ought but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groaning which cannot be uttered.  He leads us to subjects and details of a subject, for a person, country, for someone sick, allowing the Holy Spirit to energise or empower our prayer.  This may also include praying in tongues or known language.

Crashing the gates of hell
            The devil can only do what we allow him to do.  We need to shut the gate on him

  1. The mind: shut the gate to our mind in the sense of not allowing negative thoughts from the devil to enter in; we must analyse our thoughts and chase out any bad thought
  2. The heart: Our attitudes may be causing activities that can open the door to the enemy; deal with negative attitudes and take them to the cross.
  3. The mouth: Don’t allow evil spirits to operate through our speech in criticism, slander, curses or any negative thing, only use your mouth for the Holy Spirit to speak through.
  4. Relationships: Disunity will give the devil an entrance, agreement will close the door on the enemy.  Keep these 4 doors well shut.

We can now take aggressive action against the enemy

  1. The Great Commission: Go to every creature, nation to preach and disciple nations, teach them all things

The Bible does not only tell us how to get saved but how to run the government, the family, the economy and how to use land properly

  1. If the enemy shuts doors on the Gospel, we can either go home or we can break down the doors in Jesus’ name in prayer and penetrate

Strongholds and Powers
Ask the questions

  1. What is this village known for?
  2. What is the biggest problem here?  How long has it been here?

Our job is to break down these powers in Jesus’ name.
Our job is to avoid their influence, pray more specifically, intercede for repentance, break down the strongholds that have built up over many generations.  God has promised to give us victory all the time as we listen to Him for strategies and march out against the enemy.
5.      Take authority in Jesus’ name.  The devil knows how much authority we have, so we must use our authority to throw off all counter-attacks of the devil for God gave us authority at creation.  Jesus rose from the dead and gave authority to the Church (John 20:21-23), so the church must exercise authority over the devil, by praying, fighting in prayer and the Lord will give you the victory.

For you to think about

  1. What is the whole armour of God?
  2. Why do we put on the armour of God?
  3. How do we pray in the Holy Spirit?
  4. What 4 things must we do to stop the evil entering into us?
  5. How can we take aggressive action against the devil?

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