Spiritual warfare is a topic I’d rather avoid. I hope my light-hearted approach last week wasn’t misleading. The enemy’s activity is serious, and standing firm is our responsibility.

When I was a child, I pictured the Devil as an impish little guy with pointy ears and a smirking face, wearing a red suit and dancing around, threatening people with a pitchfork. I don’t know where that portrayal came from. I wasn’t afraid of him because I’d been taught God is more powerful and he fights for me.

Later, I framed the picture based on 1 Peter 5:8. “Be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” I saw him as a ferocious lion nipping at my heels but unable to do much harm.

As time passed and I heard teaching on spiritual warfare, I thought it a bit extreme and the people who spoke of this dark subject a little far out. And then I found myself in battle requiring the weapons promised in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5.

“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh. (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”

Apostle Paul prepared us for spiritual battle.

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

“Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparations of the gospel of peace;

“Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints” (Ephesians 6:10-18).

If you’re following Christ wholeheartedly, expect to battle the Enemy.

How can we know what we’re dealing with is spiritual warfare? It’s obvious when Satan unleashes everything he’s got to blow us off the map.

He did it in the biblical account of a good, God-fearing man named Job, destroying his children, his wealth, and his health. Clearly this was spiritual warfare—the story says so.

Satan challenged the Lord, accusing Job of following him only because the Lord had given him favor and made him prosperous. Satan received permission to attack Job, only he could not take his life.

I wonder if the word bizarre ever crossed Job’s mind during his affliction. He had no clue what was going on, but didn’t he think it bizarre that disaster came out of nowhere, altering his life forever? I’ve learned bizarre is a primary indication the Enemy is at work.

The story of Job has a happy ending. After the attack, the Lord gave him ten more children and restored more than he’d lost. “So the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning” (Job 42:12).

Are you in a baffling situation? You don’t understand how this happened…it came out of nowhere. Look closely and likely you’ll see the enemy’s fingerprints.

Satan is a formidable adversary, bent on devouring us. That’s not extreme teaching. It’s Scripture-based fact.

Don’t be afraid! Our enemy is powerful but he’s no match for our God! Remember, “…greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

First Peter 5:7 outlines our battle strategy.

“Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.”

We must stay aware of the prowling lion and resist him steadfast in faith (see verse 9).

In spiritual battle, stand firm—one hand securely in God’s hand, the other wielding the shield of faith—and pray with confidence.

Moses declared, “The Lord will fight for you while you keep silent” (Exodus 14:14 (NASB).

Listen to his song of victory when the Lord delivered the Israelites from the Enemy—the Egyptian army.

“…I will sing unto the Lord, for he hath triumphed gloriously; the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea. The Lord is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father’s God, and I will exalt him….Who is like unto thee, O Lord, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?” (Exodus 15: 1-2, 11 KJV).

Let’s use our battle scars as an opportunity to declare God’s praise! Tell me how he has strengthened you and brought you through a struggle with the enemy. And please share this article with your friends!

© Dianne Barker 2019.