Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 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. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. ~Ephesians 6:10-18
During our first of this two part series, we left off with a segment about the Lord’s Prayer. The prayer is often prayed as a means of submitting to God accepting all that happens to us, good and bad, as the will of God; it is said as though “his will to be done on earth as it is in heaven” is entirely up to God. The prayer is actually a spiritual warfare prayer. We are to put on display as Jesus followers, as his ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20), as peacemakers and those who emulate Jesus (Ephesians 5:1.2), his will being done “on earth as it is in heaven.” The rest of the prayer when we act upon what it says will keep us from allowing Satanic strongholds to take root in our lives. We are free to partner with Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit in order to put on display his kingdom on earth as an act of war that is done through putting on love above all else (Colossians 3:14). For a rendition of this prayer said in this light, go here.
In addition to prayer as a weapon of war, here is a list of other tools of spiritual warfare discussed during the prayer event:
- Faith (Joshua 6). We trust that God is working and showing mercy to animals in ways we cannot see. We are to have the kind of faith that drives out fear (James 4:7) and reminds us to hope (1 John 4:18).
- Worship. Combined with honest prayer in Jesus’ name, this is how we tap into the transforming power of the Holy Spirit, like breathing in the breath of God.
- Striving for unity, despite our differences. The devil wants to keep us divided and distracted from our main battle, which is against him. We claim the loving power of Jesus to help us be one body, with many parts, growing together. We are God’s family from all over the world to change the world!
- Our peace is an act of the only war we were meant to fight: “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.” (Ephesians 6:12) In a world torn by human war, let us be set apart.
- The Sabbath. Obedience and honoring God is doing warfare. Rest in general is a tool, because it empowers us to keep pushing forward joyfully! Resting in God, learning to abide in Him as our source of life, is especially powerful.
- Fasting. For more see SAGC’s Fasting Outline.
- Knowing and praying God’s Word. Satan would keep us so busy that we do not take time out with God.
- Joy. We are pushing back the forces of chaos and evil when we allow the Holy Spirit’s characteristics to infuse us; we are weakening the powers and principalities’ strongholds over animal welfare.
- Being thankful (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
- Truth. We share truth not to be offensive or divisive, but rather to be a united front against the deceptive power of evil over creation!
A few resources that were mentioned:
For the reader, a book highly recommended by Marcello Newall, “Discovering An Evangelical Heritage” by Donald W. Dayton. Marcello writes: “For Dayton the original evangelicals were abolitionists, advocates of women’s rights, defenders of the poor and marginalized, reformers; many were vegetarian or interested in dietary reform, but more generally they were spiritual radicals who believed that the gospel was a pledge to both personal and social transformation. All this began to change at the end of the 19th century, when a different understanding of eschatology meant that the gospel was no longer about improving the world through personal salvation but almost exclusively about saving souls for eternity. Ultimately, a different kind of evangelical emerged and the radical tradition that was at the very foundations of the movement was essentially buried and forgotten.”
Some resources on spiritual warfare and on prayer from the ReKnew.org blog:
And our SAGC page on Resources (we will be updating the page by their categories shortly to make it easier to find material you may be looking for).
What are your thoughts about how Satan and the powers and principalities hold mankind in bondage with lies? What are your thoughts on spiritual warfare? Do you have some specific tools that you use to combat the evil one and to remain steadfast in the Father’s love? We would love to hear from you!
Thank you for reading and following our blog, we pray it is a blessing and that you will share it widely with others! Any comments are welcome. Blessings ~ Jessica and Kathy