I have thought long and hard about what I am to say today and this topic keeps resurfacing. I know that not very many people will read this and few who read it will understand the serious nature of the topic, so they will not heed the message. I pray that I am wrong about that.
Spiritual Warfare is a vitally important topic. If you ignore it, you will become enmeshed in a messy spiritual battle without the tools to manage it. Just because we feel good after a battle does not mean our responsibility ends there. A battle always means there are wounded left behind. As Christians, we are responsible for any wounding that occurs because of the weapons we use. Those weapons are usually words and the wounded are usually not the enemy because we do not understand that humans are not our enemy. Eph. 6:12 says, “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness, in the heavenly places.” This clearly states that humans are not our enemy. It also clearly states that evil spirits are our enemy.
If we have truth in our hearts, we will not take offense against those around us, who interact with us. Always, if we take offense to something, it is not the event that is the problem, but rather the belief in our own hearts. This is something that I have to say over and over because as humans, we don’t want to own the pain that belongs to us. We, like Adam and Eve, want to point the finger at someone else as the causal source.
1. Nobody can make us feel something. We feel because of what we believe. We believe because of our interpretation of events. Our interpretation includes assumptions about the intent of other people’s hearts. We CANNOT know what is in someone else’s heart. The most evil people in the world can sound sweet and loving and seem really wonderful on the outside. The most beautiful souls can appear ugly to us when all we see is the pain they are enduring. Only God knows the heart. When we judge others, we are actually judging them based on our own ugliness inside, not based on their hearts. If we believe truth about a given situation, we will be at peace instead of triggered by their actions or words no matter how right or wrong they are.
As an aside, God expects us to discriminate against sin in every form. We are told to judge right from wrong. We are told what is right and wrong in the scriptures and anyone who will not accept all that the scripture says is sin, and glosses over it will answer to almight God. I will write on that topic at a future date.
2. Evil spirits attach to our pain based belief systems. That is their job. It is their assignment. Nobody is exempt. 1 Peter 5:8 says, “Be alert and of a sober (clear) mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” Satan is searching to destroy any who follow after God because God is his enemy so His followers are also his enemy. We are in the middle of a war zone and if the enemy can turn us against each other, he wins the battle. His only successful weapon is what he can convince us to believe. He does that by whispering lies while we are in pain. Those lies make us feel justified in the moment but will destroy not only us, but those who are wounded by our reactions to our own belief systems. Please deal with your emotions before speaking to others about how “they hurt you!” You do not have the right before God to hurt them back with your words and actions. You have a God given responsibility to shield everyone from your reactions. I have to remind myself of that every day. Everyone struggles with this.
3. Christians are our fellow warriors against the spiritual forces that are determined to destroy us. We need to start acting like team players instead of engaging in petty inner fighting. The results are not petty, they are devastating. If there is someone who is weaker than we are, we must stop venting through our “teaching.” We become a stumbling block to them. When we react to each other, we are siding with the devil. That sounds harsh but it is very true! We need to develop the self discipline of going to the Lord to learn truth about our situations instead of venting on each other.
4. Denying that we have demons and cosmic spirits attached to us is to deny scriptural truth about how evil spirits work in relation to our belief systems. The only human being ever to walk this earth without spiritual attachments is Jesus Christ. Even He had cosmic spirits who were assigned by the devil to try to destroy Him. Since that is true, what makes us so much better than He was, that we deny we have them by assignment?
5. We must make sure we understand the spiritual realm and how it works. In Matt. 10:16, Jesus said, “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as wise as serpents and as gentle as doves.” In order to have that kind of wisdom, we must understand the enemy. We may like to only read the parts of scripture that are nice and uplifting, but if we do not study all of scripture, including the things about the evil spirits and those who follow them, we will never be prepared to win in battle much less win the war. The wolves that Christ has sent us out among are the evil spirits that Ephesians 6 tells us how to stand against.
6. We are our own worst enemies. Our fallen sinful nature points at others as being the trouble we go through when our real trouble is not the events of this evil world but the evil spirits who try (and often succeed) to get us to attack each other instead of seeking truth and standing firm in the faith.
7. We must acknowledge where we are spiritually and ask God to show us what is still in our hearts that prevents His kingdom from being fully engaged in our hearts and lives. We all have issues. We are human and still in this fallen world with a fallen nature. We will not be fully free until we see God face to face. But we must strive to become more and more like Christ. Our spiritual senses must be fully engaged at all times.
8. Just because we hear something does not mean it came from God. 1 John 4:1 says, “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God…” Then verse 2 says, “This is how you can recognize the spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is from God.” That means, when you hear thoughts or feel impressed upon to do or say something, test the spirit with those words. “Tell me that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh.” The spirit must answer and if they do not say exactly those words to you, or they refuse to obey, they are not from God. Do not follow their instruction. It will blow up in your face.
9. As Christians, our lives are not our own. We belong to Jesus Christ. It is not about us but about Him. Our entire goal in life as servants of the most high God is obedience in every aspect of our lives. We cannot obey if we will not study. We cannot obey when the devil owns part of our hearts. Engage in daily mind renewal to free yourself from the beliefs that are not aligned with God’s truth.
I hope this is helpful to you in whatever situation you are in. May God bless and strengthen you as you continue to seek Him in all you do.