Getting Dressed for Battle
As children of God, we have power and authority over the devil. And we are to use that power and authority for good…and for service to others. That almost sounds like something you could say about a superhero, doesn’t it?
It reminds me of a letter I once received from a woman, telling me about her four-year-old son and his cousins playing together one day. They were all pretending to be superheroes. One of them exclaimed, “I’m Superman!” Another said, “I’m Superwoman!” And this lady said her son proudly wielded his imaginary sword and proclaimed, “I’m Joyce Meyer!”
What a compliment to the Christ in me! That child saw something in me that he thought was “super” and wanted to imitate! What he saw is simply a result of the work God has done in my life through His Holy Spirit. And isn’t it interesting that while the other kids’ superhero gear included a cape, his little weapon was a sword! (See Ephesians 6:17.)
We are often referred to as soldiers in the Word of God. Soldiers are well trained in combat; they carry all kinds of offensive, as well as defensive equipment, and are taught to be vigilant, alert, and aware.
No matter whether we view ourselves like soldiers or superheroes or whatever, our warfare is spiritual. And our weapons and armor are also spiritual.
Doing Warfare God’s Way
In this spiritual war, we fight on the battlefield of the mind. Every day we are subjected to unrelenting attacks in our thoughts, such as worry, fear, doubt and other concerns. The devil is behind many of our problems, and some we create ourselves.
But Ephesians 6:11 tells us to put on the full armor of God, so that [we] can take [our] stand against the devil’s schemes. Our thoughts are very important in this warfare…what we think of ourselves as well as what we think of others or of our circumstances. The reason is that 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 (NIV).
So, while the devil may have power…we have the power and authority of Jesus Christ at work in us by His Holy Spirit. Our job is to get to know God for ourselves…. get to know who we are in Him…and the power that is available to us through Him. We need to learn how to follow the Holy Spirit, because He wants to lead us in our individual battles according to what is right for each of us. God is on our side…and that already makes us more than conquerors in Him! (See Romans 8:31, 37.)
What—and What Not to Wear to Battle
In this war, there’s both offensive and defensive equipment. With our weapons we fight the enemy. And we are protected from him by our armor. Both are vitally important to our success.
Colossians 3:12-14 NIV says, Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
These verses reveal the weapons and armor of our spiritual warfare. We defeat the enemy’s tactics every time we forgive instead of hold a grudge…have patience with someone rather than rush them…speak with humility rather than arrogance.
Ephesians 4:25 tells us to put off falsehood and speak truthfully to [our] neighbor…. Verse 31 goes on to say, Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. These are things that will hinder and weigh us down in life—and certainly a spiritual battle.
The Battle Plan
The key is to learn to cooperate with the Holy Spirit as He leads you according to His purpose and plan for your life. Know that anything He asks of you; He will provide the way for you to accomplish it. God will anoint you and what He’s put in your hand. In other words, we each have our own battles to fight. You can’t wear another person’s armor; you must wear your own.
So, tighten up your belt of Truth. In other words, learn and know the truth of God’s Word…especially what His Word says about you. Then do what you know to do…do what you can…and God will do what you can’t. Don’t be so concerned about how…just trust God to do what’s right for you!
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