GET TOGETHER- REMEMBER WHO THE BATTLE IS WITH
Eph 6:11,12 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Today we live in a culture that is highly secularized and often opposed to a Biblical worldview. People who believe that God ordained marriage as between one man and one woman are often labeled “haters”. And people who believe in the sanctity of life in the womb are often termed as being backward and as anti-women.
Sadly, sometimes Christians have been lured into getting into fleshy battles over these things by resorting to name calling etc. and playing right into the enemy’s hands. I believe that drawing Christians into fleshly battles is certainly a wile of the devil to attempt to hurt the Christian’s testimony and to draw he, or she into a battle using weapons that we are not to fight with.
We are told in this verse that we are not battling against flesh and blood. We are battling against demonic forces in the spirit realm. If you retaliate by calling someone a name that is calling you a name you are playing right into the enemy’s hands.
This doesn’t mean that we don’t speak the truth. But we speak the truth in love. Jesus said it this way Joh 6:63 “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.” (NKJV) This past week the Holy Spirit Has been given me the names of prominent talk show hosts, entertainers, leaders of nations, and CEO’S of corporations that oppose the Gospel and has had me to begin to call out their names for their salvation.
This past week as I watched a couple of specials on the life of Billy Graham I saw how when he went into places that were hostile to the Gospel he never compromised the truth, but you could also see that he had a love and a concern for the souls of those who opposed the Gospel. That included political leaders that he probably didn’t agree with on a lot of things, talk show hosts, the Russian Politburo and many other challenging places.
What if that next hostile talk show host became an evangelist? What if those political leaders that are so hostile to the Gospel were convicted of their sin? Remember our battle is not against flesh and blood.
I think Stephen is a great example. He didn’t compromise a word of truth. It got him was stoned to death. But as he was being stoned to death these were his last words “Ac 7:60 Then he knelt and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep. (NKJV) Well we know of one guy that would get saved as a result of that prayer. Ac 8:1 “ Now Saul was consenting to his death. At that time a great persecution arose against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.”
We see that Stephen knew that his real enemy was not those who were stoning him, but the forces of evil who were behind it. One man would eventually get saved that would write at least thirteen Epistles of the New Testament. He would go on three missionary journeys’. Billions have been saved due to Saul of Tarsus becoming the Apostle Paul. The church was scattered, but as they were being persecuted they began to explode in growth. Perhaps the Holy Spirit is allowing some of this persecution to come so that we have a greater passion for Christ and leading others to Christ than our favorite sports teams, or other things that we have a greater passion for than Him and His call upon our lives.
Do you see those who oppose you as people who could possibly be as fervent serving Jesus Christ as they are opposing Him? That is what happened to Paul. I am glad that Stephen didn’t get drawn into a fleshly battle that day. And don’t forget he did preach the truth, but he preached the truth in love. Jesus had this to say about how we should respond to those who hate us for the Gospel. Mt 5:44 “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.”
That is how you battle in the Spirit and not in the flesh. Paul had this to say about how we are wage the battle in 2Co 10:4 “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.”(NKJV) We walk in victory by praying, fasting, loving, worshipping, and serving God and others.
Let us Pray
Lord I am not denying that there is a battle. It is a battle for the souls of men, women, a nation, and the world. Fill us so much with Your Holy Spirit Lord that we are fully armed with those upside down weapons of love that win people rather than defeat them.
In Jesus Name
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