Know Your Enemy Pt. 4 – How to Fight Back

For the past couple of weeks I have been doing battle with a very nasty episode of bronchitis. My weapons for this battle included two visits to the Emergency Dept., a chest x-ray, antibiotics, two puffers and pain pills. After 2 1/2 weeks there are still a few minor skirmishes going on in my airways but I am finally winning the battle. I thank God for the medical helps that He has made available to me.

I also thank God for equipping me with the weapons of warfare that are needed to stand against the attacks of my enemy, the devil. Although the war has already been won through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, our enemy continues to do battle with God’s people. He knows that his time is limited and he is busy wreaking as much havoc and destruction as he can before his time runs out.

In knowing how to do battle, one must understand who and what is one’s enemy. The devil is a spiritual being and he uses spiritual weapons.

Eph 6:12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the world’s rulers, of the darkness of this age, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

In order to do battle with a spiritual being who uses spiritual weapons, we must also use spiritual weapons. We have been given these weapons through faith in Jesus Christ.

1Co 15:57 But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

1Jn 5:4 For everything that has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith. [in Jesus Christ]

We can not fight the devil in our own strength, but we can be mighty in battle when we are in God and work through God.

2Co 10:3 For though walking about in flesh, we do not war according to flesh.
2Co 10:4, 5 For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, pulling down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought into the obedience of Christ;

When going into battle, you not only need weapons, you also need protective armour. God not only supplies the ultimate weapons, He also supplies the ultimate armour.

Eph 6:11 Put on the whole armor of God so that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

Eph 6:13 Therefore take to yourselves the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Eph 6:14 Therefore stand, having your loins girded about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness
Eph 6:15 and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.
Eph 6:16 Above all, take the shield of faith, with which you shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
Eph 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God,
Eph 6:18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching to this very thing with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.

Truth.  Righteousness.  Peace.  Faith.  Salvation.  Word of God.  Prayer. These make up your armour and your weapons and are “mighty through God”!

So how do we win the fight against our enemy the devil?

Jas 4:7 Therefore submit yourselves to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Submit to God, put on His armour and wield His sword, which is His Word.

The following scriptures are my prayer for you:

1Co 16:13 Watch! Stand fast in the faith! Be men! Be strong!

Eph 6:10 Finally, my brothers, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.

 

Blessings

 

 

 

Know Your Enemy Pt. 3 – His Weapons of Warfare

In order to be successful in a battle, you need to understand your enemy’s tactics and weaponry. If the enemy is using cannons, being armed with sticks isn’t gonna cut it!

The devil’s first attack on earth happened in the Garden of Eden when he appeared to Eve in the form of a serpent.

Gen 3:1 Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made. And he said to the woman, Is it so that God has said, You shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

Interesting to note that the term “serpent” used in the above verse comes from a root word meaning “to hiss or whisper a magic spell or to be an enchanter.

Notice how the serpent is described as being “cunning” – this can also be defined as “crafty” – and both terms are used in a negative sense.

With “craftiness” and “cunningness” the devil twisted God’s commandment in order to deceive Eve into disobeying God.

Gen 3:1 Now the snake was wiser [cunning]than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, Has God truly said that you may not take of the fruit of any tree in the garden?
Gen 3:2 And the woman said, We may take of the fruit of the trees in the garden:
Gen 3:3 But of the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden, God has said, If you take of it or put your hands on it, death will come to you.
Gen 3:4 And the snake said, Death will not certainly come to you:
Gen 3:5 For God sees that on the day when you take of its fruit, your eyes will be open, and you will be as gods, having knowledge of good and evil. (BBE)

The devil makes us question God, then he twists God’s word and lies to us about God, and finally he puts temptation in our path.

To deceive means to cause someone to wander or go astray from safety, truth or virtue. The following definition is from Webster’s Dictionary:

1. The act of deceiving or misleading.

All deception is a misapplication of the established signs used to communicate thoughts.

2. The state of being deceived or misled. Incautious and inexperienced youth is peculiarly exposed to deception.

3. Artifice practiced; cheat; as, a scheme is all a deception.

Interesting to note the above comment that “all deception is a misapplication of the established signs…” That is exactly what the devil does! He takes the established word of God and misapplies it or causes us to misapply it so that we are confused and easy to deceive.

Deception is the devil’s main weapon against mankind.

Gen 3:13 And Jehovah God said to the woman, What is this you have done? And the woman said, The serpent deceived me, and I ate.

2Co 11:3 But I fear lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve in his craftiness, so your thoughts should be corrupted from the simplicity due to Christ. [the term “beguiled” also means to seduce, delude and deceive]

1Ti 2:14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. (Note that Adam was not deceived – he knew better but chose to do wrong anyways – but that is a topic for another post)

Mat 24:5 For many {man under the influence of the devil} will come in My name, saying, I am Christ, and will deceive many.

Mat 24:11 And many false prophets will rise and deceive many

2Jn 1:7 For many deceivers have entered into the world, who do not confess Jesus Christ coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the anti-christ.

Rev 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet doing signs before it, (by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast), and those who had worshiped his image.

Rev 20:2,3 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years.  And he cast him into the abyss and shut him up and set a seal on him, that he should deceive the nations no more until the thousand years should be fulfilled.

Rev 20:7,8 And when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be loosed out of his prison.  And he will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, …

Rev 20:10 And the Devil who deceived them was cast into the Lake of Fire and Brimstone, …

Another weapon the devil uses is temptation. Webster defines temptation as:

 The act of tempting; enticement to evil by arguments, by flattery, or by the offer of some real or apparent good.

1. Solicitation of the passions; enticements to evil proceeding from the prospect of pleasure or advantage.

The devil even tried to tempt Jesus!

Mat 4:3 And when the tempter came to Him, he said, If You are the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

Luk 4:1,2 And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness  forty days, being tempted by the Devil.

1Th 3:5 For this reason I also, when I could no longer endure the uncertainty, sent to know the condition of your faith, lest perchance the Tempter might have tempted you and our labour have been lost. (WNT)

Since there are some who blame God for temptation, I would like to include the following verse:

Jas 1:13 Let no one say when passing through trial, “My temptation is from God;” for God is incapable of being tempted to do evil, and He Himself tempts no one. (WNT)

The devil also uses lies as weapons against us.

Joh 8:44 The father whose sons you are is the Devil; and you desire to do what gives him pleasure. *He* was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand firm in the truth–for there is no truth in him. Whenever he utters his lie, he utters it out of his own store; for he is a liar, and the father of lies.

The enemy’s arsenal: deception, temptation and lies. Let us not be “ignorant of his devices”. 2Cor 2:11

Blessings

Know Your Enemy Pt 2 – His Agenda

Our enemy, the devil, has an agenda – the complete turning away of man from God and the destruction of mankind, particularly those of the family of God.

Rev 12:3… And behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads!
Rev 12:4 … And the dragon stood before the woman being about to bear, so that when she bears he might devour her child.

Rev_12:13 And when the dragon saw that he was cast to the earth, he persecuted the woman who bore the man child .

Rev 12:17 And the dragon was enraged over the woman, and went to make war with the rest of her seed, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Joh 10:10 The thief does not come except to steal and to kill and to destroy.

The devil is VERY busy carrying out his agenda.

Job 2:2 And Jehovah said to Satan, From where do you come? And Satan answered Jehovah and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

1Pe 5:8 Be sensible and vigilant, because your adversary the Devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking someone he may devour;

We have an enemy. He has an agenda to destroy us. He is actively pursuing his agenda. So – BE SENSIBLE AND VIGILANT!

Blessings

(My next post will deal with our enemy’s weapons of warfare.)

 

 

 

Know Your Enemy Pt.1 – In the Beginning

In my last post I wrote about the subject of  Evil. In the following series of posts I will write about the originator or instigator of evil – the devil.

 

“Speak of the devil” is the short form of the figurative expression “Speak of the devil and he doth appear”.

The expression comes from the Middle Ages and was a superstitious warning against speaking directly about the Devil who might appear and cause trouble. Since that time, there remains a hesitancy on the part of some Christians to even talk about the subject of the devil. In fact, some even suggest that there is no such entity even though Jesus acknowledged that there was a devil!

Mat 4:1 At that time Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the Desert in order to be tempted by the Devil.

We are in a battle for our very lives, both present and eternal, and we can not adequately fight a battle if we don’t know that we have an enemy or if we don’t understand the characteristics and tactics of the enemy.

“So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss. Sun Tzu, The Art of War”

The devil’s story begins in Heaven.

Gen 1:1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

In Genesis 1:1 we are told that in the beginning, God made the heavens and the earth and everything in them. The “everything” in the heavens must also have included angels, of which the devil was one. In fact, he is described as being “a shining star” and “son of the morning”. Unfortunately for us, pride and selfish desire got the better of him and he sought to elevate himself, a created being, above God, the Creator.

Isa 14:12 How you are fallen from the heavens, O shining star, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations!
Isa 14:13 For you have said in your heart, I will go up to the heavens, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.
Isa 14:14 I will go up above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High.

Eze 28:14,15 You were the anointed cherub that covers, and I had put you in the holy height of God where you were; you have walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. You were perfect in your ways from the day that you were created, until iniquity was found in you.

Eze 28:17 Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; you have spoiled your wisdom because of your brightness. I will cast you to the ground; I will put you before kings, that they may behold you.

(The above two sets of scriptures were written about the King of Babylon and the King of Tyre, respectively, but they are an allegorical description of the power behind them, the devil.)

The devil was not content with his own rebellion, he strove to influence and encourage other angels, a third of the heavenly host, to rebel against God. The devil started the first “holy war”.

Rev 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels going out to the fight with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels made war,

Rev 12:4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and cast them onto the earth.

The devil and his angels lost the battle in Heaven and God threw them out of the Kingdom of Heaven so they went down to the earth.

Rev 12:8 And they were overcome, and there was no more place for them in heaven.
Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was forced down, the old snake, who is named the Evil One and Satan, by whom all the earth is turned from the right way; he was forced down to the earth, and his angels were forced down with him. (BBE)

To summarize, the devil was originally created by God as an angel of light. As that angel, the devil became filled with pride and selfish desire. He wanted to be as exalted as God. To that end, he rebelled against God and led other angels into joining that rebellion. It is obvious from what happened that angels were created with free will. The devil and his fallen angels lost the heavenly battle that had ensued and God cast them out of Heaven.

Having lost the battle in Heaven, the devil turned his attentions to trying to corrupt and destroy God’s creation on earth, chiefly – Mankind.

That is the topic of my next post.

1Pe 5:8 Be sensible and vigilant, because your adversary the Devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking someone he may devour;

Blessings