Are You Ready to Rumble?© E. E. Perry 2001
"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" (Ephesians 6:12).
During Desert Shield and Desert Storm, coalition soldiers marked their vehicles with an upside down "V". This was done because many of the countries who were in the coalition had the same type of military vehicles as Iraq. The triangle marked them as part of the coalition and prevented coalition forces from firing on friendly troops. When soldiers go into battle, they must know how to identify the enemy. When we find ourselves in spiritual battle, we must know how to identify the real enemy.
Paul makes it clear that the battle is not against other people. We fight a spiritual battle against a spiritual enemy. Paul describes a highly organized force of evil spirits in league with Satan. Rulers, authorities, and powers show these demons have a strong public influence. They are out to cause destruction and sin in the world. Their main goal is to undermine the morality, goodness and love that God teaches us in His word.
The last group is "spiritual forces in heavenly places." Some say this means demons in charge of religion. Satan's forces are busy at work in churches around the world. They want Christians to fight and bicker among themselves. They want pastors and spiritual leaders to fall into grievous sin. They want to divide the church into little groups that don't like the other groups. To a point, they have succeeded, because there are so many denominations, but many Christians are beginning to cross denominational lines, reuniting the church.
Christians must realize their battle is not with Disneyland, abortion doctors, or any other person. Their battle is against the evil forces of Satan. They are spiritual beings, and we cannot fight them in a physical manner. We have to fight them in a spiritual manner. Hit them where it hurts.
How do we fight them? First, we must realize that we cannot fight them on our own. This would equate to a soldier armed only with a rifle charging into battle against a battalion of armoured tanks: Suicide. If we attempt to battle these demons on our own we will fail. I have tried it. I failed.
We can only succeed in battle when we prepare for battle.
"Therefore put on the full armour 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" (Ephesians 6:13).
A Bible teacher once recommended that when we see a "therefore" in the Bible, we need to investigate what it is "there for." Since we fight a battle against spiritual forces and not against people, we need to put on specialized spiritual armour called the armour of God. Then, when the "evil day" comes, we will stand our ground.
I do not believe "the evil day" means the Great Tribulation or any prophetic disaster. I believe "the evil day" is the day of attack. In a Christian's walk, he will face many evil days. Days where Satan repeatedly attacks. The closer he gets to Christ, the more frequent these attacks become. Both Christians and non-Christians will face evil days. The difference is the armour they wear.
Jesus told a parable about two builders. The foolish builder built his house on sand. The wise builder built his house on a rock. The storm came and the foolish builder's house fell, and the wise builder's house stood strong. The foundation made the difference. The Christian has the rock foundation of Christ, and the non-Christian has the shifting-sand foundation of the world.
We are told to
Satan's forces are spiritual beings. We are in a spiritual wrestling match with these forces. They attack in a spiritual manner. We need to prepare each day for battle by putting on the armour of God and praying. Our battle is not with people, but the evil forces of Satan's army.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society.
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