Understanding Spiritual Warfare: Getting Understanding Pt 1
May 10, 2017
In the subject of spiritual warfare, we look to God’s Word, which is so rich and says loads about life and how to live it.
The Bible says in Proverbs 4:7, “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” In this verse, one of the definitions from the Strong’s Concordance describes the word “wisdom” as to mean “skill” (in war). How awesome! Also, the word “principle” means “foundation” or “basis.” The last word “understanding” means “discernment” or “to perceive.” So let’s read the verse in this way, “Skill in war is the foundation thing; therefore get skill in war: and with all thy getting get discernment.” This verse can apply to us as to the importance of becoming highly skilled when it comes to spiritual warfare.
Skill is vital in every aspect of our spiritual life and the result will show up in our natural lives as well. The scripture says in Hebrews that we are considered as babes, unskilled, when we are not discerning what is good and evil. The Word of God only becomes real to us when we use or do it, not just making mental ascent to it. The Bible says, “…it becomes ours by the reason of use…” in Hebrews chapter 5. God’s plan for us is to become highly skilled in warfare and never stop applying His Word for our freedom and in turn, teach others the same skills so they too can be free. It’s called making disciples. The word “war” and “warfare” are only used five times in the New Testament and there is no reference of the devil in any of those five verses. However, that does not negate the fact that we do have an adversary that is trying to destroy us, along with our faith.
First, lets take a look at each one of these five verses, so we can get a better handle on some of the areas of opposition.
One of the first places of warfare is with our mind or thought life. It manifests as strongholds of the mind, imaginations of the mind and knowledge that wants to be the preeminence in our minds.
2 Corinthians 10:4-5 says, “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds. Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” It is having a readiness to come against all disobedience when all obedience is fulfilled.
What we think determines our actions and reactions, and even our attitudes toward every situation. Most importantly, they affect our faith. Notice in this verse it makes no reference to the devil, but only references our minds. Does that mean that all my problems aren’t just a result of the devil? I’ll try to answer that one later.
The word “captive” means, “a person who is enslaved; dominated; made or held prisoner, especially in war.” We are to dominate all of the thoughts that come into our minds! When I read between the lines in this verse it tells me that we’re the ones enslaved or held as prisoners when we let wrong thoughts dominate us. Freedom is determined when we make the choice to dominate our thoughts with what God thinks!
Romans 12:2 says, “Be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may know what is the good, acceptable, and perfect will of God.”
Beloved, we are not a powerless people when it comes to the world, the flesh and the devil! We have been given the weapons we need to get the victory over these areas! The weapons that are not carnal (flesh and blood), are these:
-The name of Jesus
-The Word of God (Sword of the Spirit)
-Infilling of the Holy Spirit
The infilling of the Holy Spirit should be evidenced by speaking in tongues, which enables us to build our faith and to pray the perfect will of God. Those three things are all we need! In the Lord’s prayer, Jesus says, “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” That should be our focus. Next go ’round, I’m going to continue with the other four scriptures in the New Testament that refer to “war” and “warfare.”
If you’re wondering about the three kingdoms I mentioned last time, just hang on. They are coming soon!
Remember this, we are all becoming wise as serpents and harmless as doves!