An Introduction to Spiritual Warfare - Part 2

Are Christians at Risk?

If the devil can control and influence people's minds and actions, are Christians at risk? The answer is "yes," Christians can be influenced and attacked by Satan and his demons:

  • According to Acts 4:32-37, believers were selling their homes and possessions to share the proceeds with needy people. Ananias and his wife Sapphira sold their house to give the money to the apostles, which indicates that they were believers as well. However, the enemy filled Ananias' and his wife's hearts and minds with greed and deception, which means that he can attack and influence the thoughts, feelings, and actions of Christians as well as non-Christians:

    "Then Peter said, "Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land?"" (Acts 5:3)

  • The apostle Paul was concerned that Christians will have their minds led astray by the devil:

    "But I [Paul] am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent's cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ." (2 Corinthians 11:3)

  • The Holy Spirit Himself says that Christians will be deceived by demons:

    "The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron." (1 Timothy 4:1-2)

  • The apostle Peter rebuked Jesus and denied that Christ would suffer and die. Peter did not fully understand the implications of Christ's death, but Jesus knew that it was actually Satan speaking through Peter who was denying the sacrificial death of Jesus:

    "Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. "Never, Lord!" he said. "This [speaking of Jesus' death] shall never happen to you!" Jesus turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men."" (Matthew 16:22-23)
  • Christians are told to submit to God and to resist the devil. This would not be necessary if Satan were powerless to attack Christians:

    "Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." (James 4:7)

    "Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings." (1 Peter 5:8)

  • Christians are told to put on the full armor of God in order to stand against the devil's schemes and to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. This would not be necessary if Satan were powerless to attack Christians:

    "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes." (Ephesians 6:10-11)

    "In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one." (Ephesians 6:16)

  • Satan does not just attack Christians directly, he also accuses Christians before God day and night:

    "The great dragon was hurled down--that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. Then I [the apostle John] heard a loud voice in heaven say: "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down."" (Revelation 12:9-10)

    "Then he [an angel] showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him. The LORD said to Satan, "The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?"" (Zechariah 3:1-2)

Can Christians Be "Possessed" by Demons?

Becoming a Christian removes the penalty of your past sins, but it does not necessarily remove the effects of your past sins. For example, if your body was damaged in some way by drugs or alcohol before you became a Christian, you probably weren't instantly healed the moment you got saved. You might still have some of the effects of your past sins to deal with. In a similar way, if you have taken part in occult practices or other demonic activities then you may have opened yourself up to the possibility of being afflicted by demonic spirits.

Christian counselors with decades of experience in dealing with demonic afflictions report that when the Holy Spirit enters a person's heart at the moment of salvation, this does not automatically cause all of the demons to leave. By sinning we give demons legal rights over areas of our lives, and some of these demons may still be around even after the Holy Spirit comes to dwell inside us. Consider for example that Satan "accuses [us] before our God day and night" (Revelation 12:10), which means that God allows the presence of Satan in His Throneroom (see also Job 1:6 and 2:1 where Satan presented himself before the Lord). This being the case, it opens the possibility that the Holy Spirit allows the presence of demons to co-exist with Him inside a Christian when they have the legal right to be there because of our sins. If we say that the Holy Spirit absolutely cannot or will not dwell in the presence of evil then we are forgetting that He dwells within the heart of our sinful, evil, corrupt, fallen flesh. This idea that Christians can be afflicted by demons may be difficult for many people to accept, so let me simply refer you to the spiritual warfare section of your local Christian bookstore for further study. An excellent resource is The Handbook for Spiritual Warfare by Dr. Ed Murphy (see chapters 53 to 56, for example).

Those who are afflicted by demons are usually not aware that their problems are spiritual in nature. This means that you or I might be suffering from demonic affliction or oppression without even knowing it. We might be suffering from physical infirmities, emotional problems, problems with recurring sin in our life, problems dealing with things such as anger, lust, pornography, homosexuality, and so on, all of which can have a demonic origin. For example, there was a woman in Luke 13:10-16 who was bent over for 18 years and could not straighten up (which we might diagnose as a form of scoliosis today), and Jesus said that her physical infirmity was caused by an afflicting spirit. When Jesus cast the evil spirit out, her physical infirmity immediately disappeared and she was able to stand up straight. Scripture also speaks of lying spirits (1 Kings 22:23), a spirit of dizziness (Isaiah 19:14), a spirit of prostitution (Hosea 5:4), a deaf and mute spirit (Mark 9:25), a spirit of fear (Romans 8:15), a spirit of stupor (Romans 11:8), a spirit of timidity (2 Timothy 1:7), a spirit of falsehood (1 John 4:6), and so on. These are possible examples of afflicting spirits, and there are many other ways in which evil spirits can afflict people.

Please understand that I am not speaking of demon possession, I am talking about demonic affliction. Demons do not "possess" anything, especially human beings, because possession means ownership and they do not own anything or anyone. The English word "possessed" is not the best translation from the original Greek, but unfortunately this is the term that has been used in many versions of the Bible. A better word is "demonized," which covers the range from mild afflictions to partial control of the person by evil spirits. Christians can be demonized both from within and without. Christians can come under partial control of demonic forces through such things as taking part in occultic activities. Again, I am not talking about demon-possession such as in the movie, "The Exorcist," I am talking about demonization which can range from mild to severe.

There is a self-deliverance procedure in my article called How to Cast Afflicting Spirits Out of Your Life which may help you rid yourself of demonic afflictions (physical or mental) that may be hindering your walk with Christ. I and many others can personally attest that this type of self-deliverance procedure has allowed us to gain victory over areas of sin or physical affliction in our lives which we could not otherwise get victory over.

All Christians Are Involved in Spiritual Warfare

Now that we have seen that the devil can and does try to attack us and influence our minds, our thoughts, our beliefs, and our actions, can you see that we are all involved in spiritual warfare, every one of us, whether we like it or not, whether we even realize it or not? Picture a soldier on a battlefield who can't see or hear any enemy and therefore doesn't believe there is an enemy out there, so he wanders around without his weapons, not carrying out his assigned duties, completely defenseless and vulnerable, stumbling into the enemy's camp without even being aware of it. That soldier won't last long, yet that is precisely the way that many of us live. We don't know that there is a war being fought in the spiritual plane, we don't understand that there is an enemy of pure evil out there and that we are God's soldiers in this spiritual battle. We don't understand that God has an assigned place for each and every Christian or that we have all been given spiritual gifts and spiritual weapons (defensive and offensive) for waging the battle in the heavenlies while we are here on earth.

Our Spiritual Armor

Notice the descriptions of weapons and armor that Paul uses. We are told to put on the full armor of God, which includes the belt (or girdle) of Truth, the breastplate of Righteousness, the shoes (or sandals) of Peace, the shield of Faith, and the helmet of Salvation. These are descriptions of the defensive armor worn by first-century Roman soldiers, but they are given spiritual application by Paul. They are intended to protect every vulnerable area, and just like Roman soldiers we are to wear this armor daily. The two offensive weapons that we have are the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God (this is the weapon Jesus used in Luke 4:1-13 (above) to defeat Satan in the wilderness) and praying in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. The apostle Paul points out that we do not wage war as the world does, our weapons have divine power to demolish the strongholds of the enemy. Notice the commands we are given (these are not mere suggestions!) and notice the wording which indicates that all Christians are soldiers in this spiritual war:

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes." (Ephesians 6:10-11)

"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)

"Therefore put on the full armor 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)

"Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace." (Ephesians 6:14-15)

"In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one." (Ephesians 6:16)

"Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." (Ephesians 6:17)

"And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints." (Ephesians 6:18)

"For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds." (2 Corinthians 10:3-4)

"in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left." (2 Corinthians 6:7)

"Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs-- he wants to please his commanding officer." (2 Timothy 2:3-4)

"to Apphia our sister, to Archippus our fellow soldier and to the church that meets in your home" (Philemon 1:2)

"But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs." (Philippians 2:25)

Every Christian Has a Role Assigned by God

Jesus said, "on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it" (Matthew 16:18). The Greek words which are translated "will not overcome it" literally mean "will not prove stronger." In other words, the gates of hell will not prove stronger than the Church, the body of Christ. When we share the Gospel with someone and that person trusts Christ for his salvation, we have literally snatched him out of the gates of hell, out of the enemy's hands. No matter where we are or what our situations may be, God considers each one of us to be in the ministry in some manner. He has assigned each one of us roles to perform in His service, and He has given us spiritual gifts to equip us for our own individual ministries. Sadly, most of us are too wrapped up in our busy lives to even notice. When we focus too much on the physical (looks, money, comforts, possessions, "things") we leave ourselves wide open to spiritual attack (which is often very subtle and insidious) and we fail to live out God's purposes for our lives.

The Body of Christ

We need to understand that every Christian is a member of the body of Christ, and that we all have vital roles to perform for doing His work on earth and fighting the spiritual battle that is being waged in the heavenlies. A human body has eyes, ears, arms, legs, etc., but in the body of Christ it is Christians themselves who fulfill the necessary functions based on where God wants us to be, what He wants us to do, and what spiritual gifts He has equipped us with:

"Now about spiritual gifts, brothers, I do not want you to be ignorant. You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols. Therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, "Jesus be cursed," and no one can say, "Jesus is Lord," except by the Holy Spirit. There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines." (1 Corinthians 12:1-11)

"The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free--and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don't need you!" On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it." (1 Corinthians 12:12-27)

"Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man's gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord." (Romans 12:4-11)

  Are You Giving the Devil a "Foothold" in Your Life? (Ephesians 4:27)

Scripture tells us that we must examine ourselves and test our beliefs to make sure they are solidly grounded in the Truth. We must be careful that we do not give the devil a foothold in our lives or become swayed by false teachings:

"Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you--unless, of course, you fail the test?" (2 Corinthians 13:5)

"Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil." (1 Thessalonians 5:21-22)

"and do not give the devil a foothold." (Ephesians 4:27)

"The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron." (1 Timothy 4:1-2)

"Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world." (1 John 4:1)

"Jesus answered: "Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, 'I am the Christ, ' and will deceive many."" (Matthew 24:4-5)

"At that time if anyone says to you, 'Look, here is the Christ!' or, 'There he is!' do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect--if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time." (Matthew 24:23-24)

"But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent's cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough." (2 Corinthians 11:3-4)

"For this reason, when I could stand it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith. I was afraid that in some way the tempter might have tempted you and our efforts might have been useless." (1 Thessalonians 3:5)

"But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them --bringing swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute." (2 Peter 2:1-2)

"For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths." (2 Timothy 4:3-4)

What Are You Feeding Yourself Spiritually?

In light of these strong warnings, have you ever examined yourself (and your environment) and honestly and prayerfully tested your beliefs against Scripture? What are you feeding yourself spiritually through activities that you're involved in, through books, magazines, TV shows, movies, radio, etc., and what types of beliefs have you begun to embrace because of the things you are exposed to? What organizations are you involved with, such as "lodges," "orders," "leagues," "societies," "masons," etc., and are you aware of the spiritual philosophies they teach as you go deeper into the organization? Do you know for sure that your church is not teaching false doctrines, have you ever asked for their statement of beliefs and compared it with the Bible? Remember David Koresh and that Waco raid a few years ago or Jim Jones and the poisoned Kool-Aid murder/suicide in Guyana awhile back? People have a tendency to follow leaders who have lots of charisma instead of following what their Bibles say.

Do you try to "take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ" (2 Corinthians 10:5)? As a Christian, have you ever gone to a palm reader, a fortune teller, a seance, a "trance channeler," played with an Ouija board, followed your horoscope, purchased "healing" crystals, gotten involved with hypnosis, "visualization," transcendental or other forms of meditation, yoga, martial arts, or other activities associated with "Eastern" philosophies? Do you believe in reincarnation, karma, fate, evolution, out-of-body experiences, psychics, the prophecies of Nostradamus, UFOs, "near-death experiences," past life experiences, good luck charms, voodoo, superstitions, etc.? Do you own statues or jewelry or other objects which depict pagan gods or goddesses or have occult symbols on them (such as an Egyptian "ankh," which looks like a cross with a circle on top)?

I am not necessarily saying that all of these beliefs and practices are equally sinful or evil, but some of them such as trance channeling, mediums, seances, voodoo, etc., are quite obviously sinful and evil in nature because they are denounced in Scripture (Deuteronomy 18:10-12). Going to a palm reader or a fortune teller, playing with an Ouija board, and so on, may seem harmless enough, but we have already seen that there are sinister unseen forces of evil at work in the spiritual realm. Satan and his demons are masters of cunning, subtle deceptions which draw the unwary deeper and deeper into his territory as they make a "small" compromise here, believe another "little" lie there, and so on. Soldiers in wartime do not make little "harmless" excursions into enemy-occupied territory on a lark, and neither should we be dabbling in areas which are not of God, because at that point we are voluntarily entering into the devil's domain.

Notice that reincarnation, "karma," past life experiences, and similar beliefs are also refuted in Scripture ("Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment" - Hebrews 9:27), but what about such things as yoga, martial arts, meditation, visualization, "healing" crystals, and so on? Don't they potentially have some positive exercise and health benefits? If you are involved in some of these things, it would be wise to ask yourself, "What spiritual philosophies am I being fed as I do these things?" For example, most martial arts studios require students to bow to a shrine or to an emblem on a flag or to the master (the teacher), or to do something similar. Often there are statements that the students must repeat over and over which are intended to instill a certain set of character traits in the students (gentleness, humility, and so on). Make it a point to become fully aware of any spiritual philosophies that you or your family are being exposed to, and listen to the Holy Spirit within you to discern whether you have peace concerning these things.

Sometimes Christians are swayed by seemingly Biblical concepts such as "going to the light when you die and being enveloped in total Love" (as those who have had "near-death experiences" often describe) or by the prophecies of Nostradamus or other psychics. But once again, these things must be interpreted in light of Scripture. There is a book called Embraced by the Light by a woman named Betty Eadie in which she describes her near-death experience, and many people have found comfort in her descriptions of "Jesus" and of the "utter explosion of love" she felt while she was in "heaven." But is this the Jesus of the Bible? Many of the things she says about her version of Jesus and heaven are totally out of character with the real Jesus and heaven described in God's written Word, and there are several books and magazine articles which refute Betty Eadie's book in light of Scripture (such as Deceived by the Light by Doug Groothuis). But what about the prophecies of Nostradamus? It turns out that he was a sixteenth-century seer who was schooled in spells and incantations and other "magic arts," and he used numerology and occultish (i.e. satanic) forms of divination to come up with his prophecies. People say that his prophecies are amazingly accurate, but we need to have some discernment here. His methods came from occultish, satanic practices, and for this reason alone he should be dismissed by Christians. Consider also that the apostle Paul encountered "a slave girl who had a spirit by which she predicted the future." (Acts 16:16). Notice that this girl was predicting the future, and notice that it was because of an evil spirit. Therefore, the fact that Nostradamus' predictions seem to be accurate in some cases and the fact that he is known to have been schooled in the occult should make us realize where his prophecies really came from. His alleged accuracy should not influence us to believe him in any way or to be impressed by him or to feed our spirits with his non-Biblical predictions.

If you own any artwork that has occult symbols or pictures of pagan gods or goddesses on them, be aware that these may be more dangerous than you realize. Idols are associated with demons in Scripture, and the Israelites in the Old Testament were told over and over to smash and completely destroy all sacred images and idols from other cultures. Notice carefully what God's attitude is toward any artwork or objects associated with pagan beliefs:

"They made him jealous with their foreign gods and angered him with their detestable idols. They sacrificed to demons, which are not God-- gods they had not known, gods that recently appeared, gods your fathers did not fear." (Deuteronomy 32:16-17)

"They worshiped their idols, which became a snare to them. They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to demons." (Psalm 106:36-37)

"Consider the people of Israel: Do not those who eat the sacrifices participate in the altar? Do I mean then that a sacrifice offered to an idol is anything, or that an idol is anything? No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons." (1 Corinthians 10:18-20)

"Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'When you cross the Jordan into Canaan, drive out all the inhabitants of the land before you. Destroy all their carved images and their cast idols, and demolish all their high places.'" (Numbers 33:51-53)

"This is what you are to do to them: Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire. For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession." (Deuteronomy 7:5-6)

"Destroy completely all the places on the high mountains and on the hills and under every spreading tree where the nations you are dispossessing worship their gods. Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones and burn their Asherah poles in the fire; cut down the idols of their gods and wipe out their names from those places." (Deuteronomy 12:2-3)

It is clear what God's attitude is towards anything associated with pagan (i.e. non-Christian) religious beliefs and practices.

Stay Focused on Jesus

The point of this discussion is to get you to take a look at the beliefs and practices that may have subtly crept into your life. These things may have seemed harmless or even healthy at the time, but they may have a dark spiritual side when examined in light of God's Word. Think about the music you or your children listen to, the TV shows and movies you watch, the games you play or allow your children to play (there are many, many occultic or demon-oriented video games, card games, board games, etc., on the market), the way you celebrate Halloween, and so on. How are these things de-sensitizing your spirit towards immoral sexual activity, violence, crude language, the occult, New Age philosophies, and so on? We must always set our minds on things above, not on earthly things (Colossians 3:2) and fix our eyes on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2) and take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). We must be careful not to be taken captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ (Colossians 2:8).

Always remember that our focus is to be on Jesus and not on the enemy. As Christians we are all victorious through Christ our Savior, but we must take hold of that victory each and every day by putting on the full armor of God and submitting completely to God's will. Stay focused on Jesus, your Savior, your Redeemer, your Lord, your King. Let Him be the object of your attention, your love, your praise, your adoration, and your worship.

References for further reading

There is a self-deliverance procedure in my article called How to Cast Afflicting Spirits Out of Your Life which may help you rid yourself of demonic afflictions (physical or mental) that may be hindering your walk with Christ. I and many others can personally attest that this type of self-deliverance procedure has allowed us to gain victory over areas of sin or physical affliction in our lives which we could not otherwise get victory over.

There are also a number of good books on spiritual warfare, including:

  • The Handbook for Spiritual Warfare by Dr. Ed Murphy
  • The Adversary and Overcoming the Adversary by Mark I. Bubeck
  • The Believer's Guide to Spiritual Warfare by Thomas B. White
  • Breaking Strongholds in Your City, edited by C. Peter Wagner.
  • Possessing the Gates of the Enemy by Cindy Jacobs
  • The Last of the Giants by George Otis, Jr.
  • That None Should Perish by Ed Silvoso
  • Taking Our Cities for God by John Dawson

Now that you are aware of the spiritual battle which is taking place all around us and you understand that God has given you particular spiritual gifts to be used in His service, please get involved! Don't just be a "spectator Christian" or a "pew potato" who is useless for carrying out God's purposes in saving lives here on earth. God does not want you sitting on the sidelines living life for your own pleasures and pursuits! Make yourself available to the Holy Spirit day by day, moment by moment, so that He can work through you in the role that you are meant to perform in the body of Christ, and always "keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord" (Romans 12:11). I invite you to read my article entitled Spiritual Maturity/Spiritual Authority to learn more about spiritual maturity and being a victorious disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ.


"An Introduction to Spiritual Warfare, Part Two of Two"
Last updated on 5/30/2001

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (R). NIV (R). Copyright (C) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

By Dave Root

This material is not copyrighted. Please feel free to copy and distribute it for the glory of the Lord, as long as you don't modify it or charge money for it.

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If you are going to work with ritual abuse survivors, you must also get educated if you want to be effective. And you must learn to be humble. Trauma survivors do not need to be around ignorant, modern-day Pharisees. Survivors in pain need people who will connect with them on an emotional level, get right down in there where they are, and listen. --Kathleen Sullivan