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Spiritual Warfare for Survivors
IN I PETER 5:8-9 we are reminded to be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), to be vigilant and cautious at all times, for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring (in fierce hunger) seeking someone to seize upon and devour. WITHSTAND HIM! Be firm in faith against his assault. That means be rooted, established, strong, immovable and determined, knowing that the same identical sufferings are appointed to your brotherhood (the whole Body of Christians) throughout the world.
Recently, a brother in the Lord and myself were sharing our thoughts on Scripture when the revelation of how satan attempts to infiltrate our minds came to light. I worked for a number of years in a Youth Authority setting and often wondered how suddenly a riot would break out or a youth would do a real stupid act. Many times satan plants ideas, thoughts, or threats into a person’s mind to see if he will act upon the idea or suggestion. Satan seeks to kill, steal and devour mankind. Christians are his favorite target. For example, I have seen rumors spread like wildfire, causing tremendous havoc, when a quick prayer to God could have avoided much sorrow and confusion.
One of the primary emphases in Mark’s Gospel is Jesus’ overriding concern to defeat satan and his demonic powers. In 3:27 this is phrased as “tying up the strong man (i.e. satan) and robbing his house”, thus setting free those who are enslaved to satan. This power over satan is especially evident in the driving out of demons or evil spirits.
Demons which inhabit people are mentioned in the New Testament in referring to those who suffer from satan’s oppression and influence because of the indwelling of an evil spirit. Jesus was in constant warfare with satan and his demons. In the Gospel of Mark, for example, numerous encounters are described: see 1:23-28, 32-34, 39; 3:10-12; 5:1-20; 6:7, 13; 9:14-29.
Demons are spirit beings who have personality and intelligence. They are members of satan’s kingdom and enemies of God and humans (see Matthew 4:10 and Ephesians 6:12). Through His miracles, Jesus often attacks the power of satan, and it is clearly stated that Jesus came to earth to set those free who are enslaved under satan’s control (see Matthew 12:29, Mark 1:27, Luke 4:18).
Praise God! WE ARE GIVEN THE POWER IN THE HOLY GHOST TO CAST OUT DEVILS AFTER WE OURSELVES HAVE BEEN FREED. The binding of satan by Jesus shatters the power of satan’s realm and restores the power of God’s Kingdom here on earth (see II Corinthians 4:4).
The steps that we should take are these: 1) Recognize that our conflict is not with flesh and blood but against spiritual forces and powers of evil. “Last of all I want to remind you that your strength must come from the Lord’s mighty power within you. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand safe against all strategies and tricks of satan. For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood but against persons without bodies—the evil rulers of the unseen world, those mighty satanic beings and great evil princes of darkness who rule this world; and against huge numbers of wicked spirits in the spirit world. So use every piece of God’s armor to resist the enemy whenever he attacks, and when it is all over, you will still be standing up” (Ephesians 6:10-13, The Living Bible).
2) Live before God committed to His truth and righteousness (cf. Romans 12:1-2).
3) Have faith that satan’s powers can be broken and, in fact, already have been. “The time of judgment for the world has come—and the time when satan, the prince of this world, shall be cast out” (John 12:31, The Living Bible).
4) Realize that you, the believer, have powerful spiritual weapons given by God for the destruction of satan’s strongholds (see II Corinthians 10:4-5).
5) Proclaim the Gospel of the Kingdom and challenge satan and his power directly by believing in Jesus’ name (Acts 16:16).
6) Pray for and seek God’s Spirit for the gifts of tongues, prophecy, healing, miracles and signs and wonders (see Acts 4:29-33 and I Corinthians 14:1).
You in the prisons and all believers should know the power of God given to us through Jesus Christ. And the best way to avoid satan and his evil intentions is to be fully occupied in doing good and staying in God’s Word.
It is no use traveling fast if we are not on the right road. Our Christian walk is walked by faith, by what we should or should not do. Faith in Christ is the only condition for salvation, and as we stand by faith, we are the children of God by faith: that is, not just by believing but by doing (a living faith that shows itself true). “So, you see, a man is saved by what he does, as well as by what he believes ... so faith is dead if it is not the kind that results in good deeds” (James 2:24-26, The Living Bible).
The victory over satan and yourself and the world is our faith, so hold fast to it.
Please be sure to write for our booklets on spiritual warfare. They are FREE for the asking. Remember, this is the way that the devil and demons work with us: they entice us, they suggest rebellion and evil thoughts and they even encourage us to end it all and commit suicide. The devil does all these things through our imaginations, through our minds and our hearts, until we just get worn out trying to fight it all. Take heart, because God has sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to help you fight back through the power of His shed blood and His Holy Spirit! If you would like to communicate more on some of these things just mentioned, please contact us. We would like to help. Amen.
—Captain Kindness River
[Study material for this article has been adapted from its original sources.]
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