2Understanding Spiritual Warfare As Children of God, We must Understand that our Heavenly Father is GOODHis chief Goal is to make us the BEST people we Can possibly beEverything He does as he deals with our Christian lives is to develop our potential to the greatest degree possible
3Understanding spiritual warfare As children of God, we must understand that Satan is totally EVILHis Job description is revealed in John 10:10“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy”
4Understanding spiritual warfare Attributes of GodSpirit Holy Eternal Infinite Everywhere at once All knowing All Might The Truth Just Righteous Life Unchangeable Sovereign Love Faithful Merciful CaringGod’s Attributes never get out of BALANCE with each otherHe NEVER acts out of CharacterFor this reason we can trust and have confidence in God’s judgment concerning our livesHe will ALWAYS do what is best for usHis love is so great – it is beyond understanding – and he is absolutely trustworthy
5Understanding spiritual warfare Attributes of Satan A Liar A Murderer A sower of conflict An Adversary Cunning Wicked Malignant – totally evil Cowardly Tempter A Thief No Principles Proud Deceitful cruel A destroyerThe Devil is NOT a negative God – he is a Fallen AngelAs a result, he is not more POWERFUL than GodSin always WEAKENS whatever it touchesBut it doesn’t nullify his power because the works of the Flesh are his area of experienceSome of the works of the devil are Sin, Sickness, Fear, Death, Depression, Murder, Temptation, deception, lust, and rebellion
6Understanding spiritual warfare Jesus came to destroy the works of the Flesh – 1 John 3:8“He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.”In Christ, we have VICTORY and POWER of the works of the Flesh – if we choose to USE that powerWe can trust that God will NEVER use the works of the flesh to deal with his ChildrenGod wouldn’t have sent Jesus to destroy the works of the evil only to use them on those whom he loves
7Trust god in spiritual warfare Many have unfairly attributed the devil’s acts to the works GodWhat can a person do if he believes it is God who sent the sickness into his life to teach him something?It is possible, that because we LACK the trust in God in spiritual warfare, we fall into the works of the Flesh… thus causing our current condition.
9Open doors in spiritual warfare Paul says something very important concerning spiritual warfare – Ephesians 4:27“Do not give the devil a open door/foothold”When we have “OPEN DOORS” in our spiritual lives, the Devil feels he has the right to take advantage of usIf we keep them closed, He can’t do what he wants to do
10Open doors in spiritual warfare Open Door principle introduced – Gen. 4:7“If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.”God told Cain sin was crouching at the door, waiting to leap into his life. Cain had the choice, but he chose to open the door to JEALOUSY, And Satan lead him to murderSin is PROGRESSIVE – One things leads to another until we find ourselves in big troubleFor this reason, we must keep the doors closed before they develop into something harmful
11What are open doors?Lineage – Inherited weaknesses from our family lineageEx: Our parents were Alcoholics… so we are sensitive to AlcoholCrisis – An emotional or Physical Crises can cause us to leave open doorsIgnorance – Ignorance of the word can leave Open doors that are DEVISTATINGPaul urged believers, “Not to be ignorant of the word,” six times!
12How to close open doors Put on your ARMOR – Ephesians 6:10-13 “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 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. 13 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”Recognize your enemy, put on the Armor, quit feeling sorry for yourself – WE UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN RIGHTEOUSNESS AND SIN!James 4:7 – Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come near to God and he will come near to you.2 Timothy 2:15 – Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.Hosea 4:6 - my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge
13Insert video – Spartans What is your profession?
15How to close open doors FAITH is the Key – Our Power source is faith in Christ that comes form the WordPutting on the Armor of God (Which is the word) – Ephesians 6:10-18Matthew 4:1-11 – Jesus resisted with the wordNot Just because he knew the word, but LIVED the wordEphesians 6:17 – the word is the Sword of the Spirit
16Our partGod doesn’t do Everything – He gives us the TOOLS – There is a part we must do – Romans 13:12-14“The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So LET US put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 LET US BEHAVE DECENTLY, as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Rather, CLOTHE YOURSELVES with the Lord Jesus Christ, and DO NOT THINK ABOUT how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature”Positive Action is required – So be determined to ACT!!!!
17Strong man is his name The Strong Man? - Luke 11:21-22 “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are safe. 22 But when someone stronger attacks and overpowers him, he takes away the armor in which the man trusted and divides up the spoils.”Jesus calls the demonic presence a “STRONG” man.
18Strong man is his nameWe have to take care of this problem “strong man”, or the problem will RETURN… and even worse. Luke 11:24-26“When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through different places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ 25 When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. 26 Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first.”
19Strong man is his nameAs we saw from the scriptures, it wasn’t enough just bind the strongman and cast him out with all of his belongingsFOLLOW-UP WORK is necessary. We must learn to maintain the freedom God has given to us, whether it is a case of harassment or possession
20Strong man is his nameSome people can get passed a certain point in their spiritual lives…or they begin to fall behind.Something seems to Kick their spiritual legs out from under them, and they land back at square one againAfter the house is cleared by obedience to the Gospel, we must then feed on the word so that the “house” is transformed into the temple of God
21Can Christian be possessed Don’t misunderstand, it’s not that demons are everywhere and in everybody… Not “everything” is caused by DemonsHere is the point - When an Evil influence is that is operating we can recognize it and deal with it according to scripture
22Can Christian be possessed Christians (true Christians with the H.S.) “CANNOT” be demon-possessed… but we certainly can be attacked in our minds, wills, emotions, and bodiesThese parts of the Christian body can be troubled, pressed, buffeted, harassed, depressed, obsessed, in bondage, and bruised.
23Can Christian be possessed The people who are in a state of “possession” have long severed their relationship with God – they may still hang onto a form of Godliness, but it’s only an empty shell camouflaging their true spiritual condition
24Can Christian be possessed Some scriptures to Consider –Matthew 6:24 – Luke 6:13James 3:11-121 Corinthians 3:16-171 Corinthians 10:211 Corinthians 6:191 John 4:41 Corinthians 2:121 John 5:18
25Concluding spiritual warfare We can’t make the mistake that the works of the Flesh can be attributed to Demon possession (the flesh has some strong ideas how it wants to live).If we don’t use the Power of the Holy Spirit to keep the “FLESH” subdued, it can raise HavocWe have to remain on the Altar of a Living sacrifice – Romans 12:1 – “Be A living SacrificeWe are free of possession and Slavery if we have Christ – John 8:36 “The Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”
26Concluding spiritual warfare PAUL didn’t beat around the bush, “Put on the whole armor of God, they ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the Devil” (Eph. 6:11)PETER said, “Be Sober, be vigilant; because you “ADVERSARY” the devil, was a roaring lion walks around, seeking whom he may devour: Resist him by standing strong in the faith” (1 Peter 5:8-9)JAMES said, “Resist the Devil, and he will flee form you” (James 4:7)
27Remember“For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. 5 We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ”2 Corinthians 10:3-5