Spiritual Battle Skill – Know Your Enemy

You must have had this question cross your mind – ”Our Lord is a Sovereign God, so why has HE allowed our enemy, satan to live?”. The fact is that God can choose anytime to ‘take him out’, throw him into the lake of fire; God says HE is going to do that and will include all those whose names are not found in the book of life .In the logical world, the simple solution to any problem is to deal with it at the source, so if that’s the case, then why not take our enemy out yesterday so we are free today and no longer tempted to sin ? Only God knows the answer, for his way of managing good and evil is wiser than our understanding. Our Lord Adonai has ordained a long leash for satan to be able to roam all four corners of the earth [Revelation 20:7-15]. God knows as we walk in and out of temptations, struggles, troubles and pain as a result of spiritual and physical attacks by the enemy, more of HIS Glory will shine in that battle than if HE ‘took him out’. Our enemy is already a defeated foe- Jesus Christ [Yeshua], has given us the authority to overcome all the powers of the enemy [Luke 10: 19].

Before engaging in any warfare it is sensible to know your enemy, it’s capability and commander then you be able to prepare properly for battle. No Army runs blindly out onto a battlefield to fight not knowing what the conditions are. There is always a brief about the enemy or you wouldn’t know where to even begin the battle. The Bible tells us in I Peter 5:8 that, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour ”. Here the enemy is compared to a lion. A lion is proud and fears nothing, it goes where it pleases and looks for the weak to prey upon. Satan does the same thing. He is constantly looking for people who are weak in their spiritual life so he can tear them down. How is your charitable and prayer life? Leading a righteous life, loving God and following his commandments will make you untouchable. You become weak when you begin to live in sin; his ‘main meal’ :- these are the afflictions and setbacks we face in our life’s relating to spiritual life, finances, family, relationships and marriage, career, business etc. Where the enemy is not able to attack you directly – he attacks the weak people around you to distract you from your God given purpose; have no fear, endure and class this as ‘foolish things’ by the enemy even if is death (bereavement)- there is always injuries and fatalities in any battle. “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell ”[Matthew 10:28].

Our Commander in chief Yeshua has given us information about the enemy and described him as the father of lies and a murderer from the beginning  [John 8:43-44 ]. This is one way that he attacks and brings down believers. Jesus Christ called our enemy the “prince of this world”. So if we think of this; A prince is one with authority that others will obey and that he has control over; can influence nations- the enemy is able to use them for atrocities and genocides to kill and destroy – Nazi Germany, Yemeni Civil War, Sudanese Civil War, Syria just to name a few. The enemy is currently using big nations to turn against God’s commandments on the pretence of equality and human rights – changing and making new laws on marriage and sexuality. Yeshua himself acknowledges the enemy’s authority ordained for this world by God [John 12:31, 14:30 and 16:11]. However, when we are saved we are no longer “of this world” and as such are loosed from the enemy’s authority; HE that is in us is greater than that of this world [1 John 4:4]. If you continue to lie, deceive and manipulate people for your own gain, then you are an instrument of the enemy to use anytime he wants.

Our enemy is also referred to as the “prince of the air” so not only is he the prince of this world but also of the air [Ephesians 2:2]. This is a ruler with authority and power in heavenly places- and still has access to speak to God on the throne [Job 1:7]; This power is however limited, contained and restrained. The devil is not as many picture him with a pitchfork, horns and tail. He is nothing of this nature. He was the most beautiful of angels with shining splendor and pride entered into him [Ezekiel 28:7]. You may be thinking why should this happen? God gave us the power of free will. God did not make him an ugly disgusting creature because everything God creates – HE does it to HIS perfection. Our enemy rebelled against God and deceived 1/3 of angels to follow him -he was defeated in battle and locked up for a period; now roaming about on earth after being thrown out of heaven with his followers [Isaiah 14:12]. His Army is very organised as a result. Those in the heavens and dwell in them rejoiced! But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil is now here with us! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short”[Revelation 12:7-12]. Just like a president gets blamed for everything bad and praised for everything good though not directly involved – that’s the same attributes to our enemy – his army are out there causing destruction and following commands. Keep this truth in mind: the enemy comes to kill, steal, and destroy [John 1:10]. Every demon has the same mission. How they go about it – their strategies and tactics -are different.

The enemy can not control or force you to sin because if you submit yourselves to God, you able to resist the devil, and he will flee from you [James 4:7]. Resist him, standing firm in the faith. Do so in the knowledge that your fellow believers are enduring the same suffering throughout the world [1 Peter 5:9]. No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be loyal to the one and have contempt for the other. You cannot serve God and money [Matthew 6:24]. The enemy uses this same world to recruit and attack believers. Is money controlling you or you have dominion over money? Everything God created has a name and a Purpose ; our enemy was called Lucifer which means “bearer of light” or “morning star,” refers to his former splendor as the greatest of the angels [Isaiah 14:12], then it all changed when he rebelled against God to ‘father of lies’ ; satan meaning “accuser” or “adversary” and other names relating to his evil deeds. The way you call yourself -the meaning of your name may all be what has connected you to the enemy with all the afflictions and setbacks in life. We innocent yet our names may be cursed as a result of our ancestors.

The enemy can not tempt without God’s permission and has good knowledge of the scriptures. Jesus Christ however recognized this for what it was and rebuked satan, not once but 3 times; satan had even taken scripture out of context but was defeated with the word of God [Matthew 4:1-11]. No temptation has seized you that isn’t common for people, but God is faithful. He won’t allow you to be tempted beyond your abilities. Instead, with the temptation, God will also supply a way out so that you will be able to endure it [1 Corinthians 10:13]. Begin to defeat all your temptations with the word of God. Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one [James 1:13]. Watch your tongue for our words can be destructive and the enemy is able to connect and attack us through it [Proverbs 18:21]. With his trained Army they are able to blind the minds of people who are not believers so they do not come to know the gospel of Jesus Christ [ 2 Corinthians 4:4].

The enemy can not read your mind but because of the number of years in existence and the vast knowledge about mankind is able to predict our behaviour. Only God knows [1 Kings 8:39]; Our commander in chief Yeshua knows our hearts and minds [John 2:25, Matthew 9:4, John 6:64]. The enemy however, can send you evil thoughts and ideas [Acts 5:3]. The enemy can control the unsaved and make them do his will. Our enemy doesn’t know the future either and have no control over it except God. If he knew the future – he wouldn’t have gotten the Son of Man crucified [Isaiah 46:9-10]. The enemy can not overcome you if you trust in God ; The enemy can not separate us from God if we accept Yeshua as our saviour [Romans 8:37-39]. God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him won’t perish but will have eternal life. God didn’t send his Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through him [John 3:16-17].

The enemy can not inflict pain or suffering without God’s permission- if you remember the story of Job , Satan has to be given permission and limitation [Job 1:12]. All the problems you face right now , God works out everything for good and in absolute control. Everything bad that happens to us is filtered by God. God allowed Joseph to be sold as a slave by his own brothers only to end up becoming the minister of Egypt [Genesis 37, 41]; if people have been used by satan to inflict pain and suffering on you, remember Joseph and fear not, though evil has been plotted against you; God allowed it for good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save you and draw you inline with your destiny [Genesis 50:19-20]. The enemy is able to harass when allowed by God, physically and spiritually like in the story of King Saul [1 Samuel 16:14-16] and Apostle Paul having a thorn in his flesh , but God’s grace will always be sufficient for us through all our troubles and His power made perfect in our weaknesses [2 Corinthians 12:7-10].

The enemy can use all sorts of mediums such as people, animals, objects and places to attack- Our enemy attacks all the time non-stop like a powerful force of attackers that goes forth like locusts to torment mankind and destroy [Revelation 9]. Apostle Paul has warned about being deceived by Satan, “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers. Transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ and no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers or righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works [2 Corinthians 11:13-15]. ”Paul is warning of people who appear to be something they are not. Not all followers of Satan are obvious; many are standing in pulpits in Christian churches today even preaching the gospel of salvation. Here we see infiltration going on by the enemy. We should be on our guard against these people- for they will come to us in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves ;we will however, know those sent by our Lord God by their fruits [Matthew 7:15-20]. Our commander in chief Jesus Christ has also warned us that, our worst enemies will be the people closest to us – family used as instruments by the enemy [Matthew 10:36].

What are the people around you influencing in your life? Is it for your salvation or destruction? Good old story of Samson and Delilah says it all [Judges 16]. Consider the places you go and ask a simple question – will Jesus Christ follow me here? Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? [2 Corinthians 6:14]. The ‘new order of this world’ controlled by the enemy are lifestyles and different sexuality against God’s plan. Whenever a rainbow appears in the sky, it is God’s promise to us and to all other living creatures that, never again will floodwaters destroy all life as a result of our grievous sins- if you have ears listen [Genesis 9:8-16]. When it comes to objects – we all remember the mediums God used, ‘the staff of Moses” to show his power and glory- delivered the Israelite’s from Egypt [Exodus 4:17 ]. The hem of Jesus Christ healing the woman with the issue of bleeding [Mark 5:25-28]. The power of anointing oil can break the yoke of afflictions. [James 5:14-16]. Our enemy uses various mediums to attack also. Have you been somewhere and been given any object to carry out anything ungodly in search of solution to your afflictions? Apostle Paul burned sorcery books as a result of it’s evil powers [Acts 19:19]. When it comes to animals, Jesus Christ [Yeshua] cast out demons and they begged Him to enter pigs [Mark 5:1–21]. God used a donkey to speak [Numbers 22:28]; God also used ravens to feed His prophet Elijah [1 Kings 17:2-7]. Pray for your animals and pets so they are not used as a medium by the enemy.

We are fighting a battle we have already won. God sent HIS son Jesus Christ right into the middle of this warfare. It was the enemy that put into the heart of Judas to betray Him. Yeshua our Lord God exposed himself to the enemy- the father of lies, deceit and his murderous plans; but HE endured suffering and died on the cross to make a public display of the defeat of principalities and powers in the heavenly places [Colossians 2:15]. There’s more Glory to Yeshua defeating the enemy through suffering than just taking ‘him out’, [ John 12:23 ]. There’s is even more Glory to look up to Jesus Christ in-spite of our struggles than having our troubles completely removed and loving Yeshua because of it [1 Peter 4:13]. We will share in the Glory of our Lord Jesus Christ, that’s why we are called to follow Him [2 Thessalonians 2:14].

We have seen how our enemy really is as a commander and how his Army operates. It takes careful preparation before a battle and that includes knowing your enemies strengths and weaknesses. Eventually every destructive thing Satan has tried to achieve throughout history will be reversed and defeated, and all that God has set out to achieve will be accomplished. This is made clear in the Scriptures. And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true” [Revelation 21:5]. God has ultimate control over His creation, and Satan can do no more than allowed in our lives.

Prayer

Oh Holy Spirit , open my heart and mind not to be ignorant of the enemy devices so not to have an advantage over me in my battles, In Jesus Christ name, Amen

Further Reading

2 Corinthians 2:11 Matthew 24:30 Revelation 20:7-10 2 Corinthians 6:14-16 1 Timothy 5:22 2 John 1:1 Ephesians 5:11 1 Corinthians 5:10 Ephesians 5:7 Matthew 6:23 Hebrews 2:14 1 John 5:18 Deuteronomy 30:19 Isaiah 65:17 1 Thessalonians 4:16