Yet, it's a command to obey. So, are you ready? This is the Chip Ingram paraphrase. Allow yourself to be continually strengthened by the power already available to you in your new position and relationship with Christ. And then, alluding to what power? The power that raised Christ from the dead, and now dwells in you. So, there's a command. You need to allow God to work in your life in such a way that the power that has been made available in your new relationship with Him gives you the strength to win this battle.
You're gonna find that you've already won the war.
Gaining Perspective on Territorial Spirits
Now, notice, the second command is how to do it. Well, how do you do that? It says, "Put on the full armor of God. That's God's provision so you can actively win this battle, because you've already won the war. And so, he says how to do this: You put on the full armor of God. That's verse It's by continually and repeatedly putting on, at specific points in time, the spiritual protection God has provided for you.
This verb is a little bit different one.
It's in a tense that means at a punctiliar, at a point in time. The other one was a command, but this one has the idea of a sense of urgency. At specific times, you need to be urgent, and ready. Put on the armor of God. So, he's saying, "Be strong in the Lord. How do you do it? By putting on the full armor of God. Where is the battle? There are — did you notice the little word schemes? Circle that word.
We get our English word strategies. There is an invisible, angelic being, who has a host of demons, that has specific strategies to take you out, to tempt you, to deceive you, to get you to believe lies, to get you to be drawn away from God, to get your heart filled with partial truths and untruths, to get you to try and go after a good thing in the wrong way, or the wrong time, or with the wrong person.
He's got schemes. Now, notice, why do we need to do this? The reason is verse He says, "For our struggle," and you might circle that word. It's not with people. It's not with another person. It's not with an organization. You get the idea? It is not with flesh and blood. The struggle, or the conflict, isn't a material issue, but it's an invisible war. And then, what he begins to list for you is a very clear hierarchy of demonic power. Now, you know what? They understood all about it.
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And he was just telling them some things that were realities in their life. Because, like us, what happens? We get thinking the problem is our mate. We get thinking the problem is our boss.
We get thinking the problem is one of our kids. We get thinking it's circumstances, and situations. And we don't understand, behind those things, there is an archenemy that wants to use those to destroy our lives. Now, we all make choices, and sometimes the consequences are, bad things happen to us. We don't blame that on demonic forces, or the enemy. Sometimes it's just a fallen world, and circumstances happen. Everything, again, is not because of demonic forces. The danger, as we approach this, is to think that everything has to do with Satan and demons, or that nothing has to do with Satan and demons.
Spiritual warfare: The battle in your mind
And so, with that, here's what I'd like to do. This is I wanna give you five basic truths that just flow right out of this passage, and that you can know, for sure, this is true about spiritual warfare. So, turn the page on your notes, and we'll dig in together. Five basic truths about spiritual warfare.
Now, empiricism, and scientific method — you know, we've got, now, a couple, three, four centuries since the Enlightenment, that we wanna explain everything, and test everything, and measure everything. What I want you to know: There is a world. There's a world that you can't see. It's invisible. But it's as real as touching your skin. It's as real as when you kiss one of your children on the cheek, and put them to bed. It's as real as when someone rear-ends you in your car, and you find yourself with lower back pain and back spasms.
It is as real as tasting, and touching, and watching a sunset. And we've got multiple examples. For centuries, people couldn't see bacteria, but was bacteria real? Viruses, are they real? Electricity — I can't see it, but it's doing some things, isn't it? Natural gas — I can't see it, but you know what? I've got a little thing in my house that if I light this, and turn a little switch over here — whew!
Carbon monoxide — I can't see it. I can't smell it. It is completely invisible. But if you stay in a room with enough of it, what will it do? It'll kill you. There's an invisible world. Let me give you an Old Testament example, and a New Testament example. Turn in your Bibles, if you would, to 2 Kings 6. And as you turn there, I'm gonna look at verses — pick it up at verse And this is the story of one of the great prophets Elisha, and as you turn there I'll give you a little background.
Elisha is making this king absolutely crazy, and he's doing a number of amazing things. He's God's man, and tremendous things are happening.
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