(2 Corinthians 10:3-6, Ephesians 6:10-12)
From 1 July until 9 August, we are in the season called 40.Day 2023, a time of focused prayer for Singapore and the church. The goal is to see a revival in the body of Christ and to reignite believers with God’s purpose for the nation. The high point of the season will be a gathering of believers at seven designated locations across the island to pray and praise with thanksgiving to God for His blessings.
As we enter this significant spiritual momentum, we must be aware that we will face opposition. This opposition is known as spiritual warfare, and it is not physical in nature. We must use spiritual weapons to fight this battle, not physical ones.
The Description of Our Warfare
Christians, knowingly or unknowingly, are enlisted in a spiritual battle the moment we surrender to Jesus Christ and receive Him as our Lord and personal Savior. This battle will continue until we are called home to glory. (Colossians 1:13)
The Bible compares Christians to soldiers, and for good reason. Just as soldiers must be prepared for battle, so too must Christians be prepared for the spiritual battle that we are all engaged in. This spiritual battle has been described as wrestling against the wiles of the enemy. It’s not a physical battle, but it’s just as real. We are constantly being bombarded with temptation and deception, and we must be vigilant in our fight against the kingdom of darkness. (Eph 6:10-12)
The enemy, Satan, is always lurking in the shadows, waiting for an opportunity to attack. That’s why it’s so important for us to be constantly in training and preparation for battle. We must be familiar with the enemy’s tactics, and we must be armed with the truth of God’s Word.
The Distinction of Our Weapons
Worldly weapons of aggression and violence are useless against the spiritual forces of evil. The only weapons that are effective in destroying the fortresses of Satan, unrighteousness, and false teachings are those that are given to us by God.
It is very important that we are prepared through our relationship with Jesus and living in righteousness, detesting the sinful nature so we can effectively operate the weapons of warfare. As Christians, we should know that we are not fighting for victory, but we are fighting from victory. Jesus has given us the victory over all powers of darkness, we only need to possess it and operate in it.
Winning in Christian warfare involves:
- Pulling down all strongholds. This means identifying and dismantling the lies, deceptions, and false beliefs that the enemy has planted in our minds. We do this by using the Word of God as a sword to cut through the enemy’s lies and by filling our minds with the truth of God’s Word. (1 Tim 4:1-4)
- Casting down imaginations. The Devil brings a lot of evil imaginations to our mind to challenge our faith and trust in God. We must resist the enemy by our shield of faith.
- Bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. This means taking control of our thoughts and making sure that they are in line with God’s will. We are encouraged to fill our hearts with pure, godly and righteous thoughts and to set our mind and heart on things in heaven. (Philippians 3:19, 4:8; Colossians 3: 1-3).
Putting on the whole armour of God
We must put on the whole armour of God, not just part of it. If we only put on part of the armour, we will be vulnerable to attack on the unprotected parts. The whole armour of God is described in Eph 6:11-19.
Prayer and intercession are among the key weapons that we can use in winning over all challenges. When we pray and intercede, we are asking God to intervene in the battle and to help us to defeat the enemy.
- We are always in a battle with the kingdom of darkness. This battle is spiritual, and it is not always visible to us. However, it is real, and it is important that we are aware of it.
- Carnal weapons are inadequate and irrelevant in fighting this spiritual battle. We need to use the spiritual weapons that God has given us.
- It is our responsibility to ensure that we are always battle-ready.
The 40-day spiritual exercise will come and go, but the life of every believer will remain. We can use the spiritual weapons that we have gained during the exercise to stand in the gap for others and to exalt God’s name. When we pray and intercede for others, we are asking God to intervene in their lives and to bring about His will. We are also lifting God’s name and declaring His greatness.
May God add to the harvest in His kingdom as we stand in the gap with our hands lifted high to exalt His name. Together, we can make a difference in the world and bring glory to God’s name.
Rev Anthony Loh