Our Winning Battle Plan
Over the last few weeks, we have been developing our battle plan by taking a closer look at the armor of God.
Let’s Make An Overview Journey
We began our journey by looking at a snare and seeing just how easy it is to convince us to make bad behavioral choices, in this case going from contentment to complaining.
Our Enemy Satan
Then we stopped and took a look at our enemy Satan and saw that he is real. That he was a created being who made his own choice to go against God (Isaiah 14; Ezekiel 28) and has been promoting that choice to all of us – even convincing Adam and Eve to accept it as the natural basis of human nature (Genesis 3).
Our Enemy Has Tactics
However, knowing our enemy by name is not enough. We need to understand the ways that he tries to trip us up.
Why, you ask?
Can you imagine a sports team, in today’s society, not watching videos of the other teams, as well as of themselves, to see what the strengths and weaknesses are. NO!
So why would we want to be ignorant about the devices that our enemy, Satan uses. The Bible actually tells us that we are to NOT BE IGNORANT of his devices – we can study the scriptures and learn all that we need to know to stand up against the enemy with God’s help. (2 Corinthians 2:11) . So to be like the winning teams – we stopped and looked at 11 of the tactics Satan uses. Pride, deception, confusion, strife and condemnation are possibly some of his top favorites.
Our Enemy Hates Us, What To Do?
Now that we know the enemy is real and that he hates us, the natural next step is to listen to God, and with His help develop our winning battle plan by putting on the whole armor of God – Each piece is vital and needed to help us guard our hearts (Proverbs 4:23) and our minds (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).
But who can put on the armor of God?
Only those whom the Father has called and drawn towards His Son (John 6:44), Jesus – and once drawn we realize our need for a Savior and to no longer live our lives on our own. This leads us to repentance, asking forgiveness for our sins and acceptance of Jesus as our personal Savior (Romans 10:13).
Not by Ourselves
Always remember: ON OUR OWN WE CANNOT DEFEAT OUR ENEMY. We are just pawns that he will use. For what purpose? To hurt God (because he is totally powerless against Him directly). (Matthew 6:13; James 4:7 and Ephesians 6:10-11).
We cannot defeat the enemy but Jesus can.
Jesus has overcome our enemy and provided the way for us to think and perform differently (Ephesians 4:7-10).
7 Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8 The one 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. 9 No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10 This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.
Something New To Consider
Consider James 2:19 – “You believe there is one God. Good! But the demons believe that, too, and they tremble with fear.”
We know why the demons believe – they have seen Jesus.
Why do they tremble?
Because they know their end is coming. They only have a limited time frame, in which, to influence us into making wrong choices.
Some Verses to Ponder
Luke 8:26-36 – … 28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell down before him. He said with a loud voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torture me!” 29 He said this because Jesus was commanding the evil spirit to come out of the man. Many times it had taken hold of him. Though he had been kept under guard and chained hand and foot, he had broken his chains and had been forced by the demon out into a lonely place. 30 Jesus asked him, “What is your name? ”He answered, “Legion,” because many demons were in him. 31 The demons begged Jesus not to send them into eternal darkness. 32 A large herd of pigs was feeding on a hill, and the demons begged Jesus to allow them to go into the pigs. So Jesus allowed them to do this. 33 When the demons came out of the man, they went into the pigs, and the herd ran down the hill into the lake and was drowned. 34 When the herdsmen saw what had happened, they ran away and told about this in the town and the countryside. 35 And people went to see what had happened. When they came to Jesus, they found the man sitting at Jesus’ feet, clothed and in his right mind, because the demons were gone. But the people were frightened. 36 The people who saw this happen told the others how Jesus had made the man well.
What Can We Learn?
.1. Notice that they know who they are talking to — “Jesus, Son of the Most High God”
.2. Notice that they know judgment is coming – “Did you come here to torture us before the right time?”
.3. Notice that they have to obey even if it includes making a scene – Jesus said to them, “Go!” So the demons left the men and went into the pigs. Then the whole herd rushed down the hill into the lake and were drowned.
We Cannot Do This Alone
Now we realize that we definitely need a winning battle plan.
What will it be?
The armor of God – Something we must receive from God and then PUT ON.
Do you have the armor of God on?
Why Wouldn’t You Put the Armor On?
The enemy roams around looking for whom he may devour – keep in mind that does not have to be you or me – we can be protected – “I receive the armor you have offered, God, and I will put it on so that, with Jesus, I can stand against the wiles of the devil.”
The Parts of The Armor We Have Looked At So Far
We learned that Jesus Himself is the Truth (John 14:6) and He can supply us with everything that we need to live this life properly. Whoever Jesus sets free is free indeed. (John 8:32, 36).
The breastplate of righteousness. We are the righteousness of God in Jesus Christ. This means that we have been chosen by the Father, repented of our sins and have asked for God’s forgiveness so we can be in relationship with Jesus. Remember, Jesus exchanged His Life (He never sinned therefore eternal life was His wages) for our death (we sin – the penalty for our sins is death – remember God said in Romans 3:23 that all of us have sinned). If we accept this exchange then we can indeed be seen by the Father as righteous.
While studying the breastplate, we stopped and looked at repentance. We wanted to see what it is all about. It is a change of mind that results in a change of action.
Why do we need it? Repentance is part of our spiritual warfare – it helps us to view sin the way God does and helps us to want it completely removed from our lives so the devil cannot get a foothold in our lives. (Ephesians 4:20-32)
Today, we learned that the demons know who Christ is and that they have to/and do submit to His authority.
They know that they have to do what Jesus says — Jesus said come out – and the demons came out. — How many times have we known, without a doubt, what Christ is asking us to do, and come up with excuses as to why we can’t or don’t want to do what He is asking? — For me, more times than I would like to admit. — Every time I read this section of scriptures I am thankful for repentance and God’s forgiveness. In fact, I am thankful that God takes these opportunities to help me deepen my relationship with Him, and reteaches me what is right and gives me His strength to do what is right.
Jesus is real, He is the truth, the way and the life and He is our difference maker. He is our Victory.
Our enemy is defeated.
Let’s take the time to get know Jesus even better than we have before and to learn to listen and do what He says.
Abba Father, You are too awesome for us to comprehend. However, we are so thankful that you see value in us – and that Your love for us is so great that nothing can separate us from it. Let Your love shine into us and through us so we can become more like You. Help us to always wear Your armor so we can enjoy the victory that Jesus has won for us. In Jesus’ name, amen.
REMEMBER – THE WAR IS WON – HOWEVER THE BATTLE IS STILL RAGING
GO WITH JESUS AND PUT ON THE WHOLE ARMOR OF GOD