Grace Bible Church
Tree of Life
A Weekly Review
Week ending 041413
Similarities of being a soldier and the Art of War, Part 8.

EPH 6:10 begins the subject of divine power for the plan of God that God has ordained for the Christian soldier to live in. This is what we call the ability to handle spiritual warfare. This is the subject of EPH 6:10. We all need divine integrity if we are ever going to be victorious in spiritual warfare.

So far we have the phrase EPH 6:10, Finally, be strong in the Lord,

The word finally is actually the translation of two words, tou loipou which should be translated from now on. Ever since EPH 5:22, Paul has taught them the principles behind relationships such as marriage, family, parents, children, management, labor, friendship, and being members of the Church-age. Being members of the Church-age is in view in EPH 5:18, And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord;

Friendship, EPH 5:21, and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.

Marriage is in view in EPH 5:22, Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.  

EPH 5:25, Husbands, love your wives,

Family is taught in EPH 6:1-2, Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother (which is the first commandment with a promise),

Then Parents in EPH 6:4, And, fathers, do not provoke your children to anger; but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

Children are taught in EPH 6:1-3, Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother (which is the first commandment with a promise), that it may be well with you, and that you may live long on the earth.

Then there’s Labor, EPH 6:5, Slaves, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in the sincerity of your heart, as to Christ;

Then there’s Management – EPH 6:9, And, masters, do the same things to them, and give up threatening, knowing that both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with Him.

And so after studying these principles and noting these things, Paul is saying toi loupou, or from now on.

EPH 6:10 finally or from now on, be strong in the Lord,

So we now come to a position where we are ready to put on that armor, not just to handle marriage, family, and the work place, but also to recognize spiritual warfare. So we have a choice, what pattern do we follow? Most believers are  following the devil’s pattern, following it perfectly.

A known military expression that has come down for many, many generations in the United States military is “know your enemy.” One of the greatest problems today in both the natural realm and the spiritual realm is, that we do not know our enemy. Whether we are talking about the kingdom of darkness or the natural world. We do not really know our enemy. The majority of Christians think that they do, but they do not.

1JO 5:19, We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.

Now, I would like to begin with a passage that teaches what Satan and the kingdom of darkness specializes in.

EPH 6:12, Because our struggle is not against blood [people’s souls] and flesh [their old sin nature], but against the rulers [these are the archons like Abaddon and Beelzebub], against the powers [demon officers who have phenomenal authority], against the world forces of this darkness [kosmokratoras meaning demons who specialize in possessing or influencing the cosmos or world rulers] against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places or against the spiritual forces of evil in the atmosphere around the earth, the stellar universe and in the presence of God.

Whether we are talking about our spiritual enemy, or our natural enemy, it’s always good to know whom your enemies are. After all the Bible says, “Love your enemies,” therefore, how do you do know what enemies to love unless you know who your enemies really are, LUK 6:27, “But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you.” This is something where people do not know who their enemies are, but the Lord helps us with that.

In fact, our Lord said that some of your worst enemies are going to be members of your own family.

MAT 10:34-36, “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter‑in‑law against her mother‑in‑law; and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household.”

You don’t look upon the members of your family as your enemies and yet if they are antagonistic toward doctrine, or apathetic and not interested, that’s about what it amounts to. If someone that you love is taking you away from the word of God then the Bible says that they are your enemies even though you don’t think they are. So you can believe the Bible, or believe yourself.

When it comes to the pattern that Satan promotes, the problem many have is that Satan succeeds in wearing out and deceiving the saints of God. We are told that he will do that during the Tribulation period in DAN 7:25, “And he will speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One.”

Now, the original Aramaic tells us that this is a very slow process. He does not do it all at once. He does it gradually, invisibly, but continually. Little by little the saints are worn down. The verb to wear down is the Aramaic word bela’ meaning that it is a very slow process, he does not do it all at once, he does it gradually, invisibly but continually, little by little the saints are worn down. Maybe he’ll use someone of the opposite sex as he did against Samson in JUD 16:16.

Delilah wore down Samson continually. He wears down their physical body. He wears down their emotions. He wears down their heart. If we could see in the invisible realm, we would be shocked at the satanic plot to cause Christians not to concentrate on the things of God but to set their minds on the things of the world.

MAT 13:22, “And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns, this is the man who hears the word, and the worry of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.”

ROM 12:2, And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,

COL 3:2, Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.\

1JO 2:15, Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

Now, one of the definitions of the word translated devil, which is diaboloi, meaning to rip apart and that psychologically is what Satan tries to do as he tries to tear apart the mind. Satan desires to do at least three things to the mind and the emotions and the physical bodies of men and women.

Satan creates discord, breaks up unity, destroys patterns. Satan tears the mind apart, destroys the emotions, attacks the body and brings in false concepts as truth.  They become in bondage to their freedom.

GAL 5:1, It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.

GAL 5:13-14, For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

Satan works at attacking and wearing out believers. And remember he does it gradually and slowly. In fact, his wearing out tactics are not even noticeable. He wears out the saints little by little, so that it is even hard to spot. You may think it’s something very insignificant. Nevertheless, Satan knows the value of small things.

 

Satan wears out the body of the saints through mental pressure, emotions, diet, lack of exercise, eat less, sleep less and then multiply pressure. This is why we have the warning in 1PE 5:6-9.

1PE 5:6-10, Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.

He puts pressure on the believer’s heart. People begin to feel restless, unhappy, depressed, their joy is gone. This is because he wears out their spiritual life. In fact, the cosmic system is organized to teach us to trust God, less and less, and self, more and more.

ROM 1:25, For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

Notice that they worshipped the creature rather than the Creator. You’ll end up relying on your own ability and talent. Our angelic enemies use the things of the world to lure God’s people away from the plan of God. By holding out bait, angelic enemies keep believers on the march in the cosmic system; then at the proper time, lie in wait to ultimately deceive them.

Remember 1PE 5:8…your enemy the Devil, prowls about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.

Very few believers recognize that the details of life or the everyday affairs of this life are the situations used by our angelic enemies as their plans laid out for victory. The majority does not comprehend this.

Although everyone can see the outward aspects, very few understand what is really going on in the cosmic system.

Why do you think Paul said in 2TI 2:4  No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier.
It doesn’t say they are to be hermits and not live in the affairs of everyday life. It says that they do not entangle themselves in the affairs of everyday life. By holding out bait and so-called advantages to the believer, our angelic enemies can cause the believer not only to live in the ways of the world or the cosmic system, but to be in bondage to it.

2TI 2:24-26, And the Lord’s bond‑servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will.

By bringing in situations of pressure and suffering and inflicting damage, angelic enemies can make it possible for the believers to draw near to them rather than draw near to God.

JAM 4:7-8, Submit therefore to God [live in the PPOG]. Resist the devil [cosmic system] and he will flee from you. Draw near to God [life in the PPOG] and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands [confess your sins], you sinners; and purify your hearts [right lobes], you double‑minded.

It says, purify your hearts, or your right lobe.

Being double-minded means to have some true doctrine while in the PPOG plus having some doctrine of demons also stored in the right lobe; therefore, there is conflict. Purifying the right lobe is only possible through consistent, daily perception of Bible doctrine. Do not swallow bait offered by the enemy.

This is why you should know your enemy and analyze the enemy’s plans so that you will know their shortcomings as strong points for yourself. Because our angelic enemies also have shortcomings and weakness.

Their weakness toward us is always is based upon our strength in the Lord jesus Christ. They know that and that is why they try to separate us from operating in the power of God.

If we are strong and secure in certain areas, our angelic enemies are prepared for that.

If we are strong in some area, they will evade us in that area.

If we have a quick temper, they will produce situations to irritate us.

They will bring in situations of success and victory so that we may become arrogant.

Why?

PRO 11:2, When pride comes, then comes dishonor, But with the humble is wisdom.

PRO 16:18, Pride {goes} before destruction, And a haughty spirit before stumbling.

So, our angelic enemies also have shortcomings and weaknesses. Their weakness toward us is always based upon our strength in the Lord Jesus Christ. They know that and that is why they try to separate us from operating in the power of God. If we are strong and secure in certain areas, our angelic enemies are prepared for that.

If we are strong in some area, they will evade us in that area. If we have a quick temper, they will produce situations to irritate us. They will even bring in situations of success and victory so that we may become arrogant. If we are at ease, they will do their best to give us no rest. If we are united, they will try to separate us.

They will attack us where we are unprepared, and they will emerge when we don’t expect them to.

One of the best passages to caution us in this realm is one we have already translated from the original language.

PHI 2:1-5, Since therefore there is encouragement in Christ, since there is comfort from virtue-love, since there is fellowship of the Spirit, since there is tendernesses and compassions, Bring to completion my inner happiness [in your life] by thinking the same things, maintaining the same virtue-love, united in soul, concentrating on the same objective. Do nothing motivated by contentiousness or ambitious pride, but with humility of mind [by means of grace orientation] let each of you keep on considering one another as more important than himself; do not merely be regarding your own personal interests, but also for the personal interests of others. Keep on thinking this [doctrine]within yourselves which was also resident in Christ Jesus,

Generally, in the natural realm, the rule of thumb is that the best policy is to take the enemy intact; to destroy it is inferior to this. To capture the enemy’s entire army is better than to destroy it; to take intact a regiment, a company, or a squad is better than to destroy them. Satan and his kingdom of darkness love to capture an entire army in the spiritual realm. In other words, don’t destroy the church, just take the local assembly captive.

How?

Bring in the dog and pony show. Bring in the fundraisers. Bring in legalism and get them involved in politics and cleaning up the world, etc. Bring in the gimmicks and the sideshow. Have them meet together for fellowship rather than to learn the word of God. Bring in familiarity.

To win a hundred victories in a hundred battles is not the ultimate of skill. To subdue and capture the enemy without fighting is the supreme victory and the ultimate of skill. That is why many of those skilled in war can subdue the enemy’s army without even fighting. They capture the enemy’s cities without assaulting them and overthrow them without prolonged operations.

Their aim is to take captive as much as they can by their strategic plans. This is the art of offensive strategy.

Therefore, there are some principles concerning our angelic enemies.

  1. We must know when to fight and when not to, meaning when to be on the offensive and when to be on the defensive, EPH 6:11-13. Never rebuke Satan and the kingdom of darkness, resist Satan and the kingdom of darkness.
  2. We must know our real enemy, EPH 6:12, and understand how they war against our soul and how we are to stand against them. This means to hold your ground. I think I’ll repeat.

EPH 6:11, Hold your ground against the strategies of the devil.

EPH 6:13, Hold your ground in the day that evil attacks you.

JAM 4:7, Submit therefore to God [execute the pre-designed plan of God]. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

1PE 5:9, But resist the devil by being firm in your doctrine.

  1. We must know the value of unity and oneness because the one whose ranks are united in purpose will be victorious.

EPH 4:2-3, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing forbearance to one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

  1. We must know the importance of discipline and preparation because only those who are alert and prepared will be victorious.

Paul warned the pastors at the pastors conference in Ephesus to be alert as shepherds over sheep in ACT 20:31.

ACT 20:31, Therefore be on the alert, remembering that night and day for a period of three years I did not cease to admonish each one with tears.

Therefore, know your enemy and know yourself. If you know your enemy and know yourself, your chances of being victorious are good. If you are ignorant both of your enemy and of yourself, you are sure to be defeated in every battle. This is why you should know your enemy. You should examine and investigate the enemy’s plans so that you will know their shortcomings and weakness as your strong points. Think about it, our angelic enemies have been tempting members of the human race for over 6,000 years.

When it comes to warfare, they master in the art of subtlety and secrecy. Think about it, our real enemy is invisible and inaudible. The areas of our life that they intend to attack, they do not want us to know about.

A clever general avoids an army when its spirit is sharp, but attacks it when it is sluggish and divided. This is the art of studying moods. No one is a greater master at studying moods than Satan.

He is disciplined and calm, and awaits the appearance of disorder and confusion before his attack. However, we are protected from deception by Bible doctrine or the mind of Christ only. The only hope for protection against deception is doctrine resident in the soul. Paul said this in EPH 4:14, We are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves, and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming;  

Peter said this in 2PE 3:17, You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard lest, being carried away by the deception of unprincipled men [men with no principles], you fall from your own steadfastness,

Only the truth can keep false thinking and false doctrine out of the soul. Demons are called the Enemies of God, 1CO 15:25;HEB 10:13. Demons are a category of fallen angels operating under the command of Satan today. Operating under Satan’s discipline, they are the enemies of God 1CO 15:25.  Or in HEB 10:13 which says, He sat down on the right hand of God, from that time on, waiting until His enemies, [and in this context the enemies are the fallen angels] have been allotted the footstool of His feet.  

Our Lord said to the religious crowd who were not born again but religious, JOH 8:44, You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own {nature;} for he is a liar, and the father of lies.

Our Lord said in MAT 13:38  that the unbelievers are the children of the evil one; Our Lord said in JOH 6:70 that Judas Iscariot was of the devil. Paul said that unbelievers were children of the devil in ACT 13:10, not me! So, if you find these principles offensive, remember they did not come from me. This is a very serious point in light of the fact that Both Categories of Enemies of God, the Fallen Angels and Unbelievers, will Be Judged in the Lake of Fire. If you believe the Bible than you have to believe what the Bible says about eternity.

REV 20:10-15, And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever. And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead which were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds. And death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

Now, the unbeliever is like the fallen angel, in that the fallen angel has made his decision in some angelic history of the past, and he has been consigned to the lake of fire even though he is not there as of yet. The sentence has not been executed even though it has been given says MAT 25:41, the eternal fire has been prepared for the devil and his angels; But the sentence has not been executed, and will not be executed until the end of human history, after the Millennium, REV 20:10.

However, and this is a sad principle, but this place that many call Hell, had to be enlarged to make room for members of the human race who remained enemies of God, ISA 5:14. So, the fallen angels represent a category of creatures that had the chance over a long period of time to make a decision and did not do so and therefore they are Satan’s servants during this part of the angelic conflict.

Now, many subjects that are not directly addressed in the word of God can be theorized as to the truth behind the subject if you fall back on the character and nature of God. For example, one question that a lot of individuals have who understand some of the principles behind the angelic conflict is Did one third of the angels fall or did they all fall and two-thirds came back to Christ? Because remember the elect angels are said to be elect or chosen. For example, in 1TI 5:21, I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His chosen angels, to maintain these principles without bias, doing nothing in a spirit of partiality.

The question you should have is what were the angel’s chosen to? Even though the information we have on the prehistoric past is very vague, there are certain passages and principles of doctrine that give us insight into what may have transpired in eternity past. Now, when God created the universe, He formed a race of super-creatures, classified in the Bible as angels. Angels are rational be­ings with the ability to travel throughout the vast universe God created for them. And God made them perfect, without sin, acceptable to His absolute righteousness. And because volition is a necessary component of a rational mentality and of capacity for love, God gave the angels free will so that they might under­stand His character and worship Him. Furthermore, God established a system of angelic authority and organiza­tion within which the angels lived and functioned.

He perfectly blended freedom, authority, and responsibility, creating a structured environment within, whereby each angel could express his own volition. Through his satanic and evil power, the devil holds believers captive by legalism, self-righteousness, arrogance, emotionalism, guilt, fear, condemnation, manipulation. And his will is the production of evil, human good and dead works in the cosmic system. Satan’s power is also revealed by his strategy against believers and the Church. Some of Satan’s strategies include:

Satanic strategy is to discredit the canon of scripture with emphasis on the mystery doctrine of the Church-age.

Satanic strategy is to discredit believers through involving them in the cosmic system and Christian degeneracy.

Scroll to Top