The Apostle Paul used the Roman soldier and his armor to visually engrave in the minds of his readers principles of war—principles that hold not only in military battles but also in spiritual battles with the enemy. As a matter of fact, in his last letter to his beloved son in the faith, Paul admonished Timothy to “suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus.” Paul was adamant that Timothy not entangle himself in the affairs of this life, in order that he might please the One who had called him to be a soldier (2 Timothy 2:3-4).
My goal for you, Beloved (as Paul, Peter, and Jude call you in their epistles), is the same—to prepare you to be a good soldier for the Lord Jesus Christ. And in order to be a good soldier for Jesus Christ, you have to know the Word of God. That is why God raised up Precept Ministries International and has put us in nearly 150 countries in nearly 70 languages! We want to teach people how to discover Truth for themselves and thus establish them in His Word so that they can “be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58).
Now then, open your Bibles. Seeing Truth for yourself with your own eyes in your own Bible makes a difference. You might want to mark all references to the enemy or warfare with a red pitchfork. As you look up the following verses, I suggest you either highlight them or underline them in your Bible.
1. Where is the Christian’s warfare? Look up the following verses and record what
a. 1 Peter 5:8
b. Ephesians 6:11-12
2. Read 2 Corinthians 2:11 (NAS) and write out what God says with respect to the enemy.
One key element in warfare is intelligence—knowing what your enemy is doing or understanding what he intends to do. You need to know his forces, their capabilities, how they operate, and what their intentions are. You gather information about the enemy, you evaluate it, then you decide what is “true” or “most likely” and plan or operate accordingly.
Sometimes you don’t know much, so it’s hard to judge his intentions or likely moves. Sometimes you misjudge. You mistake one thing for another and don’t perceive his intentions. However, when you ignore clear signals or clear signs of the enemy’s plans or intentions, you leave yourself wide open to defeat. You might shut your eyes and pretend it’s not there or dismiss it as rumor, deciding it’s not true.
But if it is true, you cannot ignore the truth and expect to win. This is what is happening today. Collectively we are so woefully ignorant of the whole counsel of God, so wrapped up in life, fulfilling what we think we want, that we’ve missed the cross—death to self. Crucified with Christ—His life, not ours. And that is where our battles are won!
Think about it, Beloved. Talk to the Captain of the host.
This blog post is excerpted from the out-of-print 30-day devotional “How to Stand Firm Against the Five Deadly D’s” by Kay Arthur.