An Adversarial Environment
Each morning when we wake up, we are faced with an adversarial environment. Daily we must choose whom we will serve (Jos. 24:15). For the believer in Yeshua, who has been given the privilege of entering the Kingdom of God, there is also an opposing Kingdom called "The Kingdom of this World. "The Kingdom of this World" is ruled by principalities, powers, rulers of darkness and spiritual wickedness in HIGH places" (Ephesians 6:12).
Today, because many of you are facing some fierce opposition, you must know who the real enemy is and know his nature. Our real enemy is the devil. We are instructed by Peter to be sober and vigilant, because the adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, is walking about seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8).
The enemy comes to destroy our hope and paralyze us, keeping us from moving forward. One of his favorite weapons to keep us from our destiny is distraction. I once heard it said, that broken focus is the goal of all satanic attacks. The Good News today is that we have all the tools necessary to overcome our opponent. Our battle is an invisible battle, therefore we must become experts in spiritual warfare knowing how to use all the weapons given to us by God. We must never try to operate undressed (unprepared) for battle.
There are six pieces of armor described in Eph. 6:14-18. I would like to focus on the one piece called the "helmet of salvation" (Eph. 6:17). A helmet is designed to protect your head from bombardment. If you can picture a Roman soldier wearing a helmet, you can also picture the Jewish High Priest's turban, representing atonement for haughtiness. The enemy's greatest strategy is to attack your mind. He is not afraid of us, nor is he afraid of our words. He is afraid of God and of God's Word. When we endeavor to think for ourselves, apart from the scripture of God, we are actually powerless and open to operating in sensual and devilish wisdom.
In order to be effective against the enemy, we need to seek and obey the Holy Spirit and let Him reveal to us what is in our hearts/mindset. Are you envious of anyone? Is there strife in your heart? Where envying and strife is there is confusion and every evil work. Are you confused today? If so, know that confusion is the fruit of earthly, sensual, devilish wisdom (James 3:14-16).
We must know the Word of God. (Heb. 4:12) Every attack from the enemy can be overcome by believing and speaking God's Word. I have had personal seasons of warfare end quickly because I spoke God's Word of life and not fleshly words of death. Our future begins today by our speaking life over our situations (Prov. 18:21).
I Sam. Chapter 7 is a very encouraging story about warfare, vision, and victory. The Ark of the LORD remained in a place called Kiriath-Jearim for twenty years. Being separated from the Ark, the Israelites felt as though God had abandoned them.
Some of you right now feel like you have been abandoned and the battle is now too fierce to endure. The Prophet/Judge Samuel rose up and told the Children of Israel to clean house. He said: "If you are truly serious about coming back to God, clean house. Get rid of the foreign gods and fertility goddesses, ground yourselves firmly in God, worship him and him alone, and he'll save YOU from Philistine oppression" (MSG). Oppression is one of the enemy's war tools against the believer's mind. The children of Israel were afraid because they were (unprepared) for battle, yet they believed Samuel and did what he said.
Our foreign gods and goddesses act as faulty filters, causing faulty mindsets and keeping us from a proper knowledge of God's Word. Samuel summoned the people to a place called Mizpeh. 1 Samuel 7:5 "Gather all Israel to Mizpeh." Mizpeh in it's Hebrew roots means, "a watchtower", and "to peer into the distance." I see this distant place as the place of vision and instruction for victory over the enemy. Proverbs 29:18 states "Where there is no vision, the people perish: BUT he that keeps the law (instruction) happy is he." Over the years, I have noticed that people often don't quote the second half of that verse. Be encouraged today, that if you guard the instruction (Word) of God, your life will straighten out. If you understand the words of God, you will receive vision/revelation and warfare strategy.
As Samuel offered a burnt offering on behalf of the people at Mizpeh, God thundered with a great thunder upon the Philistines and they were smitten before Israel (I Sam. 7:10). Obedience and speaking God's Word creates a sound/a mighty thunder that causes the enemy to FLEE. I Sam. 7:12 "Then Samuel took a stone and set it between Mizpeh and Shen and called the name of it Eben-ezer" (The Stone of Help). And the hand of the LORD was against the Philistines all the days of Samuel. Let this reformation story encourage you - warfare, vision, and victory.
God is for YOU. He knows you cannot win any devilish battle by your own wisdom, but you can by His Spirit (Zec. 4:6) and by His word. Matt. 4:10 "Then said Jesus unto him, GO, SATAN: FOR IT IS WRITTEN." I speak life over all of you who read this letter. Know, you are WELL able to overcome and possess the land (Num. 13:30).
Blessings and honor,