Spiritual warfare is a real thing. It’s a battle that we will be fighting for the rest of our lives. Some seasons may be more difficult than others, but the enemy will not rest when he is up against a Jesus follower. In all actuality, Satan doesn’t really care about the unbelievers. They are already on his “team,” so what does he have to worry about? His main priority is to attack and destroy the ones who have chosen Jesus. He wants to get under our skin, cause us to doubt, and lure us in the opposite direction of God. And he’ll pull out all the stops to do so.
We are commanded so many times in Scripture to resist the devil. 1 Peter 5:8-9 says, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith.” In Ephesians 6, Paul commands us to put on the armor of God as a way to “stand against the schemes of the devil.” James 4:7 tells us to submit ourselves to God and resist the enemy. There is clear warning that we will face opposition from Satan. This should not come as a surprise, and yet I feel like so many Christians believe that when you say “yes” to Jesus, you shouldn’t face trials. But it’s quite the opposite: when you say “yes” to doing life with Jesus, you are signing up for battle. You become a target for the enemy.
Thankfully, we do not have to fight the battle alone. God promises to be by our side; He will never leave us. He has given us tools that equip us to fight back against the devil’s attacks. When Paul tells us to put on the full armor of God in Ephesians, He also gives detailed descriptions of what each piece of armor is and how to use it. We are to dress ourselves each day in truth, righteousness, readiness, faith, salvation, and the Spirit. These are the weapons we fight back with. Friend, this is why it is necessary to get in the Word! If we don’t understand God and His Truth, how will we know what the lies of the enemy’s are? The Bible is the best place to learn about God’s character.
The next best way to know God and fight back against Satan is by prayer. I admit, prayer has never really come easy for me. It’s hard for me to talk with God when He is not tangibly in front of me. But I do it because I want relationship with Him. I want to know Him, so I talk to Him. The same is true for you, friend. If you want to know God, you need to talk to Him. He wants to hear our hearts. He may already know your thoughts, but He loves when we come to Him with our praises and requests (James 5:13, Proverbs 15:8). Prayer is necessary in our walk with Jesus. It’s one of the best ways to keep our minds and hearts in line with His, and resist the devil.
I know this is all easier said than done. I have definitely struggled at times to fight well and remain steadfast in Jesus. Slowly but surely I am learning that I cannot, nor should I, rely on my own strength to fight against the enemy. I will lose. In Matthew 26:41 Jesus says, “watch and pray that your may not enter into temptation. The Spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Our flesh cannot resist temptation. We are susceptible to sin. That’s why we need Jesus. He paid the price of sin so we don’t have to. We can fight the battle against the enemy knowing that in the areas where we are weak, God is strong (2 Corinthians 12:9). He will equip and ready us for battle. It’s His strength, not ours, that will carry us through. It’s His strength that has already won the battle. We will deal with spiritual warfare in this life, but we can put our hope in the fact that the war has already been won and one day there will be no more pain, no more tears. We will finally be in right relationship with Jesus and forever distanced from the enemy’s games.
"Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away."
Revelation 21:3-4 ESV