Video by Got Questions Ministries

Have you ever felt like your life is under attack – financially, relationally, emotionally, or physically?

Have you experienced seasons where one thing after another goes wrong? You begin to wonder if bad luck is just hounding you.

What if these aren’t just strings of misfortune? What if evil forces are scheming to destroy your life?

The concept of contending with evil is foreign to many. But spiritual warfare has its basis in the Bible and is a significant part of living the Christian life.

What is Spiritual Warfare?

What is Spiritual Warfare?

Spiritual warfare is the act of fighting against demonic attacks and resisting the devil’s attempts to derail your relationship with God.

It is the reality of invisible power encounters in the spiritual realm that manifest in the visible, physical realm.

The Apostle Paul warns us:

“For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.”

Ephesians 6:12 (NLT)

Spiritual warfare includes:

  • Prayer.
  • Fasting.
  • Praise and worship.
  • Anointing with oil.
  • Proclaiming scripture.
  • Exorcism.

Engaging in these activities resists demonic interference and breaks strongholds in your life.

The Biblical Basis for Spiritual Warfare

What Does The Bible Say About The Law Of Attraction

Where does the idea of invisible demonic and angelic conflicts come from? And what is their goal?

According to the Bible, the spiritual realm is comprised of God and His loyal angels, and satan (the devil) with his army of demonic, fallen angels.

This conflict between good and evil spiritual forces was first recorded in Genesis 3, with the temptation of Adam and Eve.

Revelation 12:7-9 (NIV) describes an epic battle that took place in heaven:

7 Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. 8 But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven. 9 The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.”

Satan and his minions want to keep people from experiencing the full purpose God has for them. But Christ already achieved victory by His sacrificial death on the cross for all mankind. 

Spiritual warfare is the ongoing battle to prevent Christians from enjoying Christ’s victory and stop the spread of the Gospel.

How Do You Fight Spiritual Warfare? The Armor of God

Using The Armor Of God

The Apostle Paul taught extensively on recognizing and resisting spiritual attacks in Ephesians 6:10-20. His instructions center around putting on the full armor of God.

Let’s break this down…

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

Ephesians 6:10-12 (NIV)

Paul urges complete reliance on God’s power and might not on our own strength. He then identifies where the true battle lies – not in the physical realm, but against rulers and forces in the spiritual realm. 

Spiritual warfare requires special ‘equipment’ to engage because the conflict is spiritual, not physical.

The Belt of Truth

“Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist.”

Ephesians 6:14a (NIV)

As with a Roman soldier’s armor, the belt secures the rest of the equipment in battle.

Likewise, God’s revealed truth in the Bible holds everything together, helping us to discern and resist spiritual attacks with truth.

The Breastplate of Righteousness

“…with the breastplate of righteousness in place.”

Ephesians 6:14b (NIV)

A breastplate shielded ancient soldiers’ vital organs in combat. Righteousness refers to our innocence before God.

Believers must apply Christ’s righteousness by faith to protect their hearts from condemnation.

Romans 3:22 (AMP) states:

“This righteousness of God comes through faith in Jesus Christ for all those [Jew or Gentile] who believe [and trust in Him and acknowledge Him as God’s Son].”

Shoes of Peace

“With your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.”

Ephesians 6:15 (NIV)

Proper footwear equipped Roman infantry for combat readiness. The gospel of peace describes the reconciliation work of Christ.

As Christians, we must wear our shoes of peace and go out to tell sinners about Jesus and the hope of salvation before it is too late.

Jesus instructed His disciples just before His ascension to heaven:

19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Mathew 28:19-20 (NIV)

These instructions apply to us as well and as we obey we will engage the evil one and defeat his schemes to deceive the world.

The Shield of Faith

“In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.”

Ephesians 6:16 (NIV)

The Roman scutum was a large shield that covered most of the soldier’s body.

Likewise, faith in God and His promises diffuses doubt, fear, delay, and other “flaming missiles” the enemy fires at our minds.

Activating your faith requires you to think, speak, and act according to God’s Word.

The Helmet of Salvation

“Take the helmet of salvation.”

Ephesians 6:17a (NIV)

Helmets protected combatants’ heads from fatal blows. Salvation is deliverance from sin and receiving the gift of eternal life from God.

When you remember and meditate on this truth it will protect your mind against the enemy’s lies.

The Sword of the Spirit

“…and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

Ephesians 6:17b (NIV)

In addition to defensive armor, Roman soldiers used swords in offensive combat.

God’s Word equips believers to attack deceptive philosophies and arguments raised against them.

It also helps to drive out the lies of the enemy as Jesus demonstrated when tempted in the wilderness (Matthew 4).

When the devil tries to deceive you with a lie speak out loud the truth from the Bible that counters that lie. 

For example, when faced with financial challenges the devil whispers, “You’ll never make it. You’re done.” Counter that lie by speaking out loud, “My God will supply all my needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to me in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19)

Wearing the Armor Daily

Real Life Applications Of The Armor Of God

Paul summarized his teaching by saying:

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.”

Ephesians 6:18-20 (NIV)

Prayer is essential both individually and corporately. Every believer must remain watchful against attacks through consistent prayer.

Our spiritual weapons equip the church to advance the Gospel across the earth.

Trust in the power of the Holy Spirit and nurture your relationship with Christ through prayer, studying scripture, worship, and fellowship with other believers.

This will break any legal grounds for demonic interference from past participation in sin or occult practices. Stand firm in your identity in Christ.

“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”

James 4:7 (NIV)

And if you fall, repent and receive God’s forgiveness and cleansing through Jesus’ blood.

“If we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.”

1 John 1:9 (NIV)

So remain vigilant, but don’t fear. God has done it all! We can walk confidently into spiritual battle knowing victory already belongs to us.

Key Takeaways on Spiritual Warfare

  • Spiritual warfare is the act of contending against evil forces in the unseen realm that manifests in the visible realm.
  • According to the Bible, Satan employs schemes to hinder Christians from God’s purposes through deceptive philosophies and accusations.
  • Believers must rely on God’s power and utilize spiritual disciplines and the full armor of God, especially scripture, to combat spiritual attacks.
  • Jesus achieved ultimate triumph over Satan and his followers by His atoning death and victorious resurrection. This allows believers to resist the devil, who must then flee.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Is spiritual warfare something Christians still experience today?

A. Yes, absolutely! Followers of Christ are automatically at odds with the forces of darkness seeking to derail their God-given destiny and hinder the gospel message.

Although Christ achieved victory by His sacrificial death on the cross, spiritual warfare remains ongoing until his final return and judgment over Satan.

Believers experience this battle through temptations to sin, accusations of unworthiness, demonic oppression, illness, or interference with ministry efforts and outreach.

Fortunately, God has made His spiritual armor available to us and we can enforce victory in all areas of our lives.

Q. What are some signs I may be under spiritual attack?

  • Intensified temptations, anxiety, fear, confusion, or doubt.
  • Reoccurring nightmares.
  • Thoughts of self-harm.
  • Isolation or breakdown of godly relationships.
  • Accusatory self-talk demeaning your identity in Christ.
  • Disrupting illness or injuries.
  • Setbacks, failed projects, or delayed opportunities.

Ask God to reveal anything allowing access to the enemy. But react in faith according to scriptural truth – never wavering from your position of victory through the blood of Jesus Christ.

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