Save Time and Preach Like Never Before. Try the new
September 25, 2005
Morning Worship
Text: Ephesians 6:18-20
Subject: Spiritual Warfare – Part 4 in the Spiritual Warfare Series
Title: Practical Applications of Spiritual Empowerment

I’ve been talking to you for the last three weeks about spiritual warfare. Today we conclude the series. I’ve been trying to get you fired up for a battle. You know where your strength comes from. You know who your enemy is. Last week we talked about your spiritual armor and sword. I think we’re ready to rumble. You know I have to tell you that sometimes I think it takes a good fight to wake us up. I don’t know how you are, but with me (as I shared previously) I don’t care much for it when someone picks on my family, or my friends. That goes for my church family too. I see an enemy who is trying to beat up on our church family through sickness, injury, financial struggles, broken relationships, or spiritual apathy and I, for one, am tired of it. I’m ready for a fight.
Now that I have said that I want to lead you into what Paul says about the fight. 1) it’s a spiritual fight – remember, we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood . 2) it’s a continual fight – the battle rages around us every day 3) it is an active fight – we will not gain ground by sitting back and doing nothing. A fight when one of the participants doesn’t do anything isn’t much of a fight.
Muhammad Ali, perhaps one of the best boxers ever, perfected what he called “rope-a-dope”. He would get against the ropes and cover himself up and let his attacker throw punch after punch that never did anything but were them out. Then He would see his opening and move in for the knockout. The enemy of your soul loves to play rope-a-dope with Christians. That is why it is of the utmost importance that we understand exactly the right technique we should use to confront the enemy.
Since we have already learned about all the armor available to us, let’s see how the battle is won.

I. DEFEATING THE ENEMY WITH PRAYER. (18) “praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints…” “Praying always…” Praying is communication with God. We know that prayer is a dialogue. It was never intended to be a one-sided conversation. God wants to speak too. Praying always means to be ready at any given time to go to prayer. The word translated “always” means “to be wholly devoted to all manner of on every occasion. Supplication is simply a prayer request. Be ready at all time to take your needs to the Lord. Then wait for Him to speak. Next Paul says our prayer and supplication is to be “in the Spirit…” Prayer begins in the natural man but is transferred into the spiritual realm. That is true. But when Paul says we are to pray always and pray in the Spirit what does that tell us? 1 Corinthians 14:2, “For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God…” verse 14 “for if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding