Summary: A series looking at the daily realities of spiritual warfare which we all face.
What about spiritual warfare?
In our previous three nights, we have defined spiritual warfare from 2 Corinthians 10 and we have looked at discernment and false discernment.
Tonight, we will take the next step as I share some of my personal experiences in the extra ordinary circumstances of spiritual warfare.
Before I get into that, I want to say a couple of things.
The last three weeks, I have tried to be very clear about something, the bulk of spiritual warfare is the day to day struggle between sin and flesh and the will of God.
Much, in not the vast majority, of our involvement in spiritual warfare is not in direct contact or communication with demons or satan.
I will get into this more in depth in our wrap up of this series in the next couple of weeks, and I touched on it Sunday, but let’s take a moment to see something in 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 [read]
Paul knew he was under a specific demonic attack. I don’t think there is any other way of interpreting it.
Yet, look at what he did not do: he did not “bind” anything in Jesus’ name, nor did he “loose” anything, he didn’t even take authority over it, in fact, we have no reason to believe he interacted at all with whatever this messenger of Satan was
What he did do is go straight to God. Instead of demanding that the thorn “be gone in Jesus’ name” he sought out God’s will
Remember that is what it is all about, the will and knowledge of God
He asked God to remove it and then trusted God to do what was in His will
However, there are times that we do take an active role directly against demonic forces.
In Matthew 10, Jesus is sending out the 12 on their first mission if you will and he is giving them instruction on what they are to do.
In Ephesians 6 we see a more clear understanding of what we are up against in this realm.
Now I am not a demonologist nor do I spend a lot of time studying or thinking about demons. Simple reason is, I trust God.
But a couple of things I do know. They are real, they are many, they are evil, and they have an empire with rank and order. You can find more about this if you like in the following scriptures: 1 Peter 5:8; Revelation 12:4-7; Ephesians 2:2, and John 14:30 just to give you a start.
Let’s talk about a couple of these we find in Ephesians 6
I will start with an experience I have personally had in Uruguay two years ago.
That was probably one of the most overtly spiritually active trips I have personally been a part of.
Before the trip, I had a special sense that we needed to take trhe extra step of prayer just to be ready.
Beyond the normal prayer times in our weekly meetings and the daily prayer journals I had the team fill out, I led them in 40 days of prayer and fasting that ended on our last day in Uruguay.
Once we got there, I found out that God was preparing us for what we would deal with.
We experienced direct attacks on our team physically with a broken collar bone of one girl and illness and other problems among the team, we were blocked from some of what was planned as doors that should not have been closed were closed so that changes to our trip had to be made on the fly.
At one church I preached in and the group led in worship and did dramas, there was a number of all out demonic manifestations during the altar time including one where the pastor’s wife took over the microphone and started calling out her husband in front of everyone, it was a deliberate attempt to split that church and destroy that family
We continued to lead our team in prayer as one morning I changed our schedule and we had an extended time of team prayer after our devotions that lasted a couple of hours as we laid hands on each team member as a team and prayed specifically for them and what they were experiencing and dealing with. We also took part in a three hour prayer vigil with the Bible school students.
It is the only time in my life that I have had dreams that I would say were specifically from God and related to what we were dealing with as I saw in my dreams the spiritual forces around us and exactly what God was doing.