Summary: This message explains spiritual warfare and how it affects each of us. It also shows how we can protect ourselves from it.
I have found that there are three basic types of sermons. The first kind of sermon tells about what will come our way to hurt us, and it teaches what we can do to help prevent that from happening. The second type of sermon tells about what we are doing that might allow something bad to come our way and it teaches what we can do to help prevent that from happening.
And the third type of sermon is a kinder and gentler sermon that doesn’t really warn you about anything unpleasant and does not teach us anything at all. It is an entertaining kind of sermon that gives us what we want, but does nothing to give us what we need.
Today, I am going to be preaching about something that is coming our way and it will wreak havoc upon every life on this earth. I will also teach on what we can do to help ourselves, and others, be prepared for the coming disaster.
The first biblical verse I want to quote today is found in 2 TIMOTHY 4:2. It gives my justification for preaching this sermon. It says –
“Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.”
In the very next verse, 2 TIMOTHY 4:3, we find a verse that tells us what is coming our way.
“For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear.”
And in 2 TIMOTHY 4:4, we are told what most people will do when it gets here.
“They will reject the truth and chase after myths.”
Okay, now that I have your full attention, the subject of today’s message is SPIRITUAL WARFARE. That is a subject most do not want to hear about because it requires us to think about things that we might not have that much information about. Well, today I am going to give you the basics so you can understand this spiritual war and how it involves us.
I encourage you to open your bibles to EPHESIANS 6, and keep your place there for we will come back in a few minutes to read that.
Let me begin by asking you a question that we already know the answer to: How do you feel when someone does or says something that hurts you? Of course, the answer is we get hurt, and invariably, when we get hurt the first thing we want to do is ‘get even.’
One of our marines was on the front lines in Afghanistan and received a letter from his fiancé. She told him that there was someone else and she had decided to break it off with the soldier so she could go with other man. She told him to send her picture back so she could give it to her new beau.
Can you imagine how hurt this marine was? He was in the worst place in the world to be; he was in the worst situation to be in; and he receives the worst news of his adult life. So, after a few days of grieving, he came up with a plan. He got every one of his buddies to give him the picture of their girlfriends. There was about 30 in all.
He then put them all in a box and included a letter to his former fiancé, saying;
‘I got your letter about breaking up with me and how you wanted me to send your picture back to you. I must say that I am a little embarrassed. I would love to do as you requested, but for the life of me, I cannot really remember who you are!
‘Here are some of the pictures I have, and I am sure your picture is in here somewhere. Would you go through them, take your picture out and send the rest back to me?
The whole purpose of that exercise was to inflict the same kind of hurt and humiliation on her as she had given to him. Why is it that when we get hurt, the first thing we want to do is get even? As if hurting someone else will somehow magically make our hurt go away.
When we get hurt, we become our most vulnerable, because instead of keeping our mind on what we are doing, it only focuses on what we are going through. And if a person happens to be in a dangerous area, such as a war zone, their mind needs to be fully focused.
How many of you are glad we are not in a war zone right now? Would it upset you if I informed you that we ARE in a war zone? I am not talking about the war against terrorism. I am talking about a war that is much worse than that. I am talking about a spiritual war between God and Satan. It is much worse than anything we have ever fought before.