What the Bible says about Spiritual Warfare
Spiritual Warfare has often been a hot topic among Christians. And unfortunately, a very misunderstood one as well. Finis Dake deals with Spiritual Warfare and has an entire chapter devoted to it in his book Bible Truths Unmasked. Below is an excerpt from Chapter 3 of Bible Truths Unmasked, The Reality of Spiritual Warfare.
Satan the World Deceiver
The greatest and most important work of Satan is to counterfeit the doctrines and experiences of God as revealed in Scripture in order to deceive the saints. We are commanded to test every doctrine and supernatural experience to see if they are from God or from Satan (1 Cor. 2:12-16; Phil. 1:9-10; 1 Th. 5:21-22; 1 Jn. 4:1-6). Due to the diversity among the world’s religions, their doctrines and individual experiences among their adherents, it is obvious that they cannot all have godly origins. Therefore, we must judge between them by gaining a clear understanding of the clearly–written Word of God. The greatest danger for Christians is to unquestioningly accept everything in the realm of the supernatural as originating with God. Having consecrated themselves to yield to the Holy Spirit and to the leadings of God, believers often think that they cannot be deceived or led astray by evil spirits through counterfeit doctrines and readings. But the fact that a believer is a child of God does not stop the devil from trying, in every conceivable way, to imitate God. In fact, believers are precisely the ones on whom he concentrates his greatest efforts and against whom he wages war.
How to keep from being deceived
When someone is born again and becomes a spiritual person, that person enters into the realm of the supernatural and spiritual. He should begin his new life with a study of the Bible to see what it teaches and how he should walk and how to conduct spiritual warfare. If he neglects to be on guard and fails to be aggressive against satanic powers, he is liable to be defeated by them. There is nothing to be afraid of if one lives a conscientious Christian life by reading the Bible and praying daily and by living in the Spirit according to light received from God’s Word (Col. 2:6-8; Gal. 5:16-26; Rom. 8:1-13; 1 Jn. 1:7). One should get up every morning and pray and have faith in God’s help through the day. He should always meditate on the Scriptures and refuse to do anything that might be contrary to the known will of God as the Bible teaches and there will be no danger of being deceived.
We must learn not to believe anything concerning spiritual and eternal things unless it is explicitly stated in Scripture or is in harmony with them. It matters not if it comes from the best ministers in the land or from an angel from Heaven. It should be judged by what the Bible says before it is accepted as truth. We must learn to judge every impression, revelation, dream, vision or sermon. The possibility of deception should keep everyone on guard and open to testing everything by the Bible (2 Tim. 2:15; 3:15-17).
The Duty of Saints in Spiritual Warfare
(1) Beware of neglecting those things that will cause enlightenment in spiritual warfare (Ps. 1:2-4; 2 Tim. 2:15; 3:15-17).
(2) Do not fall an easy prey to the criticism of others or to the pressing cares of life which will keep you occupied from taking time to wage war successfully (Lk. 21:34-36; Eph. 6:10-18).
(3) Do not forget that spiritual weapons alone will give you the victory over sin and Satan (2 Cor. 10:4-7; Eph. 6:10-18).
(4) Do not neglect prayer and reading the Bible (Eph. 6:18; 1 Tim. 4:12-16).
(5) Do not be discouraged when the conflict for the moment seems to be going against you (1 Tim. 6:12; 2 Tim. 4:7; 1 Pet. 1:7; 4:12; Jas. 1:12).
(6) Be alert and resist Satan (Jas. 4:7; 1 Pet. 5:8-9).
(7) Do not fail to use the authority of Christ through His precious blood, His name, and the Holy Spirit against evil powers (Acts 1:8; Jn. 14:12-15; Mk. 16:15-20).
(8) Do not fail to do the whole will of God intelligently as it becomes known. Walk in the light of the Word of God (1 Jn. 1:7).Bible Truths Unmasked.