The Spiritual Warrior-Part 1

We are going to begin our study by discussing the three basic elements of war. The first is mobility and this involves the capacity of the warrior to move fast and far. This would include chariots, cavalry, jets, tanks or anything that helps in movement. The second is firepower, which are weapons with the purpose to hit the enemy at different ranges. The third is security, which are protective devices such as helmets, shields and armor with the purpose to thwart the effectiveness of an enemy weapon.

How would we apply this spiritually? Mobility is not reading a chapter or two a day. This will not give you the ability to move fast. It is too slow and you don’t move far enough. You need to be able to move from concept to concept without blinking an eye. You need to be able to answer questions on a variety of subjects. Firepower is prayer, and ineffectual prayer is not going to do you any good (Jam 5.16). Security is doing what the Lord commanded to do (Isa 33.6). The Lord has given us defensive weapons as well as offensive (Eph 6.10-17). Trying to make something happen by “confession” is not how the Lord fights battles (Lam 3.37). The enemy laughs at us while we think we fought a major battle.

A different route might have accomplished the same goal. When we try to confess things, name it claim it and do what the faith movement teaches we lose battles and don’t even know it. We need to learn how to use the weapons that the Lord has given us as a warrior, and the first thing you will learn is discipline and obedience to the commandments. Fight when the battle is before you. Don’t expend your energy. Instead of running around telling people about the Lord, spend your time studying in order to know the Lord (Jer 9.23-24). Then we let the Lord lead you when to speak.

For example, let’s say you decide to read one chapter of the Scriptures a day, but that isn’t effective. So you decide to read 10 chapters a day, but the enemy still pins your ears back. Why? Your mobility was hindered, you couldn’t learn and absorb the concepts lime upon line, precept upon precept. All you are doing was going through a “ritual” and a “practice” but you weren’t learning concepts. In the final analysis, it is not the weapons alone which determine the issue in a battle. In most cases it comes down to the spirit of the commander in directing his army, and the spirit of the warriors in being able to handle their weapons. We know we have the greatest commander, but we need to be able to use the weapons he has given us, and that is knowing the Scriptures.

Attitude can make all the difference, but it is hard to maintain in a battle. The “will” to engage in the fight is important (Judges 20.18-48). In the area of mobility, we need to view our walk with the Lord as a “chariot” which is made up of many parts. The throne of God is described as a chariot (“merkavah”). The chariot must be good and any defective part could cost your life, or a battle. This is your vehicle to travel in your study of God. That means you may need to spend more time and money on good study materials.

Most of the religious information available out there is defective and will not make your “chariot” (or jet, ship or tank) very powerful. Your “chariot” or mobile firing platform must be the best, made up of the best materials. Israel didn’t have chariots till David. As a new believer, you won’t be riding in a “chariot” at first either. It is only when you become “rich” in truth and knowledge and “advanced” will you be able to build and ride on a chariot, and this takes time.

Chariots came out of Mesopotamia (1 Chr 19.6) and Sumer had the earliest form of chariot, but it was a death trap. It was clumsy, but they continued to improve upon it until it became streamlined, maneuverable, sleek and fast. This is how our walk with the Lord should be. It should advance from clumsy and not very maneuverable to sleek and fast. When it comes to firepower, you don’t want to have the wrong weapon for the battle you are in. You must learn your weapons and the enemy’s weapons. You must learn how to defend against them (we will learn more on this later). You don’t fight an Assyrian (who liked to steamroll you) like you would a Philistine (who liked close combat). The enemy is trying to “penetrate” you by getting to your heart (the head was the most vulnerable in a battle, and spiritually so is ours), changing how you think and believing lies.

Now, technology was not as advanced in some countries as others. Not all the weapons were the same in quality. King Saul’s army only had two swords in it against the Philistines because they had iron weapons and the Israelites had bronze. Swords were different, shields were different and so were other weapons, varying from country to country.

As we said, the head was the most vulnerable, just like the “capital” is the main city. When we “lose our head” we get decapitated. One of the greatest chapters on spiritual warfare is seen in Isa 36.1-37. This is an example of psychological warfare. The enemy will speak to discourage you (v 4,5,18). They will magnify the problems you have (v 12). They will speak to those who don’t know what to do, not the leaders (v 11-12). They will play mind games (v 10) and make false promises, but the end is slavery (8,16-17).

The essence of psychological warfare is to confuse the meaning of words and infiltrate the thinking with conflicting concepts. This is what is happening to believers today. False religions take the words the Bible uses and redefines them, causing confusion among believers unless they know the Lord and the Scriptures in the way the Lord intended. When we teach the Lord’s Supper, or immersions, or any other biblical concept, churches have a whole other concept and meaning to these things. That is the essence of psychological warfare.

In this study, we need to see our family, congregation, country or Bible study as a city or fortification. Changing strategies necessitates changing defenses, and back and forth. We need to see ourselves as a city (Jer 1.18). Israel in the wilderness (B’Midbar) was protected from penetration from their enemies. But if you messed up, you could be “karet” or “cut off” and put out of the camp, which meant death. It was believed that the abode of Satan is the wilderness and so were the enemies of Israel. Miriam was put out of the camp for gossip against her brother Moses, but he stayed with her until she was healed (Num 12.1-16).

In 1 Cor 5.1-5 an individual was put out of the congregation so the enemy can get to him, or penetration. When Paul said he turned that person “over to Satan for the destruction of his flesh” it was a Hebrew idiom for being put out of the camp. Fortifications are barriers that deny the enemy advantages in mobility, firepower and security while providing the same for you. The defenders must be able to move and fire their weapons from behind its defenses.

One of the problems the defenders at the Alamo experienced is that their walls were too thin and they had to stand on top of the walls to fire down at the enemy, thus exposing themselves to enemy fire. You are going to have to be able to fight as much as you are trying to block the enemy from fighting you. When talking about attack and penetration, there are five ways the enemy will try to get behind your “walls.”

First, there was penetration by force from above (over your walls with ladders, etc). Second, penetration through a barrier (with a battering ram). Third, penetration from below through “tunnels.” Fourth, a siege (which is long). Fifth, penetration by trickery or deception (like the horse at Troy). The weakest part of a wall was the gates and that is where the focus of the enemy will be. Spiritually, what are our gates? We are most vulnerable when they are open. Spiritual “battering rams” are when we are hit head on, a frontal “right between the eyes” over and over again. If you aren’t able to stop it, you are done. There were two methods to defeating the battering ram. Burn the ram or put a chain around it to turn it around. Penetration from below through tunnels is when we are attacked in “darkness” and “before you know it” and “didn’t see it coming.” Your enemy “tunneled” right under you, pulled the rug from under you and so on.

There was someone “undermining” you at work, or in the family, and before you know it, the enemy is inside your gates causing all sorts of problems. Before you know it, the gates of your life are wide open and you are overwhelmed. The best defense for this is to be aware of the “undermining” factor and if you see a tunnel, cave it in right away before the enemy can use it against you, stop them in their tracks by confronting them.

A siege is a sustained attack against you to wear you down, cut you off from others and your supply line till you give up. Penetration by deception can come in many forms. One way was to get the defenders of a city to come out from behind their walls to chase you. Then you turn around, defeat them and overpower the guards at the gates and open them to your forces. Joshua did this at Ai. The Greeks used a wooden horse, making the Trojans think it was a gift. The Trojans brought the horse in, but didn’t know it was full of Greek soldiers. At some point in the night, they came out and opened the gates of Troy and the city fell.

Spiritually, this is when we are deceived into believing something that is not true, leading to a fall or error in doctrine. When building your city, don’t be cut off from your water source, either, which is the word of God. No matter what, don’t be cut off from good teaching. The enemy will attack us through the “water” or the word of God. They will say “The word of God says” such and such when it really doesn’t.

There are people teaching about prophecy, the blood moons, the Shemittah and other things right now saying the word of God is saying certain things when it isn’t. Many are being deceived by this and will find out too late that they wasted a lot of time and energy on something false. These teachers quote each other, calling each other prophets and devising all sorts of eschatological scenarios that just aren’t there. They criticize those who believe in a pre-Tribulation “rapture” when they don’t know the festivals, the 7000 year plan of God or Biblical eschatology themselves.

We must have “da’at” (knowledge) and the “chachmah” (wisdom) of God to discern these things. We must have “mayim chaim” or the living water of the Lord, not the foul water of false prophets. Many times a water tunnel was dug to bring water into the city. If this water tunnel is found out, the enemy can penetrate the city and defeat you. Spiritually, be careful about bringing water into your city because the enemy may try to use your teaching, or words, against you.

They will try to discredit good teachers (a water source) you may have. We must not spread ourselves too thin so that we can’t defend ourselves. In building walls, you want to keep the enemy away from them, or keep him from tunneling underneath you. So, you built a “glacis” which is a steep hill to your walls. Jerusalem could only be attacked from the north by the Romans because it was surrounded on three sides by steep valleys, an natural glacis. This is very hard for attackers to climb or for them to undermine the walls. Spiritually, our “glacis” is our attitude (more on this in Part 2).

If we have a bad attitude, the enemy will get to your walls and your walls are your knowledge, understanding and wisdom of God. Each bit of truth, each concept you learn is like a huge brick that is placed in your wall. The foundation of our walls must be deep and broad, on rock, which is the Torah (Exo 17.1-6; Matt 24-26). But, it is not enough to have a wall, we need to take steps to keep it from being undermined. It doesn’t feel good to be undermined, so we need to take steps beforehand, not after something happens. In Jer 50.14 it says that the foundations of Babylon have fallen, the walls have been torn down. Take any issue, like eschatology, the festivals, knowing Hebrew, the Torah or whatever. There are great “gaps” in what should be and what is.

Jer 50.11 says that the walls of Babylon fell because they had a lack of true knowledge. What verse describes how to fight spiritually? Isa 33.6 says “And he (the Lord) shall be the stability (emunah=the word for faith, our “walls” or shield) of your times, a wealth of salvation (“yeshuat” in Hebrew), wisdom (chachmah) and knowledge (da’at). The fear of the Lord is his treasure.” Once you have this, you can rebuild (Isa 58.12 61.4).

In Part 2, we will pick up here and continue with our study about Spiritual Warfare. This will be given in many parts and will take awhile to develop, but this is absolutely necessary in your walk to learn what Spiritual Warfare is and is not, and how to apply it. Warfare, especially spiritual, is something that has to be taught and learned and that is what we are going to do. It will be worth it and is necessary for our testimony, bearing witness to the truth, against reproaches that will never end, having conflict with heretical teachers and followers, watching for heresies from your walls and rejecting the stubborn and incorrigible. This will occur not only with flesh and blood, but with Satan, the commander of the enemy forces, as well.

Posted in Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *