In the war against the Romans in the first century, the Jewish people captured the advanced and heavy artillery of the Romans. The only thing is they didn’t know how to use them. They could load them, fire them, but they couldn’t hit a thing. They were just throwing rocks. It is not enough to have artillery. You must be trained, be balanced and hit the target (Isa 8.16-20).
In Heb 5.11-14 it says that we should increase in our knowledge and wisdom. But, our battles should increase with it. This will increase proportionately, but only as the Lord allows. He will not hit you at a level you are not prepared for unless you have not proceeded to the level you should have been at. If you are a “child” who is in first grade but you should be in fourth grade, God will allow you to be hit with fourth grade material. This is because you failed to learn the things you needed to learn (Judges 3.2).
How should we apply this principle in our life? What is your foundation? What is your wall? A wall is what you have built in the Scriptures. Your foundation is the Torah. If it isn’t, you are going to be defeated by false teaching and the enemy will have you “captured” without even knowing it. As you build your wall in precepts of truth, you need to temper it with the chachmah (wisdom) of God or you have nothing. You build your wall with what you understand about the Lord. That is your armor and your defense (Eph 6). The shield of faith (emunah) is “confidence” but today it is defined by as “whatever you desire” you can have it if you believe. The more you know about the Lord, the more “confidence” (faith) you have. Confidence is your shield (Eph 6.16) and this will deflect the arrows and missiles (untruths) that the enemy will send against you. If you know what to believe, you can stand.
In Rev 2.13 we read about a man named Antipas who refused to burn incense to the emperor, so he was roasted alive in an iron bull at the altar of Pergamon. What made him stand was confidence (faith). If you are going to pay a price, do it for the sake of the truth and for what you believe. Our walls cannot be your walls, you must have your own walls, shields, armor, sword and helmet. To stand by yourself you must have your own wepaons, your own “da’at” (knowledge); “chachmah” (wisdom); “binah” (understanding) and “emunah” (faith/confidence). Others can help you, but you must be able to fight your own battles. Your pastor or teacher, or your friends won’t be there fighting for you. It will be you and the enemy. If you don’t know how to fight or when to “duck behind your crenels” or “shoot behind your embrasures” you won’t last long.
Now, in a wall you must have towers, but spiritually what are they? They are the individual “units” of study we have mastered. The towers “overlap” your walls to cover all bases in an attack. There should be no “gaps” or “holes” that you can’t defend. You don’t want blind spots in your wall. Towers were high and jutted out of your wall. So, picture a wall with many towers in it. This would be hard to come against, with all their overlapping fields of fire. Lets say each tower was a unit of study you have mastered. Most towers had names, so one tower is named the biblical calendar, another the Sabbath and festivals.
The next one is the Coronation and Wedding of the Messiah, the next Congregations, next was Eschatology, then tithing and biblical giving, the purity laws, the dietary laws, the Temple, the priesthood, Hebrew idioms, phrases and concepts, warfare, manifestation of the Spirit and so on. The more you know, the better you can guard your wall at all times. You can keep the enemy from “getting in” your head because you have true knowledge and understanding, tempered with the chachmah (wisdom) of God, thus having “stability” (Deut 32.28-33; Lam 3.37; Isa 33.6). Don’t abandon your towers in a battle, either. Titus said that the towers in Jerusalem were impregnable, but the Jews abandoned them for no good reason during the siege in 70 AD. Each subject you learn and master is building a “tower” and it will overlap the other subjects you learn if it is the truth.
Now, towers were shaped square or rounded. A rounded tower is better because the arrows of the enemy would bounce off them and make it harder to climb or come against then a square tower. A square tower is when you learn a subject “in the rough.” A rounded tower, or semi-circular, is when you know it well. These towers were built with balconies with “slots” to fire straight down on the enemy. Spiritually, towers are “taking your knowledge and extending it out” so you can use it. The balconies symbolize “application.” There is no “dead ground” and the enemy will pay a price in order to get close to you.
Now, in Part 1 we mentioned the glacis. A glacis is a man-made, steep hill that comes up to your wall, usually made of dirt, or some natural, steep ravine or valley. Sometimes a glacis was made of plaster to make any attempt to get to the wall very unstable. Herod built one at Herodium, and built a massive glacis “mountain” and put his wall and fort halfway up. This was to keep the enemy away from his walls. All of this was to keep from having a battering ram come against you or having your walls “undermined” with tunnels, and any enemy coming up to a glacis was exposed to fire from the walls.
Spiritually, a glacis can be many things, but it is a “spiritual stiff-arm” for sure. How can an enemy reach us? Through our job, or finances, relationships, health, emotions, depression, deception and many other things. When he comes he’ll come from more than one direction. He will create a diversion. He may use finances to get at his real goal, the destruction of your family or health. He wants to create pressure. So, spiritually speaking, what is our glacis before the walls? It is our “attitude” (Judges 7.5-7; 2 Tim 4.2). If your attitude fails, the enemy will get to your walls (to close) and it doesn’t matter how good your wall is. If you have a good attitude and you are content no matter what you are faced with, he is not going to get to your walls.
In 2 Kings 13.14-19 we see a king who was faint in heart, so he would be faint in battle. The better your attitude, the better your “glacis” is. You can avoid a lot of battles with people if you have an attitude that you are secure in what you believe and that it would be very hard for anyone to change your mind about the things of God. Our attitude should be Isa 55.8-9 and that his ways are our ways, and his thoughts are our thoughts. Our walls of defense must complement one another because the enemy will try to isolate you (Amos 3.3). The things in your life should complement each other, and not work against each other. This includes relationships, our job, or studies and other things. An alternative to a “second wall” would a moat. This denies the enemy the use of battering rams and it takes a lot of time to build.
The ideal security for the main wall is to have a combination of a glacis and a moat. Spiritually, a moat is our “observance” of the things of God. Righteous behavior is a great weapon in spiritual warfare. Prov 16.1 says that we should prepare, but God will give us an answer of the tongue, so we should listen. When our answer is from the Lord, it goes better for us in a battle when the time comes. So, what kind of wall or fortification do we want? We want a broad, think wall with crenels and embrasures. We want a moat and a glacis, with catapults and top notch weapons and towers. But, you can’t build this overnight or by just attending meetings. You must not only learn, but gain wisdom along with it. This is the ideal security for your wall.
The gate was the weakest point, which is defined as a “gap” in the wall to allow people to enter the city. Each gate had rooms for guards and “turns” in it so that you were walking through a “gauntlet.” King Solomon followed the plans God gave to his father David concerning the priesthood, the army and the Temple. He had peace in his reign because he built strong fortifications in established cities. They found by excavating these cities, like Hazor, Megiddo and Gezer, that the gates were exactly the same. In Ezekiel’s Temple, there are six gates with the same dimensions and design. These gates had six rooms leading to the inner courts. This alludes to the 6000 years till we come to the Messiah (the inner court). Not everyone will get in.
Certain areas in our lives are “gates” and these need to be strong. For an enemy to get in, he will have to work harder. But even though he gets by the gate doesn’t mean he has made entrance into our lives. What are the “gates” we need to guard? These are our five senses. These may change in strength at times and the weakness in them are different from person to person. But, we need to guard what we see, taste, touch, smell and hear.
In Part 3, we will go over a quick review and move on to how history developed and alongside of it how warfare developed. Our spiritual warfare must develop as well because the Lord will see that it does.