SPIRITUAL WARFARECopyright Š 2012 Robert B. Thompson. All Rights Reserved
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright Š 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.
We may have no idea of the fierceness of Satan's desire to destroy us. Satan understands that the time of his torment is drawing near, and he hopes to somehow remove this danger.
He understands also that in the last days, Christ will draw out of the Church a militant remnant who finally will overcome him.
Having been a Christian for many years, I have learned a few things about spiritual warfare. I will write these down as I think of them.
We need to remember that Satan is a deceiver. His power was broken on the cross of Calvary, so he has to work by deception. Satan is a master of deception.
It may be true that our vulnerability to deception lies in the realm of pleasure. We want to have pleasure. The problem is, our present world is not Paradise; and when we try to make it Paradise, we fall into deception. Our present world is the valley of the shadow of death. Paradise will come later when God has enough mature saints to install Paradise and to maintain it.
In the meantime, while we are in the world we shall have tribulation, according to the Lord Jesus. So the first step in combating deception is to settle in ourselves that we are going to have to learn how to accept suffering. When we try to escape suffering we can be deceived rather easily.
Let me modify what I have just said. We are not to punish ourselves. When we are suffering we should pray that God will deliver us, but not flee from our prison until God sets us free. Sometimes people are afflicted in one manner or another. Then they diagnose themselves and say God is having me suffer to perfect me; when if they had asked the Lord He would have delivered them.
We are never to take anything for granted. When we are sick we should ask Jesus what we should do about it. If He tells us to go to the doctor, then we should go, praying on the way that God will give the doctor wisdom. Then, we should do what the doctor tells us to do. Many Christians go to the doctor, and then do not do what he said. God cannot help us if we do this.
Satan studies each saint carefully. We all are different. Some can be tempted by sexual lust. Others, by money. Some are naturally lazy and will not exert themselves. Some are liars by nature. Some are ambitious and desire to be preeminent. Some are argumentative. Some are fearful. Others are bombastic.
What is a burning, fiery temptation to one person is nothing at all to another. Satan does not bother to tempt a person with sexual lust if the prime motivation of the individual is to acquire money.
We Christians in America need to become more serious. We can be serious without being grumpy. We can be friendly and courteous. But giggling, playing practical jokes, acting foolishly, has no place in the congregation of saints.
Our nation is experiencing moral corruption, and Divine judgment is certain to follow. In fact, it has begun already, as we notice the weird, illegal occurrences that will become more prevalent as God's Presence leaves our land and the demons have increased liberty to express themselves.
One foolish word out of our mouth can set in motion a string of consequences that damage many Christian people.
Moving picture productions used to be acceptable. Most of them no longer are acceptable. The language used by the actors often is filthy, and I do not believe Jesus would sit next to us in the theater and listen to such garbage.
It is not unusual in modern times for children and young people to injure people deliberately. It appear that they have no conscience. It sometimes is reported that they were carrying out scenes that they had seen on the television, or Internet, or in an electronic game.
The inability or unwillingness of our government to stop the exposure to scenes of violence, as well as pornography, is unpardonable. If freedom of speech is the reason children and young adults are exposed to violence and lust, then freedom of speech needs to be surrounded with limits. God does not promote freedom of speech but speech controlled by reasonable limits of righteousness and holiness.
Another enemy that is not often identified or addressed is the foreign gods worshiped by their adherents. Because of the ideal of "freedom of religion" we find that gods other than the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ are being worshiped in America. This will cause Divine judgment to fall on our country.
The idea of "freedom of religion" is a humanistic ideal and will lead to destruction. We used to be a "melting pot" and regarded as a Christian nation. Now we are "multicultural" and no longer a Christian nation, according to the current president.
When we speak of the "rights of people" we assume this is a Christian virtue. Assuredly it is not. Often when one person's rights are enforced the right of another automatically are removed. The result of the emphasis on the rights of people may turn into the rule of the minority.
When one person complains, the principal of a public school will not permit children to read their Bible during recess, they are not to mention the word "Christmas." What sense doe this make, when the majority of parents in the district do not agree with these prohibitions?
It is obvious that Satan is at work in our public schools, when we see the emphasis on instruction in homosexual behavior, and the questioning of the gender of the pupils. How is it that homosexuals, who assuredly are a minority in our nation, are able to impose their beliefs to such an extent on the majority of people? Is the tail wagging the dog?
This brings me to a major point. The homosexual agendas, the practice of abortion-on-demand, and the directions the city, state, and national governments are taken us, are awakening the American people to the fact that their way of life is at stake.
But what to do about it? Many Christian pastors are doing what they can to restore American values by expressing themselves publicly as they have opportunity. These efforts no doubt will increase as the presidential election takes place.
For one thing, those of us who are bewailing the destruction of Christian America must pray and find out what God wants. I have prayed much about this, to try to find the mind of the Lord. All I am getting is that the America people are sinning, with their pursuit of money, sexual excesses and perversion, multitude of needless abortions, love of pleasure and luxury, as well as drugs, alcohol, and other sinful practices.
Since we have turned our back on God, God is turning His back on us. When people emphasize the conservative and liberal positions, they are missing the root of the problem. The root of the problem is spiritual. It can be fought successfully only as people live righteously and obey Christ.
Satan cannot be fought successfully by political action, only by righteous behavior and stern obedience to Christ.
Since we are, or have been, a Christian nation, why is there such a lack of righteous behavior and obedience to Christ among the Christian people? The reason is, unscriptural doctrine is being preached, and it is giving Satan a foothold in our country.
"Grace" is being preached in place of righteous behavior. "Grace" is being preached instead of obedience to Christ and His Apostles.
Dispensational theology is being preached instead of godly behavior and obedience to Christ. "Belief" is being preached instead of a new creation of righteous behavior and holy personality.
A "rapture" is being preached instead of arming ourselves so we can stand in the evil day that rapidly is approaching America.
"Faith" and "prosperity" are being preached instead of "arm yourselves with a mind to suffer."
The Prophets of Israel are not heard in our churches, although Isaiah, Ezekiel, and Jeremiah have something to say to us. We are listening to and obeying "another gospel."
And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. (II Peter 1:19)
Since the Christian people are the light of the world, and the light is being extinguished by unscriptural teaching, is it any wonder that our nation is abandoning itself to sexual lust, the pursuit of money, worldly entertainment, material riches, a life of luxury, and the rights of the individual rather than the rights of God?
So the problem in America, and perhaps in Europe, is unrighteous behavior and the accompanying fleshly excesses due to unscriptural teaching in the Christian churches.
We read, in the Old Testament, that when the Israelites turned away from God, God sent foreign armies against them, as well as other calamities.
This is what is taking place today. We have let the followers of Islam down by not showing in ourselves the good works that Christ always produces. Therefore, Islam is invading our shores, bringing their God with them. It is our own fault. If the people of Islam had seen the kind of life that Christianity is supposed to teach, they might have a more kindly attitude toward our Lord.
The problems we are seeing are coming from Satan, who is determined to destroy the influence of America. Satan remembers the spiritual good that has gone forth from our country. It must make him furious when he remembers the sacrificial missionary work that has been done. He will stop at nothing to destroy our country.
We cannot stop Satan with political efforts or slogans. While these may help in some instances, the main problem is sin. Sin is widespread in our country. Innocent babies are slain from sea to bloody sea.
As long as abortion-on-demand is practiced in the United States of America, our enemies will prosper and increase. The result yet may be a civil war because of the mounting hatred on both sides, unless God in His goodness gets through to the pastors and evangelists that they are preaching a gospel that is not found in the Bible.
The earth is filled with God and with Satan. We choose which of the two to embrace. To not choose God is to choose Satan. God will accept our choice.