Ephesians 6:10-12: Spiritual Warfare
What is the biggest problem facing the world today? Covid 19? Strong-handed governments who are taking too many of our freedoms to keep us safe? Islam? War with China? Global warming? Critical Race Theory? The new gender ideology? Big Tech? A leftist media? These are big problems but they are only symptoms of the biggest problem that we face, we are in a spiritual battle with the devil. To say this is to provoke laughter from anyone who thinks after the New Atheist school. Here in the West we are afflicted with the problem of naturalism, I don’t mean nude beaches I mean a worldview that does not believe in God, the devil, sin, angels, the soul, the afterlife. On the one hand we have those who don’t take things seriously enough, on the other are those who are fanatics and take things too far. One of the reasons for Conversion Therapy Laws on the horizon is because of those who have believed that every sin and temptation can be traced back to a demonic source, and because they believe that Christians can be demon possessed, you need to cast out the demon of homosexual lust as a way to make people stop being gay. There are Christians view of spiritual warfare that see every problem as having a spiritual warfare solution. Evangelism is done by first binding territorial spirits, counselling is done by casting out demons and inner healing, sanctification is done by casting out demons, and eliminating generational curses; prayer is about gaining knowledge of territorial spirits and rebuking the devil directly, ordering angels around, pleading the blood of Jesus, etc. The Bible gives us the path of sanity between these extremes.
Every Christian is caught up in the most powerful struggle in all time and the universe. Every Christian is called to be prepared and to play their part in this battle. Paul writes His letter to the Ephesians not to a pastor like Timothy or Titus, nor to an individual like Philemon, but to the whole church in Ephesus. His words on spiritual warfare are addressed to everyone in the church, not merely a select few. He writes to mothers, fathers, children, workers not only to intercessors or exorcists. Paul Himself is deep in the fray, he is writing this letter from prison. If you read the letter to the Ephesians to sweeps you up in the wonderful salvation that God is bringing about in His Church. Paul outlines this salvation and its application to us by God’s gracious power. He reveals the mystery of the ages, the church made up from all nations. He calls the Ephesians to put off the old life and follow the new. Paul enters into the fine detail of how to apply Godly living in the home and at work, and just when you think he might end the letter, he saves the most important for last. The last instructions in the book of Ephesians are around this issue of spiritual warfare in Ephesians 6:10-20. That word, ‘finally’ in Ephesians 6:10 indicates not a mere after thought but a vital part of living the new life. As normal as being part of a family and working, so normal is it to be a soldier in a spiritual battle.
Today we will be looking at v10-12 looking at who our ally is, and who our enemy is.