What is spiritual warfare? For the prophet Elisha it looked like this – “Now the king of Aram … sent horses and chariots and a strong force to capture Elisha in Dothan. And Elisha’s servant said to him, ‘Alas, my master! What shall we do?’ Elisha answered, ‘Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.’ Then Elisha prayed and said, ‘O Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.’ And the Lord opened the servant’s eyes and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.- 2Kings 6:8-17. This was spiritual warfare on a grand scale.
On a smaller scale, spiritual warfare can show up in family as a rift between father and son or in bickering between husband and wife. One family recognized the devil’s scheme of getting a wedge started in a relationship until he could claim a full fracture between father and child or husband and wife. They realized only the devil did not want them to enjoy the love of God in family. Any time someone felt they were getting short with another family member or starting to bicker, they would rebuke the scheme saying, “Leave, there is no place here for you devil!”
On a larger scale, the coronavirus and rioting in the streets provide examples of spiritual warfare today. With the virus, evil loves noise so he takes opinions to the extremes – Shut down or open up; Isolate or congregate; masks or no masks; death by Covid or comorbidity? The resultant noise level drowns out any rational discussion or approach. Rioting in the streets reflects the devil’s despise for order and authority. He likes to start in the home where he stirs up disrespect for dads and moms. Then he will distract a pastor or priest and stir up disrespect for all clergy. He does the same for law officers and politicians until there is disrespect for all authority, chaos. Evil’s methodology is consistent: destroy relationships; cause division; create noise and compromise authority.
Christians can call on the One True God to rebuke this evil. When it comes to relationships, God sent His only Son to restore what was lost in the Garden, relationship with Him. When it comes to division, the triune nature of our God offers healing as He conveys the unity of three in One. When it comes to noise, our Lord God says, “Be still and know that I am God.”- Ps 46:10. And with chaos, it is important to know that God is the author of order. His order was established through the ancient Israelites – Under God were judges and under judges were the people; it is evident in the eloquence of His creation – the mountains, valleys, wildlife; and, it is on full display through the design of the human body – from the eye to the brain, to the heart, to our DNA.
God is a God of relationships, unity, quiet and order. Similar to the four points on a compass – North, South, East and West, the charge is to navigate through this world with a life compass that has relationships, unity, quiet and order as the four points. Stay focused on loving relationships in marriage and family; Unity in the Church under the word of God; Quiet time with Him in prayer and scripture; and, Order under the authority the Lord establishes. Then we will not be distracted by peripheral battles but will stand firm in spiritual warfare to defend our Biblical worldview.
Prayer guide: Thank You Lord for Your word and for the direction You provide through spiritual warfare. Help me navigate well focusing on loving relationships in marriage and family, unity under Your word and in Your love, quiet time in prayer and scripture and respect for the authority You establish. Keep me focused on Your life compass. Amen.
A faithful father navigates through spiritual warfare with God’s life compass.