Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.
Ephesians 6:10-12 (ESV)
Faith and spirituality lie beyond the reach of our five senses. Our age of skepticism yields a dismissive attitude towards the notion of evil spirits. Sure, we love to dress up for Halloween and go to the movie theater to check out the latest horror movie to be scared out of our wits. But to us, it’s all make believe.
Demons aren’t real.
Scripture would tend to disagree with us. The Apostle Paul certainly would. During his time ministering in Ephesus, Paul encountered a great deal of demonic activity.
We may be reluctant to admit it but a real Holy War is going on all around us. The church battles to survive the attacks of the devil, demons, and malignant supernatural beings. Part of the war is being fought here among us, full of battles and enemies we can see. Yet another part of the war is being waged out of our line of sight, in the spiritual realm, between the angel armies of God and the demonic minions of the Devil. Yes, I know this may seem crazy to you. But it is true. As believers, we are at war with the Enemy who seeks to deceive, devour and destroy us.
Throughout his letters, the Apostle Paul reminds us to put on the Lord Jesus Christ, to cloak ourselves in Him. We are to take extra measures to ensure that we leave no opening at our head, our feet our heart, our belly, our eye, our eye or our tongue. The Devil readily exploits any opportunity we provide. Scripture tells us that even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light, to deceive us, devour us, and destroy us.
The problem with not naming your Enemy is that it lulls you into a false narrative that your Enemy isn’t real. Before you know it, you let your defenses down and leave your armor at home, oblivious to the battle raging all around you.
As Christians, we have to recognize that by our profession of faith, we have chosen sides. We have publicly declared we are on God’s team. It is in our interest to protect ourselves with the Armor of God and equip ourselves with weapons the Lord has provided us, like praise and prayer, the Bible, the blood of Jesus, the power of the Holy Spirit indwelling in us, and the power of our Testimony.
While we may not readily see it, a spiritual war wages all around us. Are you prepared?