WAR OF WORDS - WARFARE
(By: Robert Morris, Pastor)
When we talk about spiritual warfare, it can be best described as a war of words. There are man's words against God's words, and Satan's voice against God's voice. Satan can quickly say so many words which cause us to fear; troubling thoughts he puts into our minds like a flood -- a flood of words.
In Psalm 69 David cries out to God, saying:
"Save me, O God, For the floodwaters are up to my neck. Deeper and deeper I sink into the mire; I can't find a foothold. I am in deep water, and the floods overwhelm me." (Psalm 69:1-2)
David doesn't refer to literal floodwaters in this psalm. He uses floodwaters to represent the words of the enemy. Later, David likens the result of being overcome by the words of the enemy to a pit of death. (Psalm 69:14-15)
Like it or not, all of us will go through times when we feel as though we are in a pit.
Consider Joseph. His jealous brothers threw him into a pit then sold him into slavery and told their father that he was dead. Later, after he'd risen to a place of responsibility within Potiphar's house, the lies of Potiphar's wife caused Joseph to be put into Pharaoh's prison.
Be assured, any time you fall into a pit you will encounter the lies of the enemy, lies of accusation, lies of hopelessness, even fabricated evidence. And if you believe his lies, you could stay in that pit indefinitely. If you want to get out of that pit, you are going to have to learn to discern the enemy's lies and resist them with the Truth.
From the very beginning, Satan's tactic has been to contradict what God says through deceptive words. (Genesis 3:1-6; 2 Corinthians 11:3) Before he could convince Eve to sin, Satan had to cast doubt on the word of God.
Joseph had to fight against the lies of the enemy, and so must we if we want to get out of the pit. For us to effectively battle the enemy's tactics, we must know what God says. We know God is faithful. We know His words are true. But when we are in the pit, the enemy will try to get us to focus on our circumstances, rather than on God's faithfulness.
The enemy will even manipulate those circumstances to try to make his lies look like the truth.
So if we let the circumstances determine what we believe, we can be caught in the lies of the pit.
It's important to understand this, because the enemy is very deceptive. He will not only tell you a lie, he will fabricate evidence to support his lies. This is how he was able to get Joseph's father to believe the lie that Joseph was dead. (Genesis 37:31-33)
The brothers didn't actually tell their father that Joseph had been devoured by wild animals. Instead, they created false evidence and asked their father a misleading question: "Is this your son's coat?" Jacob believed that evidence, and he jumped to the conclusion that his son was dead. Out of his own mouth, Jacob said, "My son has been killed by wild animals." But it was a lie and he believed that lie for more than 20 years.
Satan is not original. He stole this idea from God. God wants your words to agree with His words. He wants you to say about yourself what He says about you. So does Satan. Satan wants you to believe the lie. God wants you to know the truth.
If you want to start living free, you must learn to discern the lies of the enemy. When you are in the pit, you are especially vulnerable. Circumstances usually don't look very favorable. That is exactly when Satan will manipulate circumstances in order to deceive you. He will hold up those circumstances before you as evidence that you should believe him rather than have faith in God. But fabricated evidence is not the truth. Joseph's brothers held up a substitute coat as evidence, and that evidence looked pretty convincing. But it was fabricated evidence. It was not the truth.
If you want to overcome the lies, you must learn to focus on what God has said. When you encounter difficult circumstances, you must remember that nothing is too hard for God, no matter what evidence the enemy might produce.
When we are in an argument with someone, words are our weapon of choice. The sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, is the most effective weapon we have in spiritual warfare. (Ephesians 6:10-17) That is what is successful against Satan's arguments against us. (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)
Jesus tells his listeners that those who listen to his words and do what he says are like those whose foundations are so solid that they will not be overcome by floodwaters (Matthew 7:24-27). His disciples are those who are faithful to His teachings. They are the ones who will be set free because they know the truth. (John 8:31)
In the end, Satan is overcome by the shed blood of Jesus and the word of our testimony. (Revelation 12:11) The word of our testimony is what God says is true about us. That's the final word. Winning this war of words is the first step to living free.
I especially appreciate Pastor Robert Morris bringing clarity to Revelation 12:11. It is obvious to most reading the Precious Testimonies website that God has called my wife and I to publish Christ-centered testimonies. We've been doing so for over 30 years in one form or another. In that 30 plus years, it amazes us how many Christians we've heard use Revelation 12:11 as the reason for letting God use our personal testimonies ... missing the most important revelation of this scripture passage. God uses personal testimonies to help fulfill Psalms 96:3 and aiding in helping fulfill The Great Commission. He also uses them to bring hope and encouragement and spiritual insight to people as He wills, to assist in the spiritually discipling process, so in a secondary revelation of Revelation 12:11 if you will, testimonies have great value to God! But Satan is NOT overcome by our personal testimonies when trials beset us. (Try quoting your personal testimony to the devil when the heat is on - when your battle rages, and see how far it gets you!) The ONLY thing that will overcome Satan's attacks is using the correctly - wisely applied Word of God for every situation we are faced with (and of course any Holy Spirit rhema word(s) God may give you as well for your specific situation). God makes certain His power will back His Word when we do. Yet we must always be patient until we see God win our battle for us.
Satan uses our lack of patience and persistence to get us to believe standing on God's word does NOT help us, thereby using his weapon of doubt to rob us of the eventual victory. Again - Satan is a liar, and God's Word is always true ... but I feel to emphasize again, we must correctly - wisely apply God's Word - standing on in when circumstances are screaming to the contrary - in our situation/trial before we realize breakthrough. Breakthrough sometimes happens quickly ... and then there are some times when we have to have patience required to hitchhike to the moon it seems, and the number of rocket ships called "DOUBT" seem to be the only vehicles willing to stop and give us a ride. Remember: God's time is hardly EVER our time ... but God's time is ALWAYS the right time regarding breakthrough and victory. If we don't by faith - trust - force ourselves to believe that ... trials can be a lot more painful and probably last longer than necessary.
Conversely, using God's Word out of its intended Holy Spirit context does not obligate God to back up our desired intentions, nor does it threaten Satan. A common strategy Satan uses to mess with our confidence in God is to trick us into standing on portions of God's Word that He knows God most likely won't honor for us, so be very wise in what portions of God's Word you stand on in your battle. It is the Holy Spirit's job to give you peace about which Word(s) you are to stand on, so dig in with Him until peace and confidence comes, and then when you've done all (and continue keeping doing all - continuing to use your spiritual weapons) ... continue to STAND until Satan flees from you in your respective battle! Yet be aware. Satan can be expected to attack you again in the future, (though don't get paranoid or fearful about it), especially if you are serious about being used of God to help win souls to Jesus Christ, and then help those young Christian disciples grow in their relationship with God. (Being fully engaged in doing the work of helping advance the Kingdom of God in the lives of people, in other words) - Norm Rasmussen, Precious Testimonies
Dear Reader - are you at peace with God? If not, you can be. Do you know what awaits you when you die? You can have the assurance from God that heaven will be your home, if you would like to be certain. You can even have that assurance RIGHT NOW! Either Jesus Christ died for your sins, or He didn't (He did!). Are you prepared to stand before God on the Judgment Day and tell Him that you didn't need the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the Cross to have your sins forgiven and get in right-standing with God? We plead with you...please don't make such a tragic mistake.
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