Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:12.
Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world. 1 Peter 5:8-9.
Today your LORD (יהוה) God (אלהים) says:
You are living in a battlefield of which most people are entirely unaware. Why? Because the forces that you are fighting are not of flesh and blood or of anything you can see with your physical eyes, they are spiritual forces of darkness, that is, your adversary the devil and his demons. And if you do not enforce your victory, they will take you down. But I have equipped you with all you need to take the devil and his demons down every time. But you must not be lazy about this. You cannot just ignore him. You have to resist him, firm in your faith, and he will have to flee from you. I am talking about fighting the good fight of faith.
And as we continue our series on how to live by faith, this is Life Lesson No. 4: How to Fight the Good Fight of Faith. It is a good fight because in Christ Jesus you have already won, you are just enforcing your victory by faith and taking back and maintaining your territory by faith. You will have trials in this world, but take courage and cheer up, My Son has overcome the world and He has given you the victory. And what is that victory? Your faith.
So how do you fight the good fight of faith? Go to My Word and find your answers, for in My Word are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, and My Word is a person and He is your Teacher, and He is in you to guide you to all truth by His Holy Spirit.
First, to fight you have to know who your opponent is and have the proper weapons to fight him, otherwise you may be fighting the wrong foe and using the wrong weapons and the real enemy will carry off all your goods without you being aware who is doing it. You see this in the life of Job. It is very clear that the devil was the one taking Job’s possessions and family, and that he opened himself to that by fear and dread, for what he feared came on him and he had no peace. He had been afraid to correct or supervise his children and feared for their lives. But the part that caused the main problem was that he blamed Me for what happened to him and his family and he fought with Me about it in trying to prove to Me that he was righteous and did not deserve what was happening, while all the time he needed to rout out the devil and take hold of My Word. He got mad at his friends too who kept trying to tell him he was not so righteous, but they missed it too, because they also were trying to put the blame on Me but as punishment of Job for sin, which it was not. He had to uncover the enemy to address the situation properly. And the devil is good at slithering in to take you captive by giving you thoughts that you should never entertain but get rid of them, fire them, the minute they come. Test everything by whether it matches up with My Word.
Do not be ignorant of the devil’s devices, schemes, and wiles or he will take advantage of you. 2 Corinthians 2:11. He hides under the cover of darkness, he rarely will come into the light, for darkness cannot stay in the presence of light. Light overcomes darkness. And you see a key there. My Word is a light to your path and a lamp to your feet. The revelation of My Word gives light. So if you are in a dark place you need to put on My armor of light.
So the first step in fighting the good fight of faith is to be aware of who your enemy is, for your struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12. It is not your spouse, siblings, children, boss, politicians, or others you are fighting but the demon spirit who is behind their behavior and has taken them captive to do his will. You must uncover him in prayer and go after him as I show you in My Word.
The next step is to know how to fight. And for this you need inside information for this is a battle in the spiritual realm and not the physical. This is taking down spiritual forces of wickedness in heavenly places. For though you are in the flesh, you do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of your warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. You are destroying speculations (imaginations) and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of My Word, and you are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5.
You will notice when the devil tempted Adam and Eve it did it by words, by thoughts, by persuasion to doubt My Word and to exalt themselves. He is still the same. He will either try to destroy you by guilt and shame, or by pride, lust and selfish ambition, or by fear of death and doubt of My love and care for you. For the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from Me, but is from the world, and Adam made the devil the “god” of this world. But the world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does My Will lives forever. If Adam and Eve had done My Will, as clearly expressed in My Word, they would not have been taken in by the tactics of the devil. And here is the key to fight the good fight of faith, you must never budge off My Word.
There is a reason in the vision of the Risen and Glorified Lord Jesus that My apostle John witnessed on the Island of Patmos that a sharp two-edged sword came out of His mouth and His face was like the sun shining in its strength. Revelation 1:16. And it is with that sword proceeding from His mouth that He triumphs over the beast, the false prophet and the forces who have joined them in the battle against My people that ushers in Christ’s thousand year reign from David’s throne. Revelation 19:15-21. My Word is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12. And the word used for two-edged there actually means “two mouths.” Two witnesses, My Word and your agreement with it. And this is the only way you can fight in the spiritual realm, by taking up the sword of the Spirit, which is My Word. Ephesians 6:17. And how do you wield it? You speak to the mountain. Mark 11:23. You cast out demons. And when the devil tells you one of his lies, because he is a liar and the father of lies, you get out you Sword and thrust him through with the Scripture that takes down what he is telling you. Jesus showed you how to do this when He responded to the devil as he tried to tempt Jesus in the wilderness. Jesus would counter each temptation and test with My Word, “It is written . . .” And that ended the matter. That would have been the correct response for Adam and Eve to end the matter with the devil, but they preferred to dialog with him and he was able to talk them out of My Word into his lie. Stand your ground and do not budge off My Word. Submit to My Word, resist the devil’s words and tests by My Word, and he will have to flee from you. Truth will prevail over the lie.
But you are to be on the alert with all prayer and petition at all times in the Spirit, and, through faith and patience, obtain the promises in My Word. Keep praying for others as well that all people are saved and come to know the truth.
I train your hands for battle and your fingers for war. Lay your hands on the sick, cast out the devil with a flick of your finger. That is the way I do it. David was not a trained warrior but he conquered Goliath in just a few minutes and for weeks not one trained soldier in the Israelite army had dared to take Goliath on. But David knew Me and they did not. It makes a big difference.
And I give you My armor for defense and offense. I have equipped you. Put on My full armor so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For your warfare is against a spirit in a spirit arena, do not try to take him on in arguments of a fleshly nature, that will not tear down strongholds but get you into a dialogue with him and you should not be conversing with the stranger, you must silence him, as Jesus did in no uncertain terms. You must take up My full armor, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. STAND FIRM, therefore, having girded your loins with truth (reproduce only My Word in your life), and having put on the breastplate of righteousness (established in My righteousness through Jesus you will be far from oppression and fear), and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace (spreading the sweet aroma of Christ everywhere and bringing shalom and reconciliation to those far and those near0; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one (the spirit of faith is to believe in your heart and speak with your mouth). And take the helmet of salvation (renewed mind in My Word as a new creation in Christ), and the Sword of the Spirit, which is My Word in your mouth. Ephesians 6:13-17,
And be careful not to take detours off redemption ground and the highway of holiness into enemy territory and strongholds. By that I mean, stay away from sin and places of sin. This was the cause of the downfall of Samson and his captivity by the enemy that cut his life short. He gave his strength to a prostitute of the enemy. He let himself fall into temptation. Pray that you not be put to the test, for the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world. 1 Peter 5:8-9.
And stay standing. The devil will try to make you bow down to him, just as he did to Jesus. But if you bow, you will burn. If you refuse to bow you will walk right through the fire with no harm, you won’t even smell that smoke. Remember Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego? They had their armor on and My Son came to lead them through that fire. For it is written: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you.” Isaiah 43:1-2.
When Nehemiah and the men with him were rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem the enemy was waiting to attack, so night and day they stayed dressed and ready and carried a sword in one hand and the tools to rebuild the wall with the other. I want you to be that alert at all times as well to the tactics and ambushes of Satan and his demons, never let them catch you off guard and tear down your building project before it is completed. You want your full reward.
And you can always win if you understand this: You already have the victory in Christ Jesus. I have given you the Kingdom and all that is in it with pleasure. In Christ, I have freely given you all things needed for life and godliness. You will never run out or be in lack. The devil will try to dissuade you and tell you that you do not you already have your healing, your provision, your righteousness, and your forgiveness. He will tell you that you are the opposite and I am withholding these things from you and led you out here to die in the wilderness of life. He will turn you into a beggar instead of a believer, a coward instead of conqueror, and a complainer instead of a worshipper. And that means no faith for who you are and what you already have in your heavenly account. And if he can keep you there, he knows he has won and can carry off the spoils of your life.
Do not put up with that. Enforce your victory by praise and thanksgiving as you proclaim that I have healed you! I have provided for your needs! I have forgiven you of all your sins and remember them no more! And I could go on and on. For many are My magnificent promises and they are al YES to you in Christ Jesus your Lord.
But never underestimate your adversary. The devil is not a joke, he is pure evil. And he is crafty. If you let him operate in the flesh realm and try to conquer him there, I warn you that he took down Adam and Eve, two perfectly sinless people, and that gave him easy access to their corrupted descendants. He took down Job for a time, Samson, Saul, and even David at one point, but he could not get at Jesus at all, Jesus gave him NO PLACE. And Peter, Paul, Mary, John and multitudes of others have learned the secret in Jesus of living by the Word and the devil cannot touch them. But they all had one thing in common besides the Word. Do you know what that is? You need it to win. THEY HAD NO FEAR OF DEATH. You cannot win until you are fearless of death, and that is the last enemy that will go under My Son’s feet. But even now, you have as Lord the one who is the Resurrection and the Life, and Jesus explained this to you, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die.” John 11:25-26. Jesus Himself took on flesh and blood, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives. Hebrews 2:14-15. And how do I tell you that you overcome your accuser, the devil? You overcome him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the Word of your testimony, and you do not draw back just to hold on to your earthly existence in this world even when faced with death. Revelation 12:11. You have no fear of death, for you know, like Stephen saw, that absent from the body you are present with Me. It is that close. On waking you will find fullness of joy in My presence and the delights at My right hand forever.
My apostle Peter was scared of death, so scared he denied Christ. But after I raised Jesus from the dead and Peter saw that death could not hold him down, he had no fear of death. He slept peacefully even in the prison was he was scheduled to die the next day. He actually was looking forward to his departure from this life to see his beloved Master again, the One who had forgiven him everything and still made him head of his church community.
Paul had no fear of death. He had seen Jesus, seen Heaven, and talked continually with Me. He said life or death made no difference to him, although Heaven was better than being in the world, but he knew that in life and death he was Mine and I would keep him with Me.
You only fear death if you are not sure there is a blessed place where you belong to go to when you die or if you are not sure if you are going there due to your sins. My risen Son is the answer to both these fears. He is preparing a place for you and coming back to take you with Him that you may be where He is and in Him all your sins have been removed from you and borne by Him. He took the punishment for you to save you from the wrath. You are holy, blameless and Heaven bound. You have blessed assurance. Do not let the devil put you in fear of the things to come. I am with you always. Lean on Me.
But never let him pull you off your course or you will not make the finish line and you will lose your reward.
I love you. Be carful how you live. Be careful how you are building your life. Make sure it is on the foundation of Christ and that you are building with gold (righteousness), silver (redemption), and precious jewels (the gifts of the Holy Spirit) and fight the good fight of faith to enforce your rights to all My benefits. Psalm103:1-5. Keep standing.