A L O O K I N T O T H E A P O S T L E ' S H E A R T
Do you ever feel like every day is a struggle? Are you ever worn out by the hardships, demands, and cares of each week? Don’t worry! You’re not alone. The Bible clearly tells us that we’re in a war each and every day. While you may think that it’s a war against life circumstances, bills, fighting siblings, and opposing political forces, the truth is that we’re in a spiritual war not a physical one. Our enemies are not our parents, siblings, in-laws, landlords, or annoying co-workers, but rather spiritual forces of evil and Satan’s cohorts. As Ephesians 6:12 reminds us:
“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.”
With terms like “cosmic powers” and “spiritual forces of evil,” we may think that this is a script from some sort of scary action movie, but the truth of the matter is that this is reality. This is real life. This is our daily struggle.
So if you’re feeling that strain--the weariness, the wear and tear--of daily life in a sinful world, then good! You’re feeling the effects of our divine war—a war not against the physical world but against the spiritual. You’re feeling battle worn and possibly battle scarred.
While it may be scary to realize that your next door neighbor is not the enemy and that the Prince of darkness is, there is hope. For we are not in this battle alone, but are soldiers in a divine war, meaning that Jesus is the leading General and gives us direction, guidance, and divine power so that we can win this battle.
This is where II Corinthians comes in. Paul is trying to explain to the Corinthians that, while they were gullible and fell to the smooth speaking of false teachers, Paul and his helpers were waging war on their behalf. And by the grace of God, they won. Why? Because the weapons they used had the power to destroy strongholds. As Paul shares in II Corinthians 10:3-4:
“For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds.”
These verses are pretty well-known and familiar, but did you read it carefully? Did you catch all that Paul was saying? He, and his co-workers, had divine power to destroy strongholds. Those are some formidable weapons! And the exciting thing is that the same weapons Paul had access to are also available to us. They are not exclusively for first-century Christians or capital A apostles. Why? Because we are in the same divine war and, if we’re fighting on Jesus’ side, He has given us the same weapons of warfare that have divine power to destroy strongholds.
Destroy strongholds. Or as some translations read, demolish strongholds. That gives a much better visual picture. Think about a bulldozer leveling an old building. The Greek word for destroy literally means “demolition, extinction, destruction, pulling down.” Are you starting to get the picture? In Christ, we have divine tools and power to utterly demolish, eradicate, destroy, and obliterate Satan’s strongholds. How encouraging is that?!
Do you want to experience victory? Are you tired of the various strongholds Satan has in your life? Would you like to destroy them?
God wants us to experience victory. He’s given us His armor which not only protects us while we wage this divine war, but will also help us defeat the enemy. (For a refresher on the Armor of God, read Ephesians 6.) These weapons of our warfare are backed by divine power, so that if we’re fighting for the right things and are on God’s side, we can destroy the enemy and break down those strongholds.
Therefore, let us always remember that we are in a divine war and be careful to wear our spiritual armor daily so that we may not become causalities. And let us not forget the weapons God has given us, so that we can not only be survivors of this spiritual war, but may also be victors since we have divine power to demolish strongholds. So let’s use them!
Watch out Satan and all your cohorts, the army of Jesus Christ is gearing up to demolish your strongholds in Jesus’ name!
“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.”