The Unseen War / Week 1 / Prepare to Fight the Right Enemy
Be Prepared to Fight the Right Enemy Eph 6:10-13 April 11 I. Introduction: A. Many years ago Kim and I attended a seminar for pastors and their wives regarding burnout and handling stress in the ministry. It was led by a medical doctor and a pastor. 1. The medical doctor opened up the 1st session with a comment that caught me off guard coming from someone from the medical field. 2. In essence he said “there is an invisible intelligent organized army out there whose sole desire is to destroy us. We have to expect it, we must recognize it, we must be prepared!” Dr. Richard Swenson 3. Did you ever stop to think that you have an invisible intelligent organized army of supernatural evil beings whose sole goal is to destroy you? 4. It’s a war for your soul and a war for your marriage and family, church and nation! 5. It is time for us to wake up from the illusion that being a Christian is like going to a church picnic or a Christian concert but rather it is a war! B. And God warned us about this many, many years ago in Eph 6! Please turn to Eph 6:10-13. 1. Watch for the heart of what God is telling us in this passage which also will become the heart of my message this morning: be prepared to fight the right enemy! 2. Watch for this as I read. • Let’s start by talking about … II. Fighting the right enemy A. Listen again to11b-12 as to who our battle is with. 1. Satan and his army of invisible spiritual angels – called demons. 2. He classifies 4 different kinds of demons here – rulers, powers, world forces of this darkness and spiritual forces of wickedness. 3. To summarize, they are demons, who are wicked and relate to darkness that have some particular role in influencing the activities of human beings. B. And they use schemes to accomplish their purposes! 11c 1. The word schemes shows us that Satan has a strategy to take us down. He uses a method, a technique, he tricks us and deceives us in order to ambush or ensnare us! 2. They want us to take the bait they use to get us to sin so we will drink poison in the Kool aid resulting in the destruction that sin brings upon ourselves and others around us! C. Finally note who the battle is not with. Read 11a 1. That is why I am calling this section fight the right enemy because so many of us think the fight is with other people, flesh and blood, or even with our own flesh and blood, but we are only the pawns – Satan only uses others to further his purposes, he is the real source. 2. Satan’s primary camouflage is other people! Repeat a) And if we do not recognize that and fight with the right enemy we will end up fighting with other people. b) Someone said “snakes do not hiss anymore, they call you babe, bro or friend. D. So there are 2 key implications to this: 1. If I do not learn to recognize and deal with the source/root problem, Satan; he will be glad to feed me his resources/fruits/Kool aid all day long or even more so all lifelong to keep me in defeat and frustration dealing with the fruits one at a time rather than the root problem Satan himself 2. If the one I am ultimately wrestling with is not flesh and blood but spiritual, then I am going to need spiritual weapons to deal with him! • And my next point and the whole series is designed to address this, and that is … III. Be prepared to fight! A. We need to put on the full armor so we will be “prepared” to fight!!!! And we need to be prepared to “fight!!!!” 1. I think one mistake I often make is thinking if I put on the armor then I will avoid Satan’s schemes and he will just pass me by because he sees I have the armor on. B. Note 1. V11 says I need to put on the armor so that I can stand firm against his schemes. – That means his evil and deceitful schemes are going to come my way and the only way I will be able to stand is by having on the armor. 2. V13 says I need to take up the armor so I can resist in the evil day when he does attack me. Resisting means I need to actively oppose that wicked and dark spiritual pressure or power that is coming against me. • “Finally” let’s look at the word at the start of this verse: IV. Finally A. Read 10a. B. This word is very clear that it is not a final thought in a series of unrelated ideas but rather this word indicates that it is the rest of the whole. 1. It directly relates to and completes everything we have learned in the book of Ephesians! What we need to know about our position in Christ and our walk with Christ and yes even in our marriages, parenting and daily work in Eph 5:22-6:9 2. By the way, we will be dealing with marriage and parenting from Ephesians as our summer series this year. C. Position in Christ – Satan, the father of lies will continuously lie to you about who you are at the core of your being! 1. Convincing you that you are still just a sinner saved by grace rather than a brand new creature who has been totally transformed by God’s grace into a saint! 2. As the accuser of the brethren he will constantly point out your failures and inconsistencies and say to you “see this is who you really are!” 3. Or he will work to get us to focus on our performance and activities as a believer to get the blessing God has given us and the victory over Satan in Christ rather than living your life as one who already has the blessings and victory over Satan. D. Walk with Christ – Satan as the tempter will constantly be putting temptations in front of us to side track us from our walk with the Lord. 1. And those temptations can range all the way from pornography to people pleasing and everything in between! 2. He wants to frustrate us, control us and ruin us and he will use anything and anyone in this world system to get us to bite the bait and drink the poisonous Kool aid. E. Marriage and family – God’s most precious gift of a mate or child and for those of you not married – a close friend often becomes the closest, most intimate and fiercest battles we can have. 1. And so often Satan is skillful at causing us to think that our real enemy is that person who lives so close to us who is made of flesh and blood. 2. Young parents you will learn over time that one of the great parenting skills will be learning how to wrestle with Satan for the sake of your children! F. This world - and as we learned in Eph 2 Satan is the prince of this world and is currently influencing the sons of disobedience. We do not have to look far to see that in the time and nation we are living in. 1. Like never before we need to recognize who the real and ultimate enemy is who is using politicians, entertainers, media, etc. as his pawns. 2. And there are no people in this country positioned better than Christians to be part of the real answer when we recognize who the real enemy is and use the spiritual weapons we have! G. We need to be prepared! And we need to be prepared to fight and we need to fight the right enemy. 1. Today was the introduction – the next 6-7 weeks will be the rest of the sermon!
Duration: 36 min