If you follow The Porch you know we now have weekly online Bible Studies at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/the-porch. If you don’t then come join us every Wednesday night at 7:30 pm Eastern.
We also have weekly Sunday night show, Reflections In The Dark, 7 pm Eastern where go deeper into the supernatural shadows.
What I have found from both shows and those who attend them is that “Spiritual Warfare” is a lost concept on the church of today. Even those churches that should be predisposed to this teaching (i.e. Charismatic, Pentecostal, Spirit Filled) are lack in the warning and preparing the flock for the prophesied End Times.
When I got saved in October of 1988 at the old Christian Heritage Church in Tallahassee, Florida under its former Pastor, Robert A. Shelley, we were spoiled by the knowledge and scriptural feedings given to us. The spiritual food that Pastor Shelley fed us was a banquet that fed everyone from the newest to the oldest Believer. How much food you had was up to you. Understanding the authority given to us in the Lord and how to use the weapons of our warfare was a regular part of that diet. And, many fed willingly at the table.
This period of time was at the height of the spiritual warfare movement in the church. Unfortunately, the enemy played off of our enthusiasm and intensity by inspiring error and excess. By 1995, when I moved away from Tallahassee, the spiritual warfare movement had imploded on itself and lay in ruins. Were mistakes made? Yes. In the zeal to serve the Lord many misguided souls ran to a front line they had no business being on. The had ignored the admonition of the scriptures of James 4:1-6 preceded the promise that the devil would flee from you indicating that the success of your resistance was equal to the success of your walking correctly with the Lord. That’s why to this day I do not recommend or encourage anyone to do what I do or what SRT does without considering the cost and knowing the personal requirements.
Lives were destroyed, churches were destroyed and this allowed those who had no heart or stomach for the warfare in the first place to gloat and write books that held an even greater error then the mistakes made by misguided spiritual emphasis and ignorance of the enemy we faced.
That error? That there was no warfare, that we could stop warring at all and that the enemy had no power.
1 Peter 5:8-10 ( NKJV )8Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. 9Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. 10But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.
Devour (gulp entire (literally or figuratively):—devour, drown, swallow up)?
Resist (to stand against, that is, oppose:—resist, withstand)?
The same sufferings are experienced by others and you will suffer for a while?
Sounds like warfare to me.
Ephesians 6:10-12 (Amplified Bible) 10In conclusion, be strong in the Lord [be empowered through your union with Him]; draw your strength from Him [that strength which His boundless might provides]. 11Put on God’s whole armor [the armor of a heavy-armed soldier which God supplies], that you may be able successfully to stand up against [all] the strategies and the deceits of the devil. 12For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere.
The “wrestling” of the Apostles Paul’s day was Greek style of Olympics wrestling from his era. It was up close, physical and rough. There were no pads or coverings. There was nothing pretty or comfortable about it.
Who are we wrestling with? The four levels of power pertaining to the fallen angels (Genesis Chapter 6) and the demonic spirits of their hybrid offspring wiped out in the Flood.
Ephesians 6:13-18 (Amplified Bible) 13Therefore put on God’s complete armor, that you may be able to resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place]. 14Stand therefore [hold your ground], having tightened the belt of truth around your loins and having put on the breastplate of integrity and of moral rectitude and right standing with God, 15And having shod your feet in preparation [to face the enemy with the firm-footed stability, the promptness, and the readiness produced by the good news] of the Gospel of peace. 16Lift up over all the [covering] shield of saving faith, upon which you can quench all the flaming missiles of the wicked [one]. 17And take the helmet of salvation and the sword that the Spirit wields, which is the Word of God. 18Pray at all times (on every occasion, in every season) in the Spirit, with all [manner of] prayer and entreaty. To that end keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance, interceding in behalf of all the saints (God’s consecrated people).
Does any of that scriptural exposition indicate peaceful inactivity?
We were warned by the Lord Himself of the turbulent times we are in and the fact that they would replicate the Days of Noah (Matthew 24:37) and although there are many who diminish the meaning of this warning it indicates a time of violent demonic activity. If you watch the news, spend time on the Internet or just pay attention to what is going on around you the signs of the times are all around us.
Finally, I will leave you with the warnings of the Prophet Isaiah ( a real one not just someone with a name tag and a 501c3 business):
Isaiah 60:1-3 ( NKJV )
1 Arise, shine;
For your light has come!
And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.
2 For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
And deep darkness the people;
But the Lord will arise over you,
And His glory will be seen upon you.
3 The Gentiles shall come to your light,
And kings to the brightness of your rising.
We are in those dark times and the “deep darkness” is really the same Hebrew word twice (H6205 עֲרָפֶל ʽărâphel ar-aw-fel’ ; gloom (as of a lowering sky):—gross, thick dark cloud). That’s a darkness that is twice as bad, twice as powerful and worse then what had been experienced before. If that is not a description of 2010 and the years ahead I do not know what is.
But then again, if you are one of those people who believe everything is all right, there is no enemy out there and that roaring lion Peter warned you about has no teeth, keep doing what you are doing – nothing. You can continue to follow the writings and opinions of men & women who have not seen the outside of a sanctuary or conference room in years; who have no clue of the current war or the current enemy we are being threatened by. Let me know how that works out for you.
If you are awakening from your slumber and tired of watching the destruction of loved ones, friends, families, children and all things good come to the upcoming online Bible Studies at The Porch. We are going to examine spiritual warfare as the Book of Acts church taught it, experienced it and lived it.
Either way, the Word of the Lord is clear. The teachings of His Apostles on point. And, the orders given by the Captain of the Hosts without question.
It’s your choice.
In His Service,
Richard J Grund
The Porch On Solomon’s Porch