Note: G.N.B = Good News Bible, Today's English Version.
N.K.J. = New King James Version.
"For we are not fighting against human beings but against the wicked spiritual forces in the heavenly world, the rulers, authorities, and cosmic powers of this dark age" (Ephesians 6:12; G.N.B.).
"A soldier on active duty wants to please his commanding officer and does not get mixed up in the affairs civilian life" (2nd Timothy 2:4; G.N.B.).
Born again Christians are at war; they are battling spiritual forces! Ever since Lucifer lost his exalted heavenly position and was cast from heaven due to his pride and rebellion against God, he has been in a fury against the people of God. With lies and deceit he endeavors to frustrate the ultimate plan of God for them.
Lucifer's sinister subversion of humanity began in the Garden of Eden with the First Couple. The outcome of that subversion we call, "The Fall" (Genesis 2 & 3). A fall it was indeed! The First Couple plummeted from the intimate fellowship they enjoyed with their Creator to that of a spiritual obscurity that even now continues to veil unredeemed humanity from Him. It appeared Lucifer had achieved his purpose to defeat God's plan for mankind. God, however, predicted the evil one's defeat at the hands of the very race he subverted. "I will put enmity between you and the women, And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, And you shall bruise His heal" (Genesis 3:15 (N.K.J).
It has been said that God's time clock never runs slow. That maxim applies to the fulfillment of God's prediction to Lucifer. "But when the right time finally came, God sent his own Son. He came as the son of a human mother and lived under the Jewish Law, to redeem those who were under the Law, so that we might become God's sons" (Galatians 4:4; G.N.B.). Understanding that his subversion of the First Couple did not necessarily indicate the defeat of God's plan, Lucifer continued his hellish crusade by seeking the destruction the incarnate Savior. The first attempt came at the hand of an envious king named Herod. This attempt was prevented when Mary's espoused husband, Joseph, received an angelic warning to escape into Egypt until the danger was over. He did so, returning when he was assured the danger was over.
During His earthly ministry, the Lord Jesus received several threats against His life. All failed until the time was right. He was crucified, but not without voluntarily laying down His life. At the trial of Jesus, "Pilot said to [the chief priests] 'You take him, then, and crucify him. I find no reason to condemn him.' The crowd answered back, 'We have a law that says he ought to die, because he claimed to be the Son of God.'
"When pilot heard this, he was even more afraid. He went back into the palace and asked Jesus, 'Where do you come from?' But Jesus did not answer. Pilot said to him, 'You will not speak to me? Remember I have the authority to set you free and also to have you crucified.' Jesus answered, 'You have authority over me only because it was given to you by God. So the man who handed me to you is guilty of a worse sin'. . . They crucified him . . . Jesus knew that by now everything had been completed . . . Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit" (John 19: 8-29; G.N.B.).
The cross and the subsequent resurrection of Jesus Christ was Lucifer's unqualified defeat. In our spiritual battles we should be deeply comforted by this truth, for according to the Apostle Paul, we cannot be defeated. "If God is for us, who can be against us? Certainly not God, who did not even keep back his own Son, but offered him for us all! He gave us his Son-will he not also give us all things? Who will accuse God's chosen people? God himself declares them not guilty! Who will then condemn them? Not Christ Jesus, who died, or rather who was raised to life and is at the right hand of God, pleading with him for us. Who, then, can separate us from the love of Christ? Can trouble do it, or hardship or persecution or hunger or poverty or danger or death? . . . No, in all these things we have complete victory through him who loved us. For I am certain that nothing can separate us from his love: neither death nor life, neither angels nor other heavenly rulers or powers, neither the world above nor the world below-there is nothing in all creation that will ever be able to separate us from the love of God which is ours through Christ Jesus our Lord."
This author believes that warrior angels, assigned to various nations, battle wicked spirit in the unseen world in answer to the prayers of God's people. The Prophet Daniel verified this when the angel Gabriel appeared to him with the following message. "Daniel, don't be afraid. God has heard your prayers ever since the first day you decided to humble yourself in order to gain understanding. I have come in answer to your prayer. The angel of the prince of Persia opposed me for twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief angels, came to help me, because I had been left alone in Persia. I have come to make you understand what will happen to your people in the future . . ." (Daniel 10:12-14; G.N.B.).
This author recalls being told by someone, "I always pray only one time for anything I need."
"But suppose you don't receive it that one time?" I inquired.
"Well, that means God doesn't want me to have it."
What would the results been had Daniel not prayed until the answer came? Believers must understand that prayer is one of our weapons against Lucifer. Through prayer we assist in preventing him from blocking the answers to our request. When this author presents a request before God, he continues making the request until the answer comes, or until the Holy Spirit defiantly tells him the response is "no." We should remember there are three responses to our requests: Yes, no and wait. Until we are lead otherwise, we should continue to present a particular request to the Lord.
The Apostle, Paul apparently included prayer among the items in the armor of God. "So put on God's armor now! Then when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist the enemy's attacks; and after fighting to the end, you will still hold your ground. Stand ready, with truth as a belt tight around your waist, with righteousness as your breastplate, and as your shoes the readiness to announce the Good News of peace. At all times carry faith as your shield; for with it you will be able to put out all the burning arrows shot by the Evil One. And accept salvation as a helmet, and the word of God as the sword which the Spirit gives you. Do all this in prayer, asking for God's help. Pray on every occasion as the Spirit leads. For this reason keep alert and never give up; pray always for God's people (Ephesians 6:14-18; G.N.B).
True, we are in a spiritual warfare, but never give up; our victory has been foreordained by God! Yes, never give up; our victory is certain though that warfare continues until we either receive our promotion to glory or Christ returns to take us where He is! Absolutely do not surrender or compromise; for we are more than conquerors through Jesus Christ who loves us! Be assured that we are not merely conquerors; we are more than conquerors and we shall reign with Him, for He is Lord!