Life is a battlefield. Each day we are confronted with different battles like battles over health, work, addiction, temptation, finances, and relationships. One thing we all desire more than anything else is to know how to win our battles on the battlefield of life.
THE CATEGORIES OF BATTLES
Understanding your battles is as important as knowing how to win these battles on the battlefield of life. The battles of life come mostly in 3 categories:
- THE BATTLE AGAINST THE FLESH: These are the battles you fight with yourself. It is the battle with the enemy within you. Examples of such battles include fear, doubt, addiction, anxiety, temptations, temperaments, bad habits, etc.
- THE BATTLE AGAINST THE WORLD: These are the battles against the world system and the people in the world. It is the battle with the enemy around us. Like battles at your workplace, battle with finances, battle with your relationship with other people, battles with the economy, etc.
- THE BATTLE AGAINST UNFORSEEN FORCES: These are battles that are not expected or anticipated like the death of a loved one, ill health, accidents, natural disasters, etc.
The first step to winning your battles on the battlefield of life is to understand that the underlying cause of ‘’ALL’’ your battles mentioned in the 3 categories above is the ‘’DEVIL’’.
The Devil is the root cause of all our battles and he chooses to stage them in different forms just like the categories stated above. He is the one we battle against.
OH REALLY! … What about the annoying colleague or neighbor that steps on my last nerves and offends me all the time. I do not see the devil’s face when they offend me…is that also the devil?
Or the wicked boss that maltreats me, how about when I lost my job, or my addiction to masturbation and pornography, or the loss of my child, the struggle in my marriage and all the bad things that are happening to me. Are they all caused by the devil?
These are common questions someone may ask and my answer to all these questions are ‘’ YES THEY ARE ALL CAUSED BY THE DEVIL’’.
For the bible says in Ephesians 6:12 ‘’for we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in heavenly places’’ (KJV).
THE WEAPONS FOR THE BATTLES OF LIFE
Whether you win life’s battles or you struggle with them is a function of the weapons you use.
Often times people including myself tend to fight with the wrong weapon, for instance, we fight our battles with our own strength and understanding.
We fight our battles with weapons like vengeance, unforgiveness, malice, anger, self-defeat, wicked plots and schemes, envy and jealousy, unrighteousness and physical weapons like guns, knife, stones, etc.
The weapons for our battles have been clearly made known to us in 2 Corinthians 10:4 which says:
‘’The weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood]. Our weapons are divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses’’ (AMP).
Also in the book of Ephesians 6: 11 and 13 we have been told to put on the Full Armor of God so that we can take our stand against the devil’s schemes when the days of evil come.
Our weaponry for overcoming in the battlefield of life is the ‘’FULL ARMOR OF GOD’’. Now let’s look at this Armor of God and what it entails.
UNDERSTANDING AND USING THE FULL ARMOUR OF GOD
Just as soldiers put on their Armor while going into battle, we as Christians are also expected to put on our Armor while in battle with the Devil.
The Armor we put on is not a physical Armor but the supernatural Armor of God which has been clearly described in Ephesians 6: 11-18 to include:
- THE BELT OF TRUTH
The belt of truth protects us against the lies and the deceptions of the devil. To secure this weapon around our waist we must acknowledge and draw closer to the source of truth which is Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:16).
The devil is very cunning and very good at twisting the truth just to deceive us and take us further away from God and our divine purpose. He is described as the Father of lies (John 8:44).
A good example is how Eve was deceived to eat the forbidden fruit in Genesis Chapter 3 where the devil told her if she ate the fruit she would be as wise as God and that was why they were prevented from even touching the Fruit.
Putting on the belt of truth involves spending time with God and His Word which helps us to know who God really is and how powerful he is as against the lies the devil tries to make us believe.
We also get to know the nature of God and his divine plans for our lives.
The weapon of truth is so important because helps to hold the other weapons together. When we know the truth about who we are in Christ and the authority and power God has given us, we become confident and sure of the effectiveness of all the other weapons. (See Luke 10:19).
To use the belt of truth as a weapon you must be prepared to stand for the truth at all times even if it would cost you. It implies always speaking the truth in love and believing the truth. You must also be able to take corrections spoken in truth.
2. THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
Here, righteousness means to be in right standing with God and it is only Jesus that can make us right with God. (See 2 Corinthians 5:21).
This righteousness came to us all through death and resurrection Of Jesus Christ and you claim it the moment you repent from your sins and give your life to him.
Once we claim the righteousness of God We need to constantly spend time with God and study his word to maintain this righteousness.
We must understand that we do not attain righteousness just by Good deeds or works. Righteousness is attained by obeying God’s word and walking in his ways alongside our good works.
When we are in a battle with the devil, he tries to use our most vulnerable parts against us like an intense temptation we always fall for, or an addiction or our weaknesses generally.
It is in such situations we need to use the breastplate of righteousness by submitting ourselves to God and resisting the devil.
When we resist the devil he would flee from us. We get the strength to resist the devil from turning to God. See (James 4:7).
To successfully use the weapon of righteousness we must guard our heart with all diligence and deliberately avoid anything or anyone that would make you compromise your relationship and your right standing with God.
3.THE SHOES OF THE GOSPEL OF PEACE
The importance of this weapon is for you to develop the kind of peace that only God can give (the peace that surpasses all understanding) during the time of battles.
Being at peace helps you to stand firm even when the devil attacks you with his evil schemes like the death of loved one, betrayal from family or friends, financial difficulties, job security, ill health, etc.
During Jesus’s lifetime on earth, He exhibited great peace at all times. For instance, during the storms when the disciples were in a panic, Jesus was fast asleep because he knew the truth of who he was and the authority he possessed.
Knowing who you and whose you are, gives you the power and the ability to be at peace at all times and God wants us to exhibit the kind of peace Jesus exhibited during your time of troubles.
The second aspect of the weapon of peace is to live peacefully with everyone as much as you can. I know this might come across as almost impossible or difficult because no matter how much you try, some people are bound to cause strive and disrupt peace.
Romans 12:18 says ‘’if it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone (NIV).
We are encouraged to live in peace with one another because the devil also thrives where there is strife. In fact, strife is one of the greatest weapons the devil uses is to disrupt our lives and deny us from achieving our purpose in life.
Jesus Christ is the prince of peace and through him we can have access to the peace that God gives which surpasses all understanding. (See Isaiah 9:6 and Philippians 4:7).
Also through spending time with God, you develop his nature and the ability to live peacefully with others.
4. THE SHIELD OF FAITH
The importance of the shield of faith is to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the devil such as doubt and unbelief, fear and anxiety, hopelessness and trials of every kind.
”Now Faith is the confidence in what we hope for and the assurance about what we do not see’’ (Hebrews 11:1 NIV).
To have faith is to totally trust and depend on God to deliver you from the enemy, to keep you safe and to bring to pass all the promises and the plans he has for your life.
Sometimes the devil brings doubts and unbelief through the circumstances in our lives at a present time. He uses this to shift us away from our firm ground into sinking sands. It is in such times we are to take up our shield of faith and stand our grounds.
I must say this is one of my best weapons against the devil. I have been through some troubling times recently.
It just seemed like everything wrong was happening to me at the same time and I was losing everything. Yet, I was committed to spending time with God in prayers and in studying his word. This gave me the ability to take up my shield of faith.
Faith was the only thing left for me to hold on to and it changed everything.
I was able to trust and depend completely on God to save and deliver me from all my troubles which he did in due time.
To walk in faith takes courage. It is like taking a risk but I can assure you it is one risk that pays off big time.
To gain access and to activate all the weapons being discussed, you must be committed to spending time with God and walking in his ways.
5.THE HELMET OF SALVATION
We receive salvation from confessing our sins and accepting Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and savior.
After receiving salvation we are meant to work out our salvation. This involves believing the word of God, walking in righteousness and in truth and putting our minds on the things of God.
When we set our minds on the things of God we can put off and withstand every evil thought that the devil tries to put in our head.
When we put on the helmet of salvation, we are constantly reminded of who we are and whose we are.
Romans 12:2 says ‘’ do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is…his good, pleasing and perfect will’’ (NIV).
2 Corinthians 10:5 also says ‘’we demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ’’ (NIV).
Being saved is the first step to accessing and receiving anything from God. If you have not received the salvation of Christ, I really encourage you to do so. All it takes is a simple sincere prayer. You can pray the following prayer out loud:
‘’Lord Jesus, today I come before you to confess all of my sins and to accept you as my Lord and personal savior. I believe that you died on the cross that I may be saved. So today I sincerely ask that you take over my life and lead me in the path of righteousness. In Jesus Name I Pray, Amen.’’
Now that you have received Christ, you need to put conscious effort to work out your salvation and maintain a close relationship with God by praying, studying and meditating on his word. The lord would give you the grace to do it once you ask him to help you daily.
6.THE SWORD OF THE SPIRIT WHICH IS THE WORD OF GOD
The word of God is one of the most powerful weapons against the devil. It has all that we need to win our battles.
All the weapons mentioned in this article are embedded in the Word of God.
Through the word of God, we discover the truth of who we are in Christ. The word of God is not just mere written words, they are filled with power to overcome the powers of wickedness.
God’s word is also filled with his transformation power that enables you to walk in truth, in faith, in peace, and in righteousness.
Having knowledge of the word of God helps you know the exact response or weapon to use against the devil when he attacks. A clear example is how Jesus used the word of God when he was tempted by the devil in the wilderness. All Jesus used to put the devil off was the written word. (see Luke 4:1-13).
It is important to spend time studying God’s word and while at it, you should pray for God to reveal himself to you through his word and to give you insight on how to apply his word.
7. SPIRIT-FILLED PRAYERS
Here we are told to pray in the spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. Ephesians 6:18.
Praying in the spirit is distinct from praying in tongues. If you have the gift of praying in tongues, you can pray in tongues while praying in the spirit.
praying in the Spirit is relying on the Holy Spirit in prayer. It is a prayer with divine help and assistance from the Holy Spirit.
Romans 8:26 says ‘’In the same way the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express’’ (NIV).
Praying in the spirit is an important weapon against the devil because it is a perfect prayer made to God through the help of the Holy Spirit who knows the mind of God and who knows what we actually need to pray about. it is also a prayer the devil does not have access to or understand.
The Armor of God works together in one accord, no one is more important than the other.
Often people concentrate on using one or two weapons against the devil without the complete Armor of God.
You find someone filled with unforgiveness and strife praying and fasting for victory over a particular battle without success because the devil has held unto that strife and unforgiveness to deny them victory.
Lastly but also very important is the fact that when you have done all that you know how to do by putting on God’s Armor and doing your very best but victory is yet to come, I encourage you to ”REST”.
Resting is also a weapon for our warfare. It is backing out completely and letting God totally take over. Resting is waiting for God’s appointed time for victory without any doubts or fear because victory will surely come in due time.
I pray we all receive the grace to put on the Full Armor of God at all times to be able to have continuous and consistent victory in the battlefield of life.