And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen. Romans 16:20 (NKJV)
Almost a year ago I wrote the devotion “Wrestling with Abba Father,” ironically published exactly one week before we left our home forever due to a mold outbreak, not knowing I’d do more wrestling in the coming year than ever before! I have to say that when you spend several hours a day on the mat wrestling for months on end, you learn more about fighting the good fight of faith!
I haven’t written much about spiritual warfare in My TEA CUPP devotions in the past, focusing more on other parts of prayer. But as our world continues its moral decline and trouble of all kinds abound for God’s children, it is important that we put on the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6:11) and battle the enemy in prayer. Though Jacob wrestled with the Angel of God, our spiritual warfare is not against the Father, but rather in the name of Jesus we fight against evil forces of wickedness, Satan and his fallen angels with names like Leviathan, Legion, Baal and many others. Paul tells us, “We do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places (Ephesians 6:12).
Our Lord Jesus knew all about spiritual warfare. Right after He was baptized, the Holy Spirit took Jesus into the wilderness where He fasted for 40 days. At the end of those 40 days, Satan came to tempt Jesus. But Jesus did not give in to the devil’s tactics. He fought back with the Word of God, using the Sword of the Spirit to defend Himself (read Matthew 4:1-11). When Satan showed up again in the doubts of Peter, Jesus proclaimed, “Get behind Me, Satan!” ordering the devil away with His words (Matthew 16:21-23).
As I was reading the familiar story of David and Goliath a few weeks ago, I saw how it is a perfect example of using spiritual warfare in our prayers (1 Samuel 17). You all know the story of how David gathered the five stones to fight the giant Goliath for mocking the God of Israel. With only one stone, David won the battle, perhaps because the battle had already been won in prayer. Let’s look at what steps we must to do to be victorious like David in his spiritual battle over God’s enemy:
- We pray (Psalm 27)
- We obey our Father (1 Samuel 17:17-20)
- We practice on a lion and a bear (1 Samuel 17:34-37)
- We size up the situation and ask permission (1 Samuel 17:20-30)
- We gather our stones (1 Samuel 17:40)
- We fight with the Word of God (1 Samuel 17:45-47)
- We claim the victory! (1 Samuel 17:48-51)
I feel like I’ve been practicing on the lion and the bear this past year as we battled in prayer for healing and a home. I’ve progressed to gathering my stones and fighting the enemy with the Word of God. What does this look like? When I was on the verge of completing my third book, More TEA CUPP Prayers, I gathered my five stones. I knew the enemy did not want me to finish this as he had used every tactic to try to knock me out, from sickness to despair. So, on my final afternoon of writing, I wrote five promises from God’s Word in my prayer journal. These were my five stones to throw at the enemy if he came along during my writing. I wrote that day, Dearest Jesus, be with me to press on and finish More TEA CUPP! I claim these five stones of promise against Goliath in Your Name, Yeshua!
- No weapon formed against me shall prosper (see Isaiah 54:17).
- He who is in me is greater than he who is in the world (see 1 John 4:4).
- He who began a good work in me will be faithful to complete it until the day of Jesus Christ (see Philippians 1:6).
- I shall not die but live to declare the works of the Lord (see Psalm 118:17).
- He shall give His angels charge over me to keep me in all His ways (see Psalm 91:11).
I also rebuked, in the Name of Yeshua Messiah, the “prince of the power of the air” from messing with the internet and computer (Ephesians 2:2)! And I’m delighted to say that day was a victory for God’s side as More TEA CUPP Prayers is now at the publisher! HalleluYAH! God be praised!
As I continued reading 1 Samuel, I remembered again David and Goliath. I noticed that David didn’t assume his first victory would guarantee the next victory over the enemy. When he came to battle again, David first …inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I go and attack these Philistines?” And the Lord said to David, “Go and attack the Philistines, and save Keilah.” (1 Samuel 23:2). That is a lesson for us, too: Keep asking the Father before battling the enemy, or we might become like the people in Acts who cast out demons in Jesus’ name and were attacked (see Acts 19).
Paul tell us, “for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5). This reminds me of 2 Samuel 17:13 when Hushai gave advice to Absolom, saying they would use ropes to pull the city down into the river. That’s what we do with our prayers! Our prayers are like ropes, pulling the evil strongholds into the river! Dear one, you can do this! Stay in God’s Word, claim His promises, always keep on His armor as you pray and go through your days.
Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called and have confessed the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:12 (NKJV)
Today’s TEA CUPP: Read 1 Samuel 17. Now it’s your turn. Pick your five Bible verse “stones” to have ready for the next spiritual battle. Put on the whole armor of God and stand! Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:57)!
…be valiant for me, and fight the Lord’s battles. 1 Samuel 18:17 (NKJV)
…the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s... 1 Samuel 17:47 (NKJV)
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Ephesians 6:11 (NKJV)
But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. 1 Thessalonians 5:8 (NKJV)
Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified. 1 Corinthians 9:26-27 (NKJV)
This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you may wage the good warfare. 1 Timothy 1:18 (NKJV)
Blessed be the Lord my Rock,
Who trains my hands for war,
And my fingers for battle. Psalm 144:1 (NKJV)
Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.