The Sword of the Spirit
There is one piece of God's armor that in addition to being protection, is also offensive in nature. We can use this piece of armor as a weapon use to attack our enemy Satan and his demonic army. That weapon is the sword of the spirit with is the Word of God. No spiritual battle can be fought and won without our greatest weapon—the Word of God.
The word is a defensive as well as an offensive weapon. We need to speak the word, pray the Word, live the Word, and let it live in you.
To be proficient in the use of this weapon we must practice its use. We need to know it as well as a soldier knows his or her weapon. They don’t even have to think about it they just use it. That’s the way we should use our weapon, the sword of the Spirit.
Hebrews 4:12 NKJV For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
Psalms 119:105-112 NKJV Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path. I have sworn and confirmed That I will keep Your righteous judgments. I am afflicted very much; Revive me, O Lord , according to Your word. Accept, I pray, the freewill offerings of my mouth, O Lord , And teach me Your judgments. My life is continually in my hand, Yet I do not forget Your law. The wicked have laid a snare for me, Yet I have not strayed from Your precepts. Your testimonies I have taken as a heritage forever, For they are the rejoicing of my heart. I have inclined my heart to perform Your statutes Forever, to the very end.
Praise Is A Weapon
God has given us a powerful spiritual weapon. That weapon is praise.
What is praise? Praise is the expression of approval or admiration for someone of something. For Christians God is the object of our praise. Christian praise is the joyful thankfulness and adoration of God, the celebration of His goodness and grace.
Our enemy, Satan and his demons, despise our praise of God so much that they cannot even be in the presence of anyone who is actively doing that. So whenever you want the enemy to flee, praise God. It is one of our greatest weapons in the war against him.
Worship Is a Powerful Weapon Against the Enemy
Another extremely powerful weapon is praise and worship. The enemy hates your worship of God because his own greatest objective is to get you to worship him instead.
Psalms 86:9-10 NKJV All nations whom You have made Shall come and worship before You, O Lord, And shall glorify Your name. For You are great, and do wondrous things; You alone are God.
2 Kings 17:38-39 NIV Do not forget the covenant I have made with you, and do not worship other gods. Rather, worship the Lord your God; it is he who will deliver you from the hand of all your enemies.”
John 4:23-24 NKJV But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
God’s Grace Is a Weapon Against the Enemy
Grace is the unmerited favor of God. I believe that “Grace is the most important concept in the Bible, Christianity, and the world. It is most clearly expressed in the promises of God revealed in Scripture and embodied in Jesus Christ himself.”
The Greek word that’s used most in the New Testament and translated grace is charis (pronounced cars) a) objective - that which bestows or occasions pleasure, delight, or causes favorable regard.
Romans 1:5 (HCSB) 5 We have received grace and apostleship through Him to bring about the obedience of faith among all the nations, on behalf of His name,
Romans 3:24 (HCSB)24 They are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.
Romans 5:2 (HCSB)2 We have also obtained access through Him by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
Romans 12:6 (HCSB)6 According to the grace given to us, we have different gifts: If prophecy, use it according to the standard of one’s faith;
Fasting with Prayer Is a Weapon Against the Enemy
In the Bible, people fasted and prayed before they made important decisions.
Esther 4:15-16 (NKJV)15 Then Esther told them to reply to Mordecai:16 "Go, gather all the Jews who are present in Shushan, and fast for me; neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will fast likewise. And so I will go to the king, which is against the law; and if I perish, I perish!"
2 Chronicles 20:1-3 (NKJV)1 It happened after this that the people of Moab with the people of Ammon, and others with them besides the Ammonites, came to battle against Jehoshaphat.2 Then some came and told Jehoshaphat, saying, "A great multitude is coming against you from beyond the sea, from Syria; and they are in Hazazon Tamar" (which is En Gedi).3 And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the LORD, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.
Jonah 3:5-6 (NKJV)5 So the people of Nineveh believed God, proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the least of them.6 Then word came to the king of Nineveh; and he arose from his throne and laid aside his robe, covered himself with sackcloth and sat in ashes.
1 Corinthians 7:5 (NKJV)5 Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
Because spiritual warfare is continuous, we must pray continually. Fasting and prayer is a powerful weapon against the enemy. So when you need a breakthrough in any area of your life, fast and pray and see what God does in response. Some things will not happen without it.
Mark 9:24-29 (NKJV)24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, "Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!"25 When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, "Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!"26 Then the spirit cried out, convulsed him greatly, and came out of him. And he became as one dead, so that many said, "He is dead."27 But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him up, and he arose.28 And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, "Why could we not cast it out?"29 So He said to them, "This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting."
Faith Is Not Only a Shield; It Is also a Weapon
We cannot do anything without faith—especially please God.
Hebrews 11:6 NKJV But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
Having faith in God is the opposite of trusting in ourselves. Faith means being convinced that God will do as He promised, so we stop striving to do everything on our own.
Our strong faith not only serves as our protective shield, but it is also one of our powerful weapons against the enemy. We must have faith that God hears and will answer our prayers.
Mark 11:22-23 (NKJV)22 So Jesus answered and said to them, "Have faith in God.
23 For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.
3 Powerful Biblical Weapons to Banish Your Worry and Fear
By Dr. David Jeremiah
When advice columnist Ann Landers was asked if there was a common denominator among the thousands of letters she received, she replied that their great overriding theme was fear—fear of nearly everything imaginable until the problem grew, for countless readers, into a fear of life itself.
Yet Proverbs 3:25-26 commands, “Do not be afraid of sudden terror, nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes; for the Lord will be your confidence.” It seems two of the most terrible criminals live within our own hearts—the diabolical duo of worry and fear.
Worry and fear stalk us whenever we board an airplane, open a bill, visit a doctor, walk down a darkened sidewalk, or glance at the clock when our child is late for curfew. Christians aren’t exempt from worry and fear.
Judging from Scripture, God’s people seem to be tormented by the same alarms as everyone else.
Though the disciples had Jesus continually with them, they seemed constantly afraid—of storms, of crowds, of poverty, of armies, of loss of status, of the loss of their leader.
Worry is a particularly virulent form of fear. Someone said that worry is a trickle of fear that meanders through the mind until it cuts a channel into which all other thoughts drain.
Do I ever worry? Of course I do; I’ve raised four children to adulthood, and I’ve faced serious illness. That qualifies me as an expert on the subject. But for me, worry is a small town I pass through, not a place to hang my hat. It’s a momentary phase, not a lifestyle.
For many people, worry has become so ingrained in their personalities that, once the old worries are gone, they search for new ones.
That’s why fear and worry are sins.
Worry and fear doubt God’s promises, question His power, disregard His presence, and divert our hearts from His praise. John Wesley said, “I would no more worry than I would curse or swear.”
How, then, do we lock up the criminals of fear and worry? Use these three God-given weapons:
First, let your fears drive you to the Lord in prayer. The “Six Words of Wisdom for Worriers” are: Worry about nothing—pray about everything!
The Living Bible translates Philippians 4:6-7 this way: “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank Him for His answers. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand.”
Elisha Hoffman met a woman in Lebanon, Pennsylvania, whose depression seemed beyond cure. She poured out her pent-up sorrows, crying, “What shall I do? Oh, what shall I do?” Hoffman told the worried woman to take her sorrows to Jesus. “You must tell Jesus,” he said.
“Yes!” she replied, suddenly understanding. “That’s it! I must tell Jesus.” Her words echoed in Hoffman’s ears, and from that experience he wrote the hymn, “I Must Tell Jesus” with its splendid chorus:
I must tell Jesus! I must tell Jesus!
I cannot bear my burdens alone;
I must tell Jesus! I must tell Jesus!
Jesus can help me, Jesus alone.
Prayer is our primary method for telling Jesus about our worries and, in the process, of recognizing the presence of God. We draw near to Him in prayer, and in His presence is peace. Admittedly, this may take some time.
It often takes a season of abiding before the Lord before our hearts break through into the fullness of His peace.
Jesus prayed three times about His burden in Gethsemane.
Paul asked three times for relief from his thorn in the flesh.
Elijah prayed seven times for rain to fall on Carmel (Matthew 26:44; 2 Corinthians 12:8; 1 Kings 18:43).
Sometimes peace comes instantly; other times it comes slowly but surely as we linger before God’s throne. In either case, our fear level is a sort of referendum on the closeness of our friendship with God. It’s a spiritual yardstick, and we grow stronger as we learn to cast our cares on Him in prayer.
Having given your fears to God in prayer, we must pour over the Scriptures, searching out specific promises for our need. Copy them down, memorize them, and meditate on them when rising in the morning, going to bed at night, and working throughout the day.
Here are some verses that have helped me:
Psalm 27:1:“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”
Psalm 118:6:“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”
Proverbs 29:25:“The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.”
Psalm 37:8:“Do not fret—it only causes harm.”
Isaiah 41:10:“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
Those verses are the best fear insurance you can find. Clip them out and place them in locations where you’re prone to anxiety attacks. Hide them in your heart, and let the Word of God fortify your spirit.
Then, trust Him.
The book of Hebrews was written to those facing persecution in the first century. In chapter 12, we’re told that because believers in earlier generations trusted God with their difficulties, we too should “run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith” (Hebrews 12:1-2 NIV).
Perseverance means we aren’t going to be terrorized by worry and fear. We’re going to trust God, fix our eyes on Christ, and keep going.
Missionary E. Stanley Jones learned this in India. He arrived on the mission field with a great passion for ministry but battling crippling anxiety that led to periodic physical collapses. Diagnosing himself, Jones admitted to “brain fatigue, nervous exhaustion, and depression.”
In this state, Jones traveled to the city of Lucknow for a series of meetings. There, one night while praying, he felt the Lord speaking to him. Though not audible, the Lord's voice seemed to say:
Are you yourself ready for this work to which I have called you?
“No, Lord, I am done for,” Jones replied. “I have reached the end of my resources.”
If you will turn that over to Me and not worry about it, I will take care of it.
“Lord,” Jones said, “I close the bargain right here.”
Just then a great peace pervaded his whole being. Said Jones, “I knew it was done! Life—Abundant Life—had taken possession of me. I was so lifted up that I scarcely touched the road as I quietly walked home that night. I went through the days, working far into the night, and came down to bedtime wondering why in the world I should ever go to bed at all, for there was not the slightest trace of tiredness of any kind. I seemed possessed by life and peace and rest—by Christ Himself.”
For the rest of his life, Jones never forgot what the Lord had whispered in his ear: If you will turn that over to me and not worry about it, I’ll take care of it.
Are the cruel criminals of fear and worry stalking you? Let your fears drive you to prayer; claim God’s promises; and persevere by fixing your eyes on Jesus.
If you’ll turn your burden over to Him and not worry about it, He’ll take care of you.
The Lord Jesus Himself said: “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).