Disciple Up # 161
Fighting the Good Fight
By Louie Marsh, 5-27-2020
What caused me to change what I had planned, John Stott, Christ the Controversialist Introductory Essay A may come later.
Suicide last night, others from my past.
What is real spiritual warfare?
I’m preaching on this topic this coming Sunday, so won’t be referencing the Ephesians 6 passage much.
- Spiritual warfare is NOT what most of you think it is and it’s NOT what many if not most of you probably what you were taught that it is.
- This topic is Kooksville, and attracts lots and lots of kooks from all different sides of the church.
- The Bible is very limited in what it says on this topic. But the topic is fascinating and people read it and say, I’m going to study and figure this out. Then they do study the Bible and discover they aren’t going to figure this out because there’s not much there.
- How do I go past this? Easy, I take the train to Kooksville. It’s quick and easy to take that train because it’s running all the time. You get on that train by deciding that you are going to figure out what Scripture doesn’t tell you. This is variously done by reading and listen to what others are saying from their homes in Kooksville. Then you begin to pray and ask for “revelations” and then you get them in the form of emotional impressions, stories and experiences all mixed together. In the end what you’ve got is an ego/emotion driven nightmare that has little to nothing to do with what Scripture actually says.
- You could call this a form of Gnosticism, a label that can be applied to a lot of teaching and beliefs both in and out of the church.
Short Definition of Spiritual Warfare: Growing the Fruit of the Spirit.
I close almost every episode of this podcast by saying, “Remember every time is a good time to Disciple Up.” What does that mean? It means to get up and grow and move and fight and win. Living the Christian life, growing spiritually, keeping your heart open and soft and being open to others. In other words becoming spiritually mature IS SPIRITUAL WARFARE.
Biblical Background for viewing life as Spiritual Warfare
4 but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked. 5 Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist, and faithfulness the belt of his loins. Isaiah 11:4-5 (ESV)
15 Truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. The LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice. 16 He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no one to intercede; then his own arm brought him salvation, and his righteousness upheld him. 17 He put on righteousness as a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation on his head; he put on garments of vengeance for clothing, and wrapped himself in zeal as a cloak. Isaiah 59:15-17 (ESV)
The New Testament:
11 But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:11-12 (ESV)
Forlorn hope – group left behind to cover an Army’s retreat.
4 And they worshiped the dragon, for he had given his authority to the beast, and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who can fight against it?” Revelation 13:4 (ESV)
3 For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. 5 We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, 6 being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete. 2 Corinthians 10:3-6 (ESV)
12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 (ESV)
32 What do I gain if, humanly speaking, I fought with beasts at Ephesus? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.” 1 Corinthians 15:32 (ESV)
8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 1 Thessalonians 5:8 (ESV)
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.
14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak. Ephesians 6:10-20 (ESV)
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