Spiritual Weapons, Part I

A Dream

A number of years ago, the Lord gave me a dream.  Not all dreams are from the Lord, of course, but this dream was like no other dream I had ever had before.  And because of its special impact on my life, I now believe without reservation that this dream was inspired by the Holy Spirit.

I was in a house which was locked, not from the inside but from the outside.  I knew that I could not get out.  Suddenly, I came under strong physical attack by three evil men.  I never tried to escape from them, even though they were menacing and I was terribly afraid.  Beside me stood a close friend I now know was the Lord Jesus!

As these evil men came boldly toward me, I was strongly impressed to speak directly to them.  I said, “May you be struck blind, and deaf, and dumb in the name of Jesus!”

Immediately, these words had their effect, and the attackers were rendered helpless.  They became blind, and deaf, and dumb!

At once I awoke from this dream and found myself wide awake.  Immediately, the Lord spoke to me in my spirit, as clearly as I have ever heard Him speak.  He said, “Use the Spiritual Weapons that you have!”

Thereafter, I began to search the Word of God, the Scriptures, asking God to show me the Spiritual Weapons and how to use them.  I was familiar with the idea of putting on the full armor of God (Ephesians 5), but aside from the Sword of the Spirit, I wasn’t familiar with any other weapons.

After studying the Word to find weapons, I was amazed.  Never before had I realized the extent of God’s full provision for every Spirit-filled believer for meeting and defeating the enemy.

The Weapons Jesus Used

Since we are all part of the Body of Christ, we have the same Spiritual Weapons that Jesus used while on earth in the battle against the forces of darkness.  Paul writes,

The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.  Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy.  But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts. (Romans 13:12-14)

 The word translated “armor” in this passage is the Greek word hoopla, which is also translated elsewhere as “weapons.”  Therefore, let us indeed put on, and use, the armor and weapons by clothing ourselves in Jesus Christ, for He is our armor and weapons!

The Spiritual Battle

The Apostle Paul writes this teaching in his letter to the Corinthians,

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses.  We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. (II Corinthians 10:3-5)  

This is the same passage in the Authorized Version (KJV) translation:  

For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;  Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.

A “stronghold” is essentially a castle or a fortress, but in an interpretive sense, it is an argument or rationalization used to fortify an opinion.  And an “imagination” is a judgment or decision passed by the conscious mind that casts doubt on the truth of the Word of God.

We learn from this teaching that our battles in this life are  not against flesh and blood, not against neighbors, wives, deacons, or bosses.  Instead, our warfare is in the spiritual realm against strongholds and high imaginations, against Satan and the demonic powers of the enemy.  Since we are instructed to walk not according to the flesh but according to the spirit, we will only find defeat if we use carnal, or earthly, weapons.  

Using Spiritual Weapons, therefore, we may pull down and negate all the lies of the enemy, even those that exist in the hearts of people that separate them from God.  This victory is not gained in the natural realm, however.  It is accomplished in the spiritual realm through spiritual revelation and intercessory prayer. 

 Uncrossed_gladius              

The Sword of the Spirit

While in a trance on the Isle of Patmos, the Apostle John saw the Lord Jesus Christ in all the glory of His power:  “In His right hand He held seven stars, and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and His face was like the sun shining in its strength” (Revelation 1:16).

What is this two-edged sword?  It is mentioned again in  the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, where Paul writes about putting on the whole armor of God: “And take . . .  the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17). 

Also, in the Book of Hebrews the Sword of the Spirit appears again, complete with a specific definition:

For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)

The Sword of the Spirit, then, is the Word of God, in all of its various manifestations in this world.  John saw the Sword in the mouth of Jesus because Christ is the Logos, the eternal Word of God.  Every word that proceeds out of His mouth is the Word of God. 

As believers in Jesus, we also have the Word of God abiding and dwelling in us (see John 15:7).  As ambassadors for Christ, we may speak the Word of God in this world, whether it be in prayer for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven, or by resisting the Devil that he might flee from us. 

The Sword in Action

In John’s Gospel, Jesus is referred to as the “Word of God,” the word Logos in the Greek:  “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1).    

We’ve seen how the Lord Jesus is described in the Book of Revelation as having a sharp two-edged sword coming out of His mouth.  It should not be startling, then, to realize that Jesus Himself used this weapon during His earthly ministry.  This spiritual weapon of the Word of God is particularly powerful when Jesus is engaging directly with Satan.

During the “Temptation of Jesus,” described in the Fourth Chapter of Matthew’s Gospel, for example, Jesus is tempted three times by Satan, once to assuage His hunger by turning stones into bread, once to throw Himself off the pinnacle of the temple to see if He would be rescued by God, and once to receive all of the kingdoms of the earth as a result of bowing down to Satan.  

After every temptation, Jesus did not use carnal or earthly weapons.  Instead He used the Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God.  Three times in response to the words of Satan, Jesus quoted the Scriptures, each time saying “It is written…”  Satan departed from Jesus at that time to renew his assault on Christ many times during the next three years, but Jesus Christ was always the victor, even when it seemed like He was defeated.  

 

 

 

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