OFF KILTER- Weapons of our Warfare
Today's topic "Weapons of Our Warfare" comes to us from the Big D (Deliverance) and their 1990 song and album of the same name. The album cover shows the apostle Paul writing his epistles from jail while an angel fights a demon in the background.
2 Corinthians 10:3-6 (NIV) "For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 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. And we will be ready to punish every act of disobedience, once your obedience is complete."
2 Corinthians 10:3-6 (The Message) "The world is unprincipled. It's dog-eat-dog world out there! The world doesn't fight fair. But we don't live or fight our battles that way- never have and never will. The tools of our trade aren't for marketing or manipulation, but they are for demolishing that entire massively corrupt culture. We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity."
First off, let me note that the apostle Paul, wrote this letter to the church at Corinth. He was the first missionary after Jesus died and rose again in the 1st century AD. He would go and start new churches and then move on to start more, and then write to his churches and help them to grow- sometimes praising them and sometimes admonishing them about their bad behavior. His books are deep and full of theology, and probably not the best place to start if you are new to exploring the Bible.
Nonetheless, Deliverance's cd Weapons of our Warfare and Frank Peretti's books This Present Darkness and Piercing the Darkness illustrate beautifully that the natural world that we see and live in is not all that is out there. There is a spiritual plane and a warfare that goes on beyond our human comprehension. Angels and demons fighting behind the scenes, but the actions of human beings make a difference for good or for evil. The metaphor of warfare is used because we understand what war looks like, but at the same time the Bible says that our weapons are different. Ephesians 6: 10-20 talks about the armor of God being the belt of truth, breastplate of righteousness, shoes of the gospel of peace, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit- God's own Word. The Word of God (also a name used to describe Jesus) is powerful enough to bring down demonic strongholds.
So these weapons, or tools are used not only to affect the war engaged around us, but in our own Christian walk. When we accept Jesus as the Master of our lives, his blood washes away our sins, but we don't become sinless. We wage a war within ourselves between our old man and our new man (more Pauline theology.) A good example for guys is lust. The christian guy wants to follow God and grow closer to Him, but if pornography has a stronghold in his heart and mind, there will be a struggle between staying pure and giving into sinful desires. Recognize that this is a spiritual struggle, not just a natural one. Your enemy the devil would love to use this as a trap to derail your walk, but these verses say that you can use the Word of God to bring your thoughts under control. Daily you must choose to fight the sinful urges within you and cling to God.