Friday, 6 November 2015
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds,
2 Corinthians 10:4
The words of this verse show us that along with our war noted in the previous verse which is “not in the flesh,” the weapons that we use are not material (or carnal) weapons. Rather they are spiritual. They are described by Paul in several places of the New Testament such as –
“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
An even fuller description is found in Ephesians 6:11-16. In these verses, he uses real, tangible things and equates them to spiritual concepts. It is with these spiritual things that we do indeed battle against the forces of evil. Starting in this verse, and for the next couple of verses, he will explain how these weapons are focused, beginning with, “for pulling down strongholds.”
This is a military concept where someone who is in a defensive position has their fortress pulled down from around them so that they can be easily attacked and overcome. A beautiful example of this concept is found in 2 Samuel 17 –
“Therefore I advise that all Israel be fully gathered to you, from Dan to Beersheba, like the sand that is by the sea for multitude, and that you go to battle in person. 12 So we will come upon him in some place where he may be found, and we will fall on him as the dew falls on the ground. And of him and all the men who are with him there shall not be left so much as one. 13 Moreover, if he has withdrawn into a city, then all Israel shall bring ropes to that city; and we will pull it into the river, until there is not one small stone found there.” 2 Samuel 17:11-13
It should be noted now that just because Paul is speaking of a spiritual battle which uses spiritual implements to obtain its purposes, this does not exclude Christians from entering true battles with real weapons. This type of sleight of hand use of a verse to mean something not intended is common and it is inappropriate. Just because Christians are in a spiritual war does not mean that they are limited only to spiritual battle.
Life application: There is a spiritual battle which rages around us. It is as real as any other type of warfare, but it involves matters of the highest importance. We must be ready at all times with the weapons of our battle and employ them in faith against the unseen enemies that come against us. Take time to read Ephesians 6:11-16 and think on Paul’s use of terminology concerning our spiritual warfare.
Lord God, Your word says that we are in a spiritual battle and that we need to have the right implements of war in order to properly wage war, and to counter attacks which come against us from the enemy around us. Give us the wisdom to pull down his strongholds so that we can enter into his defensive line and attack him where he is weak. Allow us the honor of giving the devil more than just a black eye as we fight against his wiles. Thank You for being with us in this Lord! Amen.