Whether you know it or not, we are in a full-blown battle. If you are feeling all comfy in your comfy bed and dreaming about walking through the most beautiful meadow ever. Here in America I think we have a false sense of security. Like it or not, the is a very real battle happening.
If you haven’t noticed I have doing a few blog posts about praying for our pastors and church leaders and how it is OK to go to your pastor if you have questions or concerns. Satan tells us not to and would do whatever it takes to cause conflicts, battles and in some cases the conflicts cause them to stop going to church all together or to lose their faith.
I also believe that there are some if not most of those who are believers in Christ have this idea that they will never have to struggle and go through difficult trials and temptations. Satan particularly targets those who have strong faith. For quite some time now I have noticed that a number of our church have been suffering from some severe attacks from Satan. If you think just because you are a Christian you are exempt, then think again.
I’m hoping I won’t come under fire from some people at church and from my pastor. I love all of those who come to my church. Many of them I have known for over 20 yrs. My church was founded 65 years ago I think it is. Those who attended my church didn’t really have anything bad happen at church. One of our Deacons was talking about how our church never had the problems other ones had. Everyone was happy happy joy joy. I don’t even know if it was a month later when things began to crumble. Things got so bad that our church went to having standing room only on some Sundays to having only 40.
It seems as if since then, Satan has taken a foot hold. Over the past 18 months, it seems as if Satan has really been working overtime. This time it isn’t because of our pastor, well in a sense it is. Pastor Ray has a different way of doing things than any other pastor we have had. Pastor Ray is someone I would call an outreach pastor. The reason I say that is you will find him at the college handing out Bibles and offering to pray for the students. Our church is located directly across the street from the university and we have many students that park their cars at our church and they walk across. Even if Pastor Ray is the only one there at the prayer station, he is there.
Since Pastor Ray has been reaching out to the students and handing out bibles and praying with them, it is as if Satan has turned things up a notch. Pastor Rays wife has been diagnosed with cancer. The home they were living in has been sold as she is getting treatment for cancer. They had to move three days prior. Then they have been having internal battles which consists of misunderstandings. Because of the misunderstandings we have lost some long time church members. If Satan thinks he is going to win this battle, he is mistaken.
If you look at Acts 19:15 it shows how Paul the apostle was not only known in heaven, but also in hell!
Acts 19:15 One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?”
Job 1:7- The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”
He had their attention! First Peter 5:8-9 teaches that Satan roams the earth seeking someone to devour, which also goes along with the Job narrative (Job 1:7).
So Paul will answer a number of questions. We’ll consider five. Who is the enemy? Where is the battle? What is our role? What is our protection? And what weapons are we given for the battle?
Ephesians 6:10–12 says, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” This text teaches some crucial truths: we can only stand strong in the Lord’s power, it is God’s armor that protects us, and our battle is ultimately against spiritual forces of evil in the world.
When it comes to the reasons why a person leaves a church, I find it is a personal one. I do wish that people would sit down with the pastor or whomever they have an issue with and discuss what they are upset over. I have found about 90 percent of the time the reason they are leaving is because of a misunderstanding, gossip and just not fully listening.
For those who think that it is going to be easy to do what God has instructed us to do and to do what we are called to do would be easy. Jesus did the will of God and He was crucified, and church history tells us Paul was beheaded! It’s not how many years we live, but what we do with the years we live that matters!
I’m not sure how many are aware that Satan isn’t an idiot and he has no issue attacking Christians and if you think otherwise, you need a reality check. Satan has a way of focusing on those who are a the biggest threat to him. He is all about taking someone who is a believer in Christ over someone who doesn’t have any faith. If you go to Genesis which is the first book in the Bible there are some examples of this power struggle.
God gave Adam a commission to have His rule over the whole earth (Gen. 1:28), and immediately after that the devil came and convinced both Adam and Eve to disobey God and abandon their posts as God’s vice regents over the earth (Gen. 3:1-8).
Genesis 1:28 – God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
Genesis 3:1-8 – Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” Read More….
If you a believer in Christ and you have a lot of faith, I would say to not be discouraged when you are attacked or deceived. Someone told me years ago that the reason I am being attacked is because of my faith and Satan isn’t in the losing game. I think this is what is going on with my pastor and things at churches and mine included.
I was thinking about all of the things that my pastor and friend has been through recently and I honestly feel like he is doing a great job when it comes to reaching others when it comes to their relationship with Christ. If my pastor was just another person, Satan would have no issue and would move on. “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against principalities, powers and the rulers of darkness in high places” Paul said “our struggle” meaning he was including himself in this struggle. Every time there was an open door for ministry he had many adversaries.
Ephesians 6:10-13 – Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
I have been searching for the right words and message to give to those who are struggling and feel like they want to throw in the towel. I have prayed for the right words to give to my pastor friends near and far that the apostle Peter also tells us to resist the devil, standing firm in the faith (1 Pet. 5:9). Peter knew because of his own experiences that faith in God is the key to standing firm in the midst of the day of evil because, when he denied Christ three times, Jesus prayed for him that his “faith” would not fail (Luke 22:31-32).
1 Peter 5:9– Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings
Luke 22:31-32-“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. 32 But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.”
I want to close this by saying , do not be afraid when you are in tribulation, because Jesus has already overcome the world!
John 16:33- “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
My Next Blog will be about Putting on the Armor of God.