SPIRITUAL WARFARE and KINGDOM STRATEGY
By DON E. STANTON
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but
against the rulers, against the powers, against the
world-forces of this darkness, against the spiritual
forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore
take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able
to resist in the evil day, and having done everything to
QUESTIONS THAT DEMAND AN ANSWER
? When Y’shua the Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ, is
Victor, having triumphed over Satan at the Cross and
having disarmed powers of darkness, making a public
display of them
how is it that satanic activity is increasing and
countless lives are being destroyed through evil?
? Why is it, that while following a victorious
Master, many Christians are only “half-victorious” and
many others are utterly defeated?
? Why is it that many believers who once ran well,
have ended up as “castaways”?
? How is it that even mature Christian leaders have
fallen prey to the corruption of the world, the lust of
the flesh, and the pride of life?
? How is it, that when followers of the Messiah have
been promised the authority and power of God, they can
resort to politics and gimmicks?
? How is it, when the LORD of Glory has promised to
supply their every need according to His riches in glory
that God’s people can stoop to financial improprieties,
greasiness, and beggary?
? How is it, when the hallmark of Christ’s disciples
is love for one another, that Christians fall out so
easily, and resort to “shooting” each other?
? Why is it that when God has given so many
magnificent promises, many of our prayers seem to remain
? Why is it, when the Truth has been revealed, and
the results of accepting or rejecting the Gospel are so
serious and eternal, that Bible-believers are so easily
lulled into selfish, petty living and castle-building?
? How is it, when spiritual weapons are said to be
mighty to the destruction of demonic fortresses, that
the church is largely on the defensive and is being
either plundered by schisms and heresies, or stupefied
by spiritual narcotics and sedatives?
? Why is it, when it is written, “we overwhelmingly
conquer through Him who loved us,”
that we sometimes settle for a “no-win war”?
It is evident that the basic principles of spiritual
warfare are not being effectively practiced. It could be
that many have not faced up to the reality of the
spiritual warfare in which the church and the individual
believer is engaged. Or it could be that these divine
principles for waging warfare
have not been clearly grasped and taught, or
have been neglected and forgotten, or
have been abrogated or nullified by carnal living.
In these days when Satan is seeking to wear down the
the Holy Spirit is alerting people of God everywhere, to
be equipped for
The tragedy is that when the Bible says; “Thanks be to
God who GIVES US THE VICTORY through our Lord Jesus
(1 Corinthians 15:57),
many Christians are willing to compromise with the enemy
and call it quits. God forbid! More than ever, we must
VICTORY IN Y’SHUA. YAHWEH MIGHTY IN BATTLE!
“Who is this King of Glory?
YHWH strong and mighty; YHWH mighty in battle.”
The Reality of Spiritual War
Four Things You Must Know
KNOW YOUR KING!
Right Evaluation of our
Right Evaluation of the
Understanding the Plans of the
Knowing the Strategy of our
KNOW YOUR ENEMY!
The Spirit Realm
The Origin of Evil
Right Evaluation of the
The Goals and Strategies of
The Battle of the Mind
Satan is a Defeated Foe
Bind the Activity of the Strong
Eight Preparations for Effective
Six Ways to Increase Your
The Authority of the Believer
KNOW YOUR WEAPONS
Fifteen Strategic Directions
The Weapons of our
Five Aspects of Prayer
The Necessity of a Holy Life in
The Power of the Spoken
Seven Steps to
ABROGATE: to cancel, repeal, annul
AUTHORITY: legal power or right; delegated
BRUTE FORCE: power without reason; animal
power; power of nature
CARNAL: of the flesh, worldly, of
human nature, in contrast to the spiritual
COMBAT: armed fighting, battle,
NON- COMBATANT: one who does not take up arms to fight
DEPRAVITY: corruption, moral wickedness,
EVALUATION: the correct estimation of the
worth or quality of something
INSINUATE: to introduce or enter a
situation, indirectly, and slyly; to suggest indirectly
INVECTIVENESS: strong verbal attacks, criticism or
MATURITY: full-grown, fully developed,
REACTION: response to influences and
RED-LIGHT AREAS: areas of prostitution, immoral places
SPIRITUAL: of the spirit, in this book,
particularly, of God
STRATEGIC: skilful, vital, essential,
effective in fulfilling plans
STRATEGY: planning and directing of
military operations; plan of action; skilful ways of
STRONGHOLD: fortified place; fortress; area
from which control is exercised.
YHWH / YAHWEH: The Name of God, meaning, “The Eternal
Y’SHUA: The original Hebrew Name
of Jesus, which means, “Yahweh, the Eternal One, is
REALITY OF SPIRITUAL WAR
“Spiritual War” is not a quaint way of saying, “things
don’t always go as we hope.” Oh no! Spiritual war is a
fact - it’s a very real war that is constantly raging in
It is a war that has no reprieve or relaxation. The
forces of darkness work non-stop - 25 hours a day, 367
days a year. No off-days, no rest periods, no declared
times of truce. It is absolutely constant.
The evidence of the war is seen in lives - in
despairing, defeated, and degraded lives. It is seen in
the classroom, where the battle for the mind is most
acute. It is seen in our political systems where
corruption warps the decisions of appointed leaders. The
war is seen in the streets, in the news media, in our
institutions, and in our churches. It finds expression
in physical wars - in nations, in communities, and in
It is fierce, not only in our inner city red-light areas
and skid rows, but in the most fashionable quarters.
We see the forces of darkness working in fellowships, in
ministries, and in all special campaigns and gospel
outreach. It’s Kingdom Warfare! It is a war in which the
Kingdom of Darkness opposes the Kingdom of Light.
This warfare is in no way, a game. Some people have the
idea that God is playing a big game with Satan and we
are all pawns in the game. But Yahweh is not playing
chess and Satan is not playing checkers. This is not a
game - it is warfare. And we are all aware of the
results of this warfare - in our anguished society, in
broken homes and lives. Throughout the nations, the
results are tragic and eternal.
The fact that it is spiritual does not mean that it is
more mythical, or less disastrous than any cold-blooded
conflict using rifles, missiles or even nuclear weapons.
But the consequences of the spiritual war can be far
more long-lasting than a physical world war.
EVERYONE IS INVOLVED!
In Colossians 1:14, we read that God has transferred
believers from the Kingdom of Darkness into the Kingdom
of His dear Son. There are only these two kingdoms, and
every one of us - every person in the world, is in
either of these two kingdoms.
If we have been born again, we are in the Kingdom of
Light, the Kingdom of the Son. And we have to face the
realities of our involvement in His Kingdom. As part of
the kingdom, we are going to experience warfare whether
we like it or not. The kingdom is not a combat-free,
battle-proof luxury coach!
Three things are demanded by our involvement in the
Kingdom of Light:
to our King.
on our King.
to the King.
This calls for an understanding of, and an abiding by,
the principles of the Kingdom of God. We cannot afford
to be a people who pray.
“THY KINGDOM COME”
and then live in disregard to the laws of the Kingdom?
No! We must understand the kingdom’s principles and
strategies, and we must be prepared for all that the
King wants to do in us, and through us, as subjects and
soldiers of the Kingdom of Light.
CHURCH HAS BEEN ROBBED
Most believers are aware that we are approaching the
climax of the age, and that this is a very crucial time
in which we live. We are all aware of Satan’s activities
and soul-damning devices in the world. But sadly, we
fail to recognise the demonic strategy to hinder the
church, and our own personal lives?
Today the church is being bombarded by every satanic
device that’s calculated to destroy, and the tragic part
is that the church is foundering for lack of spiritual
understanding. Often, even leaders do not have a clear
understanding of what God’s plan and strategy is. The
church has been robbed of vital spiritual understanding.
It has been hood-winked into an acceptance of spiritual
feebleness as though
were our inheritance; as though God had called us to a
life of infirmity. So often, it seems, we don’t know why
we are here or where we are going. We talk about the
Kingdom of God, about weapons, about the devil, as
though they were mere imaginations.
It is a sad fact; the church is being taken unawares.
The church is being attacked, and we don’t really know
to repel those attacks - because we have not been taught
the deeper strategies of the Christian warfare. Without
clear understanding, we are defaulting. It is because we
have either not understood those strategies, or because
we have not applied the strategies in our lives.
This is a time when we must urgently re-learn basic
principles of spiritual warfare and the strategies of
Yahweh the Eternal One.
Yes, we all know that we “have to do something” - it’s
the last days. But we often resort to wrong strategy. We
resort to human efforts and carnal strategies.
Invariably, our understanding of the plans of God is so
small. We ask, “What is the plan of God?” And quickly we
reply, “Saving people from Hell and getting them to
Heaven.” Oh! But there are much deeper plans of God than
just getting people to heaven.
Yes, it’s true; God is bringing many sons unto glory.
But His plan is
deeper. God has planned that His people should learn to
share His Work.
And by that, I don’t mean doing a little bit here and
there. It’s knowing and understanding the plans of God.
It’s entering into an ever deeper sharing of the mind
and will of God. It’s learning to live, to walk, to work
and to conquer by the use of the same spiritual
principles that God abides by. It’s learning to share
and to exercise divine authority, in fulfilling the work
Beyond this understanding, God is preparing us, through
our probation on Planet Earth,
to reign with Him,
THE WORKS OF DARKNESS
We are told by the Apostle Paul, in 1 Corinthians 15:25,
that Jesus must reign till all enemies are put under His
feet. All things are to be brought into subjection to
God. And we - you and I, believer - have a very vital
part, as God’s co-workers, in doing that.
The most readily recognised aspect of God’s plan is that
of redemption - saving those who have been enslaved by
Satan and sin. But more than that, God is bringing an
end to all the works of darkness. In I John 3:8, we
read, the Son of God appeared for this purpose that He
destroy the works of the devil.
With the evidence of Satan’s works all around, the
question arises; Did Jesus destroy the works of the
devil, or is He still doing it? Answer: He has done it,
and He is still doing it, and He will continue to do it,
step by step - all in an orderly manner - until Satan’s
work is totally destroyed.
At the cross, when He died for the sins of the whole
world, Jesus broke the legal hold that Satan had gained
over mankind through their
choosing to sin.
But the power holding people in bondage is actually
broken, only when people
choose to call
upon the Lord and surrender their lives to Him. So the
Lord’s work, destroying the enmity, binding the activity
of demonic forces, breaking the chains of sin, smashing
strongholds built by Satan, must continue, day by day,
through the preaching of the Word, by the operation of
the Holy Spirit in conviction and regeneration, and
through the use of spiritual weapons and authority by
And as part of the Kingdom of God, you and I share in
God’s strategy for the continuing work of combating the
works of the devil. You say, “I can’t do that! That’s
God’s work.” True! But you are called to
so it is
work too. You are a part of the Kingdom of God, and it
is the work of the Kingdom to
combat the activity
of the devil.
By the influences of the satanic forces of spiritual
wickedness, the majority of mankind is also in a state
of rebellion to God. Our response is usually, “Well, God
had better do something about it!” But the Lord Jesus
explains to His disciples, “I have called you, and I
have shared My plans with you, and you are to do My
are the ones through whom I will do something about it!”
The “something” the Lord will do is not just
“anything.” It is a very deep work of the Spirit in the
lives of those of His people who are willing, loyal and
obedient; training and equipping them to continue and to
share the work that the Messiah began - the work of
destroying the works of the devil, and of bringing God’s
people to maturity.
A great tragedy is that sometimes we carry the banner
“Doomed for Defeat,” rather than, “The Victory is the
Lord’s.” And indeed, because we do not know how to
defend ourselves in the correct spiritual way, and
because we resort to weapons of the flesh and neglect
God’s provision for our victory, we do seem doomed to
defeat! God forbid!
The ultimate result of this spiritual war is
for Christ, for He must reign till all enemies are put
under His feet and evil is absolutely contained.
Ultimate victory is assured also, for all who are part
of the Kingdom of Light. But victory on the present
battlefield can be, and should be, realized, for God
GIVES the victory.
THINGS YOU MUST KNOW!
KNOW YOUR KING,
His plans and strategies.
KNOW YOUR ENEMY,
his plans and strategies.
your position, your authority and your participation in
KNOW YOUR WEAPONS,
the effectiveness of those weapons, and ways to wage
warfare. In other words, know how to put into practice,
the strategy of God.
Our studies on these four vital matters are based
particularly on the Book of Ephesians. The Apostle Paul
prays that our eyes might be opened and that our
understanding of the mysteries of God might be
Let’s read carefully, three passages from this
thrilling book that form the basis of these studies.
“For this reason I too, having heard of your faith in
the Master, Y’shua, and your love for all the saints
(the set-apart people of God), do not cease giving
thanks for you, making mention of you in my
prayers; that the God of our Master, Y’shua the Messiah,
the Father of Glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and
revelation in coming to a full knowledge of Him;
that the eyes of your understanding may be
enlightened, so that you know what is the hope of His
calling, and what are the riches of His glorious
inheritance in the saints (the set-apart people of
God); and what is the exceeding greatness of His
power toward us who are believing.
“These are in accordance with the working of His
mighty strength which He exerted in the Messiah, when He
raised Him from the dead, and seated Him at His right
hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule
and authority and power and dominion, and every name
that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one
“And He put all things under His feet, and made Him the
Head over all things for the Ekklesia - the universal
assembly of believers who are in Y’shua - which is
His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.”
“And you were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you
once walked according to the course of this world,
according to the prince of the power of the air, the
spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.
Indeed, at one time, we all lived among them
following the lusts of our flesh - our sinful
nature, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of
the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just
like everyone else.
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love
with which He loved us, even when we were dead in
transgressions, made us alive together with the Messiah
- by grace you have been saved - and raised us up
together, and made us sit together in the heavenly
realms in Messiah Y’shua, that in the ages to come
He might show the immeasurable riches of His grace in
kindness toward us in Messiah Y’shua.”
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Master, and in
the strength of His power. Put on the whole armour of
God, that you may be able to stand firm against the
schemes and strategies of the devil. For
our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against
the principalities, against authorities, against the
world-rulers of the darkness of this age, against the
spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly
places. Therefore take up the full armour of God, so
that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and
having done everything, to stand firm.”
If you are in the Kingdom of Light, you know that your
king is Y’shua the Messiah - the Lord Jesus Christ, in
whom dwells all the fullness of the Eternity Deity.
Yes, Y’shua is God manifest in flesh, and you have come
to know Him as your Saviour and Master. You have come to
love and deeply appreciate Him. You “gladly own Him as
your King,” and it’s your joy to sing His praise:
All hail, Redeemer, hail!
For Thou hast died for me;
Thy praise shall never, never fail
Now we need to know, not only
our king is, but we need to know Him in an increasingly
deeper, personal way, so that we come to
know His mind.
It’s then that we can more fully share in His plans and
practice His strategy.
In the book of Daniel we read that they who
their God, shall be strong and do exploits.
And you will recall the Apostle Paul’s consuming desire,
“that I may
There’s a depth to knowing our Lord that must be
explored, if we would lay hold of that purpose for which
Christ laid hold of us.
To begin with, we must have a ...
EVALUATION OF OUR KING
Who is - Y’shua, Jesus, our King?
First, what He is
He is not a
monarch. He is not a
monarch who has very little to say. Jesus is not a
He is not an
master; He is not a
man-appointed, a man-made
type of king. And Jesus is not a
“new age Christ.”
Rather, the Messiah our King, is ...
The Eternal King
The Sovereign Master
The Majesty on High
The Absolute Monarch
The Anointed One
The Eternal Word
The Living Truth
The Absolute Holy One
The Righteous Ruler
The King of Peace
The Lord of Lords, and Lord above all
The Legal Authority and Judge of all men
The All-powerful and All-knowing God
The Victorious Lord of Glory
The Source of Light, Love and everything Good
Y’shua is, of course, much more than can be explained.
He is the beginning and the ending - the limitless One.
“And there are also many other things which Y’shua did,
which if they were written in detail, I suppose that
even the world itself would not have room for all
the books that would be written.”
It’s Satan’s accusation, flaunted in the face of the
Lord Jesus, that Christ is a failure because His
followers are failures. And this accusation Satan levels
at you and me also - “You are a failure; therefore your
Lord is a failure.” But Jesus is not a failure; He is
And moreover, He is committed to the perfecting of all
Already Y’shua has won the
battle so that slaves of sin can be set free. He won the
on the Cross of Calvary;
and secondly, by
from the tomb. He first paid the penalty for sin, and
then He conquered death, and “led captivity captive.”
And He breaks Satan’s hold over all who choose to be
It is a fact,
Satan is a defeated enemy!
“But,” you say, “Satan is still doing so much mischief!”
That’s right! Although Satan was defeated at the cross,
and although he is coming to his end, he has not yet
been bound in the bottomless pit. He will go to the pit
at the right time; he will be ultimately and completely
contained in the Lake of Fire. Without thinking you may
ask, “Why hasn’t God done it already?” Because God’s
is being worked out, step by step.
Our Sovereign Master is the
and we must always affirm this fact, without any doubt
whatever. Our Master is Victor, and He is on the throne
of the universe, above every power. Hallelujah! See
also Ephesians 1:20:
“He (the Father)
raised Him from the dead, and seated Him at His
right hand in the heavenly places.”
So where is your King today? Where is He? In heaven! Not
just in heaven! He is on
in heaven! Paul tells us also in Philippians 2:9-11:
“Therefore (because He humbled Himself), God
exalted Him to the highest place, and gave Him the Name
that is above every name, that at the Name of Y’shua
every knee should bow - in heaven and on earth and under
the earth - and every tongue confess that Y’shua the
Messiah is Lord (the Heavenly Master), to the
glory of YHWH, God the Father.”
We must maintain this right evaluation of our King. He
is the eternal Source; He is the Victorious One; He is
on the throne; He is the righteous, holy God; and being
All-wise, He is very
and perfect in all His ways.
Next, it is important to have a ...
EVALUATION OF THE KINGDOM
You enter the Kingdom of God when you are born again.
You enter the kingdom of God, but the kingdom of God
also enters you. “The Kingdom is within you,” The
When Jesus returns, He will usher in another phase of
His Kingdom - His reign upon earth. This is all part of
the eternal kingdom of God.
A right evaluation sees the Kingdom of God as ...
the genuine Kingdom of
Satan’s Kingdom is a
the Kingdom of
Satan’s kingdom is one of
Darkness, you know, is not the real thing. Light is the
real thing! And that’s our kingdom; the Kingdom of
A kingdom of
We must recognise
that the kingdom of God is not a playground,
a place where everybody can do as they like,
enjoying themselves by doing things that are usually
done in the dark. The Kingdom of God is very
There are very definite principles governing behaviour,
means and methods, relationships and positions. The
Kingdom is not a “free-for-all.”
The Governmental structure and administration of the
Kingdom is under the King’s direction. It is far
superior to human government. This King is in
with all His subjects. It is more like a body system,
where the Heads controls every part. The King is the
Head of all.
“But speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in
all aspects into Him, who is the Head - the
Messiah, from whom the whole body, joined and knit
together by that which every joint supplies, according
to the effective working of each individual part, causes
the growth of the body for the building up of itself in
In the Heavenlies, the King has administration . . .
(Jude 9. 1 Thes. 4:16)
4 Living Creatures
The General Assembly
Myriads of Angels
On earth the King has appointed administration.
“He gave some as ....
for the equipping of
the saints, for the work of service, to the
building up of the body
He also appoints ...
(1 Tim. 3:2)
Besides these spiritual leaders, the King gives a
variety of gifts and ministries to His people severally
as He wills, to fulfil the work of God, which in summary
redeeming men from sin
destroying the works of darkness
bringing the Body to full stature (maturity)
The King does not
anyone as a
because every member of His body is a priest to God -
offering the sacrifice of praise. The Kingdom is a
kingdom of priests.
The King has not appointed a Pope to govern His work.
And He has not appointed “Lords” and “Bosses.”
The work of evangelists, teachers and pastors we know
very well. And the work of the invisible Spirit of God
in convicting, converting and comforting, we know well.
Another work in the affairs of men, is the ministry of
angels. This ministry is unseen, but it is very real
“For He will give His angels charge concerning you, to
guard you in all your ways.”
The Spirit of God - the Comforter - the Holy Spirit, is
the Executive of the King - He is the One who fulfils
the mind of the Messiah, and unites the whole kingdom
into one Divinely-enabled power sphere.
UNDERSTANDING THE PLANS OF THE KING
This is not some vague, “give-it-a-go” type of scheme.
In making man, God did not say, “Well, let’s take a
chance. If Our plan for man does not succeed, then We
will try something else.” No! God’s plan is altogether
wise, and absolutely good. God’s
(reverently-speaking, and for the sake of illustration)
is a “super-computer of an unlimited kind.” Not only can
it process billions of items and prayers per second, and
process any number of separate ‘files’ simultaneously,
but it can inter-process the past and the future with
the present. Or to put it more simply, God knows
everything about everything, and “according to His
purpose (He) works all things after the counsel of His
If I ask, “What is the main plan of God?” you may be
quick to respond, “To save people from Hell.”
That is a
part of the plan, but it is not the
“What could be more important than redemption?” you ask.
The original and ultimate plan of creating and
perfecting a vast family which will participate in the
life of God, and with whom He can eternally share
This is to bring endless satisfaction to the
Father-heart, and endless joy to His Body, His Family.
This is implied in the expression “bringing many sons
More than saving and getting people to heaven, God must
bring all His subjects to
where they embrace not only His salvation, but also the
Father’s heart, mind, vision and will. Turn to Ephesians
3. From verse 17, we have another prayer of the Apostle
“So that the Messiah may dwell in your hearts through
faith in Him. And I pray that you will be
rooted and established in love, so that together with
all the saints (holy ones, believers), you may be
able to comprehend what is the width, length, height and
depth of the Messiah's love - and to know this love
which surpasses knowledge so that you may be filled with
all the fullness of God.”
(Ephesians 3: 17-19)
Here is a staggering fact. We know that Y’shua was
filled with all the fullness of God, but here we see
that Yahweh’s plan is for all His people - all subjects
of the Kingdom of God - to be filled up with all the
fullness of God. You ask, “How is that possible?” If I
quote another verse in Ephesians,
“Be filled with the Spirit”
(5:18) - you may or may not understand.
Often we think of being filled with the Spirit, as
having some power of God. Oh no! That is not it! Power
is only a part of it. To be filled with the Spirit means
that you are filled with all the fullness of God. This
involves a continuous work, a process to maturity and
Renewal of the Mind
Rectification in Attitude and Behaviour
Breaking of the Self-life
Tried and Proven Faith
Release of the Spirit
Conformity to the Will of God
To achieve His goal in us, God leads us to repentance,
to elemental faith, and then on through various trials,
sorrows and sufferings, to absolute surrender, and to
is to produce a deep work in the “inner man” - the
spirit - of all His people, and at the same time,
to use every one of His people
to fulfil His plan to bring other members of His vast
family to perfection.
“And He gave and placed some members as
apostles, some as prophets, some as
evangelists, and some as shepherd-pastors and
teachers, for the perfecting of the set-apart
believers, for the work of service, for the building
up of the body of Messiah; until we all come to the
unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of
God, to a full-grown, mature, perfect man, to the
measure of the stature of the fullness of Messiah.”
We will be dealing with this process more in the chapter
on Know Yourself. At present, let us say, it is God’s
plan that His people should come to
as sons of God, and that each one should be
conformed to the image
of the eternal Son.
You ask in passing, “Why should a Christian suffer?” One
reason: to learn
Consider our Saviour and our Example:
“In bringing many sons to glory, it was most appropriate
that God, for whom and through whom everything
exists, should make the Author of their salvation
perfect through suffering.”
Notice, that verse doesn’t say, bringing many sinners to
glory. God is bringing many
to glory. Of course, we are all sinners saved by grace,
if indeed we have been saved. But we are talking about
something deeper here. We are talking about
But this is not referring to male members of the church.
The word “son” is different to “child.” In Scripture the
word “son” refers to a child who has come to maturity.
It’s nothing to do with whether you are male or female.
of God through the new birth, but we are to grow into
of God - mature spiritual people with whom God can share
His plans for the present, and for the ages to come.
In this verse we see also, that the Author of our
salvation suffered, and He Himself was perfected
through suffering. You may say, “How is what? Jesus was
always perfect. He had no sin in Him. So how can there
be the question of Him becoming perfect?”
This scripture is not dealing with a sin question here.
It’s dealing with
Jesus, as a man, came to
maturity in experience.
Though He was sinless, He came to maturity through the
sufferings He endured, and through His walk with the
Father. So when Scripture speaks about bringing many
sons unto glory, it’s not simply talking about getting
sinners to heaven. God is not interested in merely
getting sinners saved from hell. Of course, He is doing
that, but much more!
God wants to implant His mind and will in our lives so
that we will share His thoughts, principles, plans and
goals. Through His dealings with us, including our
trials and sufferings, we grow to maturity. And when we
reach “glory” we will be prepared to share in the things
that are yet to come.
I can’t tell you very much about the plans of God for
eternity, because God has not revealed details in
Scripture; nor have I been caught up into heaven or
given any vision about His plans for the future. The
Scripture says that it has not even entered our minds,
the things that God has planned, for those who love Him.
(1 Corinthians 2:9).
But we do know that God intends that every one of us
come to maturity, so that we will able to fully share
His eternal plans.
I don’t know how God will complete the work in us, but I
do know that Jesus suffered, and that through His
suffering, He came to perfection. We often think
however, that WE will come to maturity in a comfortable
luxury coach. No! God has called us to this amazing
participation in the Life of Jesus.
Therefore all the trials that we endure, all the
persecutions, all the problems we face, are used
together for good and for our maturity.
We are told in another passage that we are to fill up
the sufferings of Christ.
And Paul says,
“Just as the sufferings of Messiah are ours in
abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through the
(2 Corinthians 1:5)
He explains further this association:
“Always carrying about in the body the dying of the
Master, Y’shua, that the life of Y’shua also may be
manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly
being given over to death for the sake of Y’shua, that
the life of Y’shua also may be manifested in our mortal
(2 Corinthians 4:10-11)
MYSTERY of GOD’S INTENTION
Through the Word, the Holy Spirit is teaching us,
preparing us, using us, and as we go on, step by step,
He reveals His plans, His will and mind, ever more
fully, to us.
“He made known to us the mystery of His will, according
to His kind intention which He purposed beforehand
in Himself - a plan for the period when the age has
reached its fullness; a plan to sum up all things
in the Messiah - to bring everything under the
headship of Messiah - everything in heaven and on
So Yahweh has revealed the mystery of His will, His
plans. And if you don’t feel very confident about the
plans of God, then you need to study and learn what they
When a person joins the army as a private soldier, the
Commander-in-Chief of the army does not come and tell
this private the detailed plans that he has. The private
has to gradually learn. At first he only knows the
general plans but as he is promoted, to Corporal,
Sergeant, Major, Colonel and later on maybe, to General,
he learns more details of the plans. And as we progress
in the things of the Kingdom, our Commander reveals more
and more of His will and strategy to us.
We must keep on learning and progressing. The Apostle
“To me, the very least of all God’s set-apart people,
this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the
unfathomable riches of the Messiah, and to bring to
light what is the administration – the plan
and purpose, and the working out of the
mystery which from the beginning of the ages has been
hidden in God, who created all things through the
Messiah, Y’shua. His purpose is that now, through the
Church – the Ekklesia, the universal body of those
who are in Y’shua the Messiah, the manifold wisdom
of God might be made known to the angelic rulers
and authorities in the heavenly places. This was in
accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out
in Y’shua the Messiah, our Master.”
of God concerns the
of God. Here again we need a right evaluation; our God
is an all-wise God. In our immaturity, we are inclined
to think that God makes mistakes. We see things
happening around us that prompts us to think that God
has lost control. We may even be inclined to say, “Well,
if I were God, I would do it this way.” But the
of God is
and when the plans of God are fulfilled, He is going to
demonstrate the perfection of His wisdom
through the church.
Reader, you may not have any questions about the wisdom
of God, but you might have a question or two about the
church, for believers are very imperfect. You may say,
“I think God made a mistake about the church. He had
better start again.” Oh no! (And remember, not all that
is called “church” is the Body of Messiah). The wisdom
of God is perfect, and as Paul says, through the church,
God is going to display His wisdom.
The ultimate is that God is going to fill the whole
universe with His redeemed and perfected people.
This we see in these passages of Ephesians:
“And He put all things under His feet, and made Him the
Head over all things for the Ekklesia - the universal
assembly of believers who are in Y’shua - which is
His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.”
“He who descended is also the very One who ascended far
above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.”
So God is preparing a vast family, and through His
family, His people, God is going to fill everything.
When God made Adam and Eve, He told them to fill the
earth. And we see how well their descendents have done
that of late. But God’s plan is to fill not only the
earth but the whole new universe, with the redeemed
physical presence of His people. He has not given us
details of the plan, but we can see that He is going to
fill everything with His people. And you and I have a
part in that tremendous plan of God.
THE STRATEGY OF OUR KING
Strategy is the ways of planning and directing
operations to disable the enemy. Worldly military
strategy employs all types of methods, good and bad.
Satan’s strategy uses everything that is devilish,
deceitful, and depraved. In contrast, God’s strategy is
always pure, perfect and impeccable.
Divine strategy is God’s way of fulfilling His plans;
and it is always . . .
scheming. Reader, this may sound simple, but it is a
very vital lesson that you and I must learn. For
so often resort to carnal action. You remember, the
Lord Jesus said, if somebody strikes you on the cheek,
give him your other cheek? Our natural, reaction is to
hit back. That is carnality - devilish strategy.
Carnal reactions are not strategies and principles of
the Kingdom of God, but are those of the kingdom of
Satan. Have we not learnt that lesson yet? To some
degree we may have, but we need to learn it thoroughly,
and in all our
to whatever happens. Our strategy must always be
spiritual; never carnal! When we give way to heated
arguments, for example, we have forgotten divine
strategy, and have resorted to carnal weaponry.
God always works in a
and perfect manner. He never does anything underhanded,
or in a disorderly way, and never takes action before
the right time. He never defeats evil by use of evil.
Our Master always overcomes evil by the principles
inherent in His holy nature - and by His victory over
the powers of darkness through His blood, shed on the
cross of Calvary.
let us not try to defeat evil by evil!
Of course, YOU would never do that, would you? But when
somebody does something against you, how do you respond?
Do you bless, or do you curse? How is your response to
evil? Is it in the same kind - tooth for tooth, and eye
for eye? Carnal reaction? Or is it spiritual reaction?
“overcome evil with good.”
We sometimes ask, “Why doesn’t God do something? Look at
these poor people suffering! Look at the terrible wars
in Iraq and Afghanistan! Look at the plagues in Africa!
Why doesn’t God do something?” And what we may actually
be demanding is for God to abrogate divine principles
and use brute force.
God never uses brute force as His strategy. God never
uses the power of the muscle to defeat Satan. If it were
simply a matter of His Almighty power, then God could
destroy everything, and be finished with the whole of
the corrupted creation.
God may use almighty power, for example, in winding up
an era, or a society - the Flood in Noah’s day; the
destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah; the destruction of
the armies of Rosh
the end of the present universe, when the earth melts
with fervent heat and the heavens are rolled up as a
scroll. But in dealing with evil, and in areas where
human response is called for, God uses spiritual
principles to fulfil, rather than almighty power.
When the Lord Jesus comes with His mighty angels at
Armageddon, He will not destroy the armies of
Antichrist by clobbering them with almighty power. He
will destroy them through His authority - “the sword”
that comes from His mouth.
There are two ways of removing a mountain. 1. Drop an
atom bomb on it. 2. By faith, say to the mountain, “Be
You say, “Both are impossible - to me at least. Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad may be able to do the first, and Saint
Somebody might be able to do the second, but not me.”
Yes, I understand, reader. My faith also, is smaller
than a grain of mustard seed. But we must admit that
Jesus could move a mountain by the principle of faith.
There is no record that He ever did - and evidently
there never was a need for Him, during His 33½ years on
earth, to move a physical mountain.
Jesus could also remove a mountain by the Word of His
almighty power. Which do you think would be easier - by
the Word of Power, or by the Exercise of Faith? Don’t
answer! That’s not the real point. The fact is that
Jesus lived and worked by
- just as He had seen the Father live and work.
“Y’shua therefore answered and said to them, ‘I assure
you of the truth, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but
only what He sees the Father doing; for whatever the
Father does, the Son also does likewise. For the
Father loves the Son, and shows Him all that He Himself
is doing; and greater works than these will He show Him,
that you may marvel. For just as the Father raises the
dead and gives them life, even so the Son also gives
life to whom He wishes.” (John
Mountains, in the above context (Matthew 17:20), are
symbolical of great obstacles - satanic roadblocks. The
Master removed many of these mountains through faith.
The disciples could not cast out a demon, because of
littleness of faith.
But later, as their faith grew, they also could remove
mountains of opposition.
God operates by spiritual principles (Faith, Love,
Holiness, Authority). Jesus, God manifest in flesh,
demonstrated those principles for us to observe; and the
Spirit of God is teaching us to apply those very same
principles in our lives and battles.
Y’shua did not do His miracles by the exercise of
almighty power, but by applying the principles of God.
By faith He healed lepers, by faith He walked on the
sea, by faith He raised the dead. He demonstrated
the principle of faith.
And in responding to obvious needs, the Messiah looked
for faith in the people concerned. If there was no
faith, He declared the fact, without faith it is
impossible to please God - without faith it is not
possible to experience God’s miracle.
In Nazareth, Jesus could do very few miracles because
of the widespread unbelief.
Was He not God? Yes! Indeed He was!
But someone will say, “With God all things are possible.
So if miracles were not possible for Jesus - at least in
Nazareth, it proves that Jesus was not God.”
Wrong! My friend, absolutely wrong !
Let’s consider the question: Can God do everything? We
say He is all powerful, so how can there be anything He
cannot do? Certainly God is all powerful, but there are
certain things He will not, or cannot do (whether
not, I’ll leave you to figure out.) Look at these
1 God cannot sin.
2 God cannot forgive sins unless the penalty
for sin has been paid.
3 God cannot justify the sinner unless the
sinner comes to the Saviour in faith.
4 God cannot wink at iniquity.
5 God cannot lie.
6 God cannot use carnal methods.
7 God cannot save anyone unless they repent and
8 God cannot take sinners to heaven unless
their sins have been removed (paid for).
9 God could not save Sodom - there were not
even 5 believers there.
10 God could not prevent Jerusalem’s destruction,
because of Judah’s apostasy.
11 Jesus could not save Judas Iscariot, even
though Judas was numbered with the apostles. Judas did
not believe and repent.
12 Jesus could not come down from the cross
because that would have been a rejection of the plan of
So Reader, there ARE things that God cannot or will not
do. God has limited Himself by the spiritual principles
of Faith, Love, Holiness, Divine Authority. And as those
principles are altogether wise and perfect, to abrogate
those principles - to go contrary to them - would not be
in order, and would not bring blessing. It would be
going against His own nature.
The King’s strategy involves every
one of His subjects.
We know that all born again believers “are members of
His body” (Eph. 5:30), and therefore we MUST be
The King does not say, “Okay, I’ll do all the fighting,
nothing for you to worry about.” No! He shares His plans
and strategies with us, and
in fulfilling them. He
us before the foundation of the world, as you read in
Ephesians 1:4. This means He didn’t do things
haphazardly or blindly. He
us in the
And for our effective participation,
teaches us to conquer
through the use of His spiritual principles, and by
Divine authority - the authority that is derived from
We know that satanic schemes are calculated to frustrate
the Divine plan.
Therefore, Paul says, “be
a good soldier
of Jesus Christ.” But aren’t we often inclined to think
that warfare is for a few select, tough, Christian
people. We say, “Don’t talk to me about Christian
warfare! That’s not my line! I don’t mind helping in the
Church. Call upon me any time to take up the offering. I
will sing in the choir, but this warfare - I am not
interested in that. I’ll be a non-combatant; I don’t
mind being a nurse on the battlefield, but don’t ask me
But whether you like it or not, you are a soldier of
Jesus Christ- a combatant - whether you are a brother or
a sister. This is a reality. You are in the Kingdom of
God; the Kingdom of God has an enemy; your King has an
enemy, and therefore
as a part of the Kingdom of God, have an enemy. And
because you have an enemy, you need to
that enemy and his strategies, and you need to learn how
to defeat your enemy.
Believer, we must be trained by God to effectively
participate in this warfare. To be a good soldier you
need to go through a
thorough course of training
- and that’s not a weekend in army camp. Every officer
needs to go through a very rigorous course. And you and
I are going through a training period right now, in
which we must learn to conquer. We are learning the
spiritual principles of Faith, Love, Holiness and
The Master is teaching us to walk as He walked, to react
as He reacted, to do as He did, to fight as He fought,
to conquer as He conquered. His words and life must be
translated into our experience, so that we can
increasing testify, “I do nothing of myself, but only
what I have seen my Saviour do. And what He has done, I
do in like manner.”
Y’shua teaches us to conquer through the authority of
Blood of the Lamb
which spells defeat for Satan, for it is on the
basis of the Blood, (which means the life of the Lamb
laid down on the cross), that sinners are set free.
He teaches us to conquer by the authority of
His Word, the Word of God,
which is also called the Word of His power and the Sword
of the Spirit.
The King teaches us the authority of His Name -
- the Name above every name.
He teaches us to conquer also through the power of the
the Spirit of God, who dwells in our spirit. The Holy
Spirit is the power of God working within us, to teach
us how to use the authority of Christ in “binding the
strong man,” to lead us from victory to victory, and to
fulfil God’s strategy for destroying satanic strategies.
God conquers also through the
Word of Testimony
of His people. Our faithful testimony is a means by
which God defeats satanic accusations. Our testimony is
to who God is, to what Y’shua has done at Calvary, and
to what He had done in our lives. The Word of our
Testimony concerning the victorious Messiah, is also an
important strategic weapon.
In PART TWO, we will study “Knowing your enemy.”
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