11.12 The Defensive Warfare of Ephesians 6


Chapter 11: War upon the Powers of Darkness

from War On the Saints
by Jesse Penn-Lewis

Scriptures Referenced in This Section:
          (Follow the Scripture links if you want to study the Scriptures for yourself.)
Eph. 6:13; 2nd

The importance of the defensive aspect of the warfare against the powers of darkness, and of the standing power of the believer being made immoveable, is shown in Ephesians 6, where seven verses are given to describe the armour and the defensive position, with one verse only embodying the aggressive war by prayer.

The prayer-warrior fully armed must be alert in the defensive position, ready to stand against all the wiles of the devil, or the hosts of wicked spirits, whether they come as "powers," or with darkness, or in a rush of numbers upon him. He must know how to withstand in the "evil day" ( Eph. 6:13; top ) of the Satanic onslaughts, and "having overcome all" (A.V., m.), how to stand in the hour of victory, by discerning all their new attacks upon him in a change of tactics suited to the moment of triumph.

To maintain his defensive position the believer needs to know what evil spirits can cause to be done to him, and about him, and be especially on guard lest he yields to their workings, thinking he is submitting to God. He must know that lying spirits can "burden" other Christians about him; give visions to them, and misinterpret things about him; cause these "burdened" ones to write about him to others, and suggest thoughts to others to his detriment; in brief, use every possible device to move him from his position of victory over them in his own personal life and environment. The greater his position of triumph - "having overcome them all" ( Eph. 6:13 , m.; top) - the keener the new schemes of the wily foe to dislodge the victorious one from his armour-encased position. If by any of these means they can get him to turn from the aggressive warfare upon them, or be disturbed by the apparent misjudgments of others, or beguiled into looking upon these things as a "cross" he must bear, he will have failed to discern the tactics of the wily foe.

But when the believer knows what evil spirits can do to him, and about him, he can distinguish their workings through others, and, standing steadily in his defensed position, he protects himself by aggressive warfare upon them as they work in these special ways, and does not settle down to accept all these things as "the will of God," but sets himself to extinguish them by a systematic and persistent counter-campaign of prayer.

[11.11] Training in the War of Prayer
[11.13] Prayer Against the Works of the Devil
11: War upon the Powers of Darkness - Table of Contents
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