In Ephesians 6, the apostle Paul listed our full battle gear in Christ, and all are defensive weapons, except one – the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. When Satan came at Jesus, He showed us just how powerful a well-aimed verse can be. For every attack, He calmly replied, “For it is written.” And each time, Satan backed off.
Hebrews 4:12 tells us “the Word of God” as preserved in Scripture, “is alive and active” and “sharper than a double-edged sword” (NIV). The Holy Spirit uses the truths recorded in our Bibles to protect us from deception, guide us when we’re confused, strengthen us when we’re weak, redirect us when we’ve gone astray, and comfort us when we’re hurting or afraid. In it, we don’t just encounter timeless truths. We encounter, personally and intimately, a timeless God who promises to give us all we need to stand firm in Him.
5. Eliminate harmful influences.
You’ve probably heard it said, what you consume begins to consume you. We like to believe that we’re intellectually and ideologically autonomous, but we’re more easily influenced than we might think. I’ve been alarmed by how quickly my attitude can change based on who I’m with. When I spend too much time reading or watching the news, which often increases their ratings by capitalizing on human fear, I can easily lose sight of truth – that God is bigger than any threat and remains in full control. Similarly, when I surround myself with people of faith, my peace and discernment grow.
I know I’m not alone in this, which is why Scripture warns us repeatedly about our associations. “Do not be deceived,” Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:33, “‘Bad company corrupts good morals’” (NIV). Similarly, Proverbs 12:26 tells us good people act as righteous guides while those who are wicked lead others astray.
This doesn’t mean we should sever our relationships with those who don’t follow Christ. If we did that, we couldn’t fulfill our call to share the gospel. But we do need to remain alert to the effect our culture and those in our social circles have on us. And we should form our closest connections with those who continually encourage us to honor, trust in, and rely on God.
The Bible is clear: We have a very real, powerful, and relentless spiritual enemy determined to kill, steal, and destroy our lives and all we hold dear. But even more than that, he wants to distort the greatest evidence for the gospel – the power and love of Christ in us. Praise God, we are far from victims. No matter what comes against us, you and I are more than conquerors in the One who, through His death and resurrection, conquered all. He’s given us everything we need for victory. We simply need to fully embrace and utilize all the supernatural gifts we’ve already been given.
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