We denied the devil existed. What happens when you deny the existence of Satan? You wipe out the meaning of the armor of God and the sword of the Spirit. You lose your identity as a soldier of Christ. The gifts of the Spirit— “mighty to the tearing down of strongholds”—lose all meaning.
I wondered why leading pastors never confronted the evil Obama did to the church. I assumed they felt it wrong for preachers to entangle themselves in partisan politics. Today I know better.
Their issue is with confrontation itself. They hate confrontation. They refuse to believe we locked in a battle with evil. It oozes out of everything they preach.
For them, the enemy is low self-esteem not Satan. They focus on happiness and career satisfaction. Mario, what is wrong with that? Nothing, except it cuts against the grain of everything Jesus taught.
He said “but seek first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.” –Matthew 6:33. The unmistakable mantra of the stylish American Church is to “seek all these things.”
When the top selling Christian books of the last several years don’t mention Satan it exposes the appetites of this generation of Christians. It explains how we lost more ground to Satan, in less time, than at any other Christians in history.
And with all due respect, the teachings of these pastors actually make a purpose driven life impossible. 1 John 3:8 says, “for this purpose was the Son of God revealed, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” If you are not engaged in war against evil, you are denying Christ’s purpose. If you deny His purpose, how can you say you found yours?
Denying we are soldiers in a war destroys our capacity for sacrifice and obedience. We try to create heaven on earth and have our reward here. Instead of being in warfare, Christians are on welfare. They believe there is no work to be done, or struggle to endure, or enemy to resist. We didn’t just lose the war for our nation’s soul, we forfeited. We never even showed up.
How do we reverse this curse?
You have to separate yourself from the Christian happy hour. Explode the myth that there’s a happy life for those who deny we are in a war. What you will not read in any of those books is the disasters of so many who tried Disneyland Christianity.
Believing you can leave Satan alone and he will leave you alone, is like believing the bull will not charge because you are a vegetarian. Accepting Christ made you a target. Satan hates you and means you great harm. Ready or not…here he comes.
You must pick up a weapon. Gun control is not just a liberal cause. There is spiritual gun control in the church. Paul said in 1 Corinthians 12: 1 “Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant.” The soldier who is not firing at the enemy is taken out first. All nine gifts are weapons.
Remember, you have the only faith designed for living behind enemy lines. Every other religion in the world makes allowance for escape. Not so the Christian faith. Jesus said in 17:15 I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.”
Safety is not in denying war but in fully embracing it. Jesus is called the Captain of our salvation. He leads only to victory. When you—through Christ—declare war on the devil, you instantly gain the backing of all of heaven. On the other hand, when you live the Christian life for yourself, you also live it by yourself.
Don’t disrespect Satan by fighting him on your own initiative: Spirit-filled Christians especially are guilty of downplaying the devil’s power. The insult him and trash talk him not realizing they are not protected from shenanigans. Jude 1:9 says, “Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!”
Driving back the forces of the enemy in our culture will require more than hot flashes, cold chills, or the brush of angel’s wings. We can’t win unless our warfare is born in God, led by the Holy Spirit, and Bible based.
Arthur Matthews said, “Victories over the devil are not won by having a Bible and knowing some of it. Nor are they won by resolutions and good intent. It takes the Sword of the Spirit, God’s specific utterance, thrust at the enemy in the power of the controlling Holy Spirit with an unashamed “It is written” and “Thus saith the Lord.”
I say this last part out of a broken heart and with tears: God help you ministers who weakened millions Christians off the battlefield at America’s darkest hour. You hastened the spread of evil in America. You stood there basking in the adulation. You could have fielded an army but chose instead to send the sheep home grinning under the glow of false hope and undetected apathy. You had two messages. Your heart told you which was God, and your mind said which one would bring success—success that will mean nothing if the church in America is driven underground.
The good news is that God is looking for a few good men and women. He can take a nation back with a handful of sold out, rightly fitted soldiers. Time to sing “there’s an army rising up—not with wispy emotion—but life and death conviction.