The Christian Fight - How You Can Win!
Word of God tells us that all who will follow the Christian way of life
will have to face three deadly enemies, each of which tends to
discourage us from overcoming sin and developing the character of God.
These deadly foes can come between us and God. They put wedges into our
minds that can grow, gradually separating us from the guidance and
power of God's Holy Spirit and the faith of Jesus Christ — but only if
we allow them to do so. God says these enemies must be defeated,
and He tells us how to do it!1. Does the apostle Paul show
there is effort involved in living the Christian life — that eternal
life is worth fighting for, so we do not let it slip from our grasp? I
Timothy 6:12, 1:18-19. Whose "soldier" was Timothy? II Timothy 2:3-4.
Did Paul steadfastly follow God's way of life — did he know, shortly
before his death, that he had won the Christian fight? II Timothy 4:6-8.
is the Christian's warfare against physical armies, or is it a
spiritual warfare? II Corinthians 10:3-4. Just what is a Christian to
fight against? Verse 5.
The first enemy in the Christian's daily
warfare is his human nature with its ungodly characteristics (Galatians
5:19-21). Human nature causes us to rationalize deceitfully (Jeremiah
17:9). It entices us to sin — to break God's spiritual law — which cuts
us off from Him. Our nature can destroy us spiritually unless we resist
its wrong impulses, which lead to sin.
4. What is
the second deadly enemy of all Christians? Galatians 1:4. What should a
Christian's attitude be toward this world's social order, with its
glitter, glamour, status-seeking and alluring appeal? I John 2:15-17.
apostle John was referring to the society of this world, so much of
which is built on and motivated by vanity, self centeredness, lust and
Because most people have been spiritually deceived
(Revelation 12:9). they don't understand how so many of the world's
ways could be wrong in God's sight. Nevertheless, this world's ways do
bombard Christians continually with temptations that can lead them away
from following Christ.
5. Should Christians strive to
avoid the evil that is in the world? II Corinthians 6:14-18, Revelation
18:4. Does this mean they should move away from populated areas? John
17:15-18, especially verse 15.
Christ's prayer in John 17 shows
that God does not expect Christians to move to the mountains or deserts
to escape the world's distractions. Rather, they should strive to be
separate spiritually and refuse to participate in the sins of the world.
What, or who, is the third great enemy of every Christian? I Peter
5:8-9. Isn't Satan the devil ultimately responsible for inspiring all
the evil in this world? II Corinthians 4:4, Ephesians 2:1-2. As the
invisible ruler of this world, has he deceived the whole world?
Satan the devil, formerly known as the
archangel Lucifer (Isaiah 14:12-14, Ezekiel 28:14-17). became perverted
in his thinking and thus developed his evil nature, which he has
broadcast to humanity ever since Adam and Eve. Humans have
unsuspectingly acquired Satan's nature, which we call "human nature."
Notice how Paul described this natural state of mind: "The carnal mind
is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor
indeed can be" (Romans 8:7).
But once the Holy Spirit of God is
added to a person's mind, he has access to the spiritual power to
resist the attitudes of self-centeredness, lust, vanity and hate that
are spiritually broadcast to the mind by Satan.
No person is
compelled to obey these impulses from Satan. The devil has no power to
force anyone to think or do wrong! But the unsuspecting automatically
do so without realizing what is taking place in their minds. Most
people just drift along, responding to emotions and impulses that often
find expression in fleshly drives and vain pursuits.
the "god of this age," "the prince of the power of the air," is
actually working "in" (Ephesians 2:2) the minds of unsuspecting people
all over the world. That is why the Bible describes this world as "this
present evil age" (Galatians 1:4). and why the world is so thoroughly
7. After one is begotten by God's
Holy Spirit, which makes him a real Christian (Romans 8:9), the devil
will continue to try to deceive him, to lead him away from Christ and
His way. What did Paul warn the Corinthian Christians? II Corinthians
l):2-4, 12-15. Did some Christians in Paul's day begin to fall victim
to the devil's promptings once again? Galatians
Conversion does not shield us from Satan's
wavelength. He continues to broadcast the attitudes of his nature to
our minds in an attempt to spiritually overthrow us. When Jesus spoke
of overcoming, He referred to overcoming Satan's way. True Christians
are fighting to overcome Satan's subtle urging* and the teachings of
his false ministers, striving with God's help to remain true to His way.
Jesus Christ could qualify to restore the government of God and rule
all nations, He had to withstand Satan's most severe temptations. That
supreme struggle is recorded in Matthew 4. Notice how the devil
attempted to influence Jesus Christ to sin against God.
After Jesus had fasted 40 days and nights in the wilderness, how did
the devil appeal to Jesus' extreme hunger? Matthew 4:1-3. And to the
potential desire for prestige, glory and power? Verses 5-6, 8-9.
How did Jesus immediately respond to each of these temptations? Verses
4, 7, 10. What was the outcome of this titanic spiritual battle? Verse
Jesus Christ overcame the devil! He resisted Satan and
conquered him, showing His mastery over him. When He gave the devil an
order, Satan had to obey. He slunk away, knowing he was defeated in
this supreme spiritual encounter of all time. Christ overcame the
devil's wiles by the Word of God. He responded to the devil's
temptations by citing the scripture that applied in each situation. He
knew the Word of God thoroughly. Christ knew God's will and He obeyed
it. Therefore, the devil could not deceive Him.
Christians today also resist the devil with the truth God has revealed
to them? I Peter 5:9. What must the devil do if resisted steadfastly?
11. What instructions on fighting against
the impulses and attitudes of the devil does God give us through Paul?
Ephesians 6:10-12. Besides using the power of God's Spirit, what should
Christians "put on" to fight this spiritual battle? Verses 11, 13. Of
what does God's spiritual armor consist? Verses 14-17.
We are to
be clothed with the revealed "truth" of God (John 17:17) so we
can't be deceived, and wear the "breastplate of righteousness," which
is the keeping of God's law (Psalm 119:172).
Our feet are to be
shod "with the preparation of the gospel of peace" — we are to be
actively doing our part in getting out the message of the soon-coming
Kingdom of God (Matthew 24:14) that will rule this earth and bring it
The "shield of faith" protects us from the attacks and
enticements of Satan. This is not our own human faith, but the very
faith of Jesus Christ, which can be within us (Galatians 2:20,
Revelation 14:12). Christ's faith is imparted to us by God's Holy
Spirit (Galatians 5:22).
The "helmet of salvation" (Ephesians
6:17) keeps us properly oriented toward our spiritual goal. It is the
knowledge of God's awesome purpose for mankind — of becoming
Spirit-born members of the Family of God!
The "sword of the
Spirit" refers to the written Word of God (Hebrews 4:12). It is the
Christian's only offensive weapon in fighting against the devil's
influence. To rightly use this weapon we must study the Bible and learn
God's will and His promises.
12. What else did Paul say is necessary to win the Christian fight? Ephesians 6:18-20.
are to draw close to God in persevering prayer (I Thessalonians 5:17),
praying for all of God's people, for the Work of God's Church and for
their own needs.
This is the formula for successfully overcoming
Satan and forcing him to flee. This is the perfect strategy for
defeating human nature and the sinful attractions of this world, which
are both motivated by the archenemy of God.
Christians have a continuing spiritual fight on their hands. But with
the Word of God as their sword and His armor as their protection, and
if they persevere to the end, they will succeed in overcoming all three
(Be sure to request our free booklets Did God Create a Devil? and Human Nature — Did God Create It?)