WHAT IS THE BELIEVER’S AUTHORITY AND HOW TO USE IT IN SPIRITUAL WARFARE? A Compilation of Short Messages that explain Bible verses on this topic.
THE AUTHORITY IN JESUS’ NAME
“Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” – Luke 10:19
Most translations used the word “power” instead of “authority” for the Greek word “exousia.” But this means much more than power, it means “the power to act, the authority,” according to “Strong's Concordance.” Through Jesus, we have the power to act in His name against all the power of the enemy. Hallelujah! This means that we have authority against every sickness, attack and lie that the enemy comes against us with!
The devil has no real power against a born-again Christian, as a matter of fact, he only has as much power as we allow him, when we believe his lies as being the truth. That is why we should know what God’s Word says on every subject, so that we can recognize the enemy’s trick, not believing the lie and fight against it with the truth.
In Jesus' name, we have authority in the spiritual world. It is up to us to know this truth and act upon all that we have in Jesus, to fight against every sickness, depression, offense and all evil without giving up until we win or are made whole again.
THE DEVIL’S STRONGHOLDS CAN BE DEMOLISHED ONLY WITH THE SPIRITUAL WEAPONS
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds - 2 Corinthians 10:3-4
We are in a continuous struggle as long as we live on this earth. Since Lucifer rebelled against God, the first battle in the universe began. And after Adam and Eve chose to believe the lie of the devil, sinning against God, they lost their dominion over the earth to the devil, and every human being since then has been born into sin. There is a continuous war between good and evil. We have to make decisions all the time, and if we are not led by the Holy Spirit, we have no chance to make the right ones. During the years we lived without Christ, Satan established “strongholds” in our minds. These fortifications are twisted memories or opinions based on what we have experienced in the past, that the devil managed to make us believe as truth, but in reality, they are false. We cannot break down these preconceptions, which are stored as permanent memory in the brain, unless we renew our minds with the help of the Holy Spirit. The "battle of the mind" is a spiritual battle that can only be won by being aware of it and fighting it with the spiritual weapons, empowered by the Holy Spirit.
WE CAN BE STRONG IN THE LORD
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. - Ephesians 6:10
God has given us everything we need to be victorious over Satan, through Jesus Christ. It is up to us to strengthen ourselves in the Lord and in the power of His might. The Holy Spirit was the power source for Jesus, while He lived in a human body and He is also the source of power for us. The Holy Spirit is our Helper, which means that He does not force us to do anything, but He helps us when we ask Him to and gives us the strength we need in every situation. Until the crucifixion, Jesus was never separated from His Father and they always had a close relationship. We should follow Jesus' example in being obedient, praying and following God's direction all the time. By praying, studying and meditating upon the Word of God, by praising and worshiping the Lord, we strengthen our "inner man of the heart" and we are able to overcome the strategies of the devil.
ONLY BY WEARING GOD’S ARMOR WE CAN WIN IN SPIRITUAL WARFARE WITH THE KINGDOM OF DARKNESS
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. - Ephesians 6:11-12 The Lord has prepared the most appropriate armor to protect us so that we can fight against the "devil's schemes." God’s precepts are like the most perfect armor of the most armed soldier. But this armor can only protect us if we wear it. What is the "full armor of God"? The original Greek word, translated as “all/full/complete/whole armor” is "panoplia" which means: “a complete set of defensive and offensive armor (weapons), i.e. everything needed to wage successful warfare; (figuratively) the full resources the Lord gives to the believer so they can successfully wage spiritual warfare. In this way they do not fight for victory – but from His victory!” (according to “HELPS Word-studies”). Our fight is not only against the opponents we see with our physical eyes, but we have to fight against the spiritual forces that are behind what we fight in the natural. The Bible also shows that there is a certain hierarchy in the kingdom of darkness. There are different demonic ranks that dominate territories and the people they use to manifest their power. In Daniel 10:13 and 20, we read that an angel of the Lord had to overcome the princes of Persia and Greece, who tried to stop him from bringing God's answer to Daniel's prayers for his nation. Demons, no matter their rank, cannot defeat God’s angels of the Lord, they can only delay them from accomplishing their assignments. Angels are "servant spirits sent to perform ministry for those who will inherit salvation," (Hebrews 1:14) so God sends them to help us, as we read in several places in the Bible.
WE HAVE TO PUT ON GOD’S ARMOR TO WIN THE SPIRITUAL WARFARE
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. - Ephesians 6:13 We have to be equipped with all the pieces of armor that God has provided for us in order to walk faithfully on God's path, on a daily basis. Without having the armor on, we would be unable to remain strong in our faith in God, knowing that our Lord always loves us and never forsakes us. The enemy does everything in his power to convince us that God allows the problems and tribulations in our lives because we do not deserve God's love, therefore He does not love us anymore. Jesus, though 100% innocent, was rejected, mocked, imprisoned, tortured and even whipped almost to death and then crucified as a common criminal. And He still never doubted the love of the Father. Jesus endured tremendous rejection, pain and suffering and never gave up on us. He went through such terrible torment to save us, because He loved and continues to love us so much.
Only by thinking in agreement with God’s Word can we be truly convinced of how much God loves us and be able to stop measuring His love for us based upon how good or bad things are going in our lives. The more we renew our minds according to God’s truth, the more firm we may stand after doing all that we can in our crises. In Jesus we are victorious!
BE GIRDED WITH TRUTH AND WEAR THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness. Ephesians 6:14
It is crucial to always be prepared, ready to fight, because our spiritual warfare has no breaks. Knowing the truth of God's Word is the most important part of our armor. Only the “belt of truth” allows us to move freely and holds our offense and defense weapons in place, just as the belt of the Roman soldier kept all his armor pieces in place. The belt also held the sheath in which they carried their sword. If we only hear the truth, without "knowing" it, it is not enough to be free, as Jesus said in John 8:32. The truth of the Bible revealed by the Holy Spirit, becomes "living and working" (Hebrews 4:12) in our hearts where it convinces, teaches, transforms us and it becomes a fearsome weapon in spiritual warfare, when we proclaim it. The “breastplate of righteousness” is the piece of armor that protects the vital organs, especially the heart. In the Bible, the "heart" is not the physical organ that maintains physical life, but it refers to the "inner man," that is the spirit of the person who is "born-again" by the Holy Spirit when they sincerely repent of their sins and believe upon Jesus. We can be righteous, (which means without sin) only through the sacrifice of Jesus. If we truly ask God to forgive us when we sin and regret what we have done, the Lord is faithful and forgives us. When the enemy comes to condemn us for the sins we have already repented of, we need to realize that we are forgiven, have on the “breastplate of righteousness” and we can resist the enemy's accusations in the name of Jesus. The enemy's attack will fail if we realize that when we repented with all our hearts the Lord forgave us, “casting all our sins into the depths of the sea” (Micah 7:19b), meaning that our sins are gone forever.
THE SHIELD OF FAITH
.Above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. - Ephesians 6:16
The “shield of faith” has a vital role in spiritual warfare. For the soldiers, the shield was a very important part, because with its help, they were blocking the arrows of the enemy. It is not in vain that the devil fights with such fierceness to sneak thoughts into our minds, that would make us doubt God's love and the promises from His Word. If our faith is wavering, we much more easily become his victims. We are not attacked with toy arrows that are harmless; on the contrary, Paul tells us that by faith we quench the most powerful arrows, which have fiery heads that could destroy us completely. The devil not only uses the sins we have committed since we have become Christians to attack us with condemnation, but also the sins from before we even came to Christ. The “shield of faith” is for extinguishing all the arrows of the enemy, no matter what kind they are and it works in conjunction with the rest of the armor, accomplishing its purposes. We must align the words we speak with what we believe to be in accord with the truth of the Bible, to have a strong and efficient faith. Our relationship with Jesus must be based upon what God's Word says and not our emotions or on how much we "feel or not” the presence of the Lord. This is the only way to remain faithful to the Lord and continue to walk with Him. As James said, "… he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind" (James 1:6b). The Bible is the absolute truth that never changes, and God cannot lie. The Lord’s promises are true, and we can trust them, no matter how we feel or how bad our situation is.
THE HELMET OF SALVATION AND SWORD OF THE SPIRIT
And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; - Ephesians 6:17
We also need the protection offered by the “helmet of salvation” against evil thoughts. The “helmet of salvation” is the insurance that as long as we are totally surrendered to the Lord, living in obedience to Him, we cannot lose our salvation. Therefore, let us not hesitate to resist the lies of the enemy by which he attempts to make us doubt the love and salvation that we have in Christ Jesus. The following are some of the best Bible verses that we can use to “put on the helmet of salvation" in spiritual warfare: “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand” (John 10:27-29). The Word of God becomes an effective “sword” for the one who learns and applies it. The Scripture is the truth, and when we apply it under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we can defeat the lies and deceptions of the enemy and even of our own carnal nature. The proclamation of the Word of God has power and strengthens our faith.