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How to Fight the Spiritual Battle: Using the Tools Provided by God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
April 13, 2021 3:00 am

How to Fight the Spiritual Battle: Using the Tools Provided by God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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April 13, 2021 3:00 am

The old evangelist Billy Sunday said, “Temptation is the devil looking through the keyhole. Yielding is opening the door and inviting him in.” How many of us have our fingerprints on the doorknob, and wonder why we fell to the devil’s lures? Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie brings us good insight on the spiritual environment we’re living in. It’s a look at the spiritual battle being waged all around us and whether we realize it or not, we’re all combatants in the fight.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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The following message from Pastor Greg Laurie is made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God. If you would like to know how you can become a harvest partner, just go to harvest.org that's harvest.org anyone who chooses to follow Jesus Christ will play severe opposition from the enemy today.

Pastor Greg Laurie pressure we so often feel as we walk with Christ.

It comes from our adversary.

The moment you became a Christian, you entered into a spiritual conflict double delete declared war on you. It's been said conversion is made. Our hearts battlefield you learn why and eventually said temptation is the devil looking through the keyhole yielding is opening the door and inviting him in. Many of us have our fingerprints on the doorknob and wonder why we felt the floors today on a new beginning.

Pastor Greg Laurie brings good insight on the spiritual environment were living. It's a look at the spiritual battle being waged all around not how we are all combatants in the fight over just been walking with the Lord doing all the things you think Christian ought to do what all of a sudden you're just the raw's with spiritual attack you're getting hit would doubt you're getting hit with temptations. You're getting hit with all kinds of other problems you're wondering what horrible said how I committed to bring this upon myself right.

What have I done to deserve such a fate. Wondering what's wrong here. Why is God letting this happen. Maybe how many of you have ever had that happen right here and right pretty much everybody hears something to consider, and may not be happening because you're doing something wrong and maybe happily because you're doing something right and you are a threat to the devil. So this is something we need to be aware of. Listen, like it or not. The moment you became a Christian, you entered into a spiritual conflict double effectively declared war on you.

It's been said conversion is made. Our hearts battlefield. Anyone who chooses to follow Jesus Christ will face severe opposition from the enemy and you have a choice in the spiritual battle you can win, you can lose.

You can gain ground. You can lose ground to get to think due to Micah spiritual precipice. A key partner to go down buddy.

You're going down to learn how to fight.

We have to learn how to use the weaponry to God is given to you by the way the Bible frequently uses the images of war and conflict to depict the Christian life. Paul exhorted Timothy in second Timothy three to be a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

He also wrote I ought to good five the Christian life is not a playground it's a battleground. But here's the good news we can win in this war. Here's some more good news. We are going to win in the end. So if you feel like you're being a little overwhelmed right now just understand that God is with you and he is told you how to win in this spiritual battle.

You know Jesus said the gates of hell would not prevail against the church and heard that statement before one is that mean we settle the mill, get the hell will not prevail against the church.

What you think that means I'm annoyed that what I like with soundtrack. What is it mean when it says the gates of hell will not prevail against the church. We have to go back to ancient times and the way they conducted warfare and we know that a common military tactic used by armies and that they was to break down the gate of the enemy's fortress with a battering ram right. You've seen a lot of movies so the battering ram. Sometimes it's on fire. It hits the wooden gate and the gate catches on fire and the soldiers rushed in and defeat the occupants of the fortress. So the idea is the gates will not prevail against the battering ram. So the idea here is, as we are moving forward is Christian as we are gaining ground, not just holding ground and hopefully not losing ground as written been seen into enemy territory. If you will with the message of the gospel. We are going to ultimately win the battle begins, a bell will not prevail against us or be able to stop so here we are now looking at what this battle is going to look like for us. It's important we understand it, because to be forewarned is to be for armed when they say that again to be forewarned is to be forearm. So let's find out about this war and let's all look at Ephesians 6, verse 10. Finally, my brother, some reading from the new King James version, be strong in the Lord and in the power of his mind put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles that's an old tiny word that means strategies indices set against the strategies, indices or wiles of the devil.

But 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 are just the supernatural world talking about the rankings of demon powers that are out there just like in the military.

We have rankings we have generals and corporals lieutenants and sergeants and Buck privates and all that will in the supernatural world are rankings of fallen Angels as well as rankings of holy angels anyway so are fighting against these posts in the supernatural realm. Therefore, remember whenever you see the word therefore find out what it's therefore so in light of this, or therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may build or withstand in the evil day, having done all, to stand. So if you're taking notes here is point number one recognize this is a spiritual battle and I must be fought with spiritual. Let me say that again recognizes as a spiritual battle and I must be fought with spiritual weapons. You fight fire with fire and there some key ways to overcome the devil and his demons because God is not left us in the dark here and he tells us first 11 put on the whole armor of God in the phrase put on carries the idea of once and for all. Do it once and for all, or do it permanently. The full armor of God is not to be put on and taken off. You need to keep it on because were going to be in the battle for the final day the spiritual battle and will beget to heaven.before, so we keep the armor of God on and why number two. Because Satan is a super being and he's more than I can ever handle Satan as a super being is a powerful fallen angel. I'm no match for him. Nor are you verse 11 that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Teapot objective is to say as far away from the devil as I possibly can.

Not to ski this close to what he's offering as I possibly can.

The Bible tells a story in the book of acts about some guys called the sons of Skiba who were identified as exorcists and there were trying to cast the demon out, by the way, the Bible never validates exorcists and validates casting demons out of people but there's no real biblical office of being in exorcists and so someone says I'm in exorcists. My gift is casting demons out for an appointment in the Bible. I do find demons being cast up another person with a specific gifting of exorcists. These guys were called in exorcists are exorcists rather and does so they try to cast the demon out, they said to this demon possessed guy, out of this person in the name of Jesus whom Paul preaches because it seemed Paul good so they thought they could do it like it's a magic formula and the demon in the guy says listen I know Jesus and I know Paul but I don't know you, and then the man with the evil spirit leaped on them, overpowered them and attacked them with such violence. They fled from the house naked and bladder.

That's what happens when you try to take the double line of your own strength so don't go that why community the name of Jesus and Paul know you better just then, in the Lord only and not go where you shouldn't be this is a picture of us trying to overcome Satan in our own strength. You know when there's situation. An officer is called officer arrives. A call for backup. Call for backup and we need to do the same wanted spiritual battle.

We need to call for backup backup is the Lord himself Mr. Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message just a moment I want you to know tonight.

One thing God loves you in a new book, my grand pastor Greg Laurie brings us a deeper appreciation for the man and his message. No matter how you live. No matter what the color is there no matter what no matter what language is. God loves you a new beginning. Any only shared the gospel and he always emulated Christ and I think we can learn from his example. So I write about that a lot more this new book I've written called Billy Graham the man I knew it's an evangelist in the life of history's greatest event in your copy of the new biography Billy Graham, the man I knew who harvest.org currently here on a new beginning.

Pastor Greg is presenting a series called the afterlife and the eternal. Today he's giving us some powerful principles for spiritual battle. Let's continue. Number three to win in the spiritual battle I'm extending God strength, not my own to win in the spiritual battle I missed in God's strength, not my own. Verse 10. Finally, my brothers, be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might, or literally strengthen yourself in the Lord. See what the devil wants to do is get she was far from God as he possibly can serve like our phones you know they keep coming out with new versions of every phone out there. Every new iPhone.

Every new android phone and they do have all these features they had all I really want is a phone that has enough battery life to get me through the day.

Really that's what I want about you. I don't care about all this other stuff I don't care what color it is that I don't care about these extra feet just get me through the day because you watch that battery drain. They get lower and lower.

So you constantly plugging and recharging plug-in and recharging okay the ideas you want to state permanently plugged in to Christ and the devil doesn't want you to be plugged in the Christ you want to disconnected. So here's what you need to do.

Start the day with the Lord. When you get up in the morning. Don't start the day with social media don't start the day checking your emails start the day with the word of God and with prayer that will equip you to deal with all that stuff is going to come here way in your emails and in your tax and from other places so you need to get your day started the right way the devil doesn't want you to do that.

He wants you to do anything about that, but that's what we need to start stand in the Lord and the power of his might. Again, I want to keep as much distance between the devil and myself as possible for comes out of this flee temptation and don't leave a forwarding address run from it and assume some of your thing will list in a sense scary Greg you're scaring me tonight. I don't want to hear this. Don't you have a message about puppies and flowers that's coming later I'll get to that now. I really I know it's scary but let's just remember one simple statement greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world. God is more powerful than the devil and all the ice down on the Lord and in the power of his might and I don't dating Greg and the power of my mind because I can collapse quickly. Just like you know Paul breaks down the various pieces of armor verse 14 Stan therefore, there is therefore against the light of this stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace and above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one and take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God. So six pieces of armor are mentioned six pieces. The first three. The belt, the breastplate in the shoes were attached to the body, never to be removed. The second three.

This shield, the helmet and the sword were for specific purposes and methods of attack so it starts rising girded your waist with truth when he just use a more modern translation to put on the utility belt of truth.

You know about and has his utility belt right all the cool little things battling you through the people. That's how they noticed that Matt right that little thing he throws but think about a police officer. They put on that belt on the outside of their uniform. The call of the Sam Brown and on the Sam Brown. They have a holster for the gun, a place for their costs. A place for by and asked, possibly, which is a little baton thing. The pullout in use are they might have other little items have little thing to hold a donut. They have nothing but time. So the other utility belt. They put it on and all their stuff there/fly all the things they carried is on the belt so we put on the utility belt of truth, the Roman soldier had a belt and on his belt. He had a sheath which was for the sword obviously and also the breastplate was attached to the belt and John and the belt also pulled his mother pulled his little skirt okay because he wrote we were a toga told is basically just like a skirt and so would be down over his knees so when he's going in the battle he pulls it up above his knees and he cinches in the belt so it stays above the knees giving them freedom of movement. Now he pulls a sword out because I have the belt on because of someone pulls her belt off off comes your breastplate. There goes your sword and your dressers fell to the ground you're looking stupid right so what is this evening. Put on the belt of truth. Basically it's the same bottom line.

If you're not working truthfully before God. None of the rest of this really matters. You know if you're living a hypocritical life. If you're saying one thing and doing another than this is ducking to work for you so you start with a truthful right relationship with God, then you have the breastplate of righteousness. What is that mean the breastplate of righteousness will and certainly not the breastplate of self righteousness that will do anything for you. It's a breastplate of God's righteousness is not even the breastplate of your personal righteous living what it is is a representation of your stand before God. We talked about how we are justified, which means when you become a Christian, God forgive you of all of your sin and then he puts the righteousness of Christ into your spiritual bank account, so to speak. You stand positionally right before God I am a righteous man until Greg I saw you drive in here.

I don't know about that. I didn't say always the right to say but positionally before God I am a righteous man. You're a righteous man. You're a righteous woman. So I stand in the special relationship with the Lord and I bring this up because one of the doubles primary tactics is accusation.

You know he comes up to you key terms you to think and impure thought and then you sort of ticket for a test drive in the attached to what a hypocrite you are.

You're not even a Christian you don't believe in Jesus. Romeo blows against the breastplate, but this is righteousness where I'm not standing in my good works. What I've done for God I'm standing in what God is done for me.

Very important number three we are to have our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace. This is the footwear of the soldier it gave him, firm footed this and mobility on the field of battle.

If a Roman soldier wanted to be effective in battle. He had the day care of his feet.

One of the common tactics of the enemy of that date would be to take sticks that were sharpened and embed them in the soil so the Roman soldiers are dancing in the battle. They step on one of those sharpened sticks or ghost of their foot neurotic commission they're knocking to march one step further. So you want shoes that support you properly.

I I was having some sort of the thing work. My shins were like an aching then and I had these Nike errors and I kept thinking that was a solution. So I went to some store that sells athletic shoes. They got me on the treadmill. They said you know we know what your problem is your prone eating that offended me. I slap the guy did he explain what it meant. I apologize quickly guidance Latin, but prone eating, which basically means that that might put sort of rules and so he said you need more support you need errors like Nike errors.

You need a firmer soul so I got sold shoes with firmer souls for when I run which is never. But still I have them now so what is the meaning of your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace. It speaks of standing firm and gaining ground so when the enemy attacks. I don't back down or just hold my ground. I tried to it dance. So let's put it all together. The belted to speaks of purity, the breastplate of righteousness, speaks of integrity putting on your gospel shoes are, you're having your beach out of the preparation of the gospel of peace, speaks of mobility and how do I gain ground. Very simple answer by proclaiming the gospel.

That's how we advance in the spiritual battle.

Romans 1014 says, how can they call in Unless they believe in him, how can they believe in him unless they've heard about him and how can they hear about it unless someone tells him and how will anyone go until the molester said. That is why the Scripture said how beautiful are the feet of messengers or bring good news to look at your feet for a moment being to be beautiful right if you let me carry you forward with the message of the gospel Greg Lord important insight today on spiritual warfare, explaining God hasn't left us unequipped and unprepared for that battle. There's more to come here on a new beginning as his message how to fight the spiritual battle continues now to hear any portion of the study. Again, go online to harvest.org or call for CD copy 1-800-821-3300. We can take your call anytime 24 seven. Again, dial 1-800-821-3300 and that it's such a joy to make available Pastor Greg brand-new book called Billy Graham the man I knew it's a rich biography meticulously researched and is full of great inspiration for our lives.

There are indeed practical takeaways for all of us in learning about Billy's life, but Pastor Greg as you as you look at Billy's life through the eyes of an evangelist water a couple of the takeaways for you. Yeah well I observed Billy very carefully.

You know when he was on the platform. I would be sitting up there and I could watch him and I watched him as he gave the invitation and thousands of people would come forward to accept Christ, and I asked him after Billy what are you personally experiencing physically when you give an invitation and his response was, I feel like power is going out at me and I understand that because I've stood on stages in stadiums and arenas and seen many people come forward in urine that definite time of spiritual warfare of the devil really attacks those were called to present the gospel.

I think one of Billy's secrets was he didn't take himself too seriously.

He took his message very seriously. But, but he was really a genuinely humble guy I think of one occasion I was with them in Portland, Oregon, and he had preached at that night of the crusade, it was a powerful Mike Johnny Cash and actually played that night as well and so were leaving the stadium and there are people lined up on each side being held back by these ropes and some security people just Billy Billy and you know is like Moses was walking through and and I was walking next to him and then we got in the car and were driving out and so his longtime friend and associate TW Wilson is at the wheel. I'm riding shotgun in the back seat is Billy and his son Franklin so I thought I want to complement Billy's return rising, Billy. That was a great message tonight. He looked at me with those steely blue eyes and he said well it's just gospel.

I turned back around a fellow I know it's just cost that's clear and then II thought is that Mel something he had said a particular nature by Carranza Billy I love that point. When you said Christ can re-sensitize your conscience, and he looked at me and said well he can about Dr. Bachrach. I'm not seeing anything else that I was I was learning something. When I was learning was innocent people loved. You know, just all was not great tonight and how did I do and none of that. He didn't want to talk about it. It was done all the accolades all the adulation he was moving on, and it was behind him and then we went back to his hotel and somebody given us these cold barbecue sandwiches barbecue beef sandwiches to eat.

There were hot when they were given to us, but cold by the time the crusade was over. So we went up to his room to eat these cold sandwiches and Billy disappears and comes back out in his pajamas and his dress shoes. I guess you forgot his slippers and so I'm sitting there in his room. Billy and his pajamas. TW is telling some jokes were laughing were having a good time and I was learning to, I was learning that you know when you have these moments were used by God and people come to faith. That's great, but you know now you gotta get back to normal life that something actually put into practice in our own Crusades. It's like afterwards and I want some big party and got with a bunch of people I just go back to normalcy by government to go back and maybe hang out with my grandkids or do something normal because it's it's kind of an altered state of reality to be on a stage in front of a lot of people in and have the Lord word to you in that way and you want to remember to continue to give God the glory. It's not you, it's him and and I think that something Billy understood from the beginning to the end of his ministry. He would often say I'm just a country preacher and I would say what bill you're the greatest country preacher for Gordon, but he really was in this art just still that young farm boy from Charlotte, North Carolina used to milk cows and didn't enjoy it all that much, but you know God called him and and so he he maintained his humility and he came through all of this with his integrity intact and is not something we need to hear and this time onward hearing the stories of people who are in Christian leadership. Failing morally in other areas. It's good to know that we have a guy that he live the life he was the same guy in private that he was in public so this is a book that will give you insights in the Billy it'll show you the funny side of Billy it'll show you things that maybe you've not seen in other books and it was my honor to write it and it's called Billy Graham the man that I knew yet it's a fascinating biography and inspiring biography and it's hot off the presses and you can be one of the first to receive Billy Graham, the man I knew will send it to say thank you for your investment in the mission of this ministry. It's an investment in touching lives like this one the right dear Pastor Greg, I just love how you are such a real down to earth pastor. I feel like I know you, I listen to your encouraging words as you preach God's word and God uses you to speak into my life while serving him in Mexico for the past 20 years will again when you help us reach people like this with your investment right now let us thank you, with Pastor Greg's new book, Billy Graham, the man I knew just try to set a new beginning. Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or call 1-800-821-3300.

That's a 24 seven phone number 1-800-821-3300 or go online to harvest.org when next I Pastor Greg offers more insight on the spiritual warfare we face in the equipment God is provided to help us fight victoriously tuned in for a new beginning.

Greg Laurie and possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God sign up for pastor greats free daily email, devotions@harvest.org


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