Tuesday, June 19 , 2018, 9:10 pm | Fair 62º

 
 
 
 
Faith

Jim Langley: The Spiritual Battle Around Us

We’ve all experienced those times when we sensed some spiritual force either accomplished or prevented an incident in our lives.

Thirty-four years ago, I could easily have been killed in an automobile accident. If I had swerved to the left, I would have run head on into oncoming traffic. For some reason, I swerved right and bent my right front axle and did not suffer any injury at all.

The incident did cause me to become aware of a serious drinking problem. You could say I took a crash course in sobriety.

This was simply a stepping stone in my personal journey on the road to Christ. There’s a spiritual battle that is continually being waged for lost souls! Good and evil forces are fighting this battle daily in the lives of all who are either convinced or unconvinced that Christ died for our sins.

If you are having difficulty grasping the idea of spiritual warfare, let me recommend two excellent books written late last century by Christian author Frank Peretti. This Present Darkness and its sequel, Piercing the Darkness, are worth the read.

These two best-selling fictional novels paint a vivid picture of what I truly believe goes on in a different dimension unfathomable to the human psyche.

Try to imagine angels and demons struggling for control of lives caught up in daily activities without us having any clue of what is going on around us. You probably think it takes a great deal of imagination to conjure up such thoughts. On the contrary, scripture tells us that angels and demons do truly battle over this world and its inhabitants.

In Daniel 10:4-14, the prophet Daniel tells of an encounter with a being who appears to be the pre-incarnate Christ. He shares with Daniel that He was detained three weeks by the King and a prince of Persia (Satan and one of his ungodly angels) until Michael the Archangel came to assist Him.

Daniel is then told that He and Michael will again go into battle against the princes of Persia and Greece after He shares with Daniel what is written in the Book of Truth about the future.

In Ephesians 6:12 we’re reminded that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of the evil in the heavenly realms.” The battle for souls continues in our modern world and we need to be aware that it exists.

You may be saying, “Well, that’s fine, but what can I do about it?”

Well, I believe we can follow Paul’s directive in Ephesians 6:13-19 and “put on the whole armor of God ... And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.” We have no armor greater than prayer and the Word of God to ward off the enemy.

We must also follow the words found in James 4:7-10 and submit ourselves to God and resist the devil. We must draw near to God and He will draw near to us. We must humble ourselves before Him and He will lift us up.

There is a spiritual battle that goes on over each of us, and Satan and his demons want to render us ineffective for the Lord. They want to do everything they possibly can to discourage us in our daily walk.

I’ve always been encouraged by the accounts of Jesus being tempted by Satan in the desert for 40 days. He did not succumb to temptation and always responded with the phrase “It is written.”

Our strength can be found in His Word, which is made clear by the Holy Spirit who desires to live in your heart. That’s how I’ve been getting through the spiritual battles that I’ve faced the past 30-plus years ever since I accepted Christ as Savior and Lord of my life. He’s the Answer you’ve been searching for as you’ve faced those things that may seem insurmountable in your life.

Jesus instructed His disciples in Matthew 19:26 “... but with God all things are possible.”

Passages to Ponder

» Daniel 10:4-14

» Matthew 19:26

» Luke 4:1-13

» Ephesians 6:12-19

» James 4:7-10

— Jim Langley has been writing for more than 30 years while working as a life and health insurance agent in Santa Barbara. In recent years, his passion has turned to writing about his personal relationship with God, and his goal is to encourage others to draw near to Him as well. As a longtime member of CBMC of Santa Barbara (Christian Business Men’s Connection), he started writing Fourth Quarter Strategies columns in 2014, and he now reaches an international audience through the CBMC International devotional Monday Manna. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

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