Bible Reading: Ephesians 6:10-20
“Therefore take up the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm” (Ephesians 6:13)
The crux of the war is this; Satan wants to be God. He wants people to worship him and serve him. He wants the highest glory, power and honour only God deserves. In the Garden of Eden, Satan tempted Eve to join him in rebelling against God. Eve thought eating the fruit of good and evil would make her like God. She marvelled at such an idea and thought receiving knowledge and power like God would be desirable. So, she ate the fruit, and she joined Satan in his pursuit for self-acclaimed glory.
Every day, we fight a spiritual battle against Satan and his lust for glory. It gets complicated because, at one point, we lusted for glory too. Satan continually tries to exploit this and lure us astray from glorifying God. Our war is to put to death our old self and learn to give all the glory to God.
Satan is constantly trying to lure us away from glorifying God in our everyday lives, including our lives at school. He might try to distract us with all the fun and joy this world has to offer. Our friends might idolise video games, or maybe they adore gossip. Our heart lurches towards these things because our sinful nature resonates with them. Satan tingles these bells so that we abandon living for God and band with our friends in worshipping idols that we think can make us happy.
On the other hand, Satan may try to belittle us for following Christ. When we try to stand up for what is right, we get belittled. At these times, Satan will again have a go at our past sinful nature and speak lies to us. “You’re not good enough. No one likes you. Being a Christian is shameful. It’s not worth it”. Every day is a spiritual battle.
How are we meant to fight? God does not call us to solo battle against Satan to slash his head and bring home his crown; God calls us to stand firm. He calls us to hold firm in our faith to walk step by step in giving all the glory to God, who rightfully deserves it. This is an impossible task for us. We need Christ.
To put on the armour of God means to, first and foremost, put on Jesus Christ. Romans 13:14 says, “But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” When I said it gets complicated, it’s because of this. No matter how hard we resolve to give glory to God, we will always fail by ourselves because our nature is to give glory to ourselves. We love sin. Without Christ, we are under to bondage of sin. Romans 6:17 says, “[we] were once slaves to sin”. It’s not that easy to just get out. Sin deprives us. Sin deserves death.
Ephesians 2:1-2 says, “and you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience.” Because we sinned, we are dead and more than that, we have become enslaved by Satan. It’s impossible for us to turn back to God, let alone stand firm against Satan. He is a fierce enemy, and He rules over all the evil of the world.
The one and only person to defeat Satan is Jesus Christ.
In our desire to battle against Satan, have we ever run to Christ? Only because He came to die and defeat sin can we ever stand before Satan. The first and foremost move in our battle is to run to Christ. It is to accept His sacrifice, which makes us clean. It is to realise that it is not us that could ever win — in fact, we were on the enemy’s side — but to realise that it was “God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ” (Ephesians 2:4-5).
Until this truth becomes our identity, the world will always prevail because we will be part of the world. Until we are separated wholly for Christ and until we repent fully of our sin and surrender our whole self to obey and submit under the one who can save us, there is no victory. Only when this truth becomes ours will any of the graces of the armour work. Christianity is not a do and don’t religion. Christianity is Jesus Christ who died to save us. Have you believed?
Lord, please forgive my sins and rebellion against You. I cannot save myself or fight this battle myself. I am only saved and safe in Your sacrifice and Your victory on the cross. Teach me to submit to You. Don’t let me fight on my own. Don’t let me tick the do and don’t boxes. Teach me to have a relationship with You and to know what You have done for my victory on the cross. In Jesus’ name, amen.